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LinkedIn Posts

Micromanaging

Once a good friend of mine at McKinsey was assigned a young analyst for his team. For some reason, my friend was quite unhappy with the analyst’s performance. One day, while I was sitting in his room, I overheard him giving feedback to the analyst. He finally said,...

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Trigonometry and Honesty

Today I am going to give you two examinations, one in Trigonometry and another on Honesty. I hope you will pass them both, but if you must fail one, let it be Trigonometry, for there are many good people in this world today who cannot pass an examination in...

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Busybee

During my stint in the IPS, I had to often attend send-off functions for retiring police officers. And the curious thing was that people always found good things to say about the retiree -- even when he was totally rotten. There was one officer who rose through the...

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Secrets of peak performance

I learned the secret of peak performance from a small-time violin teacher in Kochi city. We hired this teacher for my daughter, whose violin practice was going nowhere -- she went to many violin teachers but quit after a few practice sessions when there was no...

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Start living today

We hear so much talk about life after death. But what about life before death? Are we truly living this very life? We desperately look for water on Mars, and rightly so. But what about another planet with ample water? Are we doing enough to preserve it? While we seek...

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Clarity over speed

I sometimes wonder if I am a little slow 🙂 Recently, when a friend was explaining some data science concepts to me, every once in a while, I would just ask him to stop. We would sit in awkward silence for half a minute, and then, almost imperceptibly, I would find...

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Motivation

Motivation is never the problem -- ever. The problem is something else. And here is how I know. When I was determined to clear the Civil Services, I had zero motivation deficit. There was no distraction, no procrastination. In the police service, I have worked 36 hrs...

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Unicorns

Last month, I had a traumatic experience -- I tried to book a cab. I was in this unfamiliar city of Rajkot, and who wants to talk to a taxi company in a new place? So naturally, I thought of the app-based taxi service unicorns, opened my phone, and booked a cab. And...

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Risk of failure

The best book has not been written. The best ad campaign has not been created. The best painting has not been painted. But who will write the next big book? Or create the next big whatever? The book that beats Harry Potter will probably not be a book about a magic...

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Ego

One of the most humiliating moments of my life came in 2008, on a day when nobody humiliated me -- I did it to myself. At that time, I was working with McKinsey in New York and desperately wanted to move back to India (my family had relocated recently). To find a job...

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Catastrophize

In 2004, I walked into Mumbai’s Oberoi Hotel for my Wharton MBA admissions interview. I was nervous but once the interview started I got into flow. The interview was smooth, and I had no idea how time flew by until the interviewer thanked me, indicating that the...

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Rewrite the story

In 2004, I realized that my life-story was going wrong. I had joined the Indian Police Service expecting massive challenge and excitement. And the first five years delivered exactly that -- it was like a dream, despite the ups and downs. Yet, after that, something...

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