Thursday, September 30, 2010

17 things Bob Sutton believes in...

Bob Sutton was my MS&E 280 (Organizational Behavior) professor at Stanford. Probably one of the most enjoyable classes I had, and the final assignment was probably one of my best pieces of fiction (Don’t ask, it was that kind of class).. Bob is also the author of many books on Organizational Behavior, including “The No Asshole Rule”, and his latest “Good Boss, Bad Boss”.

I recently stumbled upon his blog , and while he still has the same (sometimes irritating) boisterousness in his writings as he does in person, it’s also struck a chord somewhere. Would encourage everyone to go there once in a while. Everyone of us, is a boss somewhere, and has a boss somewhere.. So in his honor, I reprint something straight from his blog. I wanted to link to this part alone, but couldnt find someway to do that in the short time that I had. You might find yourself nodding in agreement (or in disagreement), but I have been thinking of writing something on these lines for a while..

17 Things Bob Sutton believes in..

1. Sometimes the best management is no management at all -- first do no harm!

2. Indifference is as important as passion.

3. In organizational life, you can have influence over others or you can have freedom from others, but you can't have both at the same time.

4. Saying smart things and giving smart answers are important. Learning to listen to others and to ask smart questions is more important.

5. You get what you expect from people. This is especially true when it comes to selfish behavior; unvarnished self-interest is a learned social norm, not an unwavering feature of human behavior.

6. Avoid pompous jerks whenever possible. They not only can make you feel bad about yourself, chances are that you will eventually start acting like them.

7. The best test of a person's character is how he or she treats those with less power.

8. Err on the side of optimism and positive energy in all things.

9. It is good to ask yourself, do I have enough? Do you really need more money, power, prestige, or stuff?

10. Anyone can learn to be creative, it just takes a lot of practice and little confidence

11. "Whenever people agree with me I always feel I must be wrong."

12. If you are an expert, seek-out novices or experts in other fields. If you are a novice, seek out experts.

13. Sutton's Law: “If you think that you have a new idea, you are wrong. Someone else probably already had it. This idea isn’t original either; I stole it from someone else”

14. "Am I a success or a failure?" is not a very useful question

15. The world would be a better place if people slept more and took more naps

16. Strive for simplicity and competence, but embrace the confusion and messiness along the way.

17. Jimmy Maloney is right, work is an overrated activity.

NB: Also, would be very interested in knowing how many of these I practice ( or absolutely do not practice).. Maybe in private.. :)

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A Bird Brained Story...

"I don't like to be in a cage, Sir", the bird once said.

"So how can I help you, my dear birdie??" said its owner...

"I don't want to be in a cage any more.. I'm a bird.. I need something else.. I need to fly in the sky, over the mountains and the oceans and the into the sunset.. This one is just so cramped.. I need more space.."

"But the other birds don't seem to be complaining.."

"That's not my problem is it?? I am telling you my problem.. Why can't you solve my problem??"

"Listen to me.. I know what's best for you.. You're just a bird, dear Birdie.. The world outside is tough.. you're not used it.. They'll eat you alive.."

"So, what should I do??" asked the dejected bird..

"You know what, dear Birdie.. Now that I think about it, there's one thing I can do.. And keep in mind, I am only doing it because you are my favourite bird.."

"What's that??" said the excited bird..

"You said you need more space, correct??"


"How about I give you a bigger cage??"

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

The best sentence I have read in a long time..

I PREFER not to reward people for doing crazy, foolish things to get in the news, but the people who run most news outlets disagree with me, probably because the public at large does too. And since the public likes to read news about people who do foolish, crazy things to get in the news, the news is often dominated by people doing crazy, foolish things…
Democracy in America blog in The Economist

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Monika Rigby

I don't know Monika.. Monika isn't even her name any more.. She goes by another name... She married and changed her name to something else.. If you add the total amount of time I have met her, it's probably is about an hour combined.. You could say she's a friend of a friend of a friend... The last I met her was about a year ago for not more than 30 secs at a chance meeting at Dadar Railway Station.. Through the last year though, I have passed her numerous times in traffic..

And each time I see her, for those 30 seconds or more, all I see is loneliness in her eyes..

You probably don't know a "Shahrukh Khan" or a "Sachin Tendulkar".. But there's an Eleanor Rigby everywhere..

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Things I think I think

- Can mostly be found on Facebook..

- But it has been a while, hasn't it?? I think I last wrote this string almost a year ago.. It's not been like I have stopped thinking.. You could say I stopped writing.. But I am now making a concerted effort to start writing again.. There aren't too many things that I think though.. There's no one to blame.. Just me.. I do have ideas that I would like to expand on.. I could possibly write a book like Author Gogoi.. Author Gogoi is coming up with a book, sometime now soon.. Was to be around the Aug. 15th timeline, but it's coming up soon.. Buy a copy.. NOW.. Or rather, hen it comes out..

- But Facebook is indeed a good thing.. Half a Billion people can hardly be wrong.. It felt good to "meet" old friends.. Also felt nice to see most people are doing well.. Felt really good to see my friend Thaminie Perera, doing what she really likes and setting up her own Piano Studio.. If you're in the LA area, and want your kids to play like Bach or Beethoven, get in line to her studio.. Sometimes, when people do what they always wanted to, it makes you feel good... I guess living vicariously is the best some folks can do..

- As I write this, I am also watching Jab We Met.. I don't know why I like the movie.. But I do... What can I say?

- There are days when I think I am creative, and there are days when I think I am as creative as a tortoise.. I don't know how creative tortoises are, but I think not much..

- The more I think of it, the more I regret not running for the elections last time around..

- I think this post is a very bland one, and I apologize in advance.. Think of it like a batsman who's having his first hit in months.. I have even stopped promising that I shall write more often, going forward.. Cannot guarantee..

- A passing thought.. Is Sachin Tendulkar eligible for a pension for being a Air Force Group Captain??