Daily Dose of Leadership Training

Leadership Training or for that matter leadership, is a very broad term and is applicable to everyone, whether it is the watchman of the office, the CEO of a big company, a father or a husband at home. However it is often misunderstood as a term that most people link to leadership positions they hold in the society or in organizations.

So let’s understand leadership a little more in depth to be able to know what it actually means.

I would like to share a real life scenario where i experienced leadership capabilities in a fried fish seller recently.

There is a fried fish seller who operates from the road near our office and I eat fried fish every other day from him. His fried fish are fresh and very tasty.

 This particular time that i visited him, he had just come back from a long holiday of over 3 months and I was wondering where he had been. When i asked him, he said that he had taken a break as the fish market is closed for 3 months of the monsoon season. I asked what he was doing for those 3 months and he said he drove an auto riksha for around 8 hours a day during these months.

 The next question I asked him was how he managed his house expenses with this business of fish selling being a part time business, to which he answered that it was difficult and he was just about able to manage. He also said that he was quite happy as he did not want to slog and do additional work like other people in his locality.

Leadership Training at its Best

The Happy Fisherman

 I wondered what could be the reason behind him not being interested in working harder and making more money for his family and finally landed up asking him. 

His answer was that he had 3 sons and spent a large part of the day in teaching them and ensuring that they get the best of education, love and nurturing. He said that as a part of his efforts his 2 sons were doing very well at school and he wanted them to grow and not be a fish seller like him. If he would have not spent time with his children then they would also have no future like him and would end up on the road. His wife was also at home and ensured she was available for the children and the husband all the time. The family was thus fully focused together in their goal of bringing up their children and giving them the best environment.

 I felt it was great to see the foresight of a father who was illiterate and had no formal education and I felt truly inspired. 

Now this was an example of pure leadership for me, where the father of the house had a larger vision for his family and children. He understood how not to get sucked into the daily routine of life and to keep his vision strong and worked on it day by day. He was also self aware and felt that earning loads of money was not as important as his children’s future.

If you look deeper into this story you can learn some valuable lessons like

  • Managing self & time,
  • Self sacrifice for others,
  • Simplicity of life
  • Decision making,
  • Long term growth,
  • Alignment of vision with actions,
  • Team work.

Such examples are all around us at all points of time and there is a lot to learn from them and then experiment and imbibe into our routine life.  In fact it’s easier to learn from the little things in life rather than trying to digest big theories!

We, at The Yellow Spot, feel that it all begins with starting to know the Self and learning how to manage the self. Managing the self requires insights into ones thoughts and feelings which leads to greater awareness  and what you get aware of can be more easily changed and most of the time even changes automatically!

It is said by the great mystics that “all change is only possible outside when you get in touch with your inside” and how true it is.

At The Yellow Spot, our leadership training programs focus on helping you to start observing yourself and the way you behave. We firmly believe that no leadership program can be successful unless it is able to bring change inside the individual and hence all our leadership skills training emphasize on the same.

Self Awareness is however also a process. It is not something that happens overnight and requires lots of patience and continuity. We deploy tools like the Gestalt Therapy, NLP, Transactional Analysis, Vipassana and Mindfulness as well as Human Process Labs to catalyse the process.

Our focus is on the whole individual rather than over one aspect of him. Once self awareness is developed, all other skills get easily imbibed. In fact we have to actually make individuals unlearn a lot to be able to start learning and practicing once again!

If you would like to be a part of our Leadership Training workshops, you can definitely get in touch with us. Do visit our website http://www.theyellowspot.com/ for more details.

Appreciating diversity through Team Building Workshops

I read two very interesting theories yesterday which I could connect to our Team Building Workshops. The first one was on the learning cycle and the learning styles that we all have. As per the theory, commonly known as the Kolb’s Learning Cycle and Kolb’s Learning Styles respectively, we all have a typical learning cycle that we tend to follow and should follow for maximum learning. We go through a particular experience, we then like to observe what happened in the experience, reflect on it, draw our conclusions from it and then go ahead and test our conclusions.

So if I was to try to learn a skill at work, say how to handle irate customers how I would do it is:

  1. Experience: I first interact with an irate customer to know what happens in such a case
  1. Observation and Reflection: I recollect what happened in the interaction and try to reflect on various aspects like how the conversation went, what were the words and feelings exchanged, how I reacted or responded to what the customer said, etc.
  1. Conceptualisation: I now start drawing my conclusions as to what I need to do to handle the irate customer well or better like take a deep breath and allow the customer to vent while he is angry instead of defending myself
  1. Testing: I now go and try my conclusions on another irate customer to see if they are correct

The testing phase then gives rise to a new set of experiences and the cycle continues.

David Kolb goes on to say that although we all follow the same learning cycle, yet we all have different learning styles. So while somebody might prefer the observation and reflection part, others might learn more by testing and actually doing things.

The other theory I read was on how all of us use different areas of our brains for performing different functions. So although we all have similar faculties in the brain which can perform similar functions, the use of some come naturally to us whereas others just don’t. So while some of us may use our analytical areas more, others may use their intuitive faculties more. Now those using the analytical areas can also use the intuitive areas with practice, but it may be a strain as it’s not something that come naturally to them.

Another interesting thing that I found in this theory is that we like being around people who use similar brain parts to ourselves and normally become friends with such people. On the other hand, we are naturally attracted to those who use complementary brain parts to ours and choose such people as a mate as they tend to complete us as cover up our so called weaknesses.

So if you look at both theories, they give us great insights into teams. They both tell us that teams being made up of humans always have a common factor in them. They have similar ways of learning as well as similar brain functions. In that sense every team has a common thread running through it.

However, if you go a little deeper you will realise that teams also have diversity. They are made up of different people who differ in the way they like to learn and differ in the way that they make use of their brain functionalities.

Team Building Workshops
Diversity in Teams

So then is the commonality good or is the diversity good for a team? Am sure you all have the answer to this one and you will tell me that it’s really a no brainer! Both are good, the common pieces keep us bonded together as a single unit and the diversity helps us in performing a variety of functions which each team member excels in. Right?

My question to you is that although we all know this and say it, is it really something that we believe and practice? Is it something that really comes from our core? Do we really appreciate diversity?

The fact is that most of us are unfortunately unable to appreciate it although we may try very hard too! Why, because of an innate need to be accepted. Have you ever thought of why we like people who are similar to us? It’s because when someone is similar, it somewhere confirms to us that we are also alright which in turn makes us feel more accepted.

If you look at it the other way also, you will realise that we don’t like things which are different from us. Most of the conflicts in the world occur because of this. So we don’t like people who are of a different religion or from a different country or city. The conflicts that we have in office are also mostly because of different opinions and different personalities.

So is there some way to appreciate these differences then? Join our team building workshops and we will happily show you the way to have a bonded yet diversity appreciating team.

Visit our website http://theyellowspot.com to learn what skills your team members have and how you can leverage them.

Time Management Training or Mind Training?

Is Time Management Training really a thing? Or should I say is time really a thing that can be managed and that’s something that we can train you on?

Time is a very peculiar commodity. It is constant yet it changes! We all have 24 hours in a day, so in that sense it is constant. Yet at the same time it is variable too. It varies from people to people and even amongst the same person! Weird isn’t it? The number of hours in a day for the Prime Minister would probably seem like less than 24 whereas those for a retired man would seem like a lot more. You can see it in an individual too. Time seems to be flying by when we are watching a good movie and 2 hours really feel like an hour whereas when we are studying a subject we are not exceptionally fond off, even 30 minutes can feel like 2 hours!

How does this happen? It’s actually all to do with our minds. Frankly there is no change in the actual time available or spent; the only difference is in the way we perceive it. Why the difference in perception? It’s due to our mind.

Now let me tell you a secret. There is actually no time. It’s just something that has been created by us to give ourselves a platform to measure events against; something relative, created to keep everyone on the same page. This can be understood by when we connect to the present moment or should I say the direct neural network in our nervous systems.

There are 3 aspects that an event can be broken down into. The past, present and future. The past is what has happened previously and is over. The present is what is happening at this very instant. The future is what will happen after this present moment has passed. So each moment is a future moment, then becomes a present moment and then becomes the past, all in 3 superfast moments! Confused? It’s a bit of a funny concept as we have not really spent much time dwelling on it although it is continuously happening.

In fact I can see it clearly while I am writing this article. I frankly have no clue as to what I am writing (I know I wasn’t supposed to tell you that!), it’s just flowing through me. I have not really thought about what I am writing or what I am going to write, it’s just that something is coming to me and I am writing it down. So I really don’t have a clue of the future moments as I have no idea of what I am going to write, I am writing what is coming to me in the present moment and as soon as I write it it becomes the past! Since I am so ‘in the present moment’, I have no sense of time and do not even have the urge to measure it! All I know is that I am thoroughly enjoying writing this article and am feeling very fulfilled in doing the same.

Time Management Training needs you to connect to the now

This is the direct neural network I was talking about. When you connect to this network, time loses its meaning. Am sure you will ask me how then can I manage time while being connected to this network as I have lost complete sense of time?

It’s quite unbelievable until you actually do it. What happens in the present moment is that you don’t waste time thinking as such. Yes your working mind is working, or the conscious mind as you may call it. That is the minimal amount of mind needed to perform a task, like me typing in this case. I need my mind to instruct my fingers which keys to press for typing. The rest of my mind is not really on. I know that sounds absurd but it’s true. I am currently not making use of my subconscious mind which is actually the one that takes up a lot of our time. When we are just connected to the conscious mind, it feels like things are happening through you and you cease to get tired even though frankly you are working at a superfast speed without feeling the strain of it. When you work through the subconscious mind, there is a lot of processing that goes into it which wastes a lot of energy and time which we conserve if we just stick to the conscious mind.

The next question will be then how do we do this, right? How do we switch from our normal tendency of staying in the past and the future, (which is staying in the subconscious mind or as we call it operating from the default network) to operating from the conscious mind or the direct network. It’s done by simply staying in the present moment. Well it’s not that simply frankly because we have lost all practice of it. We knew how to do it as kids but have slowly forgotten the art. Whenever you realise you are going into the past or future, you gently bring your mind back to the present and then starts the magic. You will never have to ever manage your time once you get the hang of it.

To relearn this beautiful technique, you can definitely attend one of our Time Management Training sessions and we would be happy to assist you get back what was once yours!

So that’s me signing off and as I look at the time I have really written this article in superb time:)

Visit us at http://www.theyellowspot.com to learn more about us.

Inviting Corporate Trainers for Business Partner Program

I have been talking to a large number of soft skills trainers as of late. Actually soft skills trainers would be an incorrect tag, corporate trainers would be better. We have recently launched a Business Partner program wherein we work with trainers from different leagues of life across the globe, to give clients the best possible experience. Sounds interesting? The trainers we have spoken to found it tooJ

 

Inviting Corporate Trainers for Business Partner

 

So let me tell you a little about the program to give you a better idea. You know how we have been working with various expert vendors to provide our clients with a wider range of offerings in fields like E-Learning, Organisational Development, Executive Coaching, Project Management, Risk Management, IT, Computers, Finance, etc. Well we thought since this model is working so well, let’s come up with a model for Freelance Trainers where we tie up with them and further broaden our offerings.

Now you must be wondering how this really works and how it benefits everybody. Let me explain.

How it Works: The corporate trainers that we tie up with go out into the market and represent us as Business Partners. So they get business in our name and we get it delivered. Simple isn’t it?

 

Benefits to Clients:

  1. They get greater variety in terms of offerings
  1. They get the most skilled trainers delivering their sessions
  1. They get to converse with trainers right from the start who understand their needs better and can offer them better solutions than Business Development Executives
  1. They can have their needs fulfilled at any location across the globe
  1. They can have a single company executing their PAN India assignments, giving them consistency and standardisation at all locations
  1. They know they will receive the best as far as quality, integrity and transparency goes as The Yellow Spot ensures these values are maintained even by its Business Partners
  1. They don’t need to worry about issues they may face with Freelancers like them falling sick and not turning up for the session as The Yellow Spot has around 80 to 100 consultants across the country and can easily arrange for a back-up

 

Benefits to Business Partners:

  1. They find it easy to get business as they have the backing of an 8 year old company with more than a 150 clients
  1. They can offer the client a session even if it is not something they are experts in or it is a PAN India assignment which they cannot deliver on their own
  1. They get preference for delivering sessions in which they have expertise and have brought business in
  2. They get support in business development and in content development, wherever required
  1. They get the experience of being an entrepreneur with the support of an established organisation and the motivation of being part of a large team
  1. They earn greater remuneration as they get a Business Development fee for every business they bring in and a Training Delivery fee for every session they deliver, besides being able to get a higher ticket value than they would have got as a freelancer
  1. They can work at their own pace as The Yellow Spot believes in proactiveness and taking initiative rather than imposing targets
  1. They can maintain their freedom as they can continue freelancing or running their own business

 

Benefits to The Yellow Spot:

  1. We have a large motivated team reaching out to more and more clients
  1. Our sales team has a good understanding of delivery and hence brings home a better understanding of the requirement
  1. We have more expertise on our team and can offer our clients more
  1. We get to help trainers who are really interested in learning more
  1. We get to learn more through sharing
  1. We can reach out and help more participants through the quality and passion that we offer

 

Well those are the points that I can currently think of, am sure there must be more that you can think of. I’m hoping you must have got an idea about this program and why we keen to promote it. It’s really a Win-Win-Win solution for the Client, Business Partner and Us. Isn’t that just great!

Visit us at http://www.theyellowspot.com/ to know more or call us on +91 9769733305. See you soon:)

Communication Skills Training using Body, Voice, Words

Communication skills training is the most essential form of training as communication is the most elementary skill required by humans since the inception of humanity, without which any contact between two beings would have been impossible. In fact it is not only restricted to humans but extends to all living creatures as they also use some form of communication, although we may be far from understanding it!

Communication has been around since a very very very long time. The only thing that has really changed in it is that it’s got a little refined as we moved down the time line, but otherwise the purpose remains pretty much the same.

 

The evolution of language and communication skills training
From Cavemen to Common Day Men, nothing has really changed!!!

 

In the early hunter days, we used it more as a means to survive. We depended more on body language, gestures and making peculiar sounds to indicate to one another when there was danger or when there was food around. Language frankly took quite some time to evolve, which is probably why it still forms a very small percentage of our communication. Yes it’s true, words only form 7% of our face to face communication whereas body language and the way in which we speak the words form a whopping 93%. Shocked? I was too and we actually spend so much time trying to perfect our vocabulary, don’t we!

Communication has been the key in the social space as we evolved as species and it started playing a major role in our social as well as professional success. As languages evolved, communication started getting more and more sophisticated with more and more emphasis being laid on verbal and written communication. However, these continue to be impoverished modes of true contact with other individuals as that can only happen by putting those things in place that really matter, body language and voice. Let’s say it’s like a wedding cake with many layers of cake. Body Language forms the lower most layer, the solid foundation, while voice is the middle layer. The cake can be complete with just the base layer as is with body language, a powerful way of expressing, in fact one which is adept at expressing all by itself.  Voice provides the next layer, the base of the upper layers of word. Truly, words without the lower layer of voice are quite empty and can more often than not lead to gaps in understanding what we are really trying to say. Remember the last time you misunderstood the meaning of an ambiguous word because you either did not have access to the emotion behind it or were not too successful is deciphering it correctly? So are words important then? Let’s just say that they are the couple standing on the top of the cake. They add to the beauty of the cake and often mesmerize us and keep our attention fixed on them, often leading us to miss out the beauty of the lower and middle layers! Nonetheless, they make the cake more attractive and if we can remember to look at the entire cake in a balanced and non-partial manner then they can be quite a completing factor!

The current predominantly ‘word’ modes of communication we typically use are telephone, e-mail and how can we forget, social media. These make use of mostly verbal and written modes of communication and have done a pretty good job of bringing the world together and making it a smaller place. The question then is that have they really made it a smaller place? Are people really closer to each other than they were before?

Well they have definitely made it a lot easier for people to communicate. The Facebooks, LinkedIn, Whatsapp and Twitters have done wonders when it comes to making people a click or should I say a tap away. In fact they have eased communication for introverts like me who are more comfortable expressing their thoughts and emotions through the written word. However they have not done very well when it comes to bonding for many people. The virtual world has torn apart many relationships by reducing face to face interactions with our near and dear ones. We have started spending so much time in the virtual world that quality time with our family has really taken a back seat and will soon be a thing of the past! With less family time being spent, families are breaking apart and we have seen an unprecedented rise in the number of divorce cases as well as suicides being committed. While everything looks perfect and rosy in the unreal world, relations are becoming fragile and communication is deteriorating in the real world.

So does that mean this form of communication is bad? No. It just means that is being used in an unbalanced manner. As with all things in this world, balance is at the centre of everything. Everything ever created can have a positive and a negative side, depending on the way you use it. The same goes with communication. It has to be used in a moderate manner. Some things have to be spoken while others need not be expressed. Some need to be expressed using the body while others using words. Some need to be expressed in a specific way to ensure that they do not make the recipient uncomfortable.

We invite you to come and learn the art of communication through the communication skills training that we conduct. Whether it is better expression through the body, voice or words; our communication skills training will help you go to the next level using a range of different techniques that help us communicate better with you:)