RIP Father McGrath

RIP Father McGrath

As you step into the world of work, you are bringing to it the freshness of ideas and the power to change things. And yet, there is the danger that all too soon you will forget why you came to a place like this.

NO, you were not here to understand the corporate sector or the intricate theories of management. You came here to understand yourself and your strengths. To believe how easy it is to make a difference. That is the power of higher education. To instil in you the belief that you can make the world a better place.

Teachers Still Matter Despite EdTech

Teachers Still Matter Despite EdTech

Technology does not mean that we do not need teachers. They have to adopt tech to supplement their skills. Almost every effective method of learning involves having a teacher. The teacher can coach and motivate a student to go far beyond what the student believes himself or herself. Technology is impacting every sector of our lives. Education is no exception It still needs a human touch. A Portuguese study from […]

Why 2 Pizza Teams Work Better

A smaller team helps improve execution. Amazon’s stock has risen more than 36 percent this year. If you had invested $1,000 in Amazon in July 2002 — and had held onto your shares — that money would be worth $83,000 today. In real terms it would be $61,000. Can all this be attributed only to 2 Pizza teams or is there something more.

The right way to do a reference check

The right way to do a reference check

Before you decide to offer the job to the candidate, it is worth doing a strong reference check. It is a great opportunity to verify the facts and claims made by the candidate. More importantly, it is an opportunity to design elements of the job that can leverage the candidate’s strengths and coach the new hire to integrate into the company’s culture. Ask the candidate to share a list of […]

Virtual Reality is being used in business

Virtual Reality is being used in business

From using VR to design warships (it can’t get more serious) to having Realtors do virtual walk throughs. A friend from US mentioned recently that his wife (who is a realtor) has increased her sale because it lets a potential buyer do a virtual walk-through of the property. Try and buy is going to become the way we shop. Learning and development has huge opportunities to use VR in training employees not just on the product and services but to build more empathy with customers. Leadership training can use VR to build empathy – an elusive area so far.

How to Handle Underperformers on a Team You Inherit

How to handle underperformers in a team you inherit? The manager is responsible for the success of the team. It is not fair to top performers when the manager ignores the underperformers and lets the others pick up the slack. How can the manager help?

Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger

Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger

Would you pay millions to have a Buffett lunch? For more than 18 years, people have tried to outbid each other to have lunch with the Oracle of Omaha – Warren Buffett. This year the winning bidder shelled out $2.68 million for the privilege of having lunch with the man.

I have some good news for you. You can get the wisdom of Warren Buffet and his right hand man, Charlie Munger if you pick up the book titled “All I Want to Know is Where I’m Going to Die So I’ll Never Go There”. Yes, that is the title of the book. I was almost not going to read it. I thought it would be another compilation of financial mumbo jumbo and ratios. Then I read the subtitle. It says, “Buffett and Munger – A Study in Simplicity and Uncommon, Common Sense.” This a must-read.

Konkona Sen Sharma: Stories are made of fact, fiction and memory

Storytelling is a craft that has to be honed bit by bit. When we read a story that captures our imagination we can visualise it in our head. We create an image of the protagonist. Visuals have a way of becoming rigid and freezing. So very often when I see a movie that is based on a book that I have read, I am often disappointed.  What I seen the […]

What they do not tell you about class toppers

What they do not tell you about class toppers

If you were the top student of your class, does it mean that you will land up being the CEO? To answer this question, Karen Arnold, a researcher at Boston College, followed 81 high school toppers and those who were top of the class after they finished academics to track their progress. Are they doing well? Are they successful? Find out for yourself.

Who writes those forwards I get on WhatsApp

Who writes those forwards I get on WhatsApp

My problem is that I cannot remember if I have read the joke until I reach the punchline. It is only then resentment rises at the person who sent the joke that I have been receiving over the years. I sometimes believe that sending WhatsApp jokes to each other is a way of dealing with the future. That future when robots will do all our work leaving us jobless. Will we spend all our waking hours reading recycled jokes? Think of the kind of jobs we can create.

Algorithms: Are we giving up our right to choose

Algorithms: Are we giving up our right to choose

What would happen if a tobacco company or alcohol maker or drug dealer were to buy the app to encourage addiction? The fear is not far-fetched. E-commerce companies are using algorithmic nudges to encourages shoppers to buy more than what they need or can afford. The UK government is using behavioural scientists to get people to pay their taxes in time. What is to stop a totalitarian government from using algorithms for something sinister?

Just Post-It

Just Post-It

These yellow Post-It notes are an essential part of my life. I have used these yellow thingies to write welcome notes and bid goodbye. To share a word of appreciation for my team members. To say thank you for great work done. Several appraisals and many bosses later, my team members still have the fading thank you notes and cartoons on their desk.