Meeting The Elephant

A charity group once took a few blind children to the zoo. The children were overly excited to visit the elephant. Upon being led to a massive elephant, they all gathered around it.

One of them touched its trunk and exclaimed “Oh! the elephant is just like a snake.” Another one grabbed its tail and shouted, “No, it is like a rope.”  Someone touched its ear and said, “Actually it is like a fan.” Somebody touched its leg and said, “I think it is like a pillar.” One touched its body and said ,”All of you are wrong, it is like a wall. ” Soon, they were all fighting and none of them realised that each of them had described a part of the elephant, not whole of the elephant. They were supposed to add up their observations and voila, they would  know what an elephant was like.

Sometimes when working in teams, you need to realise that this might be the same story: a group of blind children meeting an elephant. If there are different views on the same issue, then all of them need to be looked through. Because the elephant in the situation might be bigger than what one person can comprehend.

 

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5 Lessons To Take Away From The Alchemist

A Book Bucket Challenge is sweeping across social media these days and so, we have picked out a book that features in almost all lists: The Alchemist. Now, what can you take away from this story of a shepherd boy who ventures out on a treasure hunt? We give you the top 5:

1. “There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure. The secret of life, though, is to fall seven times and to get up eight times.”

2. “There is only one way to learn. It’s through action. Everything you need to know you have learned through your journey.”

3. “People are capable, at any time in their lives, of doing what they dream of.”

4. “If you can concentrate always on the present, you’ll be a happy man. Life will be a party for you, a grand festival, because life is the moment we’re living now.”

5. “When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better, too.”

 

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The Tabula Rasa Habit

‘Tabula Rasa': this term literally translates to ‘blank slate’ in Latin. Psychological studies show that the human brain is originally a tabula rasa, a blank slate. Even philosophers like Aristotle stated the same. Human brain actually has the ability to act like a blank slate and acquire new skills. But another side of the same coin is that human brain can be wiped clean of some existing habit.

What does this, have to do with the professional world? Think about it. Humans are born with an incredible brain that can acquire new habits, in just 21 days (according to some studies). Similarly, the brain can also delete habits, people slowly forget bad things that happened, that is why they say that time heals everything.

Bank upon this wonderful ability of the brain. Treat your brain as the tabula rasa that it is and acquire new skills that would further your career growth. Or just embrace the lesson and forget the failure that sent your plans into the ground.  Develop the tabula rasa habit and soar high!

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How To Quit Like A Pro

Does your current job offer you no challenges? When it becomes extremely tiresome to wake up every morning and go to work, it is time to quit. Here is how to quit smartly:

1. Get a new job:  Oh yes. Before you step out of your current job, make sure that you would be entering a job some place else, a job where your passions are roused, where you meet challenges, where you would love to go and work everyday.

2. Prepare your substitution:  Before you leave your place in your current organisation, make sure that you groom someone else to take your place. It is basic courtesy and it might just get you a few brownie points as your parting gift.

3. Leave on good terms:  Changing a job does not mean that you have to burn your bridges behind you. It makes perfect sense to leave on good terms, for you never know, the future might bring you back sometime.

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Tuesday QnA: Session 7

It is Tuesday and we are back with our question and answer session where we answer the questions you ask us. So here are three questions we are answering in this post.  You can send us your questions as  comments on this post or even message us on our Facebook page.
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Q1. How can I make my office meetings more productive?
A1. Identify and prioritize the issues your team faces. Then generate ideas to tackle these issues. Allow creative juices to flow freely. Focus on finding feasible solutions. Based on all these, make an action plan and set deadlines.
Q2. How to leave a good first impression at an interview?
A2.  Dress in smart formals. Greet the interview panel with a smile and with enthusiasm in your voice, but don’t overdo it. Maintain eye contact with everybody in the panel. Keep your phone switched off. Avoid looking at your watch. Also take all your documents neatly in a folder. Be honest with your answers, there is nothing more scandalous than trying to pull wool over the interviewers’ eyes. When leaving, thank the panel for their time.
Q3. As a leadership management professional, I want to ask how to nurture leadership qualities in my team? 
A3. First things first, don’t micromanage them. If they make mistakes, try to gently caution them against it, but cultivate the habit of letting them make their own decision and face the consequences themselves. Also, encourage their ideas, no matter how wacky they sound. Ask them to come up with action plans based on these ideas to actually turn these into reality. Last, but not the least, expose them to making decisions under stressful conditions, making them feel responsible for a group of people or a part of a project.
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The Kite Flyer

It was the year 1750. The evening sky was dark with clouds which promised a violent storm. A man and his son were tying a metal key to the string of a kite. The people passing by looked at them as if they were both insane. Clearly the man intended to fly the kite. Soon it began to rain and indeed the man’s kite was up in the sky. Onlookers tried to disengage them from this dangerous folly. But the man paid no heed. Lightning struck the kite. Once, twice, thrice. And this man just proved to the world that lightning is a form of electricity: a discovery that shook the world. This man was Benjamin Franklin.

Franklin indeed took a huge risk when he decided to conduct The Kite Experiment. But the results that he reaped were far greater. Until you have the courage to take risks in your career, push your limits, you won’t know how far you can reach.  So take risks. Dare to venture out of your comfort zone. Dream big. After all,  all things great were once thought to be impossible!

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Plato’s Allegory And Your Career

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Plato was a Greek Philosopher and he shared a very important lesson with the world in his Allegory of The Cave. Now this requires a bit of imagination.

Imagine a dark cave deep in the mountains in a kingdom. This kingdom has the tradition of not stepping out of your house without wearing an elaborate headdress. Coming back to the cave, this cave has bound prisoners sitting in that darkness, facing the wall. They cannot move, cannot turn and they have been there all their life, in this very position. A fire has been lit inside the cave to keep it warm. Shadows are formed on the wall which these prisoners see. Now, all that they have seen in all their lives is this long procession of shadows on the wall.  They don’t know the faces of the people who come to meet them, they only recognise them by their headdresses.  So, for them a square headdress might mean friend, or a round headdress might mean brother, or a beaded headdress might mean princess.

They might be scared of a round headdress, or charmed by a beaded one. All they see is shadows and base their entire judgement on it. They actually never see the person. Now think of your career, your life. You might see a drop in sales and consider this as a bad sign for your career and lose your heart, while it might actually be a sign for you to enhance your skills and move to a new field altogether. Or you might see a promotion and think of yourself as the King of the world, but actually, it might be a sign of reaching to the top of the mountain and being stuck there with no progress afterwards. So, ponder deep into every event of your career and examine what possibilities lay ahead.  May Fortuna smile upon you!

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