By Rajita Kulkarni


World Forum for Ethics in Business

Towards Inspired Leadership

Each of us is a leader. Whether it is at home, at work or in our communities. Each of us leads in some way.

As we progress in life – families growing, promotions at work, deeper involvement in communities, the leadership roles become more complex. The challenges are different, skills required are diverse and solutions are not mostly black or white. Have you experienced this? I am sure there may have been many difficult moments you may have faced. I have.

Then how does one navigate through such leadership situations? How does one create win win ? What support can one draw on?

There are a few time tested approaches. I reclassify them as my 5 Is.

1) Imbibe

As a leader, it is very important to keep ourselves updated of the latest in our field. Imbibe new knowledge and skills regularly. Stay with the times.The more equipped we are, the more capable we are. It need not be formal education necessarily. We can imbibe and learn new things from every day life, people around us, practical experiences. Every moment is an opportunity to learn something new. One leader I know, doesn’t go to bed till he learns 3 new things every day. Its great to have a personal rule like this.What new did you imbibe today ?

2) Innovate

If we keep doing things the same way, we will continue to get the same results. As a leader , we need to innovate. If we want to scale bigger heights, break barriers, preempt competition, we have to find newer, better, cheaper, faster, nicer ways of doing things. If we don’t, someone else will. Staying ahead of the mass is important for success. Innovation is critical for that. We are seeing the results of innovation in every sector today – telecommunication, airlines, hospitality, banking etc. Even if you innovate, if your competition is better at it, you still lose.

3) Initiate

Everyone looks to the leader for new initiatives. It is an important responsibility of leadership. One of my previous bosses, evaluated us on the number of new initiatives each of us launched every week.

Our team was always buzzing with new ideas and plans. We had so many new initiatives going on, even if a couple of them did not work out, it didn’t matter. Ten other would. Out of the 43 of us working for this boss, 38 become CEOs/Presidents/Managing Directors. It works !

4) Interact

Don’t be stuck to your computers and phones. Get out and meet people. Interact with them. It is invigorating, refreshing and energizing. Meet customers, colleagues, peers, competitors, stakeholders.

Of course technology has made it possible to interact with the whole world at the click of a button. Do that too, but its not a substitute for human interaction. When I was leading a 300 member team few years ago, I had a personal resolution to interact with 5 team members in an informal way. It did more good to their performance, than a formal review! The personal touch makes all the difference.

5) Inspire

Don’t preach. Practice. Walk the talk. If you do this , your team will always be inspired to do more. If not, no amount of external motivation will be enough. A stellar glowing example of inspired leadership is Sri Sri Ravi Shankar, the co-founder of the World Forum for Ethics in Business. His personal commitment to serving humanity has inspired hundreds and thousands of volunteers around the world to create a violence free , stress free society.

I am delighted to share with you that in less than 3 weeks, you will get a chance to experience each of these 5 Is at The World Forum for Ethics in Business’ annual symposium at the European Parliament in Brussels.

On November 15th, you will be able to:

Imbibe – new tools and techniques like Adaptive Leadership, Multiplier Concept, Mindful Leadership, tools to use in private sector for better governance & more,

Innovate – to create new approaches for an ethical world,

Initiate- launch of the historic Online Ethical Leadership curriculum,

Interact – with world leaders and the best minds in the industry,

Inspire- yourself and others to create a better world

Be there on 15th November. Register on now.

Experience the 5 Is in action leading you to the 6th I – IMPACT !

Immediately !

Register here for the International Leadership Symposium on Ethics in Business, 15 November 2013, European Parliament Brussels