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    Do not cling to winning formulae

    BANGALORE: Wednesday was not an ordinary day for hundreds of professionals in the city. Bangalore played host to a rare leadership session by one of the world’s top leadership experts and author of 10 major international bestsellers — Robin Sharma. This was said to be his only public event in India this year. The fundraiser was organised by Rang De, a web-based social initiative which is working with a long-term vision of lowering the cost of micro-credit in India.Homemakers, passionate youngsters, leaders, entrepreneurs and professionals from the corporate world came from different parts of the country, even as far as from Ahmedabad, Vishakapatnam, Mumbai and Gurgaon, to attend this session, to just have a glimpse of their favourite leadership guru and to learn personal leadership lessons to stay on top, and remain strong in times of turbulence. The packed hall at Taj Vivanta was testimony to his immense popularity not only among the corporate circles, but also among students and upcoming entrepreneurs. He certainly needs no introduction. Other than authoring books such as The Leader Who Had No Title, The Greatness Guide, Who Will Cry When You Die and The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari, he is also the CEO of a global training firm, Sharma Leadership International Inc, who’s clients include Starbucks, GE, Coca-Cola, FedEx, Royal Bank of Scotland, Aditya Birla Group and many other prominent companies. In the media interaction, when asked who his greatest inspiration was, he replied, “So many people inspire me. My readers, who are willing to bring a change in their life , inspire me. Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa, Steve Jobs, Richard Branson and there are many others whom I look up to.” On his fascination for Picasso, Robin narrated his experience in Barcelona where he read somewhere that “People were disturbed by Picasso’s work since he was so good at what he did.” Robin’s admiration for Picasso also reflects in his blog, which reads “Picasso didn’t play the piano. Federer didn’t learn the flute. All virtuoso’s have a mantra: “I avoid the trivial many so I can master the vital few.”When asked about the major problems facing the world today, he said, “There are four — Namely the massive societal upheaval, energy issues, global economic crisis and environmental issues. Things need to break down before it gets better.” He quickly asserts, “The common mistake committed by companies is that they cling to the winning formulae instead of taking a risk. It is a messy time for the unprepared, but a great time for those who are ready to challenge themselves.” He said that he has received incredible support from India and has a strong following on Twitter and Facebook.He narrates this story on how he started writing. “I was a litigation lawyer and I used to follow the crowd. There was this point where I decided to press the pause button and look back. I started reading a lot and spoke to a lot of people for a better understanding of life and leadership. My book, The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari was a self-published book.” On whether one’s life changes after reading books, he said, “It is not the books, but the reader who can bring a change in himself.” He asked everyone not to be seduced by complexities and focus on the basics. On the advice he would give to his kids Colby and Bianca, who are the most important things in the world to him, he said, “Have massive dreams, stand for excellence and be the kindest person you ever know along with being the most courageous person.”He signs with this piece of advice: “Discomfort of change is better than heartbreaking complacency.”