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Monday, December 31, 2012



How Ela Bhatt created a pipeline of ‘blue blouse’ leaders that would be the envy of most corporates

At first, Ela Bhatt refuses to be interviewed for this story. It's been 15 years since she stepped down from the Self Employed Women's Asscociation (Sewa), she says, so it's best I leave her out of it and meet the new people at the helm instead. When this is gently conveyed to me by one of the new people at the helm, I'm confounded. You can't be serious, I say plaintively. How can I do a story on Sewa without Ela Bhatt? But as the appointments with the other key women at Sewa fall into place one by one, I realise they are serious. I arrive in Ahmedabad without a plan to meet with Elaben. Mirai Chatterjee, one of the senior-most people at Sewa and the one who helps co-ordinate the appointments, tells me, "We've never had a culture of one supreme leader at Sewa. Elaben believes in collective leadership. That's why she wants you focus on the present day leaders."
    It takes some persuasion to melt the collective Sewa heart, but I finally do get an appointment with Elaben on my second day in Ahmedabad. It clashes with a long-scheduled meeting with the chairman of one of the city's largest corporates, but he graciously adjusts when told it's for Ela Bhatt. So it is that I make my way to 'Toy House', her residence, located in an enclave that has managed to survive Ahmedabad's rapid urban development.
    At 80, Elaben has lost none of her energy, or her puckish sense of humour: "I did not want to wait till people started saying buddhi theek se sun nahin salti, dekh nahin sakti (the old lady can't hear, can't see). I completely stopped going to the Sewa office when I retired in 1997. If I went, everyone would come to me and the new leaders would not get attention. And I am so pleased with the way things have turned out. Our original 'white blouse' leaders have now made way for 'blue blouse' leaders. All the members of Sewa's executive committee are now from the working class."
    The white blouse (as in white collar) cadre at Sewa includes women like Mirai Chatterjee, who joined the organisation 30 years ago, right after graduating from Harvard University with a degree in public health. She recalls finding a note from Elaben waiting for on the first day, which simply said "Welcome to Sewa. I hope you enjoy it here." Here was an organisation that aimed to change society by putting working woman at the vanguard. For a true blue feminist, what was there not to enjoy? "I knew it was the place for me, right from the first," says Chatterjee, who is now chairperson of Sewa's insurance cooperative. "The discussions we would have, the deep insights I gained, the whole atmosphere was so powerful. Elaben believed we were not just an organisation, but a movement. She was a mentoring leader, who believed her most important first job lay in creating more leaders."
    Sewa has a number of co-operative institutions in its fold, including a bank, but at its core it remains a trade union, where the supremo is the general secretary, an elected post that Elaben held till 1997, after which it went to Chatterjee and then to other members of the core white blouse team. Now the post has gone to Jyoti Macwan, who comes from a family of agricultural workers in Gujarat's Kheda district, making her Sewa's first blue blouse g-sec.
    I manage to catch Macwan late in the evening at the Sewa Reception Centre just as she's preparing to leave Ahmedad for her home in Anand. "The greatest thing about Elaben is that she makes you feel like an owner," she says. "Our members don't think of Sewa as an organisation run by someone else. Every worker has a feeling of ownership and anybody can take a leadership role. The personalities of our general secretaries have been different over the years, but these details are not so important when you have a common vision."
    Macwan, who has been with Sewa for 26 years, recalls one of her first meetings, where Elaben drew a chart showing what a small percentage of society's wealth was controlled by women, though they formed 50% of the population. "That thought has stayed with me ever since. Elaben told us our goal was to correct this and work towards equal distribution of wealth." she says.
    With a goal that ambitious, who has time for petty differences? The ability to unite women from different classes through a common vision is arguably one of Elaben's greatest successes, one that corporate leaders can learn from. "Ours is a sisterhood," she says. "I have never made distinctions based on class. When I pick someone, it is on the basis of their brains. And I see to it that they work in the field, so they truly understand the needs of the workers."
    Jayshree Vyas was a manager at Central Bank of India, when Elaben asked her if she would consider taking a sabbatical to work with Sewa Bank in 1986. Not one to do things by half, Vyas decided to quit corporate banking and start financing the needs of the poor.
    On her first day, Elaben gave her a desk in the corner of a hall and told her to interact with as many of Sewa's member workers as possible. "As a professional banker, I had to unlearn a lot of things," she says. "Everything here was based on understanding the character of individuals. They had no collateral to offer, they had nothing in writing. But this was a bank, and a small one, so I had to ensure the depositor's money was safe."
    Vyas particularly recalls a meet with one customer, a fruit vender. "She was selling mangoes and I asked her how much she charged. She said she had been selling at Rs 5 a kg, but could now afford to drop the price to Rs 3. When I asked her why, she gave me an amazing explanation, which had to do with having covered her fixed costs and now being able to earn a profit at variable cost, though she didn't use these words. I've learnt more about finance from Sewa's members than I did from corporate clients."
    The bank has always been a project to Elaben heart — she stayed on as its chairperson for a year after resigning as g-sec of Sewa — but true to style, she never interfered too much in its working. "Elaben has this ability look at the macro picture and avoid micro-management, which is something the rest of us find hard," says Vyas. "She would just ask me about a few key indicators. Are loans being repaid? Are we able to pay dividend? Then she would leave the details to us. She had complete trust in the people she selected."
    Elaben not only trusts everybody she deals with, she has a knack for making them feel and know they are trusted. This translates into empowerment and is a huge motivator, one that many corporate chiefs have failed to appreciate. "Everybody has goodness in them, waiting to rise up. Everybody knows when they are doing something wrong. If they persist in doing something wrong, I do tell ask them to go. But our job is to bring out the good part of people," she says.
    Headquartered in an upscale building on Ahmedabad's Ashram Road, Sewa Bank is now looking at the next phase of growth. Elaben's views on this are clear cut: "The challenge is to remain small but be a big force. We have to spread laterally rather than vertically. I would rather have 40 branches of Sewa Bank spread across the talukas, rather than one big branch in the city. I sometimes wonder if the present leadership understands that. They are performance oriented managers, which is a good thing in its own way. I lack that."
    Reema Nanavaty joined Sewa 28 years ago, while working on her Masters degree. Her first assignment was in drought relief and she recalls being given boring liaison work with the government, which left her feeling rather disillusioned with social work. Then she had a meeting with Elaben. "I told her I had cleared the IAS exam and was thinking of joining. She said to me, 'You want to be a collector? Why don't you be a collector here?' She asked me go to Banaskanta district and take charge of Sewa's relief work there. She challenged me and put a lot of trust in me," recalls Nanavaty.
    Nanavaty eventually spent over a decade working in the hinterlands, first appalled by the living conditions and poverty she found there, but then enthused by the indomitable spirit of the rural women she met. Over that time, she moved from one district to another, each time leaving behind a successor from the local women. "You have to live amongst the community you are serving to gain their trust and understand their needs," she says.
    Much of Sewa's rural development work in Gujarat relied on funding through state government schemes. That stopped abruptly after the 2002 riots, when it fell out with the state government over funds being channeled to certain villages at the expense of others on the basis of a communal divide. "It was a tough call," recalls Nanavaty, who is currently director of Sewa's economic development and rural organising wing. "We lost Rs 200 crore of funding and couldn't pay salaries for nine months. But Elaben said it was a choice between sticking to our values or succumbing to pressure. We all agreed we should stand by our values."
    As a trade union and as a co-operative, Sewa understands business and it understands money (hence this long article). In the year that followed its falling out with the state government, Sewa resorted to zero-based budgeting. It may have pared down some activities, but it is now a self-sustaining organisation. Nanavaty is clearly up-to-date with current business issues when she says, "We have a remuneration policy where we maintain a 1:4 ratio between the lowest and highest paid. That means we don't pay as well as most NGOs, so we don't always attract the best talent. But those who do join are passionate about the work Sewa does."
    While Sewa does attract women who are passionate about the movement it represents, it also gets applications from those who just want to be associated with the brand. This set usually drops out after being asked to work with Sewa's members in the hinterlands for a few years. Besides, as a new generation of blue-blouse leaders takes up the reins, Sewa's dependence on the white blouse workers is set to reduce. "Elaben's nurturing style is actually very conducive to growth. She incubates talent. We are constantly building capabilities and skills in order to create leaders who can take charge of new initiatives," says Mirai Chatterjee.
    By its very nature, the collective style of leadership is slow. It involves keeping everyone informed, having lots of meetings and decisions through debate and discussion. Nobody understands this better than Elaben, who says, "It's not an easy process. Managers find it difficult. But in the end, I believe it is worth it. We are organisers and the process is essential to what we represent."
    Subhadraben Patel is an example of the outcome of the collective leadership process. She's just taken charge as chairperson of Sewa's healthcare co-operative, a position that was earlier held by Chatterjee. She speaks no English and only a smattering of Hindi, but that's never been a big problem when she has travelled abroad to Thailand and Sri Lanka for conferences. "I enjoy working in a group. I like the attention we get from the audience when we attend a conference in a group," she says cheerily.
    Subhadraben has obviously grasped an essential truth: symbolism counts. Elaben puts the idea across in a different way, but the insight is the same: "If our working class women go to meet the Prime Minister, it makes no impact. If I go alone, it makes some impact. But when we go to meet the PM together, it makes a great impact."
    Through changing times, Sewa has held closely to another symbol that goes to its Gandhian roots. Its members still wear handloom fabric, though it is no longer cheap. Old timers like Chatterjee and Nanavaty took to it naturally in their salad days and never gave it up. But today's young women are prone to asking why. "You can't shove it down their throats anymore, but you can persuade. Polyester may be cheaper, but it doesn't stand for something, like khadi does," says Chatterjee.
    In Gujarat, the khadi-clad women of Sewa are actually quite a force. Rickshaws never overcharge them and buses tend to stop for them wherever they are. "When you wear khadi you make a statement," says Elaben. "It means you're working with the poor. It means you believe in using local material. It gives you an identity and brings discipline to your life."
    Elaben herself remains a symbol of Gandhian philosophy in action. Today, having handed over Sewa to a new generation of equally committed leaders, she is engaged on other work. She is on the Board of the Reserve Bank of India. She is a member of The Elders, an international organisation of statesmen, peace activists and human rights advocates, brought together by Nelson Mandela in 2007 and is field testing the "100 miles principle" which says that consumers and producers can and should be brought close together so that all primary needs are met within a 100 mile radius. And she plans to write her second book, after We Are Poor But So Many. "I'm busier than before. And I am so glad I don't have to sign papers any more," she says.

1 Remember the vision: the betterment of society through the empowerment of women
2 Understand the customer: live amongst the people you are trying to serve
3 Build the leadership pipeline: a leader's primary job is to create more leaders
4 Create collective leadership: don't allow for a culture of one supreme leader
5 Stress the process: organise meetings, arrive at decisions through discussion and debate
6 Leadership over management: efficiency is good, but not at the expense of the larger goal
7 Empower young people: let people know you trust them to do a good job
8 Focus on key parameters: keeps tabs on a few important things, don't micro-manage
9 Never compromise on values: money is useful, but it's not everything
10 Don't stress salary: there are still people out there who are passionate about a cause
11 The more the merrier: move in large groups — it creates impact
12 Wear khadi: Use the fabric to make a powerful statement wherever you go

Dibeyendu Ganguly CDET121221

ENTREPRENEUR/STARTUP SPECIAL.... Starship Enterprise ..Customer Engagement

STARTUP SPECIAL Starship Enterprise 

Powering Customer Engagement 

Firm has unique platform that does not require customers to fill up forms or carry membership cards

When Aneesh Reddy, Krishna Mehra and Ajay Modani—all alumni on IITKharagpur—quit their jobs to set up Capillary Technologies in 2008, they did so without any concrete business plan. “We were young and had no major responsibilities. So, it was the right time to take the risk,” says Reddy, now the CEO of Capillary, who was earlier with ITC. Mehra was at Microsoft Research and Modani at Danieli India when they took their entrepreneurial plunge. Their gamble has more than paid off, what with the Bangalore-based customer engagement solutions venture—which Capillary ultimately morphed into—having raised $15.5 million (about 85 crore now) in a first round of venture funding in September.
The friends had initially experimented with a few ideas. “Mobile and retail were booming and so we thought of focusing on these sectors,” says Reddy. They first created a traffic management solution for the Kolkata Police but dropped the idea when they realised there was not much revenue potential in the solution.
They then came up with a deal aggregation site. But the team quickly realised that in a post-Lehman world, retailers were more worried about getting customers into stores. “We asked retailers what they needed, what problem of theirs we could address. They all wanted some way of getting customers back in stores,” says 28-yearold Reddy. Armed with a 15 lakh soft loan from their alma mater’s entrepreneurial cell, they went about building a customer engagement platform that did not require customers to fill up forms or carry a membership card.
The customer information is captured incrementally at the billing counter each time he or she shops and the customer’s mobile number is his or her unique identification number.
The database is stored on the cloud and stores can choose to manage their own database or outsource the management to Capillary.
Like other Software as a Service (SaaS) models, the startup also charges a monthly fee of $100 to $500 per store per month. The product was launched in March 2009 and the company acquired its first five customers, including Indus-League Clothing, Indian Terrain, Numero Uno and Madura Fashion & Lifestyle’s People brand, soon after.
Capillary now provides clients analytics based on the data they gather, including details like shopping trends, customer preferences and profiling. Retailers can also run campaigns like sending out offers to a select group of customers through the platform.
Reddy says their most revolutionary product is the instant cross-selling engine, where a customer gets a discount on a product within a store as he is billing other products. “We have seen conversion rates of up to 30%,” says Reddy. The company now has 140 clients, including some big brands like Raymond, Pizza Hut, Puma, United Colors of Benetton, Peter England and Nike.
“When they came to us around three years ago their idea of no form-filling and no membership cards were revolutionary,” says Mrinmoy Mukherjee, director of marketing at Raymond. Mukherjee says their premium memberships have grown six times since they got onto Capillary’s platform. “Around 70% of our sales come from these members.”
In 2009, the company was placed second globally at QPrize, Qualcomm Ventures’ seed fund competition. This fetched them $10,000. In December that year, a handful of angel investors, including former chief executive of Cafe Coffee Day Naresh Malhotra, put in around $500,000 and in January 2011 a further set of angel investors, including Google India’s Managing Director Rajan Anandan, pumped in $1 million. It was following this round of angel investment that the company went international. “Our strategy was simple. We approached our India clients that had international presence,” says Reddy. The company now has clients in 16 countries across Europe, Middle East and South East Asia.
With the $15.5 million venture funding from Sequoia Capital, Norwest Venture Partners and Qualcomm Ventures this year, Reddy says they intend to expand their reach. The company, which is targeting around $7 million in revenue in the current financial year, services 10,000 stores. “We offer a strong value proposition to our clients. There is no reason why we cannot reach 500,000 stores soon,” he says.

PERSONAL TECH/MOBILE APPS SPECIAL..Startups Search for the Right ‘App’titude

 Startups Search for the Right ‘App’titude 

These days, there are mobile applications to service almost every need.
Profile of five such apps that have managed to capture the Indian market’s attention recently

    Ten-year-old Kavya MD attributes the significant improvement in her previously poor maths scores to Tabtor, a locally-developed special education mobile application that works on the Apple’s iOS platform. PrazAs, the firm behind Tabtor, is just one of the myriad start-ups looking to cash in on the ongoing mobile boom, which has seen usage of mobile phones in India skyrocket to about 900 million, driven by a combination of an increasingly wealthy middle-class, low mobile billing rates and the advent of affordable smartphones. “Consumers in India are leapfrogging into mobile,” says Ravi Gururaj, vice-president for cloud platforms group at Citrix Systems. “Smartphones are very empowering.” According to Subho Ray, president of Internet and Mobile Association of India, the country is slated to become one of the biggest players in the global app market by 2016, overtaking even mature markets like the US. “This is no surprise,” says Ray, who expects the Indian mobile app market to be 1,800 crore at the end of this year, pointing out that conditions for the Indian market to become a leader have improved. The Indian app market grew at over 22% last year. App developers have adopted a twopronged strategy, which they feel will allow them to tap into one of the largest consumer markets in the world as well as appeal to the global marketplace, allowing them to monetise their product faster. Rohith Bhat, whose startup Robosoft Technologies created Camera Plus—an app that enhances phone camera functions—expects the domestic market to generate a quarter of his company’s business over the next two years. Robosoft’s revenue for fiscal 2011-12 was about 80 crore. The company now gets 10% of its business from India. “We are tying up with local brands to build the apps for them,” Bhat said. Vishal Gondal, managing director of d igital at DisneyUTV, says that as it is now possible to publish apps on Apple, Nokia and Google platforms “it gets downloaded from any part of the world.” .Profiles of five such mobile apps, across sectors, which captured the market’s attention recently.

PrazAs, a startup founded by BITS Pilani and IIT alumni, developed education-focused Tabtor, whose adaptive learning software is being used by students of 14 schools in India and the US. The company designed the app at its research and development centres in Chennai and Bangalore. “We are as excited as the children,” says Sandhya Khandekar, who teaches maths at GEAR Innovative International School, a school in Bangalore that uses iPads to teach students. “Even those who are not good at the subject are now finishing the problems quickly.” M Srinivasan, founder and chairman of GEAR, said the app assists each student to learn at a comfortable speed. “We are enabling everybody to climb their own mountain. We don’t want to force students to go on the same path and same speed.” The school now plans to customise the app further by including other subjects like English and Science. PrazAs is looking to monetise the app by creating customised versions. It also plans to publish it on the Android platform.

ShopCircle, developed by Bangalorebased data analytics startup Activecubes, helps consumers find prices of products at brick-and-mortar stores, making shopping easier. The app allows a consumer to see all offers within a 10 km range. Rajesh Varrier, CEO and co-founder of Activecubes, says consumers now do not have to spend valuable time scouting for deals—it helps find information and compare prices of the same product sold in nearby retail locations. ShopCircle, which went live three weeks ago, has around 1,000 users in India, according to Varrier. Activecubes aims to make money with the app by tying up with retailers, advertisers and financial institutions. “The product details are on your fingertips and you are not now dependent on the sales people,” Varrier said.

Jana Care, a startup founded by alumni of Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard Business School, helps diabetics. The Bangalorebased startup’s app helps diabetics to check their blood glucose levels and other health parameters by plugging in a sensor—also developed by Jana Care—to their mobile phones. This turns the phone into a cost-effective diagnostic device. Sidhant Jena, an alumnus of Harvard Business School, co-founded the firm with Michal Depa, a researcher at MIT. Tarun Khanna, a professor at Harvard Business School and Devi Prasad Shetty, cardiac surgeon and founder of Narayana Hrudayalaya, are advisors to the firm. The company is planning to release their first product in early 2013, following clinical trials.

For today’s overworked and constantly-on-the-move professionals, indulging passions is often a pipe dream, given the demands of their jobs. It’s a conundrum that MusiGuru wants to resolve. MusiGuru, a mobile application launched by Bangalore-based startup Levitum Software Systems, is a video-based learning platform, where Carnatic music is taught to users. Built on the ubiquitous iOS platform, the app offers users the opportunity to learn music even while mobile. “It’s a storefront for musicians and teachers, who want to sell their content, as well as build their brand,” says co-founder Arvind Krishnaswamy. The start-up, which has been bootstrapped by its founders so far, has worked out a revenue sharing model with musicians on board their platform. There are also plans to tie up with various music colleges to access their content. There has been no institutional funding so far. We may look for it once the company grows to a certain size,” says Krishnaswamy. Started in late-2009, the founders were quick to take advantage of India’s booming mobile telecommunications sector. The increasing penetration of smartphones in India has also helped. “Smartphones have been a proven monetisation platform, and we decided to focus on it in order to get an initial engagement with users,” Krishnaswamy said.

Offering legal high-quality musical content is what differentiates Twaang from its peers, according to the developers of the mobile app’s developers. The online music library app developed by Sound Ventures and launched in November this year, has tied up with close to 50 record labels and musicians to bring their music to listeners globally. “Twaang offers music that is not readily available, but is in high demand. We use an advertising-focused model, and revenue is shared with artistes,” says Vishnu Raned, co-founder of Sound Ventures. The app, which is free, allows users to access 75,000 songs, across 6,000 albums, featuring about 4,000 artistes. Next on the startup’s agenda is to increase the number of songs to one lakh by the end of the year. “We are planning to come out with a premium version of the app in 2013, which will be subscription-based, but ad-free. Users can also listen to tracks even while offline,” Raned said. He expects Sound Ventures to post its first revenue by January, after which the founders will look for institutional capital. “We are in talks with a number of brands. We will need funding, since we are looking to build a team that will focus on design and user interface,” he said.

Biswarup Gooptu and Peerzada Abrar ET121221


The Loyalty Leap 

How to energise the workforce

1. Failure to find the FIT. FIT comes from asking three critical questions: What are my gifts and talents? What am I absolutely passionate about? What needs to be done-where can I make a contribution? When my gifts and talents are aligned with my passion in a job that makes a valuable contribution, I'm happy, alive and having fun at work. Most companies are not very rigorous about matching employee talents with the needs of the company. They're not rigorous about finding the FIT. We talk a lot about wellness, but people who are doing work they are not gifted at and not passionate about are not well; they're mentally and emotionally ill. This contributes to decay and deadness in the organization.
2. Too much emphasis on TITLES versus RESULTS. Lip service is given to engagement and empowerment, but the real deal is command and control. Employees are inadvertently taught the importance of hierarchy in getting things done. The result is a culture of fear where everyone plays to titles instead of doing what they know is right for the business. The Internet just might be the greatest democracy on the face of the earth. If you have a great idea, people follow you. If your content isn't compelling, they don't. Creating a culture of innovation is a lot like the Internet. The best ideas, not tenure, titles and hierarchy, win.
3. Lack of courage to test new ideas.
People's spirits are deadened when the waters of creativity are stagnant. Zero defect cultures foster the kind of cautious inactivity that slows the organization down and makes it sluggish. We can never know our true capacity unless we are encouraged and willing to push the limits and test the boundaries of what we are capable of. Innovation is the result of experimentation and experimentation is the result of risking more and failing faster. This why leaders who create an environment that inspires creativity and ingenuity aren't afraid to reward intelligent failure.
4. Employees who have no voice. People who have no voice don't feel trusted or valued. So, they check out. The true experts in most organizations are those closest to the point of action doing the work. They know where the opportunities lie, they know what market trends are emerging, and they know where waste and redundancies exist.
    Leaders who fail to put the true experts in control of their work create a paternal culture where creative discovery, freedom and responsibility are traded for a reactive, victim-like mentality. Innovation is radical because it not only changes the rules of the game; it's about changing the rule makers.
5. Lack of diversity. We're not just talking about cultural or ethnic diversity; we're talking about diversity of thought and ideas. If you only hang out with people who look and think and act like you do, this doesn't unleash your creativity, it sharpens your prejudice. It takes guts to surround yourself with diverse others. They are often eccentric, weird and difficult to manage. But they are the ones who will draw you out of the comfort zone and take you on an adventure where you can find the NEXT big thing. They will keep it interesting and lively. Innovation feeds on multiple points of view.
6. Employees who embrace a VICTIM mentality. People want freedom, but they seek safety. Far too many people we have met in our travels fail to assume responsibility for their own happiness and well being at work. They assume it is the organization's job to make them happy and content. They assume it's the organization's job to train and equip them to become more marketable. When the organization fails, people jump into the blame frame and start pointing fingers. As this cancer spreads it deadens the spirit of the enterprise.
7. Failure to acknowledge the WHOLE person. Whether it's sick kids, aging parents, planning a vacation, visiting a doctor or dropping off the dry cleaning, life happens when life happens, not just before 8:00 am and after 6:00 pm. Organizations that fail to acknowledge the person behind the software developer or customer service agent fail to acknowledge the distraction that keep these individuals from doing great work. Innovative companies figure out how to eliminate these distractions and make people feel valued. The result is an incredibly unique culture that has a distinct competitive advantage in attracting the best and brightest talent who, in turn, create world-class products and services.
8. Lack of optimism and resilience. No one gets it right in business all the time, but successful companies and leaders have the ability to bounce back from failure. Unsuccessful companies let it take them down. The assumption is that optimism and resilience is something you are born with, you either have it or you don't. The research suggests otherwise. There is plenty of evidence to suggest that optimism can be learned and bred into a culture intentionally.
    Innovation is messy. It doesn't follow a neat, linear path. It offers no guarantees. And, it tests the validity of an idea through trial and error. This is why the "bounce back" factor is so critical. People keep moving forward, trying new things that keeps them invigorated.
9. Inability to celebrate and have fun.
There is a "deadness" in organizations that don't see the value in or don't know how to celebrate. It's amazing how many really cool things can be going on in a company that most people don't have a clue about. Celebration fuels people's fire to do the next great thing, without it heroic contributions are missed and the emotional bonds that wed people's affection and enthusiasm to the company are weakened.
10. No CAUSE to fight for. When the work is defined in terms of a cause what follows is a movement. A healthy level of fanaticism and missionary zeal characterizes the movement. People want to belong to something larger than themselves-something that gives their lives meaning and significance. People who have a direct line of sight between their individual contributions and the cause are more engaged. They see innovation as a necessity, as a way to further the cause.
Drs. Jackie and Kevin Freiberg are best-selling authors of NUTS! Southwest Airlines' Crazy Recipe for Business and personal Success and NANOVATION: How a Little Car Can Teach the World to Think Big and Act Bold.