Do you remember how you felt when you last carried out a random act of kindness? And, how you felt when somebody did something kind for you? Did you not feel gentle waves of uplifting warmth, joyous energy and soothing restfulness wash all over your body?
At the beginning of our journey, when I ask a client - How are you feeling?; the usual response is - I think good. That tells me how disconnected he is from his emotional body because you cannot think feelings, you can only feel them in your physical body. If you are in touch with your emotions, you will know exactly in which part of the body is the emotion arising, and how exactly is it arising. It may be a tightening of the stomach or heaviness in the shoulders or stiffness in the neck or discomfort in the upper back or stinging in the eyes or a catch in the throat or various other expressions of feelings in the physical body.
As you exercise your emotional body to make it fit, you get reconnected with your authentic self, your Source. At that point, you may feel an expansiveness as vast as the sky above, as deep as the ocean below, spaciousness all around, a sweet homecoming; as the feeling spreads from inside to outside to everywhere. And, your productivity, performance, creativity and innovativeness rises to be at the peak.
One of the the simplest ways to reconnect with your authentic self is to do a random act of kindness and then keep doing them daily like a must-do just as you brush your teeth daily. The idea is to make it an automatic habit. Though in the beginning, it will feel ritualistic and forced, to mandatorily do an act of kindness to tick it off from your list but after a point, it will begin to feel genuine and something you cannot do without. This act is one of the ways you exercise your emotional body.
Just as you have to force yourself to exercise your physical body daily in the beginning but after the lowest point of wanting to give up, you experience an energy that has you wanting to exercise your physical body daily that you can no longer stop. It is interesting that the energy graph of inculcating any growth habit is similar to the shape of a hockey stick. Your mental, emotional and physical energy continue to drop till the lowest point but if you continue beyond that point using your spiritual energy of higher purpose and deep connection with your own self; your mental, emotional and physical energy suddenly turn around exponentially to support you to stick to the habit forever.
Based on experiments conducted by University College London, we now have proof that it takes 66 days to hold on to a habit daily for it to become automatic. So, play the Kindness Habit game daily for 66 days even as your energy dips to reap the benefit of a healthy and fit emotional body.
Of course, there are many other exercises to keep your emotional body fit. Let’s take those up in subsequent articles for discussion.
Coming back to Kindness, how do you define it? It is an act coming from a place of compassionate love and empathy for the good of others with no expectation of a reward in return. If the act is done for appreciation, acknowledgement or some other intrinsic or extrinsic reward, the act serves you no purpose and you stay disconnected from your authentic self.
The next logical question is why do we even care that the emotional body is fit and healthy. It is because the Being of the Human Being that we are is like a car with 4 wheels on a journey to reach its destination of fulfilment of its purpose of having been born. The 4 wheels are our physical, emotional, mental and spiritual bodies. If any of these bodies is weak, then the car is unable to drive forward with velocity towards its purpose and we feel a lack, a longing, an incompletion, something missing, a void in our hearts and souls that no material wealth or a loved one can complete or fill.
Interestingly, if we work on our physical, emotional, mental and spiritual bodies to become intimately connected with our authentic self, we will find ourselves becoming loving, compassionate and empathetic. The reverse is also true, if we work on practising feeling love, compassion and empathy viscerally not just playing around the idea in our head; we will automatically find ourselves becoming intimately connected with our authentic self.
That is the true purpose of our life - to find and reconnect with our authentic self, our inner Wisdom, our inner Light and live in the expression of our undeniable greatness. Not to undertake this journey leads us to an experience of pain from which we find no recourse till the time Pain has forced us to choose the path to our Highest Self. At that point, Pain has served its purpose and we no longer find ourselves in the grip of it. Each experience, painful or not, is a nudge from the Universe to drop our masks of being a Victim or a Fighter and step forward as Peaceful Warriors that we truly are, to fight the battles inside rather than their reflections outside to allow our inner Light to shine through to make our world brighter than we found it.
That is why Kindness matters in Business. Because it gives us access to our authentic self and an opportunity to step into the Light of our inner Wisdom for us to operate at the highest levels of productivity, performance, creativity and innovation. That has definite economic outcome higher than available without highest levels of productivity, performance, creativity and innovation in people engaged in making the business work. There is a direct correlation between Kindness embodied in the culture of a Business and Profitability generated by the Business. Interestingly, you cannot tell or mandate people to be kind.
Leaving you with a question - How do you create a culture of kindness at work and at home?
Your fellow traveller in this Journey towards Purpose, Abundance and Contribution through the work we do, communities that we are a part of and families we are blessed to belong to,
Photo Credit: www.thehansindia.com
A son of a coffee planter to a Billionaire Founder and Owner of India’s biggest coffee chain, Cafe Coffee Day, committed suicide earlier this week. His tragic end is a huge wake-up call for the Global Business Community and has learnings for all of us that we must pause to reflect and ruminate upon. And, hopefully, this helpless act of a powerful business magnate will trigger a transformation in the way we work and who we are as human beings.
1. His death is a reminder that a Business Model is not only made robust, profitable and sustainable by the business elements that define it; but also by the human depth of the founder and the leadership team, displayed by the fitness levels of their physical, emotional, mental and spiritual bodies.
A business model’s effectiveness needs to be measured not only by the outer business elements, but also by the inner human elements of the people engaged in that business.
We mostly get carried away by what is visible - number of outlets, number of employees, turnover, number of cities, national vs global presence etc. - that we miss the foundation on which all of this is standing.
The foundation is the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health of the person at the helm of the business, who is leading from the front. The business really ends up being a mirror of who she or he really is, what his / her personal, leadership and business habits are.
2. In the light of the above point, it is important that the leadership team at the helm including the CEO / Founder / Business Owner have a mentoring / coaching structure so that they are building themselves to be the world’s best physical, emotional, mental and spiritual athletes; without which a great business cannot be built.
3. The reason that the leaders don’t create a support structure for themselves is because as a society we tend to idolise those who have created ‘success’. So, the idols fail to realise that they too need to continuously learn, grow and evolve with the support of others.
Sooner, as a society, we realise, encourage and walk towards a relationship of equals between all, irrespective of all labels; the sooner will we all experience freedom to be and less pressure for all to put up a brave face to hide a sad reality within.
4. Don’t replace ‘building a sustainable business’ with ‘raising money’. Let the money in the business ecosystem be because the customers are crazy about your product / service, not your investors.
5. Just as highest levels of fitness across the 4 bodies of the Being of the Founder / CEO is the real foundation of the business model, so is Integrity. Without integrity, the business will fall sooner or later. Sooner is better because then there is less damage. Though unfortunately, mostly it is later where both direct and collateral damage is massive.
6. Create, own and enjoy wealth but don’t be owned by it. At the end of it all, you can take none of it with you. If you can’t take it with you, then all you really are is the custodian of all the wealth that you create.
So, why be perturbed when you have less of it or somebody takes it away from you or become jubilant when you have more of it. It is this emotional instability that causes so much of the stress and heartburn we have.
Yes, it is a lot of hard work to reach that balance. Yet, the struggle to reach there is totally worth it allowing you to experience ‘happiness without a cause or reason’, which is when happiness can truly be yours.
7. We are part of an energy system and every action we take has an impact. We cannot act as if what we do only has an impact on us. Imagine what Siddhartha’s 2 sons, one in college and the other as yet in school) and his wife must be going through.
Of course, the net worth of Cafe Coffee Day fell. Probably worse than the fall of the net worth, which is easier to re-build, is the widespread discouragement and disillusionment experienced by his employees and aspiring entrepreneurs.
8. You don’t need fancy foreign degrees to build big business. A local school and college is just as good. All that matters is the size of your dream.
9. One really doesn’t know what anyone around us is really going through on the inside. Choosing to act and speak from a place of loving kindness is probably the biggest difference we can make to people in our lives, known and unknown.
10. Being a Fighter is exhausting. What would serve us is embracing the way of the Peaceful Warrior, who knows that the real battles are really on the inside and, therefore, all battles on the outside are merely reflections of the chaos inside.
You can’t kill the reflections by shooting them. Shooting the attachment and being ok with owning nothing after building an empire ground up may be a lesson one is meant to learn and having learnt that, it is likely that no pressure on the outside can cause the balance to disrupt on the inside.
That is what stress really is - disruption of the inner emotional balance.
11. What has spirituality got to do with all of this? Everything because a spiritual perspective gives us a higher meaning and purpose to all that we do from moment to moment. It strengthens in us childlike trust and faith, giving us the ability to see the gift in all challenges along the journey of life and to receive them gratefully.
Loved the story of a doctor that I read in Mother Teresa’s Biography sometime back. His pregnant wife and unborn child were battling death. On being asked what he was praying for; he replied he was praying for the strength and faith to accept God’s will, whatever that maybe. This spiritual perspective is the only way to access emotional balance, which is necessary to create anything masterful, genius-level and extraordinary on a sustainable basis.
Siddhartha’s soul will rest in peace if we can learn and live the above lessons from his life and death because then, how he lived and how he died would not be in vain.
The first stage of stepping into authentic leadership is building your Agility of Mind leadership muscle. As I work with leaders to step into discovering what is authentic leadership and making that a way of life to lead their lives, professionally and personally, from good to great; I find that from good to great is a 5-stage journey. Each stage is about elevating one’s consciousness by developing a specific leadership muscle. Each subsequent muscle requires the preceding muscles to be at the highest level of fitness.
Here are the 5 muscles in the order in which they need to be strengthened. Actually, the right word really is ‘can’ be strengthened and not ‘need’ because human consciousness can only be elevated in that order as below:
Gear 0 - Good Life. Good Business. A vague sense of emptiness; and disconnect with oneself and others. Living life as a Victim or a Fighter. Stress and not being at the highest level of fitness is an accepted part of life.
Evolve to Gear 1 by strengthening A. Agility of Mind™ leadership muscle
Evolve to Gear 2 by strengthening B. Being of Service™ leadership muscle
Evolve to Gear 3 by strengthening C. Communicating in the world of others™ leadership muscle
Evolve to Gear 4 by strengthening D. Delivery on your word™ leadership muscle
Evolve to Gear 5 by strengthening E. Excellence™ leadership muscle. Great Life. Deeply Fulfilling Successful Profitable Business. Loving Harmonious Relationships at Work and at Home. Happy Responsible Kids with their Genius Joyfully Expressed. Nourishing Nurturing Me-time. Highest level of physical, emotional, mental and spiritual fitness. Making a Difference. Creating an Impact. Making a Dent in the Universe. Peaceful Warrior.
The above is the journey from being a Victim or a Fighter, both limiting ways of Being, to being a Peaceful Warrior, a Gear 5 Leader.
The way to evolve is to work at the level of habits across the 4 bodies of our Being - physical, emotional, intellectual / mental, spiritual. Bit by bit working at the level of habits across the 4 bodies of our Being, we grow from inside out, get connected to our own authentic self experiencing coming home to ourself. Our consciousness evolves when we go beyond understanding a concept intellectually to experiencing it viscerally and living from there.
Before moving forward, let me explain what is a Distinction. Imagine an Object inside a ball. How many points are there on the ball to view at the Object? Numerous, isn’t it? At each point on the ball to view the Object from, won’t the Object look different. At two points on the ball, the views will even be contradictory. Then, which view is the Truth? What if I tell you that the Object inside the ball is Reality. View from which Point, alternatively which Point of View of that Reality is the Truth?
The point that you choose you stand at determines what you see. What you see determines your actions and therefore your outcome.
How do you decide which point to stand at?
The point from where you can access your inner power (Power to Create™) to fulfil your highest intentions and realise your greatest dreams is the point to stand at to view the Object called Reality. That Point of View is called a Distinction. My job as a coach is for you to discover the Distinctions on your own as your own Truths so that you become them instead of you learning them by heart because I tell them to you. Though I will still tell you the Distinctions so that you know what you are looking for. You know you have discovered a Distinction when you get an INSIGHT (sight turned inwards instead of outwards), an AHA or a Eureka moment when you discover something about yourself that you hadn’t known before and that gives you the missing key to unlock part of your inner power. The discovery may be as quiet as a ‘Hmmm’ and silence afterwards. Coaching is a skill for you to access insights, uncover Blind Spots and discover Distinctions to live from a place of power.
A leadership muscle is a state of consciousness defined by a level of physical, emotional, intellectual / mental and spiritual fitness achieved through letting go of limiting habits and taking on growth habits across the 4 bodies of our Being. By consistently working on habits on a daily basis, Distinctions associated with that leadership muscle begin to become a way of life.
Today, lets discuss what is Agility of Mind™ and its relationship to Leadership Development. This is the first stage of leadership development. Your Agility of Mind™ leadership muscle is fully developed if you can live moment by moment the below 5 Distinctions, or 5 Distinct Ways of perceiving reality:
a. I am responsible for all that happens in my space.
b. Being able to experience one’s own self as whole, complete and perfect with nothing to fix or change. Living in the authentic experience of - I am extraordinary and I love myself. Being able to make the choice to be happy and fulfilled, irrespective of situations and people.
c. Being able to see 360 degree view of any reality. Being able to stand in a place where you can see that your deepest beliefs are really your points of view; and that contradictory beliefs are just as valid. To live in the joyous experience of - Your point of view is just as valid as my point of view.
d. Being able to recognise your own upsets and have the agility of mind to drop them by recognising that the source of your upsets is not out there but in here, that you are not upset because of how people are and how they are not or because of adverse circumstances. You get upset because your expectation didn’t get fulfilled, what you want to communicate you could not, your intention didn’t get realised. When you can understand that your expectations, communications, intentions belong to you, not to others; then you can laugh loudly when Upset tries to take you in its grip.
Being able to recognise your Small Mind™ hiding behind every upset and strengthening your Agility of Mind™ to shift it to your Big Mind™.
e. Recognising all your complaints as your Small Mind™ in disguise and being able to use your Agility of Mind™ to see positive aspects instead of giving in to complaining.
There are 3 levels of competencies in strengthening your leadership muscles. Before we start our journey of inner leadership development, we are unconsciously incompetent.
a. Starter: This is when we live from the Distinctions of the Leadership Muscle or Gear of Evolution only 20% of the time. The reason you progress is that 80% of the time when you are not living the Distinctions, you are aware that you have fallen off your path and get back every time. You fall off and yet you make the choice to come back to the path. This level of competency is also called Conscious Incompetence.
b. Champion: At this level of expertise, you are living from the Distinctions of the Leadership Muscle or Gear of Evolution 80% of the time. The 20% of the time you fall off, you make the choice to come back to the path of living from the Distinctions. This level of competency is also called Conscious Competence.
c. Mastery - At this level, you are living from the Distinctions of the Leadership Muscle or Gear of Evolution 100% of the time, without even being in conscious awareness of it. You become the Distinctions. This level of competency is also called Unconscious Competence.
Inner Leadership Development can only happen at the level of habits across the 4 bodies of our Being. Let's explore few daily habits that will support us to strengthen Agility of Mind™ leadership muscle to elevate our consciousness to Gear 1 of Evolution:
i. Exercising - Yoga, Martial Arts, Functional Training
iv. Acknowledgements - Viscerally experiencing your wins
v. Gratitudes - Viscerally experiencing your blessings
vi. Buddy Conversation - Experiencing being listened to by a committed listener
vii. Reading Books if you don’t read books and stopping to read for some time, if you are an avid reader.
viii. Identifying what you resist, fear, hate to do, get embarrassed doing, don’t want to do, makes you uneasy and uncomfortable; and then doing exactly that.
The journey to your highest self, to the highest expression of your inner genius is a journey which is both deeply fulfilling and joyous. Wishing you the strength to choose that path.
May you choose this gift of Life. That is my intention for you. That is my prayer for you.
Further Recommended Reading:
1. How to use Gratitude as a Leadership Tool for Business Growth?
2. How Reverence for all of Life Supports you to Lead your Business from Good to Great?
3. Without Integrity, nothing works; not even your business. Why, and What to do about it?
4. Why Must You Deepen Yourself in Mastery Consciousness to Lead your Business to Market Leadership?
Met an ex-colleague after 10 years. He looked younger than he had then. He retired few years ago after contributing massively to one of the largest multinational IT companies. Originally from India, now an Australian citizen, living for most times in Singapore, he keeps coming back to India. Though, he is on multiple boards, is a serial entrepreneur successfully and profitably running several businesses of his own, is a mentor to numerous start-ups; he is most passionate about a give-back project he is doing in Udaipur (his place of birth, his home town) of bringing world-class technology education to a local college.
I love having joyous, real, authentic conversations - as much with the drivers of the electric rickshaws, drivers of Ubers / Olas as with my client community from around the world, with the people from the various communities that I have the privilege to be a part of, with anyone with whom I have the fortune to share a bit of a journey this lifetime, whichever the context. And, from all these conversations, I uncovered a secret that I will share with you today. You will find it hidden in the brief story I told you about my ex-colleague above.
Our degree of happiness is a function of how deeply we are connected to our roots, how much contribution we have made to the communities that we come from. We are tribal at heart and our tribes define us. It is only in coming home to our own village that we can find our way back to who we are as human beings.
No tribe is better than the other, just that my tribe gives me a sense of belonging that no other tribe can; just as it is for you. I can only have deep respect for all tribes if I can reconnect to the deep respect within me for my own tribe. I can contribute to other tribes powerfully when I have contributed to my own first. Just like, only in finding a deep connection with my mom and dad can I find the deep connection with my own self; and then only can I uncover a deep connection with all beings in the world.
The reason the programs I run create massive outcomes for my clients is because apart from coaching them to create business success; among other things, I also work with them on their relationship with their parents if I smell a disconnect. There always is a little bit of disconnect, that is part of our coming into adulthood. Unfortunately, this disconnect is part of our human design.
Even as a coach with all my deep understanding of human behaviour, psychology and the rest of it; I will still end up creating disconnect in my kids’ hearts. Though the story should not end there. The story must continue with me working on myself and creating an environment for the kids to work on themselves to remove the disconnect. It is important to remove the disconnect because it comes in the way of our experiencing ourself and other people in our lives as whole, complete and perfect; which is the source of troubled relationships at work and at home. This is also a hidden source of stress which messes up our health, well-being, productivity, performance, creativity, innovation and impact.
It doesn’t matter whether our parents are with us or have transitioned to another realm, it is always possible to reconnect powerfully with them with love, gratitude and reverence; not from a sense of obligation but from a deep visceral sense of joyous embrace of the source from where we sprang forth.
A deep connection is only the first step to come home to ourselves. The next step is to contribute to our mom and dad. In doing that, we will find the energy and strength to contribute to our own self by nourishing and nurturing our physical, intellectual, emotional and spiritual bodies. That will get us reconnected to the primal need to contribute to our tribe, the communities that we are a part of, our country’s consciousness that flows through our blood. In that contribution will we experience being whole and stand tall to let our inner Sun shine brightly to light up the world. In our doing so, our children will learn to do the same, the people who are entrusted to our care at work will learn to do the same. From there will spring forth unimaginable levels of health and fitness, performance, productivity, creativity, innovation and the massive impact that we are meant to make through our lifetime.
I highly recommend to all coaches, leaders and parents to understand this part of the jigsaw puzzle called leadership development. Before moving forward, let me tell you that another phrase for leadership development is “elevating human consciousness”; in people entrusted to our care at home and at work, by elevating our own first.
And, yet, beyond physical tribes, we belong to intellectual, emotional and spiritual tribes that may as well be globally dispersed. We can only find higher connection by laddering up from physical (our roots), intellectual, emotional to finally, spiritual tribes.
We are meant to belong to each other, though first we must belong to our own self. When we evolve to experiencing ourselves as whole, complete and perfect, we will find every relationship whole, complete and perfect. The problem is we are seeking relationships, external success, wealth, fame, creative hobbies, sports and everything on the outside to make us experience wholeness, completeness and perfection on the inside. That’s what we are really seeking.
The only way to get there is not by trying to create something outside of ourselves, it is by going within to do the deep inner work to evolve from the stressful forceful ’survival consciousness’ to the restful, joyous, soothing, tranquil, equanimous, lyrical, poetical, melodious, gently flowing ’abundance consciousness’. That transformation within shifts you from good to great, professionally and personally.
May you choose this gift of transformation. That is my intention for you. That is my prayer for you.
Have you ever experienced that you have so many ideas to solve a problem and yet when you give them all to your people, nothing happens. Nothing gets implemented. The problem remains just as unsolved as before, even growing bigger. You end up being frustrated and irritated because you did tell the solution and you know that your solution will fix the problem in its bud and create amazing results. But, the people to whom you give your ideas to continue to resist you and resist doing what you tell them to do.
And, then, you begin to face the same problem with your kids. They have so many more opportunities than you had. And, yet, they are floundering these opportunities and the resources that you are working hard to provide to them. Leave alone being grateful, they don’t even listen to you. You know exactly what they need to do. If they did exactly that, their lives will begin to shine. And, yet, they continue to resist you, resist doing what you tell them to do.
What’s happening here?
So far, while you were an Individual Contributor at the workplace or your kids were not pre-teens as yet, your brilliant ideas supported you to create success because you were implementing them. Now, that your role has changed. Instead of an Individual Contributor, you are a Leader at work and at home. Your success is a function of other people (your team or your kids) implementing your ideas, your old model of Being will not only not support you to create the success that you dream of, it actually will hinder you from moving forward as you will come face to face with a wall of resistance from those who you are privileged to lead, both at work and at home.
You may use the brute force of your charisma, the power of your personality and conviction to get people to follow your lead but that’ll take you only that far. You may end up leading your organization to climb the tree but flying to the moon will escape you.
If you are committed to creating impact, making a massive difference, making a dent in the Universe by leading your business from good to great, have loving harmonious relationships at work and at home, raise happy responsible kids with their genius joyfully expressed, nourish and nurture yourself to connect with your highest self; then listen.
Yes, LISTEN and not tell. Yes, LISTEN and not TELL. Don’t tell them what to do. I know your ideas will make them fly so high, but they cannot fly with your ideas. Just as a baby bird can only fly with her own wings. They can only fly with ideas that are their own. They can’t see with your Light. They can only see and walk with their own inner Light. Giving them all the knowledge and information to convince them to do what you are telling them to do is making zero difference to them because they are not listening. They are not listening because they haven’t become leaders as yet and don’t know how to listen. The constant chatter in their head about the limiting view of themselves, of you and of life itself are 3 big walls that does not allow anything to enter.
You are privileged to be a Leader. It is your privilege to grow beyond the default design of a human being, become aware of your own chatter in your head and STILL it, so that you can LISTEN. It is your privilege to drop your 3 walls so that you create a space for them to drop their 3 walls. Then you can really step into their world and communicate in their world so that they really understand what you are saying.
Till that time, you will say, they will resist because they haven’t as yet learnt to LISTEN. It’s your privilege to grow your inner leadership, to increase your leadership depth to listen, understand and lead your people at work and kids at home to their own ideas, to their own solutions so that they can implement them. Your job as a leader is no longer to be a star performer, it is to create a space for star performers to grow to their highest potential.
Next time, someone comes to you with a problem, create a space of listening by asking questions. Not questions to make them wrong but genuine questions, sourced in deep love and care for who they are as human beings. As you ask questions which uplift and expand them, their inner wisdom will trigger and yes, they will come up with solutions that are much better than yours. That is our privilege as leaders and as parents, to raise our people and our kids to become better than us by letting them find their own answers and solutions rather than creating fixed structures for them to follow based on our own knowledge and information.
As leaders and parents, it is our privilege to do 10 times of what we ask our people and our kids to do.
As leaders, it our privilege to unconditionally give our love, acceptance and care to our people as we would give to our kids because just as we are custodians of our children, we are custodians of our people. They have been placed in our care and it is our privilege to provide them a space of loving kindness, total acceptance and gentle caring for them to throw the lampshade off their inner Light to fearlessly shine brightly.
As leaders and parents, it is our privilege to coach our people and children to fulfil their highest intentions and realise their greatest dreams; not by telling them what to do but by leading them with questions and guiding them to uncover their inner wisdom to find their own answers, their own solutions.
To be such a leader, it is our privilege to be on an inner journey to come home to who we authentically are.
Wishing you the self-awareness, courage and strength to be on such a journey.
Further Recommended Reading:
1. How to use Gratitude as a Leadership Tool for Business Growth?
2. How Reverence for all of Life Supports you to Lead your Business from Good to Great?
3. Without Integrity, nothing works; not even your business. Why, and What to do about it?
4. Why Must You Deepen Yourself in Mastery Consciousness to Lead your Business to Market Leadership?
I went to watch the final day of the top golfing event of the country yesterday - Hero Indian Open. I followed the leader of the first 3 days. After a dissatisfactory tee-off at one of the holes in the back 9 of the golf course, he beat the ground with his club. At that moment, I had an inner knowing that he will not win the tournament. After almost being an easy winner based on first 3 days performance, he ended up 4th earning only USD 80,850 instead of USD 291,660.
My 10-year old son was volunteering at the event and had the fortune to be with the 3-ball that the tournament winner was a part of on one of the 4 days of the event. I asked him to describe his experience and he described the tournament champion as having so much humility, being kind and cool even after a particularly bad shot.
I heard other stories of other players cursing or throwing their club down or at the caddy, when a shot didn’t go their way.
I have seen this as much in Business, as in Sports and in all other areas. Your craft mastery only takes you forward that much. Beyond a point, how much of an expert you are no longer counts. Of course, it is what gives you entry to the top league in the first place but to be the leader of the top league and to stay there; you need something more.
After you have worked your way up the pyramid, everyone is now working just as hard with almost similar resources. Let’s call Craft Mastery (being a master of your domain, a super expert) the first lever in the game of Life. You have to put in the 10,000 hours of purposeful, persistent, deliberate practise (made famous by Ericsson) for you to reach at the top of your industry.
Once you are top 100 of your field, what then gives you the leverage to be number 1? It is no longer Craft Mastery. What got you to Top 100 or Top 1000 league will no longer take you forward.
What, then, is the second lever? Compare the 2 players above, the one who could have been number 1 and the one who did become number 1. Notice the difference between the two players’ response to an adverse situation and their way of Being. Observe the stupendous difference between their earnings. That is what the second lever does - push you to Top 10. I call the 2nd Lever - Leadership Depth which is who you really are on the inside. Humility, kindness, still calmness in the face of chaos are all characteristics of people who have worked hard at growing on the inside. Their success and prosperity on the outside becomes a mere reflection of the shine inside.
You can beat the ground, people around you, yourself but all that will not get you to win the tournament of life.
Lets say, you made it to Top 10. The 2nd Lever will no longer take you forward. You need a 3rd Lever. What could that be? For fans of Bollywood and Indian History, what made 21 soldiers fight a heroic battle at Saragarhi against 10,000 to 12,000 Afghans? What made the Indian Women underdog hockey team win in Chak De, one of my favourite Hindi movies?
Let's take an example from Business. Under JRD Tata’s leadership, the assets of his business assets grew from Rs 62 crore in 1939 to more than Rs 10,000 crore in 1990. He is a founder of many landmark Indian businesses - Tata Consultancy Services, Tata Motors, Titan Industries, Tata Salt, Voltas and Air India - contributing significantly to the economic prosperity of our country.
What is common between the 21 Sikh soldiers of Saragarhi, the Chak De team and JRD Tata that had them be so successful in their own domains?
Each one of them were not playing their game for personal wins, they were instead standing up for a cause so much bigger than who they were.
There are JRD Tata’s words - If I were to attribute any single reason to such success as I have achieved, I would say that success would not have been possible without a sustained belief that what I did or attempted to do would serve the needs and interests of our country and our people and that I was a trustee of such interests.
The Chak De Team weren’t playing for themselves. They weren’t playing to earn money. They were playing for the freedom of the spirit of womanhood, which they experienced being denied to them. They were playing for their country, for the sense of belongingness to their country beyond the region, state or religion they belonged to. The Saragarhi bravehearts were fighting for the honour of their community, for the honour of their country.
That is the 3rd Lever. I call that lever Business Excellence or Sports Excellence, depending on the domain. As long as you are running your business or playing professional sports to earn money for yourself and your family, so much of your inner power is denied to you. When you can evolve to be a stand for a cause, have your work be a way for you to live your purpose to make a difference in the world; you have unlocked the 3rd lever.
Wishing you 'all the 3 unlockings' to experience deep joyous fulfilment and abundance at levels unimaginable before.
Infact, the real question is - How to stay inspired to continue building your Business with passion and joyous energy inspite of the ups and downs in Life? There is no escaping from the trials and tribulations that Life invariably throws up to test one’s commitment to realise one’s impossible, unimaginable dreams.
How does one then continue walking the path with unbridled and unstoppable energy? All of us have the seed of genius in us. Only those of us are able to nurture it to fully blossom, who keep walking on the path towards our highest self; irrespective of chaos inside or outside.
Chaos is the Universe’ way of supporting our growth. Therefore, expect chaos, confusion, self-doubt to be your constant companions as you build your business. If that be the case, then it would be more effective to befriend chaos, confusion, self-doubt and their various other avatars than to resist or struggle against them. Imagine pushing a wall with all your might. Can you feel the wall pushing you back? Can you see you are still standing where you were before? You see, half your mind is struggling against the wall, resisting the wall and you are only left with half your mind’s capacity to creatively figure out a solution to go to the other side of the wall.
What if instead of pushing the wall, struggling against it. resisting it; you simply stood still and accepted it the way it is and the way it is not. You may get a brilliant idea to take support from the wall by resting your back against it. In that moment of mental and physical restfulness with your mind’s energy fully available to you since half of it is not struggling against what is, how likely would it be for stroke of creativity to unfold a solution for you to gracefully and effortlessly walk to the other side of the wall.
Therefore, in the moments of chaos, confusion, self-doubt, criticism, illness, lack of support from those who really matter, loss of energy, scarcity, financial ruin or any other limiting experience; drop your armour and embrace what is. Fully own it and accept it. Receive it with gratitude as a gift from the Universe to support you to be bigger than who you are at this moment so that you can create much bigger outcomes than you have ever created. I call this leadership ability - Childlike Trust and Faith. Childlike trust and faith in the Universe, childlike trust and faith in the process of Life, childlike trust and faith in Life as it unfolds.
It requires leadership depth to live in the experience of this childlike trust and faith. Without this ability, nothing of life may make sense; sucking away energy from the onward march on the path that we feel most connected to. Once we stop struggling in the ocean of Life, we realize we already know how to float and that more we struggle to not drown, greater our chances of drowning. Its when we trust the Universe (which includes all of Life, all Beings and ourselves) and become still, we will find ourselves floating.
Why is it a leadership ability? What has childlike trust and faith got to do with Leadership or Business? Everything because the mind is then fully available to finding creative solutions. There is unleashing of undiscovered creativity, locked-in productivity and high level of performance. All of this put together creates effortless customer creation, operational excellence and extraordinary service delighting customers; resulting in greater profitability in a Business ecosystem.
The next question is how to build this childlike trust and faith in ourselves and our team members. Leadership development is inner work, requires growth on the inside instead of something that can be hammered in from the outside. Therefore, you cannot train people to become leaders. You can only coach them to be on the inner journey of personal transformation to grow in leadership depth. And, that journey begins 2 stages before:
Stage 1 of Leadership - Gear 1 - Coaching your people to discover what their fears are, what they resist the most and supporting them to step outside their comfort zone to fully experience themselves as whole, complete and perfect.
Stage 2 of Leadership - Gear 2 - Coaching your people to relate to others as whole, complete and perfect. Coaching them to viscerally experience what it means to be grateful and stay immersed in that experience.
Stage 3 of Leadership - Gear 3 - Coaching your people to step up from Gratitude to Childlike Trust and Faith in the Universe, in Grace, in Life or any other word you want to use.
All these shifts require shifts across all the 4 bodies of the Being - physical, mental, emotional and spiritual; dropping of limiting habits and taking on Growth Habits at each of the 4 bodies.
Before you can coach others, you have to model it yourself. That is why coaching is effective because it is not about Telling, it is about Being.
The above journey is a strategic long-term growth path to be the kind of person who remains motivated through the ups and downs of building a business, through the inevitable vicissitudes of Life.
More tactically, here’s what you can do to deepen yourself in the Leadership ability of Childlike Trust and Faith:
1. Be a part of a mastermind group of positive people on their journey to their inner genius. We become who we most spend our time with.
2. Build a structure for yourself to be continually growing, to be continuously on the Leadership path to your highest self - from Gear 1 to 2 to 3 and onwards. Having your own coach is a critical component of this structure.
3. This should have been the first, actually because the above 2 make sense only if you have this - a purpose, a dream, a personal inner commitment to be so much bigger than who you are right now to create so much more than you are creating right now.
4. The ritual of daily prayer, which I am finding slowly eroding, is a powerful way to immerse yourself in childlike trust and faith. The process of a heartfelt prayer allows us to unmask to commune authentically with our own self through the Universe. A prayer is not when you beg the creator for something, it is when you seek nothing and open yourself to the Grace of God. The true meaning of prayer became alive for me when I read about a doctor whose wife was delivering a baby with both the mother and baby at high risk. He didn’t pray for the well-being of his loved ones. Instead, he prayed to God to give him strength to accept with Grace whatever He decided as the outcome.
5. Praying before eating is another ritual that is powerful in shifting the Being. The act of praying before eating helps us to become more mindful, connects us to our inner self which not only increases the nutritional value of what we are eating but also helps to still our mind and empty us of limiting emotions and thoughts, if the prayer is heartfully offered; resulting in better decision making ability, greater creativity in problem solving and better communication. This way, every meal is an opportunity to get in touch with our Source of productivity, performance, creativity and innovation.
Here’s a variation that I did on St Francis of Assisi’s prayer that powerfully reminds me every meal of what my personal inner commitment is, what my values are, what my promise is to be, the place I want to come back to every time I fall off my path. I end the prayer with Gayatri mantra, which is a prayer in Sanskrit for strength to transform the mind from darkness to light. Create your own version of the mealtime prayer and include your whole family in the process to support your children to start their leadership journey to their highest self as early as possible.
Grace, make me an instrument of thy peace.
Where there is hatred, let me be love.
Where there is injury, let me be forgiveness.
Where there is doubt, let me be childlike trust and faith.
Where there is despair, let me be optimism.
Where there is darkness, let me be light.
Where there is sadness, let me be joy.
Where there is negativity, let me be soothing joyful positivity.
Where there is chaos, let me be peaceful order.
Where there is confusion, let me be clarity.
Where there is struggle, let me be joyful effortless creation.
Where there is lack, scarcity, yearning; let me be abundance and prosperity.
Where there is lethargy, boredom, inaction; let me be enthusiasm, passion and powerful, effective action.
Where there is judgement, let me be deep understanding and reverence for all points of view.
Where there is anger and hurt, let me be loving tenderness.
Where there is arrogance, let be me grateful humility.
Where there is treachery and betrayal; let me be childlike trust & faith, integrity, unconditional love & acceptance.
Where there is bitterness and resentment; let me be forgiveness, gratitude and joy.
Where there is indifference, let me be love.
Where there is fear, let me be loving embrace of all of my fears and joyous effective action.
Where there is humiliation and rejection; let me be love and grace.
Oh, Divine Grace, grant that I seek to console than to be consoled.
I seek to understand that to be understood.
I seek to love than to be loved.
For, it is in giving that we receive.
It is in forgiving that we are forgiven.
It is in dying to self that we are born to eternal life.
is a sanskrit prayer to transform one’s default small limiting mind sourced in fear and darkness to our Big Mind sourced in Love and Light.
ओम भूर्भुवः॒ स्वः ।
भर्गो॑ दे॒वस्य॑ धीमहि ।
धियो॒ यो नः॑ प्रचो॒दया॑त् ॥
om bhūr bhuvaḥ svaḥ
tát savitúr váreṇ(i)yaṃ
bhárgo devásya dhīmahi
dhíyo yó naḥ prachodáyāt
Wishing that you break free from your inner and outer shackles to come home to yourself to create success, fulfilment and joy on the inside and the outside.
Here’s how you build Great Teams with the Right Talent:
1. Have a cause so powerful that it brings tears to your eyes because your passion for what you stand for and how you live that through your business is the glue that holds a Great Team together. It’s been proven time and again, it is not the money that draws people to an organization and makes them stay.
2. Know what your team member’s dreams are and make them your own that supporting them to realize their greatest dreams becomes more important to you than your own dreams. Be your team member’s coach, not their boss.
3. Have a relationship of equals with each of your team member that you are comfortable with them holding the mirror to you, creating the space for you to be their Leader not by authority or external power but by your inner power to inspire them to choose you as their Leader with their mind, heart and soul.
4. Choose to hire those as your team members who love learning and are passionate about their domain over those who are from top-notch colleges.
5. Check during the interview if they do household chores. If they do, you have found a valuable team member who understands what responsibility is, owns it fully and is not afraid to roll-up their sleeves to do what has to be done.
6. Assess before deciding to hire what their values are. Hire only if there’s a match between your values and theirs. Teams usually are ineffective and unproductive more often because of values mismatch than for any other reason. Therefore, ask yourself what are your values before stepping out to build a team
7. Know what your cause is, making what dent in the Universe would touch, move and inspire you. Hire those who are touched, moved and inspired by your cause. That is the super glue that holds the team together.
8. Bring those people in as your team members who want to join you not because they can earn a salary but because what you and your business are upto creating in the world inspires them and gives them an opportunity to make a difference.
9. Right Talent are people who are committed to be the best in their domain and yet have an endearing humility of a beginner.
10. Great Teams are formed around great leaders. Ask yourself the question - "How can I become an even better leader than I am today to inspire the formation of Great Teams with the Right Talent?"
Wishing you a joyous and a deeply fulfilling ride as you build a great team with the right talent to lead your business from good to great.
Want to build a massive business empire, create great amount of wealth, be wildly successful? Live the laws explained in this book - The Go-Giver by Bob Burg and John David Mann. It is truly a little story about a powerful business idea, just as the tagline says.
Bob Burg is a former top sales professional, now a highly sought-after conference speaker world-wide and an author. He was named by the American Management Association as one of the Top 30 Most Influential Thought Leaders in Business for 2014.
John David Mann is a successful entrepreneur and award-winning co-author. His ‘Take the Lead’ (with Betsy Myers) was named by Tom Peters and the Washington Post as Best Leadership Book of 2011.
Wealth creation is the outcome of being a giving person, according to the authors, inspired from their own business experience. The book weaves a beautiful, unputdownable story to elucidate what they call “The 5 Laws of Stratospheric Success”. My own experience bears out the truth of these laws.
If you are looking to transform your organization's culture to create the foundation for exponential growth and success, gift this book to every employee.
Here are few excerpts from the book to inspire you to read the book end-to-end. It is a few hours read, not only because the book is 122 pages short but also because it is written in a very engaging style. Read it and it may as well become the turning point in your life.
1. … be a giving person, period: one who gives thought, gives attention, gives care, gives focus, gives time and energy - gives value to others. Not as a quid pro quo, not as a strategy to get ahead, but because it is, in and of itself, a satisfying and fulfilling way to be. - Arianna Huffington
2. … the more successful <people> are, the more willing they are to share their secrets with others.
… The interesting thing is, the bigger they are, the nicer they are.
… I believe that a person can reach a certain level of success without being particularly special. But to get really, really big, to reach the kind of stratospheric success we are talking about, people need to have something on the inside, something that’s genuine.
3. … the majority of people operate with a mindset that says to the fireplace, “First give me some heat, then I’ll throw in some logs.” Or that says to the bank, “Give me interest on my money, then I’ll make a deposit.” And, of course, it just doesn’t work that way.
4. Most of us have grown up seeing the world as a place of limitation rather than as a place of inexhaustible treasures. A world of competition rather than one of co-creation.
5. In life, you often don’t get what you want. But, here’s what you do get - You get what you expect.
6. Go looking for the best in people, and you’ll be amazed at how much talent, ingenuity, empathy and goodwill you’ll find.
7. Ultimately, the world treats you more or less the way you expect to be treated. … you’d be amazed how much you have to do with what happens to you.
8. A very useful thing to remember: appearances can be deceiving. … Truth is, they nearly always are.
9. … the Golden Rule of Business - All things being equal, people will do business with and refer business to those people they know, like and trust.
10. … the point isn’t to have <your customers> pay you more, it’s to give them more. You give, give, give. Why? Because you love to. It’s not a strategy, it’s a way of life. And when you do, then very, very profitable things begin to happen.
… but I thought you said you are not thinking about the results.
That’s right, you are not. But that doesn’t mean they won’t happen.
11. All the great fortunes in the world have been created by men and women who had a greater passion for what they were giving - their product, service or idea - than for what they were getting.
And many of those great fortunes have been squandered by others who had a greater passion for what they were getting than what they were giving.
12. It means that you get to determine your level of compensation - it’s under your control. If you want more success, find a way to serve more people. It’s that simple.
… It also means there are no limitations on what you can earn because you can always find more people to serve.
The Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr, once said, ‘Everybody can be great because anybody can serve.’
Another way to say that might be, ‘Everybody can be successful because anybody can give.’
13. “There are people who get rich, and there are people who do good. My belief system said you are one or the other, you can’t be both.”
… “And I saw that my old belief system was only getting in the way. It wasn’t serving. So I decided to change it.”
“Have you ever made up a story? … Life works the same way. You just make it up. Being broke and being rich are both decisions. You make them up, right up here.” She tapped her finger to her temple. “Everything else is just how it plays out.”
What you focus on is what you get.
14. There are three universal reasons for working. Survive - to meet your basic living needs. Save - to go beyond your basic needs and expand your life. And serve - to make a contribution to the world around you. … Unfortunately, most people spend their entire lives focussing on the first. A smaller number focus on the second. But those rare few who are truly successful - not just financially, but genuinely successful in all aspects of their lives - keep their focus squarely on the third.
15. Changing my focus from seeing what I could get to what I could give was when my career started to take off.
16. … by a network I don’t necessarily mean your customers or clients. I mean a network of people who know you, like you and trust you. They might never buy a thing from you, but they’ve always got you in the backs of their minds. … They are people who are personally invested in seeing you succeed, you see? And, of course, that’s because you are the same way about them. They are your army of personal walking ambassadors.
… You want to know what makes that kind of network happen? Stop keeping score. … most of the time, what people call ‘win-win’ is really just a disguised way of keeping track. Making sure we all come out even, that nobody gets the advantage. … When you base your relationships - in business or anywhere else in your life - on who owes who what, that’s not being a friend. That’s being a creditor.
… Make your win about the other person … Forget win-win - focus on the other person’s win.
… if you place the other person’s interests first, your interests will always be taken care of. Always. Some people call it enlightened self-interest. Watch out for what other people need, with the faith that when you do, you’ll get what you need.
17. Money. Position. … a history of outstanding accomplishments. …. These things don’t create influence. - influence creates them. … Putting other people’s interests first <creates influence>.
18. Have you ever wondered what makes people attractive? I mean, genuinely attractive? Magnetic? … They love to give. That’s why they are attractive. Givers attract.
19. I believe there is one reason, and only one reason. that we have stayed together so long and are as happy together today as we were forty-eight years ago - more so, in fact. That reason is this: I care more about my wife’s happiness than I do about my own. All I’ve ever wanted to do since the day I met her is to make her happy. And here’s the truly remarkable thing - she seems to want the same thing for me.
20. “Besides, ladies.” She tapped her index finger a few times in her temple. “It’s what’s inside that makes you beautiful, not the wrapping.”
… My husband gave me the most surprising gift of all. He gave me the wake-up call of a lifetime - when he walked out of the door and never came back. … It took me one full year to unwrap, open, understand and use that gift.
… When I said that my life as a mom, wife and household manager left me with nothing the marketplace wanted, I was wrong. There was something else I’d learned over those years, and that was how to be a friend. How to care. How to make people feel good about themselves. And that, my friends, is something the marketplace wants very much - always has, always will.
... What I am here to sell you on is you.
People, remember this: no matter what your training, no matter what your skills, no matter what area you are in, you are your most important commodity. The most valuable gift you have to offer is you.
Reaching any goal you set takes 10% specific knowledge or technical skills - 10%, max. The other 90 plus percent is people skills.
And what’s the foundation of all people skills? Liking people? Caring about people? Being a good listener? Those are all helpful, but they are not the core of it. The core of it is who you are. It starts with you.
As long as you are trying to be someone else, or putting on some act or behaviour someone else taught you, you have no possibility of truly reaching people. The most valuable thing you have to give people is yourself. No matter what you think you are selling, what you are really offering is you.
… You want people skills? Then be a person. … It’s worth ten thousand times more than all the closing techniques that ever have been or ever will be invented. It’s called authenticity.
21. He thought about Gus’ long, rambling conversations, his easy manner with potential clients, his erratic, extended vacations. He smiled. “You just love what you do. You love talking with people, asking them questions, learning all about then, finding ways you can help them, serve them, fill a need, share a resource …
22. It’s not better to give than to receive. It’s insane to try to give and not receive.
Trying not to receive is not only foolish, it’s arrogant. When someone gives you a gift, what gives you the right to refuse it - to deny their right to give?
… In fact, every giving can happen only because it is also a receiving.
23. … if the secret of staying young, vibrant and vital throughout life is to hang on to those precious characteristics we all have as children but which get drummed out of us - like having big dreams, being curious and believing in yourself - then one of those characteristics is being open to receiving, being hungry to receive, being ravenous to receive.
… having big dreams and being curious and believing in ourselves - those are all aspects of being receptive, they are all the same thing as being receptive.
… Inside every truth and every appearance, there’s a bit of opposite tucked inside. … So, the secret to success, to gaining it, to having it, is to give, give, give. The secret to getting is giving. And the secret to giving is making yourself open to receiving.
24. The point is not what you do. Not what you accomplish. It’s who you are.
25. I just told you we are giving this contract to your competition. Your response was to thank me and give them a compliment. You’ve got heart.
26. And, the 5 Laws of Stratospheric Success are:
i. The Law of Value - Your true worth is determined by how much more you give in value than you take in payment.
ii. The Law of Compensation - Your income is determined by how many people you serve and how well you serve them. Your compensation is directly proportional to how many lives you touch.
iii. The Law of Compensation - Your influence is determined by how abundantly you place other people's interests first.
iv. The Law of Authenticity - The most valuable gift you have to offer is yourself. In other words, your authenticity is the most valuable gift that you can offer.
v. The Law of Receptivity - The key to effective giving is having the humility to stay open to receiving. Having big dreams and being curious and believing in ourselves are all aspects of being receptive.
These are not new ideas. Just that most of us understand them only intellectually without living them at a much deeper level - emotionally and spiritually. One of the reasons my clients have created wealth and fulfilling business success is because they get coached to live these principles viscerally instead of these being mere intellectual ideas in the head. That's the magic the authors have weaved with their book. They have made available to us, through the enchanting story, the age-old wisdom in a way that it awakens us from deep within and connects us to our inner knowing. As a result, who YOU are shifts and then everything outside shifts.
Wishing you the joy of deeply fulfilling, joyous stratospheric success. It is not given to a few special ones. It is available to all of us. We are at the source of it. It is an act of creation. Each one of us has an equal opportunity to make the choice to create it in our life.
Then, let me end with wishing you the courage to make that choice.
As your Business grows, your role changes rapidly. Most businesses fail to scale up because the founder never learnt how to adapt his / her role to the changing needs of the growing business and ends up becoming a bottleneck in the growth of the very business that (s)he is committed to grow.
A business has 5 distinct stages and the founder CEO has to re-invent herself / himself at each stage. The re-invention required is so dramatic that if not consciously planned for, gets invariably missed out. Unfortunately, the Founder CEO looks at the wrong questions to solve for as (s)he is looking to grow her / his business.
Examples of wrong questions are:
a. How do I increase profitability?
b. How do I get more customers?
c. How do I hire fast enough to manage the growth?
Such questions indicate that the torchlight is turned outwards. Powerful solutions do not get created with an outward focus.
To leave the corridors of mediocrity to occupy the throne of market dominance, the right questions would look like as below for each question in the list above, respectively:
a. How can we make a massive difference to our existing clients? What are their needs that are not being served by anyone in our industry so far? How can we build even more trust in our relationship with our clients?
b. How can we give such enormous value to our target customer community that they queue outside our office to become our customers; instead of us queuing outside the customer’s office to get them to become our customer? How do I and my team get more committed to my clients’ business growth than to selling our products and services to them? How do we make such huge difference to our customers that they take over the role of sales and marketing for us?
c. How do I grow my people to manage our business growth?
Answers to these questions move you in the right direction to help you and your team discover powerful, effective, creative, innovative solutions to create your blue ocean.
Questions that are One-Level Deeper
After asking the Right Questions, as above, by turning the torchlight inwards; the next right step is to increase the intensity of the torchlight by asking deeper level questions as below, respectively:
a. What do I need to do to build a culture of Being of Service to our customer community?
A super successful serial entrepreneur I spoke to last year told me that they never set profitability goals. That they grew by 30% is more an observation than some goal they set out at the beginning of the year. In the same breath, he also observed that the structure of the company is such that it serves the employees first. The jobs are structured such that their lives are compatible with their roles, rather than forcing it the other way around.
b. How do we engage deeply with our customers so that we really understand them?
Another highly successful professional CEO of a large international Bank told me that he gets his team to regularly call up the customers for informal conversations.
c. Where do I need to grow the most to create the space for my people to grow?
An observation I have about authentically successful leaders is that they have no desire to dominate or any need for external power, whatsoever. They are constantly looking at the mirror, taking responsibility for any mess-up and giving away credit for any progress made or success achieved. They have a space that has people feel whole, complete and perfect; and inspires them to unleash their inner genius. It is never so much as who do I hire, as much as who do I be that people give not only their mind, but also their heart and soul to the jobs that they do.
Answering the questions which are one-level deeper grow your business with even greater velocity as you find clarity, direction and inner power to lead your business from good to great.
With the above context, it is now easier to answer the question that we started this conversation with - How to Let Go and Delegate as your Business Scales?
Going one level deeper, the real questions then become:
1. Why am I not able to let go?
2. What are my fears that are stopping me to delegate?
3. How do I grow so that I create the space for my team to become better than me?
4. What is the experience that I leave my team with? Do they feel respect for themselves, for me and for each other in my space?
5. What is the impact I want to create through my business and what kind of culture do I need to nurture for me to be able to create that?
And, of course, if you know me well enough, that’s where I leave you - with even more questions than you started out with me because I contribute to you not by giving you answers to your questions but by leading you to even more powerful questions.
Though, before we end today’s conversation, here are the 5 distinct stages in the life-cycle of a business and what re-invention is demanded of you at each stage, incase you got curious about it. I call the stages Mountains because that is symbolic of the experience a business owner / CEO goes through from stage to stage - as if flying from one mountain top to another. And, if the flight is not powerful enough, finding themselves crashing right to the bottom in the valley between the two mountains.
Mountain 1 - Mountain of Purpose - On this mountain, you are fired up with purpose, passion and the intense burning desire to make a dent in the Universe. Your business idea fires you up, is the cause that touches, moves and inspires you.
Mountain 2 - Mountain of Value - On this mountain, you marry your passion and purpose to what’s missing in the world for the customer community that inspires you to make a difference to. You iterate to find your Blue Ocean. Making a difference, making an impact, being of service to your customer community is what now fuels you.
Mountain 3 - Mountain of Growth - On this mountain, you continue iterating till you find your repeatable, scalable, profitable business model. On this mountain, your cause becomes bigger than you and you inspire others to get lit-up with the cause that you and your business stand for.
Mountain 4 - Mountain of Scale - On this mountain, you grow so much in leadership depth that your people experience themselves as whole, complete and perfect in your space; and engage with their work with not only their mind but also with their heart and soul. Only when employees are engaged this deeply in their work that a business can truly scale in a sustainable manner.
Mountain 5 - Mountain of Mastery - On this mountain, you have mastered yourself. You lead your business to become a steady-state corporate and have put in place a leadership team to succeed you and create business outcomes even more powerfully than you did. To have created a team better than yourself gives you a sense of accomplishment. You have successfully made yourself redundant and it gives you great fulfilment at having transformed your business to become a self-sustaining engine of growth, making an impact in the world and creating passive income for you.
Wishing you the joy of the journey to come home to yourself because as you fly from Mountain 1 to Mountain 5, you grow deeper and deeper to come home to yourself. That's what makes this journey worthwhile.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.