Book Review: “Full Steam Ahead” – Powered to the hilt!!

Book : Full Steam Ahead!  Authors:  Ken Blanchard and Jesse Stoner

There is so much spoken and written about ‘vision’ for a business. It is almost as-if a war would break out (intellectually) about what the words ‘vision’ and ‘mission’ mean and which is bigger?
This little book titled “Full Steam Ahead” is actually a book about ‘vision’ – I never thought it would be when I looked at the title. But once I started reading it, I realized that this is another little gem that Ken Blanchard and team have given us. There is a philosophical bent to the ideas presented apart from the absolutely logical build-up of the concepts. This combination along with the slight emotional connect through story-telling that the authors have achieved, has made the book un-put-down-able! You will not be able to stop once you start, till you race to the end. In fact I wouldn’t be surprised even if this beats some of the real blockbuster movies hands-down in storyline!
If not anything else, the price of the book is more than worth for just the following pages: Purpose (39), Values (63), Picture of the Future (78), Vision (80), Test of a compelling vision (82) and For Vision to become Reality (120). These six pages captures in essence the message of the book. But reading just these pages is not a substitute to reading the book!
According to the authors, vision is made up of three components (Purpose, Values and a Picture of the Future) and putting these together and implementing it in the present is what makes the difference! I strongly recommend this little book to every person even if they are just toying with the idea of creating a meaningful life – while for every entrepreneur it should be mandatory reading!


Lesson for all Seasons

Seasons change! Yes they have, they do and they always will. Nature doesn’t seem to have any issues with it. As seasons change, nature goes through its cycle. Look at plants, they lose their lustre in one season, glow in another and they don’t seem to worry or bother about it too much. Animals take a step further, they have their good times, move to secure locations when they are frightened and re-appear when either a need arises or they feel safer.

Incoming seasons create benefits for some and spoil the party for some. It is important for the benefactors to realize that seasons change! If they don’t, they will be in for some surprise when tides change. When stated it seems like a paranoid opinion – but look around and you will find numerous examples of the latter.

Seasons change; people benefit – bask in glory and let it ride to their heads, as though the season is here to stay.  So many businesses hailed as the trend-setter, awarded and recognised as best businesses slink into non-existence in matter of just few years.  Wins are as ephemeral as failures – they are neither  the end of your journey nor your sustainable differentiator!  Only when you realise this; would you give yourself a pat, award yourself a smile – but pick up your chisel to drive through the mountain to reach your goal!

No wonder our wise people of the past said “Don’t overdo success and don’t overdo failure – because nothing is permanent.” Hope rationality prevails!

Milestone Fascination

Crossed 15,000 kms in my new Car! Crossed 500 friends on FB! Sending the 100th tweet on twitter! Ticked of all items in my to-do list for the day!

Milestones are important to us. They give us something for aspiring to achieve and something to feel proud; acknowledging and celebrating. The moment we realize we have crossed a milestone, a special feeling comes from inside us; a surge of adrenaline rush follows making us ready as we set upon the next set of milestones.

Even though sometimes milestones can be seen as limitation of sight; reduces foresight by making you concentrate on task at hand; increases stress of needing to complete – but their positive effects simply cannot be removed or sidelined.

If it is so, then why can’t we use this tool to make life more meaningful? Why can’t we set ourselves new milestones and turn them into everyday to-do items which when done will enable us and give us the confidence to take on the next set of challenges?

If you can define, detail, act and achieve milestones, your confidence and self esteem soars and makes you do more. Sounds absolutely simple – so just do it!