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Monday, June 29, 2020

Monday Blues: A forest to reap


This Monday, I want to encourage you to dig deep into your core competency, your best skills and use that to build your brand. When things don't seem to go in your favour or, when everything you know looks like it is dead, when you can't see further, have hope on the Lord and he will help you to reap a forest. This happens when the spirit is poured on you from the high. You need to sow your faith, do your work, dig in deep and confess. Move forward, move ahead, keep running. Don't give up yet. You have a forest to reap.

Isaiah 32:15 - Till the Spirit is poured on us from on high, and the desert becomes a fertile field, and the fertile field seems like a forest.  

#TalktoTiger #PositivePsychologist
#Sownow #BuildtheBase #BuildyourBrand

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Book review: Irrationally Passionate by Jason Kothari

What makes an entrepreneur successful is not just your education, your grit to push forward in the face of adversity, definitely not just luck and timing but the composition of her decisions come from the culmination of several experiences from childhood, friends, family values, traditions and a lot more than what you can read in a book. And there is no quick solution to any problem and that definitely is not in a book. Then why would you be reviewing a book on entrepreneurship?

Is it because, the author has helped turn around the down trail of not one, but many companies and that too in different cultures, markets, verticals? Maybe, yes, but more than that he exposes his vulnerable moments and how he was able to bring in his experiences and work towards the solutions and that is something really interesting about this particular book. Jason makes it look so easy but cautions you that the reality is harsh and how we are to maneuver through the problems and fight our battles. 

Writing style: While the writing style is that of a first-person, lifestoryish journal, it is unfair to call it a romanticized version of Banting gran. It is true, fresh, raw, direct and in your face facts kind of writing that makes you connect with the author, be in his shoes, face his enemies, fall in love with him for his failures make you hurt and his victories are having you cheer on. Easy to read and pleasant to finish over the weekend. 

Pros & cons: The problem in the book is that Jason is an excellent negotiator and makes it seem easy and then it helps you understand what Jason believes that one should learn. Every entrepreneur cannot be a great businessman and it is vital to note that and take corrective actions so that the business side doesn’t get affected. What I loved in this book is the fact that Jason doesn't sugarcoat it for you. He lays it out, bare naked truth. he was bullied, he was beaten, he was punished and had to do more than what his other counterparts could do but tat energy he takes in to build himself up. Whether being a great negotiator or taking tough decisions while rebuilding something or helping entrepreneurs learn how to be a great businessman, he is clearly digging into his lifetime of experiences and moving forward.

Whether it is SprayIT or Valiant or, he has managed to bring in the change in the working style of the stakeholders, making things fit into a channel of success was tough. His seven pillared principles seem to be close to reality and being an entrepreneurial journey myself, I see gold in his glow. ‘Irrationally Passionate’ explores the turbulent and successful life of Jason and how it can inspire you to take up the entrepreneurial journey and helps few lifebuoys to fight out the rough waters. 

Verdict: A must-read if you are thinking about starting out your entrepreneurial journey. A perfect gift for youngsters to understand the nuances of being a business owner.

Rating: 3.5/5

Monday, June 8, 2020

Monday Blues: Every step counts. Make it count.

Did you know that a honey bee travels 500 times from flower to flower to get one drop of honey? Five hundred times! Every single trip might not give enough to notice but it gives a small, tiny bit of contribution to the main goal. If the honey bee expects to see big results at the end of every visit, it loses its focus. But being consistent, regular and showing up with the same enthusiasm helps it to have progress. 

The same applies to sales tasks, therapy, fitness. Every single step counts. Make it count. Even when there is no visible progress, non grand change, make it count. Be your best, motivate yourself and push forward. Because soon enough you will have seen through and you will have enough to talk about.

Life, work, health, relationships are hard. Now if you see the honey bee, while it is collecting honey, it also helps in pollination of 500 flowers. In one way the bees keep the entire cycle of pollination, plants, food, vegetables going and without them the world as we know will cease to exist. The direct action of the bees is just a drop of honey but the indirect action is the world going forward. So while your small steps might get you to your main goal in sometime, they might inspire others in your team, families of your team mates, your clients and that is a pleasant result. 

So keep moving forward, regardless. Make small steps of faith forward, cheer up and move on.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

The art of being frugal

If there is one thing that Covid19 taught me personally, that is frugality. I am still getting accustomed to the fact that we could survive with so little! I am talking not only about money but also about the use of various resources. Let me explain.

Since lockdown got announced, we haven't ordered food from outside, used only what is here, and in fact, almost stopped wasting food. Not that we were bad before but we could feel the difference. We actually are using our resources very carefully. Right from water, vegetables, fruits, dal, rice, wheat, ghee, or even snacks for children. Amazing that we could actually eat healthy, tasty food, thanks to the superior cooking skills of the home minister, and loved what we are eating. Along with drastically changing our habits, we are able to actually enjoy food, love a better healthy meal. 

Something similar has happened to our dressing. We used very few. Same with the car - almost never took it out, bike - sparingly used and so on. Our waste output has come down drastically. We are actually giving out dry waste only once in a week!

When we look out and see heartwrenching images of people walking miles and miles, most of the time barefoot, and carrying all their possessions on their shoulders, it is really humbling to see how much we have and how less they do. We are a generation of hoarders (for the lack of better term). And we need so little to live. Wify has been telling me not to waste that last tomato piece on my plate, eat that curry leaf, and so on. In fact, it is literally respecting what we have and are blessed with. 

Thankfully we have enough and probably more and it is important to look at life with the positive eyes and see how we can be happy and use less. I realized that most of the things I take for granted are not so easy to get anymore. With so much job loss, economic crash, health issues, and financial losses being projected, it is always better to learn to live frugal, even if you have everything. 

As an organization, learn to spend less on things you don't need and try to add more value to your employees, to your customers, and deliver delight. Support a cause that is close to your heart and aligns to our calling. Don't add to the baggage but lighten it. 

As a family spend more on things that add to your skills, experience and knowledge than material comforts. Being frugal is in. Appreciate what you have. Hug your family, thank your parents, pray, and thank God that he made you more fortunate than many. Be kind, be humble, and be frugal. God bless.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

The importance of being humble

Are you humble enough? They say you can't teach humility overnight. It is true. It is something you imbibe in you over a long period of time. 

I remember what one of my very educated professors at Nizam college said about research. When I asked him what lies beyond his post doctoral research, he replied that he now knows that there is so much more to learn and that he had just wet his feet in the waves of the ocean. I understand that now. After reading so much we know that there is so much more that humans have written down, documented, catalogued in the last few thousand years and we don't even unwrap the gift box yet. May be we just know a minuscule amount of things as a humanity yet.

When you are growing up in life, in knowledge, in career, learn to grow with wisdom too. As we grow we need to remember to cultivate the ultimate knowledge that the best among us are just a speck of dust on the scales of time. Jawaharlal Nehru described Napoleon was a comma in the history of mankind. Just a comma. Not even a full stop. It meant that the history of mankind pauses to observe the greatness, the passion and the great heights this puny French man achieved and yet moved on. When I had a chance to see the life-size bust of Napoleon in the famous Salarjung museum in Hyderabad, I was blown not see the face of a man, who made history pause, actually had a face smaller than mine!

As we grow, expand, learn, increase in power, never forget the less-privileged, helpless, lost souls, I implore you to remember to be humble. to be kind, to be gracious and act sensibly. Behave like you would want the other person to behave if your roles are switched. Empathise and have gratitude. If you do that you will be an angel with wings and will be blessed. Be humble despite what is the fashion as of today. Be humble as if you don't bother. Like Socrates. Like Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam. Like Ratan Tata. Like Mother Teresa. Like Mahatma Gandhi. Like Jesus. Be what your soul with wings of an angel would behave like. Be what your child, father, mother would be proud of. Or else your millions won't matter, your awards, your achievements, your influence, your life, your name - won't just matter and will disappear.

But if you choose to be humble, things change. Because it is easy to be humble, you would actually matter more. You wouldn't have to pretend, if you grow to be a humble person. Your work would talk more. Your actions would stand out. You would grow as a person, gain respect, influence others, change lives, deliver blessings. You would be the real deal, the real hustle and the real angel. Can we all try and do that? Can we make being humble fashionable again? I hope you do! Share a story with me about anyone you have seen be humble.