How to choose role model?

Zeeshan Wasim

Being a student of business, I have always shown a keen interest in the life stories of successful business leaders, such as Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and a lot more. I have invested a lot of time in trying to find a common point in the lives of all these successful people. For most part, the lives of such people are very distinct from each other, and they have no common framework, however, there is one thing they all did right, and that was choosing the right people to look up to.

Whether it is the students or the professionals, every person has a role model, who they look up to for progressing in life. There is a common mistake that almost all of us make, which does not allow us to achieve what we set out to, and that mistake is looking up to a lot of people, instead of just one. When you have lots of role models, you will see that at a certain point, their advices will go against each other and in such a scenario, you will be unsured as to whom you should follow.

Such confusions do not allow us to follow a complete path that can take us towards our goals. Instead, we keep jumping from one path to another, when we have more than one option in front of us. Look at Steve Jobs in this regard. He did not make such a mistake. He was known for his perfect taste in designing and calligraphy, and in this area, he had only one role model to look up to: a professor and calligrapher, Robert Palladino.

Imagine if Steve Jobs looked up to multiple calligraphers for his designing inspiration, it would have resulted in uncertain and irregular work, which would never let his company Apple become as successful as it is today. It is never about listening to and looking up to lots of successful people. Rather, it is about choosing the right person as your role model.

About my personal experience I would like to tell that I have made the mistake of having multiple famous personalities to look up to, and it did not result in any effective learning or result. Once, I chose the right person to look up to, who is Steve Jobs, I was able to learn a lot about the world of business in a manner that did not lead to any confusion or contradiction.

To conclude the topic, all of us need role models as it helps us learn much more from their experiences and advices as well as their failures, and here it is to be noted that in the art of choosing a role model, one needs to strongly focus on quality, not quantity.

The writer is a digital marketer, entrepreneur, columnist, freelance content writer and a student of BBA at the Institute of Management Sciences (IMSciences), Peshawar. He can be contacted at:

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