Failing Efficiently

YLDP Houston students with Dr. Latha Ramchand, Dean and Professor of Finance at the C.T. Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston

YLDP Houston students with Dr. Latha Ramchand, Dean and Professor of Finance at the C.T. Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston

By Niharika Pakala

HOUSTON: On October 14, at India House, members of the Youth Leadership Development Program had the incredible honor of meeting Dr. Latha Ramchand, the Dean and Professor of Finance at the C.T. Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston. She has a Ph.D. in finance from the Kellogg Graduate School at Northwestern University, and is a gold medalist in Economics from Bombay University where she graduated with a Master’s degree in Economics.

Dr. Latha Ramchand’s presentation featured the unexplored power of failure, and the impact that missteps bring along the path towards success. She discussed the importance of effective failure—defeat that results in the promptness to succeed. As a highly successful woman, Dr. Ramchand amazed us by opening up about her own experiences of defeat that shaped her into the acknowledged woman she is today. She proved that opening up about failures is equally as important as recognizing them, she herself admitting that returning to the Kellogg Graduate School of Management after leaving after her first year was the hardest, but most pivotal choice that she made for her career. 

Dr. Ramchand’s disclosure of this personal defeat brought out an admired quality- courage. We have to learn to use our moments of defeat as sources of motivation that will embolden us to work harder and achieve. “I failed” does not translate to “I am a failure.” This central message is what resonated with our group the most. Missteps are crucial, setbacks are vital, and errors are pivotal. Failure is what leads to success. All of us understand this concept, but as high school students, we often forget to exercise it when we are constantly trying to survive in our overly competitive academic environments. Dr. Ramchand asserted the importance of speaking up about personal setbacks, instead of dismissing them. As students, we have to be more open about our failures and be able to discuss them to truly learn from them and mature.

Ultimately, failure is just another tool in our toolbox that we have to train our minds to use to succeed throughout life.

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