By Bharati Sarkar
The people who are redefining success are a new breed of motivational gurus who act as catalysts to people’s own emerging desire for permanent values
WINNERS DON’T DO DIFFERENT THINGS. THEY DO THINGS DIFFERENTLY
From washing cars and selling life insurance in the USA 30 years ago, Shiv Khera has come a long way. His multi-million dollar empire was built from scratch with sheer grit and he exemplifies his motivational trademark signature-line: ‘Winners don’t do different things, they do things differently.’ His greatest claim to fame is in his pioneering work in this field, both in the USA and in India.
Shiv Khera talks of his background as the grandson of a man who owned collieries in Dhanbad before they were nationalized. With disarming candor, Khera says that he failed in class ten and barely made it as a commerce graduate. He talks of his failures, and of the effort that went into his eventual success. He speaks of his struggle to find a footing in Canada and the USA before he met Norman Vincent Peale whose motivational teaching changed his life forever.
Khera’s book, You Can Win, an international bestseller, is an intelligently created motivational tool. One cannot but admire a man for walking his talk, for living his lectures, for having been there before acting as a catalyst to show you the way. He is a celebrity and the adulation that people shower on him is mind-boggling. Qualified Learning Systems, Khera’s flagship organization, charges phenomenal amounts of money to conduct corporate workshops and companies willingly pay to hear him speak.
”It is high time that people took a stand,” says Khera, ”those who are indifferent to injustice are as much to blame as the perpetrators. We have to become responsible, we cannot ignore our neighbor’s plight, we must get involved.”
He says that we must make a clear distinction between detached action and indifferent noninvolvement. He is very firm in his belief that we all need to note our social responsibility alongside our personal duties. Discipline is high on his agenda of self-development, as are self-esteem and a winner’s attitude. He gives a comprehensive list of attitudes that winners and losers have. Examples: ‘Winners see the potential; losers see the past. Winners see the gain; losers see the pain. The winner is always part of the answer; the loser is always a part of the problem.’
Defining the winning edge, Khera says: ”In order to get the winning edge, we need to strive for excellence, not perfection. Striving for perfection is neurotic, striving for excellence is progress.” His definition of success is: ”Knowing you have done a job well and have achieved your objective. Success is not measured by our position in life but by the obstacles we overcame to get there. People who have overcome obstacles are more secure than those who have never faced them.” You Can Win relates an English proverb that says: ”A smooth sea never made a skillful mariner.” Everything is difficult before it becomes easy.
Shiv Khera is a winner. He has a veritable who’s who list of corporate clients including a number of diplomats who swear by his teaching methods. He divides his time between workshops in India, Singapore and the USA.
COUNT YOUR CHICKENS BEFORE THEY HATCH
Prof Arindam Chaudhari, who has an impressive track record of having corporate CEOs and VPs twice his age listen to him in rapt attention says: ”I am not a motivational guru.” But he is already a media celebrity, a superstar, a motivator and a man in a hurry to get ‘Theory I management’ his India-centric theory, understood and applied in the Indian management context.
With the recent launch of his book Count Your Chickens Before They Hatch, Chaudhari’s excellent media PR has made him a top of the mind brand image. What emanates from Arindam is his passionate sincerity and belief in his own message. His India-centric management theory is, simply put, to take all that is good (and bad) in our culture and make it work for our success. These are tolerance, patience, strong family values and a value for growth opportunities. The byproducts of the same good qualities are complacency and its ugly cousin, corruption.
Chaudhari suggests that the reason our corporate managers (bar a few) fail to deliver the goods in terms of growth and global competition has been our failure to develop an indigenous management style; ”a style that revolves around our own cultural roots and upbringing.” The exceptions are those corporate houses that take their Indian-ness seriously and make it work with highly visible, profitable and positive results. Foremost among these being the Tata, Birla and Reliance groups.
Chaudhari draws inspiration from our legendary heroes like Lord Krishna and Mahatma Gandhi to illustrate his theory. When fighting for our independence, he says, despite the obvious appeal of Netaji’s call to arms, he failed to find mass support. ”Gandhi, with his nose to the ground and his finger unerringly on the Indian pulse, called for the opposite-satyagraha-and of course, the rest is history.”
The average Indian will not take readily to arms. He has always endorsed peace and togetherness as witnessed by the fact that even our conflicts are localized and politically instigated, muscled by a few, suffered by many but never a national syndrome. After all, one billion Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, Christian, Parsi, Jain and other Indian communities of a myriad hues live cheek by jowl, work together and befriend each other unselfconsciously, as Indians. In contrast, Chaudhari points out: ”Tiny European nations with a few hundred thousand citizens fight each other on the streets, on religious and other differences.”
The Bhagavad Gita is a golden repository of universal wisdom ”that we”, Chaudhari points out, ”bind in a red cloth and worship, instead of reading and practicing its teachings.” He takes his Indianness very seriously. ”But,” the economist in him says: ”as expatriates, it is only our culture that we carry as our badge of honor. We cannot boast of ‘made in India’ products in the global marketplace. It is time we changed this by a change in our attitudes.’ Chaudhari believes that the Indian judiciary, which he considers ‘defunct’, needs to be revamped, and the common man must have real purchasing power.
He agrees that education is the foundation on which any real progress can be based. But, he says: ‘I would suggest that professional studies be made part of on-the-job training.’
Prof. Chaudhari is Dean of IIPM, New Delhi and CEO of Planman Consulting.
ENABLING PEOPLE TO REINVENT THEMSELVES
About teaching people to become leaders, P.S. Wasu says: ”In today’s world, organizations need performing people who are intrinsically motivated to give their best. However, such people don’t come ready-made. The good news is that they can be trained to be that way. Morphic Leap (Wasu’s workshop) is unique and aimed at energizing people, enabling them to reinvent themselves. It revolves around cultivating the right state of mind that changes one’s relationship with life and work, giving rise to the optimal experience of being alive.
”The Morphic Leap is explorative, not prescriptive. As a result, it is much more involving and generates a very high degree of enthusiasm among participants.
”What the program does is to trigger self-actualization, enhancing creativity and personal effectiveness. It sharpens intuition and decision-making skills while it helps in time and stress management. It also improves communication, infusing leadership qualities and change-readiness. Above all, it adds to the joy of living and working.
Speaking of the driving force behind his teaching concepts, Wasu says: ”Zen, which literally means meditation, inspires Morphic Leap. It is a practical tool for living, loving and working but more than anything else, it’s about action that springs spontaneously from a ‘whole’ mind.”
Wasu has delivered in-house programs for major corporate houses with remarkable results. Over the years, his The Zen of Perfect Action evolved into an excellent mind-training model, recognized as one of the best of its kind in the world. Morphic Leap is the updated version of the workshop, a culmination of years of research and practical training experience.
THE BLOW OF A HAMMER MAY BREAK GLASS BUT WILL FORGE IRON
On being asked about the popular perception of personality, Dr Debashis Chatterjee says: ”Personality has become a contest of packaging. At the Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, where I taught leadership, I learnt that the presidency in the USA is more often than not won by the best performance on television! This leaves young minds with a great sense of image consciousness.
He adds: ”I see the Self as the central organizing principle of personality. By ‘Self’ I mean the flow of intelligence that shapes our identity from moment to moment. The Self is the experiencer behind all our experiences. What I am experiencing today, as ‘I’ or ‘me’ is not the end of the story about my personality. My personality is what I am + what I would be if I continue to be what I am + what I should be. So there is hope if we pay simple attention to what I am when I am jealous and then what I am when I am generous. Before we attempt to win friends and influence people let us influence ourselves bit by bit. How do I do this? By being attentive to my thoughts, movements and behavior from time to time. Just to have a date with oneself everyday is the most enchanting way to develop personality that I know of.
”Appearances may be deceptive but they are powerful. The ‘cowboy model’ of the personality with all its polish and mannerism holds sway among younger generations, even if temporarily. Yet, the world searches for something deeper. I have reasons to believe that the world will eventually look to India for a comprehensive and fulfilling adventure of the human experience characterized by truth (sat), consciousness (chit) and bliss (ananda).
In response to a question regarding great people as role models, Chatterjee says: ”Great people live their lives inside-out. Those we admire as leaders have merely expressed what was unique to them. When we read about them or see their personalities on television we tend to grow outside-in. Sometimes we imitate those we greatly admire. But we must read or imitate with awareness. Then we grow in awareness about ourselves. We must let the right outer influences trigger our inner talents. Then only can we be spontaneous. We can all be leaders if only we choose not to be confined by our dogmas or precepts and decide to experience life anew, in our unique ways. This is the entire secret of my leadership teaching.”
According to Chatterjee: ”We may take failure as fate or a feedback. The blow of a hammer may break a glass but will forge iron. We have to develop both the resilience of a rock and the fluidity of water if we want to develop.”
Chatterjee teaches at the Indian Institute of Management, Lucknow, and serves as the Chairman, Placement. He also heads their Global Leadership Center. He was a Fullbright scholar at the Sloan School of Management, MIT (USA), and taught MBA programs at the University of St Thomas, Minnesota and the Harvard Graduate School of Business. His publications include two books: Leading Consciously (Butterworth-Heinemann) and Managing Transitions (Wiley Eastern). He has taught leadership courses throughout the world. His students have included hassled managers and heads of states, Fortune 100 corporations and also small business owners in dusty Indian towns. Harvard Business School recently chose him as one of the 15 ‘thought leaders’ of the world. He is a member of the Government of India Experts Committee on Human Values Education.
A GURUKUL SHAPING VALUES DRIVEN LEADERS
SYMBIOSIS CENTER FOR MANAGEMENT AND HRD, PUNE
The Symbiosis Center for Management and Human Resource Development (SCMHRD) is ranked among India’s top 10 business schools in terms of placements and among the top 20, overall, out of 900-plus institutes. It is the first to receive the ISO 9001 Quality Systems Certification and the first ”best business school award” of the Asia Pacific HR Conference, Mumbai in 1999. This, despite it being a nonaffiliated and non-accredited center of learning, just 7 years old.
Symbiosis was founded in 1971 by Dr S.B. Mujumdar with a global vision of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam, pre-empting the more recent globalization mantra. Today, Symbiosis Educational Society runs 23 institutions, including five management institutes.
The vision, processes, approaches and mission for grooming students at SCMHRD are unique and unconventional. It is the first B-School that institutionalized values, ethics, environmental concerns, character and principle-bound self-discipline as inviolable norms of everyday behavior for students, staff and faculty. It is the first to make yoga, pranayama and meditation compulsory and to follow the gurukula approach and processes to learning, integrating the Indian ethos and modern management concepts and techniques.
Prof. M.S. Pillai, the founding director of SCMHRD, says: ”Kings and warriors were trained and groomed in jungles and simple ashrams. They learnt by being with a guru and by doing everything themselves while braving all situations.” In keeping with this ethos, at SCMHRD, management is viewed as a performing art, craft, and science of action, not just a scholastic pursuit.
Pillai says that making it to the Olympics and winning medals cannot happen by using computers and calculators. Technology is very important and essential. But more important are attitudes and action-competent, ethical and right action with awareness. SCMHRD teaches its students to be mentally and physically strong, intellectually sharp and emotionally balanced. Hard work, humility, honesty, integrity and sincerity are important aspects of character building that the institute focuses on, besides imparting modern knowledge and skills.
SCMHRD is engaged in the pioneering effort to turn out a few hundred principle-driven and performance-oriented leader-executives and entrepreneurs every year to benefit the country. Placement in a good job is only a byproduct of that effort. SCMHRD believes that India can regain her stature as an ethical country with people of sound intellect, values and performance.
IT IS TIME TO REDEFINE SUCCESS
Mukesh Khetrapal turns on his 1000-watt smile and says: ”I want to share my experience with professionals to achieve their goals faster. We operate in areas of skills related to human behavior. Leadership is one such skill but attitude is critical to people’s performance, so we incorporated attitude development and ‘feel good’ programs, which grew slowly until it became a powerful product. This was for my students in the corporate sector but two months ago I extended it to the public, with an excellent response. And now we have demands to conduct an advanced program!
”Materialism is catching up and not everyone is able to cope with its stresses. With the accelerated pace of life, people tend to lose sight of their obligations to society. Perceptions are often warped. So it is time to redefine success. It is time for self-analysis and reflection; people must know where they are headed. People are looking for practical solutions but they are also seeking mental salvation.
”About 30 per cent of our students are young people and that is a very hopeful sign because they are consciously looking for solutions at such an early age. They are not yet completely immune or thick-skinned; they still have a sense of idealism despite societal pulls in different directions. The program challenges them to look within themselves.
”What I discovered is that most programs only stir the surface level of these feelings-that is like a temporary high. We use an advanced meditative technique and NLP to get into their subconscious, so that there is a permanent retention of positive thoughts.
In the near future, we intend to create a forum for these like-minded people to get together to make it a movement. I want to be a champion who makes people aware of the wrong things that are happening in our society.”
Khetrapal has been employed with some of the largest Indian companies in the corporate sector and quit working for others at 45 to become a full-time motivational teacher. His client list includes the best names in the corporate sector including many multinational giants.
A COW DOESN’T GIVE MILK. IT HAS TO BE EXTRACTED, DROP BY DROP
PROMOD & VIJAY BATRA
A brilliant father and son team, Promod and Vijay Batra have published a record number of inspiring motivational books. They are corporate management teachers with a down-to-earth attitude.
Promod Batra started his life working for Escorts and both his boss, Madan Agarwal as well as Escorts’ founder H.P. Nanda gave him the initial impetus to grow, which he did, on his own. Promod is gracious, his easy manner and gray hair lending great weight to even the smallest bit of common sense wisdom that flavors his every day conversation. His workshops have always been very popular and are conducted in offices and factories around the country with the same companies requesting repeat performances every year!
”I have nothing original to say”, admits Promod with a wide smile, ”I simply remind people of what they already know, reinforcing their own innate wisdom.” His only regret is that a lot of people want instant success. And then he says: ”Some people will remain in their small jobs for a lifetime, but surely they can motivate their children to get further on?” That is what he does, his talks are reality bytes, full of the vigorous charm of Punjabi folk sayings and Western quips.
Among his Punjabi homilies he has made a trademark of the popular ki farak paindya? (KFK=what difference does it make?) and bahut farak paindya! (BFK=it makes a big difference!). Promod Batra is the quintessential teacher whom we have all met, either in school or college, as the most popular man on campus. The teacher who helped us to love the subject he taught.
Vijay Batra, worked with a top Japanese corporation in Tokyo and New York and brings his hands-on experience and knowledge of their success-oriented management techniques into his teaching in India.
Vijay, a down-to-earth motivator with an amazing personal success-story, consciously and happily follows in his father’s footsteps, having given up a high profile career and a lifestyle others would kill for. He says that his return to India is a step forward in his life and career because he firmly believes that India is one of the few, if not the only nation in the world, where people are truly free. Free to be what they want to be, free to grow and evolve in an ambiance that promotes individual freedom like no other culture does. This strong belief emerges in his workshops and infuses a passion in his students. His ready answers have years of study, cross-cultural experience and deeply thought out analyses behind them. ”Our people have an extraordinary intelligence”, says Vijay. ”Look at this country. Everything works, despite all the odds. The Japanese culture is a serious case of mass brainwashing. The USA is God’s own country, but only for a miniscule group of people, the rest lead strictly regimented and monitored lives. Indian wisdom lies in her innate freedom, an internal space that no foreigner has been able to capture, leave alone rule.”
Observing Vijay as a workshop leader one can see why he is so successful. A super salesman who led a committed team in his corporate days, Vijay whips his team of students into an evangelic frenzy of conversion. ”Be proactive” he says, ”think win-win.” Creative cooperation and teamwork are high on his list of effective management and he exhorts his students: ”Manage yourself; organize and execute priorities.”
Vijay Batra is an MBA, from Pittsburgh University, USA and a graduate of the Japan Management Program from JAIMS, Hawaii, USA. He joined Kankaku Securities (subsidiary of Dai-Ichi Kangyo Bank) as a lifetime employee in 1987. He was promoted to Vice President of the New York branch in 1988. He has a symbiotic relationship with a Japanese think tank called PHP that allows him to introduce Japanese management techniques to the Indian corporate sector.
CREATING WORLD CLASS MANAGERS
FORE SCHOOL OF MANAGEMENT, DELHI
FORE School of Management is among the top-15 premier institutions that teach business management in India. Besides imparting skills of the highest quality, the school takes special care to train future managers in their overall personality development. They do this through courses specially designed to instill the right attitudes, aptitude for team work and leadership qualities. The school attempts to create an ambiance that simulates the corporate world to sensitize students to the dynamics and critical nuances of the highly competitive business environment.
The academic programs of the school are designed to offer conceptual, analytical and operational skills. FSM organizes a weekly session of Experiential Learning called ‘Anubhuti’, that is, a unique platform for an interface with the corporate world. Eminent personalities from industry and academics share their experiences with students in this forum. The school claims that FSM alumni differ from others in their self-confidence, creativity and the ability to take calculated risks and be agents of change.
FSM collaborates with Nottingham Business School of Nottingham Trent University (UK) to conduct a one-year full time MSc, and a two-year MBA program in international business management. The school is a member of INTERMAN, an ILO/UN sponsored international network management institution. It also has links with leading management institutions and enterprises in 72 countries. Students of FSM are subjected to rigorous academic pressures and expected to meet deadlines while constantly making efforts to improve their performance. Constant self-appraisal and improvement is resorted to. Meditation, yoga and stress management form integral parts of the curriculum.
USE THE INTUITIVE POWERS OF BODY AND MIND
Head of the Indian chapter of the Silva Method of Mind Control, Bimol Rakshit believes that this method is an excellent adjunct to holistic growth of the human personality. Jose Silva who created this method said: ”It is an activation of the right hemisphere of the brain that controls creativity and intuition while at the alpha level (the subconscious level).”
Rakshit cautions those who practice the method and get good results to continue it. It is not a quick-fix method; people cannot adopt it for a short while and expect long term gains. ”The Silva Method is very effective, because through it, we learn to use the intuitive powers of the body and mind. My participants learn to use telepathy, clairvoyance and creative visualization.
The best part of Silva is that participants can do repeat courses free of cost. In Silva, you learn to remain with awareness at 7 to 10 cycles of the brain, which is the speed of the brain operating in the alpha stage, or the half-sleep stage.”
Going to and operating consciously at the alpha level, using more of the brain’s right hemisphere can make the crucial difference between greatness and genius. Among other things, setting and meeting goals, memory control, problem solving, improving concentration and coping with stress can be mastered through this method.
Rakshit became a trainer because Silva Mind Control helped reverse his cardiac condition. ”It has given me peace,” he says, ”now when I read the Bhagavad Gita or the Tao-te Ching, I know what they are talking about. That is my biggest gain.”
IMPORTANT COMPONENTS OF LEADERSHIP ARE TRUST AND SUPPORT
MANISHA AND SANDEEP CHAUDHURY
Sandeep and Manisha Chaudhury’s team called ResourceGroup, conduct workshops in the national corporate sector besides conducting open classes on how to live life fully and passionately. Sandeep’s words emerge lightly but hold the listener’s attention because of his innate passion and intelligence. If Sandeep is the face of the group, Manisha is its heart and brains. She is the main creator of their training modules and given her education in psychology, the administrator and evaluator of some of their evaluation tests.
The couple view success in a number of ways, but all of them according to Sandeep, converge to mean the same thing: ”To reach a state of mind where you are continuously and deeply satisfied with what you have and yet aspire to grow towards a vision.” He adds: ”Success is achieving our potential in all four dimensions of being: 1. Physical—or health 2. Emotional—or love and inspiration 3. Intellectual—or solving life’s problems creatively 4. Spiritual—or rising like a bird above yourself and the world and staying there + diving deep within and staying there. Finally, you must live your name, because that’s where the Godhead in you is hidden.”
Can leadership be taught in classroom conditions? Sandeep says: ”Yes, provided the classroom is sincerely and positively carried into real life and real life is brought into the classroom.” He adds that: ”We need to discover the blocks to our natural leadership potential and integrate our emotions and intelligence into effective leadership. By sensitizing ourselves to people around us and using this sensitivity, we will enhance our leadership potential. We check whether people are taking as much interest in others’ vision or not. This is one of the most important attributes of a leader that enables him to build a strong team under him. As a leader, one achieves self-growth by promoting the growth of others.”
”Trust and support”, according to Manisha, ”are among the most important components of strong leadership.” In Manisha’s book, a good trainer touches people’s hearts, not just their minds. ”If this is achieved, you have created or switched on a force required to make learning a way of life.” Sandeep and Manisha believe that India is on her way to a golden age when the world will look up to her for inspiration.
ResourceGroup clients include major multinationals and large corporate houses besides many individuals who continue to return to their workshops for advanced courses. Sandeep also teaches yoga and his program ‘Yoga for life’ can be viewed on Zee TV at 6:30 a.m. every day.
AN ATMOSPHERE OF TOTAL EASE
Khursheed Merchant calls herself a coach because she sees her role as helping a player become more effective in her absence. She does not believe in motivational training because according to her, motivation i
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