Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Failures – Accept, Learn and Move On

As a college going kid, I used to watch many martial arts movies, mostly made in Hong Kong and dubbed in English. One common character in these movies was a Master (Sensei) who would throw rocks of wisdom at every opportunity. I remember from one of them…”It’s not the man who can hit the hardest, but the man who can take the hardest punch who will come out winner every time”.

How true. When we fight, we must have the ability to handle a punch, a hard punch at that…in order to be in the fight and finish it our way.

Accept it, if you are in a fight, you are going to get punched....
If you are in traffic, you will get stuck....
If you can run, you can fall...

In our work life, we always aim for a success, but face it, some failures are bound to happen. These could be small or large. But our approach to the failures will decide the outcome of the project. Can we take it and turn things around?

Every failure will bring it’s own learnings. That’s why champions never quit when down. How many times have we seen Roger Federer fight from two sets down, or winning a set when trailing 1-4. There’s an inherent belief, that he can overcome the challenge, and being a few games down or a set under, can change if he continues to work at it. Of course, the game plan changes, he may attack the net a little more or prolong the rallies..

Failure, Problem, Issue or an unexpected undesirable event or outcome will happen, sooner or later…and by Murphy’s law, it may happen at the worst time of the project. We can do a much better job of overcoming or getting around the problems, if we accept them first. Develop an understanding and figure a strategy to work, and Move

We can always find a solution, or find people who can find the solution. Or it’ll be a new thing…hence opportunity to innovate!

Either way, you come out a winner.

What differentiates you from the crowd is your ability to execute a difficult project, since easy ones can be executed by anyone.

So prepare yourself for failures, expect them as much as you expect success…and as Sensei in the Kung Fu movie said, you’ll win the match.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Just Ask...It's not so Difficult

It is amazing how many questions go “un-asked”.... and every now and then we have a moment, when we look at somebody and say “I wish you had asked that before”.

Many of us have an endearing memory of admiring the girl next door, but never “Asking”…it makes for excellent drama for sure. Always charming...but perhaps it should be left that way!

I can’t remember where I read this, but easiest way of getting a discount is to “Just ask”. We all love discounts, but for some reason or the other, we shy away from asking for it…perhaps we don’t want ourselves to look cheap…or the value of discount looks trivial. But it must be the easiest way to have more of your own money in your wallet, …just ask for it.

Go to a store, and see keenly scanning the isles, with commando like eye movements...looking for that particular product... we may actually walk around, looking for it, sometimes even pass by the salesperson (often wearing, 'May i help you' T Shirt) , but not Ask. Of course, in the process we loose time and delay the acquisition of our favorite cereal that day.

Men not asking for directions, is a well known fact. That’s why Online maps is the greatest gift to the modern man (and to their frustrated family in the car).

At workplace, asking questions is perhaps the easiest and one of the most impacting thing you can do. Asking questions, creates a good dialog, helps in better understanding. It gives you a better chance of reaching a consensus and coming out with an acceptable solution. It may avoid assumptions, which needn’t be made.

My first Manager, had a (rather tacky) chart in his office, which said, “When in Doubt, just ASK”. (I think Archies used to sell it). As a very young programmer, trying to make my boss happy, I, of course, took it verbatim and probably asked one too many questions, but this made sure I understood what was expected when I walked out of his office.

If you are new on the job, you always have the dilemma of whether to ask a question or not, after all there is a lot to catch up on, and perhaps, the question will sound trivial to all others in the forum. It is a legitimate thought, but just for kicks...just give it a try. You may be surprised how many people in the forum did not know the real answer. Alternatively, It is best to note down such questions, and seek answers later on.

For a “Culture of Asking” to prevail, it must be supported by two other behaviors, “Listening” and “Answering” (responding). As individuals we must make a sincere attempt to: First listen, and then respond with complete earnestness, when somebody asks. We must try not shoot-down the question, or respond before understanding the question.

Not Asking leads to assumptions, which can prove costly or cause unnecessary heart burn.

As a Parent do you have the courage and an open enough relationship to ask, if your kid smoked?

Whatever role we play, and whatever be the situation, there are questions waiting to be asked…so don’t assume the worst or the best, please Just's not so difficult.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Think or not

Welcome to my blog...atleast for today, this place will be called 'Think or not'...

Why? because when presented with a question, a choice was made.

Choices are something!

If you don't have's really bad.
If you have too's a problem.

Choices make us think...

Choices have consequences...that makes us think more.

Not making a choice has consequences too...

No escape from choices and no escape for thinking...

Let me know what you Think or not...Welcome again!