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Workaholics are Not Role Models

A CEO of a reputed organization once said he has been working more than 90 to 100 hours a week for many years, and jokingly adds he should have done more. And in another reputed car manufacturing company dozens of employees and managers get cash rewards and appreciation certificates for not taking a single day leave during the last two or three years. In yet another case, a jet-set CEO was proudly patting his own back stating that he loves his work so much that he often does not see his family or kids for several weeks, and cannot remember when he took a couple of days leave or a vacation. Nowadays, the number of such morons is increasing at an exponential rate. And you can very easily spot such people as they will be constantly talking on their mobiles, checking their handheld devices for text messages or always connected to their office via their laptops for never-ending emails and so on. Such people have their hands and minds loaded with projects, countless…
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Humor - The Ultimate Leadership Style

In today’s workplace the number of problem-related words like ‘stress-related-illness’, ‘burnout’, and ‘work-life balance’ have become quite common. What this simply means is organizations are at last recognizing the importance of such things. If you have noticed, today’s hectic workplaces have become extremely humorless sapping the energy of everyone right from the janitor to the CEO. For example, when was the last time you had some continuous weeks or months of fun and humor in the office? However, I am not talking about those occasional and rare humorous situations of exchanging some silly jokes or laughing at a Dilbert cartoon, but a continuous period of workplace enjoyment when you did not dread that Monday morning alarm. A period when you used to go home relaxed and contented instead of planning to update your resume. Probably never. But, do you remember the amount of fun you used to have as kids? As children, you would laugh or giggle dozens of times a…

Why some people drive you Nuts

An ancient proverb says, ‘Everyone looks normal, until you get to know them better.’ And the reverse is also true that is, ‘Everyone looks abnormal until you get to know them better.’ On our planet a very large percentage of people exhibit characteristics of being tough, highly independent, stubborn, impossible to please, restless, perfectionists, etc., and they continue to lead their entire life like that. Practically everyone would have definitely experienced or heard true stories of such people who drive others nuts through their irrational behaviours. The traditional methods of interaction that works for normal or sweet people just don’t work for them. So how do you deal with such tough people? The simple answer is you cannot in most of the cases. Nor can you fully blame the other person for acting irrational, as there is usually a scientific reason for such behaviour. And that reason is biological in nature as man is not a uniformly programmed species lik…

Learn India in 12 Easy Steps

India has become the hot low cost outsourcing destination for many western companies, and everyone is hating and loving it at the same time. As it is a hot destination too many western businessmen often burn their hands by touching the wrong buttons. But anyone who wants to successfully take advantage of the pluses and minuses of India must first understand the complex kaleidoscope of this country and the way Indians think, act, see, hear and believe. Doing business with India is more than just technology, contracts, quarterly earnings, leadership, customer satisfaction, business value and other jargon. To have a long-term business relationship with India and most south Asian countries around India, you need to understand the unsaid and the unspoken that may often seem to have no connection or an impediment to business needs. 1. Faith: Religions, castes and languages play a dominating role in the country. In India the major religions are Hindus, Sikhs, Jains…

The Hidden Advantage of Disagreements

A popular comic strip once showed a soldier diligently watering a lawn in the rain. When a puzzled passer-by questions the need for a hose during a rain the solder answers he was simply following orders that the lawn must be watered every day. And then mischievously adds that soldiers are forbidden from disagreeing or questioning the orders made by their superiors. Conventional wisdom usually shows that going quietly with the established flow is the path to success and happiness. For example, if you are the boss and you have team members who don’t support you in everything, you may argue that it can undermine morale, reduce your authority, weaken the team, project or even sabotage the company goals. So, a good team player is one who does not rock the boat, delay decisions or introduce roadblocks. And obviously having people who agree with you on anything and everything has many perceived advantages like below. 1. Working with cooperative people is a joy and…

Intuition - Your Invisible Guardian Angel

A famous police officer was once asked by an interviewer how he was able to crack several murder cases that appeared impossible to solve with the limited evidence available. To everyone’s surprise, he replied that he himself did not know how, because he often relied on his hunches or intuition for cases that could not be solved through straightforward methods or plain logic. A general dictionary defines intuition in many ways like, ‘The act or faculty of knowing or sensing without the use of rational processes, a sense of something not evident or deducible, an instinctive knowing, a power beyond the five human senses or rationality, a special unexplained human power, and so on’ It’s derived from the Latin word Intueri, which means ‘to see within.’ Throughout history, and in every country, many police officers have solved countless unsolvable criminal cases using intuition, and none of them can explain how. It’s a way of knowing or sensing the truth without lo…

History - Telescopes to the Future

Nowadays, if you read interviews of any top business people in any news media you will invariably see a question that asks which book they have recently read or are currently reading. And their obvious answers will be the names of some newfangled management book like why the moon is still round while the earth is going flat, or the fifteenth leadership habit of a maverick, or some new cutting-edge book about managing people, or even some fancy novel. But you will never hear any businessman say they are reading an ordinary book like a medieval or ancient history textbook. Now, you may argue how a boring textbook on history help a businessperson can run his or her business. Besides, who has the time to read history, and who cares if some Attila the Hun plundered a village in the fourth century or some king was beheaded by his courtiers? And why bother with what has been over and forgotten, and what is the justification to study something that is unconnected wi…