It is time we start realizing women leaders as women

I always come across leadership or management favoring a woman who displays the traits or characteristics of men, over other women. Example, one with an aggressive behavior will make a good leader(really?) OR one who can ignore feelings/emotions of others/subordinates.

I agree that men have traditionally run businesses. And they are the frontrunner, purely because of the undue advantage of starting early and having all the necessary resources(and beliefs). Man’s way of doing business and treating people seems to have become the norm. If you cannot emulate it, you cannot reach it seems to be the way. Isn’t there always a different way, an alternate way of doing anything. Why can’t there be one for running business? People keep talking about diversity, and how it can benefit organizations. Well, it is time you make use of this diversity advantage guys.

Thankfully, people these days understand the gender bias, the stereotypes. And more women keep moving up the ladder. Though the difficulties of women have not eased up. As they still have the enormous responsibility of taking care of children, keeping home in order.  I am hoping that things keep changing and present a more natural way of progressing and breaking that so-called glass ceiling for women.

Book Review – The Steve Jobs way

I picked up this book which has been lying around for quite some time now in my home, over the weekend. All these days what made me not pick this book was fear. Steve Jobs is the name which did this. However, when I started reading this book, I was totally engrossed. If I learned anything from this book, it would first be about perseverance. Other important things being steadfastness, innovation, intuitiveness, Selflessness and the courage. I would like to call Steve now, “The Intuitive Leader” and a powerful visionary.

Many interesting phrases used throughout this book like “Evangelizing Innovation, Pirates!Not the Navy, Holistic Product Development”. The excitement that is projected in the book is infectious.

Though I would have liked a story which builds up gradually. It was interesting in one way that the Author has segmented the book into different sections like “Tapping Talent, Rewarding, Brand Building etc”. The book goes back and forth between happenings in Steve’s life, not in a particular order. Once, I was left wondering if in this scenario, Steve had already met Steve Wozniak. Probably it is due to my lack of familiarity with the characters and their lives outside of this book.

The author, Jay Elliott, explains how Steve, the consumer himself understood the needs of consumer better and worked to satisfy their needs. The ultimate way of Steve unleashing his potential is when he decided to jump into retail – selling Apple’s product. He hired the right guy to do the job. This was one of the many examples of Steve’s excellent recruiting capabilities, as the author projected.

This is not to say Steve never had setbacks. He did have setbacks, including being away from Apple for a considerable amount of time. He was graceful about these as his focus never wavered from what he wanted to get to the consumer. He would make a come back to Apple as a CEO this time, while he was only leading Mac team while he left Apple.

Steve’s courage is another significant item to be discussed, when the author says Steve slashed down the number of products Apple was producing, though they were classic.

Very touching scenario was when Steve walked in to the factory to hand out $100 bills to the factory workers, when Apple first launched Macs. This is only one small part of the rewarding system that Steve setup for his people, the author says. Who would not want to be rewarded 🙂

10 Powerful sentences

Source – http://www.lifehack.org.

This is  a nice post from lifehack. I thought it is worth noting here, as a reminder to all of us.

The power of a sentence is tremendous. A single destructive sentence can ruin somebody’s life, make your day, or change your mood. Fortunately, there are some sentences that can give us power to go on. We have sorted out 10 powerful sentences that can change your life for the better.

#1 “People aren’t against you; they are for themselves.”

#2 “Climb mountains not so the world can see you, but so you can see the world.”

#3 “You learn more from failure than from success; don’t let it stop you. Failure builds character.”

#4 “The most dangerous risk of all – The risk of spending your life not doing what you want on the bet you can buy yourself the freedom to do it later”

#5 “Go where you’re celebrated, not where you’re tolerated.”

#6 “The person that you will spend the most time with in your life is yourself, so you better try to make yourself as interesting as possible.”

#7 “If you accept your limitations you go beyond them.”

#8 “People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing.. that’s why we recommend it daily.”

#9 “Everyone you meet is afraid of something, loves something, and has lost something”

#10 “Comfort is the enemy of achievement.”

Welcome Simplicity! Bye Bye Complexity!

The year 2013 is here. One of my friends asked me what my new year resolution is.

My spontaneous reaction was, as in many previous years to start talking about all the things I would want to start doing. But before I could say these words, I realized that nothing has stopped me before from doing these things. I questioned myself, then, why couldn’t I do these things in 2012. Was anything wrong with 2012? NO was the answer. As a working mother of three small kids, I know I have my constraints and challenges. All of a sudden, because 2013 is here, my constraints and challenges are not going to go away. Why should I add the burden of New Year Resolutions to my already strained mind and body.

Then, should I give up on my goals? NO is the answer. I will still pursue my goals. But not as goals, only as dreams and visions. I am going to include one small action to be taken everyday into my schedule. Work through it. Once I am comfortable with this new schedule, add one small action into the schedule. Take time to get comfortable with it.

This way, I want to rid my life of stress and complexity. Welcome simplicity and serenity. Be more gentle and kind to myself. Thereby, being gentle and kind to my kids, my family and to the people around in my world.

Don’t panic to panic once in a while

Panic is good. It is a survival mechanism that kept the human race safe for millions of years. Panic is NOT good always. But sometimes, it is a wonderful survival mechanism which elicits the best out of us and spurs us into action. It warns us of an unfriendly environment around. Think about the last time you felt a prick in the back of your neck OR the anxiety in the pit of your stomach. Your unconscious mind was telling you something. When there is a graver situation in hand which requires urgent attention, panic kicks in(fight-or-flight mode).

Human being also experiences panic when something unusual happens. What if this unusual thing is for your good. What if the anxiety you experience is about an opportunity that can do you tremendous good. Next time you feel anxious, stop for a moment and think if it is something good/unusual that is making you feel anxious. Never again miss an opportunity.

Think about a mother who could stop a moving bus because of the panic she felt when her child was about to come under the bus. In such situations, I don’t advise you to think through before taking action though.

Improve Performance or Elicit Performance

Every individual has potential beyond what he/she realizes at the moment. Realizing this potential and turning it into performance is key in improving/enhancing the performance of an individual.

Tim Gallwey put it as

Performance = Potential – Interferences

Interferences are normally emotional interferences like fear, guilt, worry. Coaching is a powerful intervention in helping people clear the interferences and achieve maximum potential.

I would go as far to say there is nothing like Improving performance. We can only Elicit performance from the potential that is already lying dormant inside the person.

High-performance coaching conversations usually start with finding out people’s “starting points” – their visions or life ambitions. Then, it moves on to explore the directions in which people need to move to achieve those visions, and the steps they need to take now to do so.

Coaching not only impacts productivity, it also positively impacts:

  1. Confidence and motivation
  2. Behavior change
  3. Culture
  4. Leadership

Benefits

  1. Improved individual performance
  2. Improved productivity
  3. Confident Self-driven individuals
  4. Develop individuals who see opportunity in all current situations
  5. Individuals learn to make the best use of the current situation.

The Power of Now – A realisation through my typhoid days

I think I am a planning freak. I am continuously planning off my everyday schedule, my schedule as it might look a few days from now, a few months from now. I may not have felt its impact when I had all the energy in the world to do it along with my other chores.

But this previous month, when I was down with Typhoid and my three dear children to care for, I realised how much energy I am spending on continuously trying to plan. It was in this moment I realized that I have my long term goals and plans in place. I dont have to do them again and again. I can just choose for this moment – NOW.

Choose to be happy playing with my children NOW.

Choose to be happy cooking for my children NOW.

Choose to be content that I am resting for my good health NOW.

I can Choose to allow my life to flow as it is NOW, instead of trying to control it, when there is no need to control.

I realise how hard it is for us to release our plans due to ill-health(this is not in my plannnn, come on, how can I accept it?). I have definitely learnt a lesson in these days to accept what is not in my control.

Even now, as I am recovering, and when fatigue engulfs me, I allow myself to drift off. I pray to get well soon, and catch-up with my plans. But, I will continue to practice to flow with life. I will continue to practice to ALLOW myself to flow with life…