Saturday, August 27, 2011

What is your winning formula?

Chander is a very sincere boy in 1st standard, somehow on one day he could not complete his homework as his mother was ill and his father could not help him to complete it on time due to his busy office schedule.  Next day in the school, teacher scolded very hard to Chander without understanding the fact. Chander had never experience such rude scolding in past. He felt bad.  On that day he could not focus on the studies and instructions of teacher; result of which, he could not write anything in his daily calendar.  He had less homework. Next day same incidence was repeated. Chander understood that if he didn’t tell his mother about the homework, he would relieve from compulsory homework. Teacher would scold him, but it didn’t matter much. He would get more time to play, watch TV. Chander had made his mind and decided that he would not share anything to anybody in future. He also started to lie to his parents and teacher by giving certain excuses. So his winning formula evaluated was “to lie, not to share.” By doing this he thought that he would be successful in his certain goals.  

I developed an employment blank form where candidate has to mention his strengths and weaknesses. 99.99% candidates mentioned that they are emotional. Tough and assertive people also think that they are enough emotional. Why this is so? The main reason is our childhood and our upbringing. Parents and adults around us nourish the emotional dimension of the human being. Positive and negative emotions are main components of our life.  Being emotional, either passive or positive is the wining formula for most of the people.

Sumeet was denied to play by his mates. The reason could be anything. But Sumeet decided that if others are not allowing him to play, he would make his own team. He did that by using different tactics, like attracting other children by offering them to play his toys, sometimes by requesting them and sometimes just by being more aggressive. Sumeet decided to be team former and leader and this was his winning formula.

Survival of the fittest means to find out some ways for surviving in different events of life. Human find out these means based on his experiences. We develop/create the winning formula based on our past experiences, mostly during childhood. Every human being has his winning formula.  This is not necessary that the winning formula is logical or right. It is the mere experience where results are perceived. It can be illusioned satisfaction where person thinks that by using the tactic he would be successful in something.   

Does it really important to find out the wining formula? In my opinion, yes. Winning formula is just the perceived dimension of personality. If your winning formula is negative, then there are lots of chances to be more passive or aggressive in life. If you understand the derivation of your winning formula, then at least you can redevelop of amend the formula with new context. Roots of your personality are in past.  Your parents, teacher and surrounding have major influence on your personality.  Hence it is necessary to understand these roots.

Just seat back, relax and go in your past. Experience, why you are “you” today. It will help you to identify the derivation of your personality. You will understand why this is important to your kids if you are parents and to your students, if you are a teacher.    

Friday, August 19, 2011

Be a follower, but also be a leader: Small Initiative makes the difference.

(On the backdrop of fight against corruption)

Driving in Pune is a real challenge. If you are able to drive in Pune, you can drive anywhere in the world. I take more convenient route to reach the office. This route has less traffic signal and leads towards highway. I believe on defensive driving. However one day at one signal, I somehow miss the red signal while turning towards left side. All vehicles behind me did the same thing. They followed me and drove without notice of red signal. Next day when it was red, I stop and all vehicles behind me also stop! It happened on couple of occasions.

On last Saturday, we went to Marathi Comedy Drama. My wife had already booked tickets over phone. When we reached there to collect tickets, lot of people were standing and making a crowd. There was mess at ticket collection window. Nobody was bothered standing in a queue. I just requested the crowd to be in a queue. As all people were educated nobody resisted and formed a queue.

I would like to tell you about the psychology of the people and mass.  Take a recent example of crusade against corruption declared by Anna Hazare. We all are suffering from this disease. Corruption is the way of life. Anna Hazare and team came forward. And now every common man is the follower of Anna.

We are in the society where majority of the people are followers. If you take simple initiative to make the difference, you will get the followers. Following is not bad, but their energy needs to be channelized.  Each path is only one of a million paths. Therefore, you must always keep in mind that a path is only a path. But there should be somebody who makes the path. Anna Hazare is making the path by putting his heart in it. Leader does the same thing. When you follow somebody you should find the heart it.

But my intention is not to ask you to be only a follower and even Anna also does not expect this. There are lot many thing where we can make the difference. Every human being has the huge potential.  One small lead makes the difference. If you are the first at the traffic signal, you can take a lead by respecting the signal. You will see followers behind you.

Two years back, one clerk in nationalized bank denied to give the demand draft to my wife ( and asked her to get it from another bank. He had claimed that he was very busy and the day was for the disbursement of pension to pensioners. He was rude with pensioner and was giving the excuses. Will you spare him?  She did not.  She made a formal complaint to manager, nothing happened.  She complained higher ups and even grievance cell of the bank and it worked. The clerk had to face the disciplinary action and the Chief Manager of the area was at our home to apologize. The issue was not denying the demand draft; the issue was his behaviour with the customer and poor pensioners.

The problem in our society is we care a lot about our time. We feel that we do not have a time. At another side, we have lot of time to spend on social networking sites, parting etc.  We allow others to abuse our right. Have you find out another escalation route, if somebody is not responding properly?

Anna will not be there with you when any government official would ask the bribe for doing your work. You have to resist and take a lead to take that matter at appropriate platform. The time has come not to be in the victim role. One small lead makes a difference, not only in your life but others also. It is upto you if you want to be follower and leader.  

That may be the reason why Anna Hazare’s movement asks everybody to be another Anna Hazare (I am Anna).

Friday, August 12, 2011

Independence and Inner Freedom

Happy Independence Day! 

We had an inauguration ceremony of school constructed under CSR initiative by our company near Pune. After the function, students and teachers sung the national song, “Vande Mataram. I was thrilled while singing the same. (I fear some people even don’t remember the full version. They may also mistake between national anthem and national song.) What is the message? And only free person can enjoy the innerness of the words in national song and national anthem.

Freedom is the great word. Freedom gives the respect to the person.  But words alone are powerless. Only actions can make a difference. The function of these words is to inspire us to think, and then to act and make a difference.

Mahatma Gandhi had a dream of freeing the nation from British and he did that. Freedom fighters struggled a lot to get the status which we are enjoying today. We got the independence. But do we value this independence? As a species we have evolved to a level of consciousness, whereby we are no longer able to avoid our responsibility. Reclaiming our power is essential to both our individual survival and the healing of our nation. Let’s not discuss what’s happening in India and how the freedom and democracy is abused by everybody including us. We should not blame only politicians; we are responsible for the fate. But where is the end?

Think for a moment, how the world would be if all people had chosen not to strive for their dreams and make a difference. People like Mahatma Gandhi, Vir Sawarkar, Pandit Nehru, Martin Luther King, John Kennedy, Nelson Mandela, Mother Theresa...

You may look at these names and feel somewhat intimidated and be tempted to ask, “Can I really make a difference? Is it worth the price I would have to pay?” It is easier to live a compromised, mediocre life, hoping that someone else makes a difference, while you read about it. However, if that was your choice, you wouldn’t be reading this article now. Now is a time for action.

It is time to confront our upbringing, conditioning and circumstances. We all had and have people in our life, telling us that dreams are for children, encouraging us to be matured. Making a difference is like throwing a pebble in a pool. The ripples spread from the center to larger and larger circles of influence. It begins within you. Time has come to respect the freedom and take some responsibilities. It is the time of referring back to civil science which we learned during our high school. Not so much difficult. You have to come out from the capsule and take small steps like taking a freedom from preoccupied conditioning.

What we need more today is running the second freedom movement, personally, professionally and off course, as a responsible citizen of nation. Freedom from indiscipline, freedom for unresponsiveness, freedom from dishonesty, freedom from negative thinking, freedom from jealousy, freedom from inhumanity and freedom from every evil which we have within us and within society.

Let’s understand the real meaning of freedom. Happy Independence Day!

Sunday, August 07, 2011

Recession 2011-Survival in turbulent market

Sometimes market behaves in weird manner.  When market is weird, people have the tendency to be weird also.  S&P has taken a decision to cut the global ratings of US' sovereign rating by a notch to 'AA plus' from 'AAA'. This is something that has no preferences. This may have the adverse result on Indian market as well. United States and Europe econmy has the direct impact on the developing and underdeveloped economies. We have seen this happening in 2007-2008 meltdowns.  

In 2007-2008, most of the organizations acted strange. They didn’t believe on the positive side of the recession. Even some idiots had used the meltdown as opportunity to enforce their personal agenda by so called slimming. Very few people see the positive side of such developments. Nobody was enough experienced to handle such situations. Fear does not have any logic and so-called top people worked differently that time. Market taught lessons to organizations and especially so called strategists. We can even say it was market corrections. Companies had to run the restructuring exercises.

Now again we have in same situation. US may have either direct (fear factor) impact or indirect impact (exports and services) on us. At the other side, Indian situation is also not promising due to changing PLR rates and inflation. Currently we do not have much to act on this, but we can think some positive outcomes on organization and personal level. I had written an article based on one survey in 2008. (Please refer The actions and measures were based on the reaction of the market that time and still valid today. However now we are experienced now to understand the dynamics of market.

Some positive actions on such events can be as under:-

1)   Do more with less. (We learn this in colleges but eventually forgot: Maximum results in minimum resources); 
2)   Improve productivity and going beyond one limitations;
3)   Limit expenses which are not adding any value, e.g. really do we need to travel by business class? Or instead of travelling, teleconference will be the solution;
4)   Strategic recruitment only,
5)   No fear please. Align employees towards organizational goals. Review your performance management system if required. Identify nonperformers and have a plan for them;
6)   We have the tendency to hire costly consultants during good times. You must be paying huge charges to recruitment consultants, training consultants or any other consultants. Just sit back, relax and just think how much value they added. Are you underestimating the talent of your own staff? Why not develop the skills of internal talent? Project assignments work better on this.
7)   So called downsizing has adverse impact. Manage it properly. Your critical capital is Human Resources. You can not treat them inhumanly. I have seen where organizations recruited without any logic and then sacked them. Their only mistake was to join such unprofessional organizations. However professional organizations manage their talent well. Are you looking for short-term results or sustainability?    

On Personal front:-

1)   Review your earning and expenses.  Focus on long term results.
2)   This may have a good time to invest in mutual fund and share market.
3)   Stretch yourself. You have huge potential. Learn more skills. Ask more responsibilities.
4)   You should be in value added job (Please refer

This is not a time to be fearful about the future, but is the right time to create the future.  Same as the King created in the following story.

In a kingdom, a new KING is picked up by the ministers. He is picked for one year only. After one year, he is dumped on an island, which has a forest with wild animals. If, you were a citizen of the kingdom and if, you were picked up by the ministers, would you accept the offer? Somebody did! And what was the thought behind it?

In the first week, he visited the island and inspected it. He decided to use his authority as a King. He ordered that the trees and wild animals be removed completely. He ordered to build a beautiful house with a garden and birds in it. He transferred his personal wealth to it. This whole exercise took around nine months. The last three months he enjoyed the life as a King.

At the end of the year, he was ready for the ISLAND. He was happy.  His future was safe as he created it.

Market is the island. Your happiness is totally depend upon the opportunities you had in the past. Any way, a time has not gone yet.

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