GHAURI – THE BOOK
It is strange that the successful businessmen in Pakistan avoid sharing their success stories with the young generation. They do not take the burden of compiling their life struggle.
Leadership Behaviour SALIM GHAURI
How do you define the word “LEADER”?
A leader is one who has the ability to achieve his/her goals with the help of his/her team. A good leader doesn’t achieve anything on his own. He always depends, believes and relies on the team. If you are doing any task independently, you are not a leader, you are an independent person.
If you are a self-achiever and a smart person, then you are not a good leader. Being a leader means leading a group of people. Most people in our environment would like to control everything themselves, though they have a group of people with them. But they would not like to take the value out of the people. They will take all decisions themselves. That’s what leadership is all about.
What sort of risks a leader should take and what parameters should be kept in mind while taking risks?
A ship is always safe at the shore – but that is NOT what it is built for. There is no reward for you if you don’t take a risk. There is always something in our lives that could go wrong. The biggest risk is not taking any risk. In a world that’s changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks. But a leader should take calculated risks. If you demand that I jump from the sixth floor of the building, I will not jump. But I may jump from first floor.
We do each and everything in life after planning and judging the pros and cons of that matter. Still something happens that is not under our control. So there is always a risk. You can minimize your risk by doing your homework, assessing, looking around and checking all the factors. That’s called a calculated risk. But if you have no other choice except jumping from the sixth floor of building, then do it. Because that’s what leadership is all about. Leaders are not afraid. They take tough decisions because they have no choice.
Can you name a person who had tremendous effect on you as a leader?
I always talk about Steve Jobs but he was an innovator. As a leader, I will go for Jack Welch. If you read his history, when he took over GE in 1981 and became the youngest CEO in GE’s history, the legendary leader made a resolution to transform GE into the world’s most competitive enterprise. Welch is a strategic thinker, business teacher, corporate icon and management theorist.
If leadership is an art, then surely Welch has proved himself a master painter. With his unique leadership style and character, Welch made history during his 2-decade journey at GE. While most leaders talk a good game on leadership, he lived it. In this article, we feature Welch’s 12 lessons and how they contributed to the largest corporate makeover in history.
What will you do in a situation in which you encounter a situation in which you have to select one of the two candidates of equal qualities for one job?
I will hire both of them. Good leadership is about picking up good people. Whenever a leader sees good talent around him, he hires that for the company. But you have asked me to select one. Well, people can have same technical skills but personalities are very important. As far as I am concerned, I will first go through their technical abilities and professional experience.
After that I will go for their personality test, their confidence level, their energy, how they came out to me and their eyes- how shining they are and their handshake how hard it was and how firm it was. So a lot of things tell me that this person will be more competent. So personality matters a lot.
Can an incompetent manager provide a good working environment to his/her followers?
No, an incompetent manager can’t provide a good working environment to his/her employees. I have always said that I can accept mistakes but I will not accept incompetence. Incompetent people never take right decisions and they never encourage others to do well. So we must avoid them and stay away from them. I would fire that manager immediately. If you keep such individual for long periods of time then you and your organization will be in trouble.
Being the CEO of the leading software industry in Pakistan, what is the most important thing for you, MISSION, VISSION OR THE CORE VALUES?
All three of them are important. They are very interlinked. Core values are your internal behavior. How you behave in life. They are the standards of conduct through which one’s actions are judged as right or wrong. For any organization to succeed, your core values will play a major role. You should have a vision to achieve your mission. Don’t just think about making money.
Try to become a genius. Don’t follow money. Follow your core values, vision and mission. In return, money will follow you. Core values are the center of your achievement. High core values will result in the success of an organization.
In books we have read that “Honesty is the best policy”. But in real life, we see that dishonest people are more successful and honest ones. What is your point of view regarding this matter?
Dishonest people are richer. But they are not successful. They make lot of money but they don’t contribute to the society. Success comes from what you contribute to the society. Money has no relation with success. So many people have so much money but the society never recognizes their contribution. Take this example. You are interviewing a person who is not as rich as many of the great industrialists.
You might have not heard of those industrialists. I think this example clarifies that money doesn’t make you a successful person. You passion makes you successful. So never ever degrade yourself. When you will be successful, money will automatically come to you.
In your view, what is the biggest characteristic every leader should have?
In my view, integrity is the most important thing every leader should have. Waste no more time arguing about what a good man should be. Be one. Integrity is the quality of being honest and having strong moral principles. Somebody once said that in looking for people to hire, you look for three qualities: integrity, intelligence, and energy. And if you don’t have the first, the other two will kill you.
To know your employees, you have to act like them. What your viewpoint about that?
The biggest challenge for me was to gather enough people to follow me. Good leaders get more out of their people. For example if I am paying 100 dollars salary to a person and I have not motivated him, then he will do the job of 100 dollars. But if I am the person to motivate him, he will do the job of 150 or may be 200 dollars. Even your teachers are your leaders. If you don’t support the way they teach you, you will not gain maximum out of their teaching. Some teachers will leave a mark in your mind that you will never forget because they were very passionate to you. They taught you with passion.
What is your advice for the young leaders?
My advice is that as you come in your professional life; please don’t aim to make money. Making money is also important but that should not be your aim. Whatever you are and what your position is, always go for something that would be helpful for others. Don’t plan that I have to earn so much money. You will not be happy after making money. Happiness will come to you if you become a person responsible for the welfare of your society.
Interview Credits: campusdiaries.com