Driving Change at Grass Root Level, Igniting Young Minds

February 26th, 2017

The second edition of the Ullas Confluence 2017 held on 24th and 25th February at Navalur, Chennai witnessed a team of 150 members from (Talent Quest India) TQI-Ullas from 15 districts of Tamil Nadu. There were also 250 student volunteers from other districts.

1. The members of this Ullas were from 19 colleges from the districts of Salem, Tuticorin, Tirunelveli, Tiruppur, etc.

2. Each district has 12-20 members similar to what we have in Ullas.

3. Three district groups are managed by 1 cluster Head for mentoring.

4. Each member took the responsibility of reaching out to the Ullas Summit classes for at least 3 years.

5. The Ullas social club takes an approval from their own college and then from the Headmaster of the school. They manage to travel up to 30-50 km at their own expenses.

The TQI-Ullas team was founded by the students of SRM University, 5 years ago. Few members are working full time in different companies like TCS, KPIT, Cognizant, Godrej, etc.

They spend their weekends to bring CHANGE AT GRASS ROOT level by supporting in building dreams when the child is 13 years using ‘Diary of Dreams’.

The curriculum of shaping the thinking of young minds has been divided into 20 modules and further divided into 5 classes for each class from standard 9 to 12.

The Ullas volunteers act as Facilitators and Mentors for young children of all schools.

The Summit classes help in building DESIGN THINKING SKILLS during High school.

Summit 1 (9th Grade) designed for the students of Class 9 revolves around Shaping Dreams, Role Models, Identify Positives, Memory Techniques, and Removing Fear of Grammar.

Summit 2 (10th Grade) focuses on the importance of Planning, Team Work, Learning to Organise, and Magic of Appreciation.

Summit 3 (11th Grade) is all about Influencing, Balancing Priorities, Working with Constraints, Respond vs, React, and Listening vs. Hearing.

Summit 4 (12th grade) is about Communication skills through creating a First Impression, Preparing News Report, Unleashing Imagination, Stress Management and Persuasive Articulation.

Our Observations on Impact.

1. Since the curriculum is not content specific and helps in shaping the thinking, it helps in growing the school child mind.

2. Though it is designed for school children, we observed that the teacher learns more than what he/she teaches. He becomes humongously confident and responsible. They are becoming more Employable.

3. The members shared their moving stories during the Confluence.

4. They published a book named ‘Roots of Change’ by themselves from their own ‘little’ funds.

5. They represent old Ullas adage – ‘ordinary people driving extraordinary impact’.

Overall, they are focused on the Sustainability of these social clubs.

The TQI-Ullas Team at the Second Edition of Ullas Confluence 2017

Snapshot from the ongoing confluence

The Magic of ‘Ullas’

February 25th, 2017

Ullas program now has taken another wings with Talent Quest for India (TQI) founded at SRM College and partnered with Ullas Trust to take Summit Programs to schools in rural areas and villages.

Now, TQI-Ullas has reached out to 15 districts in Tamil Nadu that involves students from more than 25 colleges as TQI leaders with purpose.

Three years back they started off with 1,000 students and now mentoring over 7,000 students.

During the Ullas Confluence at Chennai on 25th and 26th Feb, where all the volunteers (over 150) participated at the Polaris Intellect campus, I was very much impressed by their confidence and commitment for mentoring students. These volunteers (I call Leaders) came from villages as small as 150 houses and first time engineers from their villages.

I was moved by their sheer passion. A Great learning.

Kudos to the Ullas team led by Sukanya Sreenivas, Col. Vidyasagar, Anbu Rathinavel, Padmini Sharathkumar and all of Polaris and Intellect volunteers.

A volunteer in action at the Ullas Summit at Elambalur

Young minds with a positive expression

My Diary – Behaviour and Genes

February 19th, 2017

We all believe that our behavior is an outcome of our environment, and not a part of Genes.

I was observing different kinds of birds. All the birds have similar capabilities like flying, but their behaviors are different.

My Observations:
1. Migratory birds which comes to our locality have clearly defined leader. All birds follow the leader.
2. Parrots are ‘playing’ birds. They play with each other like a young kids play on the field.
3. Pigeons like to relax around human habitats. They are not afraid of human beings and live nearby.
4. Crows are independent and angry birds. They keep searching for food and as soon as someone finds it, they call other friends for company.
5. Owls behave as an individual researcher. They remain as loner in a tree crevice.

We can also observe many other birds and write about them.

My question is,

  1. Is behavior too a part of the genetic inheritance based on species?
  2. Is behavior encoded in DNA or some other place?

There is No Limit for Human Thinking

February 18th, 2017

TRAIN WITHOUT WHEELS running at 430 km hr.

Yesterday, I travelled on a MAGLEV (derived from magnetic levitation) train at Shanghai. The train runs from Shanghai City to Airport. Afterall, it took 420 Sec or just 7 minutes to reach the Airport.

If this is implemented in India, then the maximum distance from Delhi to Mumbai will be covered in just 3 hours.

My Observations:

1. Magnetic Levitation is a technology that was first experimented in 1934.
2. The first Maglev train started in the U.K. in 1984 from Birmingham Airport. But unfortunately, in 1995, it had to be closed due to commercial viability.
3. The Maglev technology is getting matured by two countries – Japan and Germany. No America this time.
4. Shanghai decided to launch the Maglev train in 2001 and finally launched it on 1st Jan 2004.
5. The project cost was close to 40 million per km and a total of 1.3 Billion dollars.
6. The train accelerates at 30 km per 10 secs and later accelerates much faster.
7. It took two-and-a-half minutes to reach 430 km/hr speed and was at halt for not more than 2 minutes and started off to the next station.
8. The whole experience was much better than an air travel. Zero Noise and that too on surface.

My Learnings:

1. There is no Limit for Human thinking – an example of movement without wheels.
2. There is no Limit for Human courage – to experiment with path-breaking technologies. I really don’t know how did they test the end-to-end technology in real world, I could barely imagine that.

At Shanghai Maglev Station

A Zero-defect Launch

February 18th, 2017

An another example of a Zero-defect perfect launch of 104 satellites in their respective orbits and location.

Few observations:

1. A confident team of scientists in the video. All are very mature working in unison as a high performance team. Very humble scientists.
2. The altitude of the location is 512 km.
3. Looking at quantity of satellites – it seems many companies can own their own satellites in future.
4. I wonder what drives ISRO leadership team in today’s world of capitalism. Just the PURPOSE or National Pride or Intrinsic hunger of perfection.

Must watch video – try to connect with emotions of the engineers and scientist sitting there.

My Observations

February 5th, 2017

Just few observations:

1. The space is as far as Puducherry from Chennai or Sonipat from Delhi i.e., just 100 km. But it’s vertical height is rather than horizontal.

2. The earth has a diameter of 12,000 km i.e., if you are digging from one end of earth, you can continue digging 12,000 km to reach the other end. Human beings, till date, after all possible innovations have explored only 12 km of that depth.

How Does Cooperation Evolve?

January 28th, 2017

‘State Clearly’ is a beautiful website which explains complex topics in simple scripts of 3-7 minutes videos built using expressive animations.

I am enclosing a 3-minute video on Cooperation – why cooperation is a necessity created by nature than competition.

Alternative Medicines – Homeopathy and Allopathy

January 18th, 2017

I was just scanning the origin of words like Empathy and then moved on to check out meaning of similar words like Homeopathy and Allopathy.

Eventually, I found out that the term Allopathy was given by the founder of Homeopathy, Samuel Hahnemann – a German Physician,  as a system of alternative medicine that works on symptoms and towards suppressing symptoms.

In 1810, Allopathy was used as derogatory word and considered as an alternative medicine.

In 2016, 200 years later, Homeopathy is an alternative medicine.

A daguerrotype of Samuel Hahnemann in 1841

Design Mind for 10x Thinking – ‘Unmukt’

January 2nd, 2017

I will be conducting a workshop on Design Thinking and Preparing the Design Mind for 10x Thinking titled ‘Unmukt’. This is a one-of-a-kind program that covers the Power of Boundaryless Thinking and how Design Thinking helps in moving from the mystery of business to heuristics and then to algorithm. It also deals with the role of emotional elements in moving from ‘just ideas’ to the implementation of ideas.

If you are interested in participating in the workshop at Pune on 14th January 2017, contact program coordinator Dr. Anbu Rathinavel on anbu.rathinavel@intellectdesign.com

My Diary – Leadership Styles

December 4th, 2016

Leadership Styles (4th December, 2016)


1. Grass – Grows horizontally on the ground occupying more space; allows people to walk on it.
2. Seasonal flowering plant – Grows beautiful flowers in a season and then destroys itself.
3. Creepers – It grows on support of others plants/species.
4. Fruit Trees – Continuously provides fruits to humans year-on-year.
5. Shade Trees – Grows tall and provides shade/shelter for all purposes.
6. Tall Trees – Grows tall and taller individually without any obstruction.

Please add your observations

Observations by Dr. Sundar:

Shrubs – Exist; do not contribute much anyway.
Cactus – Survives amidst adversity, are the only green spots in such a landscape; otherwise prickly and inaccessible. Bonsai – Has a potential to grow, but is not allowed to.
Banyan – Allows offspring to develop roots and grows in stature.
Coconut tree and the like – every part is useful, not only the fruit.
Carnivorous plants – need I say more?