Status Quo is Unacceptable

Posted in Big Thought, Business, People, Pulpit by Harsha on February 11, 2009

People say “Change is the only thing that is constant”. That is meaningless as it states the obvious. It shows that stuff you know and take for granted today, will change in the future. The marketplace will change for the better or worse. Your marital life may change as well.

But what do you do, now that you have this knowledge. How do you translate that into actions and those into results you want?

Status quo is unacceptable.

If change is inevitable, then why not energize it yourself? Flip the switch on things you’ve been doing the same way for a long time. Take a hard look at your sales process month by month. Remove what does not work.

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Taking Yourself Too Seriously

Posted in Business, People by Harsha on December 13, 2007

If you want to break a stereotype in your head, then enjoy this video on CNN. If you remember to come back to this post, then here are some interesting thoughts for us all.

A cop is a serious, life-endangering job. You can get killed on a routinge traffic violation stop. This guy in RI takes the image of a serious (looking) cop and throws it out of the window. He could be your average cop on the street directing traffic. He could not care less about you in your car driving past him for a fleeting few seconds. Yet this guy is doing what he is doing, right in the middle of the street. It got serious for me when I saw him do the move where he bends backward and bounces off each hand side to side. That is a tough move.

I could not help smiling throughout the video (he busted a few Michael Jackson moves as well) and it reminded me not to take myself so seriously. We all put up these fronts or masks pretending to be more important than we might be and others do the same. We want others to think we’re smart, aggressive, excellent negotiators etc. not at once accepting ourselves for who we are – I struggle with this concept on a daily basis and it is a continuous improvement process. So in this cop’s case, would you be “scared” of him less? Would you respect him less? If he is the same guy who gives you a ticket are you more prone to fight back or buddy him up? What is your reaction to this guy?

People who work in large organizations are like cops who take their jobs too seriously. They have their hand on their gun at all times. Others are petrified in dealing with them and I am sure you deal with such people too. In response to their mask, you need to put up yours.

Take a moment and step back and realize that if one person can take one of the most dangerous jobs in the US and turn it into something that is really funny to look at (some may call it stupid) and totally opposite of what 99.99% of people think a cop should be, then why can’t you do it? How dangerous is your marketing job that you can’t even loosen that tie?

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Posted in Big Thought, Business, People, Pulpit by Harsha on December 7, 2007

Just in case you doubted my empathy approach, here is someone you probably know (and trust) who apparently agrees with me.

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Leap of faith

Posted in Big Thought, Business, New, People by Harsha on December 6, 2007

An experiment is a leap of faith. You don’t know the outcome and fingers are crossed.

I was pondering over my life events, at least those in the recent past, and realized that the best decisions made by me have all been spur of the moment. Not even one was well thought out, analyzed or pondered about. They all have been leaps of faith. I’m sharing this with you because we’re all cookie-cuttered into thinking that decisions need to have logic and a clear explanation behind them. Not true, at least for me. If the exact opposite is true for people you know, then more power to them or to you if that is the case. The idea is, you have to find a rhythm that is comfortable and fits your life. And “sound” decisions have no place in mine.

I recently bought a (two year old) 42″ Sony LCD TV that was never on my Christmas list because a new one is ill-affordable. I paid a basement bargain price to the seller (a work colleague of mine) and it has altered the quality of my lifestyle tremendously.

In 2005, when I got my first job, I needed to buy a car and ended up at a dealership in another state (the salesperson was an acquaintance). My mind was all set on the most fuel efficient vehicle I could find. Then I saw this one-of-a-kind beauty (fully loaded with GPS, leather seats, V6, etc.) and was sold. Totally spur of the moment. That car is doing great and as the old Onida advertisement used to say (for Indians who know this) “Neighbors Envy. Owners Pride”.

My decision to marry the girl I knew in kindergarten was also spur of the moment and life could not be better. She happens to be the only person that I can be with as myself. I did not know this at that time, but I know now.

The job (first one) that I am in was spur of the moment. OK, I needed the gig no doubt but I knew nothing about the industry, knew nothing about how to do the job, knew nothing about my chances of succeeding in it. And it has been the best move I could make in all respects. Today, I am generating value for the company beyond my wildest dreams and probably much more in dollar terms when compared to my MBA colleagues.

Yet, I have always been afraid to embrace this concept. And still am because I am afraid to regret my decision. This is despite the fact that I love all the decisions I’ve made so far and it is expected that some percentage of total decisions are guaranteed to fail. At the same time, I don’t think I can go into the decision making process looking to make a spur-of-the-moment move. It has to happen naturally. Which says something about stress. Stress is pointless 🙂

So how does all this relate to work? To business? Before you do anything else, spend a little time to try and recognize the pattern. Your decisions will either be thoroughly researched or spontaneous like mine. If you do seem to form a pattern then becoming comfortable with it is probably going to give you peace of mind. It also might alleviate some of the buyer’s remorse you experience from time to time.

As a small business owner, fast growing startup entrepreneur or Fortune 500 manager, we all have to make decisions each day. Recognize that what works for the person in the cube next to us, our partners, our bosses and subordinates does not necessarily work for us. It may or may not. But the power to succeed, I think, lies in your ability to recognize the pattern, not just “making the right decision”. This could probably unlock the secret to why some people make awesome decisions in certain (tough) situations.


Posted in Questions by Harsha on November 30, 2007

Why is it that good values in life, especially empathy, are not synonymous with making large sums of money?

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Creativity And Repression

Posted in Questions by Harsha on November 29, 2007

Ever noticed how the most repressed people are also the most creative?

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Dealing With The Jerk At Work

Posted in Big Thought, Pulpit, TOOBs by Harsha on November 27, 2007

Mary Lorenz of has an article on CNN about jerks in the office. You know what I say about this, right?

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