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Interview on Leadership by Shailesh Thaker at Publicservice UK
November 29, 2008
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Dr. Shailesh Thaker - Management Guru India

A world renowned human potentialist, HR guru and management educator Dr Shailesh Thaker believes that leadership is demonstration, not definition. His specialist talents include mind management, professional development, managerial effectiveness, creativity and creative problem solving. Here, he answers 10 questions about his career so far.

How did your career begin?
My career began in September 1989. I had a training workshop at Surat, Gujarat in India called ‘Train the trainer’; a tough three day programme since there were a lot of us and we had to work through the day and night. The programme transformed me, however, and gave me the direction to make a career as a HR guru.

What are your greatest inspirations?
My greatest inspirations are Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Ghandi. My personal mission statement is: “To inspire people and to help them to identify and enhance their potential so that they can achieve the goals of their life.”

What is your philosophy on life?
My philosophy on life is to live in the present. The past never equals the future and each day is a new challenge.

In your opinion how can we underpin success?
Success depends on passion. You have to be passionate about your work, love your work and work with love.

What is your vision for world success and prosperity?
It is a way of life. The world should focus on new horizons and not be limited by the constraints of every day life. The distance between rich and poor creates a lot of problems for humanity and we should aim to achieve greater balance to prevent this. The world needs to be balanced but this should not compromise the goals of success and prosperity.

What are the determining links between time and purpose?
Time is used in different contexts in different parts of the world so I think one should focus on the present and give 100% to every moment, and every year one should compare and contrast with previous years. I think that can make every moment more meaningful.

You are recognised the world over. Who recognised you first, yourself or others?
The key to success is knowing you can do it. I recognised myself first then gradually other people came to recognise my potential and supported my goals. Confidence is key to the whole success equation.

To what extent does success depend on others?
Success is more connected with yourself than others. There are things within your control that you need to control. There are obviously things beyond your control such as governments, organisations and time that can hinder your progress, so what you should focus on is your internal resources. Leadership is inside-outside, it is the ability to project that which is most important, but also that you project what is inside you. One should focus internally, and then externally everything will fall into place.

How should leadership be measured?
Leadership should be looked at as 360 degrees; and travelling in both directions. It is a circle of trust. Trust yourself and others and in turn others will trust you; this is the foundation of leadership and success.

Which matters most: inspiration or perspiration?
Knowledge is the basic inspiration for everybody. One learns and then one applies. The application of the knowledge requires work. Application of knowledge is where the success lies. If the knowledge is not applied, then it is useless. So it is both inspiration and perspiration that matter.

Online Link

Official Website

About author

Dr Shailesh Thaker

Dr. Shailesh Thaker is a world-renowned management thinker and trainer on organizational behavior and development. He is the CLO of Knowledge Plus Inc., a highly reputed training firm based in Ahmedabad, India, helping organizations to achieve international benchmarks in management practices.

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