"CEOs can't wait to read Sunny Bindra's articles every week."

May 17, 2015
Why are we helpless? Because we learned to be

Why do so many of us feel so helpless so much of the time? We think there’s no point in protesting – nothing will change. We think there’s no point in applying – the jobs are already allocated to insiders. We think there’s no point in aspiring to run our own businesses – we’ll just […]

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May 10, 2015
Service fails because people don’t care enough

Solomon Maundu asked me a question on his blog (and on Twitter) recently: “Is the reason the public service is bad at service delivery that most public servants do not take pride in their jobs?” In other words, do I think that bad service delivery and a lack of pride in work are connected? Do […]

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May 03, 2015
Xenophobia comes from small minds entertaining small thoughts

Xenophobia never died. That intense, irrational hatred or fear of “the others” is alive and kicking. It thrives, paradoxically, in South Africa, a country whose rebirth was predicated on the principle that “separateness” was wrong. It emerges, predictably, in Greece, where immigrants provide a convenient scapegoat for self-inflicted economic woes. It even threatens, bafflingly, to […]

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Feb 22, 2015
What is your experience of experience?

When we look for good people to employ, what do we look for? Typically, qualifications and experience. I’ve already discussed the problem with qualifications on this page a few weeks back. First, there is the problem that you just can’t trust the qualifications presented to you any more, certainly not in Kenya. No one I […]

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Nov 30, 2014
What a life well lived looks like

I lost a much-valued work colleague this week. Please indulge me this Sunday, for I feel her short life has much to teach the rest of us. How do we extract any meaning from this all-too-brief, seemingly meaningless existence of ours? How do we attach any nobility to life when it seems subject to what […]

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Oct 26, 2014
Employ human beings, not human resources

Here’s a thing. It was reported recently that an elderly lady fell down on an escalator at Leeds Railway Station in the UK. Staff of Northern Rail who saw her fall failed to come to her aid. Why? Because they had not been trained in “people handling.” Northern Rail later confirmed that the staff had […]

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Oct 12, 2014
The new world of work requires great personal discipline

What are we going to do in a world where people play where they used to work, and work where they used to play? For the past two weeks I have explored this phenomenon here on this page: an era in which mobile computing and connectivity allow people to carry everything they need – the […]

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Sep 14, 2014
When companies are built on being the best in a rat race, only rats will win

John Lanchester writes very useful books demystifying the world of finance, explaining its arcane intricacies to those who weren’t schooled in it. Sitting on a plane recently, I came across a piece by him in the New Yorker. It contained this gem: ““My father once told me about the first colleague he ever knew to […]

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Jul 13, 2014
Why this cheap obsession with showing off?

It seems wherever we turn in Kenya these days, we find someone discussing their net worth. On frothy television shows, in newspaper spreads, in glossy magazines: invariably someone is on about their material achievements. Said person will be posing for the camera, expensive watch carefully placed to catch the best angle. And the discussion, usually […]

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Jun 03, 2012
Appreciate the perfectionists in your midst

While watching a cookery programme on TV the other day, I came across a most interesting word. The word is “kodawari,” and it is in Japanese. The programme in question showed a master sushi maker at work. Sushi has always fascinated me: for its artistry; its painstaking attention to detail; its insistence on the finest, […]

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Feb 15, 2010
The key to success: enjoy yourself thoroughly!

“Because starting a business is a huge amount of hard work, requiring a great deal of time, you had better enjoy it. When I started Virgin from a basement flat in west London, I did not set out to build a business empire. I set out to create something I enjoyed that would pay the […]

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Feb 12, 2006
Knowledge is the key future resource

Peter Drucker, widely acknowledged as the greatest management thinker of the past century, died 3 months ago. His death went largely unremarked here in Kenya; not surprisingly, as we tend to pay little attention to management – either as a concept, or as a way of doing things. Drucker was just a few days short […]

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