This morning, I woke up and I saw all these posts on internet on International Women’s Day. The theme this year is Inspiring Change and gender equality. I believe this is a bit outdated. We have come a long way – I believe the theme for me is – Being the change. Being Equal.
Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, rightly points out a word used for women – “She is Bossy”. And is also correct that there is no such negative term for men. The point is what is “Being Bossy “- is this a woman who says what’s on her mind, mobilizes the team and gives them instructions to get the job done, is committed to excellence in her work. Then Be Bossy!
For me, I always have more regrets when I have something to say and didn’t say for the fear of not fitting in or complying to the outdated stereotypes. I also take the responsibility on myself to break that stereotype – I can’t wait for anyone or Sheryl to come and help me – I say what I have to say and deal with the negative consequences if any.
Theodore Roosevelt said, “It is not the critic who counts. It is not the man who sits and points out how the doer of deeds could have done things better and how he falls and stumbles.The credit goes to the man in the arena whose face is marred with dust and blood and sweat. But when he’s in the arena, at best he wins, and at worst he loses, but when he fails, when he loses, he does so daring greatly.”
Our daughters and the younger generation need to know the labels in the world mean nothing. We are who we show up as – the choice is being a doer or being a critic. My advise Be the doer. Be the change.
Brene Brown’s TED talk “Listening to Shame” made a profound impact on me. She says , “For women, shame is do it all, do it perfectly and never let them see you sweat. For men, shame is not a bunch of competing, conflicting expectations. Shame is one, do not be perceived as Weak”.
I loved this. Simple and profound. Both genders have issues. Just different.
I think the more we try to separate men and women, the more the world will stay the same. As women, lets be compassionate to our own – you don’t need to be a superwoman, you are perfect just the way you are – bossy or not.
For men, I don’t think they need to be strong all the time. That is also expecting them to be superman. Lets show them it is ok to cry! We can do that – Right Girls ?
Happy International Women’s Day 2014.
A lot of people are nervous about “Change”. In our modern times, we have also loaded this word with an expectation . The expectation is if you need to be in style, you need to change. Don’t be in style – because style in only seasonal. Be Timeless.
Timeless is to be able to look at things that never change. Here are some things that will never change:
- To be a good professional – you need to continue learning. The day you stop learning you become irrelevant.
- To be in business – you need to have a vision. Vision is to see an opportunity in the current situation and then jump on it.
- To be an expert – don’t be afraid to experiment and learn to fail fast. There will be a lot of people who will come to you for your knowledge because they will never know the difference between what works and what doesn’t.
Stay Relevant – Keep Learning – Move Forward – Be Timeless!!!
In any association, there is a transaction of energy, knowledge and emotion. Though we are evolved as human beings, human beings are bunch of animals. We have the tendency to behave like the people we surround ourselves with, we model people around us and even imitate the people who are most powerful of the herd.
I am not making this up. There is scientific research behind this – it is called emotional contagion - A broader definition of the phenomenon was suggested by Schoenewolf: “a process in which a person or group influences the emotions or behavior of another person or group through the conscious or unconscious induction of emotion states and behavioral attitudes”.
Think about ten people you spend most of your time with – Do you spend time with takers? Or those who complain all the time? Or those who are self-centered and self-absorbed, or who are just gossiping , then chances are you will become one.
Surround yourself with those you look up to, whose life you want to live, those who stretch you to play bigger and those who push you achieve your goals.
It is not important to have thousands of associations but only those who add value to your life. Clean out the false associations - play in the club of mastery, excellence and world class performance.
Interestingly, this is the conversation with my some of my friends this weekend. In some strange coincidence or maybe intentionally created scenarios, I found myself discussing this subject. Clearly, this topic has no right answers and is left to interpretation based on our personal experiences – it is a timeless subject. We as human beings, cannot imagine living in a world minus “Love”.
Disclaimer: None of these is my definition. I am still working on it. It is just a collection of responses. Feel free to add your thoughts.
The question: “What is Love?”
Here are some answers:
- There is romantic love and there is other love. The romantic love is what is what is referred to as “Being in Love” and the other love is “Our love for things, places and people”.
- The romantic love is a sense of connection. Most likely, it is when you don’t have to speak and other person gets you. The other love is the your likeness, even responsibility and affinity.
- Love is when you don’t expect a ROI (Return on investment)
- Love is self-directed. It means nothing if the other person loves you more or less. You give out the feeling because you get joy from it.
- Love is passion – Passion (from the Latin verb patī meaning to suffer) is a term applied to a very strong feeling about a person or thing.
- Love is trust and perseverance – you share yourself completely and there are no secrets. It perseveres all travails.
- Love is companionship – best friends forever and best moments with special people and your pets.
- Love is a partnership – you enable each other and are like partners in good and bad.
- Love is like a mirror – everything you hate in yourself is present in the other and you have to learn to live with it.
Your thoughts are welcome. Enjoy your weekend!
There are opportunities and then there is money. And sometimes opportunity is to make money. And sometimes opportunity is bigger than money and hence comes with an opportunity cost. As you look into the future and what are the opportunities for you – the important distinction to remember is Opportunity is not equal to money.
Money is a small part of every opportunity. The main thing you need to seek in an opportunity is the freedom to express yourself and feeling valued for your expression.
This is the bigger than opportunity and money together – what is creates is an ecosystem of harmony. In the end human beings are designed to serve others whether we realize it or not. And they feel most valued when they contribute to making a difference.
When you consider opportunities, consider what impact will you be making with your participation.
Note: Thank you Himanshu Jhamb for thinking with me on this.
As a marketer, I have followed my guru (Seth Godin) religiously through the years. I have read most of his books, met him in-person, invited my community here to learn from him and most importantly I read his blog every single day.
Along with his Marketing insights, what I am fascinated by is his consistency in writing a blog everyday. I am in West coast (California) and every morning when I am wake up, I go to his blog – Voila! his new post is there. Be it Christmas, New Year’s or any other holiday. I am sure there are days when he is traveling, sick or in a bad mood – but the post is there.
His unspoken promise to his readers is always kept. The behavior that I read his blog everyday is because I am never disappointed. And his posts always thought-provoking, innovative and current to the new media landscape.
The real question is – Are we keeping our promise to our clients, community and colleagues – consistently? Are we keeping our moods and situations aside and delivering everyday? Are we bringing new thinking to our work places?
I love when you ask all the successful people the secret of their success – they all say they got lucky. The real story is very different – they deliver consistently.
This is my first post of 2014. And it is perfect time to reflect on 2013. While reflecting is good, it is to be done in the spirit to see how to make the next year better. In essence, the task is meant to move you forward, onwards and beyond.
I found that reflecting, moving on and creating possibilities has an interesting trap that we can find ourselves in. Now, you are thinking – what am I talking about?
So, let me clarify. Many of us are very blessed and are grateful for what we have. Though, while we count our blessings we sub-consciously forget to pay attention to that little voice in our mind that says, “I am dissatisfied with the status quo”. And the confusion starts from there – Aren’t you supposed to be grateful for the status quo?
If you acknowledge that voice, you aren’t being ungrateful – you are listening to what clutter needs to be cleared before you open up for new possibilities and beginnings. Don’t get stuck in anything (be it a relationship, an opportunity, a place) thinking you need to be grateful while it is clear that the time is over for it.
I am a big fan of Albert Einstein. And here is a quote from him, “Life Is Like Riding A Bicycle. To Keep Your Balance , You Must Keep Moving”
Worst of 2013:
For mobile marketers, distribution and discovery continue to be a challenge. The distribution and discovery gets harder even though we have more ad networks and attribution sources and more opportunities to optimize campaigns. The issue is that it is still hinged to the fact that mobile advertisers need to shell a lot of money to get found between millions of apps on the Appstores. The real question is what amount of money will it take to stay on top of the charts?
The most pressing challenge is for mobile advertisers is to learn more about their customer. There are device makers, platform developers, ad networks and exchanges and analytics providers that sit between the advertiser and the customer. So, the advertiser needs to rely on all these middle men to build any meaningful relationship with their customer. To me, it is like if I wanted to have a relationship with my husband, find out what he likes and what he does not like, I have to rely on all on the middle-men than going straight to him. This “lack of intimacy factor” makes lives of mobile marketers very challenging. The opportunity here is for mobile service provider to come out with an “initmacy facotr” between one to ten and offer a value proposition that takes marketers closer to customers.
Best of 2013:
Mobile marketing is more like firing in the black hole. There is some level of segmentation especially with Facebook ads. One can segment users based on their age, their likes and preferences, geographies and gender. If you know your target user, then you have a better chance of acquiring a targeted audience.
Also, the quality of the users has improved with video ads – since users gets a sneak peak into the game or app and only if it is appealing they download it. This is very helpful since low quality or incentivized users have there place but mostly can’t be retained to become paying users.
So, here is what I think developers need to keep in mind as they plan for launches in 2014.
- Manage your development budgets and allocate some marketing dollars on the onset.
- Lifetime on mobile is unpredictable. Still a 9 month lifetime is good start.
- Think Cross-platform & not mobile only to engage users across platforms and devices.
India woke up to change with recent elections in Delhi. Congress which reigned over Delhi for decades finally lost the hold on the Capital of India. The interesting part is that it lost to the Aam Admi Party (AAP) – (Aam admi stands for common man). I think it is a sign of India rising. I am inspired by the youth and people of Delhi who took matters in the hand to put a stop on the corruption and inflation. These are the things that put India’s future in threat in spite of its growing GDP.
The interesting thing is that even the media is not sure what to do with the rising of the common man. They are so used to the game of power and putting a spin on things to sell their content; simplicity of this situation is beyond its comprehension. The media outlets reporting on this are trying so hard to grip the public in fear of lack of government calling not forming a coalition (since their is no clear winner) a sign of being irresponsible. Wow! how hard is it to understand that power without influence, autonomy and empowerment is like running on a tread mill – you keep running without getting anywhere.
The entire conversation is about the ambition of the incumbent party but not about the victory of the people over power. I think that traditional media now needs new ways to communicate with the youth and people. They need a mindset change. Instilling fear before anything has happened is so old school and so 1920s.
In the business world, we are always up against change and consumer is king. And politics needs to adapt this model to a certain extent. If a company does not adapt to the new disruptive technologies and user preferences, they lose market share. A new small, agile start-up has the power to overthrow BIG conglomerates. In recent times, mobile games from nimble studios has big console makers rethink their position in the market, Cloud services created new opportunities and breakdowns and retailers are already turning to digital stores. The point is that if you are not open to change, you will lose. Even a Wall street will crumble to nothing if corruption and greed is the foundation of the business – leaving everybody in a bad situation.
In India, people have been so resigned to corruption that it is refreshing that folks are taking responsibility to do something about it. All the naysayers stand corrected, the message is “Enough is Enough”. After six decades of independence, the people of the country cannot stand being part of a nation where we worship goddesses while girls don’t feel safe leaving their homes, farmers continually live in poverty in a nation which is agriculturally independent and inflation makes it harder for the people to afford a decent meal and youth miss out on opportunities for a better future based on a caste system or their economic status.
Yes, the new party has no experience, money or track record. But this is exactly the disadvantage which is a great asset. Ask anyone who is an underdog, they will tell you that experience is over-rated and not knowing is what enables them to take risks that no one will take to be successful.
I am inspired by what took place. It gives me the goose bumps to think of the possibilities in front of India – with an empowered youth who is not going to stand for fear but for change. I am grateful to people who sacrificed their careers, families and personal aspirations to show us this day. Like the Mahatma always said, “Be the change you want to see in the world”.
I salute India!!!
I am a fan of cricket and I am fan of Sachin Tendulkar. But I am a huge fan of the man who was fierce in his commitment to the sport of cricket and never got into a controversy that took his focus away from his desire to excel in the game. We see examples of rock stars, celebrities and champions who are surrounded with scandals and controversy. Rarely, we come across someone who bears the responsibility of expectations of nation of billion people, is treated like a “God” yet stays grounded in his values and doesn’t let his success erode his ethics.
He has never been seen turn down a fan request for an autograph, a picture or even yell at media. This is how composed he is dealing with the stress of playing at international level and expectations of a nation that treats cricket as a religion. No doubt his achievements are remarkable but what fascinates me his composure in all possible stressful situations and his gratitude for love that he gets from his fans and people who believe in him. Starting his career at sixteen, he has always kept cool and respected his team and opponents equally. This is not an easy feat. It shows respect for all.
It is clear he was ambitious – he had dreams but he is an example of someone who knows that ambition can take you places and there is a possibility of going stray. But if you stay grounded and are anchored in values you never have situations that take away your focus from what you want to create. Above all you have a lot of support from others. It is not fun to be alone on the top. You need your friends and family every step of the way and have to be grateful to their contributions they make for you to be successful.
His last speech as he bid farewell to his international career is an example of what gratitude and acknowledgement of every contribution means. It is not about him, it is about others. Nothing big can be achieved alone – the bigger your ambition the more help you need. Mahatma Gandhi did not fight for independence of India alone, Mother Teresa did not run the operations for caring for poor alone and similarly no successful business man, sport star or celebrity can succeed in his ambition without the support of others and gratitude of their sacrifice and contributions.
Check out his last speech here:
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