Tag Archives: work life balance

Internal and External Successes

This an addendum to this series, I want to say a few more words about success in life. If you cannot quite achieve it, what do you do? Cheat like crazy! Continue reading

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How to be Successful in Life?

When I talked about the dimensions of success, I used the word dimension with an ulterior motive. I want to define success for you in a formal way. You see, an entity that has many dimensions is a space, similar … Continue reading

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Dimensions of Success

From the first post in this series, it looks as though money is an important dimension in how we define success in life. Here is a look at other possible dimensions of success. Continue reading

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Definition of Success

In this short series, I am going to tell you something immensely useful. How to be successful in life? Before giving you my recipe, we have to make sure that we are on the same page. What do we mean by success? Here are some possible definitions. Continue reading

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Are You an Introvert?

Take a quiz to see if you are an introvert or an extrovert – a techie or a manager. Continue reading

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Was Yours, Now Mine

This article is a follow-up to my last post on what was troubling my conscience. This is also a rant on the modern capitalism of the corporate era, where we have all become tiny cogs in a giant wheel inexorably rolling on to nowhere in particular, but obliterating much in the process. Continue reading

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Ridiculous, Annoying and Embarrassing

When our kids turn 13, we turn ridiculous. How do we handle it? Continue reading

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An Office Survival Guide

Pointers in surviving the corporate jungle. Newspaper column in Today on 14 June 2008.

[...] In the unforgiving, dog-eat-dog corporate jungle, you need to be sure of the welcome. More importantly, you need to prove yourself worthy of it. Fear not, I am here to help you through it. And I will gladly accept all credit for your survival, if you care to make it public. But I regret that we (this newspaper, me, our family members, dogs, lawyers and so on) cannot be held responsible for any untoward consequence of applying my suggestions. Come on, you should know better than to base your career on a newspaper column! [...] Continue reading

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How Friendly is too Friendly?

Newspaper column in Today on March 1, 2008.

We all want to be the boss. At least some of us want to be the big boss at some, hopefully not-too-distant, future. It is good to be the boss. However, it takes quite a bit to get there. It takes credentials, maturity, technical expertise, people skills, communication and articulation, not to mention charisma and connections. Even with all the superior qualities, being a boss is tough. Being a good boss is even tougher; it is a tricky balancing act. One tricky question is, how friendly can you get with your team? [...] Continue reading

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When the Going Gets Tough, Turn Around!

How to turn around gracefully? Newspaper column in Today on 19 Jan 2008.

Elton John is right, sorry is the hardest word. It is hard to admit that one has been wrong. Harder still is to find a way forward, a way to correct one’s past mistakes. It often involves backtracking. [...] Continue reading

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Rumour Mills

On how to handle rumors at the work place. Newspaper column in Today on 27 Oct. 2007

[...] There is a city underground. Parallel to the world of corporate memos and communication meetings, this rumour city trades information, often generating it as needed. [...] Continue reading

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Stress and a Sense of Proportion

Newspaper column in Today on 20 Oct. 2007.

How can we manage stress, given that it is unavoidable in our corporate existence? Common tactics against stress include exercise, yoga, meditation, breathing techniques, reprioritizing family etc. To add to this list, I have my own secret weapons to battle stress that I would like to share with you. These weapons may be too potent; so use them with care. [...] Continue reading

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Knowledge Silos

Newspaper column in Today on 29 Sept. 2007.

[...] Isn’t there a danger lurking behind our habit of demanding super specialized silos of knowledge? One obvious danger is the loss of synergy and potential innovation. A case in point — a particle physicist at the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) faces the problem of accessing various files on different computers and networks. Being conversant in computing issues, the physicist devices a nice way of describing the file (or, as it is known now, the resource) and suddenly the first URL (Universal Resource Locator) is born. The rest is history — we have the World Wide Web, the Internet. Fifteen years later, you have e-commerce and YouTube! [...] Continue reading

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Internet Reading

Newspaper column in Today on 15 Sept. 2007.

[...] In high school, I used logarithm tables to work out results in physics and chemistry experiments. Calculators were not allowed. Though inconvenient, this practice honed my arithmetic skills — skills that calculators and spreadsheets have eroded by now. Similar erosion is taking place in our reading skills as well. We don’t read to retain information or knowledge any more. We search, scan, locate keywords, browse and bookmark. The Internet is doing to our reading habits what the calculator did to our arithmetic abilities. [...] Continue reading

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Married to the Job — Till Death Do Us Part?

Newspaper column in Today, 8 Aug. 2007.

Stress is as much a part of our corporate careers as death is a fact of life. Still, it is best to keep the two (career and death) separate. This is the message that was lost on some hardworking young souls here who literally worked themselves to death. So do a lot of Japanese, if we are to believe the media. [...] Continue reading

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Spousal Indifference — Do We Give a Damn?

Newspaper column in Today, 28 July 2007.

[...] The conversation between two tired minds usually lacks an essential ingredient — the listener. And a conversation without a listener is not much of a conversation at all. It is merely two monologues that will end up generating one more setback to whine about — spousal indifference. [...] Continue reading

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How Much is Talent Worth?

Newspaper column in Today on 21 July 2007 on talent shortage in Singapore.

Singapore needs foreign talent. This need is nothing to feel bad about. It is a statistical fact of life. For every top Singaporean in any field — be it science, medicine, finance, sports or whatever — we will find about 500 professionals of equal caliber in China and India. Not because we are 500 times less talented, just that they have 500 times more people. [...] Continue reading

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Performance Appraisal — Who Needs It?

Newspaper column in Today on 14 July 2007.

We go through this ordeal every year when our bosses appraise our performance. Our career progression, bonus and salary depend on it. So we spend sleepless nights agonizing over it. In addition to the appraisal, we also get our key performance indicators or KPIs for next year. These are the commandments we have to live by for the rest of the year. The whole experience of it is so unpleasant that we say to ourselves that life as an employee sucks. [...]
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Handling Goodbyes

First newspaper column in Today, 7 July 2007 (07/07/07 :-)) on handling staff resignations.

Hold on to your pants, your key staff has just tendered his resignation — your worst nightmare as a manager! Once the dust settles and the panic subsides, you begin to ask yourself, what next? [..] Continue reading

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How to Live Your Life

If you are not quite sure how to live your life, let me tell you how. Just kidding, it is not my place to decide for you what your life should be. Then again, I can certainly share my thoughts on the issue on my blog, right? Continue reading

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