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Monday, 04 February 2019 00:00

Leader's Walk

Published in Leadership

During my career, I have met many wonderful Managers/Leaders. Loved working with all of them. When I observe their growth and performance in their careers, I notice that there are very small percentage of the Leaders who are highly effective on the ground. These are the System Builders / Trail Blazers. Others also would have been successful in their own scale. But, on my scale a very small percentage of people are able to deliver on a scale that will help companies / Functions to transform themselves. These are the people who set their own standards around them. They are not satisfied unless they push the boundaries of Excellence. 


Indian Manufacturing needs such Leaders in Thousands. We are a Country that is obsessed with Cricket. In Cricket as we can see the Team has transformed itself over the past decade or so and the type of Cricket that our team plays is based on Aggression and Self-Confidence. We need Kohlis , Dhonis and Rohits in our  Indian Manufacturing! We need to develop the Confidence that we can set the BEST standards in the world and maintain them. We need to believe that we are no less than anyone else in the world in terms of Quality and Excellence. 


So, what makes the small percentage of Managers different that they are able to deliver much more than others? 


In my view, the following are essential for a Manager to Deliver ‘Life Transforming’ Improvements to Companies. 




01.  Good People Managers: These Managers or better to say Leaders are good with People. They are not ‘Popular’ Leaders who try to either please the Boss or please the team. They are highly focused on the task with a perfect blend of concern for People. This concern for people is different in that they do not try to just please them with small things. They are concerned about the People and want them to step up in their life. So, they are happier letting the team work hard, stretch and set a new standard. There is nothing more motivating to a Team than achieving some big result and becoming part of a ‘Winning team’. Each of us may get such experiences probably 2 or utmost 3 times in a career. Let me say that you would have a better chance to participate in such experiences if you are a Coach !! JJYou can touch that many more People / Companies. 

02.  Translocating learning: These Leaders are good at Learning in one context, taking the learning to another context, modifying it to suit the situation and implementing the learning to get Big results! This is a very rare skill and I have not seen many people possessing it. Many of us are good at Learning or so do we think. I would say someone is a good learner if he/she can use the learning in a different situation with some modifications. You would have learnt TPM / TQM principles in your life. I have seen many people who try to implement the principles very rigidly saying ‘this is how it has to be done’. But, the Effective Leaders know how to modify their learning to suit the new situation. 

03.  Having Vision and Clarity about next step: Many of us are either good at envisioning the future or we are good at doing something today. Very few Leaders are clear about both. The Effective Leaders can envision the future clearly and also be clear about the steps that we have to take today / tomorrow / next week and so on. Linking the present to the future is a very important skill that is not seen commonly. This is the big reason for companies to be rooted in future and routed at work on a daily basis ! 

04.  Hands on : Effective Leaders are always hands on as required. They know when to get in to the Shop floor and when to bring people to the Conference hall. Most often they get in to the Shop floor (Shop floor for a Sales Person is the Market) when they introduce some new approach. They would like to work along with the team to see whether the new practice will work. 

05.  Passionate: Effective Leaders use their heart. A Leader who does not have his/her heart in the work cannot deliver superlative results! Treating a Job as ‘Just a Job’ that gives monthly salary is not okay. The Effective Leader will motivate his team to work with heart. The heart has to motivate us in the right way. We have to use the Positive energy of heart and minimise the negative energy.

06.  Can Learn on their feet: Today the Businesses are changing very fast and the environment around us is changing very fast. Effective Leaders are capable of Learning on their feet. They adapt to the new situations and help their teams to adapt easily. They are not stuck with ‘one best way of getting results’. 

07.  Holding on to what they believe in: While the Effective leaders are not stubborn people, they have to be holding on to what they believe will bring result as they are the trail blazers. They often chose path less trodden or never trodden. That is why they get superior results. They are the ‘aberration’ in otherwise ‘Boss/Team pleasing’ crowd around them. Many of us may feel they are stubborn people. But, otherwise they can’t be different and produce ‘different results’. Bosses would be wise to encourage such people. 



Are you an Effective Manager ? How can you improve yourself ? 



Published in Leadership
Saturday, 02 February 2019 00:00

Self-Improvement Journey

As a Coach and a Consultant I meet a number of people in the Industry. I am very happy to note that many of the youngsters that I meet are interested in improving themselves and learning more. They want to speed up the progress in their Career. Some of the youngsters want to pursue higher Education and they will have to decide what is the type of Education that they should get in to. There are many other youngsters who would have completed their Post Graduate courses or decided not to go for Post Graduate courses. This group are looking to improve themselves with Self-help type of Books / Resources. 

There are many resources available for Self-help / Self-Improvement. Actually the problem now is one of ‘Plenty’. The Youngsters would do well to follow a structured process to improve themselves and ensure they achieve their Life Goals. Otherwise they would keep themselves busy, accumulate a lot of knowledge and Qualifications. No guarantee whether they would be happy and whether they would be achieving their Goals in life! (Provided they defined some Goals).

I am suggesting a simple process to pursue this Self-Improvement Process.

01.  Define Goals:It is very important to spend some time on reviewing how their Career is shaping up and whether they are happy with the way it is happening. This can not be left to chance. I suggest one pays attention to the following regarding setting up of Goals:

a.    What do you want to be in the next 10 years?

b.    What progress should you make in the next 2 years in your Company?

c.    What are the Financial Goals?

d.    Bring down what you want to achieve to what you have to do this month / this week / today / tomorrow. This clarity is needed. 

e.    It helps to write down the Goals as that would give a chance for yourself to review the Goals as well as share with someone for feedback. 

02.  Learn How to Learn:I notice that most of the Working people have forgotten ‘how to learn’. Learning is easy in College. They are able to learn as there is a good structure for the Education. There is a Syllabus, there are class room sessions, there are practical labs etc. But, what is the structure for Learning once out of College? This is the reason the Learning attempts fail more often than not. Everyone wants to start a new good habit on Jan 1st. They start and then it collapses even before Sankranti / Pongal / Lohri is over around 14thof Jan. 

One needs to understand how Human Beings can learn efficiently and then formulate a good structure for their own Learning.

03.  Agenda for Learning: One needs to understand what are the various Broad topics for learning. Some that come to my mind are:

a.    Behavioural Skills:To become a better Leader, one needs to learn some Behavioural Skills. If you are working in a Company that has a Leadership Model and Leadership Skills, that can be a good beginning point as you have to become effective in the job that you are currently doing.

b.    Functional Skills:To ensure your Self-Efficacy in your job is good, you need to pay attention to the Skills that are needed to become a good Functional Leaders. A Quality Head has to learn about Quality tools. A Production Head needs to learn about Lean and so on. 

c.    New Technology / Developments:I see that most of the Working youngsters are not even reading News Paper regularly. Many of them are not aware of the developments in the World like Industry 4.0 or Technology in the Industry that they are working in.  One needs to have an agenda for learning in this area.

04.  Allocate Time for Learning:The biggest problem that a Youngster would have while working is, to find some time for improvement. Everyone is spending long hours at work and they don’t have time to even take care of their health. 

The first step to improvement is to acknowledge that this is not the right way of living and one should get control over of his/her time. Once you decide that you will allocate time for improvement, it will happen. There is no value for anything that is available freely. If your time at work is unlimited, then there is no Value for it. You would never use the time judiciously. 

To become more efficient at your Work, you have to get away from it and do something else. You would come back with vengeance and your efficiency will improve. 

It would be good to allocate some fixed time for Learning in a week. Say, every Sunday morning from 10am -12 noon. 

If you are trying your best and this is not happening, then it would be good for you to learn about ‘Time Management’ to begin with. 

05.  Taking Professional Help: Depending on your Learning Objectives, there are many Professional Helps available:

a.    Professional Courses in Universities. 

b.    Online Learning – Free and Paid. Try,, and so many other Online sites available. 

c.    Executive Coaches to guide you personally. 

d.    Leadership Programs that suit your objectives. But, attend only those where personal help is available. Just by participating in a program, you can’t develop. You would need personal help.

06.  Peer Groups:Peer Groups can help in a big way in Self-Improvement. Identify a few Friends who are serious about Self-Improvement. At best the topics for improvement may match and you can keep meeting periodically / exchange learnings and collaborate. At Worst, you may just interact with the others so that you can get motivated and motivate others. 

There can be many more ways of Learning towards your goals. One need to start and then keep improving your methods continuously. 



Monday, 12 February 2018 00:00

Cross Functional Team Methodology

Published in Leadership
Monday, 12 February 2018 00:00

Cost Reduction

Published in People Productivity
Page 6 of 6