Writing summary of Go Kiss The World by Subroto Bagchi was by far the most difficult assignment I have been given. The book is a treasure in itself and it has something for everyone. It could be pass on to one generation to other among the peers. Each line in the book is a gem and Subroto has filled ocean in the pot. If you like the summary do not restrain yourself from owning a copy of it.
The author of The High Performance Entrepreneur Subroto Bagchi, this time gives a deep insight of his life in the book Go Kiss The World. Here is the brief summary of his autobiography “Go Kiss The World”.
Displacement and Progress
“My mother always told me I was born just when the big red sun emerged in the east and burst forth in a new day.” This is how Subroto Bacghi’ mother describes the arrival of the author on the earth and he cherish this description a lot. Subroto Bagchi was born in May 1957 in a small village of Orissa named Patnagarh.
Subroto’s father has a government job. As a result he grew up in many districts like Koraput, Keonjhar, Rayagada, Nabarangapur till the age of seven. Then he shifted to Bhubaneswar with his mother and elder brother Debi Prasad whom he called Dadamoni. There he was admitted in class 5 and it was the beginning of his formal education.
Since his childhood Subroto was on move. Never settle in one place. This Subroto thinks is the key to progress. “Many professionals shudder at the thought of physical displacement, yet crave rapid mobility and growth in their careers”.
Of Adversity and Faith
Subroto has all regard and love for her mother. She was the one who inspired Subroto to remain steadfast in the adverse situation. Subroto describes her as a woman of character and substance. She lost her vision due to ulcer in her eye but that did not stop her from leading a normal life. She was a woman with no complains but full of prayers for everyone.
Grace Under Pressure
Subroto’s charm for displacement comes from his father. Due to the government job he was constantly transferred from one district to another. Subroto owes his mastery over English to his father. He took special care that all his children are well versed in the English language. Both his parents made sure that their children grow up as honest people who hold their ground without fear and favour.
Power of Mentoring
In this chapter Subroto writes about his elder brothers and their influence in his life. His elder brother played a very important role in molding his personality and attitude. He writes, ”I learnt the importance of ambition and achievement from Dadamoni; from Amitav(brother), I learnt that our achievement are only as good as the value they create for others. ”
He further writes(I simply love these lines)”The capacity to receive asks for humility. Humility makes the mind an empty vessel that then can receive. The capacity to receive expands when there is the willingness to give back- only when we return what we receive, are we blessed to receive even more.”
In high school, Subroto got enrolled in NCC and in 1975 he was elected as the NCC cadet of the Country. He vividly recalls his interview in Indian Military Academy. The chairman of the panel asked him about Diego Garcia. The panel was checking his knowledge of current affair. He answered the question. The reason he manage to do so was his years of reading out newspaper to his father. Reading is such a good habit sadly these days we do so less. There is also another reason he cited for this story. Subroto says that giving a memory of yours to a person is essential for remembrance.
He writes, “We live in a world of information overload and attention deficiency.People we meet are often looking at us but thinking about something else. Be it a job interview, a presentation, or a meeting, we all have a very short window to make the right impression, and unfortunately most of us miss it.”
The Future of Desire and The Future of Fate
After completing his Graduation, Subroto came at a crossroad. He was bewildered about what to do next. Army or civil services didn’t attracted him. He was also not interested in higher studies. The only option left was to look for work.
So with three hundred rupees salary Subroto joined industrial department of the Orissa government as a lower division clerk. This was his first job and Subroto gives some insight of how things happen in the government office. His work life begin from 1st November 1976. But there was not much to do for Subroto which was filling unrest in him.
Subroto started applying for job and was lucky to get a call from DCM group of management, an old textile mill. After clearing a series of elimination rounds and final interview with the top management executives he was selected in DCM as management trainee on the compensation of Rs 900.
At DCM, Subroto worked in the various department of the factory and also the marketing aspect and was a great learning experience for him. After a few months his salary was further revised and now he was earning Rs 1,800 a month. He used to send a part of his salary to his mother through money order and she used to send receipt back signed by her. Subroto cherished those receipt. He writes,” I marvelled at the steady signature that masked the fact that she was actually a woman whose eyesight had been permanently robbed by destiny.”
Killer, Get Killed
Suroto has completed a year in DCM and has now been designated as officer on special duty. He reports to the Work Secretary called Mahesh Chandra Bahree. Subroto describes as,”extremely knowledgeable and competent.” He treated everyone with respect irrespective of their position. That why was very popular. Bahree was also very efficient in his work and capable of keeping things under control.
Subroto has a lot of respect for him and unlike Bahree he don’t like to entertain people who are not professional at the workplace and loiters around and bad mouthing about the management. Subroto this attitude put many people in soup when he objected to such behaviour and threaten to resign. When there is a lot of politics, gossips and backbiting going around in the workplace, the doom of that company is very near. DCM was also no exception.
In the Path of Jupiter
Subroto has put in the papers but the new director of DCM convince him to change his mind. “He asked me ‘Have you ever seen a seed sprouting from under a big boulder?’
‘When the seed is under the huge rock, who has the upper hand?’’The rock, sir’
‘Precisely. The relative balance of power s in favour of the rock. The rock can crush the sapling. The sapling however, does not assert itself, does not fight the rock; it gently circumvents the rocks and keep growing along its side. And one day, the same sapling has become a huge tree. At that time, where do you think the rock sits? It remains at the feet of the tree forever’. The message was clear. As a sapling, I was choosing to fight the rock. ’
Sometimes being adamant does gives solution to the problem you have cleverly find the other way.
DCM was plagued unionism, politics, strike, losses which cost Bahree his job and Subroto was transferred to a very non happening department of the factory.
Learning to Fly
Subroto was quick to learn that his days in DCM is over and he should now move on. Human resource officer of DCM informed him about the HCL is hiring for entry level sales people. Offer with HCL has two major downside. First, salary was 40 times lesser than what he was getting at DCM but that could be compensated by commission earned on meeting the sales target. This means that there will be a serious cash crunch. Second, he has travel four times more in this job.
Subroto was in dilemma to accept the offer or not. In the meantime he read a book Jonathan Seagull by Richard Bach. Bagchi writes,” The protagonist of the book Jonathan taught me that life’s true purpose is not to earn; it’s about having the courage to take the flight. Suddenly, the decision we has to take was clear- we would take the risk, a leap into the future.’’
Subroto joined HCL. Later he went on to join PSI and MMC before taking the plunge to start his own business called Project.21. He writes, “My early years at HCL, PSI and MMC taught me sales and marketing; these years became a solid foundation for my stint in international business much later. ” His views on sales job is impeccable. “Selling and negotiation skills are intertwined. A sale without a negotiation is like courtship without romance. The negotiation skills we learn in selling become essential as one grows in any profession. You negotiate with your boss, your peers, your children and sometimes with complete strangers. ”
“Good Salespeople learn that the real meaning of no is Not Now”
Subroto’s life was not all about work. He always was a passionate writer as well. He used to columns for newspaper like Dataquest and others. He writes,”Those who write well, learn to synthesize their ideas better; it makes them better thinker.” Subroto urges in his book to pursue your hobby and your talent. “So many of us choose the uni-dimensionality of a work life, always citing lack of time to pursue a hobby. If we make a small commitment towards keeping our talent alive, one day it becomes a beautiful gift, which nourishes us, make our lives complete.”
Subroto’s ex boss in MMC Satrajit Majumdar and his friend Sujit Bose approached Subroto to be the part of their start up company. This led to the birth of Project.21. Many of his ex colleagues of PSI and MMC became the part of this company. They were an IT- related training organisation for corporate sector. During that time Rajiv Gandhi was the prime minister of India and computer boom was in the offing.
Business for Project.21 started flowing in slowly but steadily. They trained people working in companies like Coal India, ONGC, MECON, Tata Steel Chloride India etc. They also won the assignment of Wipro and soon rolled out a nationwide training programme for Wipro.
But soon the founders of Project.21 started falling apart and Subroto again found himself at a crossroad. The company was closed but it was a great learning experience for him. “ The experience grounded me as a entrepreneur, taught me the pitfalls of running a start-up, and helped me learn what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur. It taught me how to sell consulting, which is an abstract concept. Project.21 was meant to be a seed in my mind that would germinate exactly a decade later when the reason and season would come together.
Winning the Mind Game
Subroto’s hard work for Project.21 paid off. He landed himself with job offer at Wipro Technology. For the next 10 years Wipro will the work ground for Subroto. He will develop great rapport and understanding with Ashok Soota, then president of Wipro Technology and together they will be co-founding Mindtree. During his 10 years stint, Subroto has worked at the various department of Wipro at different levels.
He started as a manager customer relation and sales support. His first task was to establish a relation of trust and peace between sales force and factory. If anything goes wrong both the teams blames one another. For six months he worked incessantly with both the departments. “The key issue for me was to make the work of the sales coordination team transparent to the field organization, to create a collaboration culture between the field and the factory, improve responsiveness and help the team build pride in their work. There was transparency and rich communication, and people felt confident enough that they broke the bad news first.”
Soon he was given extra responsibility of technical training and customer relation. His hands were full until one day Azim Premji , Wipro’s Chairman gave me an extra assignment of debt management.
Wipro was then having poor cash flow. Customers were holding money and some were refusing to pay back. Subroto while analyzing the situation found, “The biggest problem was the salesperson themselves. They were too shy to ask for money. The typical profile of the Wipro salesperson was a top-of-the-engineer with a matching MBA. He is the most technically informed person. He was also a decent guy and good guys do not remind people if they owe money. ”
He held two days conference with the area managers and then traveled across the country and met spoke to each salesperson. He writes, “Special incentives were introduced for them to collect receivables from orphaned accounts, stopped deliveries where past payments had not been received, forced errant customers to sit for a negotiation and trained the entire sales force on why it was okay to be an engineer with an MBA degree and still collect money like a small-town trader”
“Finally. to build awareness and pride, I mounted a series of poster campaigns. One said Like Clean Water, Clean Order are a Survival Issue”. The campaign was a hit and the coffers were full.
The Journey is the Reward
Later Subroto was appointed at the marketing manager post in Wipro GE Medical System but fate has some other plans for him. Subroto soon got an opportunity to go to USA. Wipro was planning to sell its R&D capabilities to the Silicon valley companies like Intel, Sun Microsystem. But for that an office for R&D has to open. For this work Subroto has asked and he said yes after his mother’s permission.
The task was easier said than done. A few Wipro’s R&D engineers were working with the Intel team. Mostly these engineers were on their own and were given a measly sum of 1,800 dollar every month as maintenance allowance as only this much was allowed by Reserve Bank of India. “During those days RBI would allow a company to buy the foreign exchange needed to spend oversea. The RBI has total control and rationed foreign exchange because India didn’t have enough reserves.”
The first thing Subroto did was to make the life of the R&D Engineers a little easy if not comfortable.”Listening to their woes, I realized mobility was a big issue- not all of them had learnt to drive because of the meager allowance. I informed the home office that I has asked all the engineers to take driving lessons and the cost would be reimbursed.” Similar there were many such issues which were solved by Subroto “Suddenly the group of rag -tag soldiers saw a general in their midst. It is amazing how a little empathy can be the starting point of larger things to come. ”
After doing all his calculations of setting up an office in US, Subroto went to India again to submit a feasibility report to RBI for foreign exchange. They requested for 32,000 dollars for office and recurring expenses. But RBI offered only $10,000 saying, “How could Wipro be given foreign exchange when it had no trace record of earning through exports.”
The idea to open a proper office was given up instead it was decided for the time being Subroto will run operation from home, hustle for projects, earn some money and then go back to the RBI once Wipro’s export earning had improved.
In August 1991, Suborto with his family shifted to US and started the work from his home. He got help from many people like Som Das, Atul Vijaykar, Debasish Ghosh etc who help him to get Apple, Intel, VLSI and Tandem as their clients. Later Sun Microsystem also came in the list.
There is a story about how he got Sun. Ashok Soota fixed an appointment for Subroto with the assistant of Walt Brown, who used to be the top man for Sun Microsystem in Singapore. He met Tom Best. He said,”I do not even know where India is”. Subroto began to draw world map for which he thanks his father who initiated in him to draw maps and pointed where India is on world map. That was the beginning of Wipro and Sun relationship which went strength to strength even after Tom left.
What is Successes?
Finally a Wipro’s office was set up in US and there were 100 engineers now settled with their families and were paid handsomely. But during this time, Subroto’s father expired. He recalls some of the sweet memories of his father. His father used to call him Chote Lal. According to Subroto, “Father was extremely gentle with me during the very few transgressions in my childhood.” He recalls one such incident. Subroto got into borrowing Biddis and smoking. His brother reported that to his father. What Subroto did was shocking but what his father did was even more shocking for Subroro. His father said, “If that is wahat he wants, I will send him away to an ashram scholl and he can smoke there as much as he likes”. Father did not bring up the sunject with me ever again. I couldn’t look him in the face for many days. Sometimes, not handing out the punishment when it is most expected is the best way to bring lasting experience.
Learning To Listen
In this chapter, Subroto talks about Dr. Sridhar Mitta who he respected as a friend, philosopher and guide. He completed his masters from IIT and his doctorate degree from US. He was responsible for the set of Wipro’s R&D division from scratch. Before Wipro, Dr. Mitta was working with Electronic Atomic Research Centre.
Subroto was greatly influenced by him. From him he learned many things. Like, “The first rule of managing is to listen. This is something most bosses find difficult to do beacuse they do not know that in order to listen, you must first suspend all judgement. Next is the meaning of humility. To be a good leader, one must first be a good human being. Dr Mitta tells one thing while it takes time to build perception, it takes even longer for the perception to change.
Who Is a Good Leader
After Dr Mitta who taught Subroto the qualities of good manager, from Ashok Soota he learned how to be a good leaders. Ashok Soota is an impeccable leader. He has no ego. He carnies his own bag, stays in fifty dollar a day hotel when travelling abroad, always insisted everyone call him by his first name, paying the same level of attention whether the mail is from the junior most employee or a fortune 500 client.
Ashok says,” Leadership is about personal character. It is important for any leader to have the highest sense of fairness in personal and professional dealings.” Ashok taught me a leader must not take decisions under fraught circumstances, Always insist on some more time, stepping away from the moment of high emotion. No decision is without risk, but when you take the time to think through, you take very few regrettable decisions.
But the most important lesson I learnt from him was that all battles should be based on principles. Time and again I have seen him coping with powerful opponents whi have has the capability to inflict significant damage. But Ashok continued fighting on the strength of his principles. And in most cases, the man prevailed.
The Entrepreneur as Leader
Subroto learned his lesson on leadership from an entrepreneurship standpoint from Azim Premji. From Premji, I learned the power of simplicity and forthrightness. His simplicity comes out in the way he writes, speaks, dresses, eats and addresses issues. You never has to wonder what is on his mind, for he speaks his mind. Many managers think that overtly simple things are not impressive enough. But the more we complicate the message, the more difficult it becomes for people to understand it. Lesser the understanding by the team, higher is the inability to follow the leader.
A leader’s job is to focus on what is delivered, not on what a person’s quirks are. Competence to do a job has far greater weight age than personal reverence. There is this senior manager who used to criticize Premji on his face. But still Premji remain unruffled since he delivers on his commitment on consistent basis. For him retaining the right and potential candidate was always more important. So the signs of great leaders are their capability to retain talent and not to get insecure when surrounded by top performing team.
When we look to hire people, we invariably look for sameness. It is much more comfortable. But progress requires intelligent friction, push back, points and healthy counterpoints.
Coping with Mid-Life Crisis
In May 1997 Subroto turned 40. He was chairman of sales an marketing council, chairman of information system council, on the board of Wipro GE Medical System and corporate vice president of RD. He was at the heights of professional career yet he was not happy.
Now looking back, Subroto realizes that there was the transition in his life from the level of confidence to the period of unsurety which every person goes through in his life after the age of 40. Dr Elliot Jacques first time coined teh term as mid-life crisis. This is a period of self doubt. What am I value adding? Is all that I’m doing really worth the effort? How well I’ve done professioanlly and monetarily. Many do not realize that they are making not just a professional transition but a mid-life transition. In acute form, it is called the mid-life crisis.
Even Subroto was going through this mid-life transition and vulnerability of age he resigned from Wipro and joined Lucent Technologies which Subroto doesn’t consider to be a good decision.
The Pain of Re-birth
Joining Lucent was pianfully bad decision on the part of Subroto. The profile of his work did not turned out as he was given the impression and secondly he was tired of the internal politics of the company. But working at Lucent gave him enough insight that India is opening to software technology and the idea to start on his own.
On 17th June 1998 I reached out to Krishna Kumar, chief executive of electronic commerce division. I had great admiration for KK and watched him work for a distance and felt that the two will make a great team. We met and decided to create a aspirational organization that would be higher up the value chain, value centric, socially connected and based on the principles of shared wealth creation. The idea of MindTree germinated that day.
The Joy of Reborn
The excitement was brewing between Subroto and KK. They were meeting everyday for further discussion about their dream company. When something you wish to do from all your heart things began to take shape automatically. One link after another keep joining so much so it appears to be a dream. Namakkal Parthasarathy an ex Wipro colleague came into the picture as the third co founder. Subroto co incidently met an ex-colleague Anjan Lahiri who became the fourth co founder of the company. Through Anjan came MindTree got two more of its founders Kamran Ozair and Scott Staples. Subroto also roped in his Lucent colleague Rostow Ravanan as a finance expert. They all met together to discuss about the mission, vision, values and differentiation for the yet-to-be born corporation.
Subroto’s old US friend Som Das and Sudhir Sethi showed interest and enouraged us to fine tune the business fine. They played a crucial role in getting the flow of funds required for the company. Som Das also gave a mindblowing piece of information to Subroto. Ashok Soota had decided to leave Wipro to begin something on his own. No one in his senses would have ever imagined Ashok leaving Wipro! Here the most respected person in the industry willing to join hands with us. Ashok brought with him Kalyan Banerjee and Srinivasan Janakiraman.
Som Das who has Walden joined Walden International and V.G. Siddhartha of Global Technology became the lead venture capitalist. We settled the valuation of the company and raised 9.5 million dollars by giving away 44% of the company. We kept aside 16.67 % of the ownership for future employees and the rest was to be held by founders.
All the founders of Mindtree held together in thick and thin. This earned them a lot of respect in the industry. Subroto analyses, “Years later, it became clear to me that professional respect for each other, a shared value system and middle class upbringing is the glue that has held this team together. We all come from very mosdest backgrounds. And all of us are frist-generation entrepreneurs.”
They have chosen the name MindTree for the company from 729 possible names. “A friend of Ashok told us to our delight that MindTree is manovriksha in the Upanishads-the eternal provider of intellectual solutions.” A group of children with cerebral palsy at the Spastic Society of Karnataka were given the responsibility to design the logo of the company. The DNA of the company was imagination, action and joy. Based on it, children designed many logos and among all of them they liked the logo of a seventeen year old Chetan. “He said in support of his work that the upward blue strokes stood for limitless imagination, the red backgrounds denoted action and the yellow were the bubbles of joy. ”
The operation of the company started on 18th August 1999. Ashok Soota was Chairman, I was CEO, KK took on the role of the President of IT services and Jani as President of R&D services. Partha took on the task of delivery for KK’s business Kalyan worked on setting up the training, development and knowledge management functions. Scott, Anjan and Kamran got busy setting up the US operations. The IT business focused on Internet related technology and R&D opted to focus on telecom industry.
Ashok and Subroto met each individual in their company to know their definition about an ideal company and based on it led to the creation of new values for the MindTree kown as CLASS: Caring, Learning, Achieveing, Sharing and Social. These values went on to not only bind us as a people, they proved to be immensely valuable in times of great difficulty.
Leadership in a Time of Crisis
MindTree took off to a great start. In the first year itself they overshot plans and closed the year at 9.5 million dollars. But things wil not remain the same. Dot-com bust, telecom slowdown and a possible US reccesion were in the offing and will pose a testing point for all the co founders.
But before all this make the worst news which made the entire world standstill. The planes were crashed into the World Trade Centre bringing the entire humanity and economy into a turbulent situation. This terrorist tormented the US companies. It brought affect on thers as well as US were the potentail IT clients of Indian software companies. All were hit and MindTree was no exception. It not only afftected the business but also the morale.
In the MindTree office, I could sense an invisible pall of toxic gloom and that needed to be lifted. Business was not the most important item of the agenda on hand. We needed to detoxify the leadership team.
Subroto was sure that there are many questions grappling into the minds which need to be vent out and answered so that they can see through the things and situation. For this he took the help of Raghu Garud who was studying MindTree as a start up organization. He along with his colleague Roger took up the task.
Roger and Raghu suggested that we needed to do three things: ask the leaders to spell out what was on their mind; take them through a famous management case study on leadership in times of disaster; and finally, I would have to show the way forward.
On 20th October 200, we sat around a table, facilitated by Raghu and Roger. Like a dam bursting, the issues poured out from the leaders. Innumerous question poured in concerning about the employment, targets, survival of the company, future, and many other.
Dicsussion went on and on about it. Finally, Raghu and Roger handed out the famous Uruguayan team’s air crash study. In October 1972, an Uruguayan rugby team has chartered a Fairchild F-227 to get to Chile. Flying over Argentina, the plane met with rough weather over the Andes and crashed and many aboard died on a snowbound peak. Survivors went through the 72 days ordeal during which they had to eat the flesh of their dead compatriots in order to stay alive. Through this real story of courage and determination, a powerful leadership lesson emerged.
It was clear to everyone that we were all dealing with something quite akin to an unscripted mountain crash. It also drove home the point that no single leader could us back to civilization. That like 72 days ordeal, we have to take one day at a time.
At the end, I made an hour long presentation titled ‘Leading Continuity’ on the way forward. I felt our leaders needed to focus on sustaining the cash through the long winter, and streamlining our billing and collection to make sure that operational cash flows was not affected. We needed to focus on profitability, cut the flab wherever possible. We need to push more business oversea, go after larger deals, dig deeper with the exisiting large accounts and to leverage like hell. I asked that we acquire new customers in new area and choose our customers well, reskill ourselves, and have fun.
It was around this time Subroto’s mother got seriously ill. He straight went to Bhubaneshwar were she was admitted. She suffered from a massive stroke and chances fro recovery were very dim. Subroto stayed for two weeks before deciding to go back to US. On my way to the airport, I stopped to kiss her goodbye one last time. That is when she simply told me ‘Go Kiss The World’.
Tomorrow Always Comes
The political and economic condition of the world further detoriated led a perfect stage to shut down MindTree. But, Subroto writes, What saved us were Ashok Soota’s unwavering leadership they did not have the word Panci in the lexicon, the alignment of the core team around the values of MindTree, three major clients- Avis, Franklin Templeton and Unilever -were with them and 14 million dollars raised were intact in the bank.
Things started improving a bit. But a bright tomorrow did came for MindTree. It was our deal with Volvo in 2002 changed everything. Volvo has chosen us bacause they wanted to work with a mid size organization.
Subroto and his team went in inrospection mode what companies like Volvo for which they did not get from large serive provider. We narrowed the reason down to three: access, attention, and agility.Large organization engaging a global software partner requires accessibility not to CEO level but at the level of operating people; attention to what may be their business-critical and time-sensitive and agility to rapidly create custom solutions. They took this message and won many clients including AIG. There research work on short range wirless also started to show results. We started licensing our Bluetooth protocol stack technology to companies like Sony in Japan, Cherry in Europe, and Silicon Wave in the US.
Building Emotional Infrastructure
Subroto never wished to build a company which is there just to earn profit and follow a hire and fire policy. Every individual worked for the company were leaders and he always strive to develop leardership quality in them. He endearvour to build an organization with a unique culture were people worked as they would have worked for their own company.
For this Subroto emphasized that building organization is akin to the creation of infrastructure : the physical, the intellectual, and the emotional.
The first is the easiest to comprehend and create. Put monet on the ground and you will have it.
Intellectual infrastructure needs thought, leadership and engagement. It consist of your system, processes, methodologies, and assests like intellectual property in the form of trademarks, patents, copyrights etc.
What makes a corporation truly memorable is its emotional infrastructure. It is the collection of all the emotional assests of the organization. It is the shared consciousness and the soul of the enterprise.
Building the emotional infrastructure is the most difficult. During the process, we realized that there are eight keys parts to building emotional infrastructure. These are: leadership proximity, unique rituals that communicate the idea of the organization from one group to another, rich commuication, alternative support networks for people, bonding through adversity, vision, values and building a sense of exclusivity. Among the eight, the most difficult to build is values.
New people who came on board sometimes brought a lax attitude towards integrity. Despite Ashok personally speaking to each new MindTree mind on CLASS, we found inadequate internalization. It became increasingly common to fake resumes or overstate past earning in order to land a better pay packets. At one stage we terminated the services of 80 people in a single year for tempering with their past employment information.
Subroto and comapny decided to take immediate action on this and publishes a book and distributed it publically stating the instances of value transgression and their low tolerance on such issues. It helped a great deal to discourage the inflow of undesirable talent.
Between 2004 and 2007 was the best period for MindTree. All their hard work was paying off. MindTree was moving from strength to strength. They work with many different companies and on different projects. In March 2006, they crossed the 100 million dollar digit and at the same time they also baceme the youngest entrant into the MAKE club(Most Admired Knowledge Enterprise).
During this time also the founders started thinking about entering the capital market and be listed. After six months of meticulous planning, MindTree IPO was openedon 14th February, 2007 and did very well.
On 1st April 2008, Subroto step down as the CEO of MindTree and instead gave himself a new challenge as a Gardener. I wanted to focus on creating leadership capacity with the top hundred people at MindTree. I wanted to work at the grassroots level with MindTree’s 45 communities of practice that are voluntary group fostering innovation. I was now ready for a life of servany leadership.
Chapter 24 & Chapter 25
Life ‘s Personal Angles & Go Kiss the World
These two chapters deals with Subroto’s learning lessons. Something which he learned by many coming in touch with people whom he calls his personal Angels and some lessons which life taught him.
Sometimes key lessons has been delivered to me in a mysterious manner. An unusual individual, a personal angel, has come to tell it in the passing- afew words of wisdom, an allegorical narrative, an incident from their lives.
The officer who asked Subroto the question on Diego Garcia told him, “Son, never join the army, never join the navy, neverjoin the air force.” Subroto says that he was not made to join military which the officer understood very well.
Subroto’s next Angle is a simple mother whom he met on his way to airport. She said, “All that good parents can do is inculcate in their children the sense that when they make a choice, they also choose the consequence.”
An old man in his 80s told Subroto the ebst wisdom words. He said,”Never think of retiring. When you get old, begin to reduce your work. Work less. But do not give up work.”
His most recent angle was his landlord at New Jersey. He told him, “Open you mind before you open your mouth.”
Subroto also shares some of his lessons learned in the course of his life.
It’s all in the mind
An idea or a dream how small or big it is generates from the mind. One need to believe in it and breathe life into that idea to make it see the day light.
The Power to receive
Life gives same thing to many people but it is the capability of the receiver to make the best out of it.
To get, you must first give
People you give generously, life returns the double of the same thing to them.
Connect with people
People who empathize with others can actually builds an emotional connection. Leaders with this quality excels both in the personal and professional life. Such people also aspires other to scale up.