Dramatic difference in following Ethics and Morals by fear versus choice!

Results of doing it by Choice! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

High standards of ethics and morals are expected to be followed in all civilized societies. But sadly speaking, I have not come across any organized teaching of ethics and morals, as part of curriculum in schools and colleges in any country. Yes, there are laws to punish for violation of ethics. Unwritten norms for maintaining morals are practiced by individuals, based upon their perceptions of what constitutes high standards.

Every respectable company across the globe has strong ethics policy, which every employee is expected to honor. In case of non-compliance, company policy would state the punishment up to termination of employment and penalties. One of the most common elements in such policy is “No discrimination or harassment at work”. Yet, I have witnessed in many corporates that managers or managements subtly or obscurely discriminate or harass employees in some form or another, which naturally go with impunity.

Banes of being under fear!

Yes, instilling fear for essential practices is better than allowing non-compliances; but there are few serious implications of such fear factor:

  1. Nothing tangible can fructify, while under fear!
  2. You cannot realize truly value of what you are doing, if under pressure or fear.
  3. You would comply overtly; but be tempted to violate covertly.
  4. Your potential would be leashed by fear or stress.
  5. Fear encourages rebellion at opportune time and kills openness.
  6. You would lose your drive and would need fear or pressure to drive you.

It is because of above that many organizations tend to keep violations under wraps, for fear of losing their reputation, even though violations eventually burst out inflicting bigger damages. Further, very often, we make a virtue out of the label that “we are God fearing”. Fearing God only reflects guilt! Real devotion converts fear into dedication. Fearlessness inspires seamlessness between devotee and deity, not a divide due to fear!

Let us change our notions. Fear may be good for novices to start with; but bound to be frustrating, when novices turn knowledgeable!

Blessings of doing it by choice!

Anything done by choice flourishes! Look at tremendous benefits:

  1. When you adopt ethics, morals and for that reason, any virtue by choice, you can comprehend, evaluate and experience their true values.
  2. It makes you confident and courageous.
  3. It encourages you to be open and upright.
  4. Doing it by choice puts you in driver’s seat!
  5. Choices create devotion and dedication. The net result is true ownership on being ethical and morally strong.
  6. You would automatically inspire your fellow beings to follow what you stand for.
  7. It serves a purpose larger than yourself and that drives tremendous sense of accomplishment and satisfaction in you!

This suggests that there is a dire need to change our teaching curriculum in schools and training courses in companies or institutions. While these can talk about implications of non-compliances; focus should be on coaching (a) why there is no alternative to being ethically and morally sound and (b) how to adopt good values by choice and not for factor of fear.

If we do the above, it would give us a new sense of purpose and direction. It would infuse in us inspiration, enormous energy, enduring motivation and excellent drive! 

So, would you not like to be a citizen, an individual, who puts ethics and morals above self?

Discover how to defeat your Disappointments n Depressive feelings!

Discovering a solution; Source: http://www.flickr.com/

Great leaders’ sayings, golden quotes, good advises, tested truths or terrific experiences carry no value for those, who are disappointed or depressed! Disappointments and depressive feelings are like hunger, when any talk about which food is healthy or harmful loses its relevance; a hungry person just wants food to eat!! In both the cases, emotions are overwhelming; but people often fail to differentiate what they do to resolve. The solution to problem of hunger is to eat food and that everyone does. On the other hand, while facing problem of disappointments or depressive feelings, person rejects the very solution! Is not it ironical?

Why is that?

The problem lies in the way we have learnt to perceive a problem!!!

Most perceive that a problem is pointless and has to bring pain!

Since childhood, it has been drilled in our mind that problem is a bad word. If we created a problem in our early hood, we were punished. We have been taught in schools how people reacted against problems; how problem makers were suppressed or penalized. That is not wrong or right; but one adverse impact is most of us have harbored habit to react negatively when faced with problem. A problem invariably invites negative emotions in us; it could range from frustration to fury, disenchantment and disillusionment to distress and depressive feelings. As it is, human mind falls prey to negatives far in excess of positives and hence negative emotions sucks you more into negative spiral, which could turn into wild thoughts and/or actions.

It is because of above, when we face problem/s, we simply sink! We don’t want to heed to anything sensible. Our senses prevail, only when it starts to hurt our conscience or creates damages, which instill fear in us. It is then that we start to take corrective actions to address the problem!

Our paradigm that problems are pointless must undergo a shift! It is not necessary that a problem has to bring pain or evoke our negative emotions!!

Treat problems as part and parcel of life!

If anyone claims on this planet that he/she never faces problems has serious problem! Everyone from strongest person of world – US President to wealthiest ones like Bill Gates or Warren Buffet have their share of problems. If you still see them smiling, it is because they treat their problems differently.

Pluck following low hanging fruits to change your perspective on problems:

  1. Don’t have phobia of problems. If problems have to come, they would and hence, offer no resistance. It is your resistance to problems, which creates pains!
  2. Once a problem is before you, you would react. But, never act upon 1st reaction of your mind.
  3. More than 80% of problems are self-made!
    Your preset expectations, envy or comparison with others, desires/obsession, clash with your ego or comfort and conflict with your biases account for these, which invariably lead to negative emotions. So, you are focal point, from where most problems emanate!
  4. Recognize a problem; never reject or gloss over it.
    Once you recognize and accept, you would not waste your energy by recapitulating and repenting for efforts you made. You would realize something you did was not right. You need to find out what it was.
  5. A problem is called a problem, only when it has a solution.
    Solution is what you now have to find out by yourself or with help of others. Something, that does not have a solution, becomes sacrosanct as truth.
  6. Once you know the solution, don’t look back; simply implement even if that means radically different route to take.

Dare your disappointments and depressive feelings (Ds)

Here are some golden rules:

Rule # 1

Only when you dare, you can defeat!

Rule # 2

Value of efforts is far higher than the effects (results)!

So, if you made your sincere efforts, never feel dejected if effect or result did not fructify. Results only determine the direction. But, never refuse to follow, what result directs you to do.

Rule # 3

Rule 1-2-3 & Go always applies!

If 3 consecutive attempts did not get to your goal, quit making such attempts. One of the 2 things must change – your approach or goal, since either of 2 is not worth for you. Don’t wait or feel depressed; just make a radical shift.

Rule # 4

Consequences of conscious choices made are not meant for grumbling but for learning!

Don’t think – what’s wrong in grumbling; you would definitely goof in learning!!

Rule # 5

Setbacks provide best opportunity to learn and succeed! 

If you put your faith in this, you can’t be disillusioned or depressed!! Setbacks, irrespective how many, sting only when you don’t consider those as opportunities.

Rule # 6

Problems or failures don’t pull down heaven; but negative emotions emanating from those do put you in hell!

Rule # 7

Negative emotions swell when mixed with negative ones; but sink completely against positive ones!

Eventually, only way to survive and succeed is to counter your Ds by evoking your positive emotions or thoughts.

So, consider your classical notions about failure as opportunities; then opportunities would chase you!

While penning above thoughts and truths, I have been constantly wishing if I could help you, if faced with disappointments! What do you think?

Sure signs, if long term health of organization you serve is not sound!

When Organization is in sound health! Source: http://www.flickr.com/

Is not it a sound idea to check time to time how sound is the long term health of the organization, you are serving or managing? If yes, top management as well as employees could do well to make following reality checks and then seek a change or solution:

  1. Top rated performers leave organization earlier than 10 years for better prospects or serve it for more than 10 years in same unit or hierarchy.
    If an organization can’t offer challenging and attractive roles to its top performers and can’t retain them for at least 10 years, either its management lacks sparks or policies are not solid!
    But the problem could be much more serious, if top performers continue to serve in the same unit or hierarchy beyond 10 years! Either top performers are not truly top ones and it is a faulty appraisal system or they were top rated in earlier years and have got into comfort zones or become lax in recent years!! If someone is a strong performer, it is unlikely that he/she would not seek a change within or outside of the company.
    Every organization’s dynamics demand that role of their high performers remain dynamic!
  2. Under-performers have not improved in max. of 5 years.
    If such employees do not better their performance within 5 years, then company is heavily short of leaders and strong human resource manager. It also shows lackadaisical practices of the organization to accept under-performers (with no sign of change) and less effective bosses or supervisors, who are unable to inspire improvements!
  3. In good times, organization is growing only vertically.
    In boom time of sales or profit or both, if a company confines its growth in same business segment or product range and does not carve out forays into adjacent areas or horizontal growth, it spells faulty business strategy. It is bound to become vulnerable and top heavy in the ensuing years, only to get toppled!
  4. In bad times, company does not or has constraints to invest in inorganic growth.
    A well-managed company has to have contrarian or opportunistic approach. Be bold when going is bad! Grow when time is grim!!
    In a bad economy, bargain buys are possible. If companies do not convert challenges into opportunities, it signifies lack of foresight by management or weak financial muscles even after having had good times.
  5. Management cadre does not visit customers, who don’t have currently new projects or business proposals.
    Most company executives chase fruit of business, when it is ripe, rather than investing time and efforts to sow seeds of business, when ground is fertile and customer would plan to plough his profit. Such companies miss competitive advantage and lose firm feet to walk away with business.
  6. CEO or head of unit is not among first few to come to work in morning.
    Top bosses are trend setters for their employees. If they do not practice what they preach, employees are unlikely to take them seriously.
    So, organizations, where bosses do not lead by examples, do become laggards!
  7. Human Resource Manager (HR) believes in penalizing rather than promoting employee values.
    In many companies, what HR advocates, it does not administer, especially when it comes to empathy, addressing grievances or development of weaker performers.
    It is important for HR to act like a promoter of compliances, rather than administrator of rules and regulations. Its primary focus should be to develop employees, rather than making efforts to retain. Will it not serve as a terrific tonic for company’s health?
  8. More than 10% of employees on an average work for 2 hours beyond normal work hours on any day.
    Does not it imply that company rewards extra work hours more than smart work? It is also an indicator of skewed work-life balance of employees.
  9. More than 5% of supervisors perennially evoke their position or lung power to get things done rather than encouraging employees to be passionate in discharging their duties.
    Practically speaking, even 5% supervisors in this category can make company’s water muddy; but it is hoped that they can be mentored to change their style.
  10. More than 20% of employees do not wear natural smiles on their faces!
    Natural smile reflects satisfaction level among employees and enviable environments of company!!
  11. Management has no bent of mind to ensure that company premises and utilities are kept up-to-date.
  12. Ex-employees do not feel enthusiastic to pay visit to company; nor management shows any care or concern about them.

Good news is that above indicators are fully reversible. It is imperative for management and employees to comprehend these in time and have courage to make corrections! This would then raise company’s credibility and make it a happy and healthy family like!!

How a role model can mold your persona!

A Role Model; source: http://www.flickr.com/

When you get highly impressed with someone for one or more times, you have tendency to choose him/her consciously or unconsciously as your role model. At this point of time, World Football Cup fever is at its top and has caught fancy of millions. Several sports lovers have or would choose their role models; but by end of the tournament, many would also drop their role models like a hot potato!

It has been seen that whenever a political or apolitical leader starts a popular movement, public scrambles to install him/her as its role model. Winner in an election, singer in a competition or celebrity in a show suddenly finds thousands of followers, adoring him/her like no less than the God. They start to track every step or speech of the role model/s blindly. However, faster such role models rise in their popularity among followers, equally fast is their retreat! Many made Barack Obama as their role model, when he first became US President in January 2009. In little more than 5 years, his popularity has taken a severe beating and so is he position as role model with many! What has gone so bad between then and now with Obama, there is no rational explanation!!

Is that how role modeling should work?

Misnomers in making of a role model

There is a lot of confusion and illusion around who can or should be your role model! You often get impressed with a person under following situations:

  1. When person (henceforth “he” used without any gender bias) shows strength in areas, where you are weak.
  2. When person gives you impression that he can address your grievances, greed, guilt or growth.
  3. His physique and/or physical features are fascinating to you.
  4. He is able to trigger your emotions – positive or negative.
    Under positive emotions, you feel more at ease, excited, enthusiastic or optimistic.
    Under negative emotions, you get support from him for your fury, frustration, rebellion or dejection.
  5. He creates euphoria among his audience and you feel tempted to flow with it.
    Such euphoria can be through script, speech, singing, acting, playing or like.
  6. He makes you ecstatic!
    You feel mesmerized by his actions or skills for inexplicable reasons!!

All of above situations are imposing and insinuating; but role model/s selected under influence of these would be destined to failure sooner or later. Such models are actually a liability on you.

There is only one criterion, which can make your selection successful – when a person creates inspiration in you and you become thoughtful, peaceful and positive, that is the person who deserves to become your role model!

Relevance of a role model

Life is exciting, when there is continuous learning! Best and fastest learning comes by example/s!!

And a role model is always an excellent example to emulate.

A role model helps in several ways. Under crisis, your confidence can crack and convert into confusion. A role model can help restore not only your confidence, but gives you courage to emerge stronger after crisis. When you are in dilemma, he can dissolve it and drive you forward with decisions. He has deep impact on your morals and manners.

I have personally seen in many corporates how an influential boss molds culture and style of his/her folks effortlessly. To cite a real example, several sub-ordinates and secretaries in a company had developed habit of receiving visitors or responding with a style of “Hello” on phone in the same way as their highly respected boss!

The best a role model can do is to shape your character and make you charismatic! He is also your true mentor and guide!!

What does a true role model mean to you

  1. He/she is a blessing for you.
  2. He elicits inspiration in you, but not emotions.
  3. He takes away your illusions.
  4. He gives you strength.
  5. When you are at cross roads, you are most likely to remember him and you find a right road to choose!
  6. He has no conflict with your interests.
  7. He keeps your morals and hopes high during high and low cycles that you go through.
  8. He encourages you to learn but not lean on him!

In order to derive maximum benefits from your role model, you may learn his stories, but you must decipher his spirit and substance beneath; watch his actions, but assimilate his attributes; look at his images, but fathom his intentions and ideas.

So, a role model is a great asset for you, provided you make a right choice as above. Then, you would have all reasons to rejoice and reap the rewards!

While falling in love, your feelings are simple; but on continuing, these become complex!

Beginning of Love; Source: http://www.flickr.com/

When you fall in love with anything – nature, job, hobby, friend, stranger or else, you feel you are in a new world; you experience bliss and beauty; you are completely captivated; you are most probably not able to fathom what is happening! It is a feeling, which is no less than divine, pure, unique and simple!! Though you make it to such colossal state; but when you continue, you are unable to maintain it!!!

This is a paradox. What you like and love, you are unable to latch on to it. When you continue with what you have fallen in love with; story start to take turns and your feelings begin to become complex. Things start to fall apart, which is seldom noticed by you and even if you notice, you believe it is a fait accompli!

What happens when you fall in love

You must have fallen in love with one thing or another. If you have not noticed before the state you are in at that time, do it now:

  1. You are singular in your thoughts.
  2. You have no conflicts of thoughts.
  3. You are very focused.
  4. You are excited and energized.
  5. You are extremely positive.
  6. You don’t think of option to retract.
  7. You believe that a whole new world is now open for you.
  8. Your confidence reigns supreme.
  9. You no longer feel constrained by difficulties and limitations.

Such is the intense experience of falling in love that its explanation is beyond words. Remember, we are talking of love, not lust, which is as different as what happiness is compared to pleasure. This state is actually “inspiration”. Falling in love is truly a feeling of inspiration!

Why it starts to change and get complicated, when you continue

Most believes love or inspiration is accidental, coincidental or heavenly sent. Though this belief helps make an exciting beginning, they are unable to take it forward in a right manner. An inspiration or love must be linked to the goal/s, which one wants to achieve in his/her life. Instead, most link it to their desires or wants! This is where conflict starts and seed is sown for complexity! When complexity grows, it gives birth to biases or prejudices!! What looked great earlier starts to look grim; what was congenial becomes controversial; beauty becomes bane.

If you cannot align love or inspiration with your goals thereby giving it a purpose, it is better to drop the former or change the latter (goals). If you do not do it, you would lose love or inspiration in any case once euphoria is over but with pains. Losing out a positive is worse than bearing a negative! This may sound strange but true!!

If love, liking or relationship loses its charm over a period of time, it is not difference of opinions, clash of interest or arguments on the spur of the moment. These are only triggers. Real culprit is the bias, which has already got built and exists in your mind. Fairy tales or most publicized relationships of powerful or popular people/celebrities crack and break because of biases developed.

Moral of this article is damage which your biases can do; even love can’t repair fully. “Inspiration or love” and “Emotions or biases” are mutually exclusive. Never be under illusion that you can flirt with both. Most people do this and that is why they go through bouts of success and set-back, pleasure and pain! Biases are also biggest barrier to your growth and accomplishments. Biases must be banished as briskly as possible. It is only then that you can sustain and maintain love!

So, if you were to choose between “Love’ and “No Bias”, chose the latter since love can bring biases; but biases can never bring love!