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Archive for the ‘Book Review’ Category

Last weekend I completed reading “A Thousand Splendid Suns” by Khaled Hosseini. To say the least the book is a masterpiece. It takes you on a journey across the unforgiving political social and religious, landscape of Afghanistan bloodied by the Mujahideen and the Taliban. To be honest, this is the first book that I read in three days flat and towards the end of the story all i had was tears and a great sense of compassion for the struggle of the Afghan people. I recommend this book as a must read for all !!

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Dear Reader,

Your truly attended a 2 day course on “Negotiation Skills”. I must tell you folks that I approached the training with some suspicion of what good it would bring, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that I had completed the most fascinating training experience in the last 5 years.

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The trainer Mr. M Gopakumar in particular had a wealth of knowledge to share with us and more interestingly he had just the right proportion of role plays, team games, exercises and presentations etc. I mean overall I can safely say that I am definitely going to make a sincere attempt at negotiating better with the goal at clinching Win- Win deals. To tell you the truth I already tried it once and the result was just spectacular. I am now planning to read the book “Getting Past No“.

All of us negotiate at different times with different people be it family members, team mates at work, bosses, sellers etc. Who ever be on the other side of the table Negotiation has some basic principles and these are simple commonsense things which we overlook. It was interesting to know that in every negotiation a huge 83% of the time is spent in doing “home work”, 10% of the time is the face to face talk and 7% is spent post the deal is struck.

I recommend each and every one of you who is serious about improving your relationship with the people around you to undergo this training. It is an eye-opener and a wonderful starting point in your journey towards being a Win – Win negotiator.

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I was just reading an article from HBR( Harvard Business Review ) that immediately struck a few chords of agreement within me. The article* is titled “In Praise of the Incomplete Leader”. The writing is centered around the fact that there is no one such as a complete leader. According to the author there are four capabilities of leadership.the first two are the enabling capabilities of leadership and the remaining two are the creative and action oriented leadership capabilities.
1. Sensemaking (Making sense of the world around you in simple terms, understanding people and processes)
2. Relating (Connecting with people and networking)
3. Visioning (putting forth a compelling vision that will inspire everyone)and
4. Inventing (ways of overcoming a previously insurmountable obstacle, or doing things differently)
The author argues that no leader is perfect in all the four capabilities , everyone has his / her strong areas and the strength in the other areas come from other people in the organization, leadership is effective when it is distributed across the board.
*access to the article is subscription based.


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Tuesdays with Morrie

Tuesdays with Morrie One of those books that makes a profound impact on your life and the way you think. An invitation to introspect more into what life actually means by looking at the most dreaded aspect of life for most of us – Death.

The Book is a memoir of the “Tuesday Classes” Mitch Albom attended with his old professor, Morrie Schwartz. The central theme of the book is perhaps as effort to study and understand human relationships. That’s what touched me the most. In particular I appreciate the manner in which the most significant teachings in life have been brought out to the fore. I always like books that force me to think and the teachings from this one just linger on in my mind and force me to recalculate the parameters that drive my life.

I reproduce here some lines from the book that are most thought provoking.

1. “Once you learn how to die, you learn how to live.”

2. “Each night, when I go to sleep, I die. And the next morning, when i wake up , I am reborn” (Mahatma Gandhi)

3.”I’ve learned this much about marriage,” he said now.”You get tested . You find out who you are, who the other person is , and how you accommodate or don’t”

I think each one of us must read this book at least once. Try it. I can guarantee that you will experience a positive shift in your attitude towards others and life in general. Before I sign off, Thanks R for recommending the book to me.

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