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Air India Training Program - 2013

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‘Making A Difference, Together!' – April 2 - 6, 2013

Senior Management of Air India Ltd., Members of Initiatives of Change Family, Faculty, Volunteers - ‘Making A Difference, Together’, 2-6 April, 2013.

Conception of Air India Training Program

Mr. Rohit Nandan had attended the I.A.S. Officers’ Conference held at Asia Plateau back in 2006. After being appointed Chairman and Managing Director, Air India Ltd., he expressed a desire to have a program for the senior management of Air India Ltd. to Harshwardhan Mishra, who has been associated with IofC since 2003, with whom he had forged a friendship during the IAS Conference. After several meetings and ten months of hard work by the convenor, the Air India Training Program, ‘Making A Difference, Together!’ took place at Asia Plateau, Panchgani, from 2 to 6 April, 2013. When the desire is genuine and guided from within the higher force also works to connect all the dots, He takes time but when it happens, the outcome is blissful.

Take Aways

The intended Take-Aways of the conference were:

The planning team spent long hours thinking what should be the real take away from the training programme. The mentioned points were thought about that this is what we need to achieve at the end of the five day programme. After the programme concluded the prelude expressed earlier was prominent.

  • “I” Can make a difference & “We” can make a difference together.
  • Participants leave Asia plateau without inner baggage and with healed hearts.
  • Participants leave with minimum one actionable resolution that comes through inner inspiration and not imposition.
  • To help them build trust and overcome trust deficit.
  • We endeavour to provide them an experience of humbleness.

Why IofC for Delivering this Programme?

From individuals to organisations to large corporations to multi billion rupee company the human nature is same. All the activity is outward which can be measured on a graph. IofC is unique as it does not give any mantra which will change the colour on the balance sheet from red to white, but it has a unique way to sensitise a human by taking on a journey which is inward. Once absolute clarity and connection of listening is established within, the complete perception of looking outward changes. IofC talks of change and change begins from within. When one individual starts to change in an organisation, in collective training the effect is multiplier. When this effect is created collectively, graph is a small word and the colour of the rainbow will not be able to able to paint the impressions of change. IofC is confident of delivering in what it believes and if followed without dilution, turn-around is at the bend.

If the senior personnel of Air India Ltd experience the change that IofC offers them, it leaves no room for doubt that these individuals, as powerful agents of change, can together turn around the airline and live the vision of the founding father.

Day Wise Report

At 11.30 am, the lighting of the inaugural lamp took place. After a short prayer and a song presented by the resident interns, Dr. Ravi Rao, Resident Director at Asia Plateau, addressed the participants. He welcomed the senior management of the future number one airlines of the world. He took them to the root of Initiatives of Change, India. He shared how when IofC started, all that the founders had was the determination to do something for the nation and the sincerity to do it with. He stressed on the importance of listening to the inner voice for Connection, Correction and Direction of life.

General Manager, Human Resource and Personnel of Air India Ltd., Mrs. Meenakshi Dua addressed the participants. She shared how after only twenty five hours on the property, she already felt a sense of belonging to the idea and place. Five years into the merger, she felt that there was a certain deficit of trust among the employees. Through examples she shared how perception of a situation influences the way we act. She urged her colleagues to do to other what they want done to them.

The convenor welcomed the participants to Asia Plateau. He shared the story of how during the freedom struggle, the trust in Khadi was so much that if a person was arrested, he or she used to hand over all their valuable possessions to any stranger on the road, who was wearing Khadi. In those days khadi was symbol of trust. Such is the power of trust and human relations which I have seen over the years with people who are involved with IofC. He conveyed that over the course of the next five days, he hoped that participants would develop such relations between them.

Asia Plateau training centre is a living example of excellence. For more than forty five years, she is showing an alternative in living, in thinking, in hygiene, in simplicity. Every part of her is an example which she humbly shares with all those who visit Asia Plateau. The ethos, history, stories of change of ordinary people, the reconciliation and healing of hearts, every piece of furniture, rooms, buildings, and the nature has a story to narrate. She cannot be described in words. If you want to know, understand and receive what she has to offer, go unconditionally to Asia Plateau.

After sharing and showing the legacy of Asia Plateau, the participants were treated to an extremely well conducted ‘Icebreaking’ session by Mr Dilip Patel.

Participants actively participated in the ‘Ice Breaker’ session hosted by Mr. Dilip Patel.

An ice breaker process, essentially, has to take the participants away from their current state of mind, and in a fun filled way. It works well if we anchor the participants into their child hood. It instantly releases the energies of childhood curiosities, creativities, competencies and simplicity without the baggage of ego, jealousy, status complexities and undue stresses. In real sense, the ‘adult’ of the trainees breaks ice with their own ‘child’ within. The jingle of ‘Chaaro taraf hain hariyali’ was seen breaking out throughout the rest of the conference.

Participants humbly and willingly surrendered themselves to life at Asia Plateau joining the service and wash up of the meals. They sang songs and enjoyed themselves. Participants dispersed into their Family groups, named Take Off, Landing, Propel and Accelerate, where over their life’s anecdotes, they all got to know each other better.

People are vital in all that we do and each person brings phenomenal energy, creativity, lateral thinking and willingness to work hard by taking that extra step towards a fellow soul. We had remarkable helping hands who in their own individual capacity carry eminently good qualities and collectively we all served each and every person demonstrating highest standard towards care, love, sacrifice and serving unconditionally. When one works with such deep quality etched people as team, the outcome has to be mesmerising.

Mr Prabhakar Vartak took the participants for an early morning soul nurture walk. It is said that ‘Business is people, medium could be the products, or services’. Thus, people who matter in our life are at the centre in all our transactions, at home, or elsewhere. Hence it becomes necessary to examine the role of our own deeds with respect to the comfort level that we enjoy with other people. Life Balance Sheet (LBS) is the process for initiating this inward journey. It also introduces the participants a core tool of IofC, we call it ‘Quiet Time’.

The most preferred time for initiating the construction of one’s LBS is early morning. After drawing inspiration from the nature as the most important facilitator in our lives we initiate filling up the page 1 of LBS. This is the asset side, given to us as a gift by our well wishers. The participants were encouraged, while remaining in silent solitude, to recall all the people in their lives who had done some significant ‘good’ to them without any expectations in return. The participants then would share the stories of their benefactors in a moving manner.

Next morning the page 2 of the LBS beckoned them to list down their own ‘self less’ deeds to others, if any. During the sharing process a great revelation happens to most of the participants that their page 2 is far shorter than the page 1. The page 3 and 4 were constructed on the morning of the day 3. These are the liability pages, listing of the ‘wrongs’ that one may have done to others, knowingly or unknowingly, on page 3, while tearing off, and thrown far away the page 4 which would list the ‘wrongs’ done by others to us. One of the sessions of LBS took place at the plateau top after participants had trekked it there.

It is our experience that the LBS process invokes values like gratitude, humility, humbleness and self worth, negating the selfishness and self-centred attitude.

Participants were initiated to the four absolute values of Honesty, Purity, Unselfishness and Love. People questioned whether following honesty was helping the organisation or not. An intense discussion followed concluding with the thought that ‘Absolute’ is a guiding star and in one’s life time, one thrives to achieve the absolute; absolute is a constant journey and one consciously walks on this path always alert to take one’s life on a gradual growth moving towards absolute. Remaining quiet and being in the state of quietness is vital for every person. Once the power of silence is experienced by the inner self, quest is more. The concept of daily quiet time and the relevance of writing one’s thoughts in the diary are of significance. Looks, appearance, hair style clothing will change with time but the expression captured from within onto the diary will make sense and relevance down memory lane and therefore disciplined quiet time is very important. When one walks on this path the ability to see enhances and many-many accumulations gathered within arise, standing tall and clearly addressing the self to work upon. This is the beginning of the journey towards absolute, the inner self will constantly bless us with guidance which one needs to follow in its purest form, follow it unconditionally without bringing intellect, ego, reasoning, manipulation. One will experience and feel bliss and this will in-still a deep feeling within that it is worth walking on the path of absolute. Subscribe to this living and see the difference or otherwise one always has a choice.

Participants were introduced to the concept of Quiet Time

During a session named the ‘Parliament Session’, participants were asked to go into the minds of the airlines’ customers to individually categorise Air India as a Top, Middle or Bottom airline and accordingly divide into three groups. The floor was then thrown open for discussion, where group members tried to ‘recruit’ from other groups. The objective of the session, apart from making participants introspect on their organisation and learn of others’ perceptions toward the organisation, was to throw light on how the parliament works. Personal perceptions came out in the open, got modified and paved way to defining the goal, perhaps, of achieving higher standards of services and satisfaction. This also clarified that there were enough powers found vested within that can be activated to bring about the change. It certainly needed to look within, the USP process of IofC.

Mr. Seenu Iyengar hosted a session on trust. Using the tool developed by Kurt Lewin, the participants, having divided into Family Groups, analysed the positive and negative forces impinging on the trust level among mangers in Air India. The positive forces for change, called Driving Forces, facilitate increasing the trust level whereas the negative forces, called Restraining Forces (obstacles) bring down the trust level.

The participants identified the following set of forces:

Restraining Forces

  • merger-related issues:- Lopsided organization structure, policies not harmonized, implementation of Dharmadhkari Report, lack of trust in Government.
  • Lack of shared vision and concrete roadmap going forward.
  • HR issues:- Unfair rewards/ Punishment, lack of parity in Benefits, lack of clarity on policies relating to pay fixation and career progression.
  • Lack of Succession Planning.
  • Lack of transparency in decision making process.
  • Witch hunting. Interference by CAG/CVC/Courts.
  • Poor communication (Lateral and vertical).
  • Poor Industrial relations.

Driving Forces

  • Competence/ Commitment of managers.
  • Sense of Belonging.
  • Management support.
  • Regulations and processes.

It can be seen that the negative forces are perceived to be overwhelmingly stronger than the positive forces. This explains why the trust level among managers in Air India is so very low at present.

Participants engaging in discussions among their family groups: Takeoff, Landing, Propel, Accelerate.

“Keepers of the Flame” a powerful documentary on the house of Tata’s that immortalises the times of three Tata’s - Jamshed ji Tata, Naval Tata and JRD Tata. It also inspires the viewers that life exists beyond one’s self and how the founding father of the airline had a dream towards his pet project.

Human being is so finely designed by God that everything is perfect, each one is created differently. HE also gave a unique quality which is only her/his proprietary. But one universal human quality which he gave to all is EGO. With it are many other powerful impressions which get created like jealousy, anger, rage, superiority feeling, attitude, suspicion. Practically all negative traits are connected with Ego. These powerful feelings prevail right from a child to the elder most. If we humans can learn to deal with this fire, endless beautiful moments after moments will unfold. The trilogy of regular disciplined quiet time, introspection and corrective action, is the first step in reducing the size of the ego. Once ego is under control one gets courage to see at many things which exists within and under constant influence of quiet time the inner revelation is prominent. This gives courage to measure one’s life against the absolute standards to IofC. Many prominent feelings embedded deep within will filter out like jealousy, act of dishonesty, die hard habits which take away vital part of one’s life to banish it, suppressing the feeling of love by not expressing it in the moments when it means the most. Each and every person wants to live a life of happiness but somewhere in the process of growing up as “I” endless inner impressions gets created. Coming to Asia Plateau is a larger design of the higher force as HE too needs many to bring lasting change in the human race which HE has created. Work on ego and life will start seeing greener pastures.

Participants attended a case study session, where IofC Values have played a pivotal role in bringing about organisational change. This is a case wherein a junior manager who was inspired by the ideas of IofC brought about a transformation in TELCO (now called Tata Motors), Jamshedpur. Mr. Kiran Gandhi, a trustee of IofC and an eminent HR trainer spoke about his experience of bringing about a transformation in industrial and human relations in the TELCO plant in Jamshedpur in the 1970's and 1980's. Kiran joined the Foundry Division of TELCO in 1972 as a graduate trainee after passing out from IIT Bombay. When he was a student at IIT, he had come into contact with the ideas of IofC which had deeply influenced him. When Kiran started work in the Foundry division, he came into contact with 2 union leaders belonging to 2 warring camps. Kiran helped to bring about this reconciliation. This was noticed by the Resident Director Mr. Sarosh Ghandy, who then decided to send batches of managers and union leaders for training at Asia Plateau. Some of these people changed dramatically and helped to bring about greater harmony in the work place. Subsequently Kiran got a transfer to the Management Training Centre of the company where he initiated a path breaking training program called "Human Relations at Work" modelled on the training in AP. Most of the 24,000 employees of TELCO, Jamshedpur went through this program over 6 years. This programme was instrumental in bringing about a remarkable change in human relations and facilitated the introduction of several initiatives like Small Group activities, Self-Managed teams and Total Quality Management.

The key lessons of the TELCO experience were spelt out by Kiran:

  • Change need not always begin at the top, but involvement and support of top management is a must for achieving any major organisational change.
  • When a situation has gone bad change in people and acknowledgement of mistakes becomes necessary for restoring trust.
  • For change to take roots and gather momentum, the organisation needs to provide a platform for positive elements to come together. [In the Tata Motors transformation, the training program on Human Relations at Work, and our weekly home meetings provided such a platform].
  • Senior management must listen to positive voices and quickly act to support and reinforce them.
  • The organisation must provide an institutional system or process to firmly anchor the change. Such a process must include training of all concerned and systems for recognising peoples’ positive contributions. [In Tata Motors ‘Small Group Activity’ provided such an institutional process].

The participants, faculty and volunteers proceeded on a picnic to Mahabaleshwar. Picnic is very much a school related fun but since the child within was awakened one actually enjoyed the picnic singing those type of songs which are generally sang on a picnic. All participants were seen enjoying bonding with each other as they bonded over strawberries and cream. The local products were bought in abundance as if there is no tomorrow.

Hand writing as an art is going to get challenged in the years to come and post-card will be thing of the past. In the evening after picnic, all were encouraged to write a post-card to their loved ones, friends and colleagues. This exercise was encouraged by the team to show participants how a simple step such as sending a small note expressing ‘I am there’, sometimes creates joy and happiness for others. All through the training programme one was encouraged to write and reflect. In the present times of email, electronic conversation, short messages, connectivity on move is taking away some of the simple pleasures of life like receiving a personalise letter through postman. We use to write letters but writing letter to one’s own-self is new. One was encouraged to reflect on the time spent during the training workshop and put down on a letter all those moments, expressions, impressions which came out prominently and then forget it with the passing of time only to receive it at a later date where a wave of nostalgia will take over.

We all belong to a family. Family is vital to all that we do. But in the process of growing up, many impressions get implanted and some are so powerful and strong that they show a path which was taking many of us away from the family and people around who matter the most. Ego has its own role to play in taking us away from where we belong. If such relations did not matter then why do we subconsciously think about them and the emotional bond within constantly tells us connect, go back, forgive, forget but EGO has another set of advice and rationale. During such relations sharing moments one observes and understands true meaning of life and the popping ego is put to quiet to look at life from the conscious point of view. Once this connection is established life is on a runway nothing stops one from taking the most difficult step, which is a joyous moment like seeing a small baby taking the first step on her baby feet. Life without loved ones is a human moving without soul. One can never run away from a family and IofC provides a platform and each individual get’s connected to what is been spoken and shared and it takes the person into its own situation.

All participants trekked and took pleasure in the morning session atop the Plateau.

The word love is spoken casually all around, but when the word has to be used, expressed or shown one becomes mean and miser. The power of love expressed to the loved one is the most cherished moment and one feels unburdened for a long time. The feeling of weightlessness prevails deep within. A simple, small step sometimes takes a life time. Once healed within the family and with the person who matters the most life has a new meaning and dimension. IofC teaches it begins with ‘I’ and ‘WE’ is important, this introspection makes one thing beyond family. Love expressed beyond family is vital and one of the most important ingredient for the survival of mankind. The language of love is universal beyond borders and all that is going to come within on the last journey is love.

A session by Mr. Seenu Iyengar began with an explanation of the importance of building a high trust level in the organization as a prelude to change management. Then, each participant was asked to individually make a list of the actions which they would like to initiate for improving the trust level and to select the top 2 actions from their list. These were collated into a collective list which was debated in groups. The collective agreed action plan is given as an annexure. (Refer: Annexure 3).

The last and special evening of the programme – Talent Night. Post dinner everyone was treated to a graceful dance of welcome, the melody of a mouth organ, hilarious skits, beautiful songs sung by participants and members of the Asia Plateau family, funny jokes and renditions. After the talent display, everyone present danced and sang to Bollywood music.

In a country of ours there are three things which always occupy centre stage, Cricket, Bollywood and Politics. Most of us do not alien with the later but when it comes to dancing each one can show the hidden skill of jive, tango, break dance, hip-hop, tap, western and endless personal created moves and shakes. It was a heart filled joy to dance and see everybody in a spirit of abundant joy. This was only possible because the way the training programme unveiled leaf after leaf giving clarity and direction to all those who unconditionally surrendered and subscribed to the teaching of IofC. Each one could see where they are and where they should be. This clarity and personal introspection bridged the gap, showing the path that I have plentiful within me and I can do it. This feeling got exuberated outside in the form of dance.

One of the primary outcomes of the programme was the birth of the bond of human relations.

A Multi Faith Prayer was organised, where prayers of several religions and faiths were recited. Each one of them went to the higher force through prayers, sang in the praise of lord.

A presentation depicting the position of the mind with respect to the mind or the ego was shown. The mind, and through the mind, the body, has the option of aligning itself either with the ego or the conscience. With constant introspection, the voice of the ego can be reduced to a mere whisper, allowing the conscience to direct one’s actions, speech and thoughts. Ego is the biggest evil sitting within each one of us creating a cushion of convenience, but each one of us forgets that the softest pillow on which one sleeps every night is our conscience.

After a short tea break, the India I Care session took place. India I Care (IIC) is a program which exhorts one’s responsibilities towards the society, the nation. It also binds us with the very people we may not be comfortable with at selfish levels. A humorous skit is enacted showing our day to day behaviour at home with respect to the usage/ wastage of resources like food, water, electricity etc, and our attitudes towards women, menial labourers, systems, corruption etc in public life. This session creates high impact and connects them all with the larger purpose. They also resolve to improve their public behaviour. They see meaning in saving water, power etc and offer their support in taking this concept to larger segments of people.

Participants were given two pieces of paper – one to note down a commitment to themselves which they will follow it for the rest of their lives. The other to note down one ‘item’ or ‘characteristic’ that they wished to leave behind at AsiaPlateau. Each one of us carry something within us which we struggle to get rid of and long time in one’s life goes away accumulating strength to take that step, at Asia Plateau collective thinking and one derives enough courage and strength which helps each individual to banish the black spot within, and that impression captured on a piece of paper is burned, left behind for good at Asia Plateau, which carries a big heart to take all the impressions which one wants to leave behind.

Thousands of moments were captured in bytes showing humans and nature’s expression. It was shown with all making each person re-live those nostalgic moments of learning, realisation, short comings, sharing, laughing, introspecting and of human bond. A feedback form was filled out by all the participants, the summary of which is attached as an annexure. (Refer: Annexure 2) The participants expressed their gratitude to the coordinating team and to the Chairman and Managing Director for organising the programme. A summary of the verbal feedback is attached as an annexure. (Refer: Annexure 1)

Participants thoroughly enjoyed themselves on the Talent Night, 5 April, 2013

ANNEXURES:

  1. Summary of Verbal Feedback and Sharing
  2. Summary of Written Feedback
  3. Action Plan
  4. Schedule of ‘Making A Difference, Together!’
  5. List of Participants and Contact Details
  6. List of Faculty and Volunteers and Contact Details

Annexure 1: Summary of Verbal Feedback and Sharing

  • It is important learning to know how the programme was perceived by the participants, it helps for all the future endeavours of learning and specially coming from those who are experience and hold positions of responsibility. It helps to sharpen our edges and, serve better to the people who are going to come in the day.
  • Very well conducted course, if I may say, on behalf of everyone. And it’s been an eye opener for all of us. I think everyone’s been excellent in all the efforts, you guys went beyond what was required in guiding us and helping us. I really liked is - there is this desire to follow it up and not just forget us the moment we leave these doors and for me that is very important. We all appreciate and welcome that, the discipline that you were trying to create in us, was especially very good. Hope that we just carry on like this for long. No negative feeling and I mean this from the bottom of my heart – thank you so much.
  • It was taking long to think that there was some discrepancy of what was intentioned to be imparted to us. We have received what was required to be given. We all here understand that we are thorough professionals in whatever field we are, but there is a necessity for such courses. For me, it is an eye opener. I was just thinking that there are such training institutions and we undergo several trainings within our career and pilots are the ones who keep updating themselves and police also, we go for several management trainings. At the end of it, we feel it was good fun. Aise bahut zyada zaroorat to thi nahin, lekin chalo, ye chalta rehta hain. Kahin kahin kuch skills upgradation ki baat hui, but I feel that this type of Moral Re-Armament ki jo training hain, it should be done. It is quite essential, aur kabhi kabhi ye maan ke chalte hain ki hum bahut perfectionist hain, main to bahut achcha karta hoon, but unless and until we introspect, tab tak cheezain bahut achchi hoti, ye mujhe ab realisation ho raha hai. Otherwise maybe due to false ego or other things that nahin, mere se achcha aur kaun ho sakta hain aur mujhe to sab kuch pata hi rehta hain. The other internal feeling that I have does not matter what matters is introspection. I thank all from my heart, and this course has given a lot to me and I will try to replicate it within my family and within my organisation. In whatever way I have learned, I will try to impart the same skill.
  • I have spent five days out here you have been very successful in putting everyone into introspection so nobody can tell you what is the flaw in that. Everything is so beautiful.
  • I thank entire team including all the supporting people for making not only this training successful in the true sense, but also emotionally charging it. Training is normally always working on a mental plane. And I found here the uniqueness that combines the mental, the emotional and the physical. For me that was a true value because we did physical work, we had meditative work that applies to the mind, we emotionally vented our feelings so we actually harmonised the holistic approach to training. It is commendable for the team, brilliant act of putting the physical, mental, emotional and the soul which is all integrated into one. I congratulate the team and hope that you will continue doing the same. There is no negativity or criticism to be very honest, I would like to suggest for the future add another day for personal interaction which will help us put this learning effectively into Air India. My colleagues out here have thoroughly enjoyed with each other. We are all going to go back; we are all going to change, 100 percent.
  • This is a humble plea, when we all go back, let us take this more seriously and not just think that it was a course. We really have to feel that we mean it and we are going to make that difference. And one humble appeal – when top management is talking to us, let us just voice our inner voice and truthfully tell them what is going wrong in this organisation. I actually at times don’t find that when we are in meetings; people just keep quiet. So if we can just take this, and actually, we’re not hurting anybody- we’re saying it in the interest of Air India.
  • The program was very well conceptualised. And the faculty has been very good, my issue is you are conducting for the senior management of the organisation; we are familiar with each other. However, at the grass root level, at the staff level, especially at the middle management level, this kind of programs are required more, it’s for the management to think because there is lot of heart burns and jealousies.
  • What personally I feel is that the silence time and shavasan and being with one own self, that time, is a little more considering that the whole program has to be packed in five days.
  • I think the whole idea of this program is to try to help people help themselves. To realise their inner potential from silence time and what one requires in this programme is quiet time and longer quiet time so do not take away or shorten the silence time, it will only take away the real essence from the program.
  • Personally I look at it like this that for 30 years I was going in some direction, unmindful of anything else. In these four days, what has happened is that I’ve looked inside, looked beyond myself, looked at my family, looked at my near and dear ones, looked at what all I’ve done good, what all I’ve done bad. Basically taken a stock of the situation. And that I think is a great milestone as far as the life is concerned. I feel that the quiet time has a great value, which I never realised, now I realise. It was very well conducted, very well planned and very well supported programme.
  • I was observing all around, I saw the dedication of the people who were employed here. Especially the bai’s. They were not doing it just for remuneration, it seemed they have dedication. That has been learning for me. At that level, also they are dedicated to the cause for which they are working.
  • Before I came for this program, I knew very little about what this program will give us. I thought it was one of those programs – abhi itni umar mein, humko kaun kya sikhayega? Nothing, you just come for a program like this, attend and go back. Five days of holiday, enjoy. Within a day or two of being here, I have realised that there is a path in which we are set on for life, here are, our own people (faculty) who have experienced life, more than us, who have gone through it themselves, they are now putting us in a direction. I realised why I am here? Why am I born? Why I am in this world? I have already probably spent more than two thirds of my life and there’s very little part of it left. So many things I have learned- How I need to interact with my friends? How do I need to talk to them? How do I need to help people? I have realised that we are here for a purpose. Everybody is there for the family, for their profession, into an organisation, earn our living, take our money home, spend it. But I think there is more to it. I think there’s a reason for why we are here and to a great extent internally, I may not be able to explain it, I have come to know that I am there for a purpose. It should have come from within, from my own. I think each one of us it should have come from within, it might have but then we say that we’ll do it tomorrow, day after. Whether it is spiritual or your inner voice, we do much against our will. Much against what your conscience allows. That I want to do this – but No, I will not. I don’t like him, he did that to me. Or he’s a big show off. Why should I help another colleague of mine? Let me try and pull him down. Or even if I don’t pull him down, let me not support him. So those kinds of learning processes have been there. It’s something which is fantastic; I mean I am taking away much, much more than what I had expected and I have made certain decisions, which I think, by the time I get back tomorrow, Monday is another day in the office, but tomorrow is all mine and in this time, I will implement certain changes and at least try and implement and I am not going to think of the repercussions because so far, I had the fear that if I do this, this is what is going to happen. I am not even going to discuss it with people at home; I know it’s going to be good. Maybe initially, I am going to have certain apprehensions, but I am going to do it, because that’s the right thing, my inner voice tells me that that’s what you should have done two or three years ago. Why have you been hesitating to do it? Why you have been holding on to yourselves? I’m sure each one of us have decided what to do. So thank you to all of you, it has been great. Thanks to the CMD that he thought that we need this training. My performance in the company has also been constrained because at least once or twice a day I am thinking about something that is troubling me. Like on weekends I’m thinking of a family issue, a problem with a friend, a personal problem and it can be solved. All you have to do is pick up the phone and say lets meet and sort it out. It’s a five minute job. I am sure that a week ten days from now I am going to be a much, much relaxed person because I’m going to solve out those issues of my own life so that I can come back to the organisation better.
  • I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. I’ve realised much of my own shortcomings. And I’ve already initiated certain actions and I intend to continue. Thank you very much.
  • I have lived in a joint family all my life. The current situation is not very good and it pains me to see the effect that it is having on my mother's health. When my sister and I were young, we were not given materialistic things many a times. But today I see my cousins getting everything that they ask for, this lead to lot of jealousy. In present times things are getting better on the family front as my uncle's family is moving out.
  • Frankly, a very honest confession I have to make. We were working on this together and I was carrying the baggage saying that since I come from wide body, there could be so many from narrow body. That’s my thinking. Don’t be so critical of it, you know, you don’t know how it’s going to develop. You have never been through this program before. All I know is that the CMD has gone through it and he feels it’s something that is going to be effective. We worked on it together, but I wasn’t sure how it would be, because I had never experienced it. Sitting through the whole thing together on Monday, was so beautiful with IofC and I already felt belonged, everyone welcomes you, everyone just loves you out here. We sat together, understanding the complexities of the organisation, what is required, till 12 in the night we were working, developing the training programme, even then I was not sure how it would work; but as it unfolded, it just beautifully came out and there are so many take-backs, but for me, the most important would be that I am powerful enough, the power of one is so significant, because all of us, in our own way start feeling helpless. ‘I can’t do anything by myself unless, the others can do it’. But if we think strongly about it, we think, we are here for a purpose and we can bring about a change and a difference, I am sure we can. And I am sure with all of us, and our ripples being felt collectively, this organisation is going to feel the change. And I hope that all of us commit to it, do we? Yes, we do. I don’t want to say thanks because that is too small a word for all of you, the entire team.
  • When we arrived we were tired and in the company of known people but still strangers, everyday was a new revelation and the concept of quiet time was seeking in slowly, today we are going to leave, five days have passed by each person was so engrossed in their quiet time and the focus was only on their diary not bothered who is next to them or who is walking past. This training programme has given a lot.
  • Today sitting in the family relationship session I have realised listening to the young girl that I to have kids and they are still too young and how I am not giving enough time to them and in spite of seeing things which were going wrong I looked the other way and did not interfere in the lives of others in my house, but today I have realised I am going to give more time to my kids and also loving care for them by showing them what is correct.
  • “While I was growing up I used to take everyone in my family for granted. In general, father used to be busy with his business, we brothers were busy with our school etc, but none of us thought about our mother who selflessly kept taking care of all of us. Our only interaction with her was while asking for some help. We had become so selfish that we never asked how she felt staying at home for months together without anyone to talk to. In fact, we used to know of her being unwell on the 3rd or 4th day, when she could not even get up. We don’t even know how many times she would have been unwell, bore the pain silently and got back well without our knowing also. It did not matter to us so long as our daily needs were being fulfilled. I remember her saying that she must have done something in the past for which she had to bear this pain. We thought it was life as usual. But in an MRA youth conference I was listening to someone who shared about how he used to take his mother for granted too. Today, his mother was no more and while crying profusely he said he longed and dreamt of her mother's feet and just wanted to fall on it. That had shook me from within and I started realising that there was much in my hands too which I could correct. This moment had broken the life-as-usual attitude that we had and I immediately called back home and talked to my mother and younger brother too with whom I had not talked for more than 5 years. I remember having hugged them for the first time immediately after going back home. Now, I have definitely become more sensitive but can never do enough to compensate for the pains I have given to them. All I can and am doing is by being aware that I am not taking anyone else for granted in life - at home, workplace or elsewhere."
  • My wife passed away at a young age. My children (two daughters and one son) at that time were very young. At that time, I took a decision that I would not remarry and I would not give a step mother to my children. I also decided that the children would live with me. We had a joint family. My brother, sister in law, father in law wanted to take them, but I said no. They had just lost their mother; they should not feel that they’ve lost their father. But it was easier said than done. If it were only boys, bringing them up would be easy, but two girls and younger girl being six and a half , without a lady in the house, I did not know how it was going to turn around. And within a week, by God’s grace, the problem was solved. My wife’s younger sister and my brother in law, they said they would move in with us. I was working with the Railways and they made an arrangement that they give a house just opposite to mine to my brother in law, who was also working with the Railways. Twenty five years we have lived as one family. And when my elder daughter got married, the entire ceremony was done by my sister in law and brother in law. The way that the relations developed helped my children and now they are all doing very well. A person in my place would have become very bitter. But this arrangement allowed me to focus on my career and today where I am. Today, I can say what I am and what my children are, they are entirely because of my sister in law.
  • Family and relations means a lot to us but still we are miser to express it to whom we love the most.
  • I have liked everything out here and I do not feel like going away from this place, I want to come soon and get my family and wife and kids to make them experience what all I had felt in the last five days.
  • As a child I was taught all what was been spoken and shared in this five days, but as I grew up I started to forget and forgot everything. Today was the day of reckoning, I remembered all that I had learnt as a kid and now I am not going to forget it will carry it forward.
  • Five captains of both the airlines, strangers at the beginning of the training programme rather acquaintance and on the last day all singing and presenting a song “top of the world” to the audience. Rare to see such a sight, and how God wends HIS magic when one is open to inner listening. When man listens, God speaks. When man obeys, God acts. When men working for the airline changes the airline changes.
  • I know smoking is bad, but still I smoke, today I have decided I will quit it forever, and my buddies have decided the same and we are going to keep a check on each other in the moments of vulnerability. NO smoking. I won’t call them sins; I just call them nice little vices, can sometimes be the key to a man’s whole being.

Annexure 2: Summary of Written Feedback Forms

For points 1 to 4, all 22 participants had to mark on a point based scale of 1 to 5, where 1 represents lowest, 5 represents highest.

  1. The Program has met the expectations with which I came? = 105/110 2) 3) 4)
  2. I will be able to practise what I have learned in my personal life? = 94/110
  3. I will be able to practise what I have learned in my work place? = 92/110
  4. I feel confident in recommending this programme to
  5. The things I liked the best about the program:
    1. Participants have appreciated the Life's Balance Sheet, Disciplined Lifestyle and Introspection/Quiet Time, allowing them to look at life afresh and showing them the way in which they can progress. They learned to open their heart. They appreciated the examples given by living persons.
    2. Participants have found the programme very relevant. They have appreciated the level of commitment displayed by IofC Team.
    3. A participant has appreciated the level of detail of the programme.
    4. They have appreciated the connection with nature and the positive vibes.
    5. They have liked the idea that change starts with the individual by listening to the Inner Voice.
    6. Participants have appreciated the messages through skits, songs, videos, especially the Power of One video.
  6. The Things I did not like about the program:
    1. No facility for smoking.
    2. Steep Steps for elderly.
    3. Day is slightly longer than expected, so less time for sleep.
    4. Some sessions were rushed.
  7. My suggestions for improving the program are:
    1. Participants felt the need for an extra day for one on one interaction with each other.
    2. Some participants are good as individuals but not in teams. So a session should be added to help people learn how to motivate others so as to be a catalyst of change within a group.
    3. They have made a suggestion to include 'how to work in a team' exercise toward the end of the programme.
    4. More time for Quiet Time.
    5. They have suggested a follow up of 1-2 days within 4-6 months.
    6. Many participants have suggested a Yoga/Meditation techniques session.
    7. A participant suggested that the teams from Delhi and Mumbai can meet up regularly (at for example – Juhu Beach or Lodhi Gardens), have a quiet time and discuss.
    8. One session of silent time in auditorium could be shortened by 10 minutes and meditative music could help me.
    9. To spread the programme in more accelerated way and have more centres and this conference to be held for more people of society in general.
    10. Include only Mapros in Picnic.
    11. 'Silent Time Techniques' to be made easier and 'How to Harness Positive Energy' to be explained and include session on 'dealing with stress'.
    12. More time at night for sleep.

Annexure 3: Collective Action Plan

  1. Complete review of the H.R. functioning and their own understanding of operational requirement to effectively plan recruitment and skill-sets.
  2. Have the top management talk to Government and to have face to face meetings with all the key areas in the organisation.
  3. Use crisis as opportunity, as it can be a great unifying force.
  4. Communicate about the problem to all the subordinates and get a consensus solution and implement it in a time-bound fashion
  5. Communicate with personnel at your level in your and others’ departments regarding your action plans and activities and invite suggestions for possible improvements.
  6. Keep morale/motivation of your subordinates high at this critical juncture by acknowledging their contribution to the organisation and doing whatever good you can do for them at your level.
  7. Exhibit total commitment and integrity at workplace.
  8. Establish quantifiable targets for each member and appreciate good performance in a periodic and routine manner.
  9. Communication and dialogue between top management including C.M.D. with junior management to understand situation at ground level
  10. Frequent interaction among personnel sitting in various departments to understand actual working and problems faced.
  11. Deliver the schedule in minimum cost and most efficient manner.
  12. Calibrate the scheduled delivery versus actual delivery and costs to refine the targets.
  13. Existing resources to be optimally used.
  14. Streamline the organisation and review the need of number of departments (example: personnel, H.R. and I.R.).
  15. Transparency in policies and plans.
  16. Increase communication at all levels.
  17. Respect for others’ domain areas.
  18. Clear instructions and well documented manuals to obviate faulty decision-making.
  19. Collective decision-making process.
  20. Accountability.
  21. Seek all details required in an informal and honest manner.
  22. Detail and make visible the constraints of your own department.
  23. Publish all performance parameters and make available to all.
  24. All policy changes are also to be published and explained to all.
  25. Use trainings as vehicle for communication and updation of information and attitudinal change.
  26. Periodic evaluation of parameters like K.P.I. and shortfall or otherwise should be highlighted for individual employees.
  27. Take measures to build high trust inter and intra departmentally.
  28. Encourage respect for colleagues by creating more opportunities to work together as a team and discourage criticism of people in view of their belonging to particular airline.
  29. Upscale staff competencies.
  30. Honestly share information about parent company’s plan for the subsidiary being hived off by the parent company from senior management to all and how their aspirations will be met in the times to come.
  31. Clarity of work-scope of the subsidiary to avoid inter-departmental conflict.
  32. Urgent need to have common set of rules, regulations and policies.
  33. Lead from the front and encourage participative decision-making.
  34. Empower juniors to take decisions without fear.
  35. Encourage upward flow of communication.
  36. Respect and welcome suggestions, ideas from all levels of employees.
  37. Appreciate your subordinates which in turn shall motivate others.
  38. Simplification of all personnel rules and processes.
  39. Subordinate must be given a feeling of support from seniors
  40. Agenda of the ministers be made known.
  41. Minister’s office and ministry must not interfere with day-to-day working.
  42. Try to convince the Government to approve FDI.

Annexure 4: ‘Making A Difference, Together’ Schedule

Day 1 Tuesday, 2 April, 2013 Location  
11.30 am to 12.30 pm Inauguration Ceremony Australia Room
12.30 pm to 1.00 pm Jaw Exercise Big Dining Area
4.00 pm to 4.30 pm Tea Big Dining Area
4.30 pm to 5.30 pm Asia Plateau Tour Foyer
5.30 pm to 6.15 pm Icebreakers Foyer
6.15 pm to 7.00 pm Introductions Australia Room
7.00 pm to 7.30 pm Stomach Exercise Big Dining Area
8.00 pm to 8.30 pm Social Exercise Foyer
8.30 pm to 9.30 pm Family Group Intro. Various Locations
Day 2 Wednesday, 3 April, 2013 Location  
6.15 am to 6.30 am Morning Tea Big Dining Area
6.30 am to 8.00 am Life's Balance Sheet – 1 Soul Nurture Australia Room
8.00 am to 8.30 am Breakfast Big Dining Area
9.30 am to 10.30 am Introduction to IofC Australia Room
10.30 am to 11.00 am Break Big Dining Area
11.00 am to 12.30 pm Parliament Session Australia Room
12.30 pm to 1.00 pm Jaw Exercise Big Dining Area
1.45 pm to 2.00 pm Sleep in Harmony Second Lounge
2.00 pm to 3.15 pm Force Field Analysis Australia Room
3.15 pm to 4.00 pm Red and White Cane Foyer
4.00 pm to 4.30 pm Tea Big Dining Area
4.30 pm to 5.15 pm Aa Ab Gaon Chale Foyer
5.15 pm to 6.15 pm Outdoor Excitement Field
6.30 pm to 7.00 pm Silent Time Auditorium
7.00 pm to 7.30 pm Stomach Exercise Big Dining Area
8.15 pm to 9.15 pm Documentary North East Room
Day 3 Thursday, 4 April, 2013 Location  
6.15 am to 6.30 am Morning Tea Big Dining Area
6.30 am to 8.00 am Life's Balance Sheet - 2 Australia Room
8.00 am to 8.30 am Breakfast Big Dining Area
9.30 am to 10.30 am Extended Quiet Time Australia Room
10.30 am to 11.00 am Break Big Dining Area
11.00 am to 12.30 pm Story of Organizational Change Australia Room
12.30 pm to 1.00 pm Jaw Exercise Big Dining Area
1.45 pm to 6.30 pm Picnic to Mahabaleshwar Mahableshwar
7.00 pm to 7.30 pm Stomach Exercise Big Dining Area
8.15 pm to 8.30 pm Post Card Writing Foyer
8.30 pm to 9.30 pm Fun and Games Foyer
Day 4 Friday, 5 April, 2013 Location  
6.15 am to 6.30 am Morning Tea Morning Tea Big Dining Area
6.30 am to 8.00 am Life's Balance Sheet - 3 Australia Room
8.00 am to 8.30 am Breakfast  
9.30 am to 12.30 am Relationship Session Australia Room
12.30 pm to 1.00 pm Lunch in Silence Big Dining Area
1.45 pm to 2.30 pm Shavasan Foyer
2.30 pm to 3.00 pm Letter to Self Big Dining Area
3.00 pm to 4.00 pm Appreciation Foyer
4.00 pm to 4.30 pm Tea Big Dining Area
4.45 pm to 6.30 pm Plateau Top Foyer
6.30 pm to 7.00 pm Silent Time Auditorium
7.00 pm to 7.30 pm Stomach Exercise Big Dining Area
8.15 pm to 9.30 pm Talent Parade Foyer
9.30 pm to 10.00 pm Music and Dance Foyer
Day 5 Saturday, 6 April, 2013 Location  
6.15 am to 6.30 am Morning Tea Big Dining Area
6.30 am to 7.00 am Life's Balance Sheet - 4 Australia Room
7.00 am to 7.30 am Multi Faith Prayer Foyer
7.30 am to 8.00 am Quiet Time Australia Room
8.00 am to 8.30 am Breakfast Big Dining Area
9.30 am to 10.30 am Presentation Australia Room
10.30 am to 10.45 am Break Big Dining Area
10.45 am to 11.30 am India, I Care Australia Room
11.30 am to 11.50 pm Aahuti Outside Foyer
11.50 pm to 1.00 pm Open Forum Australia Room
1.00 pm to 1.30 pm Jaw Exercise Big Dining Area

Annexure 5: List of Participants and Contact Details

MAKING A DIFFERENCE, TOGETHER A Training Programme for Top Management of Air India Ltd.

Sr. No. Name Address    Telephone   Email  
1 Bijaya Kumar Maurya M52, Niveditakunj, Sector- 10, RK Puram, , New Delhi 110022 9868185579 mbkips90@yahoo.com
2 Frederick Vaz 402, Rebello Apts., ST Roque Road, Bandra (W),, Mumbai 400050 9819740777 fj.vaz@airindia.in
3 Rakesh Anand C-423, Defence Colony, , New Delhi 110024 9819043747 greatindian@hatmail.com
4 Anil Sondhi 11, Air India Apts, Pali Hill Bandra (W), Mumbai 400050 9769690334 anil.sondhi@airindia.in
5 Ansbert D’Souza 7, Air India Apts, Pali Hill Bandra (W), Mumbai 400050 9004036777 a.d'souza@airindia.in
6 Pankaj Srivastava F3/19, Vasant Vihar , New Delhi 110057 9820313620 pankaj.srivastava@airindia.in
7 Chetan Prakash 112 B, Vista Villas, Sector 46, Gurgaon 122003 9810301947 chetan.prakash@airindia.in
8 Arvind Kathpalia S-498, Greater Kailash-1, New Delhi 110048 9810027575 arvindkathpalia@airindia.in
9 Amitabh Singh 621-A, Hamilton Court, DLF-PH-4, Gurgaon 9811207747 amitabhsingh6@gmail.com
10 Subodh Nigam Q-2, Hauz-Khas, First Floor, New Delhi 110016 9810328401 subodhnigam320@gmail.com
11 A.K. Datta A1, 505/506, Ascent Residency, Jogeshwari, ( E), Mumbai 400060 9820327835 ak.datta@airindia.in
12 Pankaj Kumar 93, Vigyan Vihar, New Delhi 110092 9818033136 pankajic@gmail.com
13 Sarabjot Singh Uberoi Flat-6, Block 25, Air India Colony-1 (Old), Kalina Santacruz,( E), Mumbai 400029 9619597807 ss_uberoi@rediffmail.com
14 K.Shyam Sundar L-304-305, Nav Vidyalaxmi, HSG Soc.Lt.Kotnis Marg, Mahim, Mumbai 400016 9820244953 k.shyam.sundar@airindia.in
15 Harsh Pandey D 1/1, Air India Colony, Vasant Vihar, New Delhi 110057 9711232329 harsh.pandey@airindia.in
16 Rita Motilal B 301, Skylark CHSL,161,Juhu-versova, Link Road, Andheri (W), Mumbai 400053 9833157846 r.motilal@airindia.in
17 Anil Rane 202, Ankita, Nehru Road, Vile Parle,( E), Mumbai 400057 9876394343 as.rane@airindia.in
18 Harpreet A De Singh L 2-601,Poonam Pragati, Poonam Nagar, Andheri ( E), Mumbai 400093 9819500338 harpreet.a.de.singh@ gmail.com
19 Bharat Chaturvedi 489,Hawasingh Block,Khelgaon Asiad Village Complex, New Delhi 110049 9810556622 b.chaturvedi@airindia.in
20 Meenakshi Dua 1/23, Sarvapriya Vihar, New Delhi 110016 9810407189 meenakshi.dua@airindia.in
21 S.N. Ojha B 501,Golden Square, Vidyanagari Marg, Mumbai 400098 9820298985 ojha.sn@gmail.com
22 Deepa Kanchan 402 A, Shelton Behind Citizen Credit Co Op Bank, Vakola, Santacruz (E ), Mumbai 400055 9869258484 kanchan3614@gmail.com
Sr. No. Name Address    Telephone   Email  
1 Dr.Ravindra Rao Director, Asia Plateau, , Panchgani 412805 02168-240241 docrao1@gmail.com
2 Seenu Iyengar B-205 Casa Ansal, 18 Bannerghatta Main Road, , Bengaluru 560076 9845702404 seenuvvs@yahoo.co.in
3 Dilip Patel 24,Pt.J.N. Rd.3rd Stage, BEML Layout,Raja Rajeshwari Nagar, Bengaluru 560098 9845025812 dilip.patel@gmail.com
4 Rekha Shahani Kamla High school, Madhu Park, Khar, Mumbai 400052 9820132170 principal.kamlaschool@ gmail.com
5 Pratap Narayan C-47,Friends Colony,(E ), New Delhi 110065 9810105866 pratapn@gmail.com
6 Deepak Mullick Villa 10, Prestige Cedars, Convent Road, Bengaluru 560025, Bengaluru 9980560308 dmullick@hotmail.com
7 Dr.Derrick Angelsz A 901, Atlantic, Sagar City, U.P.Road, Andheri (W), Mumbai 400058 9819298899 derrickangelsz@gmail.com
8 Harshwardhan Mishra Plot:49/257, Bartoli NIT Backpost, Rourkela, Odisa 769042 9004008303 blueharsh@gmail.com
9 Bhisham Mansukhani Shyam Niwas, Block 8/1A, Ground Floor, Breach Candy, Mumbai 400026 9820945291 bhisham55@gmail.com
10 Alifiya Patta C-3/27, Kubera Park, Kondhawa Road, Pune 411040 9922848184 alifiya_patta@yahoo.com
11 Ariha Doshi 3 I,Alankar, J. Mehta Road, Walkeshwar, Mumbai 400006 9820974822 doshiariha@gmail.com
12 Saurabh Sanganee Flat No.8, 2nd Floor, New Shankar Niwas, S.V. Road, Vile Parle (W), Mumbai 400056 9920319698 sanganee.saurabh@gmail.com
13 Viral Mazumdar A-394, 3rd floor, Defence colony, New Delhi 110024 9810440054 nevi4ever@vsnl.net

Courtesy:

  1. Asia Plateau interns for songs and help whenever needed
  2. Faculty and Volunteers for lending their time and energy.
  3. Let’s Make A Difference for Postcards and for Photography and Video Equipment.
IOFC