Episode 20- How to add value to each other?
In this episode, Ravi & Rajesh talk with Dr. Kaipa on the topic ‘How to add value to each other?’. Learn how Conversations can be about Value Creation & Crafting Conversations. They talk about how their conversations have generated valuable insights.
Ravi: Hi there, welcome to Spontaneous Conversations. This is Ravi Gundlapalli, episode Number 20. I’m founder, CEO of MentorCloud.
Rajesh: This is Rajesh Setty, I’m a co-conspirators with Ravi on this series and I am a serial entrepreneur and an author and a speaker and today we have Dr. Prasad Kaipa. We have known for a long time, he is one of the wisest people that we both know. It’s an honor to have him here. So why don’t you introduce yourself?
Kaipa: Sure. Thank you for introducing me to the wisest person because my daughter and my son, call me the dumbest person who has written from smart to wise because I wanted to get from dumb to smart and then smart to wise. So it is fun to be called wisest on one side and, you know, being the dumbest. At least I range from one end to the other end.
Ravi: You cover the full spectrum.
Kaipa: I cover the full spectrum.
Rajesh: Very good. So today’s topic we picked like two minutes ago how to add value to each other. So what are some opening remarks.
Kaipa: My feeling is that many times when we have spontaneous conversations we drift into topics that are of mutual interest but they don’t add any significance to either any one of us. Whether we talk about politics or whether we talk about movies or we talk about the latest technology. Sometimes, how much of value addition that will have, for example, when we talked about just a minute ago saying, you know, I spent some time in [inaudible 00:01:41] center. So immediately if you are going to [inaudible 00:01:45], then how can we do it in such a way. For me when I spent some time I got so interested. I’m really looking at how to help them to grow, how to take them to the next level and how to even invest in it because I found something very, very meaningful.
Very rarely we have conversations where, how can I add value to whatever is on your plate so that by the time we spend 10, 15 minutes there is something that I can do that I could not because of this conversation. And while I’m doing it I’m also able to add something meaningful to you something that you didn’t know, so that you can take away and get some value out of it. So the other way of saying it is when we contribute to each other, the conversation not only becomes fun but also becomes meaningful and that doesn’t take away time, it actually adds energy and value.
Ravi: That’s an amazing insight, because a lot of conversations end up focused on interests. So each person is sharing their intellectual the capacity or sharing the knowledge but what Dr. Kaipa is saying is move it to value creation. Make sure that the conversation leads to the other person actually moving to the next level. I think that’s really– so having conversation and just sharing with each other how much we know is not good enough is what I’m gathering.
Rajesh: Makes a lot of sense. In terms of crafting a conversation let’s say you– because you have so many conversations with so many leaders, but this in the backdrop, how do you craft it? Suppose, sometimes they may want to drift into movies or because they don’t know it should not look like a consulting engagement right there. So how will you handle that part?
Kaipa: What I found is if I can like through the conversation we’re having now you talked about the spontaneous conversations Episode Number 20. If you can tell me a little bit about what is this project? What are you doing with it? I would love to learn about it, and if there is any two cents that I can add I would be happy to do that. So, please tell me a little bit about these Spontaneous Conversations.
Rajesh: Actually, the person to be blamed is Ravi only. Every time we used to talk we always ended up talking something deep and meaningful and then one day he said, “Hey Rajesh, we should record this conversation because we are discussing something meaningful.” Even when I’m in the car. He’s in the car, but we are going deep into spirituality, leadership and everything and I was the non-believer in this equation. I said, “No, no, what will happen if it is a spontaneous conversation. It’s a brand. How will we help it? But he insisted and then we figured out that because we have, I’m already 44. So there is enough experience and a bank of knowledge and he is probably around the same age. We found that as we started–
Ravi: It’s 38.
Kaipa: Yeah, exactly. I just passed 38. You’re right.
Rajesh: I think we limited that because what we found was some amazing insights started coming out, just because we had focused conversations and then we said that if we meet somebody smarter than us we will also engage them in the conversation. At the end of it there were two things that would come out of it. One is that people who are listening they know that this is not a prepared conversation, but something good came out of it. It’s a lesson for them to say, “You know, we can also have such conversations that will lift our level.” Second, this is our opportunity to bring people like you and then expose your thinking ideas, strategies, tips, techniques, wisdom everything and amplify it because we will find a way to spread this around because we’re both from a marketing background. So our goal is take wisdom, whatever comes out of it and amplify it and extend it to as many people as possible.
Ravi: To add to that. What I found was, I had read many books I’ve heard many people so many quotes stuck in my head but they were not seeing the light of day. Somehow only with some people they are actually coming alive. So, I found with Rajesh we’re talking, you know, I remember I was talking to… just wrote a column once and some amazing quote comes out, but it was not coming on every other occasion. So I said, “This knowledge is stuck in my head and is coming alive in certain conversations and I don’t want that all that bites to go into thin air that nobody knows about it because I may not go home and actually blog about it. I may not write a book about it. Now I have lost all that knowledge that just went into thin air.” So that was the importance of let’s record it at least because I at least want to know that I had it in my head and I told it to you when we were talking.
Rajesh: Yeah, plus I had so many conversations with you. It is guaranteed that before and after the conversation something I will learn, something profound that I have found with you. So basically, this was a person say why not other people also benefit from it.
Ravi: Thank you.
Kaipa: There are three things for me. I heard, which is kind of interesting from your conversation. One is there is power in spontaneity. When I prepare for a conversation or when you prepare your questions to ask somebody, then that is coming from the past. When we have a conversation what I’m hearing that has depth, that has passion, that has engagement of all the people who are involved in it, what comes out becomes something of a surprise to all of us. So the spontaneity taps into the present moment, whereas prepared conversation seems to tap into the past. Okay. That is one thing. Right?
Second thing which I am also finding is any conversation, by definition, as we are saying it cannot be a lecture by one person, it has to build on each other. That means if what you say, if it does not resonate in the heart, it may resonate in the head. If it resonate in the head I make use two, three PowerPoint kind of stuff, but that doesn’t connect emotionally. That means the conversation does not build. We either listen or we talk, but we rarely converse. If in a spontaneous conversation because there is no agenda. There are no set questions what I’m seeing is somehow we engage with the heart lot more than the head. When we are having a conversation from the heart there is vulnerability, there is authenticity, there is willingness to share things which I would not share if I’m interested in what kind of an impact I want to create. All of these vulnerability, contribution, authenticity are all expressions of being here and that means being present.
So the last thing which I heard from you is, you know we talked and at the end of it, we found that this is something worth regarding that means both of you were engaged with each other so that the time and space actually became secondary. That means there is an emergence in the conversation. So you said something that triggered in Ravi, Ravi said something that triggered in Rajesh that triggered something else. So both of you are engaged in one conversation with the two mouths and two hearts and two experiences. That is the power of this spontaneous conversation that I’m finding so that means the future depends on what emerges in conversations, whether we talk about good meetings, whether we talk about good conversations, our conversations are where we are included, where we got something of value and where we feel good about it at the end of it, and where we feel we contributed and we got contributed to.
So you have something very, very rich in what you are doing in terms of spontaneous conversations because at some level, only those are the conversations that are actually going to make a difference of a transformational level. Rest of them can be incremental conversations. What you are setting up seems to be the recipe for transformational conversations. That’s what I saw. I thought there is a beautiful way in which you started and I’m really excited about what you are doing.
Ravi: Fantastic and I like the way you define the spontaneity aspect of it. Recently, here there was something called as you know spontaneous creativity. So, he said that if somebody’s given like three hours to come up with new ideas they take the forever, but he actually gave us only two minutes and he said, “Time starts now.” And he told us exactly what to innovate upon. Like, “I need 50 ideas to increase the brand presence of your company.” Two minutes and we got 40 ideas each. So something about spontaneity that kind of compresses time and increases the brain activity so much that every person was like, “Wow, how did– how come I did this when I couldn’t do the same thing at three hour window?”
Rajesh: Yeah, I also saw this for the first time I realized why this way we working because until now I believed in Ravi and said we should do this and the first couple of them I was reluctant but I started totally enjoying it because something good was happening. You brought it down to the three fundamental. Spontaneity, being present all those things. It all makes sense. But this was not what we knew, it’s like you gave the explanation of why this is working.
Kaipa: I think this is– what you are saying what both of you makes a lot of sense. Number one, it looks to be about enjoyment yet conversation when we enjoy that also becomes creative. Creative conversation is something that we enjoy. So both creativity and enjoyment, the head and the heart have to be together. As a matter of fact, when you take because we were talking about even the matrix and monitors and brain based there is an organization called Heart Math Institute in Boulder Creek. They focus on the heart related stuff, they look at the resonance of the heart and they talk about you. And actually, there’s the medical term called coherence, which means when the brain and the heart when they synchronize that is called high coherence. The heart rate variability monitors are there that will do a lot from the heart perspective.
The Phil Dixon, who is the president of the [ABL 00:13:31] and he with his colleague, [Avian 00:13:38] they had been looking at the heart coherence, I mean head coherence, spring coherence. They’d talk about how many breaths you take and something like that. So in some respects in your spontaneous conversations when you mentioned creativity and enjoyment I think that seems to be the recipe for any kind of meaningful emergence, only thing I will add to that is intentionality. If we choose to continue to have this and say, “I enjoy spending time with Rajesh. I enjoy spending time with Ravi,” like for example. Even now I can think of despite however many number of years, which we have worked with, I remember the first time you came to my office and where you brought the books and where you talked about, I think what you left to it was there was a sense of friendship.
There is a sense of respect and there is a sense of creativity. That’s what you brought. And with you it was always you know whenever we read anything whether it was mentoring you or whether it was working with coaching any other things you always brought surprise and a contribution like you know my 50th birthday you had, I didn’t even know and you had somebody you know like [inaudible 00:14:59] come in and do [inaudible 00:15:02]. I mean it was like a very, very pleasant surprise now everybody talks about experiential gifts instead of a product gift and the experience you created 10 years ago for my birthday is something that I still remember very well.
Ravi: Thank you.
Kaipa: So the key is somehow in a spontaneous conversation what we are creating is an experience, a shared experience. And a shared experience in which the creativity enjoyment and contribution is strictly moving through each of us by giving we are receiving and I think that is the source of emergence for me and you guys are exemplifying it as just we talk.
Rajesh: Very, very interesting. This is going to the foundational level. So one of the things I had a question set was, we’re coming to the close of it. One of the things I had a question was, because we work with all the [inaudible 00:16:08] and always having conversations. There are many people who don’t get that a person because for you, you have been doing this for years and years that at the end people who are listening to this and everything they get to meet with some of the leaders and they’re always a little bit intimidated and then they may not have the right conversation which will not get to the right result and then they will say, “I’m not ready for it.” What is some advice that you can give to these young people?
Kaipa: One of the things is focus on what it is that adds value to the other person. It doesn’t matter how big they are. It doesn’t matter how wise they are. If you ask a question, you know. Where are you Going? What is of interest to you? How can I add value to you? By focusing first on contribution to others as the first step, then they will always or ask them, you know, how did you get to this field? What interested you to stay in this field for so long? That means people always like to talk about themselves. Number two, they will always have new insights if you can ask interesting questions. So as a young person, you may not have many answers, but if you have some good questions that will either help the person to connect with people like you. Whether you are a millennial generation or a Gen X, Gen Y, ask questions so that whatever other person is saying that will help you while helping him.
Those are some things that would be good. And the last point I would also say is genuine interest and sharing what you have learned from them and finally and most importantly, what are you going to do if any based on what you have learned, you know, and what are you going to do differently if there is a variation from what it is. If you can acknowledge to the other person. This is what I learned and this is what I’m going to try it out and based on what I have heard from you and by the way, would you be interested in hearing what will happen out of this and can I call you? That’s a sure way to open a door to create either a mentoring relationship or a coaching relationship or a friendship with a new person they may be really happy to contribute because that’s what opens the door. Contribution is what allows people to come alive and feel good about it.
Rajesh: This is exactly what I was expecting. So my quick take away was that earlier I didn’t know why the spontaneous conversations was working the whole design of it. I was enjoying it. Now I also know why it might be working and thank you so much for that gift.
Ravi: And again, thank you Dr. Kaipa. I think I enjoyed the spontaneity part of it because there’s no preparation required and I’m enjoying how much I actually have, you know, learned over the, over several years that I get to share. I also encourage all the listeners to have such conversations and be heavily focused because conversation takes time and your time is very limited. We only got so much in everyone’s life. So make sure every conversation actually moves the needle is what I’m actually you know taking away from his comments.
Kaipa: Yeah, that’s the intention. If you have that intention that every conversation I have moves the needle that intention alone can make it focused, can make it value add and can contribute to both people.
Rajesh: Amazing. So where can people find about you? What is the website?
Kaipa: I mean prasadkaipa.com will be a good way to do it. On Facebook Prasad Kaipa. I post a lot of stuff which others I have another place where they can contact.
Ravi: Excellent. Dr. Kaipa, thank you so much. This is Ravi Gundlapalli, thank you for listening can learn more about me at mentorcloud.com.
Rajesh: This is Rajesh Setty signing off and more about me at rajeshsetty.com.
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