Lessons from the Past 102: Values and the Manager - Timeless Principles-2
#5 A Life without Problems Is Impossible 
Most of us are looking for an ideal life, where we will encounter total happiness and contentment without any clouds of sorrow. But this never happens. Perhaps it happens in novels, unrealistic films and short stories. But not in real life! Life is always a graph of high and low points, of peaks and valleys. Some of us may have longer periods of peaks and shorter intervals of valleys. For others, it may be the other way around. But we all have our due share of both, whether we are born rich or poor, intelligent or dull, handsome or ugly, brown or white. 
Have you not seen very wealthy industrialist families with only two children having a massive fight over the wealth they want to inherit – and the large poor families in our villages, who have little to eat for the six children, yet warm and loving as a family?
Happiness comes with both health and wealth – but none of us will ever have both all the time from birth to death. The sooner we realise this, the better. We will be better prepared to face life all the time.
The time is always right to do what is right – Martin Luther King Jr
#6 No Matter What Others Say, You Never Stop Learning
There will be pessimists and cynics who keep telling you that the world is a cruel place. That merit really gets you nowhere. That everywhere it is now a question of how you can buy your way through with either money or influence or both. That the boss goes by how many favours you have done for him, rather than how well you have done your work. And a few bosses even expect your wife to lick the boots (slippers) of the boss’s wife!
There are others who will tell you that there is nothing new in the world. That you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. That all supposed new knowledge is ‘old wine in new bottles’. But the world is changing so fast. Technology is being updated every day, not just every year. New concepts are being put forward and old theories disproved. It is a fast-changing world. At least 70% of the products you use today were not available 50 years ago. Unless you keep learning and keep abreast of what is going on, in your own field as well as in the general environment, you will be outdated and soon become obsolete.
This explains why there is so much concern at present with artificial intelligence (AI) and the media is full of features on this every day. It shows how toilets and bathrooms have evolved to become mostly touchless, from opening the door, to washing your hands with soap and water and drying your hands later—all using rays!
The time is always right to do what is right – Martin Luther King Jr 
#7 Change Is Taking Place All the Time and You Must Welcome It
Most people don’t. They prefer the familiar, standard routine with everything in its place. People sometimes don’t even like to change their homes to bigger houses and better surroundings, because of the fear of the unfamiliar. It is only the positively oriented who welcome change and then join them. They are among the first. They are the change agents. They realise that ‘the only permanent feature of life is change’.
Change also involves learning or relearning which most people resent. But the change agent does not resent it, in spite of the trouble it involves. He understands and accepts the fact that he must welcome change. And he keeps marveling at the fact that he can now see the slot where he is parking, on the screen on the dashboard, and this makes it safer; marvels at the fact that the car changes gears automatically; that the car screen also shows the route map and where there is likely to be a traffic jam and what alternate route he should now take; that now they have driverless cars, which he has not yet used; that the newspaper shows UP having a per capita income of Rs80,000 - the second lowest in the country, and on a later page in the same paper is a full page ad inviting entrepreneurs to UP which will provide the best infra to new enterprises!
# 8 You Must Choose Optimism instead of Pessimism
It is so easy these days to be pessimistic. The exam papers are leaked out and sold. There is cheating at exams. You can’t get admission into professional colleges even with 90% marks. The open category is becoming smaller with every year. Jobs are only obtained by influence. Fast progress in one’s career needs a godfather. The country is going to pieces. There is corruption everywhere. The old sense of ethical values has totally vanished. The price of necessities is spiralling! All this is enough to depress any normal human being. But it can’t be allowed to happen. As Henry Thoreau said, “Men were born to succeed, not to fail.” A person with a positive attitude looks at the bright side of things and moves forward. He looks for ways and means to bring about changes and improve the environment. Instead of being totally influenced by others, he makes an effort to influence others. Often, he asks himself: ‘What can I do about it'?
All the time we see or read about examples of people who have done something about it! There is the young man in his teens who was a helper to his father, selling local snacks in a Mumbai suburb, who has emerged as an outstanding batsman, and now plays for the country in international test matches. He has now earned enough in just a few years to buy an upmarket apartment for nearly Rs50 million! There is another young man from a Mumbai slum, the largest in Asia, who is the first from the area to be selected in the UPSC exam and will join the bureaucracy. And there are many, many more – besides the prime minister who was once working as a helper at a railway tea stall! They all chose optimism instead of pessimism!
The time is always right to do the right thing - Martin Luther King Jr 
(This is an excerpt from The Winning Manager by Walter Vieira, published by Sage and available on Amazon, with his 15 other books)
(Walter Vieira is a Fellow of the Institute of Management Consultants of India- FIMC. He was a successful corporate executive for 14 years and then pioneered marketing consulting in India in 1975. As a consultant, he has worked across four continents. He was the first Asian elected Chairman of ICMCI, the world apex body of 45 countries. He is the author of 16 books, a business columnist and has been visiting professor in Marketing in the US, Europe, and Asia for over 40 years. His latest books are ‘Marketing in a Digital/Data World’ with Brian Almeida and ‘Customer Value Starvation Can Kill’ with Gautam Mahajan. He now spends most of his time on NGO work and is presently Chairman, Consumer Education and Research Society, India)
Free Helpline
Legal Credit