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Had a great opportunity to witness the passing out parade at NDA….wow .. feel proud and the passion and the pride .. WE SALUTE YOU ….

Had a session for SIMS ,PUNE for 300 students on JOSH TO WIN… the students  are mainly from the defence background…. Great interacting with them and wishing them all the best.. parents  keep the INDIA FLAG FLYING and the KIDS will become captains of  the industry tomorrow… KEEP SHINING.

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Just got back from a little holiday in Bali… grt time with family … Now back to work. Weekend was special for sports enthusiasts like me… close IPL games and EPL championship decided in the last minute .. wow what a fightback from Manchester City… two goals scored in extra time to decide the EPL champions… this is champion stuff….this is inspirational …. never ever give till the very end…. THE celebrations were compelling and enthralling…. way to go with life. ………Hope such magical stuff happens on the ECONOMIC FRONT …the  financial numbers are not adding up….. HOPE IS THE WAY……and I am sure something magical will happen….. IIP nos  contracting, double dip recession in UK,, EUrozone, dollar at abt  Rs. 54 ….Inflation at  a new high ….  Man one  needs some  SPARK AND MAGIC…. well being an optimist , there are so many things happening that are inspirational .. THE TYRE MEETS THE ROAD AND  YOU AND I  KEEP RIDING  THESE ROADS…. Take care Champions.

Chris Gayle six hits a 11 yr old girl in the stadium on Tuesday ( when he five sixes in a row)……result a  nasal fracture .. and when chris and mallyas go to meet her in the hospital, she says don’t stop hitting sixes.. I don’t mind being hit again… WOW WHAT SPIRIT FOR A 11 yr old…Gayle is touched and humbled and leaves with her his jacket…….    inspirational indeed…. …

Hi had a hectic…

Hi had a hectic weekend… first our own REDWOOD OFFSITE and then a session in Ahmedabad  for Vodafone , Gujarat … an audience of 650 champions.   the theme was HUM SE BADHKAR HUM…. great team and audience …. I am sure they will march on like true winners and achieve great milestones….Felt great conducting the session and interacting with a very passionate audience .. my compliments to the Leadership Team  lead by Brijesh Bajpai ..and the team members.. The theme highlighted 3 elements … ACCELERATE , INNOVATE and APPRECIATE…. great theme …great start to the new financial year…. . cheers and all the best to Vodafone , Gujarat and really enjoyed the hospitality.

Around 6 months … deja vu and last ball .. Rewind 6 months back … Daniel Christian playing for South Australia bowling the last over and RCB needs 6 runs  of the last ball and Arun Kartkhik Slogs it to mid wicket for a win…. yesterday same bowler playing for Deccan and opposite him  batsman Rohit Sharma .. last over runs required 18 .. and last ball runs required 3 and result… yes you are right .. 6 over long on… Would not like to be in his shoes… Mumbai Indians Won…. wow .. this is incredible stufff .. how many feel that   a team requiring 18 runs of the last over would win… this is the new age of cricket….. expect the unexpected… and so true for LIFE in general… Lightning can strike twice and IN LIFE… BE PREPARED FOR THAT…. cheers .. till next time.. and thank you Deccan Chargers and Mumbai Indians for giving us a classic…..happy viewing…       

Newsletter 8   –  KARMA – Perform to Transform

 

“Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.”

                                                         -Albert Einstein”

Dear Friend,

It gives me immense pleasure to share the happenings around with you through our eighth edition of The Redwood Edge Newsletter.

Wisdom is to know what to do next…virtue is doing it

As we gear up for the new financial year it is critical to understand that amidst the Economic Uncertainty the need of the hour is to not just predict but start preparing. Prudence suggests that instead of predicting the outcomes of uncertain events it is better to take stock of what we have and prepare for the future.

In this transition between year gone and year to come what leaves a impact and stays with us is the learnings from the past. This acts as a catalyst of growth for our future. It’s all about capitalizing on these learnings and acting towards reaching new heights. Our Performance and Results are tied in a cause and
effect relationship.

“Our Actions Define Our Future”

The inspiration for the title of the Newsletter “KARMA – Perform to Transform” arises out of the thought that Mere executing will not help. Growth driven actions are the only way forward. If Karma is right; the results will be achieved. Thus, one has to “Perform To Transform”

One barrier that stops most of us physically and mentally from trying is AGE. We assume that we are too old to perform or transform. This takes me to three very inspirational stories of 102, 87 and 83 years young heroes who inspite of the passage of time stand as the apt examples for the never ending Karma in the true sense.

The Stories of Robert Reardon 87yrs, Ron Akana 83yrs and Fauja Singh 101yrs

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The distinction of being the oldest Flight Attendant belongs to 87- year-old Robert Reardon of Delta Airlines. Mr. Reardon began his career flying for Northwest in 1951. That sums to 61 years of Work Experience in the Airline Industry. A glory personified example of ongoing Karma…Wow…!!! What an Achievement…!!!

Another airline attendant that inspires me is Ron Akana. When the Passengers of United Airlines are busy finding their seats and settling down, they notice a silver-haired flight attendant in bifocals who greets them with an “Aloha, welcome aboard.” Ron Akana 83, has worked as a flight attendant for 63 years, clocking some 20 million miles along the way, the equivalent of circling the globe about 800 times or flying roughly 40 times to the moon and back.

Winner for life…!!! Derek Anthony Redmond

 

Derek Anthony Redmond is now a retired British athlete. Before participating in the Barcelona Olympics in 1992, in his heydays he held to his credit the British record for 400 meters sprint, and won gold medals in the 4×400 meters relay at the World Championships, European Championships and Commonwealth Games. Injuries consistently interrupted Redmond’s Career.

                                                           All was well until that sprint in the 400 meters at the semi- final of 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona. In the final straight about 250 meters from the finish, his hamstring snapped. He hobbled to a halt, and then fell to the ground in pain. Stretcher bearers made their way over to him, but Redmond was determined to finish the race. He began to hobble along the track. He was soon joined on the track by his father, Jim Redmond, who barged past security and on to the track to get to his son. Jim and Derek completed the lap of the track together, with Derek leaning on his father’s shoulder for support. As they crossed the finish line, the crowd of 65,000 spectators rose to give Derek a standing ovation. However, as his father had helped him finish, Derek was officially disqualified and Olympic records state that he “Did Not Finish” the race. Redmond’s struggle in the 1992 semi-final later became the subject of one of the International Olympic Committee’s ‘Celebrate Humanity’ videos.

Redmond currently serves as Director of Development for sprints and hurdles for UL Athletics.

On January 10, 2012, his father Jim was announced to be one of the Olympic torch bearers in London during the summer games.

The Indian Sports Front

The Moment of Truth

Amidst the disappointments of losing the Match against Bangladesh, billions took a sigh of relief. Sachin Tendulkar added yet another milestone to his inspirational and legendary Cricket Career by scoring a Century of Centuries.

Now…That’s KARMA at its Best….!!!

The proud champions of Asia Cup 2010 – India, failed to qualify to the Finals. It became the Green’s Game. It is all about believing that you can…and you will…!!! Bangladesh filled with self confidence and belief defeated the two strong contenders for the Asia Cup and awed the cricket world by playing the most inspired and brilliant cricket to qualify for Finals. Through the ultimate success and the cup was snatched from them by a defeat of just 2 runs, they won a million hearts by their passion and attitude.

The Wall” Retires

 

After an inspiring career graph of 21 years and a prolific run through 2011 scoring five centuries, the “Wall” of Indian Cricket Team- Rahul Dravid announced his retirement on March 9, 2012. Regarded as one of the greatest players of his generation and among the most accomplished ever, Rahul Dravid has earned respect in the eyes of fans as well as the designated people of Cricket Fraternity. He is seen as one the Game’s thinkers meriting a place on the MCC’s (Marylebone Cricket Club) committee and delivering the Bradman Oration in December 2011 – the first cricketer from outside Australia to do so.

What an Inspiration…of winning billions of hearts with sheer determined KARMA…Cheers…!!!

Rise of Hockey…

 

Amidst the Silence in the, Major Dhyan Chand National Stadium it seemed as if everything had slowed down….and then… GOAL!! A roar erupted as supporters and players alike jumped with joy.

The Indian Hockey Team had made it! They were through! The Indian Men’s Hockey team literally thrashed France by scoring 8-1 in the final qualifying match and booked themselves a sure seat in the 2012 London Olympics.

Playing in the Olympics is nothing new for the Indian Team which has won the Olympic gold eight times This year’s win was very significant though as the team had missed out on the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing 

 “Well Done Team! You have made us proud, and all the best for the 2012 London Olympics.”

81st Union Budget 2012 -13 …

Our government needs to more closely focus on their Karma and keep a check on what impact their actions can cause. If the Policy Paralysis continues to prevail, despite endless budgets the achievement of desired goals looks hard to fulfill.

Placing the Union Budget on March 16th, 2012 Finance Minister, Mr Pranab Mukherjee mentioned that there has been a Economic Slowdown which was indicated by the rising rate of inflation, fiscal deficit overshooting target, falling Investments. The performance of different sectors the impact too has been mixed. On one hand where the growth rate has noticeably slowed down in Manufacturing and Mining Sector, the Pharmacy along with other sectors have been balanced.

He emphasized that what becomes critical to achieve growth is to woo the Finance Capital continuously, Increase Public and private Investments, Reduce Expenses and Channelize Domestic Savings.

Where the budget for other areas looked fundamentally positive or at least neutral in terms of Growth prospects though lacking definite timelines for implementation, Railway Budget resulted in a Political crisis that clearly exposed the government’s vulnerability..

Quick Flashes

The Dominoes Effect

Pfizer Inc has terminated a $350 million deal to sell Indian company Biocon’s insulin products globally, dealing the Indian company a blow and calling into question similar tie-ups because of a change in the US company’s strategy. 

R & D – The New Mantra

Infosys strengthens its Product Research & Development Center The present team of 500 world-class engineers is expected to grow to 1,000 over the next two years.

Industrial Production In India

Industrial Production in India increased 6.8 percent in January of 2012. Industrial production measures changes in output for the industrial sector of the economy which includes manufacturing, mining, and utilities. Industrial Production is an important indicator for economic forecasting and is often used to measure inflation pressures as high levels of industrial production can lead to sudden changes in prices. The inflation rate in India was last reported at 5.3 percent in January of 2012

The Leaders All Set

Lessons of 2008 hold CEOs in good stead as economy hits slowdown mode again Today, as murmurs of the economy slowing down reach a level where they cannot be ignored, companies have once again started announcing austerity measures, coupled with the inevitable job cuts. On 1st March, it was announced that the Indian economy grew at its slowest pace in almost three years in the quarter ending December 2011.

The Redwood Strokes

It was indeed a eventful beginning to the year as it came with opportunities for us to share thoughts and interact with our esteemed clientele through workshops revolving around Leadership, Sales, Motivation, Team Building, Change Management, Interaction Styles etc

The industries that we interacted with were IT, Financial sector, Out of Home Advertising to name a few.

Being a proud Alumnus of SIBM, it was an honour for me to be featured in the 1st Edition of the Book “Guts and Glory” published by SIBM that speaks about the Entrepreneurial Excellence of 25 SIBM Alumni. It gave an opportunity for us to share our stories with the world.

We as The Redwood Edge Team would like to thank each one of you for walking with us on this path of Making a Difference.

We are pleased to announce the launch of a new initiative. In response to various requests we are introducing a One-to-One Coaching Program aiming at Evolving as Efficient Personal Leaders to understand, identify and analyze their potential and take them to the next level of effectiveness with a wide range of tools, we intend to provide insights and awareness needed to create a meaningful Personal Development Plan with measurable goals.

Also, understanding the criticality and significance of Interaction, we have introduced “Interact to Impact” program to effectively handle Interactions. It also emphasizes on the fact that why do we find it difficult to interact with some people and how can we derive Positive and desired outcomes from the same.

We look forward to your support for this initiative and our continued relationship.

We as professionals have no finishing line to our Karma…We have to constantly Perform to Transform…the journey of KARMA – Perform to Transform continues…

I hope you enjoyed reading the 8th edition of the News letter and I look forward to receiving your comments at: prakash@redwoodedge.com

Best Regards,

Prakash Rohera
Director

 

Introduction:

Prakash is a motivational speaker and corporate trainer. He established The Redwood Edge in 1997 and has conducted over 2000 sessions with 100,000 participants in over 25 countries – Australia, Bahrain, China, England, Singapore, Thailand, Turkey, USA, UAE among others.  And with each passing day, he scripts a new chapter in his amazing ‘story of passion’.

Story

A poster which reads ‘The spotlight is on you’ is the first thing you will notice when you walk into The  Redwood Edge, Prakash Rohera’s office in uptown Pune. And when you look around at the walls decorated with the fan mail and the accolades he has received from heads of organizations all over the world, you know that the man has made it.

It’s an amazing feat for someone as personal as a corporate trainer to transcend geographies and cultures, but Prakash seems to have done it with ease. How exactly did corporate training happen for him?  Prakash’s career path was the conventional one – science and then a management degree which led to his career in HCL, Citibank and Bank of America till destiny and passion finally combined into a heady cocktail to take him on the path of training. “I think the career path in those times was very limited. Either it was medicine or engineering. Engineering wasn’t my cup of tea, and it was nice and glamorous to say “I want to be a doctor” so that was what I chose.  But, those were only dreams and there wasn’t much of magic happening. I tried the medicine route but I didn’t clear the entrance exam and that closed that avenue for me. So I had to move on. But I didn’t want to move on to something other than science. So I chose to do chemistry from Hindu college.”

Like many aspiring management graduates today, Prakash too grappled with the ‘Why MBA?’ dilemma.

“There was no major direction in my life and I was kind of drifting a little bit until some people said why not MBA?  So I started looking at MBA seriously and got into Symbiosis. It was a tough journey, a very chequered one but I think the journey became more streamlined when I joined SIBM Pune. It taught me leadership and gave me an identity.”

The going, however, was tough. Prakash’s father was working with the RBI and his mother was a homemaker. And money was hard to come by.

“Doing an MBA was definitely a strain on the resources for my parents, and hence like any other middle class student, I had my usual share of compromises and there was a lot of pressure on me.  I used to do a part time job while I was doing my MBA. I used to sell my voice on FTII, Pune and I would get something like 15 rupees for an hour. But that was important for me because I needed that money.”

“1996 was a crazy year for me. I am an asthmatic and I had a  spate of severe asthma attacks. My lungs were down to almost 21% and I was in and out of hospital for 11 months. I couldn’t even walk. It was crazy. Pollution in Delhi was probably one reason. If that had not happened, would I have been an entrepreneur? I really don’t know. But I had to face the realities of life which were staring at me – No job, two daughters aged 3 years and 3 months respectively , housewife, retired father, so who earns the bread?  “I had to start from somewhere…. It was tough and I learnt the 3 F’s in life – flight, fright or fight.  My family and I chose to fight.”

It was sometime during this difficult period that Prakash came up with the name The Redwood Edge.

“I had gone to attend a workshop in California, while I was with Bank of America. Just after that I got this attack. I was on my hospital bed going through the photographs and saw this redwood forest in California. I remember I was told that they fight among themselves for oxygen. And whoever fights for oxygen grows taller.  I remember being told that they fight among themselves for oxygen. And whoever fights for oxygen grows taller – so tall that they are the tallest trees in the world – and so broad that you can drive a tree through its trunk.  That became my inspiration – strength, stability and growth.”

Back then, Prakash was into his third job at Bank of America after earning his stripes at HCL and then Citibank.

“HCL taught me how to sell, Citibank taught me how to train and Bank of America taught me how to run a business unit.”

So now when he looks back at his career, everything falls into place like a neatly fitted jigsaw puzzle.

“HCL was my first job. It was a campus placement and I was very thrilled. My job was selling computers door to door. During that time, I got a job offer from Citibank. I went for the interview and I guess since my father was a banker, I always had this desire to work in a financial institution. HCL was fantastic for me. No doubt about it.  Citibank was the exposure I needed in terms of banking…..!

I joined the frontline at the branch. The mistakes I made at HCL helped me bridge certain gaps when I joined Citibank. At HCL, I had to sell computers from day one. I struggled like crazy and I don’t believe a word when people say “You were born a sales guy.” It’s a learned skill and you learn with the inputs given to you, the experience and the involvement that makes you a true sales guy.

It was at Citibank that corporate training happened to Prakash. He was doing a workshop for new hires, when the country head walked in. His intrinsic flair shone through and before he knew it, Prakash was off to Manila to be trained as a trainer for Citibank.  He was doing what he was most passionate about – training.   It was at this time that Bank of America entered the Indian arena and to set up their retail business, they had a need for a full time HR professional trainer who had prior retail experience. It was as if someone had tailored the job description especially for Prakash. Life then was wonderful. A trainer in a multinational organisation, learning, travelling, making some money and living the good life. Till 1996. Till the asthma attack.

“I didn’t know what to do. Even if I go back to a job, there was always a worry of getting another attack. So it was a very uncertain period.   I chose Pune – a city I had always loved while doing my MBA, bought a small apartment here and started life from scratch.  I started calling up people and telling them that I was into training. It was tough to get my first client. My first workshop as an entrepreneur was at Indira Institute of Management. It took me a while to set the ball rolling  and the  family was right behind me…..in this journey..…

That is the third time in the interview that Prakash has mentioned his family and his wife so I ask him about her and how he manages his professional and personal life.

“Sangeeta has been like a rock. When I started on my own, I remember my wife telling me, “I didn’t marry Mr. Bank of America, I married Prakash.” Once I was doing a workshop for a client in Hyderabad and my daughter was in the ICU in Pune. I didn’t get to know. Because she said, “If I called you, the workshop would have got affected”. It was a leadership workshop for the client. And when I reached Pune they took me straight to the ICU. So who is the star? My wife Sangeeta”

Prakash pauses to take a sip of coffee. The mug has ‘Discover the winner in you’ printed on it.

“Yes, my work demands long hours and a lot of travelling but when I am back, I just have a ball. One option is quality time and the other is quantity time. You should focus on quality time. Yes, we have some rules. We take two vacations a year. So that is absolutely family time. Nothing else comes in between. And we are a very close knit family. We’ve got two daughters. The elder one is doing her BBA in Singapore and the younger one is appearing for 10th standard boards. So we are just four of us and my sister’s family. Parents passed away and  we all became pillars for each other.”

The one thing that comes across strongly when you speak with Prakash is his fervour and zeal. The guy exudes passion. And that is one thing that he wants young, budding entrepreneurs to have.

“I think the best thing for us to do in this one life is to be able to see what your calling is and get the maximum out of it. That’s what my advice is to all the people – find out what you love doing. I am so happy because today we have moved away from conventional careers to so many alternate careers. Whatever you do, you have to enjoy it – then only will you  be able to go beyond…..

Opportunities are waiting and they will always wait. No matter how tough the situation is. And if you are good and have the belief, business will come. If not now, then a little later. Like I said, in life you have three options – flight, fright or fight. The choice is yours. Choose to fight. And work on yourselves as individuals, as human beings, as professionals  to become better than you were yesterday. I hope the concept of being honest with yourself and the people around you doesn’t go out of fashion. Because then people will value you.. one has to be true to self and be called Credible and Competent.. The problem in life for many people is not that they didn’t reach their dreams. The tragedy in life is that they didn’t have any dreams. So have your dreams. And somewhere down the line, those words like vision, strategy, path will all make sense.”

Prakash has come a long way from selling computers at HCL. There was an instance when a client told him that dogs and  salesmen weren’t allowed in his office. Even today after nearly 2000 sessions, Prakash is as nervous and charged up as he was when he started his training firm… He strongly believes each session IS AN OPPORTUNITY TO  LEARN AND TRAIN BETTER.

One thing that struck me as fantastic was that Prakash has never cancelled a single workshop. Not once in his entire career. But there was this one time when he did come really close to doing so.

“Can you see that glass door through which you entered? About four years back, in 2008 I just slipped and fell through the door and slit my arm. Blood gushed forth like a fountain – this was on a Friday but on Monday I was in a workshop with a plaster, after undergoing a 6 hours surgery on Saturday, in Jehangir hospital. Dr. Pankaj Jindal was the doctor and he told my wife, “Is your husband mad?” And she said, “Nahi thoda dewaana hai.” There are some beliefs that you must have. It can be tough. It can be lonely and it’s a test. It’s your Passion that will get you through.  Like we say .. It’s your life and You are the STAR and the spotlight is on you.”

Before the interview, when I was doing my reading on Prakash, the one thing that I found odd was the fact that Prakash still had his head office in Pune. Wouldn’t Mumbai or Delhi be a better option for a corporate trainer?

“This city has very good vibes for us. The city, the people, the culture – it is a warm city. We thought about moving to Mumbai, Delhi or Chennai, but I don’t think we will ever do that. The gains are far greater and whenever you have the mathematical equation saying greater than zero, you  go with that decision.”

Prakash’s business mainly involves catering to his clients’ needs and so the eventual multiplication of training workshops on leadership, passion and motivation seemed inevitable. Expansion is limited because, as Prakash puts it, one cannot do more than 365 days of training a year. Self help books are in the pipeline and Prakash is very excited about the two books he is writing. Once again, his clients encouraged him to do something that was always at the back of his mind. Keep an eye out for ‘One Life, One Chance’ and ‘Selling with Passion’.

Being a speaker does take its toll and at times Prakash finds it hard to keep himself upbeat 24X7.

“When you are travelling so much and spending so much time away from family , there are times when you feel a little less charged up.  Of course we are all human and are error prone, it is not that we will not have our off days, but what the hell … that’s LIFE – right?

My dear friend Sanjeev’s father  is 90 years old. He is a Doctor… And he goes to his clinic every day. .  Once I asked him, “Uncle, how do you do it?” And he said, “When the patients call me doctorsahab, I know and feel alive.”

And it’s such things that keep me going. My motto is Walk Tall Throughout My Life. I can’t change  the  world, I know it. But I can change my corner of the world which is my work, my home. That is what I want to keep doing till I am alive. Train and motivate people, be a facilitator in realizing their potential and maybe  help them achieve their goals ….and in the process just make a little  difference. Because frankly that is all that I know… Training ”

We ended the interview by  his quote….

PRAYER IN YOUR LIPS,

DREAMS IN YOUR EYES

PASSION IN YOUR HEART,

ACTION IN YOUR HANDS …. 

WHO WILL EVER STOP YOU…

Dear Friend,

It gives me tremendous pleasure to write to you and share the happenings around with all of you with our latest edition of The Redwood Edge Newsletter.

‘Only as high as I reach can I grow, only as far as I seek can I go, only as deep as I look can I see, only as much as I dream can I be!’

The last few months have been months where, after interacting with lots of friends, colleagues, participants and clients, I have to come to realize that it’s been a period for people where they have had to fight harder and hence the inspiration our current title FLIGHT , FRIGHT OR FIGHT……

FIGHT, is a part of our life, we are all there to live and fight one more battle. This newsletter is dedicated to and comes straight from the heart to all of you who have, at some point of time fought and won the innumerable battles of life. May you continue to inspire yourselves and us on this exciting journey of life – after all, life is all about challenges and overcoming them, becoming stronger in the process.

I look around the world and it reinforces the word – FIGHT which has an added new dimension – Japan the tsunami /earthquake along with recession,  Libya, Egypt, Syria all fighting oppressive regimes, Europe and USA  fighting the economic instability and most importantly, closer home we are constantly fighting terrorism and corruption. We all are part of this one world and along with this we are fighting our individual battles on our individual playing turfs… The match has truly begun and results are awaited …..

Have you ever wondered what creates a winning equation in personal and professional challenges? In the constant endeavor to enhance our current applied abilities, we all need to reinvent ourselves and stride ahead towards our goals. The only constant is change, and it only by being optimistic that we will be able to sustain and win these battles – I know its so much easier said than done, but HEY! Isn’t this the best option….!!!!

 Staying charged in Challenging Times

Recent economic events in the US and Europe have not been encouraging unfortunately. Europe’s response to the sovereign crisis and the events around lifting the US debt ceiling have negatively impacted the financial markets and substantially eroded business and consumer confidence. As we hear more predictions of an economy showing signs of weakening, managers around the country are asking a couple of key questions: Are we prepared to face it once again? Can we take economic and political instability in our stride? Are we Ready to fight one more time… However, believe you me, the ONLY WAY, one wins is by trying …. As Jack Welch had said;

CONTROL YOUR DESTINY OR SOMEBODY ELSE WILL’

I feel the real challenge for Leaders and Managers is to develop strategies aimed at protecting employee motivation, despite the fear and concerns. Too many companies over-hire in good times and quickly look to downsizing as a temporary fix to slowing demand for their services. Though it has long been acknowledged that employees are a company’s most valuable assets, but many are slow to recognize the full impact of these tough decisions on the motivation of employees. A carefully thought out plan can go a long way in being ready to fight the potential economic battles.

According to me, the biggest threat to employee motivation may be a shift in focus to self- preservation rather than team performance. What once was a finely tuned machine may break down as the individual parts become more concerned with whether they can meet their own goals, while failing to recognize that the team’s performance may be their greatest hope for individual survival.

Narayan Murthy and Steve Jobs   

Narayan Murthy and Steve Jobs served as the CEOs of their respective companies and have now stepped down, passing the baton smoothly. Mr. Murthy served as the CEO of Infosys for 21 years and was succeeded by co-founder Nandan Nilekani in 2002. Steve Jobs served as Apple’s CEO from 1997 until 2011 naming Tim Cook as the next CEO of Apple.

Steve Jobs had serious health issues but has fought and won, fought and won and given the world legendary products – IPod, Iphone, IPad….from a marketing point of view, no one asked for these products, but just imagine the impact they have had on our daily lives… a huge example of the inherent spirit of a man to fight and win thus creating an immense impact in others lives.

Both the leaders have had one thing in common – Innovation, Creating Value for Organization and Shareholders, Living the Values and being modern day leadership role models. Amongst all the teachings they provided to us, the invaluable one is the fundamental fact —- their ability to fight….

Some of the common lessons for all of us in their words are :        

 

Narayan Murthy

Steve Jobs

“Invest in Learning”

“Learn continually”

“Do it First and Do it Right”

“Living with value”

“Think Big. Don’t Hesitate to Start Small”

“Start small, think big”

“Share with others”

“Learn from Failures”

 The corporate world would be different without their active involvement.

Failures Or World Champions?

“Overconfidence precedes carelessness.”

Any Indian would happily replay the moment in their minds, it was such a glorious and perfect moment  when Indian cricket team created history after 28 years by winning the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 title. Under coach Gary Kirsten and with MS Dhoni as captain with an  excellent balance of youth and experience, they’d worked long and hard to reach the pinnacle of world cricket. Then came the test series against England.  After having reached the pinnacle of cricket India had it all along with an aura as a new generation of invincible cricketers  but  alas! India was well and truly beaten by an upbeat and innovative England team who was better balanced, mentally tougher and a lot hungrier for victory. The poor performance by our World Champions continued in T20 and ODI series as well – No wins so far.  Could this be called overconfidence of success or is it failure of adapting to the new conditions… whatever it is, as a sports lover … the lesson learnt is..

 

For aofessional, there is no finishing line.

India – Supporting Anna against Corruption

The agitation of Anna Hazare started in the interest of the people of India, to remove the deep rooted corruption in the nation.  Anti-corruption crusader Anna Hazare ended his 12-day fast on the Lokpal issue, before thousands of cheering supporters at Ramlila Maidan after being triumphant at securing Parliament’s approval on key elements of the Jan Lokpal Bill. Anna made the movement a great success by making it a movement of the masses. Of course the fight still continues….

  

  Dreams come True

Life for these two girls – Karishma Randhave (17) of Shirval in Pune district and Anjani Lahane (18) of Mangaon in Raigad district might never be the same again. One born into a labourer’s family while another is from a farmer’s family, have been selected for the Global Opportunity scholarship of Rs 67.5 lakh each by the University of Cincinnati (UC). This is for the first time that this scholarship will take care of complete education of the two girls, including their boarding, lodging and air travel. Hailing from low income families, they had never thought they would go outside India to pursue their dreams. While Karishma will pursue a course in bio-medical engineering, Anjani has opted for computer engineering. The initiative is being carried out in partnership with NGO Lend a Hand India (LAHI), which works in the education sector in rural India.

Aravind Eye Hospital, Madurai : In Service for Sight

Starting as a modest 20-bed hospital, Aravind has grown into a 1,400-bed hospital with various branches. It has screened 3.65 million patients and performed 335,000 cataract surgeries, nearly 70% of them free of cost for the poorest of India’s blind population. Over the years, this organization has evolved into a sophisticated system dedicated to compassionate service for sight. Talking about its business model, the central principle, that success is fundamentally related to demand makes it a profitable business proposition (if they are not profitable, the benefits to the really needy ones may stop). Volume brings down the cost and ensures the sustainability of the enterprise which in turn is ensured by the combination of low cost, high quality and efficient procedures, as well as the appropriate use of technology. Aravind Eye Hospitals try to maintain a ratio of 1:2 between paying and free patients, which keeps the enterprise financially viable. The Aravind Eye Care System now serves as a model, for India, and the rest of the world.  Aravind’s founder, Dr. Venkata Swamy, now 74 years old, has a goal to spread the Aravind model to every nook and corner of India, Asia, and Africa.  

Their Mission – To fight and prevent blindness

                                                 Quick Flashes

India wins the Asia Cup in Hockey:  Crown comes for the Indian Hockey team as they defeated the arch rivals Pakistan 4-2 to win the Asian Hockey Tournament in China. The victorious Indian Hockey Team received a rousing welcome when it returned home after claiming the inaugural Asians Champions Trophy in Ordos, China.

IBM, Vodafone ink $1 billion IT outsourcing contract :IBM, the world’s largest tech services company, has renegotiated its outsourcing contract with Vodafone Essar and signed a deal estimated at around $1 billion to manage IT systems for the country’s third-biggest phone firm till 2017.

Indian IT companies may get  affected  as America wants its jobs back  : Some American corporations are rethinking the strategy of outsourcing more than half of its IT work from TCS, Infosys, Mind Tree, HCL and other IT companies, mindful of the record unemployment levels and the concerns r among locals who see work being shipped overseas.

Indian millionaires to see wealth grow by 405% by 2020:Among emerging markets in 2020, India is likely to have the highest per capita wealth among millionaires with $4.25 million — placing it ahead of the US, said a report from Deloitte  Center for Financial Services.

India to be $5.6 trillion economy by 2020:  India will become a $5.6 trillion economy by 2020, according to research firm Dun & Bradstreet, which has predicted a three-fold jump in the country’s GDP from $1.7 trillion last fiscal on the back of rapid investment and growing consumer expenditure. 

US President Barack Obama laid out a $447 billion jobs package of tax cuts and government. With 9.1 percent unemployment, Obama said in a high-stakes address to Congress the United States was facing a “national crisis” and called for urgent action on sweeping proposals to revive the stalled economy and avert another recession.

Industrial growth slows to 3.3%: Industrial output in July grew at its slowest pace in nearly two years as the manufacturing sector growth moderated due to the impact of high interest rates, mounting pressure on RBI to pause in its rate tightening cycle. Data released by the statistics office shows, industrial output grew 3.3% in July, slower than the 9.9% growth in the same month a year ago. On a cumulative basis, industrial output grew 5.8% in April-July. RBI has raised interest rates 11 times since March 2010 to tame inflation.

The Redwood Edge Strokes

Last quarter has indeed been a very eventful one at The Redwood Edge. I have had some wonderful experiences of training across India spanning Goa, Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Calcutta, and Hyderabad as well as a session in Kathmandu. The main focus of the organizations was in conducting Leadership, Sales and Motivational Workshops for team members across all levels.

I had the privilege of being awarded the ‘Rajiv Gandhi Shiromani Award’ in the category of ‘Outstanding Individual Achievements & Distinguished Services to the Nation’ from the Citizens Integration Peace Society in New Delhi on Friday 19th August 2011. The coveted award was conferred upon me on the eve of the 67th Birth Anniversary of Late Shri Rajiv Gandhi at a National Symposium on ‘Rajiv’s Role in Promoting National Integration’ by the Chief Guest His Excellency Shri Shekhar Dutt, Governor of Chhattisgarh.

My team and I would like to thank each one of you for your wishes, goodwill and support   in making it possible.

We are pleased to announce the launch of a new initiative. In response to requests from executives across companies, we are introducing a mentorship program titled “Executive Coaching” for the senior management to understand, identify and analyze their potential and  take them to the next level of effectiveness .With a wide  range of tools , we  intend to provide  insights and awareness needed to create a meaningful Personal Development Plan with measurable goals.

We are also offerring Career Counseling and One on One Coaching as the next step for individuals who are ready to take the big leap in the corporate world. Career Counseling aims at helping candidates get into a career that is suited to their aptitude, personality, interest and skills. We follow the process of making an effective correlation between the internal psychology of an individual with the factors of employability and performance. One on One coaching quintessentially comprises of enhancing and grooming one’s outer and inner self to bring about a positive charge to one’s life, inculcated through personalized interaction. The program is meant for aspiring youngsters as well as new entrants into the corporate life and aims at partnering with them in shaping their careers.

We look forward to your support for this initiative and our continued relationship.

I hope you enjoyed reading the 7th News letter edition and  I  look forward to receiving your comments at:  prakash@redwoodedge.com

Keep up the good spirits ….

The fight is on and we know …FLIGHT and FRIGHT will LOSE and each one of us will FIGHT and keep Winning

Cheers,

The Right Impression

Prakash Rohera, director of Redwood Edge, an internationally acclaimed motivational speaker and recent winner of the prestigious Rajiv Gandhi Shiromani Award from the Citizen Integration Peace Society in New Delhi, gives tips on how to face interviews with confidence:

  • The most important aspects is clarify. The students should be clear about their career aspirations.
  • Secondly, presentation scores high with interviewers. Students should know their content perfectly.
  • Also, keep yourself updated about current affairs and general knowledge.
  • Always sound and look relaxed while facing the interviewers. Try to keep the interview conversational and give it your best shot.
  • For an interviewee, the two most important qualities are honesty and transparency. When I say honesty, I do not just mean the body language. You have to be honest with your knowledge too. Do not pretend that you know everything under the sky because it’s not humanly possible. If you do not have answer to a few questions, just let the person know and this will be appreciated. Be transparent and show your true personality. Do not get bogged down by peer pressure.

 

Do you think introducing personality development programmes in colleges will really help?

Yes, they will. These programmes infuse a little more confidence in a person. It’s all a part of developing  process. We must remember that when facing someone in an interview, it’s a mix of attitude and aptitude. Treat these programmes as value addition to your life. If they are unable to do so, then there is no point in attending such programmes.

 

What you have to say about the youth today?

The positive attributes in youngster today are that they are aware about self and the environment; they are confident as well as independent. However they also are restless, short term goal oriented and impatient, which shows in their body language.

Redwoodedge Newsletter

 Dear Friends,

   Greetings!
It gives me tremendous pleasure to write to you and share the happenings around with all of you with our 6th Edition of The Redwood Edge   Newsletter.

At times I wonder, “What does it take to shake off pessimism and embrace optimism?”  What makes people work harder and “Reach Higher”?  It’s not just a simple switch of personality but a sustained concerted approach that facilitates the transformation… slowly but surely we start witnessing a change…a change so profound that it leads us to the next level…..we start believing in ourselves and the environment..we move away from being just Dreaming to Executing … We embark on a new journey to Reach Higher..

This article is a tribute to each one of us who has in some form or the other fought, endured and finally conquered to REACH HIGHER.

As Mark Twain had said… For every Failure there are thousand excuses, but never a good Reason!  
When it comes to leading everyday lives, we often try to keep pace with changing times by doing something different .We try and surpass    our abilities to reach the best. We look at scaling new heights and “Reaching Higher”. It’s our conscience that brings about this    realization. When we are inspired that’s when we dream big and when we dream big that’s when victory carves its way.

 After 28 years the World Cup is ours again!

                 “Success happens when Preparation meets Opportunity”

And what would be the prime example other than M.S. Dhoni’s winning six and India creating history after 28 years. Sachin Tendulkar was carried like a triumphant king as India’s World Cup winners dedicated victory to their country’s cricketing icon. Team-mate Virat Kohli admitted: “Sachin has carried the burden of a nation for 21 years, so it was time for us to carry him.” An emotional Tendulkar finally earned the trophy and said: “I couldn’t have asked for anything better than this. I was not able to control my tears, but they were happy tears so I don’t mind crying. To be a part of this team is a great honour.” “Expect victory and you make victory”. His 21-year long career can be readily referred to for excellence in Leadership and Self –Management.

 Today, the world cup stands as a tribute to all of us for Reaching Higher. The magic that Dhoni’s winning six created will remain one of     the most cherished moments for all of us.

 

  Things to learn from Japan

The 23-foot tsunami and a 9.0 Richter scale magnitude earthquake that hit Japan, its shockwaves still linger in the minds of people. With    shores washed away, thousands of lives lost, and billions of dollars destruction, the Japanese and the economy are being tested.

Five critical words define Japan. CALMNESS, DIGNITY, ABILITY, SACRIFICE and DISCIPLINE.

The Calmness that not a single visual of wild grief is seen, seems like sorrow itself has been elevated to a different level. The Dignity that there were queues for essentials and no rough words or crude gestures. The Ability that Japanese infrastructure remained intact by and large with the engineering expertise and world class technology. The Sacrifice that workers stayed at the nuclear reactors for pumping sea water without thinking about personal safety and the Discipline that from a child to an adult everyone was well aware of their duties and expectations. Citizens make a country and I am sure as our fellow world citizens our hearts go out to them and we believe that Japanese will fight the odds and “Reach Higher”.

  Social Change begins!

Anna Hazare, a social reformer has just won a major victory for the citizens of India, reeling under season upon season of scams of all shades and hues. Coming on the back of the cricket World Cup victory, suddenly April 2011 looked like a month of great hope. Millions cheered MS Dhoni’s winning Shot and millions cheered Anna’s crusade against corruption. Whether it becomes a movement and whether the Lokpal Bill takes shape has to been, like Neil Armstrong had said while landing on the moon – “ONE SMALL STEP FOR MAN, BUT A GIANT

   Leadership and Market

Times have completely changed. In my belief, when you look for growth, you require simplicity, you require speed and for that we need to make sure that we have a structure that’s simple to understand.

Companies are witnessing total re-shuffling of top management… Primary examples being Wipro and Infosys….. with “an outsider” Mr. KV Kamath as Chairman and Mr. Shibulal as the next CEO….. while at TATAs the succession search is on. Transparency and Market Empowerment are the two primary challenges for Leadership. The economic environment is changing and that is really at the heart of this change. No structure on top is permanent and it has to change and adapt to changing business context.  Leadership is the crux of any organization or business and it provides business continuity.

Toyota, plagued by Japan Crisis and cars being recalled, may have to give up its top position to GM and Volkswagen … such is the dynamism of the market. To think Toyota became number one only a couple of years back…..   

  Quick Flashes

India – A VIP Destination: India now features on VIP destination list. Warren Buffett quoted during his visit to India that “India offers all kinds of opportunities and that India has not only been working hard but also smart”. India is on a dream run and one of favoured places by VIP’s.
   India influential in Time 100:  Five Indians figure in the top 100 influential people in the world. M.S. Dhoni secures top notch above    Mukesh Ambani, Azim Premji, V.S. Ramchandran and Aruna Roy.

Ground Reality: Economic Survey 2011 reveals India has showed robust growth and steady fiscal consolidation. It is a hallmark of Indian economy due to impressive economic growth in the farm sector. Country’s GDP has been worked out at 8.6 per cent in 2010-11.

 Some of the highlights of the reports were as follows:

 

  1.   Agriculture growth in 2010-11 has been estimated at 5.4 per cent.
  2.   Food grain production for the current year is 232.07 million tonnes.

Dedicated Freight Corridor: The Rs 77,000 crore Dedicated Freight Corridor project, scheduled to be built by 2016/17, is expected to ease infrastructure bottlenecks and boost industrial development and international trade as existing railway lines in these regions are running up to 50% more than the designed capacity.

Sports brands and Social Media: It is an era of “Social Media Optimization”. India’s most prominent brands have jumped on the social media bandwagon more aggressively. 2011 Cricket World Cup was called as the first ever “Social World Cup”. Nike India’s “Bleed Blue” campaign saw over 10 million `handprints’, with over 1 million coming from Facebook.  The excitement of Social Media continues with DLF IPL 2011.

  Challenges ahead for Training Corporate India 2011

I guess the focus would be on creating new benchmarks in terms of both delivery and more critically in Post Training Implementation. Innovation and Creativity, Market and Business Alignment, Value Creation and Training Leadership would be the key focus areas going forward and something that will never go out of vogue is to be able to create Universal Connectivity with the audience at both the Heart and the Mind level. More and more organizations and participants would seek specific inputs and feedback on the individuals in the training room… what would exactly work for each employee. And I firmly believe that the Trainer’s Fraternity would have to be ready with solutions.

 

  The Redwood Edge Strokes – 2010- 11

 

Year 2010 was indeed a very eventful one at The Redwood Edge. We have had some wonderful experiences of training across India and outside in Singapore, Dubai, Bahrain, London, Istanbul, Vietnam, etc at various levels. The main focus of the organizations was in conducting Leadership and Motivational Workshops for senior team members. We have enriched our client base with new Clients tie-ups namely ,  YES Bank  , Karur Vysya Bank, GE Energy , VE Commercial Vehicles, India Medtronic, MTS, CAMS, Mahindra 2 – Wheelers,  Finolex Cables, Anandabazar Patrika,  Intelenet Global Services etc.

I had the privilege of being awarded the “International Achiever’s Award” for Excellence in Education by the Indian Achiever’s Forum, 2010. 

My team and I would like to thank each one of you for your contribution in making it possible.

We are pleased to announce the launch of a new initiative. In response to requests from young executives, we are introducing an open workshop titled “Success Here I Come”. The workshop is meant for aspiring youngsters as well as new entrants into the corporate life and aims at developing their personality to face the challenges of the competitive world.
We look forward to your support for this initiative and our continued relationship.

I hope you enjoyed reading the 6th News letter edition and we look forward to receiving your comments at:  prakash@redwoodedge.com.

Keep up the good spirits …. Until we meet again with our Next Edition.

  Cheers!!!!!!