How was the experience of contesting for the initiative by TOI?
The experience of contesting for I LEAD INDIA was “Awesome”. It always excites me to be a part of a mass level initiative. Since the beginning, youth has been my area of interest and when I read that TOI is on a lookout for someone who could exemplify compassion, brilliance, mindfulness, I decided to do my bit.
The rigorous process entailed sending in an application. With 20,000 applications TOI shortlisted 2900. The 2nd round encompassed 3 online tests gauging personality, numerical and analytical- ability of the applicants. While the instruments devised by the UK company envisioned 33 minutes per test, TOI raised the challenge by awarding only 17 minutes per test given, not to mention, it of course was capped with a one-time login. Only about 40 to 50 applicants were shortlisted per city for the 3rd round. The 3rd round entailed 3 rounds of Group Discussions. Teamed into groups of 15, our team had to compete with others to gain funds. The target was to blend- in creativity with analytics and strategy to have our NGO funded as against 8 other NGO’s contesting for the funds from the same source. While we all presented our points as a team, our individual views too were honored as they were recorded separately. We now were 400 of us who were shortlisted and were now exposed to personal round of interview with TOI Editor and Founder Director of IIIT. Our selection depended on our interview and the voting that the public engaged in. And here I am, representing Bangalore amongst 4 others in the TOI I LEAD INDIA campaign.
What initiatives do you plan to engage in now that you have been recognized as one of the top 5?
Going forward, we have 1 common issue to address as a team and for the same we dedicate 5 hours every day. Our mission is to convert the Church Street in Bangalore into a modern street, breaking from the shackles of encroachment, lawlessness, clogged drains, garbage and parking mafia. With TOI support, our work is expedited. We target to have a public session every month to understand the point of view of the public. This will also help us create a community of passionate individuals driven to make a difference.
How has the journey post SOIL been like?
I have always been focused towards a purpose since I have a firm belief that one is born for a purpose and soon you realize that in your dream is everyone’s dream. For me, SOIL was a step to achieve my purpose.
My work with Dalmia and engagement in family business gave me great exposure and learning. 2 months back, I started my 2nd social venture ‘Val-Ed Initiatives’ which teaches children ‘Values’ in an innovative & impactful manner to create stronger & healthier character in children bringing focus to learning rather than outcome. I teach values like Love, Focus, Positivity, Integrity & much more.
How would you define your experience in SOIL and how did it help you leverage your calling?
Soil was a leap of faith. We had no placement records to see, all we had was an attitude and belief that each one of us will make it happen. Each one of us had a higher will and were driven towards achievement. In my life, each person has taught me something. From Anil, I learnt how to be true, compassionate, mindful, sustainable, express love for each other. I have given great importance to focusing on positivity rather than negativity. I used this learning in every phase of my life, and wherever I applied it, my belief of it working was reinforced. My experience in SOIL taught me to have faith, remain energetic and hopeful. That, I feel, led to a great bonding. We learnt, ‘to get, you have to give for it first’. My mantra in life can be summed as “become a Go Giver than a Go- Getter!”
Compiled by: Namrata Singh
..» Read More
27th December, 2010
A few days back my wife Neera suggested that we subscribe only to one instead of the customary three newspapers that we have been reading for a long time.
Why was I not spending time on reading these sources of information about the world?
Is it because there was too much of bad news being splashed all over?
Was it because the common man did not trust their objectivity due to their “ownership”?
Perhaps the biggest reason in my case has been the excessive coverage on “scams and corruption” without a single “big fish” being accountable for the same.
Last week we read about a junior officer of Tamil Nadu being jailed for one year for accepting a bribe of Rs 50 twenty years back!
On the other hand, big names in politics, bureaucracy and business who are” known” to be corrupt never suffer.
Why has our character become so weak?
Why is there so much cynicism about those in public life?
The growth of the “Maoist” movement, terrorism and the resurgence of militant trade union movement is due to this sharp erosion in values. When we see people in power become “greedy” and “loot” the common man, they are provoked to take up “violent” means to espouse their own “causes”.
How can we reverse this trend?
The time has come for “good people” to form a strong network.
In every community, we need to organize ourselves. Let us form associates of residents in every neighborhood. Let us choose those who are honest and fair to become our representatives. Let us involve local educational institute and honest NGO’s to join hands. Let us share stories about how inspite of the rampant corruption, honest people still manage to win in the long run.
Let us together fight corruption by resolving not to succumb to short cuts ourselves. Let us include “Ethics” as a core subject in every school, college and Institute of higher education.
-Anil Sachdev, Founder, SOIL ..» Read More
17th December, 2010
Are our cricket administrators inspired leaders?
Yesterday, there were two cricket test matches which commenced in two parts of the world. Both the pitches are known to assist fast bowlers.
England reached Australia early played some local matches, were match fit and practiced hard. They were “turned on” to play the first big match at Brisbane. They are growing from strength to strength India was still playing one day games at home in New Zealand and several of other key players reached South Africa just a few days before the first test match.
Both England and India knew about these big tours well in advance and realize that as soon as they are back, they have to get ready for the World Cup.
Why do we in India crowd our schedules so much that we allow our chances to be compromised?
Is this “inspired leadership”? Are we “mindful” and “self aware” of the consequence of our action?
Do we give the time to our players to study the new conditions, the strengths and weaknesses of our opposition, the time to absorb the local culture & people and enjoy their game? Are we leveraging the power of “diversity” fully?
Is this focus on the “short term” at the cost of the “long term” not a dangerous threat to the practice of “sustainability”?
We in the School of Inspired Leadership have been inspired to create a School based on the five pillars of “Mindfulness”, “Ethics”, “Compassion”, “Diversity” and “Sustainability”.
Every day, we remind ourselves that we cannot build organizations of consequence without emphasizing the value of these powerful levers. Mahatma Gandhi lived these “pillars” everyday. He became the greatest leader of our times.
Is it too much to ask of ourselves to pay attention to these in the way we work, play cricket, govern our country or run our media?
-Anil Sachdev, Founder, SOIL ..» Read More
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