Shane Warne is my hero. Now, I am not really much of a cricket fan, nor did I follow the IPL matches regularly, but somewhere down the line it was difficult to remain immune to a team and a captain who came out of nowhere and took the bails off, so to speak, of the rest of the high-profile teams.
A ‘head’ above: Warne’s captaincy is a lesson in leadership.
Before IPL started, I really had no opinion about Warne as a cricketer or as a captain, but now I find myself thinking over and over again, what is it that he did right to get that group of men from five countries (Australia, South Africa, Pakistan, England and India), some with little or no international cricketing experience, to come together in very little time as an unstoppable team. What must he have said to them (yes, I have read all about the famous dossier but there has to be more) that made this team a winning combination? How did a team that no one fancied at the start of IPL, a team which was the least expensive, had no Icon player (a player who can only play for his home city), no sponsors, no Bollywood celebrity as a brand ambassador or owner, manage to leave all others behind?
Like the rest of the country, I watched that IPL final, and many times during the course of the game, thought that the Rajasthan Royals were out of the reckoning but one thing or the other (a few dropped catches, a charged-up Pathan, a captain out to win) ensured the team hung in there and come out champions. Watching each and every one credit some part of their winning performance to their captain was awesome. And, once again, it brings me back to the question: What did Warne do to make winners out of those boys?
Many of us spend at least 50 hours a week at work and our bosses can play a huge role in making us want to stretch those to 60 or 70 if the need arises or cut them back to 40 if we hate the “bugger”. A boss can even be the deciding factor in whether we stay with a company or not. A poll survey conducted by in.yellojobs.com — a recruitment network — in February 2008 for registered users in India found that contrary to popular belief, ‘money’ was not the biggest clincher when it came to switching jobs for most people who took the survey.
More than 40% of the respondents claimed to have changed jobs because of uncooperative and bad superiors. Imagine if these people had got bosses who listened to them, encouraged them and shared a vision, a la Warne, what a difference it would have made to their working lives.
At Lounge, as you all know, our editor is away, and in the last 60 days, we have coped well with some help from our boss’ boss. But I think the secret lies in the fact that we have figured that the way forward for our team is to take it upon ourselves to encourage and motivate each other on a regular basis. It is a lesson in team-building that I think we are all learning, and one that I am sure will stay with me forever.
Meanwhile, rain allowing, I plan to visit Mumbai soon and on top of my to-do list is a visit to WINK at Taj President for a round of Maharashtra Martinis—a whisky-based cocktail. I have never really been inclined towards whisky because I have always thought of it as “dad’s drink”, and I certainly did not want to be caught drinking what he glugs down. My favourite cocktail to date remains the spicy Bloody Mary that all bartenders at the Delhi Gymkhana seem to know how to whip up.
But a lot is happening in the world of whisky and I, for one, cannot resist the lure of a good cocktail. Go ahead, take a shot at whisky. I intend to. And don’t forget to tell us all about ‘the’ whisky cocktail that seduced your palate...with the recipe, of course.
Priya Ramani is away till August. Catch up on her travels at Blogs.livemint.com
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