Friday, July 31, 2009

Are Knowledge Workers the Leaders in 21st Century?

"The most important, and indeed the truly unique, contribution of management in the 20th Century was the fifty-fold increase in the productivity of the manual worker in manufacturing. The most important contribution management needs to make in the 21st Century is similarly to increase the productivity of knowledge work and the knowledge worker." Drucker (1999, p135)

Who is a Knowledge Worker?

“This is the nature of genius, to be able to grasp the knowable even when no one else recognizes that it is present.” - Deepak Chopra

Knowledge workers are the people with specialized area of interest. They stand different from others in their knowledge, competence, skills and abilities. They define the problems unconventionally, think creatively and innovatively and follow uncharted path for finding solutions to problems. They involve in lot of research and consultancy. These people add value to the existing knowledge with modified and updated content pertaining to their specific domain. It was Peter Drucker who coined the term Knowledge Worker way back in 1959 in his book ‘The landmarks of Tomorrow’.

Characteristics of a Knowledge Worker:

"We know now that the source of wealth is something specifically human: knowledge. If we apply knowledge to tasks we already know how to do, we call it 'productivity'. If we apply knowledge to tasks that are new and different we call it 'innovation'. Only knowledge allows us to achieve these two goals." (Drucker 1992 p23)

Knowledge workers are basically passionate people whose primary aim is to achieve something big and unique. For them, money is the secondary motivational factor. They are cut above the rest and follow the road less traveled. They love challenges and changes and they love to live on edge. They have huge appetite for knowledge and always crave for creating something new. They have passion for learning and growing. In a nut shell, it is connected to their brain rather than brawn.

Knowledge workers take pride in what they do. They are passionate learners. They aim and dream big. They are different but not indifferent. They care less about others. They are highly task oriented and always strive for hitting the bulls’ eye. They have global mindset. They are more loyal to their peers than to their employers. Those who hail from the background of teaching, training, consultancy, business and research can become successful knowledge workers. Their output cannot be measured easily like any other manual work. They focus on quality of work not quantity. These people demand lot of freedom and autonomy. These people have to be handled with soft skills so as to extract their hard skills.

Why Evolution of Knowledge Workers?

"Making knowledge workers productive requires changes in attitude, not only on the part of the individual knowledge worker, but on the part of the whole organization." (Drucker, 1999, p156)

The industrial revolution led to the birth of middle class people. The growing services sectors in the 20th century led to the birth of knowledge workers. With the growing rapid technology, the aspirations and expectations of the people are raising rapidly. The companies are also looking at the ways and means to beat competition. Innovation and creativity is the key to stay ahead of competition. Therefore, they are focusing on specialized services and products for the benefit of customers. To do all these things, they bank on the support of knowledge workers.

Companies prefer to recruit knowledge workers as it saves their precious time, money and energy in providing training. It is like having plug and play recruits. Getting the ready made people is a boon for corporates. They don’t hesitate to pay more for the specialized skills set. The costs are far lesser than what they spend on fresh recruits.

What does it take to be a Knowledge Worker?

"Knowledge workers use their intellect to convert their ideas into products, services or processes" - Miller WC, Fostering Intellectual Capital.HR Focus, 1998

The world is going to be dominated by the services sectors where the role of knowledge workers plays a key role. However, it is not easy to manage them. They want more freedom and autonomy.

They could be stubborn and adamant. They should not be treated like any other employees. They are different and unique. They thrive on challenges and love to experiment on their new ideas and insights. They want more freedom that helps them to be more creative and innovative. It is very difficult to measure their performance.


"The most valuable assets of a 20th-century company were its production equipment. The most valuable asset of a 21st-century institution, whether business or non-business, will be its knowledge workers and their productivity." (Drucker 1999, P135)

Knowledge workers are an asset for every organization. In fact, they are the leaders in this 21st century. They can share and spread their knowledge across the world for the benefit of mankind. There is also a huge potential lying untapped in this domain. Encouraging and providing conducive environment for their research and consultancy is needed.

The future belongs to knowledge workers. The world is going to be ruled by specialists who have specific and exclusive competencies and key skills and abilities. If you want to get noticed and spotted and remembered, evolving as a knowledge worker is the right solution.

The End

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Recession and Depression - Prof.M.S.Rao

Currently recession has becomes one of the reasons for depression. People developed fear psychosis about their possible lay-offs. Those who have been retrenched have the probability of getting into depression. Those who are at the verge of getting fired have their own apprehensions. Apart from the loss of loved ones and lack of fulfillment of sexual desires, the financial problems may also lead to depression.

People should treat recession as an opportunity rather than as a threat. Those who have potential don’t have to worry for their employment as they can be absorbed anywhere and elsewhere. Recession is not a threat for workaholics. People can start their own enterprises. Many enterprises have come up during the economic downtown. People should not lose their confidence. They can go for freelancing. They can start their home based businesses. They can pursue their passionate areas which hitherto have been neglected due to regular employment. In addition, they can convert their passion into a profitable business opportunity. People should be optimistic rather than being pessimistic in their approach. They should not get into the trap of depression. Those who have been laid off can convert their threats into opportunities.

How to Overcome Depression?

“Do not brood over your past mistakes and failures as this will only fill your mind with grief, regret and depression. Do not repeat them in the future.” - Sivananda

Although technology has brought out several advantages to the mankind it has also brought out several disadvantages. One of the major demerits is depression. Depression was prevailing even in the ancient days. But it has become rampant now due to the growing complexities and uncertainty in the world.

What is depression?

Depression is a state of mind where an individual is anxious due to several reasons. It is a state where an individual constantly broods about a problem which may be imaginary or real. It is a kind of sinking feeling and void. Depression is not mere sadness. It is beyond sadness. When people are let down by their loved ones they get depressed. When people don’t reach their cherished goals and objectives, they get depressed.

In the olden days, people used to approach religious leaders or gurus whenever they had the symptoms of depression. They used to ask several questions and diagnose the problem by boosting the confidence of the afflicted person.


There are several causes for getting into depression. Repeatedly thinking about the negative happenings of the past may lead to depression. We all make mistakes. There is nothing to recall repeatedly about the mistakes. Mistakes help us to grow as refined individuals provided we learn lessons. Both genetic and biological factors are also responsible for depression. It may affect more among the weak willed persons.

Successive failures may result into depression thinking that there is something wrong with the approach. The problem lies in rectifying the approach rather than being unduly worried about the approach. At times, workplace conflicts may lead to depression. When are not understood well by others they tend to get depressed. In such situations, talking to the people directly is the only solution. Lack of love and affection from near ones, feeling loneliness, early childhood abuse, financial problems, substance abuse, and alcoholism give rise to depressed state of mind.

When people do something guilty and when something is done against their wishes they may get into depression. The bad memories will haunt them forever. Usually neurotransmitters that occur in brain and hormonal imbalances are responsible to depression. When they are in deep water they will feel it. When they are in financial debt the depression starts.

When divorced people don’t find right partners to share their feelings and sex, they may develop depression. When the sexual desires are not fulfilled due to lack of body chemistry between wife and husband, it may result into depression.

The challenge in the present world is that everybody wants to be a leader and nobody likes to a follower. People want success in overnight and in some cases they want success at any cost. When people set unrealistic goals they will not be able to achieve resulting into desperation. Likewise there are number of causes responsible for depression.


There is lot of negative fallout arising out of depression. When people are in depression entire world looks to be bad, the people around themselves appear to be bad and in fact they feel bad about themselves. The afflicted people may not get sound sleep which is known as insomnia (sleeplessness) or may sleep for longer time which is known as hypersomnia (oversleeping). People develop anxiety and unfounded fears and phobias and it may also lead to dysentery. It may also lead to lack of concentration and appetite, irritability and in few cases it may lead to suicidal tendencies.

How to Overcome?

“Good humor is a tonic for mind and body. It is the best antidote for anxiety and depression. It is a business asset. It attracts and keeps friends. It lightens human burdens. It is the direct route to serenity and contentment.” - Grenville Kleiser

Depression is like any other ailment and it can be cured. It is essential to find the underlying causes of depression. Once those are found, it is easy to address the problem through right medication and psychotherapy. Psychotherapy plays a crucial role in overcoming the depression. Psychotherapy is the process of treating the afflicted by involving in conversation. It helps in digging out what is bugging the afflicted and finding the appropriate solutions to the problem. Below are a few tips to overcome from depression.

• Everyone feels depression at some point of time. Don’t succumb to depression. Fight back. Don’t become hopeless and helpless.
• Seek professional help. Consult psychotherapists and experts who can counsel you.
• Always surround with positive and motivated individuals.
• Go for meditation or yoga.
• Never brood over issues but think over ideas.
• Listen to soft music or the music that touches and energies you.
• Break your thought process by switching to other creative and constructive areas and activities.
• Write down what is bugging you. It vents out our inner feelings.
• Always engage your mind in progressive and developmental activities.
• Never think that it is the end of life. Think that it is only towards betterment.
• Keep your mind in your control. Don’t let depression control your mind.
• Share your feelings and emotions with others as it unburdens you. It will also give rise to new ideas to overcome depression.
• Go to a serene place and coolly analyze what bugs you. It will provide solutions.
• Hit gym regularly and do workout as it helps you raise your energy and enthusiasm.
• Be in the company of people who have sense of humor and enjoy their company.
• Focus more on your passionate areas and hobbies. These would kick start your mind with positive vibrations.
• Self-hypnotism helps in overcoming depression.
• Regular open discussions by parents with their children will help free flow of ideas about the problems and prospects within the family members.
• Build bridges not barriers. Develop supporting relations at the workplace so that you can share your problems if any. It provides ventilation to your hidden emotions and feelings resulting into relaxation of your mind.


“Remember that there is nothing stable in human affairs; therefore avoid undue elation in prosperity, or undue depression in adversity.” – Socrates

No one has the right to depress you. You alone are responsible if you are depressed as you allowed your mind to get depressed. Depression is a common illness. It exists among all individuals at some point of time in their lives. The intensity varies. When it goes at peak level then it is the time to take a relook at it and take immediate corrective action. It is problematic when it goes extreme and unmanageable.

The world has become highly complex. The children should be inculcated with confidence so that they don’t get into depression. They should be taught to handle the challenges of life right from childhood itself so that they will be confident to take on the challenges in their lives. They become independent as well.

Look at things positively; possess positive attitude, right attitude and strong attitude to avoid depression coming closer to you. Learn to empathize with others rather than feeling sorry for the events or blaming others. Look at the problems on a clean slate. Depression is a state of mind and everybody can overcome easily provided they accept and realize that they have depression and take remedial measures immediately. People, in general, assume that their problems are bigger than that of others. But in reality, people don’t realize that others also have the problems probably bigger than them.

To sum up, past cannot be changed and future cannot be predicted. Therefore, learn to live in the present to avoid depression.

The End

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Publishers May Contact Prof.M.S.Rao, Corporate Trainer in Leadership Development and Soft Skills

Dear All,

You may contact me if you have any requirement of articles or if you want to me to author any book in the domain of Leadership Development, Soft Skills, Corporate Training, Human Resources, Entrepreneurship and Self-Improvement aspects. My contact details are:

Email: profmsrce@yahoo.com, profmsr7@gmail.com,

To view sample of my contributions, you may visit my blog: http://profmsr.blogspot.com

Thanks & Regards,

Prof.M.S.Rao, India

Trainer, Teacher and Writer.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Financial Freedom is Fortitude

"Freedom is not merely the opportunity to do as one pleases; neither is it merely the opportunity to choose between set alternatives. Freedom is, first of all, the chance to formulate the available choices, to argue over them -- and then, the opportunity to choose." - C. Wright Mills

The 21st century has thrown several challenges to mankind. Apart from creating lot of uncertainty and complexity with the drastic changes in rapid growing technology, it also made people to think deeply about financial freedom. Man cannot survive without money. Money has become almost a necessary evil. In the name of acquiring money, many people struggle a lot and a few make mistakes to earn money for their survival and few make mistakes to amass wealth. People are made to think that money is success, although it is not.

Money will not buy happiness but it provides a sense of security. Money is only a means not an end. Unfortunately, for many people, money has become an end resulting into unethical practices. In this context, let us know what is all about financial freedom.

What is Financial Freedom?

“Lack of money is the root of all evil.” - George Bernard Shaw

What do you mean by financial freedom? Is it having sufficient money to live off forever without working? Is it having income more than expenses? Is it being debt free? Is it the freedom to do anything and everything with money? It is very difficult to define financial freedom as there is no yardstick to measure. It is, in fact, a complex one. Financial freedom differs from person to person.

Financial freedom is more about your attitude towards money rather than about the amount of money you have. It is also about having sufficient money to lead your life comfortably without any botheration. It is not being too much rich but being comfortable with sufficient financial reserves to back you up in case of any eventuality. It is like having money beyond your break even point i.e. the point where your income flow is higher than expenses.

There are two types of incomes such as active and passive income. In active income, the individual is actively involved in generating income. On the other hand, in passive income the money flows without active involvement of the individual. The rental income, returns on share market investments, income as a sleeping partner in business etc. fall in the category of passive income.

Tips for Financial Freedom:

“Money isn't everything--but it's a long way ahead of what comes next.” - Edmund Stockdale

• Sit in a quiet place and ponder ways towards financial freedom.
• Develop a positive attitude towards money.
• Minimize spending and maximize savings.
• Generate multiple sources of income.
• Don’t save until you clear your debts, if any.
• Go for cost cutting wherever it is possible.
• Buy in cash not on credit as the cost of the goods will go up on credit purchases thereby denting your reserves.
• Be good at accounting and budgeting. Many people fail miserably in these two areas resulting into financial chaos.
• Work hard and work smart as well. You need to make sure that your money should make money. Your money should rotate.
• Set SMART financial goals where S stands for specific, M for measurable, A for achievable, R for reachable and T for time-bound.
• Diversify the risk. Don’t keep all eggs in one basket. Invest little in savings, little in share market, in gold, in land and in other areas. In case of crisis in one area, the other areas can back you up.
• Work from home, if possible. Now –a-days, there are so many opportunities to generate incomes through home based businesses.
• Convert your passion into profession and make your passion as a business opportunity.


“Earn all you can, save all you can, give all you can.” - Charles Wesley

Only when you have financial freedom you will be able to concentrate on other creative pursuits. Have the mindset of a rich person. It is all there in your mind. If you have mindset and urge to make money you can definitely make money. Penny saved is penny earned. Cultivate savings attitude. Save for the rainy day as the life is full of uncertainty and complexity.

Financial freedom is all about your attitude towards money and your aptitude to make money. Old notion of ‘making money is a sin’ is to be wiped out. Parents need to cultivate right attitude about financial freedom among their children in the initial stage itself as they learn to save, manage and enjoy money. It helps them to know the value of money and how it plays a crucial role in having comforts and facilities and leading a successful and peaceful life. To conclude, financial freedom is, indeed, fortitude.

The End

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Punctuality is the Key to Your Success

“I could never think well of a man's intellectual or moral character, if he was habitually unfaithful to his appointments.” - Nathaniel Emmons

How do you feel when your flight is delayed throwing your entire plans out of gear? How do you feel when a patient dies due to the unpunctuality of a doctor? How do you feel when you miss a job opportunity due to the delay of your car driver? How do you feel when you find people who are late and don’t have the elementary courtesy of expressing regret for their delay? Imagine and think. You get annoyed over the people for not being punctual resulting into several implications and complications.

What is Punctuality?

“Punctuality is the politeness of kings.” - Louis XVIII

Punctuality is a habit where an individual does things on time. It is one of the secrets for success and one of the hallmarks of leaders. Punctuality means being systematic maintaining everything in orderly manner and completing the task and being available on time. Punctuality is etiquette. Punctuality is all about doing things timely and being aware of the importance of time. It helps in managing ones own time thereby respecting others’ as well.

Punctuality is also doing things timely and being aware of the importance of time. It helps in managing ones own time thereby respecting others as well. Being punctual is a sign of discipline. Defence personnel are trained to be disciplined and are punctual. They stick to punctuality whether it is rain or shine. Succinctly, it is an attitude to be on time at a destined place.

Advantages of Punctuality:

“I have always been a quarter of an hour before my time, and it has made a man of me.” - Lord Horatio Nelson

Punctuality helps in better time management, time discipline and it projects and presents your personality positively to others. It indicates how much concern and respect you have towards others to whom you have given your appointment. It is like valuing others and their time and sends right signals for others. You don’t have to cut a sorry figure for being late when you are punctual.

If you know how to manage your time properly then you will learn how to be punctual. When people maintain punctuality, work can be executed smoothly and successfully. If people don’t stick to deadlines, they tend to procrastinate culminating into delays and stress. If you are punctual you can avoid stress and anxiety and gain respect among others. If you waste one minute of your time you are wasting one minute of your life. In a nut shell, punctuality saves your precious time as well as others. You command respect among all. You will have peace of mind as things roll out as per the schedule. Finally, you can be in the good books of all.


"The trouble with being punctual is that nobody's there to appreciate it." - Jones, Franklin P.

Excessive work may result into postponement thereby delaying other activities. Lack of seriousness on the part of individuals and taking things lightly may result into procrastination. When people don’t maintain diary they don’t remember the program schedule. In few cases, people forget their commitments and appointments as they are preoccupied with other activities. Improper planning of work may lead to accumulation of the tasks resulting into further delays. Finally, when people are not smart at time management skills, it may lead to unpunctuality.


"If I have made an appointment with you, I owe you punctuality, I have no right to throw away your time, if I do my own." - Cecil Richard

The repercussions of unpunctuality are many such as building up tension resulting into stress and fatigue. It brings disrespect to the individuals and they lose their name, fame and dignity. They will be branded as late Lathiefs (proclaimed late comers). It is very difficult for these people to climb the ladder of success at the workplace. If you delay by 15 minutes and the people waiting for you, for instance, are 10 then you wasted 150 minutes of their precious time. Is it proper to make others’ time unproductive?

Tips to be Punctual:

"We are not saints, but we have kept our appointment. How many people can boast as much?" - Beckett Samuel

• Develop a positive mindset to be punctual.
• Initially, it requires lot of practice to be punctual.
• Set your mental clock as it guides you properly on time.
• Learn to respect your time as well as others’ time.
• Maintain a diary of your appointments to avoid disappointments.
• Plan and organize your life properly and stay focused.
• Praise the people who are punctual as it encourages others to be punctual.
• Keep slogans everywhere such as ‘Thanks for being punctual’ as it generates awareness and corrects those who don’t fall in line.


"Know the true value of time; snatch, seize, and enjoy every moment of it. No idleness, no delay, no procrastination; never put off till tomorrow what you can do today." - Chesterfield, Lord

The habit of punctuality should be developed from the childhood itself from parents and teachers. Become a role model and worthy personality to be taken seriously by others.
Sometimes, a few people deliberately delay themselves to have their absence felt. It is not a good sign. Punctuality brings lot of difference in your life. Be punctual always in your life irrespective of your domain, area or sector. It pays to be punctual in this competitive world. Punctuality is the key to your success.

The End

Monday, July 20, 2009

Is Teaching an Extension of Research?

“Research is to see what everybody else has seen, and to think what nobody else has thought” - Albert Szent-Gyorgyi

Any academic institution should have both knowledge creation and knowledge dissemination. These are two sides of the same coin and one without the other has no meaning. However, in India we emphasize more on knowledge dissemination and less on knowledge creation. While knowledge creation is all about research and knowledge dissemination is about teaching. Premier institutions in India emphasis on these both and as a result, they have become the backbone for our country like IITs and IIMs and other reputed educational institutions.

As an individual is judged by the friends he or she maintains, an educational institution is also judged by the research it focuses. In western countries, research is stressed along with teaching, while it is not so in India. Very few premier educational institutions in India treat research as an integral part of teaching.

Example of Richards as a Researcher:

Richards having worked as a teaching faculty joined in a research center as a researcher where he had to deliver books in the domain of Soft Skills and Leadership Development. He had passion to author couple of books and, in fact, it was his lifetime ambition. Basically he had flair for writing and speaking. He thought that having couple of authored books would add value to his resume. In addition, he felt that it would also widen his intellectual base. After having several books written, he decided to come back to teaching which was his passionate area. When he went for an interview, the interviewing officer posed the question of joining back to teaching from research. The officer doubted whether Richards could deliver his goods effectively as a teaching faculty as he came from research background.

Richards replied that research becomes an integral part of teaching. He further added that a person coming from a research background could do better justification than a person coming from mere teaching background. He asserted that research was an extension of teaching and it would add value to teaching as he was backed and packed with lot of information, ideas and knowledge. The interviewing officer was impressed with the response and Richards was selected. Finally, Richards did commendable job as a teaching faculty far better than earlier i.e. when he merely had teaching but not research experience.

From the above case study of Richards, it becomes very clear about the importance and significance of research for ensuring qualitative teaching. It is necessary to blend both research and teaching for imparting qualitative and effective education.

Research Vs Teaching:

Research involves in knowledge creation and generation while teaching involves in knowledge dissemination. If research is the infrastructure then teaching is the superstructure. Research provides enriching experience for both faculty and students. It also promotes better relations and understanding between the teacher and the taught.

When a faculty member delivers teaching without having undergone any research there will be certain mental blocks and gaps while teaching. In contrast, when a researcher takes up teaching activity s/he is well equipped with vast knowledge. Since the faculty member has research background he or she is able to deliver lecture extempore. In addition, it enhances the confidence of the faculty member. The students will also enjoy the teaching sessions as the latest and unexplored areas are addressed while teaching. That means teaching beyond text books. There will be more arousal of students’ interest towards the teaching process resulting into effective imparting of knowledge and information and education. The faculty member also enjoys respect in the eyes of the students.

Students raise several questions during the course of interaction. It provides adequate triggers for the researcher to explore further and expand farther. It helps in out of the box thinking. Besides, it helps in reinforcing what is researched.

There is no point in doing research continuously and acquiring knowledge when it is not shared and imparted to the students. Knowledge grows when shared. Sharing of knowledge pays off for both faculty and students as there is an exchange of ideas, information, thoughts and knowledge. It unlocks creativity and generates new triggers for further research. People with research background can become more successful faculty than the one without.


It is time Indian Universities focused equally on research and teaching to impart quality education to the students. It would have ripple effect on the students and on the nation as a whole. Research is an integral part of teaching. Any separation between research and teaching jeopardizes the educational system adversely resulting into poor performance of students. Therefore, research and teaching must go together. We can go to the extent of concluding that teaching is an extension of research rather than the research is an extension of teaching.

The End

“Formula for Success” From Prof.M.S.Rao

"Formula for success: Under promise and overachieve." - Tom Peters

Success is the sweetest word that excites all of us. But everyone cannot reach it. Only a few can reach it. Why is it so? Is there any magic wand for the successful people?

Success is the confluence of several ingredients such as passion, vision, mission, execution and feedback. Whenever you want to achieve something in your life, you must know what you love the most-passion. Passion is like fire brewing in the heart and if tapped becomes an inferno. Passion is closely connected to more of heart than mind. It is more of chemistry than physics. Passion does not settle for less. It craves for more. It doesn’t let you sleep. It keeps you on toes. It makes you restless. It excites you. It is a typical scenario where it makes you highly focused and task oriented.


“The key that unlocks energy is desire. It's also the key to a long and interesting life. If we expect to create any drive, any real force within ourselves, we have to get excited. “- Earl Nightingale

Don’t ape other successful people blindly as it ends up in a fiasco. What clicks others may not click you. What is required is to find out what touches your heart the most. What are the areas of interest that drives you and gives you kick for moving ahead? Most of the people successful in the world are basically passionate in what they did. They did what excited them. They did what brought joy while doing. They tapped their inner talents. They discovered their hidden strengths. They carried forward their raw abilities ruthlessly.


"A person without a goal is like a ship without a rudder." - Denis Waitley

The second successive ingredient for success is vision. It clearly tells you where to go in your life. It reminds you of your present status in life. It directs you in a specific direction based on your passion. Most of the successful people are visionaries. They know what they want where they want to go in their lives. They set their directions properly and move ahead successfully. Succinctly, it is like placing the ladder on the right side of the wall.


"Spectacular achievement is always preceded by unspectacular preparation." - Robert H. Schuller

The third ingredient for achieving success is mission. It tells you how to go. Once the direction has been set, the mission unveils the methods, tools and techniques involved in following a specific direction. It reminds of the resources that are essential for following your path to success. It is at this journey the constant efforts and energies are essential to move toward success. It is necessary to equip the skills and abilities for achieving towards. In brief, it is like climbing the ladder.


"Thinking is easy, acting is difficult, and to put one’s thoughts into action is the most difficult thing in the world." - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

The fourth ingredient toward success is execution. It is the toughest task. It is easier said than done. There will be number of practical bottlenecks that hinder the path to success. There are both internal and external forces and factors contribute towards execution. The internal factors can be easily managed as things are very much within human control. Self-discipline, self-motivation, hard work, perseverance, determination and grit will play a crucial role. The external environmental factors which are beyond human control may disturb the path to success. A few call these as fate. Few call the same as luck. It can either make you or break you as a successful person. People who have high internal locus of control don’t believe in destiny. These people strongly feel that their destiny is in their hands. They try to control the external environment as far as possible. If they are not able to manage and face setbacks during the process, they pursue their execution with more energy and enthusiasm. The difference between the successful and unsuccessful people is only effective execution. It will tip the scale towards success.


“If you can't fly, run!
If you can't run, walk!
If you can't walk, crawl!
But whatever you do, keep moving towards your goal........” -Martin Luther

The last ingredient for achieving success is taking feedback. It is a review process where in you look at how far you reached your goals and objectives. If you failed to reach why did you fail? How to overcome the failures and what remedial measures can be taken to pursue the path towards success. Feedback helps in aligning your efforts effectively towards your goals and objectives. Confucius aptly put it, "When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the goals, adjust the action steps."


"Don't lower your expectations to meet your performance. Raise your level of performance to meet your expectations. Expect the best of yourself, and then do what is necessary to make it a reality." - Ralph Marston

The road to success is not a cakewalk. It requires lot of struggles and sacrifices. To sum up, you need to be passionate in whatever you undertake. You have to set out your goals and objectives which becomes vision. You set out a clear path or roadmap towards your success and that is known as mission. Mere words won’t pay you but deeds play a crucial role for ensuring success which is execution. Finally, it is equally necessary to take stock of the situation periodically for remedial and correction action which is known as feedback. When all these ingredients are effectively integrated success would touch your toes.

“A Warrior Doesn't Give Up What He Loves... He Finds the Love In What He Does.” - Socrates

The End

Friday, July 17, 2009

Note Taking Tips from Prof.M.S.Rao

"Never use a sentence when you can use a phrase, or a phrase when you can use a word" -Berkeley.

What is Note Taking?

Note taking is an art and the process of writing the content in a shorthand format in an unstructured manner without losing the essence for future reference and records. Usually, the speaking rate is faster than the writing. When any lecture takes place the entire information can not be written by the listeners. Therefore, the key and important information is written succinctly in a note book. It is a skill any one can cultivate and inculcate through right application of tools and techniques. There is also software related to this, which is known as note taking software that has several advantages.

Merits of Note Taking:

Note taking helps in absorbing and memorizing the material effectively due to the muscular movement of hand. It helps in broadening your mental faculties. It saves time and energy. It helps in bridging the gap between speaking and writing. It can be used for future references.

Dos and Don’ts during Note Taking:

1. Focus on the content not on the speaker.
2. Listen attentively to the speaker.
3. Write clearly and legibly for your clarity.
4. Write the key words.
5. Write only what is required.
6. Don’t write lengthy sentences.
7. Don’t sit beside your colleague as you may be disturbed during note taking.
8. Don’t divert your mind here and there.

Note Taking Tips:

Studies on memory have shown that, without review, 47% of what a person has just learned is forgotten in the first twenty minutes and 62% is forgotten after the first day - (University of Texas at Austin). (Reference: http://jerz.setonhill.edu/writing/academic/notes-tips.htm)

• Develop a positive mindset about the speaker and the content as it encourages you towards note taking.
• Be attentive and listen carefully to the speaker.
• Create and develop your own method of taking notes which helps to decode as and when required.
• Write on one side of the paper so that extra information, or ideas or insights can be added later on.
• Create your own shorthand style to note down the key content that is relevant.
• Pay your attention closely and keenly on the content.
• Divide the page into three columns. In the first column write down what was taught in the class in key words. In the second column, write down the same in an elaborate form after reading from the text. In the third column, write down the queries to be posed to the teacher, if any. It saves your precious time as you don’t have to duplicate the content freshly in another page book. In addition, this approach aligns the entire information in depth and making the information available on a platter.
• Use different colored highlighters to accord the priority of importance.
• Research reveals that we can recall what was taught in the class within 24 hours only by 80 per cent. Therefore, jot down immediately after the class what was said if you don’t find time during the class.
• By referring textbook material before being delivered you get to know idea about the topic. Secondly it will help you to jot down what is not there in the text. By this way, note taking adds value to your knowledge as you get knowledge beyond books delivered by the teacher.
• Maintain separate notebook per subject wise. It helps in organizing the things properly and also saves your time and avoiding stress arising out of searching for the content.


“A short pencil is always better than a long memory.”

Students can do well with note taking skills. It is a skill anyone can develop and hone. In schools, note taking skills should be taught as it saves time and helps in better memory retention.

Teacher should write key content and concept on the board as it helps both the teacher and students. For teacher, it helps to teach better in the next class due to the muscular movement the key facts can better be remembered. For students, it becomes easier to write and also helps in separating grain from the chaff. Therefore, brush up your note-taking skills to achieve optimum results.

The End


Reference: http://jerz.setonhill.edu/writing/academic/notes-tips.htm

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Memory Tips for Students - Prof. M.S.Rao

“Some memories are realities, and are better than anything that can ever happen to one again.” - Willa Cather

People often confuse between weak memory and poor recollection. They complain of weak memory. In fact, it is not weak memory but poor collection of information. How sad it is when you cannot recall the name of a person you met in the past. What impression does it convey to other person when you regrettably say that you forgot his name?

In this busy and competitive world people forget the telephone numbers, passwords and pin numbers. It not only stops the work but also causes irritation for not remembering. Sometimes, you curse yourself for not remembering the things. There are several tools and techniques by which you can improve your memory. It is not a big challenge but it requires little more concentration and effort. Human brain is highly complex. You must know how to make use of it to improve your memory. In this context, it is desirable to know briefly about memory.

What is Memory?

“Memory is the diary that we all carry about with us” – Oscar Wilde.

Memory is a mental activity where in stored information is recalled and retrieved as and when required. It is divided into two types: short-term and long-term. In short-term memory, the information is stored for a few seconds or minutes. In contrast, in long-term memory, the information is stored for longer duration. When people listen to others, they feed in their memory automatically whether to register for short-term or long-term depending on the importance of information.

Memory Tips:

"All improvement in memory consists of one's habitual method of recording facts" - Dr. William James.

• Open up your mind and instruct to encode new information.
• Concentration is the key to good memory. Explore ways to enhance your concentration.
• Stay focused on one thing at a time. Don’t go for multitasking. Whenever you feel that the information is important you need to put in more efforts and concentration so that you can remember well.
• Avoid noises, interruptions and external disturbances while listening.
• Do things slowly as it reinforces your memory.
• Call people by names when introduced. For instance, “It is my pleasure to meet you, Robert”. Associate name of the people with well known people you have already registered in your mind for better retention. Create visual pictures in your mind.
• When you speak louder you can remember better as you listen to your own voice. Maintain diary to jot down the important information.
• Prioritize the information while receiving. It helps in retaining the importance information. Instead of typing the information, you may write with your hand as the muscular memory will be activated resulting into storing the information.
• There are several games on television and online to enhance your memory. Playing the same will prove to be helpful.
• Assimilate the information rather than reading the content for the sake of reading. It aids your memory.
• If you find it difficult to memorize large content, you can break it into small parts. Memorize each small part and mentally compile the same for final memorization.
• Relate the information with your real live events through pictorial visualization as it helps in recollection.
• Research reveals that humans can remember between 5 to 9 items at a time. If you can break the information between 5 to 9 items then it becomes easy for you to remember and recollect.
• People have natural tendency to remember rhymes and rhythms. Therefore, convert your content accordingly for effective memory.
• Go to bed without overly worried about anything. If you go to bed thinking about the problems then you get better solutions by the next day morning.
• Relax your mind when blocked with memory recall. Engage your mind on other issues. To your surprise you will recall whatever you wanted as your brain searches for the information.
• Avoid anxiety and stress as it blocks your memory. Adopt relaxation techniques.
• Make use of your inner dialogue. Every individual involves in self-talk which is also known as inner dialogue. Repeated conversation within your mind reinforces and aids your memory.
• When your talk new concepts with others, it not only improves your communication skills but also aids in memorizing complicated information.
• The way you exercise your body you should exercise your memory muscles.
• Finally, take nutritious food as it keeps your body and mind healthy. It aids in effective memory.

Memory Techniques for Students:

“The true art of memory is the art of attention.” – Samuel Johnson.

1. Students should review the information they receive in the classroom within a day so that they can retain the same effectively. Jotting down the points taught during the class by teacher helps them to review and revise immediately.
2. Students should focus on the key words while reading the content as it helps them in analyzing, understanding and memorizing the content. Read the content repeatedly if possible.
3. Develop your own mnemonic device where in the first letters of each word have to be framed as a word for better recalling. It helps students especially during examinations.
4. Use highlighters and colored pens while reading the text and apply the same depending on the importance and priority of the content. It helps in saving time and also in better memory.
5. Find out what kind of senses would be comfortable and ideal for you and exploit the same for better memory.
6. “A picture is worth thousand words” goes the saying. Use pictures, graphs and charts to help your memory.
7. Write and rewrite the content repeatedly as it enriches your content apart from aiding your memory.


“Memory is the mother of all wisdom” – Aeschylus.

Memory is not the privilege of a gifted few. If you know that it is a skill you can cultivate easily. But you need to put in efforts regularly for achieving amazing results. Memory tips help everyone including children, students and working people for achieving success. We all are blessed with good memory. Unfortunately, we don’t realize and exploit. Effective utilization of memory helps in better interpersonal relations, builds bridges and ensures all round success.

The End

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Mind Management Tips for Success

“You are the most powerful magnet in the universe! You contain a magnetic power within you that is more powerful than anything in this world, and this unfathomable magnetic power is emitted through your thoughts.” - Rhonda Byrne

The human mind is an enigma. It is very powerful and has vast potential. However, people don’t realize. They look elsewhere without realizing their hidden potential laying within them. Even if few people realize they don’t know how to use their potential up to the hilt. In fact, those who win this world are the ones who know how to spot their hidden potential and realize the same for achieving success.

What is Mind Management?

"The state of your life is nothing more than a reflection of your state of mind." Wayne W. Dyer

Mind management is all about managing the mind effectively and efficiently. It is the process of exploring, analyzing, realizing, planning, organizing, directing, controlling and exploiting human mind for achieving all-round success in personal, professional and social life. It is related to self-awareness, self-introspection and self-development.

Through mind management you can achieve success. First of all, you must know all about mind management. Secondly, there is a methodology to tap and manage your hidden potential. Thirdly, by orienting your potential through right tools and techniques, you can connect to your outside world. And fourthly, by putting sustained efforts and energies regularly, you can achieve success.

Everything is there in your mind. It all depends on your state of thinking and management. Whether you want to have a triumph or a waterloo, it is in your hands. You need to build a right mental attitude through mind management which takes you towards success in your chosen area of interest.

Mind Management Process:

“Formulate and stamp indelibly on your mind a mental picture of yourself as succeeding. Hold this picture tenaciously. Never permit it to fade. Your mind will seek to develop the picture.” - Norman Vincent Peale

As people maintain their physical body by hitting gym, or walking or exercising, they should maintain their mind qualitatively through right process.

Engage your mind everyday with certain targets. Early morning when you wake up from bed, write down what is to be executed so that your mind gets engaged throughout the day about the tasks.

Prepare the list of qualities to be developed. Find out the ways and means to develop the same. Jot down the resources required to reach and get equipped. Build bridges and network with relevant people. Don’t invent excuses. Have firm will power and commitment to see through the things.

We run internal movies within our minds through self-talk. It is a narrator helps in shaping our minds. Whatever the positive or negative actions reflected in our lives is the result of self-talk running in our minds. In fact, you are the director of your mind.

You need to control your emotions, intellect and habits so as to develop right mental attitude. It helps in better mind management.

Everyday when you go to bed, take feedback about the progress of what was done and what has to be done the very next day. When you do so, your mind starts working in a focused manner resulting into success.

Mind management is not possible in overnight. It requires lot of practice to develop a positive mindset. It must become an ingrained habit.

Mind Management Tips:

“Your mind is an instrument, a tool. It is there to be used for a specific task, and when the task is completed, you lay it down. As it is, I would say about 80 to 90 percent of most people's thinking is not only repetitive and useless, but because of its dysfunctional and often negative nature, much of it is also harmful. Observe your mind and you will find this to be true. It causes a serious leakage of vital energy.” - Eckhart Tolle

• Journal whatever pops up in your mind and prioritize. It helps in staying focused and also manages your time.
• Clear your mental clutter. Don’t let negativity creep in your mind. As you sweep your house, you must clean your mind regularly by removing negative thoughts.
• Read good books that will uplift and inspire you.
• Listen to motivational audio tapes everyday.
• Write and visualize affirmations.
• Never criticize, condemn and complain as it keeps your mind free and healthy keeping more space for absorbing positive information.
• Be creative and pursue your passionate areas to keep your mind receptive and flexibility.
• Avoid invalidating people who poison your mind with discouraging and negative comments. They also squash your dreams and limit your thinking.
• Avoid obsessive thinking as it clutters your mind.
• Avoid wet blankets.
• Have only realistic and achievable expectations.
• Have passion for continuous learning and growing.
• Learn to forgive and forget.
• Observe solitude as it reinvigorates and revives your mental powers. In fact, solitude is fortitude.


“What we think determines what happens to us, so if we want to change our lives, we need to stretch our minds.” - Wayne Dyer

Success should start from you and from within yourself. For this, you need to manage your mind. You need to orient your mind towards goals. Once it is done, you need to put in sustained efforts and energies to achieve. If you want to win a battle you need to win it in your mind first and then in real life. Similarly, if you want to achieve success you need to achieve it in your mind so that you can translate into reality.

You can grow you mind the way you grow your body physically. How you nurture your mind is in your hands. What kind of inputs and instructions you give is in your hands. Your results will depend on your efforts. To put it succinctly, your efforts are directly proportional to your results.

Your future is in your hands. Take the right step. Give something back to this world and bring difference in the lives of others.

The End

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Is Indian Media Playing a Constructive Role?

“The current perception I get from the evening news is that the world is dominated by human failure, crime, catastrophe, corruption, and tragedy. We are all tuning in to see how the human mind is evolving, but the media keeps hammering home the opposite, that the human mind is mired in darkness and folly.” - Deepak Chopra

Now-a-days, Indian media is drawing international attention for presenting and projecting more of negative news than positive news. It projects India in a negative light across the world and also it fills the minds of the people in India with negative information.

When the skeletons came out of Satyam scam, media focused repeatedly on the issue without looking at the solutions to come out of the mess where the jobs of around 50,000 employees were at stake and also the image of IT companies and India as a whole. The television channels competed with each other in exaggerating the scam without highlighting the ways and means to come out of mess.


With the opening of media to privatization, more players came into the picture resulting into stiff competition. For their survival and success, these channels began bombarding with lot of spicy and unhealthy content contaminating the minds of the people. The inexperienced journalists and reporters in the media further aggravated the situation. There is no proper code of conduct in the media. Even if it is there, it is not adhered properly.


In other countries too, we find lot of competition among the media channels but they strictly stick to code of conduct. Government should come out with strict guidelines to make the media more accountable and responsible.

The channels are targeting the young population by spicing up its content. Instead, they should focus on the problems related to youth such as unemployment, unemployability and career related issues. The media should encourage and motivate youth in nation building process by playing a constructive and creative role.

There is a strong need to educate the reporters and journalists with ethics. Regular training will make them to fall in line within the system to be effective and ethical. Stringent action should be initiated against the journalists who misinterpret the content. It also sends strong signals to others erring and inefficient journalists.

Press is the fourth pillar in democracy. All four pillars should be strengthened to make the democracy vibrant. Press should focus on progress and growth of the country. India lives in villages. Highlight the problems of farmers and provide the ways and means to come out it. It should focus more on ideas rather than issues. It is rightly said, below average individuals focus on individuals, average individuals on issues and above average individuals on ideas.

There should be decency and decorum in presentation of facts and figures. Everything depends on the way the media presents. It can either twist or report the content as it is. The media cannot survive if it twists the information as people are aware of things with the growing literacy levels. Ultimately it boomerangs on the media itself thereby losing its credibility and relevance. Therefore, media should set its house in order before being rejected by the people.


The media should avoid second guessing. It should fill the minds of the people with positive thoughts and make them think positively. The media can either make or break the democracy. If the media also goes corrupt then there is no difference between media and corrupt politicians. It is also like fence eating the crop scenario. It is time Indian media set its house in order and played a constructive to gain credibility.

The End

Friday, July 10, 2009

What Ails Indian Educational System?

"Education is not the filling of a vessel but the kindling of a flame." – Socrates

Now-a-days, there is a lot of debate about Indian educational system. Many people view that the present system has several flaws and, as a result, we could not produce world class leaders. In this regard, it is relevant to know what the present challenges are.

Present Problems:

Currently Indian education system focuses too much on facts and figures thereby killing the creativity, analytical and reasoning skills among children. It does not encourage questioning by the students. The mindset is so developed that whatever is said by the teachers has to be taken as correct without any cross-questioning. In fact, the mindset is developed by parents themselves as they don’t encourage their children to question elders. All these things lead to regimented and conditioned mindset among children at the initial stage itself. In fact, it is at this stage children develop their inquisitiveness, logical, analytical and thinking skills.

We all are to be blamed for the present mess in the Indian education system such as parents, teachers, authorities and system. Besides, there is less focus on research and development in India.

Psychology of Indian Children:

At home too, parents order their children to obey what elders say. Although it is good in terms of building character and values but it adversely affects their creativity. They develop fear to pose questions. In the classroom, asking questions is not encouraged by teachers. Some children don’t ask questions in the class as they think that others may think as the questions to be foolish. Some children don’t ask questions as they think that teacher may get angry. Some children don’t ask as they think that others may treat as irrelevant.

Children in their tender age don’t have social obligations of failure. They don’t have guilt or shame as their minds are fresh. This is the age where we need to encourage questioning and help them explore themselves without any command and control.

Role of Teachers:

Teach them about the concepts fully. Don’t encourage them to mug up mere texts. Teachers must inspire students. Bring in the live examples and anecdotes that help in content assimilation and absorption among the children. Encouraging conceptual education is the need of the hour.

In few cases, the students adopt self-preparation. Even if the teachers don’t teach, the students are competent to learn through a standardized mechanism. It is a boon in disguise.

Teachers should refer number of books on each topic so as to have diversified and extensive knowledge on the subject. It helps them to widen their intellectual faculties and also enhances their confidence in handling questions in the classroom.

Overcoming Challenges:

We still follow the old pattern of educational system which we adopted from the West. There have been drastic changes in their educational system with the changing times. Unfortunately, we have not overhauled our educational system since long. Commercialization of Indian educational system is another cause for concern. Of course, we need funds to run educational institutions but there is a limit for everything. Somewhere some lines have to be drawn to professionalize Indian educational institutions.

There is shortage of teachers and dearth of infrastructure. The proportional ratio between the teacher and the students in a classroom is widening which requires attention.

The Indian educational system should emphasis more on ethical values and principles. Focus more on personality development, life skills, leadership development and motivation which enable the students to get tuned with the industry immediately after completion of their education. In addition, it builds strong work culture and professionalism.

It is a matter of regret that even after 62 years of independence we stand nowhere in the quality of education. Teachers should be made more accountable and responsible over the performance of their students. They need to be educated first so that they can educate students. Provide proper training to teachers who are not up to the standards. Instead of laying them off for non-performance, train and groom those until they come up to required standards. In addition, continuous training of teachers will also help in getting updated with the changing technology. It also helps them to know latest tools and techniques in teaching methodologies thus making them competent and confident teachers.

Recruit the competent and capable teachers. The authorities should take adequate care in selection of teachers. They should check the aptitude and passion for teaching during selection process. When teachers take to teaching by choice but not by chance the quality of teaching will go up in India.

Taking feedback should be made mandatory even at the primary school level itself as it encourages more accountability and responsibility among the teachers.

Salaries for teachers are very low. If you pay peanuts you get monkeys. Even if tigers join, they turn out to be monkeys over a period of time. When you pay the best you get the best. Therefore, salaries have to be fixed as per the accepted guidelines and standards to make teaching career lucrative and attractive.

There should be change in the mindset of teachers. Teachers don’t encourage questioning. Mere dictating the notes from text books in the classroom does not carry any meaning. In some cases, teachers postpone the questions raised by students. And in some cases, questioning students are penalized.

Teachers should be taught with psychology as it helps in gauging the potential of the students and tailoring their teaching methodology. Indians are poor team workers. They should be taught about team spirit and they should also be taught how to manage group dynamics.

Same teacher should not take too many sessions continuously as it decreases the attention span for students thereby defeating the very purpose of teaching. Teachers too get stressed out of continuous teaching.

Teacher should motivate and inspire students with live examples, anecdotes and short stories. It excites the teaching process.

It is unjust for parents to force their dreams on their children. It stifles their creativity. It is necessary to find out what their children are passionate and encourage them in the same lines.

Government alone cannot bring the drastic changes in the educational system. Involvement of top industrial houses is warranted. The reputed IT companies like Infosys, Wipro and TCS can float their universities to revamp the present educational system.


Swami Vivekananda said "Education is the manifestation of perfection already present in man"

The Indian children work very hard right from the primary educational level itself. The strength of children should not be judged by the weight of their books but by their wealth of knowledge. Their merit should not be judged by their memory but by their analysis, logic and reasoning. The value of the students should not be judged by their paper degrees but by their application. Only when we look at this perspective, we can have qualitative education which will be superior to the developed countries.

Don’t force children to learn. Encourage and facilitate them to learn. Don’t dump them with lot of stuff. Instead, encourage their imagination. And finally, don’t force Indian children to work hard but make them to work smart.

The Indian professionals are in great demand across the world. It is not basically because they hail from reputed educational institutions but because they put in lot of hard work at the work place at the initial years to prove themselves. That is the case of professionals at the workplace. When we look at the students, it is basically their hard working abilities and self-preparation enables them to succeed at the academic level. Even though the quality faculty is not inducted at professional institutions the Indian students excel by the dint of their hard work and self-preparation.

We have the tendency to highlight problems not solutions; we have tendency to talk of barriers not bridges; we have tendency to talk of challenges, but not overcoming them. How can we progress with such mindset?

It is regrettable to note that India with a billion plus population don’t have proportional representation of Noble Laureates. It is time for India to walk the talk and talk the talk.

The End

Sunday, July 5, 2009

“Reinvent Yourself” – Prof. M.S.Rao

“In the middle of every difficulty lies opportunity.” – Albert Einstein.

Robert failed in business and was bankrupt. He was left penniless. He moved to another place where one of his friends helped in arranging accommodation. He joined in a new place with his family. He deeply analyzed for some time for the causes of failure in business. Having good academic qualification, he joined in an educational institution as a teacher. He never regretted about his failure but learnt lessons from them and quickly moved to the next stage and reinvented himself as a teacher. That is the power of education and reinvention.

There are many people like Robert who move on to the next position without brooding over the problems and reinvent themselves successfully. Reinvention is essential not only for individuals but also for companies so as to survive and succeed in the competitive world. With the rapid changes taking place across the world due to technological inventions, reinvention is the key to survival and success. The only thing constant in this world is change and it can be affected only by constantly reinventing oneself. Continuous and constant reinvention helps in coping up with changes that take place in the external environment resulting into achieving all-round success. Let us now know what is all about success in this regard.

What is Success?

“Don't reinvent the wheel, just realign it.” - Anthony J. D'Angelo

You can have anything you want if you really want and are willing to sweat out. Nothing is impossible. Why some people achieve success in their lives is a clear indication that everyone can achieve whatever they want. Find out the path of the successful people and how they reached their goals. What made them stand apart from the rest? Find out their qualities and characteristics. Find out what are the qualities commonly connecting you with such personalities. Acquire what you do not have and follow their path without focusing too much on success. Once it is done consistently and regularly then you don’t have to run behind success rather success will run behind you.

Ron’s Reinvention:

“The only thing new is you finding out about something. Like nothing's really new, but you reinvent it for yourself and find your inner voice.” - Mike Watt

Ron was laid off as a researcher and he immediately reinvented himself. It was an opportunity to renew himself and follow his dreams of teaching. He felt like it was a boon in disguise as he basically had passion for teaching and training. Many people in the organization felt upset over the sudden closure. But Ron was basically highly motivated and optimistic who always looked at the opportunities in every adversary. It took some time for him to get out of the habits of a researcher as the profession needed activities such as sitting with the computer system for long time for searching material in the internet. Besides, he was in the comfort zone for a long time. Gradually, he came out of the comfort zone and leveraged his research skills for blending with teaching and reinvented himself as a successful faculty. Ron’s transformation from being a researcher to a faculty had been smooth as he was adaptable and flexible and knew the knack of taking the best out of his past experience.

Lincoln’s Reinvention:

Take real life examples wherein people rose from nowhere to number one position. Abraham Lincoln reinvented himself number of times. He was almost self-educated without formal school education. He was a businessperson for a brief period where he failed. He learnt lessons and reinvented as a lawyer where he was successful. Subsequently he joined in politics where he had several successive lows. But he was not dejected over his failures. He constantly reinvented himself with the changing political scenario and ultimately became the first Republican and the 16th President of America. Lincoln’s success was the result of constant reinvention.

How to Reinvent Yourself?

“I constantly try to reinvent my sensibilities and my ideas. I enjoy some of the satisfaction that I get when I feel good about what I've done. But the process is quite lonely and quite painful.” - Vincent Gallo

• You have to dream big and afford big.
• You need to have lot of flexibility and adaptability.
• Break your mental barriers and limits.
• Look at successful people who continuously reinvented themselves. Take them as role models as it provides you a source of inspiration and motivation.
• Be clear what you want in life. Set out your goals and get into action.
• Spend some time each morning picturing what you will be doing and it converts into reality.
• Go for regular reading as it opens your mental windows.
• Cultivate the habit of journaling daily. It not only demonstrates your perseverance but also keeps you focused.
• When you merely sit, things don’t happen. Take action, then you will find how things will happen according to you.


“People who cannot invent and reinvent themselves must be content with borrowed postures, secondhand ideas, fitting in instead of standing out.” - Warren G. Bennis

In the Hindu epics, Lord Vishnu had several incarnations. All human beings should reinvent themselves with the changing times. As body changes from cradle to grave, the human mind should also reinvent accordingly. You need to mould your ideas for reinvention. Albert Einstein once defined insanity as doing the same thing and expecting different results. To get different results, you need to put in efforts differently. It again calls for continuous reinvention on your part.

Today turbulent times call for constant reinvention for companies and individuals as well. Reinvention is the mantra for success. If you don’t reinvent with changing times you stand isolated. Life is short and there is no room for regrets. Life comes only once and try your level best. Don’t brood over your failures. Failure is only a comma, not a full stop. Learn lessons from them and proceed forward. Realize the universal truth that every fall has a rise. Have firm faith in yourself. Do something for others. Serve others. Help the needy. Make difference in the lives of others. Leave a mark behind.

The End

Is Killer Instinct Essential for Success?

“To achieve admiration and respect today, the warrior must set himself apart from the rest of society by his personal excellence. Where warriorship was once a birthright, it is now a calling.” —Living the Martial Way

What is Killer Instinct?

“I live on my gut instinct.” - Melanie Brown

Killer instinct is a strong will to win and an urge to succeed unmindful of the consequences for others. It is a fighting spirit. It is not flight but fight to the finish. It is demonstrates ‘do or die’ scenario. It is a combative and competitive mentality to win at any cost.

The killer instinct is confluence of courage, confidence, competence, fortitude, resilience and tenacity. It is combination of physical, mental and spiritual powers. Doing something even if the odds are insurmountable requires killer instinct. It is like having guts to try again whether you succeed or fail. It is like exploring the unknown without any fear of failure. At the same time, killer instinct does not mean being ferocious and careless in your approach. It outlines calculated strategy to maximize efficiency, effectiveness and safety.

How to develop killer instinct?

“I usually go with the first instinct, and then build upon that.” - John Otto

To develop killer instinct, people should shed some of their old habits. In military organizations, soldiers are trained to shed unwarranted habits and practices so that they can evolve themselves as successful and competent combatants. Therefore, it is obvious that killer instinct can be taught through right ambience and training. Killer instinct is a mindset that can be cultivated and inculcated.

• Always be in the effective zone not in the comfort zone.
• Know your strengths and weaknesses and also your opponent’s weaknesses.
• Don’t be overconfident as overconfidence is the worst enemy.
• Don’t be unduly sentimental and emotional. Strike a right balance and maintain composure with maturity.
• Be passionate in your chosen area of interest.
• Always be cool and composed.
• Avoid both internal and external distractions and stay focused on your goals.

Characteristics of killer instinct:

“Ideas pull the trigger, but instinct loads the gun.” - Don Marquis

Here are a few characteristics of killer instinct such as cool and composed thinking, physical and mental intelligence, fortitude, courage, gut feeling and intuition, ability to anticipate others’ strategy, resilience and tenacity, being always in effective zone rather than in comfort zone.


“And so you touch this limit, something happens and you suddenly can go a little bit further. With your mind power, your determination, your instinct, and the experience as well, you can fly very high.” - Ayrton Senna

Killer instinct is a quality we all need whether in life or in work. It helps in conquering the unknown. It will make you nose in the face of difficulty and set out to accomplish your dreams even if it means facing the risk of failure. Although killer instinct is an innate trait but people can cultivate a few skills and abilities that collectively give rise to killer instinct. We find entrepreneurs, sportspersons, soldiers and leaders across various sections achieving success by leading from front with killer instinct.

It is a well admitted fact that we all have killer instinct but the intensity varies from person to person. There is no doubt that killer instinct is essential for achieving success in your life. Therefore, demonstrate your killer instinct and come out with flying colors in all your endeavors.

The End

Saturday, July 4, 2009

“Solitude is Fortitude” – Prof.M.S.Rao

“We live in a very tense society. We are pulled apart... and we all need to learn how to pull ourselves together.... I think that at least part of the answer lies in solitude.” - Helen Hayes

Life is becoming more complex with the rapid changing technology. Stress levels among the people are rising at alarming rates with the rising aspirations and expectations of the people. Companies demand a lot from their employees to beat the stiff competition which is possible only by being innovative and creative in delivery of goods and services. In this process, employees undergo fatigue at the workplace resulting into higher stress levels. Employees also want to prove and survive themselves by going extra mile. It is in this context, solitude is the need of the hour to break stress, anxiety monotony and boredom.

What is Solitude?

“Inside myself is a place where I live all alone, and that's where I renew my springs that never dry up.” - Pearl Buck

People often confuse between solitude with loneliness. In fact, it is not so. Solitude is a state of being alone for a short-term where in there will not be any physical contact with others. It is like taking a break once in a week by totally avoiding the routine work. It is also like taking a short leave for vacation. As people go for fasting without taking food for giving rest to the internal system, people also go for solitude for giving rest to mind for sometime.

Loneliness Vs Solitude:

“We enter the world alone, we leave it alone.” - James Anthony Froude

Often loneliness and solitude are interchangeably used by people. However, there is a thin line separating these both. Loneliness is a negative state whereas solitude is a positive state. Solitude helps in engaging oneself internally with a healthy thought process as a companion. Loneliness reflects missing something in life. It represents isolation. Loneliness depletes mind and body while solitude restores. Loneliness is bitterness while solitude is sweetness. To put it succinctly, solitude is chosen while loneliness is imposed.

Merits of Solitude:

“True silence is the rest of the mind, and is to the spirit what sleep is to the body, nourishment and refreshment.” - William Penn

• It is the best way to get to know about yourself.
• It removes the clutter and purifies your mind thus enhancing your concentration.
• It helps in beating stress levels.
• It helps you dig deep within and brings out the best.
• It helps in better self-awareness, self-control and self-discipline.
• It helps in recouping the lost energies. Besides, it builds fresh energies, enhances creativity and innovation.
• It helps in exploring yourself analytically thus improving your personality for all-round success.
• It replenishes your energies and helps you move further and forward with confidence and optimism.

Solitude is Fortitude:

“No man should go through life without once experiencing healthy, even bored solitude in the wilderness, finding himself depending solely on himself and thereby learning his true and hidden strength.” - Jack Kerouac

When you do routine things you get bored. Then, it is time to go for solitude for self-analysis and introspection. When you want to do things differently, it is time to go for solitude. People go to beaches and spend time in solitude in the sounds of sea waves as it provides solace and strengthens will-power.

History reveals that several great leaders preferred solitude whenever they were in distress. In the epic Mahabharat, at the fag end of Kurukshetra battle, Duryodana underwent inside the water to remain calm for sometime and also to take in fresh energies. It was a kind of solitude. Saints and sages go for solitude to search themselves internally. They go to a serene place and enjoy in a state of solitariness. Therefore, solitude is fortitude.


“Solitude shows us what should be; society shows us what we are.” - Robert Cecil

People should spend sometime in solitude everyday so as to stay healthy physically, mentally and spiritually. It should be treated as an investment and expense of time. Few companies provide sabbatical leave to their employees who work for some period. It helps them to unwind themselves and get back to work with recharged energies. To sum up, it is essential for individuals and institutions to go for solitude regularly keeping in view of the growing uncertainty and complexity due to rapid technology.

“The happiest of all lives is a busy solitude.” - Voltaire

The End

Friday, July 3, 2009

How to Build Your Self-Determination?

“Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will.” – Mahatma Gandhi.

What is Self-Determination?

Self-determination is a cluster of several skills, abilities, knowledge, beliefs, traits and talents that enable people to engage themselves with tons of self-confidence. It comes from your inner strength and courage. It helps to take on the challenges and changes in life with head on. It strengthens your inner belief to take the battle to its logical end. Self-determination is something hidden which can be demonstrated through actions not by external appearance.

Importance of Self-Determination:

“The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will.” - Vincent T. Lombardi

Self-determination is necessary to succeed in life. Self-determination helps in equipping you with necessary strength and courage to meet the day-to-day challenges in your life. Hannibal rightly said, “We will either find a way or make one.”

Self-determination is required to break your conditioned thinking. People, by continuous reading and experience, tend to develop a particular mindset which is hard to break. As the world is changing rapidly with changing technology, people have to develop adaptability to survive in the cut throat competitive world. Self-determination plays a crucial role in breaking the traditional barriers and boundaries.

How to Build Self-Determination?

“Every man is the architect of his own fortune.” - Sallust

• Take an ideal and successful person as a role model and draw inspiration.
• Don’t let past failures haunt you. Learn lessons from failures and try again with optimism and confidence.
• Always look for positive elements in every adversity, defeat or sorrow.
• Be clear about your goals and vision. Find out what you want clearly and create a blueprint to achieve.
• Be sympathetic and empathetic with others.
• Concentrate only on your efforts and energies, not on results.
• Monitor your progress and take continuous feedback.
• Always take care of your mental and physical health.
• Never entertain cynicism and pessimism to creep in your mind.
• Always look for solutions and don’t brood too much on problems.
• Always associate with positive people as it generates positive vibes.
• And finally trust in God.


“I don't know what the future may hold, but I know who holds the future.” - Ralph Abernathy

Self-determination helps you build your hidden potential and you can unleash the same for achieving all-round success as and when required. It is a magical key to success. It turns your adversities into opportunities. To put it in the words of Edward Gibbon, “The winds and waves are always on the side of the ablest navigators.” To sum up, self-determination helps you in becoming an influential personality thus bringing difference in the lives of others.

The End

Personal Branding for Success

"We are judged by what we finish, not what we start." – Anonymous

Personal branding has become the order of the day for recalling and achieving success. It helps you to stand separately from the crowd. You need to be different from others in terms of talents, abilities and skills. There is an urgent necessity to go by the road that is less traveled.

While branding yourself, you have to look at your inherent talents and build your portfolio. Besides, look at your skills and abilities that can support and sustain you toward success. When you combine your truck load of talents with your passionate skills and abilities branding yourself becomes easier task. When you look at famous cricketers like Sachin, Ganguly, Dhoni people recall each cricketer with a specialization although all these three are cricketers. Branding helps in memory recall. Develop your niche areas and project yourself regularly and over a period of time people call you as so and so. Once you are branded, you should not be complacent. Keep reinventing yourself by adopting changes regularly. We can take leaves out of various celebrities like Amitabh, Amir Khan, Shahrukh Khan, Vijay Mallya, etc., in personal branding.

Students and Success - Prof.M.S.Rao

"The young do not know enough to be prudent, and therefore they attempt the impossible - and achieve it, generation after generation." - Pearl S. Buck

Students need to brand themselves in today’s competitive world. Only those who are different from others stand a chance to get employment opportunity during interview. They need to take stock of their strengths and weaknesses. They should look at in which way they are going to add value to the organizations. Such homework before going for interview will help them in separating men from boys. Mere academic knowledge does not pay. They need to have special skills and abilities apart from their academic background. These skills will tip the scales in favor of getting placement. Students need to demonstrate their passion for learning and growing. They must display several skills like soft skills and traits like learning ability, molding ability, adaptability and flexibility during interview selection to get employment.

“Take pride in how far you have come, have faith in how far you can go” – Anonymous.

Blend Your IQ and EQ for Success

“Perhaps you will forget tomorrow the kind words you say today, but the recipient may cherish them over a lifetime.” - Dale Carnegie

An Intelligence Quotient or IQ is a score derived from one of several different standardized tests attempting to measure intelligence (Reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IQ). On the contrary, Emotional Intelligence, also called EI or EQ, describes an ability, capacity, or skill to perceive, assess, and manage the emotions of one's self, of others, and of groups (Reference: http://www.nationmaster.com/encyclopedia/Emotional-intelligence-tests). High EQ is a sign of satisfaction while low EQ is a sign of dissatisfaction. Therefore, high EQ certainly leads to success in personal, professional and social life.

There are standard tools and techniques to measure IQ but it is not so in the case of EQ, which is evolving and changing gradually. The intentions and actions of human beings can not be measured easily. Besides, cross cultural issues complicate the measurement of EQ. There is no yard stick to measure human emotions accurately. However, there are psychological tests to measure the same but the results can not be claimed to be accurate.

IQ helps in academic achievement while EQ helps in career achievement. IQ is synonymous with knowledge while EQ is synonymous with application of knowledge. When it is viewed analytically, it is definitely the application of knowledge is more important than the knowledge itself. It is reported that career success depends on EQ not IQ. Daniel Goleman observes “Simply having an IQ of superior range does not in itself guarantee that they will be superior professionals in their respective areas; the IQ suffers from range restriction in many applied organizational settings and thus is even more limited in its ability to predict performance and career success within a given location.”

In the interviews also the employer looks for emotional adjustability, emotional competence and emotional maturity of the prospective employee. Few people call EQ as soft skills. In this case, it can be equated IQ with hard skills. To put it succinctly, soft skills outsmart hard skills. Therefore, EQ supersedes and surpasses IQ.

Intelligence Quotient (IQ) is inborn; where as Emotional Intelligence Quotient (EQ) is skill that can be acquired but not inborn. Both IQ and EQ are essential for success of any individual, as both are two sides of the same coin.

Attitude Vs Aptitude – Prof.M.S.Rao

"Whenever you're in conflict with someone, there is one factor that can make the difference between damaging your relationship and deepening it. That factor is attitude." - William James

Attitude is related to existing abilities and skills with certain perceptions while aptitude is the potential ability to acquire skills, abilities and knowledge. It can be positive or negative attitude. The positive attitude is known as optimism where as the negative is pessimism. An individual with positive attitude always thinks of winning and staying ahead. On the contrary, the individual with negative attitude always thinks of defeating others thereby trailing behind forever. That draws the thin line between the individual with positive and negative attitude.

An optimist always looks at the prospects in a given problematic scenario. On the other hand, the pessimist always looks at the problems in a given positive scenario. Individuals can change their feelings for better to build right skills and abilities. The attitude can alter the aptitude for higher altitude while aptitude cannot. The blend of both attitude and aptitude ensures success.

Success comes when you use all your energies and efforts in a focused manner. Success does not come when you let the things happen. It comes only when you make the things happen with a right blend of both attitude and aptitude.

Blend Your Talents and Skills for Success

The key that unlocks energy is desire. It's also the key to a long and interesting life. If we expect to create any drive, any real force within ourselves, we have to get excited. " - Earl Nightingale

All human beings are blessed with certain unique qualities which are called as talents. These qualities are acquired from parents. Talents are inborn and are unique. Each individual is unique. One cannot expect even twins alike in talents. On the contrary, skills are the abilities that can be acquired by way of reading, observation, practice, and training. Both talents and skills have to be blended in order to achieve the desired outcome i.e. success. It is necessary to know what the inherent talents are. Knowing yourself better helps you in realizing your hidden potential. SWOT analysis, which is the acronym for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, is the tool to discover your hidden talents, skills and abilities.

SWOT as a tool is widely used by many, in all spheres like civil organizations, political parties, defence organizations and one’s personal life. Knowing your strengths and weaknesses will help you minimize your threats and maximize opportunities. It is very easy to execute this tool at the personal level. You may ask few of your family members to evaluate your strengths and weakness honestly and jot down the same. You may ask your friends who are impartial to judge you in the same lines and take their comments separately. You may also ask your teachers, well-wishers, other than your friends and family members to offer their comments about your personality and take their notes. After having acquired information from multiple sources, take the qualities that are commonly connecting strengths and weaknesses and these could be taken as the accurate qualities. Once you know strengths and weaknesses you can create your road map to success by overcoming weaknesses and capitalizing on strengths. It ultimately leads to success.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Self-Awareness Is Key to Your Success

“The more you know, the less you need to show.” - Anonymous

There are several ingredients essential for achieving success. Of which, self-awareness is one, which is key to success. People are more comfortable in knowing about others than about themselves. A few people have the habit of complaining, condemning and criticizing others’ behavior and nature. They cannot digest when others think and behave with them as they think that they are better than others. In fact, nobody is perfect in this world. We all have our strengths and weaknesses and being aware of the same will help us to become successful persons.

What is Self-Awareness?

“He who knows others is wise. He who knows himself is enlightened.” - Lao Tzu

Self-awareness is all about knowing oneself thoroughly such as attitudes, aptitude, needs, desires, goals, habits, emotions, strengths and weaknesses etc., In brief, it means knowing your personality. Self-awareness is nothing but being conscious about yourself and how you act and react in certain situations.

We all have low level of awareness but think that we know about ourselves better. It is, in fact, wrong. When you know yourself properly, you judge yourself properly and you take your judgments seriously. It requires lot of self-knowledge to be aware of yourself.

Merits of Self-Awareness:

“Don't bother just to be better than your contemporaries or predecessors. Try to be better than yourself.” - William Faulkner

• People with self-awareness stands at better chances of winning the game because they know about themselves. If any mistake is made, they immediately take remedial action as they know about themselves.
• Self-Awareness improves your judgment and decision making skills. It helps in professional and personality development as you overcome your weaknesses.
• It bridges the gap between skills you have and you don’t have and exploits your existing skills up to the hilt.
• It helps in choosing the right career and ensures fast career growth.
• When you know more about yourself, most of the problems in your life are resolved automatically.
• You can become a successful mentor, facilitator, teacher, leader and role model with better self-awareness.

How to Know About Yourself:

“It's surprising how many persons go through life without ever recognizing that their feelings toward other people are largely determined by their feelings toward themselves, and if you're not comfortable within yourself, you can't be comfortable with others.” - Sydney J. Harris

• Take time to think things through. Spend some time to analyze yourself. Self-introspection is essential to be aware about yourself.
• Go for MBTI (Meyers and Briggs Type Instrument) test as it helps you find out what type of personality you are.
• There are several psychometric instruments to know your personality. When such instruments are executed by professional trainers then it becomes easier to know more about yourself.
• Take feedback from your colleagues, friends and relatives. Take their feedback separately so that the common qualities running across the thread can be taken as the correct characteristics.
• Go for meditation as it reveals about your mind. Or go to a serene place and think about yourself to take stock of your qualities.
• Take a notebook and write down your thoughts, ideas and insights. Record the same for analysis and evaluation.
• Take intrapersonal feedback regularly. For this, it is essential to engage in regular inner dialogue.
• Constantly monitor your actions and its fall out.
• Take the help of professional counselors, clinical psychologists and executive coaches who can provide you correct feedback. Find out the inventory of your interests and personality that help in developing your self-awareness.

Ron’s honest feedback about Susan:

“Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.” Carl Gustav Jung

People have tendency to judge others. But they don’t accept when others judge them. Rather they would be shocked with others’ feedback about themselves. Let us look at an example where two colleagues by names, Susan and Ron who worked in an office. They had good relations and gelled with each other well. One day, Susan asked Ron to give feedback as she wanted to know about herself from the perspective of Ron. Ron was straightforward by nature and he analyzed Susan from several dimensions both personally and professionally and prepared a report containing her strengths and weaknesses. It took around a week for Ron to generate the personality report of Susan. He went to the extent of guessing the MBTI personality type of Susan based on her behavior, nature and intellectual temperament.

When Susan saw the report she could not digest and she did not agree with Ron on several areas. Ron clearly said that he was not perfect in assessment but offered feedback the way he provided to several students when he worked as a faculty member in a Business School. Since then, Susan distanced from Ron as she never expected her nature to be like that. It led to severance of their amicable relations finally costing their friendship. The lesson to be learnt out of it is people don’t accept about themselves when others offer their feedback because they think about themselves in a different manner. In fact, there is always gap between an individual’s imagination about himself/herself with that of others.


“The final mystery is oneself.” - Oscar Wilde
Self-awareness is all about being aware of your intentions, actions, emotions, feelings, attitude and aptitude so that you can channel them successfully for achieving all round success – be it personally, professionally and socially.

When you know yourself you grow as an individual. You develop self-acceptance which in turn helps others to accept you as an individual. You become self motivated and it leads to achieving success. Self-awareness enables you to grow in your chosen area of interest. To sum up, success comes to those who have better self-awareness about themselves as it helps in improving themselves by overcoming their weaknesses and reinforcing their strengths.

The End