In my earlier blog post about various leadership styles, I mentioned that I would be writing more about the mindset that the leaders & teams would go through during various situation and sequences.  So, here, in this article I am taking the opportunity to write more about that.

Lets quickly remind ourselves, the sequences we played in the earlier article and situation we had.

Tom, played the character of the Leader.  Jerry, represents the team.

Now look at, and compare, how each one would have felt during the sequences we reviewed earlier.


Sequence 1 was about Tom pushing Jerry and and Jerry resists. Jerry needs to keep the balance but should not push back.


Sequence 1
Leader Team What do you get out of the situation ?
Gets satisfaction of driving the show.
Feels happy to push.
Does not think of ‘how’ part of work, but always demanding towards the result.
Initially starts resisting.
Silent resistance for sometime.
Give up hope and thinks the leader is always unfair.
Job gets done.
Employee dissatisfaction.
Not a long term solution.
Less growth opportunities, less comfort.
E.g., Useful in emergency or crisis situations.


Sequence 2 was about Tom & Jerry both push each other and both needs to keep balance.


Sequence 2
Leader Team What do you get out of the situation ?
Wonders why the team is pushing back.
Sometimes ego gets hurt.
Feels confusion or irritation with resistance from Team.
Gets uncomfortable.
Feels good to resist the leader.
Gets a feeling on being on equal footing.
Sense of happiness initially, but turns to discomfort later on.
New ideas !
Conflict situations / Deadlocks
Loss of efficiency
Not a long term solution
Both parties feel stress / discomfort
E.g., Useful in brainstorming situations.


Sequence 3 mentioned about Tom doing various hand movements, that Jerry was to follow up accurately.


Sequence 3
Leader Team What do you get out of the situation ?
Sense of freedom to start with, however soon losing direction
No commitment / disengaged leader
No boundaries / control over flow of work / scope
Ends up with ‘Why am I doing it?’
Sense of freedom to start with, looks easy to coordinate with leader
Soon starts to wonder, where are we going ?
Things look out of control
Gives up hope and thinks the leader is not in line with team.
Extremes and alternate solutions are likely to come out
Mostly directionless team
Cluelessness to Leader & Team both
No relationship built up with team & leader
E.g., Useful while exploring in unknowns or uncertain areas.


Sequence 4 was about Tom & Jerry doing random hand movements in coordination and taking turns to lead.


Sequence 4
Leader Team What do you get out of the situation ?
Makes the work simpler to understand
Feels part of team and grows the engagement
Work coordination happens in sync
Feels less work pressure and freedom
Feels more responsible
Enjoys following and experiencing leadership
Feels comfortable and less stressed
Experiences mutual understanding
Shared accountabilities
High quality job will be done
Grooming up of next level will happen
More engaged / trusted relationship
Requires some iterations to get in ‘sync’
Sense of ease and comfort feeling develops
Includes risk and requires time & investment from leaders
E.g., Useful in day to day work, factory model working, building teams etc.,


Interesting read ?

Various leadership styles are required in various situations. However, one must understand that there is no set guideline of how a leader should behave in every situation, and I am sure you would have known this by now after reading above.

I hope you would be able to relate it to how you respond in situations and your own working style as leaders. Or you can hopefully relate this to what you see in your manager does and you wonder why things are happening in this way !

And as usual,  a request to leave your comments or share what you think on the mindset of leaders and your experience with your team or your boss.

In my last blog post about the leadership management, I talked about how to understand right signals in the environment and how to excel in unknown situations. In this blog post, I would like to talk about another game that we played where the understand of the leadership styles was elaborated quite effectively.

The game was called Tom & Jerry game !

All the Tom’s were representing the leaders / managers and the Jerrys were representing the Teams and the game was to understand the reactions of the team based on the way Tom leads the team.


The team members were put up in pairs standing in front of each other.  One was acting as a Tom & other was supposed to act as a Jerry.  The Tom’s were, as I said, leaders and was supposed to move his hands in few sequences and the Jerry was supposed to follow Tom’s movements as instructed in the sequence.

There were four different sequences we were supposed to follow and that represented each of the leadership styles.

Sequence 1 – Tom pushes and Jerry resists. Jerry needs to keep the balance.

tomnjerry1As a part of this sequence, Tom & Jerry were supposed lock their palms standing in front of each other. Tom was supposed to push Jerry and Jerry was supposed to resist the push but not push himself.

The most important part of the aspect was that Jerry was supposed to keep the balance.

The situation unfolded as follows as per the timelines,

0th Second – Tom starts pushing Jerry.  Jerry starts resisting and tries to keep the balance.

10th Second – Tom starts pushing more. Jerry starts thinking of ways to keep balance and some times takes a step back to avoid too much pressure.

20th Second – Tom keeps up the pressure. Jerry admits that pressure is too much and starts giving up.

30th Second – Tom keeps up the pressure. Jerry finally gives up admitting that he can not keep the balance.


Sequence 2 – Tom pushes and Jerry pushes too. Both needs to keep the balance.

As a part of the sequence, Tom & Jerry were supposed to lock their palms standing in front of each other. Tom & Jerry both were supposed to push each other, however this time, Jerry was allowed to push back with equal efforts.

Again, the most important part of the game was both Tom & Jerry should keep their balance.

The situation, this time, unfolded as follows as per the timelines,

0th Second – Tom starts pushing Jerry. Immediately, Jerry also stars applying pressure. Both start pushing each other.

10th Second – Tom and Jerry both starts putting pressure and starts increasing the pressure. Both start feeling the stress.

20th Second – Tom and Jerry both, reaching a point of high pressure, starts giving up as both admit both can not keep up the pressure.


Sequence 3 – Tom does various random gestures with his hand. Jerry needs to simply follow the movements accurately.

As a part of the sequence, Tom & Jerry were both supposed to stand in front of each other. Tom was supposed to make random gestures with his hand by moving in any direction. He should gradually increase the speed. Jerry was supposed follow and mirror the movements of Tom as much as he can, ensuring to be in sync always.

The situation, this time, unfolded as follows as per the timelines,

0th Second – Tom starts moving and weaving his hands in random directions. Tom feels freedom to choose the way he wants to move the hands. Jerry starts following him. Initially the rhythm seems to be good for both Tom & Jerry and both start enjoying the game.

10th Second – Tom starts increasing the speed of the movement, Jerry starts trying to catch up to the movements.

20th Second – Tom gets fast in doing the movements. Jerry struggles anticipating the moves of Tom and starts lagging behind in the synchronization.

30th Second – Tom & Jerry both are no longer in sync for the movements and the game finally ends as Jerry admits its very hard to catch up Tom and his movements.


Sequence 4 – Tom does random hand movements, Jerry follows him. After a while, Jerry starts doing some movements and Tom starts following him.

tomnjerry2 As a part of this sequence, Tom & Jerry were to share the responsibility of leading the movements alternatively. Tom was supposed to make random movements with his hands moving in any direction while Jerry will follow him. After a while, Jerry will take over the control and starts moving the hands randomly and Tom will follow him.

The most important part, was the rhythm should be maintained.   The situation, unfolded as follows as per the timelines,

0th Second – Tom starts moving and weaving his hands in random directions. Tom feels freedom to choose the way he wants to move the hands. Jerry starts following him. The rhythm seems to be good for both Tom & Jerry and both start enjoying the game.

10th Second – Tom gives the control to Jerry and Jerry starts moving the hands on his own, while Tom starts following him. The rhythm still continues to be good and synchronization looks still good.

20th Second –Tom takes the control back and Jerry is happy to keep following the movements of the Tom. This time, although, he is successful in following Tom for almost all of his movements.

30th Second – Tom gives the control to Jerry and starts following him.

The game actually continues for some more time, however does not show any signs of problems from either Tom or Jerry to continue this way. Ultimately, winning the game by meeting the objective.



In all the above four games, the leaders (Tom) used various leadership techniques to try and get the results and obviously Jerrys (teams) did have various emotions, feelings while following the Leaders.  Some, ending in failures, some ending in anger and few ending in confusion, ultimately some of them ending in great satisfaction. 

Obviously, I want to write more on the way the teams have felt in above, but looks this post is going to be huge if I continue to write.  So, may be I would keep the explanation of the human behaviour and mindset in a separate post for tomorrow / later.

However, till then, please let me know what you feel would have gone through the minds of all Jerry’s and Tom’s under each of above sequence.

I would like to hear your views too !


13th July 2010 is a very special day for us.  After all, my daughter Sanika, turns 5 on that day.

All these 5 years have been a journey of self discovery for me.  Being with Sanika all these years, observing her, teaching her, fighting with her, talking to her, loving her and sometimes scolding her has taught me several lessons in life. 

As she turns 5 today, I would like to share few lessons I have learnt in my life from Sanika which will stay with me for life.


sanika4Be inquisitive

Sanika has a curious mind and she always wants to know reasons on what we are doing. She always observes the situation and keeps on asking the questions until she is satisfied, or … I am absolutely irritated with her questions.  Why? is her favourite question. 

I believe asking right questions is a very positive thing one should do in life. Most of the times we assume things and keep quite and assumptions do not often turn true, hence eventually getting into conflicts etc., Sanika teaches me to ask questions about situation and myself until the time I am satisfied.




sanika3 Be unconditionally positive

One of the best part of being a child, is that world always beautiful. Sanika teaches me to be unconditionally positive about everything. 

She has one basic assumption.  “The world is full of good people, until proven otherwise” and her responses based on this assumption make everyone around her happy.

Over a period of time when we grow up, we tend to observe and remember bad experiences far longer than simple good experiences. Thus making us forget this basic life principle. If you think carefully, as we grow up, we tend to make our assumption as “World is full of wicked, bad people, until proven otherwise”. The more we think like this, tougher the life becomes.



sanu Forgive and patch up !

Yes, it takes guts to forgive and patch up with someone whom you have just fought. Myself and Sanika often get into conflicting situations, resulting into fights and us both not talking to each other for a while. However, more often than not Sanika makes first move to patch up and I appreciate her for that.

As we grow up, our ego grows up too and sometimes it becomes more powerful than what we ourselves are. Thus, preventing us to make a first move in order to resolve the conflict.

Sanika teaches me to be myself in the conflicting situations to avoid further damage to relationships etc.



SI850717 [1024x768] Explore the world !

Sanika is a brave girl who likes to explore new things in life. Probably it comes from the fact that she has been a huge fan and follower of the cartoon character of Dora the explorer.  She loves the character so much that in her early ages she used to pretend to be Dora, relegating me to carry out the duties of Boots the Monkey !

Often, this bravery has landed us in big troubles. Especially when she ‘escapes’ to explore things in a big shopping mall herself.  The lesson that Sanika gives me here is to keep an open mind to new experiences and situations. She makes her moves / decisions based on the situation as it comes and does now allow her presumptions, assumptions to come in her way to respond in a different way than normal.



SI852685 Know what you really want, just go for it !

Sanika, at this early age, knows what she wants to do and has developed few passions.  Swimming has been one of the passions that she has developed. She was always fan of water games, however since last few months she has developed a tremendous passion for Swimming and has learnt it within few weeks.  Believe me, I did not support her in the venture as I myself do not know swimming. She persisted and pestered her grand father to teach her swimming and did not leave it until she has learnt it completely herself. 

Her current passion is cycling !

I think it is important lesson for everyone to know what they really want to. Moreover, be fully committed to achieve it in life. Most of the people, I have seen prefer being driven by system or surroundings, however Sanika teaches me to have goals in life and be fully dedicated to achieve it.


Indeed, someone has said, its never too late to learn … but in Sanika’s case its equally true that its never too early to teach 🙂 !


Earlier I wrote another blog about how my younger son teaches me important lessons of life.  You may read them here ‘5 things to learn from 6 month olds!’