Trainers : Sq Leg Dr Srivatsan Chari and Tr Mohan Kannanthodath, ERT214
Three years back when I did a TeXT with Chari in Thekkady, Kerala; he missed the flight and had to fly to Trivandrum and land up at 4.00 am the next morning! This time around, Chari was alright – but Bengaluru is blessed with its own startup airline : Air Pegasus. This airline has a peculiar habit of advancing the flights, yes you heard it right – like a 5.00 PM flight will be flown at same day at 10.00 am and the notice will be given to you the previous day “ Sir, you flight has been ‘preponed’ to 12.00 PM instead of 5.10 PM, you are requested to leave what ever you are doing and ensure that you board this flight”. I work in the IT sector and it was Friday anyways, so I jumped out and ensured I boarded an advanced flight ! But a Chari, a doctor couldn’t do much. He had an operation scheduled for that day, and leaving a patient half attended cant be done. So we booked him a separate flight to Kochi
3rd June 2016 – Friday Evening :
We gathered around in AVC, Tr Surej George Verghese’s home at Marine Drive Kochi. We prepared for the next day, interacted with some Kochi tablers and were treated to a sumptuous dinner. We went and checked out the facility in Lotus Club where we are going to conduct the TeXT.
4th June 2016, Saturday morning:
We had a great turn out for the TeXT with ALL tables participating, some including the Treasurer. We gathered around in the Gertrude hall at the club. After a brief introduction by Tr Suraj Verghese, Sq Leg Chari and Tr Mohan started the session with the famed ‘name game’. Of course this is something which is an instant hit with tablers – so all the incoming team got some good ‘prefixes’ for their names. The ice was broken, and camaraderie flourished immdtly.
Area One ers, were all relaxed and set for the next level of learning which was to follow. Chari now set the stage for the BHAG module for the day. This included ALL the Chairman, Secretaries and Treasurers.
BHAG (pronounced ‘Bee –HAG’):
BHAG or ‘Big, Hairy, Audacious, Goal’ is a tool in Strategic Management, which helps leaders or teams focus on medium to long term initiatives and achieve it. It was first introduced in the book ‘ Built to Last – Successful habits of Visionary Companies’ in the year 1994, by James Collins and Jerry Porras.
A BHAG acts as a focal point of effort and multiplies the team spirit. It has a clear finish line so that the team knows when they have achieved it
Usually BHAG goal setting process is a time consuming one, but we tried and fit in to any one facet of tabling. If we did it for all facets we wouldn’t have the required time.
Sq Leg Dr Srivatsan Chari started with the intro of what a BHAG is and talked about the concepts of SMART Goals etc. After that the discussions of BHAG started. The question in contention was – ‘What is that BHAG Area 1 wants to achieve this tabling year !’
There were several discussions, suggestions, cross suggestions – brainstorming was through the roof. The discussions were effectively facilitated by the trainers Sq Leg Chari and Tr Mohan.
The first discussions were like “Chartering a A380 to Las Vegas, stay in palatial suites, to unlimited fun, to fancy cars, cross country RV to Miami and then landing on a cruise to the Bahamas” Yes it was BIG, it was HAIRY, it was AUDACIOUS! AVC Suraj was wondering where things were going, what are these trainers up to?
The discussions were facilitated further on to things which better reach and implementability and Tr Lakshman and his incoming team from Trivandrum RT 126 came out with the goal of ‘Eradicating Hunger’. This caught the attention of the whole group since the pitch had an emotional side to it. People were talking about how much of food we are wasting and how there are still people who don’t have food and are on the pavements etc.
The recent success of ‘Compassionate Kozhikode which is a huge hit in the city of Calicut was a model which was being benchmarked against during these discussions.
Tablers of Area One brainstormed as ONE, across cities and across states! Tr Amul Raj and his team from Trichy Moon Rock RT 108 passionately poured in to the BHAG discussions. The ideas which went across during the BHAG were
- Setting up a Tabling Home
- Do something similar to the ‘Coffee on the Wall’
- Setting up refrigerators in front of hotels to keep extra food
Also discussions were around how to get this implemented. After various deliberations it was decided that Area One ers are going to do the following,
- Use the ‘Power of Re1’ concept which is already in Round Table India and other means to collect funds for the cause of ‘Eradicating Poverty’
- Fund the identified hotels in the town / city and issue Round Table Coupons from a central place to people who are in need of a free meal
- Increase the reach in the town / city, and increase the number of coupons being issues by increasing the funds raised for the same since this is an ongoing project
The following Tables along with their teams committed to start it off in their cities during this year,
Trichy RT 54 – Tr Sidharth and Tr Murali
Trichy Moon Rock 108 – Tr Amul Raj and Tr Gowri Shankar
TRT 126 – Tr Lakshman and Tr Aneesh
QRT 85 – Tr Pepsin
CBRT 131 – Tr Alex and Tr Kapil
Tr Lazar from Kottayam RT who is a CA said that he will look in to the legalities of issuing coupons akin to currency notes and get this project going.
Thus in TeXT we could deliver an ‘Area Long Term Project’. AVC Surej was ecstatic at the outcome and the challenges ahead to achieve this behemoth task !
He said he will be taking a periodic review of this initiative
4th Saturday (afternoon and evening Session)
After the BHAG we broke up for lunch. The lunch was replete with banned items elsewhere in India such as, beef ! Chari who knows Area One ers quite well, was amazed with the unity in which Area One ers devoured beef !
We had two modules conducted simultaneously after this – the Chairman Module conducted by Chari and Secretary module conducted by Mohan. Intense discussions and learning continued during the afternoon session and we broke by about 6 PM
We reconvened for the evening social, hosted by ERT214, by about 7 PM, and the fellowship continued until late in the night and the new team became very close to one another
5th Sunday, June 2016 (Until Noon)
We gathered in the hall for the case studies. The case studies covered various opportunities for improvement in Area 1, like high cost of tabling, to lesser participation in Area and National matters, integrating tablers of a new table in the area etc.
Tablers were very active and all the 4 case studies given were presented by the teams. A lot of new ideas were discussed. This session ended in a high note, and Sq Leg Chari closed the session with a vote of thanks to all the participants and the organizers. We dispersed by 2.00 PM, and Tr Mohan Kannanthodath took many tablers who are visiting the city of Kochi for a boat ride, of the Kochi Water Scape.
All in all a great two days where learning, fun, camaraderie and friendship topped the mood !
Yours in Tabling
GLMF Tr Mohan Kannanthodath
Chairman, Ernakulam Round Table 214, 2015-16
National Blog Convener, 2015-16