Monday, May 16, 2022

Pune in Summer

 Two years ago before the pandemic we spent lose to a month in Pune. Anjali was growing up and was old enough to understand things and people and has set out making her own relationships - with her grandmother, cousins, uncles and aunts. It was a wonderful time and we decided to spend our summers in Pune since. There's a lot to do in Pune - places to see, walk, hike, trek, eating places, people to meet. Even the trees and the weather (then) was very beautiful.

But then came the pandemic and things changed. We could not come for the next couple of summers and then Shobha's mom passed away. Though we stay in the same house when we visit it is not the same anymore. But this time when Shobha's brother from the US, Satish came visiting, it was an opportunity to meet everyone perhaps one last time in this house.

Milind it was who organised the get together - Shashi maushi and Manik maushi, Milind, Neelima, Gauri, Parth, Maria, Raja, Anu, Meera, Mangala tai, Suhita, Miskil, Khayal, Shobhs, me and Anjali, Satish and so on. It was a fun get together and we all caught up over some good food and conversations.

Monday, May 9, 2022

Akela Gets Spayed

 The issue of Akela getting pregnant and the attendant issues of pups and their separation etc was on our mind and since Akela had adopted us, we decided that the best way was to get her spayed. And so we took her to CanFel where the good doctor (Anjali likes him and he likes Anjali too) said she was not pregnant and we could get her spayed on Tuesday.

Anjali has holidays so she could really take care of Akela pre-op, during op and post op. She is so good with the dog that I really envy the care and love the dogs get from her. Feeding them, loving them, giving medicines, taking care in the hospital and out of it - really good.

Akela has now spent a whole week at home recovering and Anjali took care of her. Now Akela is backto spending time outside from last night. Big job done. Well done Anjali.  

End of Another Year - Arts Management at the University of Hyderabad, 2022

 Last day of the course today. Glad that we had offline classes after two years. The classes sarted slowly but picked up energy along the way. Ended on a good note once again. Thanks everyone - University, Faculty, Students, Staff.

 Some of the exercises we did in class - people skills.

I've asked the students to give some feedback which I will post here when I get it.

Saani Kaayidham - Movie

 2022. Tamil. Interesting movie - lots of violence. Caste angles, upper caste fellows want to teach a lower caste fellow a lesson and do the most horrid things to his family, leaving his wife alive but raped. How she gets her revenge along with her step brother is the rest of the story.

The violence kept me going for some reason. Then you realise we are suckers for this kind of revenge stories any day. They've got that figured out. 

Sunday, May 8, 2022

Interesting Point of View - Fully Subscribe to It

I can't seem to get the link to it but the conversation goes 

- I am not going to leave my kids much because I am going to spend 85% of my earnings on me and my wife. Then the other person says, it's not what you give to them that makes them great but what you give in them that makes them do good and great stuff.

I subscribe to the idea. We can only give them education, life wisdom, values, the wisdom to have a sense of discretion, to understand the world and get along in it. And then, the freedom to pursue their path.

All else is just baggage.

A Poem That Anusree Shared

 Anusree, my student, shared this poem. She's on a journey to improve her language skills and as part of it she is listening to English videos and found this one. She said it was a good motivational poem and though she did not understand all the word she liked it.

I am so happy that she is doing what she is doing and also that she thought she should share it with me. Thank you Anusree.

Play it!

Saturday, May 7, 2022

Canteen Fundas - A Good Leader Should Know How to Follow

 When a leader knows how to obey (or follow), you have a good commander!

E-Canteen Fundas: What has obeying got to do with leading? Everything! This is why...

As an ex-leader or as an ordinary member, fulfill your role fully and help the team perform to its best by giving your inputs

Remember, always | (Pic: Edexlive)

‘Where have you been Rinku?’ asked Rahul. ‘We’ve been waiting for you!’

‘Two of our sports captains, Reena and Parul, have been replaced as per our rotation policy,’ said Rinku. ‘I went to the farewell party.’

‘They were very senior, weren’t they?’ said Rahul. ‘I wonder how they’ll adjust to being led by a junior. It might create ego issues, don’t you think?’

‘Reena has adjusted to being part of the team very well while Parul’s struggling.’

‘I can understand what Parul might be going through,’ said Rahul. ‘I went through the same thing when I was replaced as captain of the basketball team. I found it difficult to be led by my junior. It was an indignity.’

‘How can we handle it, bhaiyya?’ asked Rinku. ‘When someone has worked at a higher level, how can they obey others?’

‘As Greek philosopher, Aristotle says — he who has never learned to obey cannot be a good commander,’ said Rakesh. ‘Reena appears to have been a more secure and better leader than Parul — she knows how to obey, to follow.’

‘What has obeying got to do with leading?’ asked Rahul.

‘Leading is not about throwing your weight around or feeling like you’ve got a higher status than the others,’ said Rakesh. ‘Those are insecure behaviours that do not empower others. Leading is doing what is best for the team. A good leader always keeps the team’s needs ahead of her own and adjusts to her role.’

‘But what about our pride as a leader?’ asked Rahul.

‘It’s not about pride,’ smiled Rakesh. ‘It’s about the team. If the team’s not producing results, or has a rotation policy, the leader must accept and play her role to her best capacity — which includes following the new captain’s vision. Not be a disruptive force. Many cricket captains, including MS Dhoni who’s considered one of the finest captains, have been replaced, and they did a great job as members of the team. The ones who could not follow have had a negative effect on the team and have been removed. There are many cases of prime ministers of countries who chose simple lives and went back to leading productive lives as ordinary citizens. So there’s nothing to feel bad about when dropped as a skipper. It’s about the team, not you.’

‘What should we do with Parul then?’ asked Rinku. ‘What if she continues to sulk and create problems?’

‘It’s an energy issue,’ said Rakesh. ‘Parul’s feeling insecure. It helps if the new captain has a chat with her and makes her feel secure, valued and lets her know that her contribution can be very useful. If she continues to be a negative effect, then do what’s good for the team. All good teams have players who have led before, who focus on their roles and help the team with their experience and perspectives as an ex-leader.’

‘Hmm,’ said Rahul. ‘So, are you saying that a leader who knows how to follow is a better contributor to the team as opposed to someone who has not led previously?’

‘Yes,’ said Rakesh. ‘It benefits the team to have people who have led before and who know how to follow. Simply because they know what a captain wants from his players — 100 per cent involvement and effort. Most leaders’ energies go into motivating team members to give their best. So, when a secure ex-leader becomes part of a team, she gives her 100 per cent, adjusts her role, thinks like the captain, gives inputs without sulking or interfering and does what the captain expects from her without being told. It reduces the captain’s burden and makes it easy for the captain to focus on other issues.’

‘Hmm,’ said Rahul. ‘So, we need a team full of secure ex-captains to get great performances as a team?’

‘In principle, yes,’ laughed Rakesh. ‘But since we cannot get a team full of ex-captains, it makes sense to have everyone ‘feel’ like a leader — including insecure ex-captains like Parul. A secure captain transfers ownership of the team to each and every member and makes them feel as responsible as the captain. That way everyone starts thinking like a captain and gives 100 per cent — even without the title.’

‘How to transfer ownership. bhaiyya?’ asked Rinku. ‘I’d like players on my team to take more ownership.’

‘Simple,’ said Rakesh. ‘Treat them like they ‘own’ the team too. That it’s their responsibility too. The more responsibility you give, the more ownership they take. Let them experience freedom to think, contribute, take decisions. Be there to help and guide, but don’t rush in to sort their issues. Don’t always provide answers but give pointers, ask questions. Let them do their bit for the team in ways that benefit the team. That way we help them grow as secure leaders and get better results as a team. But remember, only a secure leader lets others take ownership — and obeys a new leader.’

‘Interesting,’ said Rahul. ‘When everyone in the team thinks like a leader, like an owner, the team works to its potential.’

‘Yes,’ said Rakesh. ‘Works everywhere — as citizens in the society, as team players, as family members. So, are you thinking like a leader in all your teams, taking ownership for what’s happening around you and helping out the leader?’

‘No, bhaiyya,’ said Rinku shaking her head. ‘But I’ll start today.’

Pro Tip: Think like a leader even when you are not the leader. As an ex-leader or as an ordinary member, fulfill your role fully and help the team perform to its best by giving your inputs and adjusting to what the team needs from you.