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From the green pitch to the corner office….

The ball is faster you bloody bull, pass the ball…” – thundered my coach… A voice I can never forget and a lesson I still find useful. This was the first lesson to me on the soccer field. Running like a bull, helter-skelter and everywhere, we all do. Mired by cut-throat competition and ever-increasing replacements, we all have to run and run fast. But do we have to run like a bull, I think not.  “Strong on your feet and nimble in your head” – was the icing on the first lesson

Inside our cubicles, following are few soccer lessons, I still find pertinent

  1. The ball is always faster than the player: Invariably the ball always faster than you, to try to outspeed it is foolish. Trying to outrun and dribble around when you are surrounded by competition will not only tire you, it can injure you and also run out of steam before time. The trick is to rely on the team. Pass the ball to the nearest player and reposition yourself to get the ball back from him. Share your workload is the idea
  2. Trust: This brings me to my second lesson, to pass the ball you have to learn to trust. Fifa player of the year 2016, Ronaldo, Messi followed by Griezmann, Fifa Team of the year 2016 is  Germany, Brazil followed by Portugal. 2014 Fifa final, Germany drubs Brazil 7 to nil. Need i say more to emphasise team effort? These incidents say a lot. Learn to trust your teammates and build camaraderie.
  3. Mistakes – my fault, accolades – it is your: Trust comes when you are ready to say “If it goes wrong I am responsible if it goes right you are responsible. It requires an immense amount of courage even to think these words let alone execute it. This strategy is not be used in every scenario and with everyone. Having said that never shy away from giving this impression to your trusted ones. And if you are a leader, this gets you people who travel very very far with you….
  4. What is on TV is not what you play in real… last but not the least, what we see on tv are the meanest players of the world, high on steroids, augmented with brilliant technology and camera to make it look fast furious and entertaining. It is a result of many many years of practise off the field. Trying to emulate it is a disaster recipe, have your own plan, strategy and roadmap. Yes, take cues, guidance, help from the best you see around, at the end use your mind cause you are the best judge of your environment.

Keep the theme intact and the rest will follow…

Happy Diwali!!

The “ON” “BY” “WITH” way…

How did the thought come by? Well, midway through a cookery show, which I was kinda forced to watch with my daughter. Three teams slugging it out, lead by a head chef. And to put it rather lamely, the team which cooked the best, won the match and the goodies, and the accolades etc.etc.. pretty usual. What i could notice that all the three head chefs had their own distinct style of expression, broadly classifiable as “ON” “WITH” & “BY” styles. One “WITH” style, the Chef was quite into cooking (i.e. operational stuff included) and had a specific task cut out for himself, much like other mates. Pretty much equal amount of work which the team had, plus of course planning, managing and decision making and not to mention shouldering the result and facing the judges.

The other team had their head chef literally on the team, only into managing, decision making and allocating specific tasks to specific team lads, we say it the “ON” style. A lot less work compared to the “WITH” style and definitely a bossy guy demanding respect from the team and surely maintaining his panache and definitely passing on the critical comment from judges to the team through and through.

And finally, the “BY” style, a leader who lets his team define, decide and deliver and only stepped in when he felt things are not on track and needed a course correction. Works the least and the teams does everything from planning to delivery. With such leaders, the team shoulders both accolades and reprimands.

Let’s look at leaders from sports annals, almost all  “With” guys. Heavily worked, into thick of things and lose their position as soon as they stop performing. 

In the business world, you find primarily “ON” style leaders working wonders.

And finally let’s us look at leaders in the teaching or social sector, you would find them usually practising the “BY” style. A bit passive style where leaders are more like coaches and enable their team to perform.

Which team won finally, I thought I would share and give a direction to the thought. But while scribbling these, strangely I felt I was being a bit biased and may be, my opinion would lead to assumptions which may or may not be correct

To conclude, let the show winners ..stay at their show, my thought stays with me, while you choose which hat you wish to put on…

Get ur self a katappa first..

Everyone loves a Bahubali around, flamboyant casanovic and go getter. Be it sales, service delivery, operations, our talent acquisition team and of course the entire organisation is neck deep in getting, nurturing or retaining one. Not to mention the innate aspiration of all newbies to become one. 

In this mad rush to create, nurture and retail Bahubalees, we almost always overlook the one key pillar which keeps the Babubali chugging. The character which pocesses the rare virtue of reliability and integrity sans the artificial halo in and around his head. It cannot be taught neither does one inherit it but can only be self learned. A role much harder to play both in reel and real life because of its ego crushing and adrenalin snuffing nature..

A role played by most of the women in our life since ages. For me, it’s difficult to become a Katappa than Bahubali..

Go get urself a Katappa first, Bahubalees will follow…..

Lankawi – A photologue of a protean paradise..

Travel destinations usually have a taste associated to it. Himachal for it hilly serenity, Australia for sea beaches and adventure, Europe for its beauty & monuments,India for its multicoloured ethnic outline and enriching monuments etc…etc.. Very few destinations provide experience of  all tastes and colours of travelling. Lankawi is one protean paradise which holds within almost all travelling experiences one wishes to explore.

For serenity you can laze around on its sublime beaches, for adventure you can explore its hilltops and rain forests or go parasailing. If you love food, you can experience almost all kinds of cuisines on a single street. For shoppers its kinda heaven. Here is a glimpse of the fairyland through my shutter, though its much much more than what i could capture…

 

An ethnic dance group at hotel Meritus Pilangi

A view from sky bridge….

Pitstop on the way to skybridge by cablecar

On the way to mangrove

Ancient limestone cave in mangrove

Strait to the sea

Road back to the nest…

The lankawi landmark

At Berjaya Lankawi resort…

 

2 mobiles, 3 laptops and a perennial “low battery” life…

It isn’t only with me, its with all of us. A life infested with electronic devices and the perennial problem of low battery. For me its like my bank account, perennially low, unfortunately unlike banks mobiles devices do not have any “zero balance” option. Once I had to plead a uber driver to change my mobile battery to book a cab back home. Adding to the fun was the demonetisation drive. No money, low battery, little intoxicated and late at night somewhere in Gurgaon (sorry Gurugram)

The world of apps will continue give us a life of “low batteries” and lower attention span. Sooner than later there would be platforms available to develop you own app for your own distinct need in a jiffy.  It will be as easy as opening an email account. And the already endemic “low battery” is soon going to become a global gridlock. Realistically speaking, we cannot entirely shut the app world around us to solve the problem, but what we can do is have a more rational approach to address it.

For the corporate world we already have platforms which can optimise the life cycle and usage of plethora of apps companies develop and use, for us lesser mortals (retail users) i guess we will have to wait for some time. Till that time enjoy the only benefit of low battery…some mobile free time…