with our guest: Raj Sisodia
Raj Sisodia sits down with Bryan Miller to discuss not only the what it took to write his business-focused books but the deeper meaning of what it means to be a conscious capitalist and making a difference in the lives of your employees and their children. Their discussion shows how much can be learned if we don’t accept years of business teachings as gospel and instead challenge those previously accepted notions.
00:02:31 – Writing what you know.
00:05:25 – Meeting others needs.
00:11:22 – Silent Suffering.
00:18:39 – Maximizing profits.
00:24:26 – Paying employees as little as possible.
00:33:56 – The feminine perspective.
00:41:01 – Tough-minded and tender-hearted.
00:47:23 – Servants or slaves.
01:02:17 – Moved to tears.
01:06:50 – Executive pay ratio.
01:12:56 – Taking a book from an idea to completion.
01:23:26 – Slowing down the book to gain some insight.
01:31:53 – Rapid questions.
The Healing Organization (Ted Talk)
Shakti Leadership by Milimia Bhat and Raj Sosodia
Everybody Matters by Bob Chapman and Raj Sisodia
Theory of Moral Sentiments by Adam Smith
Does Marketing Need Reform by Jagdish Sheth and Raj Sisodia
Firms of Endearment by Raj Sisodia, Jagdish Sheth, and David Wolfe
Dragon Naturally Speaking Software
The Untethered Soul by Michal Singer
Intellectual Shamans – by Sandra Waddock
Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
BRYAN: 00:00:41 So Raj, welcome to the school for good living podcast.
RAJ: 00:00:44 Thank you Bryan. Very happy to be with you today.
BRYAN: 00:00:47 So, Raj, I want to start with a question. What’s life about?
RAJ: 00:00:54 To me, life is about, first of all, figuring out who you are, you know, gaining that self knowledge or your essence and what is it that makes you really come alive, so who you are. So knowing yourself, then learning to love yourself. Then being yourself and then expressing yourself, I would say are some of those key elements, you know, in terms of getting to a place of fulfillment and contribution. I think you need both of those things because you can have contribution without fulfillment if you’re not really being true to your essence, but you have some skill or some capacity and uh, if you’re not a, you know, you can have the opposite as well.
RAJ: 00:01:42 Uh, you can be fulfilled without actually contributing if you’re not expressing your gifts into the world. So I do think that that’s a, it’s to me, those, those are four of the steps that I would, uh, and you know, it’s taken me a long time actually to get to those.
BRYAN: 00:02:00 How have you gone about it and, and how can others go about it?
RAJ: 00:02:04 Well, you know, for me, I’ve had a, this is a year of some deep exploration and I’m writing a book about healing, which I’m sure we’ll get to a book about how business can be a source on the force for healing in the world. And as I was working on that book, I realized that I need to understand healing at a deeper level, not just at an intellectual level, and I also need to figure out what kind of healing I need and how I can achieve that.
RAJ: 00:02:31 So do some inner work and figuring out, you know, you cannot write about what you don’t know and you cannot teach what you don’t practice. So this year I’ve taken some time and I’ve had a number of experiences, uh, which are all aimed at that understanding myself, understanding my life, having it make sense, figuring out, connecting those dots that you can do looking back, uh, and I think it’s really helped me to take that time and, uh, and go through those experiences because I’m now able to come at this question of healing in a, in a more, uh, in a deeper and richer and better informed way.
BRYAN: 00:03:12 You think you’re writing the book. I mean, I know it’s this kind of truism that we teach what we need to learn. If you, if you had to say, do you think that you’ve taken on this book, the Healing Organization because it’s something you need to learn or are you learning these things for some other reason? Well, it’s usually a combination. Yeah.
RAJ: 00:03:34 Both. You know, my friend Nilimma, who I wrote the book called Shakti Leadership with often uses the phrase that which is deeply personal, is also completely universal. And what I’ve learned over the years now is to trust my instincts and to also listen to my body. So that when I have a thought or an idea and I have a physical reaction to that, not just a mental reaction which literally I can feel it in my body, then I know that it’s telling me something that that is something that I need to explore and I need to go down that path and every time I’ve done that or most of the times if I think back to all the significant things that have happened in my life and things, whereas when which I’ve been able to make a difference, it has been as a result of listening to that inner voice and listening to my body.
RAJ: 00:04:27 And so that happened with this word healing as well. You know, I had been using it in a different sense. I had been using healing as an acronym for the qualities of a great purpose and it stands for heroic, evolving, aligning, loving, inspiring, natural and galvanizing. So this. These are the elements I think that constitute a great purpose for a great company and I suppose you could apply them at your individual level as well, but I was thinking more about businesses, but then as I thought about it, I said, you know, we live in a world that has extraordinary amounts of suffering still. I mean, we have alleviated certain forms of suffering certainly compared to our history, but there’s still an awful lot of suffering. A lot of psychic suffering, I would say less physical violence, but more psychic and a lot of self imposed, but also things that we are imposing are doing to each other.
RAJ: 00:05:25 So there’s still a lot of suffering. And to me it occurred to me that every great purpose actually needs to be about healing. It needs to be about alleviating suffering and bringing joy in some way. And then as I thought about that deeper, I said, you know, fundamentally business is meant to do that. Business is meant to meet our needs and it’s meant to be an avenue of service and instrument of serving each other. To me, that’s the right energy with which we need to think about business in a free market system, individuals and companies given the opportunity, but also then the responsibility of meeting most of the needs of most of our citizens. Government only fills in whatever cannot be done by business, right, and nonprofits might do some other things, but businesses have this white canvas and if you approach that from the perspective of figuring out what are people’s real needs and meeting them in an authentic and sincere way and coming from a place of wanting to serve, then you’re going to be healing people through your business.
RAJ: 00:06:34 And of course, as you know, when you heal others, you heal yourself. And I think the problem is that we have made business purely about self interest and we have said it’s a way of achieving years. Pursuing your self interest. Everybody pursuing their self interest. And as part of that you figured out what other people need and make it and sell it to them. But if it comes from an energy purely of what is, what does it do for me? Then you end up using. And ultimately exploiting, I would say, other people in pursuit of your self interest and that then evolves or devolves into selfishness and ultimately agreed and exploitation follow. So I think ultimately where I conclusion on the book isn’t done yet, but is that business is fundamentally about healing and what seems like a radical thought at the beginning. You know that businesses can heal well. You can have healing organization and this is not healing businesses, but business as healing turns out to me at the end to say that that is in fact what business is about. Fundamentally.
BRYAN: 00:07:34 Your book conscious capitalism really changed my mind about a lot of things. In fact, I won’t say it changed my mind so much as it. I feel like it expanded my thinking and one of those being what you’re talking about now where you know previously business and even still has been taught, you know, the purpose of business, maximize shareholder value. And there’s this notion that we’ve been teaching in business schools for decades. And what you’re saying now about business can or ought to be about healing. And in fact, in your Ted Talk, you, you made the statement about healing is the meta purpose of our age. Will you say a little bit more about what you mean by healing is the meta purpose of our age?
RAJ: 00:08:18 Yeah. So I think we’re living in a time of tremendous contradictions in one way, right? So we have this 200 year history now of rapid progress with capitalism and free markets becoming more and more prevalent around the world. Uh, we have had a dramatic rise in per capita incomes, about 1500 percent on average the world after being flat for Millennia. We have had a tremendous decrease in extreme poverty rate, increase in literacy rates, a life expectancy, you know, many indicators of our wellbeing have gone up. So there’s been a lot of progress that we’ve achieved. At the same time, however, we have done that in a way that has actually inflicted a lot of harm on the planet, on other living beings, and even on human beings, I would say, on, on human beings as well as other forms of life. So we’ve seen all the data in terms of what we’ve done to the forest and the arable land and the large mammals are down 90 percent a large fish down 95 percent.
RAJ: 00:09:28 And um, you know, we know that the toxic burden, uh, out there in the environment is growing on our, on our bodies as well. The incidence of cancer is skyrocketing. Uh, and other diseases we know we’ve done significant damage to the ecosystem. Uh, hopefully not have. All of it is irreversible, but some of it seems to be. So. I think we have, we have, uh, we’ve had a lot of suffering that has gone on at the same time. You know, I would say that the cost of doing business and the human cost of doing business and even beyond that, actually the cost of doing business in all in terms of its impact on all forms of life has been huge, right? The loss of species, the loss of habitats, even the fact that, uh, as business, as, as, as our food production has become more industrialized and become a big business in ourself.
RAJ: 00:10:20 The amount of suffering of animals, 10 billion animals a year in the US, not including seafood are killed for human consumption and most of them are really tortured in a way before they become part of the food system. Right? So there’s an extraordinary amount of suffering and if you want to get mystical about it, I mean there’s energy that connects all of us and if you have suffering being a experienced, it has to impact, you know, sort of our, our macro system in which we live here. But then if you just think about humans as well, I think there has been a tremendous increase in stress. Um, anxiety, depression, suicide, all of these things that are opposite definitely in the last few decades. And if you look at statistics specific to the world of business, you know that heart attacks are 20 percent higher on Monday morning, that most people feel they work for a company that doesn’t care about them as a human being, as high as 88 percent of people, uh, employee engagement worldwide is only about 15 percenT.
RAJ: 00:11:22 Also, there’s a lot of silent suffering and people are poorly paid even in this booming economy, in the richest country in the world, with very low unemployment and the stock market at record highs. The fact is the vast majority of people are struggling. Sixty percent of our American households have a negative net worth. They are technically insolvent. Their debts exceed their assets and they’re going further into debt every year at a time of historically low interest rates. So when those normalized many more people will be in deep distress and 50 percent of Americans have less than $400 in the bank and would not be able to come up with $2,000 within 30 days if they needed it. So small problem becomes a catastrophe in people’s lives. So there’s, that is kind of the context within which we’re talking. So there’s a tremendous need for healing because there’s a lot of suffering and we also know that we have a tremendous divide within society, right?
RAJ: 00:12:20 The left and the right, for example, families are split apart over those issues. So we need to heal ourselves. It all the suffering, depression, anxiety, etc. We need to heal our families. We need to heal our companies, we need to heal our society. We certainly need to heal our ecosystem or environment, you know? And so there’s, there’s just a need for healing at every possible level. And to the beautiful thing is what gives people the most meaning in their lives is to alleviate the suffering of others. Right? So what, what is an enormous problem is also an enormous opportunity for us to gain meaning and purpose in our lives. As Lynne Twist said, we’re living in the most, um, how does she phrase it? We’re living at a time when I need to remember the exact quote that she has, but it is a time when more of us have a greater opportunity to achieve meaning and purpose than ever before because there’s so much potential and so much opportunity.
RAJ: 00:13:26 Yeah, those of us alive today can live the lead, the most meaningful lives, human beings I’ve ever met on this planet because there’s so much we can do to alleviate suffering and to bring more joy. So I think that that’s what we have to look at. We need to heal the past, we need to heal the present and we need to heal the future and we cannot move into the future until we heal the past, and this is where, for example, you look at what happened in South Africa after the end of apartheid and the truth and reconciliation process enabled that society to move forward without a huge amount of revenge fueled violence, which would have happened with all the people who had all the experience that they had had for so long, but they were able to move past that because there was truth and reconciliation. I think we need versions of that all over the world, including here in the US. There are many things in our history that we need to move fast, but those wounds are still open and we haven’t acknowledged and healed many of those things from the past and they keep coming up as we’re experiencing now.
BRYAN: 00:14:31 Yeah. When you mentioned in your talk that there are as many as many Americans with some sort of a criminal element in their background as there are people with college degrees. You know, and how our mass incarceration system is really not serving us. That was, that was a huge eye opener for me. And as you talk healing the past, healing into present, especially from some of the institutionalized racism that exists, you know, what happened with slavery, what happened with the Native Americans. I mean, as a practical matter, how do you think that we can go about that? I mean $330 million citizens roughly. How do you have a national conversation that leads to healing? What does that look like?
RAJ: 00:15:17 Well, that’s a deeper question that show that I’m not sure I have a great answer for you though. Um, I do think acknowledging, you know, even if you can’t do anything else, the thing is you can’t change the past, nor can you forget it. Right? But you have to come to terms with it and you have to acknowledge it and you have to apologize if, if need be. Now, this is not your fault, but I just say I didn’t enslave anybody, I didn’t kill the Native Americans, but there’s a collective consciousness and then maybe there’s some kind of collective, um, responds to that as well. I think simply acknowledging, you know, when people feel seen and heard and therefore validated, I think that that’s where it’s significant, you know, as opposed to downplaying and denying and minimizing things. So maybe it’s, you know, we need just person to person conversations out there and people simply expressing that.
RAJ: 00:16:24 But again, I think that’s a larger national conversation. We need to figure out how to do a… I do think it’s needed is a greatly needed him because there’s a lot of anger and all these things come from a place of deep hurt and fear and suffering. So all the outward manifestations are coming from some, some vulnerability and some unprocessed her feelings. Maybe even some guilt may be some shame, you know, I mean, there’s some things in some ways we need to have some more healthy shame in this country, you know, because if you don’t have healthy shame, then we’re basically shameless. And the shame I, I tweeted after this thought came to me is that shame is like, salt, know a little bit, goes a long way, but it’s essential for your health, right? So we need to have some healthy shame of things that have happened on our watch or have happened in the past, uh, you know, in our lineage or whatever it might be.
RAJ: 00:17:22 I think there’s some of that that needs to be cleaned up. But that’s, that’s, uh, I’m hoping that our book and others like it will trigger these kinds of conversations because we need to help. We need to heal ourselves and we need to heal each other and help each other. And as the Dalai Lama said, you know, our purpose in life is to help others. And if he cannot help them, at least don’t hurt them. And I think we’ve been doing a lot of hurting and not, not deliberately, but blindly unconsciously, you know, we’re, we’re, we’re inflicting a lot of suffering that, you know, there is a form of suffering that is noble as Victor Frank wrote so beautifully. You know, we can find meaning in our suffering. And people have taken terrible tragedies, you know, losing a child to something and then they launch a foundation to address that very thing and prevent other people from losing their children or, or like similar stories are so many. So there’s a way to find meaning in certain kinds of suffering. But a lot of the suffering that we have in the world of business is unnecessary and does not serve any higher purpose. It is simply coming from ignorance and um, uh, and, and as I said, a kind of blindness.
BRYAN: 00:18:39 Yeah. And as long as our, our method of doing business is oriented around maximizing profit at all costs and not contemplating the environmental costs, the human costs, you know, these things, I think that’s likely to continue. One thing I really would love to get your perspective about is what’s the alternative and how do you measure it? Because profit, I mean, you know, revenues minus expenses and bam, you know, with few other little tweaks, you’ve got it. It’s, it’s quantifiable, it’s a certain score card. But I mean, when I read a book like your book, Everybody Matters, you know, and, and I read about how incredible, you know, Bob Chapman’s journey has been in treating people like family and really dispensing with a lot of kind of the institutional rules for business. It gives me hope that it’s, you know, I mean I see that it’s possible, but how does any organization, how can they move away from looking at the bottom line is the sole metric and what else do they measure instead? And how do they measure it?
RAJ: 00:19:47 Yeah. So we need to, you know, we need measures of stakeholder well being, right? It’s not hard to know if your employees are happy and happy, not just nine to five monday to friday, but are they flourishing in their lives? That’s what, to me, Bob Chapman’s, the big insight that drew me into that story and convinced me that I should work on that book with him was, uh, the recognition that the way we lead impacts the way people live. That our leadership is the stewardship of the lives entrusted to us. So it’s not just nine to five monday to friday and what happens to their productivity and their level of engagement, but it’s really how they are able to show up at home with their children and in their marriages and in their communities. Right? So all of those are the consequences of how we operate.
RAJ: 00:20:36 And we can quantify some of that. Certainly we can quantify the level of happiness, engagement, fulfillment, satisfaction, you know, we can also like some companies that we’re writing it this book, they are consciously making the children of their employees as stakeholders. They say not only the employees are stakeholders but their children are stakeholders. So for example, if you’re a consulting company and you make it the norm that you have to be gone monday to thursday every single week because your clients are out of town, then you are putting a price, you know, the, you are causing a certain dynamic in that family with the children will not see their parents. Right. And is that too high a price to pay and is it a necessary price to pay? So this consulting company, Jabian in atlanta, has made a policy that all their clients will be local, right?
RAJ: 00:21:26 And therefore you don’t have to travel and if I find a lot of clients and other city will open an office there and hire people there, they live there, they serve those clients, right? So by that, by doing that, they are able to remove that huge cost which is seen and, and, and accounted for. Right? So we can look at all of our stakeholders in that broader way and say, are we truly know our business talks about, are we capturing market share? And that’s how they look at success in marketing right now. Are we truly serving our customers at a deep level? And I’ve been making their lives better. Right? And these things are not complicated, not hard to measure. Right? What kind of impact are we having on the environment? You know, one of the stories in our book is a company in Costa Rica called Fifth Call, which is in the beer and soft drinks business primarily and over about a 10, 12 year period, they went from being carbon negative.
RAJ: 00:22:19 And a water negative to becoming neutral, and now they are positive. They actually carbon positive water positive, right? And that’s just, that’s the environment for their employees, their customers. I mean, it all goes together, all of them. So you can, if you have a commitment to making those things better, you can actually track the wellbeing of all of your stakeholders. And you will also then see how all of that works together, right? The wellbeing of customer employees, first of all, it should be inherently important to you. Like Bob Chapman will tell you, even if that doesn’t mean anything for productivity, I still want to do it right, but we know that employees who are less worried and happier and you know are not on the edge of disaster and ruin, you know, obviously are going to be capable of so much more, right, then they can joyfully bring so much more to work.
RAJ: 00:23:14 So these are some of the happy ironies of, uh, of, of being in business is that you don’t have to trade off human wellbeing and planetary flourishing with profit. That comes from a mindset that is, it says, a very narrow tradeoff, oriented mindset. It goes back to even Adam Smith. You know, the original happy irony of, of, uh, of capitalism is, is that freedom leads to prosperity, right? The more freedom you have, the more prosperity. There’s no, that’s a beautiful thing because, uh, most people would or would not necessarily assume that it’s like you can’t have your cake and eat it too. Well, he can, you know. So in business we have all these wonderful possibilities, but it’s only our mindset and simplistic thinking that keeps us from that know. You mentioned profit equals revenue minus cost, right? I mean, that’s a simple thing. Even a second or third grader can understand that, but if you just then therefore say that our purpose is to just maximize profit, then that means you minimize your, your, your costs, and maximize your revenue, sell as much, charge as much whether people needed it or not, and minimize your cost.
RAJ: 00:24:26 How do you do that? You pay your people as little as possible. You a squeeze your suppliers, you externalize burdens onto society. You know, half your people are on food stamps or whatever else and you’re pushing other costs into the future. I know the environment, et cetera. Right? So you achieved that purpose, but that’s worth nothing. That’s, that’s you’re a parasite. That’s not a business. Right? So there’s another simplicity. As Oliver Wendell Holmes said, I will not give a fig for the simplicity on this side of complexity, which is what that represents, right? That’s simplistic. But he said, I would give my life for the simplicity on the other side of complexity, which is businesses about promoting flourishing of all life. that’s pretty simple right now. There’s a complex living system. That one, nice to understand, just like the human body, right? They’re all the organizations consists of organism.
RAJ: 00:25:19 So we have to understand how it’s a living complex, evolving system and how we can be a steward of that system for the flourishing of the whole. And when we do that, things become pretty simple in these companies. You know, they are self organizing, self managing, self motivating. You don’t need a lot of managers telling people what to do. We don’t need supervisors and bosses and bossing people around, you know, um, people are inherently, if they’re, if they are in the right place, in other words, if their personal passion and purpose aligns with what this business is all about, which should be a starting point, that’s how you hire people, you know, then they will do so much more than any manager can get them to do. So there’s a, there’s another kind of simplicity, but that comes after you’ve gone through the sort of mental shift to understanding, you know, how, how that system actually functions, which means you need systems intelligence along with spiritual and emotional intelligence.
BRYAN: 00:26:21 Talk to me a little bit about your book, shakti Leadership and why it’s important to have feminine values more fully infused into, into our culture, into our business. what does that mean?
RAJ: 00:26:36 Yes. I think this is one of the great lacks. That’s the word. Things that are lacking in the world and it’s lacking in the world of politics is lacking in the world of business. That for millennia, every societal institution has been run by men on a limited set of masculine values. Now we have some mature masculine values, which are strength, courage, resilience, focus, discipline, right? But then we have hyper masculine values, so domination, aggression, competition, winning results at all costs, sort of a zero sum view of the world, right? Winners and losers. And so if you look at human societies, for the most part, we’ve existed in this patriarchal systems with the dominates dominance of masculine energy. There have been some pockets of matriarchal systems as well, but it’s not about one or the other. So ultimately what we’re realizing is that all of us have masculine and feminine within us.
RAJ: 00:27:40 We’re all born with that as a human being. We have a gender, right? But we also have masculine energy and feminine energy within us. We all come from others, uh, so, so, so they yin and yang or whatever you wanna call it, right? Carl Young said, every man has an inner woman. Every woman has an inner man, but that inner woman, that feminine side has been suppressed and repressed, certainly in men, but also in women in many ways. So women have been suppressed and therefore that energy gets suppressed. But also the women who kind of make it into out there into this male dominated world, they are need to kind of leave their femininity behind, you know, so we had leaders like Margaret Thatcher and Golda Meir, who were called iron ladies, right? So the only ladies who made it in the world of politics were iron ladies. In India, we had Indira Gandhi is our prime minister in the seventies and into the eighties, but she was known as the only man in her cabinet, even though she was the only woman because she had to set aside because all of those things were seen as weakness, that they’re not associated with leadership and getting things done.
RAJ: 00:28:44 Now we are starting to realize what a toxic and limiting belief that was. A lot of research now is showing that the criteria for good leadership today is much more dominated by so called feminine values of compassion, caring, empathy, vulnerability, nurturing, et cetera. Inclusiveness. So that’s starting to be recognized. Now, of course we have many more women that are coming into positions of leadership. Women outnumber men in college dramatically. I mean 60 to 40 now, roughly in all industrialized nations and they do better, they get better grades, et cetera, so white collar professions are being statistically now dominated by women and with that will come a change in the culture, but I like to broaden the lens even more than that. There’s some demographic things that are happening as I just said, with education and other things, so that’s becoming the great equalizer in society when more things require higher education. Women have an inherent advantage there today, and this is in law school and medical school and this is what everything used to be only teaching and nursing today. Women outnumber men everywhere.
BRYAN 00:29:52 Why is it that women have the advantage or tell me, tell me about that.
RAJ: 00:29:56 That’s a good question. Why are women doing better in college? I don’t know that I’ve looked at that that deeply, you know, but there’s something there that women are a seemingly very well equipped in that sense for this modern world.
RAJ: 00:30:12 Not across every discipline, but in most on average, as I said, 60 to 40. But if I, if I then look back and something I just learned recently actually is, uh, is that the US system of government. So if you think about the US was a sort of a critical piece, you know, in, in our modern history of the world because in 1776, Adam Smith wrote the Wealth of Nations, right? That was a foundational text for understanding how markets operate. And 1776 was also the year that this country was worn as a, as an idea and rooted in freedom. So here’s Adam Smith saying, freedom leads to prosperity. Okay? bottom line, message of wealth of nations and societies that are more free will be more prosperous. And here’s a country being born that same year that is all about freedom, right? Religious political, economic freedom, right?
RAJ: 00:31:04 The common man or more essentially man actually was in charge of their own destiny by right of law. They didn’t have to be born into anything, right? So freedom was the sort of the central idea, organizing principle of the society. So that was all wonderful, but there was another dimension that got lost, so 17 years prior. Adam Smith wrote the Theory of Moral Sentiments and that was about the human need to care, right? Which is even more powerful than our self interest as any parent, you know, who has to choose between their child and themselves or you know, we’re saying caring is an extremely powerful human motivator. Right. So I. The phrase I use that capitalism had a mother and a father and they were both Adam Smith because he gave us both messages, but the father message was the one that got listened to as often happens right in our lives too.
RAJ: 00:32:08 We kind of take our mothers for granted and we want to live up to our fathers. But on the other side, so you have the US being born at the same time. And when the founding fathers, Ben Franklin and Thomas Jefferson and others were looking at setting up a system of government here. So they looked at all the models that existed in Europe and elsewhere, but they wanted to create something that went beyond. Because Europe still have these semi monarchical kind of society’s not true democracies, so they, they looked at the Iroquois federation, which I didn’t know much about it, but the Iroquois federation was created by as five or six of the tribes in the northeast when the europeans started invading this continent and these tribes that used to be rivals and warriors battling each other, they came together, the united front, and they developed a pretty powerful federation.
RAJ: 00:33:04 So that’s where the United States, ultimately it was going to be a federal system, right where states have rights and so forth that you cooperate together and you know, the whole is greater than the sum of the parts. So they had developed some pretty sophisticated ways whereby the whole was being led as well as the individual tribes, maintain certain identities and so forth. So there were elements of that that, uh, that showed up in the US system that they borrow now. But there’s one big element which was that in the Iroquois federation there was a council of women, and I think there were a council of elder women, maybe even grandmothers there. They were the ones who actually selected the leader, so the leader of the Iroquois federation selected was always a man, but selected always by women. Right? And if that leader was not doing a good job according to that group, then they could remove him and put somebody else in there.
RAJ: 00:33:56 So that kind of brought in that perspective, the feminine perspective. Right. Even those women didn’t want to lead the thing. They still had tremendous input into it. That got left out, right. Any version of that, you wouldn’t expect that exact thing, but some version. So even to the point where women did not have the right to vote for another 140 years. Right? And they were only founding fathers. They were no founding mothers, right? There was no women signatories of the declaration or any of these things. Now, Abigail Adams, John Adams, his wife would have been an unnatural to be, you know, and she argued with him a lot, you know, why are women not being recognized here? Said men left to their own devices, become brutish, okay, without this, this influence. But of course, all of that was ignored. So what I’m trying to connect the dots here is that our democracy evolved with a surplus of masculine energy, right?
RAJ: 00:34:54 And it’s all rooted in freedom, self determination, rising from nothing to great heights, overcoming great odds, strength, courage, resilience, all the admirable and wonderful masculine qualities. Those were the heroic qualities of this country. But the feminine side was completely left out. The inclusive nature became a highly individualistic society, right? And inclusiveness and the need to care for each other and just having the caring orientation even towards our employees and our customers, etc. You know, it just became about self interest in pursuing my dream and my passion and my vision in order to meet my self interest. And that very quickly then devolves into selfishness and greed and exploitation. So then if you look at how that evolved in the 19th century, um, you know, over time, as we started to have large corporation, the other thing is the way we organized companies, the only large organizations that existed were armies.
RAJ: 00:35:57 And so we borrowed from the army’s right, how do we, how do we actually organize and lead large numbers of people. So we are the hierarchical way of structuring the organization, the command and control approach to leadership. And then over time, even the lexicon, you know, strategy, tactics, operations, frontline’s, headquarters, staff line, I mean all of these execution, execution, all of these are military terms. Every fire people, right? We aim for this, we shoot for that. We capture market share. I mean that whole mindset came over. Business became another form of war and in fact, to the point where the largest army that they exist in the United States in the late 18 hundreds was the Pinkerton army, which was actually a private army which had more men and more guns than the US army. And it existed purely to be hired by, by companies to achieve their goals, which often meant putting down restless workers or workers that we’re looking to strike or protest.
RAJ: 00:37:02 Many stories of that at Carnegie Steel and other places. I’d rather Pinkerton’s came out open fire because when companies started to just focus on, you know, became more about greed, exploitation, etc. You know, they started abusing their workers and squeezing them and Carnegie went from five days to six days a week and 10 hours to 12 hours a day and cut, pay all at the same time in the steel plants and literally 10 percent of people are falling dead a year from exhaustion. And when they started protesting and blockading the entrance to the steel plant, the Pinkerton army was called in to put them down and shot a bunch of them and killed them. Right? So that if you look at that energy, it gave rise to greed, exploitation, selfishness, which gave rise to unionism, ultimately militant unionism, the whole labor versus management adversarial relationship, right?
RAJ: 00:37:54 Which ultimately then lead to the appeal of Marxism socialism as an alternative form and communism. Right? So you would say that all of that happened in the world as a response to capitalism being practiced in a certain way. And that certain way I would say is excessive masculine energy to the point of hypermasculine. Right? So stepping back from all of that so that that was kind of got us, and of course we know what kind of suffering was caused, therefore by the rise of socialism, communism, and having the whole world and divided into these warring camps of alternative ideologies, one of which arose in response to the abuses of the other.
RAJ: 00:38:38 So what was missing, as I said, was mother energy, right? Caring, compassion, inclusiveness, and I would argue that there are two other energies to. So we have the system that was purely father energy and that even you could almost say it was an angry father energy. Kind of like the god of the old testament, right? Asking for human sacrifices and kill your baby to prove that you love me. I mean there was that the image of god is an angry father. That’s kind of the image of god. So that was kind of our societal operating system, if you will. But I think what we need is actually you need, you need the father energy, right? Freedom, self determination, courage. So you need the mother energy, caring, compassion, empathy, inclusiveness. I think you also need what I was calling god energy. You could also call it father a elder energy which has meaning and purpose. See meaning and purpose is not something that’s we used to talk about in the old days because most human beings, you know It was hard enough to survive to get through life. There was very few people have the luxury to think about what is the meaning of my life? What’s the purpose of my life today? Of course that is a burning question, right? 80, 90 percent of people are motivated by purpose, so we need that purpose. That to me, that’s the god energy or the elder, and then we’d need joy, right? That’s the child energy.
RAJ: 00:40:09 You know, our workplaces have become almost like prisons. They can be like playgrounds. How can we create workplaces that are more like playgrounds and less prisons? That’s where actually wonderful things happen. You know, innovation and creativity and all those things happen when we are connected to our inner child, right? So we need all four of those energies to be operational in business and that’s what leadership is about. It emphasizes more than mother, father, you know the masculine and feminine, but in there we also talk about your highest self and your child self, right? You need to be in touch with your higher self, which is that god’s side and what that purpose and meaning and your child self, the joy and the creativity. So the summary phrase that we actually came up after the was published. It’s not in the book, but we need as leaders to be the wise fool of tough love.
RAJ: 00:41:01 You’ve got wisdom and foolishness, toughness and love altogether. It’s not saying, let me pick one of those. You have to have all those energies, right? Wisdom, foolishness, which is childlike, toughness. Love, as Martin Luther King said, we must be tough minded and tender hearted at the same time. Right? So how do we create organizations that are built on that and that means we need leaders who have all of that.
Bryan: 00:41:28 Where will we ever find those people?
RAJ: 00:41:32 I’ve met a few. Okay. I mean, I would say in the world of business, the one who comes closest to me is Herb Kelleher of Southwest airlines. I have the opportunity to have dinner with him once and then interviewed him extensively in his office and he was already retired, but I mean he’s a legendary leader and he is. He’s brilliant and he’s hilarious, you know? Great. Great.
RAJ: 00:41:56 Yeah, that’s sort of a gesture energy to him. As tough as they come for the first 10, 15 years of their existence. They were basically fighting to survive because all the other airlines, we’re trying to put them out of business and he said, this is un-American, this crony capitalism. Here are the airlines. Get to keep competitors out because they’ve got all these sweetheart deals with Washington. Right. So tremendously strong and resilient and you know, when they went public, the stock market symbol is love. It’s a company built on love, L U V’s their stock market symbol. Right. And we’ll also interviewed colleen barrett who was the president, his legal secretary. He was a lawyer and ultimately she became president. He was the ceo and she said it was very simple. Herb was the dad and the mom, you know, I mean he had the loving them too, but she manifested that. That was, uh, the culture of southwest airlines, which is the most unique asset as it is for most great carb conscious companies as well. Colleen barrett. So I would say I was like that. I will say that the Dalai Lama is like that. He’s a wise fool of tough love, you know, he’s all of those things. It is rare. Uh, but Gandhi was like that. Gandhi had a great playfulness to him, but tremendous toughness, great wisdom coming from a place of love.
BRYAN: 00:43:19 One thing I, I really like about the way you articulate about why being a wise fool of tough love is that once we have a concept for something, we’re much more likely to attain it or to realize that or even move in that direction. Right? In these four dimensions of the masculine feminine, the elder and the child is really cool modeling thing.
RAJ: 00:43:39 We also call it the holy family reunion, it’s the holy family within us, right? Mother, father, child and elder.
BRYAN: 00:43:47 Yeah. That’s great.
RAJ : 00:43:49 Yeah. Maybe that’s our next book the wise school of tough love. I don’t know.
BRYAN: 00:43:52 Yeah. You know, one thing I’m struck by is I hear you give me such a great history lesson on my own country and our country. I know, but I’m really amazed that this is a, you know, someone within an engineering background and marketing a deep marketing background and very clearly like a sociology background, a history background and political background. It’s, it’s really fun just to talk to you.
RAJ: 00:44:18 Well, thank you. You know, and I know I’m fascinated by american history. I think the founding fathers were incredible and I’ve read, I think full length biographies of most of them, but I also, one of the things that I have come to understand about my own journey is because I grew up in a way unique way. I am simultaneously an insider and an outsider.
BRYAN: 00:44:37 What do you mean? What’s unique about how you grew up?
RAJ: 00:44:39 Well, so I was in India for the first seven years. Okay. If my life and literally in a village for most of that time, a tiny little village without electricity or running water and a very feudal system, extremely patriarchal, uh, I would say largely misogynistic many ways. Abusive, you know, extreme, a masculine energy type of environment because I come from a very futile subculture. India has many classes and subcultures, etc.
RAJ: 00:45:07 But this was a particularly is kind of a war… a warrior that cast and then within that a feudal kind of a sect. So I grew up with all of that around me and I saw that right. But then I was seven when we left India, my father, meanwhile had gone to Canada to get his PHD in agriculture science and plant science. So at the age of seven we moved and we moved to Barbados and lived there for two years. And then the age of nine we moved to California and I lived in a town called Salinas in Monterey county near San Francisco hundred, 800 miles from San Francisco in the late sixties, from the age of nine to 11. And these were momentous times in California. You know this was the height of the Vietnam war, the peace movement, the psychedelic revolution, you know, the civil rights movement, Martin Luther King, Malcolm X both getting killed.
RAJ: 00:46:01 And then Robert F. Kennedy, who had just won the California primary, we’re watching live on tv, I remember that moment even today, and he gets shot and killed, you know, all that hope and idealism and you know, the riots in Chicago and at the convention and man landing on the moon, all that happened in those two years, you know, and I was at an age of absorbing and seeing all of these extraordinary things. And then we spent a year in Canada after that. And then we moved back to India when I was just about 12. Right. And so five years abroad and then back to India. And now having come from that background to look at India in 1970, it was like going back in time a century when there was no television, there was no, uh, I mean the village was still where it was in the 1800’s and all those cultural norms and mores was still there.
RAJ: 00:46:53 And I could look at it now with such an outsider’s perspective, right? Because I was like a little American kid at that point, you know what I mean? Five years is a long time in the life of a 12 year old. Right. So you kind of imbibe all of that and then you come back and you see all of this stuff and I could see my cousins and uncles doing things which were horrifying to me, but that was part of their system and they’re, you know, that’s how they were brought up and you know, it was…
BRYAN: 00:47:20 Will you give me an example of something like…
RAJ: 00:47:23 Well, once we have servants were commonplace right in India and they were almost a form of, I would say not quite slavery, but on that spectrum, you know, indentured servitude. So we have this, this family who’s been working, you know, because my grandfather lived in this big fort like house, you know, with a joint family on the top of a hill and you had these hereditary kind of servants whose families had been working for us for, I don’t know how long and so one of those kids, teenager, I think he must have been 13, 14.
RAJ: 00:47:53 He was sent to work at our house in the city because my father was a professor at the university there, so we lived about 35 miles from our village and he, he was there to do, you know, basic work around the house and at one point he may have done something wrong. I forget what he did, but he did something that was, that was, that was wrong. And so my cousin from the village came, you know, to teach him a lesson or to set him straight. Right. And I’ll never forget this, we had a tree out in our yard. He tied this guy with a rope. Okay. To that tree. And then he whipped him with his belt or something. I don’t know what he used to whip him. Okay. But you can just imagine that scene. It’s like from 12 Years a Slave or something.
RAJ: 00:48:36 I’m looking at this, I’m 13 or 14 years old, right? Looking at this kid my age, being whipped by my cousin who was a sweet guy as far as I know, but this is what you do and this is what they did. And to them it was the natural order, but I could see within our side, as I said, oh my god, I saw the misogyny, I saw the way my grandfather yelled at the women in the house and they had no voice. They sat on the ground with their heads covered. Could not say a word, you know, my grandfather never saw my mother’s face because she always had her face completely covered in front of him. So if he saw her on the street, he wouldn’t know she is. I mean, it was bad, right? So the extremes. and I got to experience that in far enough at an age when I could actually understand and kind of observe these things.
RAJ: 00:49:26 So, so it gave me, as I said, simultaneously and outsider and an insider perspective. And I, I was from that system in a way. I mean, I was born into that, but I didn’t become part of it and I still was able to look at it and see. And also, you know, my own, uh, I was, I was brought up by my mother essentially as a single mother in that, in that household because my father was away at college and grad school and PHD, so he was never around, so I was basically brought up by my mother and she’s a very gentle. She embodies all of the feminine virtues purely right. And she has no, no agenda. She’s understand, she’s loving, that’s all, all she, she’s, you know, she’s all about serving and taking care of people. So I had that from my mother and then I had this ability to look objectively at everything else, right?
RAJ: 00:50:15 So I became sensitized to the abuses of the masculine and the extreme patriarchal approach, you know, it was very vivid in me so I could see that. Right. and so having had those experiences and having the nature that I was born with and having my mother sort of, um, you know, even more deeply embedded that in me, that way of being I think eventually came around decades later in my work because I know having them gone back to India then finished my high school and then, you know, those days when I graduated high school, there were very few career choices in India. It was a socialist democracy. Uh, the economy was dead. The government controlled everything, uh, the income tax, the highest marginal income tax rate. The year I graduated high school was 97 point five percent above a certain level of income you gave it all to the government.
RAJ: 00:51:16 Right? And everything was regulated and controlled. So there were only two cars that were produced in India at the time by two separate private companies. But these were like 20, 30 year old models. And there was a four year waiting list to get one if you could afford it, which hardly anybody could. What you could afford was a scooter two wheeler. So there was two italian brands, Vespa and Lambretta, which are now being made in India. There was seven year waiting list to get one of those, or you could buy it in the black market by paying level, right. Uh, there was a 14 year waiting list to get a telephone. So that was actually run by the government.
BRYAN: 00:51:54 That’s true? Fourteen years to get a phone. Is that true?
RAJ: 00:51:57 Yes, absolutely true. You know, um, and there was only one person in 100 who had a phone as recently as 1995 in India. So in that economy, you know, if you are good at math and science, you try to get to engineering and the only few good engineering schools and if you’re good in biology and science, you try to become a doctor and if you want good in either of those things and god help you, you know, may maybe maybe you get a government job, something, get a bachelor of arts, but uh, so I ended up going to engineering without really having a passion for engineering just because I happen to be good in math and science. And then I worked briefly as an engineer and then I had learned that if you get an MBA, which was a relatively new thing in India, that time, uh, that uh, your salary would double compared to an engineer and you would work in an air conditioned office. That’s a big deal in bombay working in a factory.
RAJ: 00:52:52 So I was in a factory after my engineering. Then as soon as I got admission to business school, I left. And uh, so two years later I’m almost finished with my business degree and then I see a group of my friends dressed up and going somewhere on a day. We didn’t have any classes and I said, are you guys going? And so we’re going to the US information agency to get GMAT applications. That’s the graduate management admission test. I said, why do you need that? We’re already doing our MBA here. Said, no, we want to apply for a PHD in business. Said I didn’t know you can get a PHD in business. I said, give me five minutes. I’ll come with you while I was still in my pajamas. right? And I did. And so because I, you know, I haven’t lived here as a kid, I, I left to come back, but I didn’t know how, right.
RAJ: 00:53:36 I don’t know how I didn’t have the money to actually pay for a US university education. Uh, but they said you get a scholarship. So I said, okay. So I applied and either the irony is that all of that group of I think seven or eight of us, I’m the only one who came here to get a PHD in business. Okay. And I got a full scholarship to Columbia and Michigan and cornell and North Carolina. And so I ended up coming to Columbia university to get a PHD in marketing and I call myself an accidental professor because that was not a plan. I had no plan, actually plan was get a job and survive. Right. And so this became just a way to come to the US all expenses paid, right? I mean full scholarship. And so I did. And that’s okay. I guess I’m going to be a marketing professor now, you know. Now the, the difficulty of that.
RAJ: 00:54:27 Or if you look at who does a PHD in business right, so if you look at the Americans who were in my PHD class, I think they were in right in that group at Columbia, I think they were two of us indians on the restroom right now. Those Americans who chose to do a PHD in business are highly motivated. Okay. Because they already had MBA’s and they could get a high paying job and their salary would increase, but they really had to have a passion for research and teaching and all of that. So we had a professor who at one of the dinners that we’re at a somebody faculty member’s house early on to welcome us. He said, you know, you guys, PHD students are unique species of people because you’re willing to forego current income in order to forgo a future income.
RAJ: 00:55:16 And you know, that was true for the Americans, you know. But for me it was just a way to come to the US i didn’t have that same drive. Right. So, but I finished my PHD and I started teaching at Boston university. But you know, I, this was not something that resonated with me at a deep level and as I learned more and more about business and the philosophy of business and the whole shareholder value maximization and you know, it’s a dog eat dog world and it’s not personal, it’s business and it’s apparent in only the paranoids or that whole story of business just offended me at a human level, you know, that it just seemed like it was just a very, very toxic way of being. So I never quite latched onto that story just based on my own personal nature, you know? And then I happened to be in marketing.
RAJ: 00:56:02 And if you, if you come from a semi socialist country like India to America, this a mecca of marketing, right? In those days America was five percent of world’s population. I think something like 70 percent of world marketing spending was happening here right now. It might be more like 40 percent with all the rise everywhere else, but, but the amount of marketing, which is huge. I mean the Sunday paper was this thick with ads. Television is inundated. Everything is sale, sale, sale. Every site and window is filled with, you know, a lot of hype and hoopla and coupons. Your mailbox is stuffed everyday. Oh my god, I got mail. Oh actually it’s not as as junk. No, it goes straight into the trash. I mean, after a while I was just like, this is insanity. You know, this is what, you know, how can this possibly be worth it, you know, 1,600 ads a day targeted at.
RAJ: 00:56:52 It’s actually varies from 1,600 to 3,`000 depending on different studies, but so much communication. We’re inundated with constant sales and promotions and gimmicks and sweepstakes. And it just seemed to be so excessive. So my focus in my research became marketing ethics because I fell a lot of it is misleading and efficiency and effectiveness, you know, we spent so much and what do we get for it? So long story short, I did 10 years of that kind of work and eventually, um, I made the case pretty strongly through my work that marketing was broken. We’re spending so much money and we’re getting terrible outcomes.
RAJ: 00:57:32 We estimated in 2004, 2005, we did a study on the image of marketing. Eighty eight percent of Americans don’t trust marketing even though marketing exists supposedly to create value for customers. And we found that here, that the, uh, collectively we were spending a trillion dollars on marketing a year. Okay? Now in 2005, that was the GDP of India. Okay? One point, 1 billion people were living on what we were spending here on ads, coupons and junk mail and things like that. I’m not selling. Selling is another trillion dollars. All the salespeople that’s separate. This is just marketing on a per capita basis. That was something like $3,500 per person or $14,000 per family. And that’s more than the 85 percent of the world’s population lives on what we’re spending on ads, coupons and junk mail. So my question was very simple, what are we getting for this? For companies, for customers and for society.
RAJ: 00:58:33 And the answer at each level was not much. In fact, negative things are happening. Companies are getting very low returns. Customers don’t trust marketing, but they are getting hooked on junk and bad things and it’s creating, you know, in young women, for example, body dysmorphia, eating disorders, depression, because of the way women’s bodies are used to sell stuff, right? Uh, and society is also a, in many ways the culture is being negatively impacted and we have the rise of obesity and diabetes and many other things that are coming from over consumption of certain kinds of. So my, the net story was that fundamentally marketing has become a negative force in the world, you know, so we did a book called Does Marketing Need Reform, and then I started a book called The Shame of Marketing. Okay. Think about that. Not only, it wasn’t proud of my profession, I had all this angst about it and even shame.
RAJ: 00:59:27 Okay. I felt we had a lot to answer for. It is a phrase that had been going by Peter Drucker some years before, but it really resonated with me, you know, and I was going to do a whole book about how terrible marketing is. You know.
BRYAN: 00:59:41 Why didn’t you finish that book?
RAJ: 00:59:43 I didn’t finish it fortunately.
BRYAN: 00:59:45 How, why did you, why did you not finish it?
RAJ: 00:59:48 I’ll tell you why my mentor stepped in to save me from that project, but I have this inner dialog, you know, and I had this whole father fixation. I didn’t know him and that I, you know, I was, you know, trying to live up to my father. He was this brilliant gold medalist, a PHD, you know, heroic figure but extremely different from me and I, you know, we had been alienated for number of years in the middle because I got married to somebody he didn’t approve of etc. But still deep down there was this thing of being trying to be worthy of my father. And my inner dialogue was my father got a PHD in agricultural science in plant breeding. He’s trying to cure world hunger. Right? And I got a PHD in marketing, right. I’m trying to sell you some more potato chips.
RAJ: 01:00:34 That was my inner dialogue. He never said that, but that was my lack of self respect and some degree of shame about it. So I started that probably. But then my mentor at Emory university, professor Jack Sheth. And I was going to write the book with him. I put a book proposal together with his name on it. He said, you know, Raj in America, people want to hear about the solution, not the problem, and that’s simple but profound, you know. And so I just turned it around. I said, most companies spend a ton of money on marketing and are lousy customer loyalty and trust and the more they spend, the worst things can get. What are the opposite examples, companies that don’t spend a lot but have very high customer loyalty and trust. So I called it In Search of Marketing Excellence. I changed the name and then we started to look for that.
RAJ: 01:01:24 And so we found these companies where that was true. The employees also love them and their communities embraced them and their suppliers were loyal to them because these companies are actually looking to serve, not just use and exploit their customers. Right. And they were doing that with the employees as well, taking care of them, you know, and suppliers. And so. So they were stakeholder oriented and then we found that these companies also had a reason for being that was a higher purpose. I then they found the leaders were different and the cultures were rooted in trust and caring and fun and joy and love. So That became, that book became Firms of Endearment ultimately published under that name. And I remember the distinct moment, I think it was June 12th of 2005. I’m sitting in a writing retreat and at that moment I’m writing some of the stories that we had uncovered about these companies and what they did for customers or employees or the families of employees or communities and so forth.
RAJ: 01:02:17 And I found myself with tears in my eyes trying to write, deeply moved by the humanity that can exist in a for profit public company. You know. And I told my co author, I said, David, I’ve never experienced a positive emotion connected to my work before. I’ve never been moved in a positive way. You know, literally moved to tears by this. And I know this is my body telling me something here. And I feel like my purpose had found me that this is something that deeply resonated with me, that there is a way of being in business that is not ruthless, that is not dog eat dog, that’s not only the paranoid survive, that is not impersonal and dehumanizing, that is the opposite of all of those things and they seem to be a thriving company. So that was a moment where I had this sort of lightning flash that wow, I think my life from this day forward is going to be dedicated to this.
RAJ: 01:03:14 And then a few months later we finished our research and we did the financial analysis looking at how these companies perform for investors. And our expectations were very modest. We even wrote down our hypothesis they were paying people much better. Some cases double like Costco pays double of Walmart and provides 96 percent of healthcare costs. Walmart provides nothing, right? So spending a lot more there. They are taking care of their customers, providing a good experience for customers and generally good value. They are not squeezing their suppliers and paying them well. So suppliers are profitable and can be innovative. They are investing in their communities, they investing in the environment. They were paying taxes at a higher rate, so we said maybe financial returns are okay but not great because they’re spending more in all these areas. Now what we found was actually these companies outperformed the market by a nine to one ratio, like literally a thousand, 25 percent over 10 years, 18 public companies that we had in our sample versus the S&P at 125, right?
RAJ: 01:04:15 So nine to one out performance despite doing all these things and then soon we came to realize it’s because of doing all those things that they are performing.
BRYAN: 01:04:25 So Raj, why doesn’t the rest of the business world catch on to that? I mean if it’s so evident in this research and it’s repeatable, mean it’s not, you know, Costco’s not the only business. Bob Chapman is not the only business companies like the Container Store, that kind of thing. And maybe there is this slow adoption that’s happening, but why is this not just like…
RAJ: 01:04:46 Well, you know, I mean that’s why our movement movement exists. Change. see, there’s a deeply hardwired and ingrained mental model about business in people’s minds right now. The purpose of business is, I mean, I taught strategy for 20 years. I’d never used the word purpose once until 2007 or eight because the purpose was given to us.
RAJ: 01:05:08 The purpose was to maximize profit and how do you get there? Right? So it’s a given. It’s almost like gospel. You don’t question that, you know, it’s like go to the catholic church, this list of things, you don’t question it if you want to belong, right? So you don’t question the shareholder value maximization, you don’t question agency theory, you don’t question five forces of competition. You don’t question all of that. Milton Friedman said, only purpose of business, maximize profits. Must be true. Milton Friedman said it right and we’re all these things and all these theories got built around that and this becomes self fulfilling because when you teach somebody like Michael Porter’s five forces of competition, every your supplier’s competitors, your customers or competitors in the industry thing that rivals are bitter, you know, they’re your enemies and that becomes your mental model of the world. And then become self fulfilling because you act that way.
RAJ: 01:05:57 You never trust your suppliers because they could become your competitors. Right? So you treat them with arms length and hostility and suspicion and something. So all of these business schools are a big part of the problem because we have made that part of our core curriculum, our core curriculum is rooted in those doubtless. Right. And the business schools are very slow to change because faculty are smart and they got their education and training and their professors taught them this way and it’s a world view and it’s very threatening for people to let go of a worldview. It sort of takes away their own sense of self, like what am I, if that’s not true, what I’ve been doing all these years, you know, it’s very hard for people to let go. And then the other thing is, you know, one of the other patterns in these companies is that they pay their frontline people very much better than average, but their executives are paid more modestly.
RAJ: 01:06:50 The ratio is much lower, right? Costco is ridiculous. It’s like five… at that time. Jim Sinegal was paying himself $300,000 a year. Okay. And some of the cashiers were earning $80,000. Okay. I mean the ratio is very low. Whole Foods had a voluntary cap of 19 to one. Okay. The highest paid can not be be more than 19X. Public company average is 400 to one. Walmart is 1200 to one, right? CEO pay to median pay. So these are companies that at the top they pay more modestly because the leaders actually care about the purpose and care about the people and they’re not just about money because if money’s the only thing you care about, if you hire a leader, not only cares about money, this is all they’re going to do, right? Yeah. Oh, I’m sorry. If you hire a leader based upon wanting to pay them, you know at this much, then you will get a leader who only cares about money if money is the only reason why they’re coming to you.
RAJ: 01:07:45 Right? But these companies have leaders who actually care about things beyond that. So the. The reality is that most companies and most boards of directors today are populated by people who have a deeply ingrained mental model and this value system that is rooted in ego and power and money. These are people who primarily care about power and money. Okay? In that sense, they are less developed overall as a human being. You know, it’s, it’s like going to a buffet and you’re never satisfied. I mean, any amount of power and money will never be enough for somebody who only cares about power and money. Okay? You could have $100,000,000, but your neighbor has 500 million. You feel quite poor, right? You’ve got 100 foot yard, but your neighbor has 200 feet yards? There is no end to that game. You know, you’re 76 on Forbes list with a, you know all that.
RAJ: 01:08:37 There’s no end to that. Right? And therefore, if people are motivated by those things and you come along and tell them all these things, the only thing that can happen is some of them will say, oh, I see in chapter six that the financial performance is much better, therefore we want to do this, and my answer to them is, if that’s the only reason you want to do this, and it probably will not work. In fact, I can almost guarantee it won’t work because these are not tactics. These are tenets. Okay? Tenet is a pillar of fundamental belief that they should be a higher purpose to each of our lives as well as each of our organization that we need to ensure that we are actually taking care of all of our stakeholders and employees and their children and their families are able to lead a good life itself.
RAJ: 01:09:26 Those are not tactics. You don’t say that, you know, I mean, I know that happier employees are more productive, therefore I want happier employees. Okay, well guess what employees will see through that. The only reason you care about my happiness is so that I can do more for you, right? It’s like my friend Fred Kaufman in his book has a, has a nice analogy for this is like if a, let’s say you’re proposing marriage to somebody, right? And you get down to your knees and say, will you marry me? And the woman asks, why do you want to marry me? And you say, well, I just read that married men live six years longer and they earned 30 percent more over their lifespan. That’s why I want to marry you. Right? You know, you’re not going to get married, right? So again, we do that with, in business all the time, right?
RAJ: 01:10:10 We do these things purely from a mercenary standpoint. People see through that and it has to be a purity. You have to do the right things for the right reasons.
BRYAN: 01:10:20 People feel that.
RAJ: 01:10:22 So there’s a lack of, um, you know, slowly it’s changing. But the people who have see our system is designed to elevate people into positions of leadership based on their ability to deliver numbers. Okay. Especially public companies and even other businesses, right? If you deliver the numbers year after year, you’re going to get promoted, but studies are now showing there’s one in Australia that looked at the psychological profiles of people who climb the corporate ladder most rapidly and they found that there’s a much higher percentage of those people who had a sociopathic mindset. It’s about twenty percent. Okay, qualified as sociopath’s because they’re only about their own objective. They don’t care what is the human cost, how many people you have to trample over to get there. That’s what we reward that even in the US. That was a study that found, I think the incidents of sociopath in the population at large is one percent. It’s 20 percent in high security prisons and it’s about that in in executive ranks. Okay.
BRYAN: 01:11:28 Is that world, in the United States.?
RAJ: 01:11:31 So one is an Australian study, which was about the people who realize most rapidly and the other one was a us study that estimated roughly 20 percent. Right? So that’s what we’ve created in the world of business, right? It’s the ruthless achievers who get promoted, but at what cost? And the way in which they achieve those results is actually planting the seeds for future disaster. Right? Because you’re trampling people, you’ll become terrible place to work. Eventually. Nobody want to work there. Nobody want know that all comes back. Which is why in the long term these conscious companies do so well because you know all of that gets around. You know,
BRYAN: 01:12:14 It all comes back eventually.
RAJ: 01:12:16 It all comes back. This is karma. You could call it karma capitalism too conscious capitalism.
BRYAN: 01:12:22 Well, I’ve had so much fun talking to you and learning from you in this conversation that I haven’t reserved as much time as I would have liked to talk about writing and to ask a few of the other questions, but in respect for your time, I do want to ask you just a few more questions and then wrap up and I do want to make a point to ask a bit about your writing because I understand you’ve written more than 500 articles and pieces.
RAJ: 01:12:50 I don’t know if it’s 500. that’s probably more like 100 academic articles and I think about 11 to 12 books probably.
BRYAN: 01:12:56 What’s your process for taking a book from an idea to completion?
RAJ: 01:13:02 You know, it varies depending on the, um, the kind of book that it is, you know, uh, there are some books where you need to do a lot of research and formulate your ideas and so forth as you go. Right? You don’t have it all in your head. And I think my first book, the rule of three was kind of like that. Some of the earlier stuff that I did was also like that. Even recently I did a that is more like that, but then there are other books are firms of endearment actually was a joy to write, but there was a lot of research that needed to be done. Right. We started with, we trying to identify those kinds of companies that everybody loves. We started with the nomination process of 500. We quickly screened out companies based on which ones did not meet all the criteria.
RAJ: 01:13:50 And then we had 60 that we did detailed case studies on and then we selected 28 of them and then did more in depth work on those. Uh, so that took a lot of time and we didn’t know what we were going to find. Right. So it was a discovery process in the research itself. And so that was where it was, as I said, a joy to do it because what we were discovering it on what we were learning along the way. And my coauthor and I had divided up the chapters pretty much. And we… I did. I got most of the research, I got my MBA students involved in doing some of the research so that it would move pretty quickly once we, once we figured out what the story was going to be. But as a sharp contrast to that was when we wrote conscious capitalism.
RAJ: 01:14:35 Um, you know, when we wrote the conscious capitalism, John Mackey and I had a pretty clear idea in our mind of what we wanted to write. We kind of knew what we wanted to stay in the whole book and the method. The process that I use for that is something I’ve done a lot for more casual writing, which is I create a mind map if you’re familiar with mind mapping, but it’s a way of getting all your
BRYAN: 01:14:57 Tony Buzan.
RAJ: 01:14:59 Yes, originated by Tony Buzan and I happened to be very good friends with my co author on my next book is Michael Gelp who is probably the world’s second expert on mind mapping after Tony Buzan.
BRYAN: 01:15:08 That’s a great co-author to have.
RAJ: 01:15:09 Yeah, he’s wonderful. He’s got lots of his. I think this will be his 16th book is really a wonderful student of genius and creativity and innovation and all that, so it’s a joy, but he. I had learned mind mapping directly from him and so then our use it. I use it now for every piece of writing that I ever do or any talk that I do, et cetera. I just create a mind map which is on one page you get the central idea and all the branches and you know, and it’s flows in a certain way and you’ll see the links as well. So what I do now for that kind of a project for a conscious capitalism, John Mackey and I simply created a whole bunch of mindmaps. We literally spent half a day on each mind map of each chapter, right? Three, four hours of brainstorming and getting all of our ideas and thoughts out and then organizing that into a single page with branches and words and all that. And then…
BRYAN: 01:15:58 How did you decide on that project? How many chapters for the conscious capitalist?
RAJ: 01:16:03 I think we just started with an outline was part of our book proposal and we just said, what are the things we need to say? We knew that we had four pillars of conscious capitalism, so each of those would be a section. We knew that under stakeholders there are at least six stakeholders. We needed a chapter for each of those, so that’s already 10 or 11. But then some of those like purpose, we need more than one chapter instead of… we want to tell the history of capitalism as well because very few people actually understand that. Including most business professors. I had no idea as a business professor what the history of capitalism was, a, we knew, we really talk about, you know, some of the other personal development kinds of things. So we knew we needed about 15 chapters, you know, so we started the outline and we created first an outline with a paragraph on each chapter that was part of our book proposal, but then eventually we refined that and we created mindmaps on each of those chapters.
RAJ: 01:16:51 Got, everything that we knew into those mind maps just as a bullet or as a, as a branch. And then we simply sat down and dictated, right? We literally put on the headset like we’re doing now and we’re dragon naturally speaking software. Uh, and we were able to dictate our thoughts about each chapter. We took turns, we sat together, right with a cup of tea and we just had our mind maps and we just talked whoever was leading, have the headset and we recorded everything at the same time. And that became a way to actually get all of our thoughts into a document very quickly. And we literally, like in the morning, we will, do you know, a couple of those.
BRYAN: 01:17:30 And how long did that process take you?
RAJ: 01:17:33 Oh we, we went from zero to 120,000 words in less than three months.
BRYAN: 01:17:38 Wow.
RAJ: 01:17:38 And the publisher only wanted 60,000. So then the challenge, we eventually got it down to 96,000. We ended up with a longer book than we intended. But uh, it was, I wouldn’t say effort less, but it was just, it was, it flowed so easily, you know, because again, we knew what we wanted to say. You know, John had 35 years of running Whole Foods to draw upon and he’s an avid reader and you know, he’s integrating. Plus I had done the firms of endearment work and we had been running the conscious capitalism movement was five years old already by that time, you know, four years when we started. So that just flowed. And then from that point it’s just a matter of editing and polishing and it’ll, that was version zero point nine. We went through three or four iterations on each chapter. But, but it just flowed beautifully.
BRYAN: 01:18:21 How did you find your editor for that project and how did you work with your editor?
RAJ: 01:18:25 in that case the editor was at Harvard Business school, publishing Melinda Marino. So when we sent out the book proposal, you know, she was the one who responded to us and she was our editor, she didn’t have to do a lot. We did send out the book for reviews with other people whose input we valued. And so we got some good inputs and you know, the whole process was, was quick three months for the initial draft and another six months for editing and iterating and then it was done. Um, so I find that that works. Something like that worked for Everybody Matters as well because there was a matter of getting Bob Chaplains story and then interviewing all the other people that were involved in that story or in that journey over the years. And then, uh, you know, just telling, telling a story, I mean, for that, I use the model of Viktor Frankl’s man’s search for meaning.
RAJ: 01:19:14 I don’t know if you read man’s search for meaning, but when the most impactful book I’ve ever read, and that actually is in two parts, so the first part is a scenes from a concentration camp, his experience at Auschwitz, right? So that’s the story. And the second part is logotherapy in a nutshell, which is a whole philosophy of how you find meaning and purpose. So that’s kind of became the structure where everybody matters. The first part was Bob Chapman’s journey as a leader, right? And telling that story and how these insights and aha moments and awakenings came to him and you know, how that ultimately grew and then all of that evolved into a way of thinking and leading truly human leadership. So the second part was really about that and how do you do it, how do you implement those things, you know.
RAJ: 01:20:01 So, uh, I think every book in that sense is unique. This healing book is a, is a lot about telling stories. Uh, so we’ve interviewed, I think we have about 20 different stories in the book right now. Some are really big stories in depth. A seven or eight of them, and I would say eight or 10 of them are smaller stories, but it’s really been learnings. It’s sort of an inductive process, you know, in what ways are companies actually doing this? How are they healing without maybe using the language, but in how are these companies healing their communities? How are these companies healing their customers, how are these companies healing their employees and the children of those employees. How are these companies addressing what we talked about earlier, which is 70 million Americans who have a criminal record of some kind, right? How are they are call it confronting social sadness.
RAJ: 01:20:48 You know, there’s thIngs in our society that have been, you know, sort of blotts. You know. Actually that’s a phrase that’s used by monica worline I think at university of Michigan. Stanford, she called social sadness, you know, so that’s like the, the people who are left out, you know, people who have been caught up in the criminal justice system, which our system is very, very harsh and unforgiving and many people paying an enormous price for what would be a minor thing or maybe not even a crime in many countries around the world in a very, very harsh system. And so many people are caught up in it and once they are caught up, you know, they never can recover from it. And as the rabbi said, uh, who started the Greyston bakery is I want to give people a first chance. There are many people who never even get a first chance in our country because they are born in these terrible surrounding ghettos, you know, travel, education of other fingers, violence and crime, no future, no hope. They get caught up. That’s it. They’re trapped, right? So, so we’re learning a lot. This is more inductive. This is a little more like firms of endearment in that sense. It’s more inductive and learning as we go. But again, joyful. Everything I do is just i’s just you, write with a smile on your face.
BRYAN: 01:22:05 Yeah. It comes through. Tell me about your schedule when you. How do you set a production schedule and how do you adhere to it? When It comes time to actually developing this content, getting it down and getting it refined?
RAJ: 01:22:20 Oh, well, typically publishers, will put a deadline on a contract. Right.
BRYAN: 01:22:25 And that helps.
RAJ: 01:22:27 That helps although like, in this case, our deadline was October 1st or October 31st for this healing book, but earlier this year I started to realize that if I’m going to write a book about healing, I need to actually experience healing in a deep way for myself and also understand it in a deeper way, you know, from, from books and from a, from teachers. So I just felt that I needed to do certain types of things in order to get there and I wasn’t feeling ready. You know, this, I think all books are, but this book is kind of a sacred undertaking because we are, we’re taking on what I consider a very large and meaningful subject. There’s a lot of suffering and if you ever want to write about healing in a meaningful way, we have to do justice to the idea or to the premise of the book, right?
RAJ: 01:23:26 So we can’t just, we can put out a quickie book very easily, you know, do a bunch of interviews, you know, it’s possible to do a shallow and quick book. I didn’t want that to be the case here. So I felt like I just needed more depth myself. I just felt like I wasn’t healed. I hadn’t figured out, you know, my past. I didn’t really know myself fully. I hadn’t come to love myself. I wasn’t fully manifesting my essential qualities, you know, so I needed to heal. And as part of that, you know, I’ve been on multiple. I went on a silent retreat, I went to the Himalayas and the in june with a group of 10 people and that was a different kind of spiritual experience, rooted in buddhist wisdom. I went on a retreat in the Amazon rainforest with the pachamama alliance and that was about learning how we are part of nature and how we’ve kind of become disconnected from our own spirit.
RAJ: 01:24:20 Um, I’ve started working with a coach and I’ve done some other kinds of journeys as well and I’ve done landmark forum and many other courses and read books and so forth. The Untethered Soul, for example, a beautiful book that I just finished. So it’s been a lot of deep exploration. So what I said to my coauthor and to the editor that we know we need to delay this book by a few months because it’s an artificial deadline to say October. So we delayed it till february and I was able to take the summer and do a lot of these things and I feel now just far more equipped to be able to do this book. I think, you know, the key thing about books and my editors, uh, the editor that I had on, on Everybody Matters was a wonderful experience. and as Michael and I were talking about writing a book together for many years because we’ve been friends for 20 plus years and we, we will be fun to do something together.
RAJ: 01:25:12 So we were just brainstorming projects and ideas and putting together a little proposal and sending them out and we send three or four of those out as ideas to this editor that I had enjoyed working with. And finally after that he kept saying no to all of them and finally said, you know, Raj, the time to write a book is not when you decide it’s time to write a book, you write a book when there’s an idea that is so important, that is just, you have to write the book that is just burning something that needs to be born. Okay. So don’t have this artificial thing has been two years since I published something. I better write a book, you know, so until you come up with that, because there’s no great book ever got written based on saying I need to write a book.
RAJ: 01:26:03 Because it’s time, books got written because they had to be written right. Viktor Frankl wrote man’s search for meaning in three weeks. Okay. Because it was burning, you know, it had to come out and it was ready to come out and I think so that’s ultimately what then guided us and it’s not until I came on this idea of this healing book that we felt really ignited from within. Right. As opposed to driven from the outside factor x. It was intrinsically motivated now, not extrinsically motivated, so we just feel this book needs to happen and we need to do it justice and for that we need to take the time it takes.
BRYAN: 01:26:45 That’s great. So if your deadline is february, what’s your publication date ?
RAJ: 01:26:49 Hopefully by September, October of next year, a year from now? We have our annual ceo summit, a conscious capitalism ceo summit in October every year. That’s always a good dead deadline to shoot for. If we can have the book launched at that conference, that would be great.
BRYAN: 01:27:04 Wow, that’s great. What advice would you give someone who’s standing on the threshold of starting their own book starting down that path? Or maybe it’s a Ted Talk for them, or a podcast, some creative work. What? What do you say? Or maybe they’re in the middle of it and they’re kind of feeling stuck or lost. What advice do you give to that person?
RAJ: 01:27:26 I think you have to go back to Why. Why are, why are you doing this? Why does this need to be done? What would be missing in the world if this did not exist? You know, because it can’t just be about your ego or about whatever you know or checking a box in academia, you know, people just write constantly, meaning what I consider meaningless articles, you know, which are not really addressing any significant questions, but they are going into great depth with huge analytical rigor on a, on a, on a narrow subject that ultimately it doesn’t matter really. So it has to matter. Why does this matter? Not just to me, but to others, right? This needs to matter to others. So what am I trying to bring into being here that’s going to matter. So being more driven by that as opposed to whatever it’s going to do for you.
RAJ: 01:28:23 I think is very important and then the other thing I think, which, you know, my parallel journey of working on this book and going on all these healing experiences has been kind of developing a personal, I’m calling it the part and I may do a book on that after I get done with the healing, whether it’s a path to inner peace and healing for yourself, you know, and I think that’s ultimately also about aligning with your life’s work. So everything that you do should in some way be part of your life’s work, your, your contribution. And it’s interesting. I’ve come in contact with a lot of shamans lately, right in the amazon and elsewhere, shamans that are about healing. And a lot of my colleagues at, uh, at Boston college wrote a book. I think I have it here somewhere.
RAJ: 01:29:13 It’s called Intellectual Shamans. Right? And she’s identified a group of academics or put me in that book as well, 28 of academics who are actually non traditional. They’re doing these things that are trying to bring healing to the world and they’re trying to change the world of business and they’re not just playing the academic game of publishing these many articles in these journals and getting cited by so and so and you know, that that whole thing that doesn’t motivate me or any of these other people in this book. So there has to be that, you know, how are we going to bring joy and reduce suffering or healing to the world. Right? And as I said, for that to be truly a manifestation of you, you need to understand yourself, right? And then you need to learn to love yourself. A lot of people think they know themselves and then they hate themselves, right?
RAJ: 01:30:01 Because, you know, they only see the flaws are they only interpret their own strengths as weaknesses, which I did too for decades, you know, and my father told me you need to be rough and tough and I was trusting and you know, and peaceful night. And he said, no, no, no. That’s, you’re going to get eaten alive. You cannot be idealistic. I was very idealistic. You know, you don’t trust anybody. I trusted everybody, you know, all of that. For many years I was in a state of rejecting everything that was unique about me because that was the message I was getting from him and from others. Now he was doing it, I’m sure from a good motivation. he didn’t want to see me squashed, you know, but uh, but I think coming to that place of knowIng yourself, your true essence and then learning to love yourself and, and uh, and acknowledge those as gifts. right? And then, and then being yourself right, not denying yourself, but being yourself and then ultimately projecting that into the world. Expressing yourself. Right. Manifesting those qualities. I’m looking for a word the opposite of weaponizing. Yeah. A lot of people weaponize it. They’re brilliant. They’ve weaponized the intelligence not to hurt other people or they have a great sense of humor. They use it with the biting wit, you know, which can destroy somebody. But I’m talking about the opposite of that. Use it to serve, you know, use it to elevate, you know,
BRYAN: 01:31:35 That makes me think a little bit about, about Buckminster Fuller. Along those same lines where he talked about we’re so adept at creating weaponry right, where he was interested to create livingry,
RAJ: 01:31:50 Livingry, ah living versus weaponry that is interesting.
BRYAN: 01:31:53 Yeah. Okay. Raj, so I know we’re at about time. I have just a few rapid questions. If you’re good to. Let’s shift gears and we’ll and we’ll get a few a few things. So. Okay. So these questions, by the way, I’ve written them with the hope that you can answer them concisely, maybe even with a single word in some cases. So the first one, please complete the following sentence with something other than a box of chocolates. The question is, life is like a blank.
RAJ: 01:32:26 It’s like a jigsaw puzzle.
BRYAN: 01:32:28 I love it. It’s one. Okay. Number two, what is something at which you wish you were better?
RAJ: 01:32:35 Dancing
BRYAN: 01:32:38 Number three. If you’re required every day for the rest of your life to wear a tee shirt with a slogan on it, or a phrase or a saying or a quote or equip, what would the shirt say?
RAJ: 01:32:49 Love yourself and others.
BRYAN: 01:32:51 Number four, what book other than your own have you gifted or suggested? Most often?
RAJ: 01:32:57 Man’s Search for Meaning. This was easy. I bought 300 copies. When I first read it.
BRYAN: 01:33:04 Wow. Number five. You travel a lot. What’s one travel hack you know, something you do or maybe something you own that makes your travel less painful and or more enjoyable?
RAJ: 01:33:20 I don’t know that I’ve discovered that yet. I’d be curious to see what other people say. Yeah, I don’t. Uh, I don’t have a good one there. No, I do concentrate my flying with one airline so I can. I can get some more comfortable travel out of that, you know, and get upgrades and so forth, but…
BRYAN: 01:33:45 Any way you pack any possession, you make sure to always take any routines you observe. Anything like that
RAJ: 01:33:51 I’m always looking for the perfect suitcase. Always on, you know, I was on the lookout for what is, what’s the right suitcase.
BRYAN: 01:34:00 Okay. What’s one thing you started or stopped doing in order to live or age? Well,
RAJ: 01:34:05 I, I started exercising more regularly and also practicing having a presence practice in my life. Those two things have helped. Uh, what did I stop? I used to smoke many, many years ago. I mean, I did fortunately stop in my twenties.
BRYAN: 01:34:23 Might be why you’re still here? Yup. Um, what’s one thing you wish every american knew ?
RAJ: 01:34:31 That America is a wonderful country, but it is not infallible. That is okay. To acknowledge weaknesses and to apologize for wrongs that may have been done in America is not infallible. It’s not perfect. Still a… It’s a wonderful country, but we have some blind spots in America. Being an American means never having to say you’re sorry. Seems.
BRYAN: 01:35:03 Is there a piece of advice like one saying perhaps that your parents gave you that has stayed with you?
RAJ: 01:35:11 I would have to say it’s comes from my mother because my father’s messages were all in a direction that ultimately did not serve me, but I’ve realized that my work in the last 10, 15 years has really been honoring my mother and uh, it’s bringing that mother energy to the world and I think about things that she says. I think one of the phrases, she says it in Hindi of course, but it translates to don’t bring pain to somebody else’s heart or don’t be the cause of pain in somebody else’s heart.
BRYAN: 01:35:47 How is that set in Hindi?
RAJ: 01:35:52 (Hindi) so don’t bring pain to anybody’s heart, that kind of thing.
BRYAN: 01:36:01 Wow, that’s beautiful. Okay. Last one of these rapid kind of questions, which is, what are people surprised to learn about you?
RAJ: 01:36:14 That I like to sing? I don’t know if they’re surprised, but something, uh, but that’s something people don’t know… but I come from a very warrior like background, you know, those are my roots. People get surprised when they hear that because I don’t think I project that.
BRYAN: 01:36:33 The warrior shaman. I can see it.
RAJ: 01:36:36 Yeah. The peaceful warrior that, that whole, that whole concept. I think. Yeah, that’s, that’s true. I think. Yeah. To me it’s important to remember to acknowledge and value the masculine while celebrating the feminine because they are many beautiful mess and it being a warrior is necessary at times. Right? We cannot all… because That’s how we protect from evil.
BRYAN: 01:37:02 yeah. okay. Raj, um, as a way of expressing my gratitude to you for being so generous with your time and your knowledge and your experience. One small token of my appreciation is I’ve gone on kiva.org. I have a kiva lending team that I host and today in your honor, I made a $100 loan to a woman named Lily who’s in India in the east district and managed for. She has a weaving business and she will use this money to expand her weaving business by buying thread and materials. So I just wanted to do that and let you know.
BRYAN: 01:37:41 Thank you.
BRYAN: 01:37:43 And my pleasure. If, if people want to learn more from you or connect with you, what should they do?
RAJ: 01:37:48 My website is rajsisodia.com and there there’s a form they can fill out if they want to get in touch with me or they can find me quite easily at babson.edu, but rajsisodia.com is a good resource that has a lot of the uh, uh, videos and the descriptions of the books and some of the shorter articles, et cetera that I’ve written, including a lot of personal writing. Actually there’s a tab there called my writings or personal writings. So those are some humorous essays and some autobiographical pieces that I’ve done over the years.
BRYAN: 01:38:19 Awesome. And people can also learn more at consciouscapitalism.org?
RAJ: 01:38:25 Yes.
BRYAN: 01:38:26 And maybe find a chapter near them or participate in your annual event?
RAJ: 01:38:31 Yes. So we have 37 chapters in the US and a 17 or 18 other countries and we have two big annual conferences that we do, one for CEO’s and october. And the other one is open to anybody in April, which will be in phoenix next year.
BRYAN: 01:38:46 Phoenix in April. Sounds pretty ok.
RAJ: 01:38:50 Love to see you there too, Bryan.
BRYAN: : 01:38:50 Yes, I’m going to. I’m going to go up after this and look at my calendar and get this email about travel for you. Some of the fun things I’ll just share right now real quick for the listeners. David G always only packs carry on, no matter how long he’s gone for, no matter if it’s international. Lynne Twist always has a shrine that she sets up in her hotel room, uh, where she takes with her. And then I love what Greg Mckeown says. He has a packing checklist that he uses not only to pack himself, but that he uses before he comes home to make sure he took everything from his hotel room. I was like, that’s so smart. Yeah. Awesome. Well, thank you again for, for being a part of this and thank you to everybody who’s listening. I hope that you’ve enjoyed this. I hope that Raj’s perspectives have helped to expand your view of what business is or can be and I will look forward to connecting with you on good living.com. You can check out the show notes for some of the books that Raj mentioned, some of the organizations and also the other work that he’s up to. So until next time, take care and be well.
RAJ: 01:38:50 Thank you. Bryan.