On Aiming for the Stars: Chanda Kochhar’s Letter to Her Daughter

Chanda Kocchar, MD & CEO, ICICI Bank, wrote a letter to her daughter which struck a chord with its readers.

2 min read
Chanda Kochhar, MD and CEO of ICICI Bank. (Courtesy: Twitter/ <a href="">@EthosCorporate</a>)

Chanda Kocchar, the Managing Director (MD) and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of ICICI Bank is one of the most important names in the Indian financial circuit.

Her achievements and contributions have been recognised in the form of a Padma Bhushan Award in 2010, the title of the most powerful businesswoman in India in Forbes’ list of ‘The World’s 100 Most Powerful Women 2013’, along with being made part of Time magazine’s list of 100 Most Infleuntial People in the World, 2015, among other things.

In 2013, Kocchar contributed to a collection of letters put together by Sudha Menon in a Random House title called Legacy: Letters From Eminent Parents to Their Daughters.

In an extended letter to her daughter Aarti, Kochhar addresses what it means to balance a successful career and to have special, nurturing relationships with friends and family. Here are some excerpts from her letter.

It makes me feel so proud today to see you standing in front of me as a confident young woman right on the threshold of an exciting journey through life. I am looking forward to seeing you grow and flourish in the years ahead. This moment has also brought back memories of my own journey, and the life lessons I learnt along the way.

Through anecdotes, she teaches her daughter the value of treating children of both genders equally and the merit of hard work and honour. She also stressed on the need to have fulfilling familial relationships.

I remember the mail you wrote to me a couple of days later. ‘You never made us realize that you had such a demanding, successful, and stressful career. At home, you were just our mother,’ you wrote in your email.

Towards the end of her letter, however, is where she valuable advice- advice that is valid not only for Aarti, but for every young, ambitious person, looking for success in his or her field.

Aim for the sky but move slowly, enjoying every step along the way. It is all those little steps that make the journey complete... Aarti, there is no limit to what a determined mind can achieve, but in achieving your goal, don’t compromise on the values of fair play and honesty. Don’t cut corners or compromise to achieve your dreams. Remember to be sensitive to the feelings of the people around you and don’t forget to be diligent about your work.

Chanda Kochhar’s letter is an inspiration to us all. Whether you are a young career woman looking for success or simply a young professional looking for fulfilment, Kochhar’s letter has advice for everyone.

Read the full letter here.

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