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Stop ruminating

Stop ruminating

I was recently speaking to a leader, whose business was performing below expectations. The leader kept on rehashing the things that had not worked and the various mistakes that the team had made. Rather than focusing on solving the issue, he was ruminating over the problem. So, what is rumination? Psychology Today defines it as when “you continuously think…

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Ask for favours, the right way

Ask for favours, the right way

Last week, I posted about the importance of doing favours to boost personal happiness and success – as well as to create a culture of generosity at work. This week, my message focuses on something that’s much harder for many of us – asking for favours from other people. How can requesting for help when you need it, strengthen interpersonal bonds?…

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Do yourself a favour by doing favours for others

Do yourself a favour by doing favours for others

Some people think of favours in purely transactional terms: “Why should I go out of my way for someone else, when it’s not part of my job and I’m not getting anything in return?”. What they don’t realise is that the simple act of doing something for someone else is tremendously beneficial. So, this week,…

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Not just time management - how about attention management?
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Not just time management – how about attention management?

Do you feel that your priorities get pushed aside in the daily whirlwind at work? Do your days, weeks, months pass by in a rush of busyness – but somehow you don’t move any closer to your long-term goals? Does your to-do list grow longer and longer, despite “tried-and-tested” productivity techniques and apps? If yes, take…

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Playing favourites at work
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Playing favourites at work (Co-authored by Ryan Mascarenhas)

A colleague recently shared with me how he was told that he was singling out a few people, praising them repeatedly and not spreading the compliments. He was a bit surprised by this because he thought that he was being fair and recognising these team members for good work.  Like it or not, as leaders,…

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Don't let FOBO paralyse you
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Don’t let FOBO paralyse you

Have you ever been to a restaurant and seen someone at the neighbouring table (or it could even be you) examine the menu in exhausting detail, with the waiter patiently waiting to take the order? “There are so many great dishes, I don’t know which one to choose”, you hear the person exclaim.” What if…

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Don't let motivated reasoning distort your decisions
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Don’t let motivated reasoning distort your decisions

In 2016, Oxford Dictionaries’ word of the year was “post-truth” – defined as “denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief”.  The choice is a telling sign of the times. “Fake news” has spread through the world with alarming speed over the last few…

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Overcome negativity
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Overcome negativity

Did you know that a majority of employees waste 10 hours or more per month complaining or listening to complaints about their managers? And one-third spend 20 hours or more! This obviously goes far beyond healthy venting – it means many people spend a considerable portion of their professional life engaged in pointless negativity. Negativity at…

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Challenge the Status Quo
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Challenge the Status Quo

In 1998, Nokia became the best-selling mobile phone brand in the world. In 2007 (the same year Apple launched the iPhone), it boasted a 49.4 per cent share of the smartphone market, was valued at US$ 150 billion, and counted among the world’s top ten brands. Yet, by 2013, its market share had declined to just…

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How anchoring bias affects the way you make decisions

How anchoring bias affects the way you make decisions

Here’s a math problem for you. No calculators – just take a couple of seconds to do it in your head and come up with your best guess. Ready?  Multiply the following numbers: 8 x 7 x 6 x 5 x 4 x 3 x 2 x 1  If you’re like most people, your guess…

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Lead with compassion

Leading with compassion

When you think of successful leadership, what qualities come to mind? Decisive, ambitious, passionate, objective?  It’s not surprising if “compassionate” didn’t occur to you. Compassion is usually classified as a “soft” skill, which makes people think it’s optional. Yet, as growing research shows, compassion is a key requirement for leaders today.  So, this week, my message…

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Avoid the traps of safe thinking
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Avoid the traps of safe thinking

At our Mumbai head office, we have a sign that greets everyone at the entrance – “KEEP SAFE IDEAS OUTSIDE”. To succeed, we need to be bold and agile. However, the further we go into unknown territory, the more we crave stability – because uncertainty makes us uncomfortable and scared of failing.  Leaders are especially prone to…

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