Saturday, July 16, 2016

Slice of Work #7 — A B-School Called Attitude

Years ago, I had joined a hospitality firm. A fantastic organisation: A positive culture that was all pervasive. Vibrant and young! I had all the badges of a soldier from a top B-school and was wearing it proudly for all to see. A really stupid thing to do as I later realized much later.

I was keen on bringing good talent (read MBAs) they joined too, but the sales started to go downhill. There was a sense of loss all around. Our dynamic business leader called for an open house of our sales-force and had them speak openly about the situation. One of them mentioned that the firm was getting crowded by the MBA-types and since they did not have an MBA they were perceived to be low performers. I was summoned by the leader and had a chat.

That was how a program called Core Management Skills was born. This would instill the MBA skills in great schools. A wonderful training leader and some great trainers led the program. The first batch of the CMS programs was outstanding. They ratcheted up their contributions several-fold and things started to brighten and sales started climbing again. Much later, I left the firm. What I carried was the sense of winning and teaming that the program generated. The attitude of winning together.

Fast forward – I landed in the US on a Friday bumped into a CMS grad! We were excited! By the weekend, a bunch of them flew down from various parts of the US and we had a great time. All of them were doing really well. Some were successful businessmen and some, VPs of large organisations. And as I sat on the plane on the on the long flight home, it occurred to me that there was something magical I had seen. I learnt that what matters is what we do with what we learn. And it is not at an MBA school at all. The school of experience and attitude matters more.

Never judge a person by just his college credentials. Talent matters and talent with a winning attitude matters more. For, many a successful person hardly went to portals of knowledge. Life gives back to you what you put into it. This was my best learning ever from the batch from the grads of a B-school called Attitude.