Tuesday, 1 December 2015

“Is Changing the Mindsets of People more Challenging than Sharing Knowledge?” ―Professor M.S.Rao

“My greatest challenge has been to change the mindset of people. Mindsets play strange tricks on us. We see things the way our minds have instructed our eyes to see.” ― Muhammad Yunus

In November 2015, I met Manoj who is one of my die-hard followers for more than a decade.  He lives with his wife and daughter in a small town. When I met him at his home, he was very much excited. He told me about the people and challenges he encountered in the college and the problems he encountered with his relatives in his native place. I listened to him patiently for some time and counseled him not to focus too much on individuals and issues. I advised him to focus on ideas to grow quickly in life. I shared with him not to dwell too much on past which cannot be changed but to focus on future.  Although he did not appreciate my suggestions initially he realized that there was substance in my suggestions.  

I told him to bring a notepad to jot down my ideas and insights.  He eagerly brought it and sat beside me with curiosity. I asked him couple of questions such as what he wants to achieve in 5 years, 10 years, 20 years, and in his lifetime. He never expected me that I would ask him such thought provoking questions. He started sharing his ambitions and goals. I trifurcated them into personal, professional and social categories.  I probed him further to find out what he wants; what he wants to achieve in life; and what he would like to be remembered for. He started thinking deeply and finally came out with several responses. By then he developed clarity about his goals, and how he wants to lead the rest of his life.

Subsequently I advised him to invest a fixed amount of time for accomplishing those goals and work in those directions despite deviations and challenges that are likely to come up on his way. He was excited with my counseling and coaching because he never had clarity about his goals until then and didn’t ink his goals. Finally, I asked him what he thinks about me. He said that I help people to dream and achieve big.  I share my knowledge with people and enlighten them to lead life effectively. I guide and groom next generation of leaders. He added that I have the ability to inspire and change the mindset of the people.

Remember, anybody can share their knowledge with others but what is challenging is to change the mindset of the people. And it requires passion and purpose to make a difference in the lives of people. Here are some tools and techniques to change mindset.

Tools and Techniques to Change Mindset

Use affirmative worlds. Speak in simple sentences with action verbs. Share your ideas and insights with anecdotes and inspiring stories of successful people. Build confidence in others. Help them set SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound) goals. Encourage them to accomplish them. Contribute your best to inspire them. Don’t expect anything in return.  Enlighten them about the advantage of changing their mindset. It helps them come out of their comfort zone to achieve the desired outcome.   

It is the tendency of the people to resist change. They don’t accept new things as they cause discomfort to them. Hence, share couple of inspiring examples of successful leaders who reinvented and achieved greatness by changing their mindsets. In this way, you can change people’s mindset and behavior.


Educators must not only share their knowledge but also change the mindset of their students to impact and inspire students. All that requires is extra passion to make a difference in the lives of students. To conclude, changing the mindset of people is not challenging when people are passionate about sharing their ideas and insights, and at the same time others are willing to be transformed to achieve excellence and desired outcome.

“Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people.” ― Eleanor Roosevelt

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Life is great!

Professor M.S.Rao, India
Founder of MSR Leadership Consultants India
Listed in Marquis Who's Who in the World in 2013
Vision 2030 Webinar: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nBCO-gWmTRk
Twitter: @professormsrao  
21 Success Sutras for Leaders: Top 10 Leadership Books of the Year (San Diego University) Amazon URL: http://www.amazon.com/21-Success-Sutras-Leaders-ebook/dp/B00AK98ELI

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  1. You did good thing. You are born for students.

  2. Great post!
    You are an international youth legend born to inspire the global youth.