We hope that you and your loved ones are doing well in 2015.
This month's issue has a eclectic and we hope valuable set of articles. The leadership biography, by Victoria Yates, is on Baba Amte. He was a passionate activist whose leadership has left a staggering legacy that continues to help and inspire people across India and beyond. In particular, he and his wife Tai did an enormous amount to help people suffering from the terrible disease leprosy.
We have two featured articles. The first is a FREE DOWNLOADABLE BOOK "PLAYING the Game of Life WITH A FULL DECK" byTom Vanderbeck. We are very pleased to be able to offer this. To quote Tom "One can effectively lead and empower others only to the extent that one can demonstrate compassion, mastery, and accountability for self-leadership". The book has been serialised in chapters on the website, though the article below has links to the entire book. Please let us know what you think!
The second is from Jason Phillips on "The Key Advantages of integrating speaking into your business". Some very practical advice. Leaders have to "speak' to their internal teams and Jason's advice that we have published before has been very helpful. Here he takes a different look at speaking as an external business opportunity.
PLAYING the Game of Life WITH A FULL DECK - FREE downloadable book by Thomas Vanderbeck
In an email to me, one of our contributors, Tom Vanderbeck, put forth the notion that "One can effectively lead and empower others only to the extent that one can demonstrate compassion, mastery, and accountability for self-leadership."
I found Tom's message and approach both timely and practical, so I asked him if I could share his insights with our readers. He said "yes". We have therefore been very pleased to offer Tom's new book, serialised in free, downloadable parts.
PLAYING the Game of Life WITH A FULL DECK
A Primer on Compassionate, Proactive Self Leadership and Personal Accountability ... for conversations at the kitchen table
Clearly, others were also impressed by Tom's work.
The FOREWORD was written by Ken Blanchard ("The One Minute Manager"® & "Leading at a Higher Level"). Here's an excerpt from Ken's Foreword:
"Tom offers a unique perspective on self leadership and encouragement for realizing our potentials to create a life of growth, purpose, contribution, sharing, and fulfillment. He will teach you how to transcend "Spiritual Amnesia" and the "Negative Automatic Program" and will offer you practical and proactive skills for personal power."
Here's an extract I like which offers a little more on Tom's approach:
"Many of us have not been aware of two essential components of human consciousness, the Negative Automatic Program, or 'NAP', and Spiritual Amnesia. This doubly unfortunate lack of awareness severely limits our experiences of awakening our personal potentials. I call this way of being 'Not Playing with a Full Deck'. The truth is we were all dealt a full deck of cards for playing the game of life. However, none of us were made aware of the Two Jokers, the NAP and Spiritual Amnesia. When we feel confused, frustrated, and unfulfilled; and conclude that we have not been 'Playing With A Full Deck'; the problem has not been too few cards, but two too many."
The LeaderValues community is already very familiar with some of Tom's practical and well-researched contributions. For example, 'Business Leadership for Industry', 'Ed Norton Contractor Case Study; and 'A Simple Bright White Belt' .
You can now download and read of a series of seven installments.
Foreword by Ken Blanchard, and Chapter One: The Quest to Find Myself
Chapter Two: The Negative Automatic Program
Chapter Three: Spiritual Amnesia
Chapter Four: Transcending the NAP
Chapter Five: Response-Ability
Chapter Six: Recovery from Spiritual Amnesia
Chapter Seven: Self Actualization
"If you are through with dreams, then progress halts"
"Happiness is a continuous creative activity of imaginatively comparing your experiences to things that aren't as good and thereby feeling happy and grateful"
"I took up leprosy work not to help anyone, but to overcome that fear in my life. That it worked out good for others was a by-product. But the fact is I did it to overcome fear"
Key Advantages of Integrating Speaking into Your Business - Jason Phillips
Public speaking is possibly one of the most feared activities, even by professional businessmen. It is also one of the most essential skills to master.
Being the main speaker at an event can provide you with an opportunity to build new relationships and attract new business.
Your speech will allow the first stage of a connection to be formed before you engage in any conversation. A well delivered speech will assure any prospective new clients that you understand your subject and will be able to help them. Public speaking will offer the following benefits to your business.
Adopt a forward thinking attitude
Planning a speech requires you to evaluate what an event is looking for. The easiest way of doing this is to find out what the theme is and how previous speakers have handled it. You will need to obtain a copy of the event guidelines to ensure your speech remains within them. This approach will guarantee you are building your forward thinking skills; you need to understand your market and to prepare accordingly. You also need to look at where your business is going in order to talk about it properly within your speech. A forward thinking attitude is essential to any business leader as you must always be planning ahead and looking at what the market is going to do, not what it is doing now.
Become aware of your marketing potential
Giving a public speech is an excellent opportunity to market your business. You should never dwell on the company. Instead mention it just once or twice and make sure your speech is good enough to have your audience hooked. If you manage this they will seek you out after the speech for more information and potential sale discussions.
Be organized and your speech will be successful
Preparing a speech means that you need to think about your subject, what the company is currently doing and how this will change in the future. In essence, preparing a speech forces you to take a good look at the way you currently operate and why this is the case. This will allow you to see better operating procedures and principles for the future.
Murlidhar Devidas Amte, best known as Baba Amte, was born on the 26th of December 1914 into a wealthy family in Hinganghat. His father worked for the British government in revenue collection and administration within the district and the children grew up in a privileged world. Despite his fortunate position, Amte never conformed to the caste expectations, playing with the children of the servants and not allowing the rules of who he could interact with to impact his behaviour.
After school Amte trained in law and grew a successful practice in Wardha that included representing underprivileged groups. Around this time his political feelings also started to emerge, joining the struggle for freedom from the British Raj and using his profession to defend leaders of the freedom movement from British authorities. Amte also spent time with Gandhi, getting to know the leader and becoming an avid follower of Gandhism for the remainder of this life.
With his wife Sadhana Tai, who also came from a wealthy background, he renounced his money and set up a small community in Warora where the couple lived with untouchables and low caste people. One of the cases that Amte took on was to represent the sweepers' union in a fight over salaries with the local municipality. Sweepers are a caste in India whose job is to clear the human waste that builds up overnight and to dispose of it. In order to understand his clients, Amte worked with them for several weeks, a role that meant carrying baskets of excrement on his head.
It was during this period of the 1940s that perhaps his greatest legacy began. One night when he was walking home from work Amte came across an emanciated man on the side of the road. The man, Tulshiram, had a very serious case of leprosy and was dying from the untreated wounds. Amte reacted by running away. At this time in history there was still no cure but the fear that he felt haunted Amte. However rational a reaction, he couldn't sleep that night thinking about how he had responded. The next morning he went back and built a shelter for Tulshiram, nursing him for several days until he died. Amte recalled this moment as when he found his true calling.
Tai and Amte decided to dedicate their life to working with people with leprosy. Amte travelled to Kolkata and talked his way into the basic training given to doctors about treatment (though at this point it was only treatment of wounds not the disease itself). While there, he offered himself up as a guinea pig. Leprosy only impacts humans, and as such animal research to learn about the disease wasn't possible. Amte was injected with the bacteria but it didn't take, science would later learn that not everyone is susceptible but at the time Amte was exposing himself to huge risk.
Returning to Warora the pair initially began a mobile clinic but soon realised the needs of the population went far beyond wound treatment. In Indian society these people were outcasts at the brunt of society's attitude towards them. The government granted them a plot of land and there they, along with their children and the first six leprosy patients, started Anandwan, a community for those with leprosy, the marginalised, and the disabled. Starting as a hospital the grounds now include a huge infrastructure including a college, school for the blind and deaf, an orphanage, farmland, an old people's home and factories. It is a self sufficient community where individuals can come to live and work in return getting housing and food. Amte and Tai's vision was of not simply helping but empowering people.
Amte was deeply involved in other social causes during his lifetime, starting a satellite project in an underprivileged area that had a large tribal population and working closely to shine a light on environmental and ecological injustices throughout the country. In his lifetime he organised two Unit India movements to try and create greater unity nationally, travelling for years to different towns and promoting the peaceful coexistence of people and with nature.
In 1988, Amte invited leading environmental activists from all over the country to put his weight behind the Bachao Andolan (NBA) movement, who were fighting the uprooting of villagers and farmers by the Sardar Sarovar Dam.
Baba Amte was honored with numerous national and international awards. The Government of India presented him with the Padma Shree Award in 1971 and then the Padma Vibhushan in 1986. These were followed by the Gandhi Peace Prize in 1999.
Today his sons continue to run the various operations Amte started. He died at 93 on the 9th of February 2008 in Anandwan.
Baba Amte was a passionate activist whose leadership has left a staggering legacy that continues to help and inspire people across India and beyond.