Source | LinkedIn : By Srinivasan R
Corporate life can teach you powerful lessons, sometimes quite unexpectedly. All you need, is an open mind. Here are four simple, yet powerful lessons that I learnt while working in corporates.
1. Finding Time For Anything, Is All About Your Priority
Some years ago, while I was working in TCS, we were looking to expand our operations in the Middle East and North Africa. In that connection, I travelled to Morocco to assess the conditions there and explore the feasibility of setting up a Development Center in Casablanca.
I spent a month in Morocco to come up with our value proposition for the country and at the end of the month we requested a meeting with the Moroccan Prime Minister, Mr. Driss Jettou.
The Moroccan Prime Minister gave us a time slot for the meeting at a convention center where a three-day capacity building program had been organized that interestingly the Prime Minister was attending, personally.
During my meeting I asked the Prime Minister “Knowing how busy you are, how do you manage to take so much time out to attend this entire capacity building program?” He responded- “Finding time, is all a matter of priority. For me capacity building is very important. If something is important, you will always find time for it.”
The fact is we all have 24 hours in our day but some people use it effectively to deal with important issues, while others complain about lack of time. If you look at it, we all find time for things that we consider really important!
“Time is a created thing. To say ‘I don’t have time,’ is like saying, ‘I don’t want to.” ―Lao Tzu
2. Don’t Go By What You See Alone
Some years ago I was in Kampala for business. At that time I was working in TCS. I had completed my work and just before leaving, I came across an opportunity for further business in Uganda. Uganda, at that point in time was grappling with a problem of identifying taxpayers and as a result, was losing out on tax revenue, significantly. We had done that work in India and I wanted to share our experience proactively with the tax authorities there.
To get things moving quickly, our local partner advised me to reach out to the highest level in the government. Since the President of Uganda, Mr. Museveni, also presided over the Finance Ministry, I requested a meeting with him. The President graciously agreed to take some time out for us at another location where he was expected to be.
At the appointed time we reached the venue and were told to be seated and that the Ugandan President, would be with us, shortly. In a short while, a gentleman wearing tennis player’s outfit with a tennis racquet in his hand, came to our table. Not recognizing him, I remained seated until our local partner who had already got up to greet him, nudged me.
It was then I realized that he was indeed the President, himself. It was inappropriate on my part not to have got up immediately and greeted him. However, seeing him dressed in a sports gear threw me completely off balance. That was something, totally unexpected. The meeting, however, went of very well.
Appearances can be very deceptive and basing your judgment on what you see, can often be, to your detriment. You form an opinion as soon as you see someone for the first time. That means, what you have based your opinion on, is purely appearance, because that’s all you had to go by at that time. But, your judgment and opinion could well be of the mark.