Robert L. Joss :Top 10 Life Lessons

20 Dec

I love learning and very much wish to share Robert L. Joss, former Dean Emeritus, Stanford Graduate School of Business talk ” Top 10 Life lessons”. Given we have one life, the scope of this talk is huge and given the professor’s illustrious track record in industry and academia. This is a fascinating talk.  For a Bio of Robert L. Joss :

To borrow opening lines from the Stanford Bio:

” Robert Joss has been a long-time student and practitioner of general management and organizational leadership. His interests and work lead him to explore such issues as (a) what makes managers and leaders effective, (b) how can people be developed to be good managers and leaders, and (c) what causes people to succeed or fail in these important roles.”

It is precisely in this context ” how people can succeed or fail in important roles” that this talk is useful for those of us who work in the industry and could immensely find a direction or a compass or a gem from this talk. Not all lives are same nor all life experiences are similar but we can learn immensely from a fruitful and extremely well lived life such as the good professor.  I would highly recommend this talk of  Dean ,Robert L. Joss, GSB.

To summarise from ” Top 10 life lessons” :

  1. Life is like cricket
    9. Life is too short to deal with “bad” people
    8. Run it like you own it
    7. Don’t forget to manage side-ways
    6. Don’t take yourself too seriously
    5. Without fear — there is no courage
    4. Life is full of “character building experiences”
    3. Find the words
    2. Use CAT and GSB learning throughout your life
    1. Don’t forget to renew yourself

These are great pointers. I concur with all of them wholeheartedly. The idea is to be ” To be yourself with lot more skills.” The good professor cites the example of Sir Ernest Shackleton, the great Antarctic explorer and John W. Gardner. To quote John Gardner from a commencement address:

“You can keep your zest until the day you die. If I may offer you a simple maxim, “Be interested.” Everyone wants to be interesting, but the vitalizing thing is to be interested. Keep your curiosity, your sense of wonder. Discover new things. Care. Risk. Reach out.

Learn all your life. Learn from your failures, from your successes. I know that some of you are alittle frightened – more than a little – of what’s ahead. You know a lot – perhaps too much – about the ways in which lives get messed up. Bright illusions aren’t your problem. But someone said,
“Life is an error-making and error-correcting process.” When you hit a spell of trouble, ask yourself, “What is it trying to teach me?”
I enjoyed this talk by Dean Robert L. Joss immensely and as the good professor alludes in the talk, life is full of ” character building experiences” ( Read challenges) this talk may just help us in navigating those situations with little more  dexterity,preparation and skill..
To quote my favorite actor Nasserudin shah from a interview ” As Hamlet said ” the readiness is all“…”
Please do refer this talk for good practical tips and useful pointers for work situations.
Have a bright sunday dear friends!
Love, Suresh

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