Thursday, January 31, 2013

Apptitude that Harvard looks for...Thinking on the feet!!

This questions lot of times define you and identifies your values in life. Thus, getting admission is one thing...but you will definitely learn more about yourself and what you are!!

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

How to make social/business gathering into productive networking?

This is an important leadership trait. 

The key principle is to make all you meet comfortable in there space. 

1. Become one with crowd
2. Reach out to those who are aloof and ask about them
3. Finally give sincere & honest appreciation to people you know, meet or learn about.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Road to becoming a leader...

Leadership Pyramid:

1) "When people talk, listen completely. Most people never listen." - Ernest Hemingway
2) "The most basic of all human needs is the need to understand and be understood. The best way to understand people is to listen to them." - Ralph Nichols
3) "Storytelling is the most powerful way to put ideas into the world today." -Robert McKee
4) "If you tell me, it’s an essay. If you show me, it’s a story." —Barbara Greene
5) "I had no idea that being your authentic self could make me as rich as I've become. If I had, I'd have done it a lot earlier." -Oprah Winfrey
6) "Authenticity is the alignment of head, mouth, heart, and feet - thinking, saying, feeling, and doing the same thing - consistently. This builds trust, and followers love leaders they can trust." -Lance Secretan
7) "As a small businessperson, you have no greater leverage than the truth." -John Whittier
8) "There is no persuasiveness more effectual than the transparency of a single heart, of a sincere life." -Joseph Berber Lightfoot 
Team Playing
9) "Individuals play the game, but teams beat the odds." -SEAL Team Saying
10) "Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much." - Helen Keller
11) "Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it." -Charles Swindoll
12) '"Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning." - Bill Gates
13) "When you're finished changing, you're finished." -Ben Franklin
14) "It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change." –Charles Darwin
15) "The only way to do great work is to love the work you do." -Steve Jobs
16) "I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious." -Albert Einstein
Surprise and Delight
17) "A true leader always keeps an element of surprise up his sleeve, which others cannot grasp but which keeps his public excited and breathless." -Charles de Gaulle
18) “Surprise is the greatest gift which life can grant us.” - Boris Pasternak
19) "Less isn't more; just enough is more." -Milton Glaser
20) “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication.” -Leonardo daVinci
21) "I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder." -Gilbert K Chesterton
22) "The essence of all beautiful art, all great art, is gratitude." -Friedrich Nietzsche
23) “Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” — Peter F. Drucker
24) "If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader." —John Quincy Adams
25) "Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other." —John F. Kennedy

How to make your work place a source of motivation?

Where I Work: Surrounded by Favorite Things | LinkedIn

"Surround yourself with postive things happened in nurture and trigger positive thoughts to aspire for bigger goals in future"....and thus becomes source of energy in present.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Building human capital optimally...and not exploiting it!

Traditional School of Thought - Exploiting Human Capital

Most of the companies follow this mantra: ‘everyone should do everything.’  “As ‘professionals,’  one should all be able to step in and ramp up to top speed in any area, at any time, no matter what the current workload.”

This approach is short sighted approach of getting things done without thinking of long term implication and capital appreciation. This is very much equivalent to Bond investment where you get conservative rate of return without any appreciation in value.

The highly technical people are thus spread  thin toward seeking expertise in all languages that make up an application (for us, VB, Javascript, ASP,, C++, C#, etc.), and have those same developers develop in-depth SQL skills (equal to the DBAs) and networking skills (equal to the engineers)

With this approach of project  management where you have resources with interchangeable parts, is best suited to managers while assigning resources since there is no thinking required! Anyone, anywhere, anytime. But it leads to detrimental impact on human capital which won't get opportunity to grow and thus becomes impotent to produce new ideas or work pattern to produce extraordinary results.

Advanced School of Thought - Building Human Capital

The companies who are are on the path of advancement, innovation and growth develop culture to build human capital. They value the strength of each individual and understand the value of optimal utilization of their potential. 

This strategy has a long term vision of continual development and growth of individual and in turn resulting in accomplishment of project with extra ordinary results.  This approach is very much equivalent to investment in growth stock which not only gives consistent return of investment but also provides capital appreciation.

It is all about building Subject Matter Expert (SMEs) in a given area and Center of Excellence (CoE) in given technology. And then manager has to work out strategy to align correct resources to project and then manage it appropriately such a way that person responsible for that project is not tied to it for death us part.

With this approach of project  management, it provides opportunity to an individual to grow, contribute effectively and become more productive to produce new ideas and produce extraordinary results.

 I certainly believe in later category of thought of building human capital...and that is way to go!! And welcome your thoughts on the same of what works or doesn't in your company bases on culture/projects/vision/strategy.


Roopak Desai

Growth Strategy - Find your ocean to swim

What is Your Blue Ocean Career Strategy? | LinkedIn

Quite interesting comparison of red and blue ocean to find your blue ocean growth strategy where you enjoy swimming, feel energetic and meets your interest.

"If blue ocean, the work and growth is organic and you just will meet the shore as you enjoy the ocean"

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Modelling Life

The life is an interconnected chain of models...

To come...

An Atom & Life

To come...

A Lincon & Leadership

Read them...digest them...and get on the road to be a leader!!

"There are only a few who are born leaders....leaders become...and Abraham Lincoln was one of them"

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Art and Science of remembering everything!!

Friday Book Share: Moonwalking with Einstein | LinkedIn

Must adopt the technique of associating things to form a memory chain!!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

How to keep associates happy and build positive culture?

It is about time that companies starts thinking to retain the great employees, instead of head hunting for better expertize..

Here are some cool pointers...

1. Give your great employee the whole tool box

  • Evaluate any new hire documentation at least twice a year to make sure it still aligns with your directives.
  • Ask your current employees for what they wish they’d known before they started working on your team. 
  • And, above all, make sure your great new hire knows that if they have a gap in their knowledge they should feel comfortable enough to make you aware of the oversight.

2. Set clear expectations

  • Set regular meetings or email exchanges to clarify your priority items.
  • Quickly communicate changes to strategy or new tasks. 
  • Set clear expectations will more easily identify their hard-working contributions to the company.

3. Build a trust environment

  • The best employees thrive in high-trust environments where they see their work as valued and necessary. 
  • Build trust in your teams through effective listening, acting on employee suggestions, relating the company’s strategic direction to everyday employee tasks — the bigger picture often helps clarify the details — and by removing obstacles.

4. Recognize everyday wins

  • Don’t wait for an annual meeting to recognize great work. 
  • You want to keep your great employees by recognizing their day-to-day tasks and projects.
  • Find the good in a project gone bad. Make it a practice to verbally praise employees whenever possible. Pass a thank you note. Have an informal weekly prize.
  • Keep a “Stanley Cup”-type trophy that rotates around the team. Every day appreciation keeps great employees producing great results.

(We in our MLBullmasters (Toastmasters) Club do exactly the same by giving a trophy to the best table topic speaker)

5. Establish consistently extraordinary rewards

  • Your best employee should know that they are invaluable to your team. 
  • Develop a rewards program that consistently recognizes your great employees.
  • Make these rewards something special with customized options for your workplace. A pattern of consistent recognition inside companies is proven to retain employees; we see it time and time again.
  • You can make a difference, reduce turnover, and connect with your employees when you have a clear reward program.

(And in our MLBullMasters club, we give trophies for an extraordinary member of the month and an extraordinary employee of the month)

6. Appreciate the person

  • Your great employee needs to know not only is their great work being recognized, but that they’re also being appreciated as a person.
  • Be sincere and personal in your appreciation and show it often. Be sure to show your appreciation again at the 30, 60, 90, 120 day, and one year milestones.

This was originally published on the OC Tanner blog

Carina Wytiaz is a professional writer and Internet marketer, with experience drawn from her time at FranklinCovey, Borders,,,, and several traditional marketing and advertising agencies. She loves helping employees feel more included and valued through exuberant appreciation experiences, and helping companies realize the incredible potential of their human capital.

Mistake and Opportunity

Every Mistake is An Opportunity to Surprise and Delight | LinkedIn

"Every one finds lemons on their way...the one who converts lemon into a tasty lime juice is a Winner"

Running an effective and efficient meeting!!

The most important things to remember before scheduling a meeting:
1. What is the meeting for?
2. Why is meeting? Goals
3. Who needs to be in the meeting?
4. What are you going to get out of it?
After the meeting, confirm if the goals and expectations of the meeting were accomplished/met, if not have a follow up with that specific agenda.

Why the right cuture is important for an organization?

Are you creating the right culture? | LinkedIn

"The culture defines and identifies the organization"

The strong spirited and positive culture is a guaranteed recipe of success of an organization.

Strong spirited + positive = happy associates

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Being driven and to be liked!!

Business Insider

It is not easy to be liked by all for the ones who are driven and surging ahead with lazer focus...

But you need to develop the art to stay likable at the same time being driven.

An Ultimate Motivational and Inspirational poetry (hindi)

"Khudi ko kar buland itna
Ke har tauqdeer ke pehle
Khuda baande se yeh puche
Baata, teri raaza kya hai"

"Elevate yourself to a level
That before destiny decides
The Supreme will ask you
Tell me my Son...What is your wish and desire"

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Feel good factor....

7 Tips to Feeling Better About Yourself | LinkedIn

"The important thing is not what will yield to man a few scattered pleasures, but what will make his life happy in whole amount"

Start with small baby steps with doing the daily chores,  simple act of kindness, helping the one in need or less fortunate and then growing into self less service, digging deeper to what you like, making a goal and resove to acheive it.

And SMILE...

"Living is to get from the world...Life is what you give to the world"

Monday, January 21, 2013

Being the leader - Master the communication!!

Mastering the communication and communicating like a leader forms the grounding principle and foundation for becoming a leader!!
The signature speech of the  legendary Steve Jobs during a Stanford convocation:

Aspire to be inspired!!

Motivational quotes of 2013:

  1. "Cherish your visions and your dreams as they are the children of your soul, the blueprints of your ultimate achievements."
    Napoleon Hill

  2. "The key to success is to focus our conscious mind on things we desire not things we fear."
    Brian Tracy

  3. "Success is getting what you want. Happiness is wanting what you get."
    Dale Carnegie

  4. "Obstacles are necessary for success because in selling, as in all careers of importance, victory comes only after many struggles and countless defeats."
    Og Mandino

  5. "A real decision is measured by the fact that you've taken a new action. If there's no action, you haven't truly decided."
    Tony Robbins

  6. "If you can't control your anger, you are as helpless as a city without walls waiting to be attacked."
    The Book of Proverbs

  7. A mediocre person tells. A good person explains. A superior person demonstrates. A great person inspires others to see for themselves."
    Harvey Mackay

  8. "Freedom, privileges, options, must constantly be exercised, even at the risk of inconvenience."
    Jack Vance

  9. "Take care of your body. It's the only place you have to live."
    Jim Rohn

  10. "You can have everything in life you want, if you will just help other people get what they want."
    Zig Ziglar

  11. "The number of times I succeed is in direct proportion to the number of times I can fail and keep on trying."
    Tom Hopkins

  12. "You have everything you need to build something far bigger than yourself."
    Seth Godin

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Creativity and Mindfulness

Principle #1-be curious George

Principle #2 - be open to questions and suggestion

Principle #3 - be attentive and listen

Principle #4 - be closer to nature even at work
"Enthusiasm is combination of excitement, motivation, inspiration with pinch of creativity" - bo bennett

Attitude and Success

Attitude determinies your success --》Business Insider
"The problem of the problem is not the problem, but the attitude towards the problem"
"Desire is to obtain, aspire is to succeed"
"If you cannot fly then run, if you cannot run then walk, if you cannot walk the crawl; but go out there and do something"  - MLK Jr

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Becoming a successful entrepreneur! !!

Very apt...
Principle #1- You are here to make difference....Think Different.

Monday, January 14, 2013

How to learn from succeed!!

Failure helps you succeed…but ONLY if you acknowledge it openly | LinkedIn

Step 1. To succeed - Need to motivate for taking the calculate risk to innovate. And if that leads to some failure...then step 2.

Step 2. Keep openess and candidness to discussion and analyzation for will nail down root cause which will become the steping stone for success.

The key is to promote step 1 and develop culture for the step 2.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

4 Simple steps for become better coach and building high performance teams

The GROW Model is a simple yet powerful framework for structuring your coaching or mentoring sessions.

GROW stands for:

Current Reality.
Options (or Obstacles).
Will (or Way Forward).

The model was originally developed in the 1980s by performance coach Sir John Whitmore, although other coaches, such as Alan Fine and Graham Alexander, have also helped to develop it.

A good way of thinking about the GROW Model is to think about how you'd plan a journey. First, you decide where you are going (the goal), and establish where you currently are (your current reality).

You then explore various routes (the options) to your destination. In the final step, establishing the will, you ensure that you're committed to making the journey, and are prepared for the obstacles that you could meet on the way.

How to Use the Tool

To structure a coaching or mentoring session using the GROW Model, take the following steps:

1. Establish the Goal

First, you and your team member need to look at the behavior that you want to change, and then structure this change as a goal that she wants to achieve.

Make sure that this is a SMART goal: one that is Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-bound.

When doing this, it's useful to ask questions like:

How will you know that your team member has achieved this goal? How will you know that the problem or issue is solved?
Does this goal fit with her overall career objectives? And does it fit with the team's objectives?

2. Examine the Current Reality

Next, ask your team member to describe his current reality.

This is an important step: Too often, people try to solve a problem or reach a goal without fully considering their starting point, and often they're missing some information that they need in order to reach their goal effectively.

As your team member tells you about his current reality, the solution may start to emerge.

Useful coaching questions in this step include the following:

What is happening now (what, who, when, and how often)? What is the effect or result of this?
Have you already taken any steps towards your goal?
Does this goal conflict with any other goals or objectives?

3. Explore the Options

Once you and your team member have explored the current reality, it's time to determine what is possible – meaning all of the possible options for reaching her objective.

Help your team member brainstorm as many good options as possible. Then, discuss these and help her decide on the best ones.

By all means, offer your own suggestions in this step. But let your team member offer suggestions first, and let her do most of the talking. It's important to guide her in the right direction, without actually making decisions for her.

Typical questions that you can use to explore options are as follows:

What else could you do?
What if this or that constraint were removed? Would that change things?
What are the advantages and disadvantages of each option?
What factors or considerations will you use to weigh the options?
What do you need to stop doing in order to achieve this goal?
What obstacles stand in your way?

4. Establish the Will

By examining the current reality and exploring the options, your team member will now have a good idea of how he can achieve his goal.

That's great – but in itself, this may not be enough. The final step is to get your team member to commit to specific actions in order to move forward towards his goal. In doing this, you will help him establish his will and boost his motivation.

Useful questions to ask here include:

So, what will you do now, and when? What else will you do?
What could stop you moving forward? How will you overcome this?
How can you keep yourself motivated?
When do you need to review progress? Daily, weekly, monthly?

Finally, decide on a date when you'll both review his progress. This will provide some accountability, and allow him to change his approach if the original plan isn't working.

Tip 1:
A great way to practice using the model is to address your own challenges and issues. By practicing on your own and getting yourself "unstuck," you'll learn how to ask the most helpful questions. Then, write down some stock questions as prompts for future coaching sessions.

Tip 2:
The two most important skills for a coach are the ability to ask good questions and the ability to listen effectively.

Don't ask closed questions that call for a yes or no answer (such as "Did that cause a problem?"). Instead, ask open ones, like "What effect did that have?" Be prepared with a list of questions for each stage of the GROW process.

Use active listening skills and let your "client" do most of the talking. Remember that silence provides valuable thinking time: you don't always have to fill silence with the next question.

Road to a successful career!!

Smart-work...dedication...commitment are the founding principles and effective communication forms the solid ground.
The 5 steps mentioned in this article applies for a road to a successful life as well!!!

Think simple, be simple and Dream BIG!!

Wishing You a Simpler New Year. | LinkedIn

Adopting simplicity in everything you see, do, and act is a virtue.

Mahatma Gandhi di it..and yes he did get us independence.

Respected Narayan Murthy ..founder of infosys is the living example.

And Mr. Ratan Tata is another extraordinary personality who followed this principle, build an empire and recently retired with happiness and a smile.

I believe in you???

Monday, January 7, 2013

Mastering your domain - Keep sharpening you saw

There is nothing like have to keep sharpening your saw...and then improvise as you go on using it.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Improving focus and concentration!

Along with these steps...meditation for 10 min can transform and improve your focusing ability multiple folds...!!
And famous Pareto 80-20 focus on selective 20% thoughts/actions/tasks and the rest are trivial.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

5 steps decision making process framework

The precision questioning and 5 step decision making process framework is a great technique to follow!!

1) Get to the heart of the matter

The precision questioning(PQ) is a structured method to quickly get to the underlying assumptions, sources of data, measures and cause-effect relationships to separate out causation variables from associations. PQ was developed by Dennis Matthies, a long-time Stanford professor. It is a good framework that enables teams to create a shared vocabulary and consistent way to develop critical thinking skills. 

2) Encourage dissenting points of view

When people are reticent or shy to express an unpopular opinion, giving them a voice and an environment to disagree is incredibly important

3) Foster boldness

One doesn’t need to be 100% sure of an answer before making a decision. 

4) Ensure the discussion is not personal

Make this a natural part of your organization’s DNA to ensure there is respect and civility in all discussions. 

5) Provide clarity in the decision

It is important for everyone involved to understand the “what” and “why” of the decision. Transparency builds the foundation for support. It provides predictability in the way an organization decides and picks between options.