New Delhi, October 14
Septuagenarian 'creative strategist' Gurpal Singh Rattan talks about the most essential skills and traits needed in an executive to build a high-performing career and lists 10 crucial steps for achieving success in his debut book.
In "10 Steps to the Boardroom: Climb Your Way to Success", the industry veteran shares his journey and hopes readers will use his book as a "guiding light to achieve your dream of reaching the boardroom, as I did".
In today's day and age, when there is so much competition and nepotism that is being spoken about, one has to wonder: Does talent and merit have a chance? In Singh's opinion, they do.
Each chapter in the book, published by Penguin Random House India, deals with one specific quality that a CEO is required to have and is accompanied with a worksheet next to it.
The 10 steps the author suggests are: setting expectations; staying positive and have patience; unlearning to learn; staying in the limelight; focusing on results through teamwork and delegation; learning beyond own area of specialisation; grabbing critical and underperforming areas and showing results; building a strong network; creating an opening for yourself; and keeping marketing yourself for the top job.
He also lists 10 golden rules in the boardroom which he wants an individual to print and paste on the soft board on his or her first day. These are: don't be petty or vindictive; take up a meritocratic approach; reprimand in private and praise in public; keep your word; your communication skills matter; lead by example; don't let success or failure get to you; express gratitude and maintain a positive attitude; discipline is essential to your success; and celebrate all victories.
According to Singh, getting to the top is a long marathon that one will invest in throughout his or her career.
"Staying there is a whole different ball game. You might be there for a couple of years or a decade. Whatever the duration of your stint, aim to leave a positive impression and hand it over to your successor as an improved version," he writes.
Singh, who had a 31-year tenure with the Tata Family, says his golden rule in life has always been to see the good in situations and have a humane approach.
"Just because someone else is bad does not mean that you stop being good. Hold your head higher. Vibrate at a higher frequency. Take the first step to reach the last step of the ladder. Enjoy the journey of excellence and success," he suggests. PTI
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He was addressing his monthly ‘Mann Ki Baat’