Archive for January, 2014



Dear Friends,


It gives me immense pleasure to share the happenings with you in the tenth edition of The Redwood Edge Newsletter.

As the saying goes, “All birds find shelter during the rain, but the eagle avoids the rain by flying above the cloud”. This insightful attitude
is a need of the hour for today’s leaders. To borrow from military vocabulary, the world is going through VUCA situations
VOLATILITY, UNCERTAINITY, COMPLEXITY and AMBIGUITY. Leaders and Leadership traits are really going to be tested and will make them rise above the clouds as eagles.

These challenging times, apart from affecting the Economic and political scenarios have a huge impact on the SOCIAL Dimension.
The slowdown affects all age groups in different aspects, from Senior citizens to the youth brigade of the nation, as it mitigates
opportunities. According to 2011India Census, the youth population in the age group 15-34 has years increased from 353 million in 2001 to 430 million in 2011. Current predictions suggest a steady increase to 464 million in 2021.
Recently, I read a report in The Economic Times which mentions that the corporate world needs more than ever before Humble and People oriented Leaders.
According to famous Business Author Ram Charan, leaders in modern times must have Perceptual Ability, Qualitative Judgment, and Credibility in them. Level 5 Leadership as mentioned in Jim Collins’s book GOOD TO GREAT is of paramount importance to showcase

So the question on every Leader’s mind is HOW TO LEAD? If you pick up any book on ‘self-help’, by and large, the initial chapter you see, will be on “leading in challenging times’, In my opinion what matters most is focus on three factors- CHARACTER, PERSPECTIVE AND ACTION.

CHARACTERPersonalities with characters do not command excellence, they do not demand respect, they build it. Leadership- with character is A Philosophy and A Mindset.


PERSPECTIVEStrong Perspective with strong character acts as a catalyst in the LEADERSHIP ENABLING ENVIRONMENT. The perspective on the tough times can really make a difference. The way you lead the organization from the existing position can take the

organization to new heights of Success.

ACTION John Adair’s action centered leadership model is always a hit formula. The components Task, Team and Individual not only determine the individual success, but also organizational success.

This is a facilitator for leaders to run self and Organization through challenging times.


“Organizations don’t make Profits; it’s the People who do.”


Happy Reading!!!



In this edition of our newsletter, we will focus on personalities who overcome odds to succeed in different spheres of life.
I refer to them as Individuals with a high BEAT INDEX.


Believers- They are firm believers in themselves from- values to ability, from passion to change, from team to organization and from family to community. They believe in their Dreams and Vision.

Enablers-This particular style of leadership revolves around three critical elements – Teamwork to Establish Collaboration, Relationships to Harmonize Victory and Tasks to Derive Results.
By practicing all three, a Leader masters what we call the “Art of Involvement” and “Facilitation of a Fair Share of Responsibility.”

Achievers They focus on results and close out excuses from the LEADERSHIP GAME. They inculcate the spirit of Achievement and Execution in the Organization.

Transformers- They thrive on opportunities and are the change agents to create BETTER, BIGGER AND BROADER thinking routes
to adapting and evolving constantly.

Here are examples of some Leaders with a high BEAT INDEX.






Dr. Raghuram Rajan…

                                  A Leader of Hope


Dr. Raghuram Rajan is probably on his way to become a “Financial Rock Star”. A savior, A Doctor for the Indian Economy. His appointment as the youngest Governor of India’s central Bank RBI has been welcomed across all sections. Former Chief Economic Advisor to Government of India Raghuram is now playing the role of lead hero in shaping the ‘picture’ of Indian Economy,
An IIT-IIM alumnus, a Doctorate from MIT, he has many noted achievements and was largely acclaimed for predicting the 2008 slowdown. He is a core economist at heart with a great foresight to analyze the Global Economic situations.



                                 Faces of Global Economy

 Christine Lagarde                            Dr. Janet Yellen


Dr. Janet Yellen has been nominated as the first woman of the Federal Reserve of America. If appointed, she will succeed Ben.S. Ber­nake .With the immense knowledge and awareness that she posseses, she is poised to become one of the most powerful women in the world.

Yellen 67, will be the first woman president in the 100 years history of Federal Reserve. She will be the first woman to lead any central bank amongst top seven countries which include Germany, UK and Japan. This will be a paradigm shift in the male dominated banking industry.
With Christine Lagarde –Chief of International Monetary Fund (IMF), they can change the economic course of the world. Christine is
also a prominent French politician who once ran the international law giant Baker & McKenzie. According to her, leaders must take on complex professional challenges to spark new ideas.

She has tried to change the IMF’s culture while also coping with the European debt crisis and a sluggish Global Economy.









 Brijmohan Lall Munjal…

               HERO behind the Success Story…


Hero Honda was a name synonymous with bikes in India. Every Indian middle class family had the obsession of having either a Hero or
a Bajaj as their two wheeler. Very often, people did not even realize that Hero and Honda were two different companies. The realization
came alive only when the two called it Quits to the long lived partnership.


Brijmohan Lall Munjal, the Man behind the huge success of Hero Motors is no stranger to adversities. For he found his feet in post-Independence India and today is a corporate brand in himself. He faced challenges of varying hues and magnitudes.
But, even for the battle-scarred, nonagenarian, nothing could have matched the intensity of what happened two years ago.


In 1984, the Munjal Group joined hands with Japanese bigwig Honda to manufacture motorcycles in a country that did not think beyond scooters. Initially, he was hesitant as he wanted to follow the trend and make scooters, which the entire middle class had an eye on.
But Honda wasn’t willing.

In fact they had already found a partner in the Firodia’s (makers of Kinetic). But, as fate would have it, Hero Honda and its motorcycles gave everybody a run for their money and, by 2001 it became India’s largest two-wheeler manufacturer leaving the leading brands behind. It was indeed a significant milestone in the journey. The company saw steep increase in revenues. But, inexplicably for the industry, on
December 21, 2010, Hero and Honda split. Despite the various phases that Hero Motocorp has gone through, they have come out strongly defying odds and generating revenue of INR 239.43 billion.


Mr. Munjal’s journey at Hero is an extraordinary story of entrepreneurship in the phase of adversity. Moreover, it is the tale of a man who has lived his life on the principle that if you work hard and be good to people around you, success in business will, inevitably, follow. Thus Mr.Munjal symbolizes the famous saying:

“Adversity causes some men to break… Others to break records…”





  K. Radhakrishnan,

                          The Mars Man


On 5thNovember 2013 the satellite ‘Mangalayan’ was successfully sent to Mars. Everyone applauded ISRO for this unique mission.
The humble leader behind this successful mission was none other than K.Radhakrishan. An MBA, and Phd in space applications, he
was handpicked by Satish Dhawan in 1980 to lead budgetary planning division of ISRO. The Institution was then growing rapidly and
so were its budgets. Radhakrishnan was given the responsibility to make 10-year plans for its programmes.

He had to work with ISRO managers on the one hand and the Delhi bureaucracy on the other. It was perfect training for a future leader of ISRO. He watched Dhawan closely, learnt many qualities Dhawan was known for, and developed a knack of preparing meticulous reports.

When he took over as chairman of ISRO, his message to his colleagues, who are the future leaders of ISRO was:

“Take a hard look at yourself”
I’m sure that the leadership of K.Radhakrishnan will take ISRO and Space Science to new heights.





Akio Toyoda,

              The Turnaround Specialist


What if you are the son of chairman of the company and still you have to fill the application form to enter in the company?
The answer is simple; you become Akio Toyoda, who is a trouble shooter, turnaround specialist for the vehicle giant Toyota.
His takeover as the youngest president of Toyota is fuelled with many controversies. But his colleagues describe him as
‘Roll –up –your–sleeves kind of guy”. He overcame all the odds including the ‘vehicle recall’, the earthquake and the tsunami in Japan.
Despite all this, Toyota has retained the position of top carmaker in the world.
Vehicle recall in 2011 was the biggest nightmare in the history of his career in Toyota. But then some leaders are born to lead and born to BEAT the storms.


I always feel a wave of happiness when I read about such extraordinary people. They are the guiding force for us.
It is said that in corporate world, learning is eternal, and I will say that Learning in our daily life is eternal too.
I interact with different people during my workshops and coaching sessions but the one thing which comes out strongly is the;

                                                                      ‘Willingness To Succeed’

In tough times, this zeal equips people to scale new heights of success.


The Redwood Strokes


The year has created a myriad of memories for The Redwood Edge and various opportunities exploring different industries.
It has marked a period where interaction at various levels happened from the senior leadership to the Middle Management and to the
Aspiring Youth. Sharing a few glimpses…


Learning & Organization Development Roundtable is a not-for-profit society driving the cause of Learning & Organizational
Development (L&OD) across Asia. Established in 2010, under the guidance of Dr. Sujaya Banerjee, it is a pioneering initiative in
its own right. The Roundtable is committed to help L&OD practitioners build scalable and sustainable Learning Teams and Organizations.
I was one of the speakers for the launch of ‘L&OD  Pune Chapter’. The topic of discussion was:
“The Only Thing That Matters – Building Character Through Leadership Management”.




Train The Trainer, Leadership and Motivational Sessions

We have trained more than one lakh participants from different companies on various topics. Nothing really excites me more than
my interaction during the TTT Sessions. We successfully trained different trainers of leading corporate companies like Edelweiss,
Uninor, Mercedez Benz. This workshop is held for one or two days where In house trainers of respective companies are trained on
topics such as Sales, Leadership, as well as on delivery methodology and effective communication to participants.


In the last few months, Leadership and Motivational sessions across various industries have essentially been the highlight.
It was really great to address participants across varied industries and countries.



Bankers Academy –Nepal

I had the proud privilege to address a league of bankers in Kathmandu, Nepal. The meet was organized by National Banking
Training Institute, (NBTI), The Banking Academy of Nepal. I also conducted a workshop for the bankers of NIC Bank. NIC
has recently merged with Asia Bank and has become NIC Asia bank. (The first merger in commercial banking in Nepal)


VIT Vellore


As the saying goes, “Youth is progress, youth is power”. When 50 percent of your population is youth, it is always a
feeling of immense pride and pleasure to interact with them. I got a chance to address the youth brigade of Vellore Institute of
Technology at their annual event IMPACT – 2013.



Till we meet again. All the best and KEEP RAISING THE BAR OF LEADERSHIP…­­





Prakash Rohera



The Redwood Edge

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The more sessions i do on leadership , the more i realize it is so individualistic … its all about people and we are calling it as THE BEAT INDEX for LEADERSHIP … BELIEVER , ENABLER , ACHIEVER AND TRANSFORMER .. we are working on this and will keep you posted on the development ….all the best and have a great year ahead…..