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MBA @ Mother’s Business Academy ….. Mother’s Day Special !!

Mother's DayLong before ‘In Search of Excellence’ and ‘What They Don’t Teach You at Harvard Business School’ became bestsellers. Much before I even knew about management education. A ‘Trustworthy’ practitioner of so many management concepts, as I was to realize later, was just flowing through her daily routine with grace.

This Mother’s Day, I reflect on 10 (in no particular order) Justplainandsimple™ observations about my mother …..

1. ‘Work Life Balance’, as an issue, was unheard of with her. My mother is a retired teacher. She would travel 20 km one way in public transport and still manage all household activities including cooking, ironing, keeping the house clean ….. and teaching me and my brother.

2. Transcending Self and with Immense Inner Strength, she is a Level 5 Leader, (builds enduring greatness through a paradoxical blend of personal humility & professional will ~ Jim Collins) who would put family needs above her own, humbly and quietly.

3. Coaching and People Development come so naturally to her. So while she used to help me and my brother (she was a maths teacher) with our studies, her teachings in personal and professional development have been of immense help in shaping and grooming us. Not only that, her ‘Home Grown People Development’ Style is equally effective while training domestic help.

4. While it may not be the most appropriate usage of the term, she fully understands our needs and emotions as (internal) customers and offers solutions and customer experiences unmatched anywhere in the world.

5. With a soft heart, she can take ‘Tough Decisions’ for the good of the family, with equal ease.

6. There is never any task where she does not demonstrate evidence of ‘Execution Excellence’. Balanced meals for the family, arriving at her school on time, keeping the house spick and span, making sure all our requirements, be it school uniform, books etc. were fully met, ensuring 100% results of her students ….. everything achieved with clockwork precision, without an ‘Outlook calendar’.

7. She demonstrated Continuous Learning and Evolution. During her working life, alongwith her busy schedule, she completed two M.A. and one M.Com degrees. Where else could I gain such learnings !? As for our studies she taught us the importance of Practice, Practice, Practice …..

8. We were continually encouraged to have a Big Vision. Her faith and continuous encouragement always made me think (as, I guess all mothers do and believe) that I was the Best in The World ….. !!

9. With both parents working, we had a comfortable childhood financially. But still, managing finances and living according to family income was a challenge, especially till about two decades ago, which she managed with great elan.

10. Last, but not the least, she practiced and then preached the Values of Integrity, Ethics, Discipline, Humility, Empathy, Respect for All and above all ….. Faith in God !!

Maa Tujhe Salaam !! Salute You Mother !! Happy Mother’s Day …..

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Strategy, Communication and Values : Alignment in Execution

Wheel AlignmentJust as your car runs more smoothly and requires less energy to go faster and farther when the wheels are in perfect alignment, you perform better when your thoughts, feelings, emotions, goals, and values are in balance. 

 

I used to own a relatively premium brand of car. Good branding and technology focus !! However, fewer service centers (a function of numbers I thought) made access inconvenient. I finally switched due to the company’s apathetic approach to after sales service.

So I settled in for a ‘less’ premium brand. My Justplainandsimple™ decision was based on the company’s strong communication on ‘Customer Orientation’, ‘Trust’ and the assurance of a huge service network. The experience of regular initial free service, with pick ups and drops by the very ‘competent’ service centre, was quite satisfying, I must say. Continue reading

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