Sunday, August 22, 2010



Let us find out
Nobody knows
Makes commitments
Makes promises
Makes a mistake but says, “I was wrong”
Makes a mistake, but says – “It was not my fault”
Let me do it for you
That is not my job
He goes through a problem
He goes around it and never gets past it
I am good, but not as good as I ought to be
I am not as bad as a lot of other people
I have a programme
I am sorry, ‘ I don’t have any”
There ought to be a better way to do it
That is the way it is always been done
It may be difficult, but possible
It may be possible, but too difficult



Two men, both serially ill, occupied the same hospital room. One man was allowed to sit up in his bed for an hour a day to drain the fluids from his lungs. His bed was next to the room’s only window. The other man had to spend all his time flat on his back.

The men talked for hours on end. They spoke of their wives and families, their homes, their jobs, their involvement in the military service, where they had been on vacation. And every afternoon when the man in the bed next to the window could sit up, he would pass the time by describing to his roommate all the things he could see outside the window.

The man in the other bed would live for those one-hour periods where his world would be broadened and enlivened by all the activity and colour of the world. The window overlooked a park with a lovely lake, the man had said. Ducks and swans played on the water while children sailed their model boats. Lovers walked arm in arm and amid flowers of every colour of the rainbow. Grand old trees graced the landscape, and a fine view of the city skyline could be seen in the distance. As the man by the window described all this in exquisite detail, the man on the other side of the room would close his eyes and imagine the picturesque scene.

One warm afternoon the man by the window described a parade passing by. Although the other man could not hear the bank he could see it in his mind’s eye as that gentleman by the window portrayed it with descriptive words. Unexpectedly, an alien thought entered his head. Why should he have all the pleasure of seeing everything while I never get to see anything ? It did not seem fair. As the thought fermented, the man felt ashamed at first. But as the days passed and he missed seeing more sights, his envy eroded into resentment and soon turned him sour. He began to brood and found himself unable to sleep. He should be by that window – and that thought now controlled his life.
Late, one night, as he lay staring at the ceiling, the man by the window began to cough. He was choking on the fluid in his lungs. The other man watched in the dimly lit room as the struggling man by the window groped for the button to call for help;. Listening from across the room,he never pushed his own button which would have brought the nurse running. In less than five minutes, the coughing and choking stopped along with the sound of breathing. Now there was only silence – deathly silence.

The following morning, the day nurse arrived to bring water for their baths. When she found the lifeless body of the man by the window,she was saddened and called the hospital attendant to take it away- no words, no fuss. As soon as it seemed appropriate, the man asked if he could be moved next to the window

The nurse was happy to make the switch and after making sure he was comfortable, she left him alone.

Slowly, painfully, he propped himself up one one elbow to take his first look. Finally, he would have the joy of seeing it all himself. He strained to slowly turn to look out the window beside the bed. It faced a blank wall.

Moral of the story:
Life is all about perception. For some a gentle breeze can invoke lot of happiness but for some others even the costliest gift in the world fail tobring a smile on their face. It works wonders if we are able to assimilate the brighter aspects of life and discard the inequities. The pursuit of happiness is a matter of is a positive attitude we consciously choose to express. It is not a gift that gets delivered to our doorstep each morning, nor does it come through the window. It is something that we consistently need to practice and work towards, to usher in that obscured happiness into our lives.

The pursuit of happiness is an inward journey

Our minds are like programs, awaiting the code that will determine behaviours; like bank vaults awaiting our deposits. If we regularly deposit positive, encouraging, and uplifting thoughts, if we continue to bite our lips just before we begin to grumble and complain, if we shoot down that seemingly harmless negative thought as it germinates, we will find that there is much to rejoice about.


Life is a series of decisions and considerations that lead one through a certain unique path. As human we think about the situations we are in and react accordingly. In other words, we live through a cycle of thought and action. Human actions emanate either from the mind or the intellect or from a combination of both. Thoughts can give birth to an endless world filled with wonder and beauty. Actions give expressions to that beauty right here and how. Strong and pulsating thoughts are the starting points of all achievements.

The recently released book “ A better India, a better world” authored by Sri Narayana Murthy, speaks about the management styles prevalent in different parts of the world. He says that there is not much difference in the modus operandi of organizations world over. But the deciding/differentiating factor lies in the success percentage of the conversion of a legitimate and innovative thought into action. Why no ideas and thoughts matter. If Einstein kept the theory of relativity just in his mind, imagine the plight of science today. If Alexander Graham Bell never bothered to put words to his thoughts, what could have been the plight of humanity ? To conceive an idea is not enough, we need to breathe life into it.

Is it just enough to convert our thoughts into action ? No. It is imperative to combine the power of thought with our reliance and belief in action. When we leverage thought to create a vibration aligned with the results we desire and we take action that enhances that vibration, our creative power shines. That is when it looks to outsiders as if we were favoured by the gods, living a charmed life where everything goes our way. By holding proper thoughts and having aligned emotions helps in p;ropitiating good deeds and thus makes our lives more meaningful.

When we are on the road, driving a car/riding a bike, how many times have we averted an accident ? When we see an oncoming vehicle coming straight at us, do we not steer the vehicle to avoid a head on collision ? What would have happened if all these things just remained as thought in our mind and we forgot/fail to act on it ? Anybody in sane mind would act in conjunction with the circumstances. Likewise, not responding to the challenges/changing milieu can prove to be fatal at times. We need to act and at time pro-act. The entire process right from the conception of an idea to its fruition/implementation is equally essential. An idea is just a thought and it remains impecunious unless acted upon. To succeed we need to give wings to our dreams and make it into a reality.

Many of us approach our dreams backwards. We think we have to “figure out” what to do in order to get what we want.We think action is required and that is what we focus on. But if we never check in on how that action feels, we sp;in our wheels frustrating ourselves to the point where we often give up – or at least go at it the hard way. Things go much smoother and manifest more quickly when we first get our vibration lined up (by thinking right thoughts and feeling good) and then taking inspired action.

Combining the power of right thought and inspired action allows us to have wonderful manifestations in our lives.



Buddha once said: “What we are today comes from our thoughts of yesterday and our present thoughts build our life of tomorrow. Our life is the creation of our mind”

The power of thought is the greatest power that man possesses. The present day luxuries are the consequences of mankind’s collective thinking. We are the architects of our own life and the onus is on us to build a mansion or be satisfied with the rubble. Each individual is what he is today because of his thought process. We humans are blessed with the cognitive abilities and thinking is what differenciates us from the brutes. The intellectual philosophy of “existentialism” propounded by some of the great philosophers of the 18th and 19th century like Kierkegaard and Frederick Nietzsche states that man exists and in that existence man defines himself and the world in his own subjectivity, and wanders between choice, freedom, and existential angst. For these intellectual giants, the powers of their thoughts have forced them to question their own existence. Their existential angst is beautifully paraphrased by Rene Descartes’ (a great Greek philosopher) famous postulate “Cogito Ergosm” which translates as “I think. Therefore I exist”

What is a thought ? For lexicographers it means an idea, an instance of thinking or to be even more precise “a state or condition of thinking”. Our brain is a super computer consistently assimilating data and correlating it and structuring it in the form of a thought. Studies on brain activities reveal that a deep thinker may encounter around 50000 thoughts per day. About 100 years ago this figure was around 5000. But today there is information galore and our brain is constantly trying to process it. He may think about how it is being prepared and the probable side effects after consuming it. He may rationalize and decide whether to have it or not. Our thoughts are greatly affected by the way we perceive this world.

We have the conscious mind and the sub conscious mind. The conscious mind gathers knowledge and exp;erience through the senses. It learns from books, conversation and experience. This reservoir of knowledge and experience is then passed down into the subconscious mind. The subconscious mind is the mind of action. It is responsible for all that we do. It is the seat of memory and of instinct. It is a repertoire of tremendous power and extraordinary intelligence and carries out complicated processes in our body which makes life possible.

As we walk along, the seashore our fet leaves an imprint on the sand. In a similar way, every experience leaves a mark in our mind which arguable moulds our thinking prowess. These accumulated experiences have got a profound ramification on our actions. Most of our actions are guided by our thoughts. Every thought is a seed. It is upto us to allow it to germinate or relegate it to the deepest recess of our mind.

Fostering the right thoughts is very important because it influences our action, builds up character and develops a steadfast mind. There are two sections of people out there. One who overcomes life and the other who is overcome by life. Those who are able to control their thoughts and exercise their negative emotions will triumph over life’s difficulties. Those who succumb to their emotions will always be bogged down with life’s inequities.

There is a misconception that it is difficult to regulate our thoughts. But the truth is we can control and regulate our thoughts in the same way a traffic policeman controls the traffic on a rush day. Undesirable and destructive thoughts should be arrested while constructive thoughts need to be encouraged. Sometimes as we change the topic of our conversation, we need to change the focus of our thoughts too to streamline our thinking prowess.

There is a very interesting exercise which is often done in Business Schools to reiterate the link between thought and action. The instructor provides each of the team members with one inflated balloon and one pin. Then he will announce that whoever is left with the balloon intact will be the winner. Soon there will be a flurry of activities with each participant trying to burse the other person’s balloon. The end result is that, no one will be left with any balloons. The learning from this exercise obviously is that we tend to succumb to our thoughts/emotions. When the instructor announced that the winner will be the one left with the balloon intact, the participants construed that they need to burst the balloons of others to come first. This is mob behaviour. Instead of bursting the balloons of others, they could have simply protected their own balloons. This is a classic example of a thought determining the course of action.

To find yourself, think for yourself – said Socrates

When Arjuna geared up; to fight the kauravas, he became insipid after seeing his gurus as part of the enemy force. This sapped his energy and confidence and pushed him to leave the battle field. It was up to Krishna to explain to him about the rationale of this war and how his actions are going to be justified. The entire – Bhagawath Gita dwells on this profound philosophy of finding over true self. We need to constantly introspect and churn out the disproportionate thoughts that lead us to doom. Our negativities should be decided and replaced with an engulfing radiance of love and compassion which will rejuvenate us and the world around us.

What differentiates success from failure ? Why do some people succeed while others are pushed down the echelons of failure ? Is there a success formula ? The answer to these intriguing questions lies in the type of mind one possesses. A successful person always thinks in terms of achievement, prosperity and growth. They exude positive vibes and nurture positive thoughts. Their motto is always service and cooperation

By training ourselves to think thoughts of goodwill instead of hate and resentment, of cooperation instead of selfish acquisitiveness, of service rather than personal gain, we will be able to reflect these wonderful notions as actions that benefit humanity and mankind.







The moment you are in tension
You will lose your attention
Then you are in total confusion
And you will feel irritation
Then you will spoil personal relation
Ultimately you won’t get cooperation
Then you will make things complication
Then your BP may also rise caution
And you may have to take medication
Instead, under the situation
And try to think about the solution
Many problems will be solved by discussion
Which will work out better in your profession
Don’t think its my free suggestion
It is only for your prevention
If you understand my intention
You will never come again to tension


We may all have heard the story of the Hare and the Tortoise. The moral of the story was “Slow and Steady wins the race”

The hare which was disappointed at losing the race did some thinking. He realised that he had lost the race only because he had been over confident, careless and lazy. Had he not taken things for granted, there is no way that the tortoise could have beaten him. So, he challenged the tortoise for another race. This time, the hare ran without stopping from start to finish and won the race.
The moral of the story now stands modified to “While it is good to be slow and steady, it is better tobe fast and consistent”

It was the turn of the tortoise to do some thinking. The tortoise realized that he could not beat the hare in the race the way it was formatted. He did some thinking and challenged the hare to another race but on a slightly different route. The hare took off and ran at top speed, in keeping with his self commitment until he came to a river. The finish line was a couple of kilometers on the other side of the river. The hare sat wondering what to do. In the meantime, the tortoise reached the river, swam to the opposite bank and finished the race. The moral of the story will now be “First identify your core competency and then change the playing field to suit your core competency”

By this time, the hare and the tortoise became good friends and they did some thinking together. Both realized that they could race for mutual advantage

So, they decided to run the race again, but this time, as a team. Thus, they started off with the hare carrying the tortoise till the river bank. Then, the tortoise took over and swam across the river with the hare on his back. On the opposite side, the hare again carried the tortoise and together, they reached the finishing line. They both felt a great sense of happiness, satisfaction and success. The final moral of the story is – “It is good to be individually motivated and to have skills/core competencies, but, unless you are able to work as a team and harness each others’ core competencies, you will always perform below par”

In short it can be said – working together works.

While all employees in an organization work as a team, harnessing the skills/competencies/potentials of each other to perform is found better.


Tai Chi or Tai Chi Chuan as it is popularly known is a form of traditional Chinese “Soft” Martial arts. The word Tai Chi Chuan in Chinese means “Supreme Ultimate Force”. The notion of “Supreme Ultimate” is often associated with the Chinese concept of the “Ying” and the “Yang” (the positive and the negative energies ) which speaks about a dynamic duality in all the things that we see around us.

Tai Chi, as it is practiced in the west today, can perhaps best the thought of as a moving form of yoga and meditation combined. There are a number of so-called forms (sometimes also called ‘sets’) which consist of a sequence of movements. Many of these movements are originally derived from the martial arts (and perhaps even more ancestrally than that, from the natural movements of animals and birds) although the way they are performed in Tai Chi is slowly, softly and gracefully with smooth and even transitions between them.

In Chinese philosophy and medicine there exists the concept of “chi”, a vital force that animates the body. One of the avowed aims of Tai Chi is to foster the circulation of this ‘chi’ within the body, the belief being that by doing so the health and vitality of the person are enhanced. This ‘chi’ circulates in patterns that are closely related to the nervous and vascular system and thus the notion is closely connected with that of the practice of acupuncture and other oriental healing arts.

Another aim of Tai Chi is to foster a calm and tranquil mind, focused on the precise execution of these exercises. Learning to do them correctly provides a practical avenue for learning about such things as balance, alignment, fine scale motor control, rhythm of movement, the genesis of movement from the body’s vital center, and so on.

As it closely resembles dance movements, Tai Chi is often referred to as the ultimate “Dance of Life”



“Survive to serve” was the clarion call. Prejudice comes only from the side which you do not know. It is fear of making a mistake that makes prejudice. Get rid of this fear if you wish to serve. Asserted the speaker

One of the common drawbacks in us is our reluctance to accept our ignorance. We don’t agree that we don’t know.

What causes sorrows ? Dr Rudran clarifies “that which is loved, will not cause you anxiety. Anxiety arises because of not loving. If any conflict arises, it tends to create stress, and when your views are not accepted it leads to sorrow and irritation.

What then is the way out ? Quoting the saying of Sri Ramakrishna Paramahansa, the speaker clarified that life is like tongue amidst 32 teeth. It requires enormous skill, endurance and tactics to live amongst evil forces. We cannot get rid of them, instead we must learn to live with them tactfully. The concept is based on Ramayana, where Vibheeshana is seen to be leading a noble the amidst many asuras. Compromise is not absolute. In fact, it is misnomer. Compromise should be renamed as accepting the presence.




Stress – what ?

Simply put ”stress makes us sick”. Slow accumulation of stress, leads to diseases. Factors like meeting deadlines, inadequate sleep, emotional turmoil, psychological characteristics, etc., can affect us physiologically and psychologically. Heart strokes, diabetes, ulcers, cholesterol etc., are the results of psychological and physiological events. It requires physiological adaptations and excellent stress response mechanism to survive in extremely stressful situations.

Lack of sleep and heart diseases – some research findings:

Complete and partial lack of sleep increased the blood concentration of high sensitivity, C- reactive protein – the strongest predictor of heart attacks
Just one night of sleep loss increases very toxic substances in body and they increase risks of many medical conditions, including cancer, arthritis and heart disease.
Sleeping for less than 5 hours per night leads to 39% increase in heart disease

Sleep is composed of two stages:
REM – (Rapid Eye Movement) and non-REM. The former helps in mental consolidation while the latter helps in physical repair and rebuilding. During the night, we alternate between REM and non-REM stages 4-5 times. The earlier part of sleep; is mostly non-REM. During that period, our pituitary gland releases growth hormones that repair our body. The latter part of sleep is more of REM type.

Situations, when people get cumulative ill effects of stress (few examples)
Feeling of getting forced to meet deadlines very frequently
Lack of sleep, for many days
Lack of work-life balances for long
Unmanaged and long duration of worries, frustrations, negative emotions like, jealousy, anger, depression, hopelessness etc.
Lack of “feel-good factor”

We need to have a holistic view of life. We can ask few pertinent questions to ourselves, like for how many years, I am going to live, what is the purpose of my life, how would I like to be remembered by people around me or the world after die. If we sincerely probe ourselves with these questions, we are going to get very useful answers and have “balance in life - between professional, family and personal”, as mentioned in The Gita. Then only the poem of Rabindranath Tagore – “Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high” – will make sense to us.

::Excerpts from “Strress-from burnout to balance” by Vinay Joshi.




Your past performances construct your self-image. Only when your self-image is healthy, you find the motivation to further unearth your potential, which manifests as performances. Performances in turn contribute to your self-image. The cycle continues. However, if your self image is dented and tarnished, you lack the motivation to unearth your potential. So you move into inaction, self-pity and start building a feeling of inferiority about yourself. Your performances reflect the sum total of what your future can be

If performance, self image and unearthed potential form a cycle, we know that a cycle can begin from anywhere. We can define our own starting point. Performances are of the past and potential is of the future. The present is “self-image” and we can do something about it. So let us take “self-image” as the starting point of our life cycle and build a healthy, positive self-image about ourselves and create the life that we deserve. How to go about it ? Here are a few ways.

Develop the attitude to count your blessings and stop counting your troubles. Your birth as a healthy human being, not languishing in poverty, being a literate, having people to cry with and cry for, living in a peaceful land, etc are all blessings. Harold Abbot put it this way: “I had the blues because I had no shoes, until upon the street I met a man who had no feet”

Dress up neatly and walk confidently. Till you have a personality, wear your personality and you will succeed in painting a better picture of yourself. Never go to sleep, however lat it may be, until you read something thought – provoking. Shun the company of negative people. Or, at least refuse to assign any value to their comments. Right company builds the muscles of your self-image.

Develop a taste for success. Feed yourself with small challenges and repeatedly taste success. Every string of success will strengthen the rope called self-image. The more and more your outlook towards the rest of the world becomes positive, the more and more you will be able to look at yourself positively.

A man who has never failed has never tried. Failure is an event and it is not you. A defeat should not defeat the personality. Failures are mere lessons learnt. Please do not allow it to scratch your self image

In your world and your life, you are the best thing to have happened. Live up to the glory of being the one and only of your kind.




01. Noone can insult or hurt you without your permission. One of the golden keys to happiness and great success is the way you interpret events which unfold before you. Highly successful people are master interpreters. People who have attained greatness have an ability which they have developed to interpret negative or disempowering events as positive challenges which will assist them in growing and moving even farther up the ladder of success. There are no negative experiences only experiences which aid in your development and toughen your character so that you may soar to new heights. There are no failures, only lessons.

02. Take a speed reading course. Reading is a powerful way to gain many years of experience from a few hours of study. For example, most biographies reflect the strategies and philosophies of great leaders or courageous individuals. Read them and model them. Speed reading will allow you to digest large quantities of material in relatively small periods of time.

03. Remember people’s names and treat everyone well. This habit, along with enthusiasm, is one of the great success secrets. Everyone in this world wears an imaginary button that screams out “I want to feel important and appreciated”

04. Be soft as a flower when it comes to kindness but tough as thunder when it comes to principle. Be courteous and polite at all times but never be pushed around. Ensure that you are always treated with respect.

05. Never discuss your health, wealth and other personal matters with anyone outside of your immediate family. Be very disciplined in this regard..

06. Be truthful, patient, persevering, modest and generous

07. Soak in a warm bath at the end of a long, productive day. Reward yourself for even the smallest of achievement. Take time out for renewal of your mind, body and spirit. Soon all your more important goals will be met and you will move to the next level of peak performance.

08. Learn the power of breathing and its relationship with your energy source. The mind is intimately connected with your breathing. For example, when the mind is agitated, your breathing becomes quick and shallow. When you are relaxed and focused, your breathing is deep and calm. By practicing deep, abdominal breathing, you will develop a calm, serene demeanour that will remain cool in the hottest of circumstances. Remember the rule of the Eastern Mountain men: “To breathe properly is to live properly”

09. Recognise and cultivate the power of auto suggestion. It works and is an essential tool in maintaining peak performance. We are all performers in one way or another and it is particularly valuable to use such techniques of athletes and public figures for our own enhancement. If you want to become more enthusiastic, repeat “I am more enthusiastic today and am improving this trait daily” Repeat it over and over. Purchase a legal notepad and write out this mantra 500 times . Do it for three weeks with regular practice and feel that this quality is developing. Very soon it will come. This is a strategy that Indian sages have employed for thousands of years to aid their spiritual and mental development. Do not be discouraged if the results are not immediate, they will certainly develop. The spoken word is a powerful influencer of the mind.

10. Maintain a diary to measure your progress and to express your thoughts. Writing out not only your successes but your troubles is one of the world’s most effective methods of erasing the worry habit , staying in optimum state and developing precision of thought.




A group of children were playing near two railway tracks, one still in use while the other disused. Only one child played on the disused track, the rest on the operationalo track.

The train is coming and you are just beside the track interchange. You can make the train change its course to the disused track and save most of the kids. However, that would also mean the lone child playing by the disused track would be sacrificed. Or would you rather let the train go its way ?

Let us take a pause to think what kind of decision we could make..

Most people might choose to divert the course of the train, and sacrifice only one child. You might think the same way, I guess. Exactly, to save most of the children at the expense of only one child was rational decision most people would make, morally and emotionally. But have you ever thought that the child choosing to play on the disused track had in fact made the right decision to play at a safe place ?

Nevertheless, he had to be sacrificed because of his ignorant friends who chose to play where the danger was. This kind of dilemma happens around us everyday. In the office, community, in politics and especially in a democratic society, the minority is often sacrificed for the interest of the majority no matter how foolish or ignorant the majority are, and how farsighted and knowledgeable the minority are. The child who chose not to play with the rest on the operational track was sidelined. And in the case he was sacrificed, no one would shed a tear for him.

The great critic Leo Velski Julian as well as Sourav who told the story said he would not try to change the course of the train because he believed that the kids playing on the op;erational track should have known very well that track was still in use, and that they should have run away if they heard the train’s sirens. If the train was diverted, that lone child would definitely die because he never thought the train could come over to that track. Moreover, that track was not in use probably because it was not safe. If the train was diverted to the tack, we could put the lives of all passengers on board at stake. And in your attempt to save a few kids by sacrificing one child, you might end up sacrificing hundreds of people to save these few kids.

While we are all aware that life is full of tough decisions that need to be made, we may not realise that hasty decisions may not always be the right one






Imagine a quill floating in the wind. As the wind changes its direction the quill does a pirouette and dances to its rhythmic cadence. It loses its identify and becomes one with the wind. An expert glider uses this unprecdictability of the wind to do amazing feats in the air. The quill and the glider may be carried to longer distance and greater heights by being in total congruity with the wind. Life is like that. We just cannot predict what is around the corner. We may falter at the biquitous inequities that the life poses. We may fail to reach the altar of success. To keep pace with its subtle nuances and surprises, we need to learn to dance to its tune. Find the rhythm that suits us, do the leg work properly and enjoy the dance.

What does finding our own rhythm mean ? There are a million things in this world which may affect a million people in million ways. For A R Rahman, music is the road to salvation. When he sees a keyboard he sees god. When he touches it, he feels god. But for may others, it will just remain a collage of keys with no significance. A piece of music/a beautiful song is already there in the guitar. Only a maestro can elicit that melody from the six innocuous strings. A true sculptor can see the image/sculpture in a rotund rock, while a nonchalant passer by may blissfully fail to see the creation. Everything depends on the level of resonance that we have achieved with ourselves and the things that surround us. If we listen closely, we can hear our own heart beat. There is a beautiful rhythm to it. When we succumb to the malice and the negativities around us, we can sense the rhythm changing. Finding the perfect rhythm is about knowing our brain, our body our mind and bringing the three into unison.

It is said that when soldiers march over the bridge, they break the rhythm because the resonance they build otherwise is huge enough to destroy the bridge. In a similar way the intonation of the reasonance that we build in ourselves in conjugation with nature is powerful enough to flush out the negativities and usher in a feeling of endearing happiness.
The Sufis dance and spin their way to nirvana. The disciples of Bhagavan Rajaneesh forget their surroundings, when they dance to attain eternal bliss. The rhythm of life is a powerful beat and it instigates us to dance, to sing, to breathe and to be passionate. But we take each step with lot of trepidation. We do not involve fully in the things that we do. We give, but with compunction. We learn, but without conviction.

We need to learn the rhythm of life as we grow. We need to feel/listen to the rhythm of other people, the rhythm that nourished our parents, our grand parents, our ancestors down the ages and understand their stories and the struggles to give shape and purpose to our own dance. As we start experiencing our own rhythm, we will find the beauty of the rhythm in others – other individuals, other cultures, other traditions and realize that the rhythm of life is a cosmic ballet in which we all play a tiny but immensely integral part.




Psychological resilence is the capacity to respond quickly and constructively to crises. But resilence can be hard to muster for many reasons. Fear, anger and confusion can paralyse us after a severe setback. Assigning blame rather than generating solutions is an all-too-human tendency. Worse yet, those to whom we turn for counsel may offer us exactly the wrong kind of advice.

Decades of research in psychology, on topics including hardiness, learned helplessness, coping and the correlation between cognitive style and health, confirms that each of us has a distinct, consistent pattern of thinking about life’s twists and turns a pattern of which most of us are largely unaware. It may be an unconscious reflex to look backward from traumatic incidents to explain what just happened. Such analysis can be useful, certainly but only up to the point where strong negative emotions start to prevent our moving on.

We believe that managers can build high levels of reslience in themselves and their teams by taking charge of how they think about adversity. Resilent managers move quickly from analysis to a plan of action (and action). After the onset of adversity, they shift from cause-oriented thinking to response-oriented thinking and their focus is strictly forward.

When adversity strikes:
Most of us go with our gut when something bad happens. Deeply ingrained habits and beliefs sap our energy and keep us from acting constructively. People commonly fall into one of two emotional traps. One is deflation. Someone who has marched steadily through a string of success can easily come to feel like a hero, able to fix any problem singlehandedly. A traumatic event can snap that person back to reality. Even for the less heroic among us, adversity can touch off intense bursts of negative emotion as if a dark cloud had settled behind our eyes, as one manager described it. We may feel disappointed in ourselves or others, mistreated and dispirited, even besieged.

The other emotional trap is victimization. Many of us assume the role of a helpless bystander in the face of an adverse event. “Those people” have put us in an unfortunate position, we tell ourselves (and others) again and again. We dismiss both criticism and helpful suggestions from others and go out of our way to affirm that we are right, everyone else is wrong, and no one understands us. Meanwhile, self-doubt may creep in, making us feel hopelessly constrained by circumstances.

Highly accomplished managers are confronting, in rapid succession, challenges the likes of which they have never seen before a world wide economic crisis, the globalization of business, the rise of new technologies, deep; demograp;hic shifts. Feeling discouraged and helpless, they turn away from the problem and unfortunately, from people who might be able to help. Even if these managers went to their bosses for guidance, they’d most likely receive inadequate coaching. That is because most supervisors, riding their own long wave of hard-won successes, lack the empathy to intervene effectively. They may not know how to counsel direct reports they feel are not quite as talented as they were at escaping the shadow of defeat. They may be so well accustomed to handling adversity in ways that minimize their psychological stress that they don’t recognize their own bad habits.

Independent studies in psychology and our own observations suggest that the ability to bounce back from adversity hinges on uncovering and untangling one’s implicit beliefs about it and shifting how one responds.

Most of us, when we experience difficult episode, make quick assumptions about its causes, magnitude, consequences and duration. We instantly decide, for example, whether it was inevitable, a function of forces beyond our control, or whether we could somehow have prevented it. Managers need to shift from this kind of reflexive thinking to “active” thinking about how best to respond, asking themselves what aspects they can control, what impact they can have, and how the breadth and duration of the crisis might be contained. Three types of questions can help them make this shift.

Specifying questions help managers identify ways to intervene; the more specific the answers, the better. Visualising questions help shift their attention away from the adverse event and toward a more positive outcome. Collaborating questions push them to reach out to others – not a affirmation or commiseration but for joint problem solving. Each type of question can clarify each of the four lenses of resilent thinking.

Taken together, the four sets make up the reslience regimen.

To strengthen their resilence, managers need to shift from reflexive, cause-oriented thinking to active, response-oriented thinking.

Answering the questions:
CONTROL: - was this adverse event inevitable, or could I have prevented it ?
What features of the situation can I (even potentially) improve ?
IMPACT: Did I cause the adverse event, or did it result from external forces ?
What sort of positive impact can I personally have on what happens next ?
BREADTH: Is the underlying cause of this event specific to it or more widespread ?
How can I contain the negatives sof the situation and generate currently unseen positives ?
DURATION: Is the underlying cause of this event enduring or temporary ?
What can I do begin addressing the problem now ?

Al though the question sets offer a useful framework for refraining manager’s responses, simply knowing what to ask is not enough. You won’t become more resilent simply because you have read this far and have made a mental note to pull these questions the next time a destabilizing difficulty strikes. To strengthen your capacity for resilence, you need to internalize the questions by following two simple precepts:

Various studies on stress and coping with trauma demonstrate that the act of writing about difficult episodes can enhance an individual’s emotional and physical well-being. Indeed, writing offers people command over an adverse situation in a way that merely thinking about it does not. Instead of ruminating about events, letting them interrupt your work, you will have solutions in the making.

Under ongoing duress, executives’ capacity for resilence is critical to to maintaining their mental and physical health. Paradoxically, however, buildihg reslience is best down precisely when times are most difficult when we face the most upending challenges, when we are at the greatest risk of misfiring with our reactions, when we are blindest to the opportunities presented. All the more reason, then, to use the reslience regimen to tamp down unproductive responses to adversity, replace negatively with creativity and resourcefulness and get things done despite real or perceived obstacles.





A positive “Work Life Balance” is a term that refers to an individual’s perception of the degree to which she is experiencing positive relationships between work and family, where the relationships are viewed as compatible and at equilibrium with each other. Individual condition is like a fulcrum shifting weights of time and energy allocation between work and family life, the term, “work-family-balance”, provides a metaphor to contest the historical belief that work and family relationships can often be competing, at odds, and conflicting.

There is no doubt that finding a balance between work and family in today’s competitive work environment is not an easy task. Not very long back, we were terming work-life balance as a “Western” problem and India would never be affected by it. But the employees in the country are now struggling with the inevitable effect of all work and no play. As an individual, on the one hand, the drive is to keep up with the workload, to go up the corporate ladder and prove oneself. While on the other side it is the demand for quality time with family and friends, which ultimately results in fatigue, missed milestones, frustration and sense of incompleteness. For the ‘We want it all” generation, this delicate see-saw to reduce stress and maintain harmony is an ongoing challenge.

So whether the problem is too much focus on work or too little, the feeling that our work life and personal life are not jelling together creates stress and its harmful side effects. Ultimately, work-life balance depends on individual choices. It requires each employee to examine one’s priorities and set boundaries. Above all, it is the awareness that balance does not mean doing everything, everytime.

Traditionally, researchers have assumed a “win-lose” relationship between work and family and focused on “work-family-conflict”, based on the belief that individuals have limited time and resources to allocate to their many life roles. Sometime, it is difficult for the individual to match both work and family life and thus crating an inter-role conflict where work and family roles are incompatible and seem as competing for an individual’s time, energy, and behaviours on and off the job.




Father: I want you to marry a girl of my choice

Son: I will choose my own bride

Father: But the girl is Brad Gates’ daughter

Son: Well, in that case, OK

Next day father approaches Brad Gates

Father: I have husband for your daughter

Gates: But my daughter is too young to marry

Father: But this young man is a Vice President of the World Development Bank

Gates: Ah, in that case, OK

Finally father goes to se the President of the World Development Bank

Father: I have a young man to be recommended as a Vice President

President: But I already have more Vice Presidents than I need

Father: But this young man is Brad Gates’ Son-in-law

President: Ah, in that case.. OK

This is how business is done..




Personality style type
Probable behaviours
The Driver
The person in motion, the “workaholic” and over-achiever who nurses the fear that he is worthless
The controller
The person who dislikes surprises, spontaneity and does not show his feelings because all of these “human” qualities are often uncontrollable and ungodlike
The Gentler
The person who feels he is entitled to everything in life and everyone around him. Thus he actively or passively puts others in his services to help him get what he wants
The Aginner
The person who actively or passively opposes everything that life demands of him. Rather than offering positive alternative actions or ideas, he endeavours to get revenge or put down the other
The Victim
The person who innocently or actively p;ursues the vocation of “disaster chaser”. Everything “happens” to this individual
The martyr
The person who pursues the vocation of “injustice collector and who is ready to die for a cause.”He may openly or privately endure suffering
The inadequate one
The person who acts as though everything he touches or does will self-destruct. Thus, he is sure to fall when given a responsibility and usually ends up putting others into his service. An underachiever
The excitement seeker
The person who despises routine and seeks sout the novel experiences in life. He endeavours to stimulate excitement when life appears to be dull. Alone or in league with others, he will engage in spontaneous and often senseless behaviours. Sometimes, these behaviours are unprovoked crimes against property or persons
The Right one
The person who elevates himself above others whom he arranges to perceive as being in the wrong. He avoids error like the plague and will rationalize his way out of an actual error, convincing you that you are wronger than he is
The good one
The person who constantly lives by higher moral standards than others. He cannot forgive or forget and constantly blames and reminds you of your shortcomings




“Because a manager can profit both from the ideas and from the discipline of mind by which they are formulated – Alan M. Kantrove”

Mention the name of Peter Drucker and many an ear in the business forest stands up straight. Over the years little of concern to bysiness has fallen outside the extraordinary range of his interests, and few of those interests have escaped thoughtful, often classic exposition in his six-foot shelf of articles and books.

Such productivity is itself a professional achievement of the first order. Add to it, however, Drucker’s countless appearances in executive seminars, lecture halls, conference rooms, and classrooms; his extensive labors as a consultant; and his facility for expressing complex ideas simply and elegantly. No wonder the mention of Peter Drucker commonly guarantees attention. People listen because they respect the authority of experience – distilled, analysed, articulate and are eager to profit by it.

There are those, of course, who do not listen so attentively to Drucker. Some, especially within the academy, think him more journalist than scholar and more glib generaliser than journalist. They slight his research as no research at all and his ideas on management as unstructured and (worst sin of all) unsystematic. To their minds Drucker is an armchair philosopher who lacks practical credentials as a doer.

At one extreme they believe him neither interested nor competent on the myriad details of day-to-day business operations and therefore question the authority his judgments regularly carry.

At the other extreme Drucker’s most attentive followers, like those of many a populare thinker, grant him too much. Out-of-context snippets from his writings or conversations often app;ear in support or conversations often appear in support of contentions that he himself does not endorse. Similarly, overly ardent disciples reduce the complexity of his thought to a handful of canomical ideas that, in their doctrinaire simplicity, do violence to the original.
In point of fact, Drucker’s works lend themselves to these excesses of reaction. By relying in places on such suggestive – but incompletely wrought notions as the “contribution coefficient”. Drucker offers fertile ground for scholarly naysaying. Conversely, by striving for a pithy, ep;igrammatical style, he often plays into the hands of those who are too easily satisfied with easy phrases and hall-truths. Indeed, it is rhetorically memorable to assert, as Drucker does, that “most sales training is totally unjustified. At best it makes an incompetent salesman out of a moron”. But it also gives ready encouragement to the cavalier dismissal of a perennially knotty problem.

Sloganeering of either sort, wherever it occurs, is double-edged. Used with care, it allows for a quick, incisive thrust of thought; in the wrong hands, it becomes an effective weapon of simple or fuzzy mindedness.

The influence of ideas:
For the most part, however, Drucker’s books command attention neither for their stock of aphorisms nor for their mastery of technical computation. Ears perk up, rather, to catch the wisdom of Drucker’s animating ideas. So generally, receptive has their audience been and also longlived their influence that many of his ideas have become part and parcel of today’s commonsense understanding of business. As a result, it is snot easy even in retrospect to achieve critical distance from them.

How remarkably familiar has become his vision of modern industrial society as constituted by large-scale organizations. How obvious it now seems to regard business as the representative institution of that society, and how matter-of-fact an exercise it now is to apply to business the same models of analysis appropriate to any social or political institution.

Was there a time when people did not regularly ask of individual businesses their source of legitimate authority, their principle of organization, or their pattern of leadership ? Was there a time when management felt little need to address employees’ concerns for status and function, to fit “knowledge workers” into established structures of decision making and command, or to achieve effective communication in and among managerial levels ?

For that matter, did business ever fail to take seriously the recruitment and development of executives, the proper role of boards of directors, or the special needs of companies at different stages of development ? Did it fail to pay adequate attention to the internal logic of work itself or to those techniques by which managers can become both more efficient and more effective ? Did it ignore such fundamental questions as the nature of the business it was in and of the customers it served ?

Today it is hardly frontpage news, at least within the business community, when some executive offers a defense of profits as an objective measurement of economic performance or as an essential premium against the risks of the future. Nor is it shocking to hear a call for management to think through long-term strategy as well as to set short-term objectives. A voice recommending that business plan for innovation is no longer a voice crying out in the wilderness. That non of this seems novel – that it is all quit commonplace – is prime evidence of Drucker’s pervasive influence, direct or indirect, on managerial thought. By and large these ideas have long since won acceptance as kind of professional folk, wisdom. They have become home truths.

Drucker’s contribution:

To be sure, few of these ideas are original with Drucker. Even fewer have escaped treatment in at least a dozen management texts. Yet there is always a value in reencountering sensible thought sensibly put. But if the substance of his books is neither original nor unique, if what they offer at best is no more or less than the readily paraphrasable content of his thinking, why bother to read them ? Why, in short, read Peter Drucker and not a streamlined digest of his major ideas ?

The answer is simple: Drucker’s real contribution to managerial understanding lies not so much in the cash value of his ideas as in the rigorous activity of mind by which they are formulated. One can learn more and more deeply from watching him think than from studying the content of his thought.

Integration of thought:
Most critics assess the substantive contribution of Drucker’s works to the discipline of professional management. Yet Drucker’s thought is far more valuable for its manner than its matter. First, there is its decidedly integrative quality. To understand essential management tasks. Drucker shows by example that it is necessary to view them in context. One must appreciate the historicaluniverse of traditions and structures out of which they emerged and the culturaluniverse of norms and values in which they participate. One must know about the many forms capitalism has taken over time and the particular strengths of each form. One must be aware of competing economic ideologies and their underlying premises. In short, one must be able to recognize major shifts inhuman aspirations as well as the fixed limits of human adaptation.

Then, too, one must be sensitive to the speed, direction, and logic to those technological and demographic changes that will make the future very different form the present. One must, at the same time, carefully ascertain what in the present will last. Not least, one must supplement an understanding of management with insights from other fields of knowledge, regularly comparing it with the summary experience of other large-scale organizations and different cultures

When brought to bear on even the thorniest of problems, such integrative thinking allows Drucker to identify the key assumptions at issue, to establish their mutual relations, and to evaluate them. Consider, for instance, his lengthy discussion of the curse of bigness in Concept of the Corporation. Here Drucker avoids the needless excesses of those who argue either for or against bigness in business by tracing their operative premise to its root and showing it to be grossly misconceived.

Consciously or not, most opponents of bigness, Drucker finds, are in fact tilting against the windmills of monopoly; its defenders, protecting them. Now, monopoly and bigness are, of course, not the same thing and ought not be confused. But Drucker is able to track the point of issue still further to challenge its historical as well as its logical basis. “This theory of monopoly”, he writes, “which is still widely accepted as gospel truth, rests on the assumption – correct in the eighteenth century – that supply will always be limited, whereas demand will always be unlimited”.

This assumption does not always obtain. It may be true of some, but is not necessarily true of all, historical periods. Because Drucker knows the traditional meaning of monopoly and the structural differences between past and present economic conditions, he can refocus an errant discussion.

Other examples suggest themselves. In The End of Economic Man, Drucker comprehends the sense behind the seeming irrationality of fascism’s appeal by acknowledging the historical context of its ideas. According to Drucker the Great War and the Great Depression destroyed Europe’s already shaken belief in an economic system that was autonomous, governed by rational laws, and productive of both freedom and equality. With the inherited rational world view of classical economics shown to be bankrupt, fascism took powerful hold on the Europian mind precisely because it was “irrational” – that is, it offered a non economic basis for individual status and rank. Drucker reaches the heart of this twentieth-century phenomenon by appreciating the sudden irrelevance of earlier systems of thought. A similar understanding characterizes his many obiter dicta on Marxism as well as his famous essay on John Maynard Keyness. Drucker writes:

“Keynes’ work was buildon the realization that the fundamental assumptions of nineteenth-century laissex faire economics no longer hold true in an industrial society and a credit economy. But is aimed at the restoration and preservation of the basic beliefs, the basic institutions of nineteenth century laissez fair politics, above all, it aimed at the preservation of the autonomy and automatism of the market. The two could no longer be brought together in a rational system; Keynes’s policies are magic spells, formulae, and incanitations, tomake the admittedly irrational behave rationally”.

Much the same is true of Marx’s thought , which treats as a universal given conditions limited to a brief phase of industrial development.

(Excerpted from the book titled – Becoming a manager by Linda A Hill)



A boy was watching his grandmother write a letter. At one point he asked: “Are you writing a story about what we have done?. Is it a story about me?” His grandmother stopped writing her letter and said to her grandson: “ I am writing about you, actually, but more important than the words is the pencil I amusing. I hope you will be like this pencil when you grow up;.”

Intrigued, the boy looked at the pencil. It did not seem very special. It was just like any other pencil he has ever seen. The grandmother then said that though the pencil looks very simple, it is endowed with five qualities – which if you can manage to hang on will make you a person who is always at peace with the world

FIRST QUALITY: You are capable of great things, but you must never forget that there is a hand guiding your steps. We call that hand God, and he always guides us according to his will.

SECOND QUALITY: Now and then we have to stop writing and use a sharpener. That makes the pencil suffer a little, but afterwards, he is much sharper. So you too must learn to bear certain pains and sorrows, because that will make you a better person

THIRD QUALITY: The pencil always allows us to use an eraser to rub out any mistakes. This means that correcting something we did is not necessarily a bad thing, it helps to keep us on the road to justice

FOURTH QUALITY: What really matters in a pencil is not its wooden exterior, but the graphite inside. So always pay attention to what is happening inside you.

Finally the pencil’s FIFTH QUALITY: It always leaves a mark. In just the same way, you should know that everything you do in life will leave a mark.

So try to be conscious of that in your every action




It is said that the Eagle has got an uncanny knack to sense an approaching storm. It will fly to a vantage point and wait for the winds to come. When the storm hits, the eagle will set its wings so that the wind will pick it up and life it above the storm. While the storm rages below, the eagle will be soaring above it. In fact the eagle does not try to escape the storm. It uses the storm to catapult itself to the nimbus of glory. Many a times in our lives se will be confronted with similar debilitating storms. Are we able to become like the Eagle and use the storm to our advantage ? Or do we let the storms to overpower us ? Success lies in our ability to anticipate the impending storms and navigate it to our benefit when it strikes.

To think positively in a crisis is a challenge. But great leaders and visionaries capitalize on crisis and see it as an opportunity to develop; and enhance their survival/leadership skills. Victor Franki, a renowned Austrian Psychiatrist, through his revolutionary book – Man’s search for meaning” explains the significance of having a perpetual powerful vision to guide us in our lives. When he was subjected to the “Concentration camps” ( a gruesome methodology adopted by Adolf Hitler to wipe out the disaspora of Jews) at Auschwitz during the period from 1942-1945, he thought his world has come to an end. But under this ghastly and bestial of human existence, Victor Franki conceptualized an agenda and a vision to pull him through these torturous days. He decided this unavoidable suffering and use it to help mankind. These self inquisitions led him to develop a revolutionary theory in Psychoterapy known as – Logotherapy. It is about finding a personal meaning in life, however dismal the circumstances may be. Because of his powerful vision, Victor Franki did survive the holocaust and was later conferred with 29 honorary doctorates from universities across the globe for works on Existential Analysis and Logotherapy. It is not the burdens of life that weigh us down but it is how we handle them.

A dream is a mere notion. But when we convert it into a vision and work towards achieving it, it becomes a reality. A powerful vision is like the beacon of light on a dark hazy night. It cuts through the nebulous fog and shows us the way. BY constantly being aware of our environment and our competitors and by having a powerful personal vision, we can become like the majestic eagle which knows where it is headed even in the middle of storm.

Remember, the whole world steps aside for a person who knows where he is going.

“We are not limited by our abilities but by our vision – anonymous”



People are often unreasonable,
Irrational, and self-centered;
Forgive them any way.

If you are kind, people may accuse
You of selfish, ulterior motives;
Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some
Unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies;
Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and sincere
People may deceive you;
Be honest and sincere anyway;

What you spend years creating
Others could destroy overnight;
Create anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness,
Some may be jealous,
Be happy anyway.

The good you do today,
Will often be forgotten,
Do good anyway.

Give the best you have,
And it may never be enough;
Give your best anyway.

In the final analysis,
It is between you and God;
It was never between you and them anyway
-Mother Teresa.



When you came into the world, she held you in her arms,
You thanked her by waiting like banshee.

When you were 1 year old, she fed you and bathed you.
You thanked her by crying all night long.

When you were 2 years old, she taught you to walk
You thanked her by running away when she called

When you were 3years old, she made all your meals with love,
You thanked her by tossing your plate on the floor.

When you were 4 years old, she gave you some crayons,
You thanked her by colouring the dining room walls

When you were 5 years old, she dressed you for the holidays
You thanked her by plopping into the nearest pile of mud

When you were 6 years old, she walked you to school,
You thanked her by screaming: “I AM NOT GOING”

When you were 7 years old, she bought you a baseball,
You thanked her by throwing it through the next-door-neighbour’s window

When you were 8 years old, she handed you an ice-cream,
You thanked her by dripping it all over your lap.

When you were 9 years old, she paid for piano lessons,
You thanked her by never even bothering to practice

When you were 10 years old, she drove you all day, from soccer to gymnastics to one birthday party after another
You thanked her by jumping out of the car and never looking back

When you were 11 years old, she took you and your friends to the movies
You thanked her by asking to sit in a different row

When you were 12 years old, she warned you not to watch certain TV shows,
You thanked her by waiting until she left the house


When you were 13, she suggested a haircut that was becoming
You thanked her by telling her she had no taste

When you were 14, she paid for a month away at summer camp,
You thanked her by forgetting to write a single letter

When you were 15, she came home from work, looking for a hug
You thanked her by having your bedroom door locked

When you were 16, she taught you how to drive her car,
You thanked her by taking it every chance you could

When you were 17, she was expecting an important call,
You thanked her by being on the phone all night

When you were 18, she cried at your high school graduation,
You thanked her by staying out partying until dawn

When you were 19, she paid for your college, tuition drove you to campus, carried your bags
You thanked her by saying good-bye outside the dorm so you would not be embarrassed in front of your friends

When you were 20, she asked whether you were seeing anyone
You thanked her by saying, “It is none of your business”

When you were 21, she suggested certain careers for your future,
You thanked her by saying, “I don’t want to be like you”

When you were 22, she hugged you at your college graduation,
You thanked her by asking whether she could pay for a trip to Europe

When you were 23, she gave you furniture for your first apartment
You thanked her by telling your friends it was ugly

When you were 24, she met your fiancé and asked about your plans for the future,
You thanked her by glaring and growing: “Muuhh – ther, please”

When you were 25, she helped to pay for your wedding, and she cried and told you how deeply she loved you,
You thanked her by moving halfway across the country

When you were 30, she called with some advice on the baby,
You thanked her by telling her, “Things are different now”

When you were 40, she called to remind you of a relative’s birthday
You thanked her by saying you were “really busy right now”

When you were 50, she fell ill and needed you to take care of her
You thanked her by reading about the burden parents become to their children

And everything you never did came crashing down like thunder
“Rock me baby, rock me all nigh long”

The hand who rocks the cradle…may rock the world

Let us take a moment of the time just to pay tribute and show appreciation to the person called MOM though some may not say it openly to their mother

There’s no substitute for her. Cherish every single moment.
Though at times she may not be the best of friends, may not agree to our thoughts, she is still your mother!!!!

She will be there for you…to listen to your woes, your braggings, your frustrations, etc. Ask yourself…have you put aside enough time for her, to listen to her “blues” of working in the kitchen, her tiredness ????

Be tactful, loving and still show her due respect though you may have a different view from hers. Once gone, only fond memories of the past and also regrets will be left




We have often heard “it is how we perceive this world that makes a difference to our lives”. If we stand up; and look around, we perceive our earth as flat and crowded. But for an astronaut, the earth looks round, blue and serene. An optimist will always say a cup is half full. But a pessimist may connote it as half empty. In some religion it is a custom to laugh during bereavement, while in others they lament. It is how we perceive that determines our course of action. For the same thing, there can be myriad views. For the same word there can be innumerable meanings. Why ? Because people are different and they perceive things differently.

Just imagine an accident scene, the wounded will be worried about their health, the doctor will be worried about the patients, the policemen will be worried about the traffic and general order, the insurance man will be interested only in the vehicle and an onlooker will be interested in the general play of events. The incident is therefore skewed in favour of their perceived interests

Perception paves the way for creativity. If we are able to perceive things outside the four walls of our constrained thinking, then it propitiates creativity. A little kid was once asked to draw a snake. He did it but it looked like a hat. When questioned he confessed that the snake which he had drawn had swallowed an elephant and it is now lying in the middle of the snake’s stomach. There is no dearth to our imagination and there is no limit to our dreams.
There is a famous Zen story which goes like this. Every time a loaf of bread falls down, it falls with the buttered side up. In one town it so happened that the loaf fell down on its buttered side. The petrified superstitious crowd ran to the master and blurted the whole story. The master went into silence . After sometime he addressed the anxious gathering like this – “Don’t worry. The butter has been applied on the wrong side”

The world that we see around is a reflection of us. We can make it colourful if we want to or malign it with our darkest thoughts. It is how we perceive the world that determines our well being. If we through stones and dirt, we will be pelted with the same. But if we through flowers, we will be showered with the same.

Jalaludin Rumi, the great Sufi mystic once said – “When you see a big white cloth with a black dot, what do you see ? If you focus on the black dot, that is things which you lack, then it begins to look much bigger than it actually is. But if we keep looking only at the white part, which depicts things which we have, it fills us with an inner peace.” This life avowing positive energy is vital to permeate our body, soul and mind and usher in serenity and tranquility. This attitude towards life will greatly help in transforming us by prompting our latent forces and will help us to tread the path of righteousness.

The great Greek Philosopher Epictetus once rightly said: - “Men are not disturbed by things, but the view they take of things “ – By perceiving things in the right manner, we can view the world though the prism of wonderment and happiness and relish the clandestine grandeur of life.


CREATIVITY is a phenomenon which enables us to delve into the deepese recess of our mind and fathom the unexplored realms of the human brain. It is the ability to indulge oneself in divergent thinking. Creativity is not about the obvious and the mundane, but it is about the best and the unique. All of us are born with a creative self, but as we grow and get used to living in this humdrum world, our creative potentialities get eroded. Our ability to se things differently gets swept away into oblivion. We need to constantly rejuvenate ourcreative self by trying to see things in a different way. Our mind is like the day on the potter’s wheel. We can mould it according to our liking.

Thinking is something which is unique to human kind as we are blessed with cognitive abilities. Thinking creativity is an addendum to this wonderful faculty of the mind. Every single person, without exception, is creative. We all have talents and gifts beyond our wildest dreams. The latent forces burgeoning inside our mind, need to be nurtured and brought to fruition. Creative thinking is nothing, but giving ourselves time to think again about better ways of doing things. The great management guru and progressive thinker Edward De bono calls this as the “Creative Pause”. This phenomenon should be part of our habitual thinking. Many great painters like Michelangelo and Salvador Dali never used to finish their work in one go. They used to leave it half finished and then give themselves enough time to cogitate on it. Many a times the entire work has been redone later, which went on tobecome masterpieces.

How fcan we improve our brain activity ? To be creative, we first need to consistently work our brain. Scientists have time and again proven that an average human being uses only 1% of his/her brain. The remaining 99% is left unexplored and unused. Most creative people show heightened brain activity in both sides of their brain. For the common man, the brain usage is restricted to either the left or the right side. Anderson Consulting Inc, arguably the numero uno consulting firm in the world, once conducted a survey to gauge the level of creativity in people. The tests were administered to some of the best brains in the software industry/other multinational conglomerates. Astonishingly 90% failed in the test but many pre-schoolers were able to answer the questions correctly. The logical conclusion of this survey is that as we grow up we lose the ability to thin creatively. As children we had no dearth for imagination. The effervescence, the ebullience, the brilliance of charaterisation that we possessed got replaced with nonchalance and impiety. We lost our innocence and with it our creativity too. If you ask anyone they would confess that their best days were the days they spent as kids. Why ?Because that was the only time when wewere really the kings of our own world.

Let us now try to analyse what actually spurs creativity in us. Though the is precarious erosion of our potential over the years, there are ways and means to invoke the latest forces in us and propitiate creative thinking.

Why Leonardo Da Vince is still considered as one of the greatest minds ever to walk on this earth ? Da Vince lived in a time when every invention was taboo.

The church strongly opposed any slight deviation from the ordinary. The people were forced into straitjacket thinking. As a consequence, the best minds restrained themselves from questioning and confined themselves to plebeian ways. Creativity, in any form, was snubbed. But Leonardo was a genius who consciously believed in excelling not only in a single knowledge domain but in a holistic way so that one can lead an excellent life.

It means much more than intellectual achievement and connotes full realization of human potential in every manner. He had the uncanny knack to think differently, quite tangentially to the mundane, conventional constrained thinking. In the book – How to think like Leonardo Da Vince “ by Michael Gelb, he describes the 7 key areas that shaped Leonardo’s genius as follows:

CURIOSITA: An insatiably curious approach to life and an unrelenting quest for continuous learning.

DIMOSTRAZIONE: A commitment to test knowledge through experience, persistence and a willingness to learn from mistakes.

SENZASIONE – The continual refinement of the senses, especially the sight, as the means to enliven experience.

SFUMATO – A willingness to embrace ambiguity, paradox and uncertainty

ARTE/SCIENZA: - The development of the balance between science and art and logic and imagination. Whole brain thinking.

CORPORALITA – The cultivation of grace, ambidexterity (the ability to use both hands equally for doing things), fitness and poise

CONNESSIONE - A recognition of and an appreciation for the interconnectedness of all things and phenomena. Systemic thinking

Fear of failure is one of the greatest hindrances to crativity. The thought that we will fail in something which we are doing erodes the creativity in us. We end up doing erodes the creativity in us. We end up doing something else, which was totally unintended. If we are passionate about out work, then failure has got no value in the cancass of our lives. Edison failed more than 1000 times when he tried to invent the electric bulb. But the passion in him and the indubitable self belief propelled him to keep on trying until he succeeded. Einstein could not even speak until he was four years old. Sir Issac Newton did very poorly in school and was often tagged as “unpromising”. A newspaper editor fired and demeaned Walt Disney telling that he lacked imagination and original ideas. Despite these imperfections these wonderful minds went on to make history. Failures are often the stepping stone to success. We need to first believe in ourselves and them somewhere along the road of life we will meet someone who will realize our potential and our gratness.

Aristotle once rightly said – The secret of success is to know something which nobody else does”

There is a famous Hollywood movie – Death Poets Society – which portrays the life of a radical Professor in Harward. Mr Keating. He revolutionized the way poetry was being taught in Harvard. He inspired 100s of students to think for themselves and come out with their own observations on the poetry rather than curtailing their imagination to the already printed anecdote. The first thing that he did was he instructed all the students to tear off the pages which had the anecdotes/meanings to the poetry. Then he made each one of them to write/speak about the poem using their own imagination. The majority in that class later pursued creative careers and became very successful in their lives.

Creativity is all about passion and an urge to know more about anything that catches our attention. It is not about orderliness but rather about disorderliness. We cannot be creative by being meticulous and structured in our approach. There should not be any restrictions to our imagination. In U S A, there is a famous “Creative Writers Forum”, where they teach and educate people to write creatively. The forum speaks about the 10 rules which need to be followed to instigate our creative prowess. On the final day of the workshop, they teach the students the 11th rule, which is to break all the 10 rules which they have learnt.

To be creative, we need to first unlearn the gibberish information stored in us. Ignorance is bliss and from there sprouts creativity. See the world in wonderment and awe, as if you are seeing it for the first time. The musings will flow automatically.



There was a student, who reached school one day very late. By that time, the first period was over. On entering the classroom, he found a mathematical problem written on the blackboard. He quietly copied the problem in his notebook. He thought the problem was his homework. He sat up the whole night as he found it difficult to solve – he was not that good at mathematics. However, he worked and worked, till he hit upon the solution. He was very excited, and went to school the next day.

The mathemtics teacher arrived in the class and enquired about her homework problem. None of the students who attended the previous day’s class, did the homework. This boy was taken by surprise, since there were brilliant students in the class who could have easily solved thaqt problem. He alone got up, and showed his homework to the teacher. The teacher verified and patted him for doing it right.

Why, then, did others not attempt the problem ? The teacher revealed that, while giving the homework, she deliberately said that it was a very difficult problem, and noone would be able to solve it. Every student present in the class, believed that it was beyond his capacity to solve the problem, and hence did not even attempt to solve ?

As this boy was absent when it was given to the class, he did not have any mental block, hence he attempted and solved it. The teacher thus demonstrated to the students how mental blocks prevent us from attempting anything.

So, destroy your mental blocks, you can achieve anything. Remember: “Some of the world’s greatest feats were accomplished by people not smart enough to know they were impossible”.



Just because a group of people do not accept you as you are, there is no necessity for you to strip yourself of your originality. You need to think good of yourself, for the world takes you at your own estimate. Never stoop down in order to gain recognition. Never let go of your true self to win a relationship. In the long run, you will regret that you traded your greatest glory – your uniqueness, for momentary validation.

There is a world for each one of you, where you shall reign as king/queen by just being yourself. Find that world.. in fact, that world will find you.

What water can do, gasoline cannot and what copper can, gold cannot. The fragility of the ant enables it to move and the rigidity of the tree enables it to stay rooted. Everything and everybody has been designed with a proportion of uniqueness to serve a purpose that we can fulfill only by being our unique self. You as you alone can serve your purpose and I as I alone can serve my purpose. You are here to be you.. just you.

There was a time in this world when a Krishna was require and he was sent; a time when a Christ was required and he was sent; a time when a Mahatma was required and he was sent; a time when a J R D Tata was required and he was sent. There came a time when you were required on this planet and hence you were sent. Let us be the best we can be. Don’t miss yourself and let the world not miss you.

In the history of the universe, there has been nobody like you and to the infinite of time to come; there will be noone like you. Existence should have loved you so much that it broke the mould after making you, so that another of your kind will never get repeated




There is a Thai saying that experience is a comb which Nature gives to man after he is bald. As I grow bald, I would like to share my comb with you.


I studied Physics and Engineering at University. A few months before Graduation, I appeared for an HLL interview for Computer Trainership. When asked whether I would consider Marketing instead of Computers, I responded negatively, an Engineer to visit grocery shops to sell Dalda or Lifebuoy ? Gosh, no way. After I joined the company and a couple of comfortable weeks in the swanky Head Office, I was given a train ticket to go to Nasik. Would I please meet Mr. Kelkar to whom I would be attached for the next two months ? He would teach me to work as a salesman in his territory which included staying in Kopargaon and Pimpalgaon among other small towns. I was most upset. In a town called Ozhar, I was moving around from shop to shop with a bullock cart full of products and a salesman’s folder in my hand. Imagine my embarrassment when an IIT friend appeared in front of me in Ozhar, believe it or not! And exclaimed, “Gopal, I thought you had joined as a Management Trainee in Computers”. I could have died a thousand deaths. After this leveling experience, I was less embarrassed to work as a dispatch clerk in the company depot and an invoice clerk in the Accounts Department. Several years later, I realized the value of such grassroots level experience, it is fantastic. I would advise young people to seek out naildirtying, collar-soiling, shoe-wearing tasks. That is how you learn about organizations, about the true nature of work and the dignity of the many, many tasks that go into building great enterprises


At one stage, I was appointed as the Brand Manager for Lifebuoy and Pears Soap, the company’s most popular-priced and most premium soaps. And what was a Brand Manager ? “A mini businessman, responsible for the production, sales and profits of the brand, accountable for its long-term growth etc etc. I had read those statements, I believed them and here I was at 27, “ in charge of everything”. But very soon, I found I could not move a pin without checking with my seniors. One evening, after turning the Facit Machine handle through various calculations, I sat in front of the Marketing Director, I expressed my frustration and gently asked whether I could not be given total charge. He smiled benignly and said “The perception and reality are both right. You will get total charge when you know more about the brand than anyone else in this company about its formulation, the raw materials, the production costs, the consumer’s perception, the distribution and so on. How long do you think that it will take ?” “Maybe ten years”, I replied, “and I don’t expect to be the Lifebuoy and Pears Brand Manager for so long”. And then suddenly, the lesson was clear. I was desiring total control, long before I deserved it. This happens to us all the time – in terms of responsibilities, in terms of postings and promotions, it happens all the time that there is a gap between our perception of what we deserve and the reality of what we get, it helps to deserve and desire.


Life is competitive and of course, you play to win. But think about the balance. Will you do anything, to win ? Perhaps not. Think deeply about how and where you draw the line. Each person draws it differently and in doing so, it helps to think about values. Winning without values provides dubious fulfillment. The leaders who have contributed the most are the ones with a set of universal values – Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King for example. Napolean inspired a ragged, mutinous and half-starved army to fight and seize power. This brought him name and fame for twenty years. But all the while, he was driven forward by a selfish and evil ambition and not in pursuit of a great ideal. He finally fell because of his selfish ambition. I am fond of referring to the Pierre de Coubertin Fair Play Trophy. It was instituted on 1964 by the founder of the Modern Olympic Games and here are to examples of winners. A Hungarian Tennis player who pleaded with the umpire to give his opponent some more time to recover from a cramp. A British kayak team who were trailing the Danish kayak team stopped to help the Danish team whose boat was stuck. The Danes went on to beat the British by one second in a three hour event! What wonderful examples of sportsmanship! Play to win, but with fairness.

04. Enjoy whatever you do:

Sir Thomas Lipton is credited with the statement, “There is no greater fund that hard work”. You usually excel in fields which you truly enjoy. Ask any person what it is that interferes with his enjoyment of existence. He will say, “The struggle for life”. What the probably means is the struggle for success. Unless a person has learnt what to do with success after getting it, the very achievement of it must lead him to unhappiness.
Aristotle wrote:” Humans seek happiness as an end in itself, not as a means to something else”. But if you think about it, we should not work for happiness. We should work as a happy people. In organizational life, people get busy doing something to be happy. The more you try to be happy the more unhappy you can get. Your work and career is all about you are reaching your full potential. Working at one’s full potential, whether it is the office boy or the Chairman, leads to enjoyment and fulfillment. A last point about enjoyment. Keep a sense of humour about yourself. Too many people are in danger of taking themselves far too seriously. As General Joe Stilwell is reported to have said, “Keep smiling. The higher the monkey climbs, the more you can see of his backside “.


Of course, as you get older, you would have a slight paunch, graying of hair or loss of it and so on. But it is in the first 5-7 years after the working career begins that the greatest neglect of youthful health occurs. Sportsmen stop playing sports, non drinkers drink alcohol, light smokers smoke more, active people sit on chairs and starving inmates of hostels eat rich food in hotels and so on. These are the years to watch. Do not, I repeat do not convince yourself that you are too busy or that you do not have access to facilities, of worst of all, that you do this to relieve the stresses of a professional career. A professional career is indeed very stressful. There is only one person who can help you to cope with the tension, avoid the Doctor’s scalpel and to feel good each morning – and that is yourself. God has given us a good a health as He has, a bit like a credit balance in the Bank. Grow it, maintain it but do not allow its value destruction. The penalty is very high in later years

06. Direction is more important than distance:
Every Golfer tris to drive the ball to a very long distance. In the process, all sorts of mistakes occur because the game involves the masterly coordination of several movements simultaneously. The golf coach always advises that direction is more important than distance. So it is with life. Despite one’s best attempts, there will be ups and downs. It is relationships and friendships that enable a person to navigate the choppy waters that the ship of life will encounter. When I was young, there was a memorable film by Frank Capra, starring James Stewart and Dona Reed and named ‘IT’S A WONDERFUL LIFE” It is about a man who is about to commit suicide because he thinks he is a failure. An angel is sent to rescue him. The bottom line of the film is that “No man is a failure who has friends”

My generation will never be twenty again, but when you are older, you can and should be different from my generation. Ours is a great and wonderful country and realizing ever so much on the quality and persistence of our young people. Good luck in your journey, my young friends and God be with you.





A leader innovates

A manager administers

A leader develops
A manager maintains

A leader focuses on people
A manager focuses on systems

A leader inspires trust
A manger relies on control

A leader has long range perspective

A Manager relies on control

A leader has long range perspective

A Manager has short range view

A leader asks what and why

A manager asks how and when



Many people think that a leader is the man or woman with the title – C E O or President. Actually, leadership is not about position, it is about action.

We all need to start demonstrating leadership regardless of our titles. It is no longer an excuse to say you don’t have rank so you don’t need to take ownership for the results of the organization

To succeed, everyone now must see themselves as part of the leadership team. You just don’t need formal authority to lead anymore, only a desire to be involved and the commitment to make a positive difference. Mother Terasa said: “ If everyone would sweep their own door step, the whole world will be clean”. To show leadership, we need to start by being excellent in our current rate.

Even if one of the players in a symphony was out of tune, the music would be off and the whole thing would be a mess. In a theater they say “No role is a small role”. Same applies in business. We need to lead where we are planted and shine where we now find ourselves.

Everyone needs to show leadership. Everyone needs to drive innovation. Everyone needs to inspire their teammates. Everyone needs to take responsibility for results. Everyone needs to embrace change. Everyone needs to be positive. Everyone needs to become devoted to expressing their absolute best. Once we do, the organization will not only adapt beautifully to the changing conditions, it will lead within its field.

Each one of us needs to assume personal responsibility by becoming CEO of our own roles and leaders within our current positions.

You don’t have to have a title to be a leader. Because every single one of us alive in the world today has unrecognized powers and disowned potential that are far superior to the power conferred by a title. Once you awaken and then apply those powers, every element of your life will explode into success,. Leadership then becomes automatic the default at which you work and play. You will know of no other way.





In the past one decade, the economy world over and Indian economy in particular has witnessed unprecedented changes. Production oriented, highly monopolistic markets have turned into consumer oriented, customer centered markets. Competition, knowledge, technology, information, service – these are the words in circulation day and day out. E-commerce, telemarketing, B2B, B2c, B2E are the technical jargons banging the ears during day and lingering in mind at nights. Changes are taking place at such a rapid rate that business establishments are running fast to stay where they are let alone moving ahead. Constant change itself seems to be the order of the day. The shift is clearly from Capital to Knowledge, static to speed, monopoly to diversification, production to service and marketing. Hence, millions and billions are spent on media savvy advertisements just to push the same featured products in different styles under different banners.

This information based, knowledge driven service intensive economy requires speed, FLEXIBILITY and SELF RENEWAL as an ongoing process. For progress and prosperity of any organization, analysis of external competition should match with internal competency assessment. Core competency perspective focuses on knowledge creation and knowledge retention. Thus competency based strategies depend on people. People who can command machines, people who can master technology, people who can innovate ideas, empowered, a satisfied, committed people, who can take an organization to glorious heights, with a sense of belongingness and feeling proud to be part and parcel of the organization. Hence, in the present economic scenario, competition is not for CAPITAL but for HUMAN CAPITAL, that scarce human resource which is vital for any organization. Between two similar organizations, with the same service products, it is the quality of human resource that cuts the competitive edge. Hence, this is “war for talent” era and employees are ‘TALENT INVESTORS’. Because “Behind the success of every organization, there lies the collective efforts of its committed people”.
Building, linking and bonding people and teams is the need of the hour.

For building a team, search for talent should be an ongoing process at every level. Recruitment process should not be just selecting the best out of 100 or 1000 odd entrants. Strategy should be to go out and to locate, attract, select the best from every source and from every standard, right from campus selection to maintaining a team of recruiting experts, constantly on the look out for young, energetic, enthusiastic, knowledgeable and capable human talent.

Just capturing the talent with high pay pockets will not suffice. Building this scarce human resource also requires constant developing and nurturing. For this training system should be effective, and self renewing. Just a few days of external training or marathon sessions will not groom and nourish the talent. Development should be embedded in the blood stream of the organization, with each and every leader of a team, constantly coaching, giving feedback, motivating and keeping high the spirits and morale of team members even at times of setbacks.

Just selecting and collecting individual expertise cannot do wonders for any organization. The same is to be linked, focused and made into teams of excellence. INDIVIDUAL EXPERTISE IN ISOLATION CAN SPARKLE LIKE STAR WHILE LINKED, TEAMED UP HUMAN CAPITAL CAN CONSTANTLY RADIATE THE PLEASANT BLISS OF FULL MOON LIGHT STREAM.

Unlike capital, knowledge increases when shared. Knowledge/information is shared both in a group and a team. But there is a difference between group and team.

Having discussions and sharing information in a group helps each member to perform well in his area of operation while in a team, individual inputs and efforts lead to focused performance of the organization, output of which is much greater than the sum total of individual inputs. Synergy of team member, homogenic combination of skills and knowledge, trust, honesty, harmonious inter personal relationship and consistency of purpose are the haulmarks of a team. Hence a well captured and developed scarce human talent/expertise/knowledge when properly linked into a TEAM and interwoven into main STREAM of the organization, INDIVIDUAL EXPERTISE CAN BECOME EMBEDDED INTELLECTUAL CAPITAL OF AN ORGANISATION. This should spread through people, through social network, which again lays emphasis on interpersonal relationship, trust based culture etc.

Acquiring the most scarce asset and moulding the same into a team will be in vain unless there is a proper strategy for spontaneous retention of the same. Thus bonding the culture, imprinting the logo and the stamp of the organization in the breath and blood of the scarce human resource is all the more important.

High salaries, luring perquisites, stock options, may attract the talent to some extent. But it also inculcates the trend of “job jumping” and “frog leaping”. Competitors can always sweep away the talent with fresh attractions. Outsourcing and contractual transactions can bring the technological inflow. But the same expertise will be available to competitors also. It is also true that high productivity, better service may lead to high satisfaction.

Thus real challenge of building teams, is the employee COMMITMENT to the organization and the retention of scarce human resource. Any company is not just an economic entity. It is a social institution through which dedicated people acting together can achieve and excel. Hence, what is required is not just “brain storming”. It is HEART STORMING” that is essential. Any organization bet on retention, should capitalize on “heart power”, the heart which can feel and involve in the tasks, the heart which can experience the excitement of challenge, the thrill of a photofinisher and the childlike heart which can exude the joy of success. When once the heart of human talent is grabbed, sense of belongingness, self born strong commitment to the organization is automatically ensured. Companies are trying to accomplish this with B2E employee self service, mass customization, worklife bundling etc.

At employees self service site, employees can chose their training mode and schedule studying their need within office hours, after office hours etc. Mass customization helps employees to get things readily and at discounted rates. Work life bundling is nothing but fusion of work and family life. When wasting of time and energy on certain daily cores is reduced by offering small things like laundry service at B2E sites, not only efficiency is assured but also the feeling of gratitude.

To capitalize on the heart power, an organization has to make their employees live with a vision, work life and family life of employees are to be balanced properly and success is to be shared, recognized and celebrated. When a heart sp;eaks to heart with a genuine care and concern for family matters the sense of belonging and commitment that it creates cannot be swept away by any competition. Any company desirous of carving a niche for itself and aiming to survive and succeed competition should make out a strategy to balance “legitimate responsibilities of employees with legitimate desires to have life”. Unless this aspect is addressed properly , company either suffer “burning out” of talent or “loose the best talents”. Recognising individual achievements and sharing company’s success and celebrating the same with genuine fun creates a sense of pride being part and parcel of the organization.

A committed employee wants to remain as an active part of an organization with heart, soul and mind participation. He believes, cherishes, nourishes, spreads the values and ideals of the organization

They are the unofficial ambassadors carrying with them the name and fame of the organization. A committed employee, on his own, willingly goes out an extra mile for the sake of organization.

The squirrel of of Ramayana, sincerely earnestly contributed its mite for the construction of bridge without any intention of being recognized. But Rama made it immortal and inseparable part of Ramayana by recognizing and approaching its efforts. That is what is required for talent retention today.