Inner Sun

Stolen InSights

Stolen InSIghts

Anecdote, Learning and Application-ALA

She wasn’t asking or saying much at one of the many workshops I was running on Corporate Storytelling across India. Though the program was generic in design, and was targeted towards organizational development consultants, employee engagement enhancers and brand builders, the room that day had quite a few attendees from the financial industry. They were in the room to take away lessons on how to use storytelling for increasing sales.

As a facilitator I’d stirred up the room with philosophies, principles and practices to source, structure and serve all kinds of stories.

Anecdote, Learning and Application

Anecdote, Learning and Application

To the sales-minded people in the room, I offered ALA-Anecdote, Learning and Application/Action as a framework to use for using stories and storytelling for sales.

Arzoo, as she was called, was a content writer for one of the largest event management companies in India hesitantly stood up to take a shot at the storytelling model for driving sales. Now, most all of the times it is the learning facilitator that finds fulfilment when participants absorb, accept and apply ideas shared in class but, this time, I must confess I was bowled over with Arzoo’s touch of class and creativity in using the format ALA.

She began by talking about how elegant, suave and brilliant Audi the car was and how over the years it had evolved and adapted itself to changing times and technologies. She then went on by saying that when she wrote, she thought of Audi as a living, talking and a thinking person. And how, as when she did that, the content that she created for Audi and her clients was usually beyond brilliant and most always picked up a lot of brand traction.  After she had done that, she slowly slid into how creative content writers immerse themselves into the persona of a product or a process and then personify it. Give it a human touch, they do, she said. She eventually transitioned into how most brands and businesses can benefit from good content creation.

It was a pitch, yes but, boy was it the classiest one I’d ever heard. The anecdotal part was more like a little chat about a car with a personality; the learning part was more like a realization on the part of a content writer and the call to action absolutely subtle and sublime. The whole delivery had zero hard edges to it and none of the sides were coarse but the traction the performance got was phenomenal.

My thrust in all I do and say about storytelling is that our approaches, our proposals must be structured and served such that they may be smoother than and sweeter than any smoothest and the sweetest of wines our client-partners may have ever had. At the end of conversations with our clients as and when they do acquire our services they must walk away with the feeling that they were not “sold to,” but it was them who struck a deal of a lifetime. Happy, for ever after they should be about the whole interaction.

Drawn from my book, the HeART of STORY, I still have one more open to public workshop in Bangalore on Corporate Storytelling on December 07, 2016. Catch me if you can. I shall be more than pleased to have you there.

 

Here’s what Ms. Arzoo Singh of SaltXP Events and others had to say about the workshop:

“It was very engaging and has surely added to my skills.” Arzoo Singh, Salt XP Events, India.

“It was fine with good learnings…looking forward to more like this.”  Devrath Singh Raghav, Birla Sun Life, India.

A very good session!” Karan Khanna, New Delhi

Amazing session! Great learning and practical, doable, valuable inputs from Raju Mandhyan.” Swapnil Parlikar, Mumbai, India.

Anchored In Love

Of the hundreds of times that I have discussed values in a class, a workshop or a smaller interaction every single of those discussions, and declarations of values boil down to one single value-love; love in its most generic and agape form.  For example honestly boiled down to the love for truth, independence to freedom, honor to self-identity and pride.

There was this one moment in my class when sitting across a couple I heard the husband espouse “commitment” to work as his core value while the wife, testily, declared family as her chief value. When I drilled the husband through his choice he went from claiming fulfilling his commitments would gain him credit, gaining credit at the workplace would earn him promotions and growth thereby he’d be able to improve the quality of his own life and that of his family. When the wife heard him end with family as his last word her jaw dropped and tears of love and forgiveness filled her eyes. What, thus, kept both going and driven in their lives was still love.

Called by different names with slightly different application like empathy, sympathy, passion, compassion, “malasakit,” kindness and respect it all really boils to the fact that at the bottom of it, at the core of everything that drives us and makes us strive for growth is love. Success in business is usually a powerful driven by the love of creating value. Taking up the helm of leadership lays the love for others, for a community or a country.

Courage isn’t just a lack of fear; it is the love for what lies beyond that fear.

When we settle down, accept and acknowledge this fact of humanity, on being humane then most everything we think, say or do will become a process we have to follow or journey we need to traverse. Thus, whenever faced with a daunting challenge at work, a tough and a demanding relationship or a mean mountain blocking your path know, appreciate and anchor yourself into the personal value that calls upon you to face that challenge, work that relationship or move that mountain. Anchoring into that value will uncover the love for the outcome and you shall become invincible and unstoppable. Like courage will not just be a lack of fear; but will be love for what lies beyond that fear.

 

P.S. Didn’t realize until I began to post that there is an upcoming event called Anchored In Love featuring Bethany Hamilton on whose life the movie, Soul Surfer, was made.   Here’s the link to the event if you are interested   http://www.loveanchored.com/

I hope they don’t mind me sticking their image here into my blog:

My upcoming public workshops:http://www.informa-mea.com/hrsummit

Advanced Selling Skills in Vietnam: http://www.hospitalmanagementasia.com/cacnhadienthuyet?page=5

Appreciative Leadership in Vietnam: http://www.vmi.edu.vn/news/pid/49/search/page/1/id/4544

InSpire Like a CEO: http://www.genesistrainingevents.com/Raju/inspire.html

Appreciative Leadership: http://www.genesistrainingevents.com/Raju/AL.html

Corporate Storytelling in Dubai:

 

Posts on Facebook: https://goo.gl/MXQEqU

Talks on You Tube: https://goo.gl/dVclfm

Choice Clips from the TV Show, ExPat InSights :  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjf3sHaZBSo

 

 

 

Continual Christmas Leadership

Any business organization, like a tree, when it begins to die it begins to die from the top. It doesn’t matter whether they are giant multinationals or small startups but their lifespan and their social impact last only as long as their leaders learn to walk the line straight and walk it with persistence and vision. Most important of the three elements is their abilities to walk the line straight especially where their “people” dealings are concerned.

Do they treat and grow their people right? Do they serve their customers beyond their own self and do they stay accountable to the state-which too, is made up of people. A robust and successful business is driven by integrity and the integrity of an organization is made up of the character of its leaders.

Continual Christmas Leadership

Continual Christmas Leadership

Thus, if you are hiring and placing someone to sit atop your organization and manage things then check and look if they are made of stuff ethical and accountable leaders are made of. And, if you are running your own business than promise your-self to walk the path of integrity though good times as well as tough because the strength and the spirit of any organization germinates from the top and feeds it’s heart.

Here’s what Benjamin Franklin had to say about “Let no pleasure tempt thee, no profit allure thee, no persuasion move thee, to do anything which thou knowest to be evil; so shalt thou always live jollity; for a good conscience is a continual Christmas.”

 

My upcoming open to public events:

11/17/15 Communicating and Leading Across Cultures in Dubai : http://goo.gl/ajjp2l

12/14/15 Inspire Like a CEO in Mumbai http://www.genesistrainingevents.com/inspire.html

12/21/15 Appreciative Leadership in Bangalore  http://www.genesistrainingevents.com/Workshops/ai-mail.html

Books on Amazon: http://goo.gl/OZSMj8

Posts on Facebook: https://goo.gl/MXQEqU

Talks on You Tube: https://goo.gl/dVclfm

Choice Clips from ExPat InSights :  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vjf3sHaZBSo

the HeART of STORY:Stories, How they Serve Organizations, Part 2

Mention the name of Tata in India and every loyal Indian consumer will raise her chin higher as her eyes light up in approval. For nearly 75 years now, Tata and all its divisions have been serving the Indian nation well.   Yes, they had a difficult start in the troubled times before Indian independence, but they persistently held on, determined to focus on quality and to serve a young and a hungry nation. Over the years, families, employees, and all other stakeholders in the Tata group of companies have each had a story of his own to tell. In the 1960s and 70s, skilled workers would queue up for jobs in the production lines of Tata Motors. Once in, they would consider themselves successfully settled and would stay with Tata for life.  Such was, and still is, the reputation of Tata Group of Companies in India.

Connect, Engage and Influence your World Creatively!

Tata knows this and consistently organizes and aligns itself to the image and expectations that stakeholders look for in this brand.  In the 1990s when the Indian economy picked up momentum and produced a larger middle class, Tata realigned itself to the growing needs of a new nation by providing them with the world’s cheapest and most fuel-efficient car, the Nano.  Today, Tata continues to be ranked the number one brand in India and among the top 50 brand stories of the world. Images, emotions, and relationships in the form of stories have been the drivers behind this magnificent performance and brand from India.

In the Philippines, no matter how many times it is repeated, the story of how Jollibee Hamburgers started off as a little family-owned ice cream parlor always brings a sense of pride.  This success story is wrapped in deep, powerful Filipino values of family cohesiveness, nationalism, and the endeavor to constantly improve and innovate. Embedded in this brand story is the legendary David-and-Goliath plot of how a small, insignificant entity took on a giant, global hamburger chain and brought it to its feet.

Regardless of another global brand’s performance being  a few notches higher in the world stage than that of Jollibee, its “story” as being born of a humble Filipino enterprise that respects and appreciates family and togetherness makes Jollibee  the nation’s best-seller. Jollibee knows this to be the reigning reality. They continuously exert all-out efforts to improve their products, service, and performance not just to elevate quality standards but also because they are motivated by the stories that come with the brand.  They are smart to do so.   It makes good business sense and it makes good developmental sense. Living up to your brand stories is a sensible and a strategic ideal.

 

Drawn from the book, the HeART of STORY on Amazon.

 

Don’t Think of a Pink Elephant in 2015

I am not in the habit of using the word “not” as often as I used to, when setting goals.

The reason is simple. Our triune, naturally positive and highly visual,

Appreciative Feedback

brain does not accept a negative command.

Try, when I say, NOT to think of a Pink Elephant.

Please do not think of a Pink Elephant.

What are you doing? What’s on your mind? A “Pink Elephant,” you say?

Right!

Your visual brain had to first upload a picture of a Pink Elephant and then it made efforts to delete it.

Tough!  Real tough!

So, let’s say you want to NOT be fat this year and you will work at it. What is your brain doing and what will it do during the period you work at NOT being fat? It’ll be holding up a picture of a FAT YOU to motivate you to NOT being FAT.  The whole exercise backfires on you, you become what you visualize-FAT!

So the goal-setting and building good habits in 2015 way is to claim what you want to Be, Do and Have rather than NOT be, NOT do and NOT have.

So, here’s an example goal stated positively. Stated in a way where the picture is consistent, affirmative and in a language of “as if” I am already what I want to Be, Do and Have.

“I AM AN EXACT 175 POUNDs AS I STAND ON MY WEIGHING SCALE ON THE MORNING OF MARCH 31, 2015. “

I can add to that.

It is fine sunny morning. I am in my bedroom. My window is open and I hear the leaves in the garden rustle. My waistline feels flat. My trousers feel loose and light on it and my back muscles are nice and sinewy. I like myself.

With that living, breathing, vivid picture in my mind, I work a plan of;

  1. Eating ONE whole meal of just fish and all green vegetables every day.
  2. Drinking 12 glasses of water every day.
  3. Biking for 30 minutes every day.
  4. Swimming for 30 minutes on every Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
  5. Sleeping for a minimum of 7 hours every night.

After consistently working this Neuro-SMART plan and checking my progress every 15 days,  there I am on the morning of March 31 weighing exactly 175lbs.  I flex the muscles on my back and feel good about them.

Do you see that?

Can you do this for, say “HAVING A MILLION PESOS IN YOUR BDO SAVINGS BANK ACCOUNT ON THE MORNING OF JUNE 30, 2015?”

Of course, you can!

That is easy, peasy, lemon squeezy!

You can see it, smell it and feel it but I did NOT say that did I?

Have a Happy 2015!

Laughing, Talking Sunshine!

“Grandma, why is there no sunshine in your room? Why is it so musty and always dark in here, Grandma?” asked li’l Teresita of her grandmother.

“Well, it’s because the room has no windows, child,” replied the kindly old woman.

“I am going to go and ask Daddy to install some windows right away,” she responded and ran down the spindly stairs towards the living room of their house.

The house they lived in was wedged between several other tall, scrawny structures and the back of the house hung on for dear life to the rocky hills of their little town in the province of Quezon, Philippines.

Her father was sitting on the dining table sifting through bills to pay that kept piling up from month to month. Her mother’s back was towards her and her father. She was busy stirring up some food on that, slightly chilly November morning in the Philippines.

“Daddy, Daddy I want us to place some windows in Grandma’s room upstairs in the attic. It’s too dark and musty there when we play,” she said in an excited and eager voice. Her father did not respond but continued to arrange and re-arrange the papers on the table. Teresita hopped up a chair and held his arm and shook it, “Dad, the room is so dark that we can barely see little shells we use for the Soonka* game we play. Please, Daddy!”

He dropped the papers and the pen he was holding, leaned back into the chair and sucked in some cold air. “Tess, our home is cramped in between other homes and has a rock-face behind, we can’t place a window anywhere in that room.”

“But Daddy, the room is so dark, so musty. Please Daddy place in a window. Grandma will be happy. We’ll be able to play,” she said in a raised voice. Her mother let go of the spatula she was stirring the food with, turned around and a lump formed up in her throat. She knew her mother who’d been their dependent for years now was getting old and they were living through some hard times. Her husband worked hard but he was still unable to bring in enough. “Don’t be such a pest child! Our home faces south. We have no money. There is no way we can place a window in Grandma’s room!” he snapped at his daughter. Teresita’s mother saw her little girl’s face shrink and her eyes water as she got off the chair and ran out of the house sobbing.

Out on the street, the sun was about to set and the country breeze quickly dried up the tears that had run down Teresita’s face. Within moments she got engrossed with the birds, the bees and the flowers that abound in the provinces of the Philippines. The evening sun was kind on her face and as the sun-rays fell on her arms, she smiled warmly, “Why don’t I,” she thought to herself “catch some sunshine and then bring it up to Grandma’s room in the attic?”

Quickly she held up the edges off her long, frilly skirt and faced the sun so the rays fell right into the open, carved out apron front. She held her breath as the apron-front of her skirt filled up with sunshine. She quickly scooped it up, brought the ends together, captured the sunshine in her skirt and ran up to Grandma’s room. “Grandma, Grandma, I brought you something. I brought you sunshine,” she yelled and let drop the apron-front. Nothing happened. She was shocked. “I brought you sunshine Grandma. I really did. I don’t know where it went,” she said as her lips pursed up in pain. “Oh, not to worry,” said her Grandma “come let me tell you a Christmas story.” She grabbed, scooped up the child in her arms and began to tell her a story.Teresita-230x300

The next morning, Teresita was out again playing in the yard. The sun was brighter and richer upon her as she played in the yard. “This time” she said to her-self “I will not fail. I will not spill the sunshine as I run up to Grandma’s room.” She held out the front of her skirt for a longer time. When she felt the heat gather, she wrapped it very tightly and then sprinted into her house and up the shanty stairs to her Grandma’s room and announced, “I brought sunshine. I did. I did!” Yet, when she let drop the apron-front of her skirt there was nothing. Again the grandmother scooped her up in her arms and began to hum her a little love song.

On another day Teresita resolved to win against the disappearing sunshine from her trap. She glued a large piece of a black, plastic sheet to her skirt’s apron-front. She grabbed a few clothe-spins and set out onto the front yard. With her jaws tightened and her lips narrowed, she faced the sun with squinted eyes and held up the plastic-coated, apron-front of her dress for a long while. With a large swing of her hands, she mightily closed and captured the sunshine. Stuck in a few clothespins on the little openings in the wrap and bolted up to her grandmother’s room. Again, when she opened up her huge gift-package for Grandma there was nothing in it. Nothing! Nada!

Tears the size of tennis balls rolled down her cheeks, her shoulders slumped and her knees were about to buckle when the kindly, old Grandmother quickly caught her and sat her on her lap at the bed. “Why can’t I bring you any sunshine, Grandma?” she cried. “Why can’t I make your room a happier and a brighter place, Grandma?”

“Child, sweet child” cried out her grandmother with tears forming up in her old eyes too, “every time you come up here and spend time with me, I become happy. Your sounds, your smiles and your sheer presence, here in my life, make my whole world brilliant. You are my laughing, talking and living sunshine. Yes, you are li’l Teresita. In your presence my spirits light up as if it were Christmas all the time.”

From that day on, the sounds of Teresita and her Grandmother’s happy laughter echo through the little, rolling hills of the Philippines.

 

Story inspired by the book, the HeART of STORY.

High Impact Presentations

Dr Robert Cialdini of “The Psychology of Persuasion,” made some valid and breakthrough points when he laid down his seven laws of persuading others.

We can, in business presentations too, use the science behind these laws. Here’s how it can be done.

Law One, Reciprocity – People tend to return a favor for a favor.

While presenting make sincere efforts to educate your audience a bit. Offer insights into life, offer ways to improve work or, really offer tangible value. This will perk up people and make them trust you and the rest of your proposals.

Presentation Skills by Raju Mandhyan

Presentation Skills by Raju Mandhyan

Law Two, Commitment and Consistency – If people commit, orally or in writing, to an idea or goal, they are more likely to honor that commitment.

While presenting ask several rhetorical and open ended questions to which your audience will respond, speak up and, automatically, commit to their expressions which they authored and thus own.

Also make sure that not only talk but your business is simple, streamlined and quite high on commitment and consistency when it comes to delivering the goodies you are talking about. This is what my book, The HeART of Public Speaking with Mind Mapping is mostly about.

Law Three, Social Proof – People will do things that they see other people are doing.

In presentations, offer true and tested testimonials from well known people or organizations or even cite true examples of successful usage of your products or services by others.

Law Four, Authority – People will tend to be influenced by authorities and celebrities.

If your product or service is certified, recognized by a legit institution or authority, please make a point to cite that fact. This action authenticates all other aspects of your presentation or persuasion.

Law Five, Liking – People are easily persuaded by other people that they like.

Presentation skills teachers and trainers across the world will tell you to dress nicely, groom yourself well, smell good and smile.  I say yes to all that and would like to add that you must also feel nice inside, groom your heart and mind and be happy and loving towards your audience. They will like you and they will give heed to your presentation.

Law Six, Scarcity – Perceived scarcity will generate demand and therefore give power to the one owning title to the things in demand.

Uhh, be a little careful with this one when it comes to business presentations. Today, we live in an abundant world driven by eco-consciousness and ethics. State and express scarcity of products or services only if there is one. Do not create an artificial perception of scarcity. Your audience might end up hating you for life. You need to earn, have and keep their trust. Truly.

Law Seven, Stay Cool – This one is by yours trulyOne thing Dr. Cialdini didn’t talk about and which is very high up for me while making high impact presentations is that one must always stay cool. Stay cool when under pressure. Stay cool when it is hot in the room. Stay cool when things go wrong. Stay cool even when you are royally messing up your business talk. Stay cool because people have the uncanny ability to read real intentions which hide behind external behavior and actions. Yes, stay really cool to make high impact presentations.

Intentions of the Salesperson, Sales Coach and the Organization

Well, here’s the second question? In a sales coaching interaction whose intentions must take priority the salespersons, the sales manager’s or the goals of the whole organization? Do take note that I am, specifically, talking about sales coaching and not any other form of coaching.

This was one of the five questions raised during my last HeART2HeART Sales Coaching Seminar. I already answered the first question as to how long should a coaching intervention last through my article; Coaching, Seventy Times Seven.

Now, back to the question whose intentions must be considered most important?

Read more

Inner Sun

An Unbalanced Life.

Most everyone is focused on living a balanced life. What exactly is a balanced life? Twenty fours divided equally between work, play, family, personal needs and service to the world? Or, is it stress at work, peace at home?