Vijay Eswaran is a successful entrepreneur, motivational speaker, and philanthropist as well as the author of the best-selling book In the Sphere of Silence. He is the founder of a multimillion-dollar global business and is a well-known thought leader in Asia who has been listed in Forbes as one of Asia’s Top 50 philanthropists. He is also on the advisory board of the World Economic Forum’s Global Growth Companies and a regular speaker at WEF’s annual meeting in Davos.
Think, observe, listen, and breathe twice as much as you speak.
A beggar lives from meal to meal. A farm worker lives from week to week. A landlord lives from month to month. A nobleman lives from year to year. A king lives at least a decade at a time. An emperor lives a hundred years at a time – planning for three generations.
Silence helps you differentiate between the important and the urgent.
If what you are doing today has an impact in five years, it is important. If what you are doing today has an impact in ten years, you have begun your life’s journey.
During your time of silence, there are three segments: 1. Do a post-mortem on what you could have done better yesterday, look at the day ahead, then plan for the week and year. 2. Do 10-20 minutes of reading from material that will change your thinking and make a difference in your life. 3. Spend 5-10 minutes of prayer or meditation.
Have a group in your organization (Plan B) that essentially competes against your main business (Plan A).
The role of a contrarian is very important. Find the contrarians around you and hear what they have to say.
QUESTIONS TO INSPIRE US TO ACTION
What is some lesson, saying, or experience that continues to influence your leadership to this day? Be the change you want to see in the world.
Use three descriptors to finish this sentence: “A leader is…” Someone who is always there, someone who leads from the front, and someone who stands for the principles he believes in.
What is a question that leaders should be asking either themselves or others? Am I better than who I was yesterday?
What book would you recommend to leaders? The Story of My Experiments with Truth by Mahatma Gandhi
If you could get every listener to start doing something THIS week to help them be a better leader, what would it be? Take an hour to yourself every day in the morning.
As a general life principle, is it better to ask “why?” or “why not?” “Why not?” There are no limitations to what you can achieve.