Monday, December 25, 2006

One Minute Manager - Ken Blanchard

Key Concepts of One Minute Management

  • People who feel good about themselves produce good results.
  • Help people reach their full potential. Catch them doing something right.
  • The best minute I spend is the one I invest in people.
  • Feedback is the breakfast of champions.
  • Everyone is a potential winner. Some people are disguised as losers.
  • Don't let their appearances fool you.
  • Do one minute goal setting in not more than 250 words on a single sheet of paper.
  • Take a minute, look at your goals, look at your performance. See if your behaviour matches your goals.
  • We are not just our behaviour. We are the person managing our behaviour.
  • Goals begin behaviours. Consequences maintain behaviours.
  • Praise in public when people do the right things and Reprimand in private when people do something wrong. Do both praising and reprimanding immediately and don't wait till the annual appraisals.

Memorable Quote by Peter Drucker

Here's a memorable quote by the Father of Modern Management:

"There is nothing quite so useless as doing with great efficiency what should not be done at all."

- Classic Drucker

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Sam Walton - Made in America

If you are interested in Retailing, then Sam Walton's Made in America is a must read book. Below are Sam Walton's top 10 rules for building a business:

1) Commit to your business. Believe in it more than anybody else. I think I overcame every one of my personal shortcomings by the sheer passion I brought to my work. I don't know if you are born with this kind of passion, or if you can learn it. If you love your work, you'll be out there everyday trying to do it the best you possibly can, and pretty soon everybody around you will catch the passion from you - like a fever.

2) Share your profits with your associates, and treat them as partners. In turn, they will treat you as a partner and together you will all perform beyond your wildest expectations. Remain a corporation and retain control if you like, but behave like a servant leader in a partnership. Encourage your associates to hold a stake in the company. Offer discounted stock, and grant them stock for their retirement. It's the single best thing we ever did.

3) Motivate your partners. Money and ownership aren't enough. Constantly, day by day, think of new and more interesting ways to motivate and challenge your partners. Set high goals, encourage competition, and then keep score. Make bets with outrageous payoffs. If things get stale, cross-pollinate; have managers switch jobs with one another to stay challenged . Keep everybody guessing as to what your next trick is going to be. Don't become too predictable.

4) Communicate everything you possibly can to your partners. The more they know the more they'll understand. The more they understand, the more they'll care. Once they care there's no stopping them. If you don't trust your associates to know what's going on, they'll know you don't really consider them partners. Information is power, and the gain you get from empowering your associates, more than offsets the risk of informing your competitors.

5) Appreciate everything your associates do for the business. A paycheck and stock option will buy one kind of loyalty. But all of us like to be told how much somebody appreciates what we do for them. We like to hear it often, and especially when we have done something we are really proud of. Nothing else can quite substitute for a few well-chosen, well-timed, sincere words of praise. They are absolutely free and worth a fortune.

6) Celebrate your successes. Find some humor in your failures. Don't take yourself so seriously. Loosen up, and everybody around you will loosen up. Have fun. Show enthusiasm - always. When all else fails, put on a costume and sing a silly song. Then make everybody else sing with you. Don't do a hula on Wall Street. It's been done. Think up your own stunt. All of this is more important, and more fun, than you think, and it really fools the competition. " Why should we take those cornballs at Wal-Mart seriously?"

7) Listen to everyone in your company. And figure out ways to get them talking. The folks on the front lines - the ones who actually talk to the customer - are the only ones who really know what's going on out there. You'd better find out what they know. This really is what total quality is all about. To push responsibility down in your organization, and to force good ideas to bubble up within it, you must listen to what your associates are trying to tell you.

8) Exceed your customers' expectations. If you do, they'll come back over and over. Give them what they want - and a little more. Let them know you appreciate them. Make good on all your mistakes, and don't make excuses - apologize. Stand behind everything you do. The two most important words I ever wrote were on that first Wal-Mart sign: "Satisfaction guaranteed." They are still up there, and they have made all the difference.

9) Control your expenses better than your competition. This is where you always find the competitive advantage. For twenty five years running - long before Wal-Mart was known as the nation's largest retailer- we ranked number one in our industry for the lowest ratio of expenses to sales. You can make a lot of different mistakes and still recover if you run an efficient operation. Or you can be brilliant and still go out of business if you are too inefficient.

10) Swim upstream. Go the other way. Ignore the conventional wisdom. If everybody else is doing it one way , there's a good chance you will find your niche by going in exactly the opposite direction. But be prepared for a lot of folks to wave you down and tell you you're headed the wrong way. I guess in all my years, what I heard more often than anything was: a town of less than 50,000 population cannot support a discount store for very long.

Those are some pretty ordinary rules, some would say even simplistic. The hard part, the real challenge, is to constantly figure out ways to execute them. You can't just keep doing what works one time, because everything around you is constantly changing. To succeed you have to stay out in front of the change.

Purpose of Life - George Bernard Shaw

"This is the true joy in life, being used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one, being a true force of nature instead of a feverish clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community, and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can.

I want to be throughly used up when I die. For the harder I work, the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake. Life is no brief candle to me. It's sort of a splendid torch which I have got to hold up for the moment and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations."

- George Bernard Shaw

Sunday, September 24, 2006

My years with General Motors - Alfred Sloan

Bill Gates had paid his tribute to Alfred Sloan by saying the following: "If you read only one book about management, let it be Alfred Sloans My years with General Motors". After finishing reading the book I must say that I whole heartedly agree with Bill Gates.

It is a must read for anyone who is running or plans to run a business, whether it is a million dollar business or a billion dollar business. In this book Sloan has shared his thoughts and ideas on many intricate details of what were the broad policies and processes that he used at General Motors to make it the number one organization in the Automobile Industry. We not only learn about management and organisation, but also a lot about the evolution of the Automobile industry. The credibility of the book and Mr Sloans thoughts and ideas stem from the fact that he used these thoughts and ideas from 1920 to 1946 at General Motors when he was the CEO of the organisation and he was instrumental in making it one of the most successful organizations in the history of the Automobile Industry.


Saturday, September 23, 2006

Patanjalis - Yoga Sutras

Got this wonderful paragraph on Patanjalis Yoga Sutras from APJ Abdul Kalams book Ignited Minds.

"When you are inspired by some great purpose, some extraordinary project, all your thoughts break their bounds. Your mind transcends limitations, your consciousness expands in every direction, and you find yourself in a new, great and wonderful world. Dormant forces, faculties and talents become alive, and you discover yourself to be a greater person by far than you ever dreamed yourself to be."


APJ Abdul Kalam - President of India


Just read 2 of Abdul Kalams books. One was his autobiography "Wings of Fire" and the other was "Ignited Minds". After reading these 2 books, I really felt proud about being an Indian and I felt highly inspired and motivated by his life, his thoughts and ideas. I think he is an ideal role model for any young Indian who aspires to peace, prosperity and bliss for himself and India.

I would say everybody should read these 2 books.

I would also like to highlight 5 Key Improvement areas for India to achieve its rightful place in the world order as per Vision 2020 which has been set forth by a panel of 500 top experts in India.

1) Education and Healthcare
2) Agriculture
3) Information and Communication
4) Infrastructure
5) Critical Technology


Sunday, September 17, 2006

Lage Raho Munnabhai

Saw Lage Raho Munnabhai yesterday. After watching this movie I really felt proud that we have the talent to make such a fantastic movie. It is one of the best bollywood movies that I have seen till date. In this age when most people may think that the message and philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi is not that relevant, this film makes some very convincing arguments in a language and style that most Indians can relate to, as to why Gandhi is still relevant and why he will be relevant for a long time to come. It is becuase his philosophy and principles are based on eternal truths. If I were to put Ghandhis philosopy is 2 words they would be:

1) Non-Volience - Not hurting any living soul in thought, word or deed
2) Satyagraha (Truthfullness) - Always speaking the truth no matter what the consequence

Adhering to these 2 principles will do much more to take us towards peace and happiness than anything else that we do.

The film teaches us these 2 things without any sermonising, but by using humour and comedy. I for one loved the movie and I hope all of you who read this make it a point to watch this movie at least once.

And if this movie gets you interested in the Life and Philosophy of Mahatma Gandhi, then you can check out his autobiography titled "My Experiments with Truth". Your admiration for the man will increase 10 fold. Or as Lageraho Munnabhai says "Bandhe mei tha Dum, Vande Mataram".


Monday, September 11, 2006

Prostitute or Consultant?

Being a Consultant myself, I was amazed by the number of similarities a Consultant shares with a Prostitute. This is really humorous. Njoy !


  • You work very odd hours.
  • You are paid a lot of money to keep your client happy.
  • You are paid well but your pimp gets most of the money.
  • You spend a majority of your time in a hotel room.
  • You charge by the hour but your time can be extended for the right price.
  • You are not proud of what you do.
  • Creating fantasies for your clients is rewarded.
  • It's difficult to have a family.
  • You have no job satisfaction.
  • If a client beats you up, the pimp just sends you to another client.
  • You are embarrassed to tell people what you do for a living. · People ask you what you do and you can't explain it.
  • Your family hardly recognizes you at reunions (at least the reunions you attend).
  • Your friends have distanced themselves from you and you're left hanging with only other professionals.
  • Your client pays for your hotel room plus your hourly rate.
  • Your client always wants to know how much you charge and what they get for the money.
  • Your pimp drives nice cars like Mercedes or BMWs.
  • Your pimp encourages drinking and you become addicted to drugs to ease the pain of it all.
  • You know the pimp is charging more than you are worth but if the client is foolish enough to pay it's not your problem.
  • When you leave to go see a client, you look great, but return looking like hell (compare your appearance on Monday A.M. to Friday P.M.).
  • You are rated on your performance in an excruciating ordeal.
  • Even though you get paid the big bucks, it's the client who walks away smiling.
  • The client always thinks your cut of your billing rate is higher than it actually is, and in turn, expects miracles from you.
  • When you deduct your take from your billing rate, you constantly wonder if you could get a better deal with another pimp.
  • Everyday you wake up and tell yourself you're not going to be doing this stuff for the rest of your life.

Life in Mumbai - The Good and the Bad

The Good part of living in Mumbai

Mumbai is a great place to live, to study, to work, to fall in love. It has got history, culture, tradition and lots of variety. Many people have come to Mumbai almost peniless and become millionaires and billionaires after coming here. So if there is any place that offers anything close to the American Dream in India, it is Mumbai. The best example of this is Mr. Dhirubhai Ambani and his Reliance Enterprise.

The Bad part of living in Mumbai

Mumbai never became one of the prominent international cities because it is dirty, congested, overpopulated. Commuting to work to and fro takes a minimum of 2 to 3 hours for most people. So even though there are great places where you could go to enjoy your weekends, most people prefer to stay at home and relax, rather than face the horrendous traffic. Nowhere in India is the disparity in income between the poor and rich so apparent as in Mumbai. You find some people who have money to burn and some people who can't afford 3 meals a day.

Saturday, September 09, 2006

Indian Politics

If there is any one area where India has been let down in a big way, it has been politicians who ruled this country post independence. Winston Churchill once said “If the British left, India will fall back quite rapidly through the centuries into the barbarism and privations of the Middle Ages". Looking back on the past 58 years of independence seems like Churchill was not quite far off from the reality we see today.

Indian Business

I think for Indian Business there have been 2 eras. The License Raj era before 1991 and the Globalization and Liberalization era post 1991. The first I would say to a large extent the legacy of Nehru and the second a gift from our then Finance minister and current Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. India may have attained freedom on 15th Aug, 1947 but Indian Business became truly free to a great extent only after 1991. Before 1991 we were proud when any Foreign Multinational took a stake in an Indian firm, today in 2006 we see many Indian companies in IT, Pharmaceuticals, Steel just to give a few examples, taking over companies in the US and Europe. Information Technology has been instrumental in the rise of India on the international scene and the same is now happening in new areas like Bio Technology where Women Entrepreneurs like Kiran Muzumdar Shaw are showing the way forward to India as well as Indian Women.


The English Advantage

Since I was born after Indian Independence in 1947, I don’t know how much we suffered or gained from 200 years of British Rule in India. But one thing we should be thankful for to Britain is the gift of English Language. And I think it’s a tribute to Indian Culture and Civilization that we have always been open to accept and adapt to new languages and new cultures. This I believe will be one of the key to success in the global scenario. Even with our heavy Indian accents most Indians are quite fluent in English which has allowed us to gain access to business and work in various parts of the world and has allowed us to become the preferred destination for Outsourcing of various kinds of work. Being an IT professional who deals with Customers from various Countries in the world, I can say quite safely that with all the skills in various other subjects that I learned in school and college, the English language is one subject which has allowed me to market my various skills to Customers all over the world. If it had not been for English I would have been limited to working only within India.


Thursday, May 11, 2006

Me trying a Godfather Pose

 Posted by Picasa

Me Thinking

 Posted by Picasa

Something about me and my favourite quotes

Hi ! !

Here is a little bit of info about myself. I was born, brought up and educated in Mumbai, India. After I completed my graduation I got into Computers and Business Applications quite by accident. I first tried all the creative stuff. I read a lot of Classic literature, so that I could get the right inspiration to become a writer. When that didn't work out, I tried playing the guitar. When I broke a lot of G strings trying to tune the guitar, I finally gave that up as well. Then my dad got me a computer and I took to programming. I was very much inspired by all the hacking stuff that I read about and saw in the movies. But after 2 years of programming, I finally realised that I was not cut out to be a hacker after all. By then since I had studied Cost and Management Accounting as well as a lot of computers, I finally got into ERP consulting. And finally this is where I got to use all the knowledge and talent that I had accumalated over all my previous failures. Consulting is a profession where you need knowledge and the ability to use this knowledge in creative ways. Since then I have been working as a Consultant on Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) applications. I firmly believe that anything worth doing should be done with Passion and Joy. It should be fun. I enjoy communicating with people and connecting with people. My hobbies include reading, music, movies, food, wine and travel.

Here are some of my favourite Quotes that I would like to share with you.

Fundamental Quotes

"Lives of great people all remind us that we can make our lives sublime and departing leave behind us footprints on the sands of time."

"In the heart of this moment is eternity and if this moment we have lived well, done our best then we may very well leave the rest. For nothing better can be done for the future than doing your very best right now."

"Dare to go where no one has gone before."

"Whenever I climb I am followed by a dog called 'Ego'."
- Friedrich Nietzsche

"If you can count your money, you don't have a billion dollars."

"Money isn't everything. But be sure to make lots of it before you start talking such nonsense."

"I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work."
- Thomas Alva Edison

"Sometimes a majority just means all the fools are on one side."

"It's kind of fun to do the impossible."
- Walt Disney

"The true measure of a man is how he treats someone who can do him absolutely no good."
- Samuel Johnson

"Be nice to people on your way up because you meet them on your way down."
- Jimmy Durante

"All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."
- Arthur Schopenhauer

"Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance."
- Will Durant

"I have often regretted my speech, never my silence."
- Xenocrates

"Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it"
- Henry David Thoreau

"My advice to you is get married: if you find a good wife you'll be happy; if not, you'll become a philosopher."
- Socrates

"In any contest between power and patience, bet on patience."
- W.B. Prescott

"One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one's work is terribly important."
- Bertrand Russell

"I have never let my schooling interfere with my education."
- Mark Twain

"Men and nations behave wisely once they have exhausted all the other alternatives."
- Abba Eban

Have a great day ! ! !