Integrity is the Super Value


A lot of years ago (around 2008-09) when I was at the Shri Ram Schools in Delhi, the leadership team invested a considerable amount of time thrashing out a set of core values. To us, it was vitally important that these should not just be some nice words, some posters and displays on walls, but should really be a set of values that could be lived and imbibed every day in the minutiae of school life.

I’m proud that, as a team, we cam up with a very good set of values. Over the following months it became very clear that they worked. They found strong resonance with students, teachers and staff and the parent community. There was wonderful energy in the processes of debating these core values – what they meant to us, what they DIDN’T mean to us and especially with children they became an important part of conversations, especially when things happened that gave ‘learnable moments.’

As the months wore on I had only one real regret. That was that we had listed these values as essentially equal, unweighted and with no hierarchy. It became increasingly important in my mind that one of them should have been deemed to be like the umbrella value, above all the others – the super value of all values.

That value was integrity.

So, I was delighted to come across this article recently about how Warren Buffett treats this as a completely non-negotiable when recruiting people for senior roles:

Inc – Warren Buffett Says He won’t Even Consider Hiring Someone Who Lacks This One Trait

It’s a relatively short article, but has some very useful thoughts on recruitment. I loved the way he highlights that if a candidate has the other two attributes he looks for (intelligence and initiative/ energy) but not integrity this is way more dangerous than if they lack all three.


Recognition for TSRS – Aspen Summer Leadership Programme

I am really pleased to announce that agreement has been reached for certificate accreditation of the TSRS Aspen leadership Programme by Babson College, USA.

Babson is one of the foremost management education institutes in the US, frequently ranked number one for entrepreneurship: Babson College

For anyone who has been wavering about deciding whether to attend, there is still time and some places remain to be a part of this very unique and powerful learning experience.

The Shri Ram Aspen Summer Leadership Programme

Just before I left for 15 days break in England, I posted the photo from the press launch of the new TSRS – Aspen Summer leadership Programme. Here are more details about the programme. This is really exciting and we’re already seeing a big buzz of interest. It is open to any students, not just those of TSRS. In fact, the greater the mix and diversity the greater will be the learning for the students.

The Shri Ram School has launched a summer school leadership Programme in collaboration with Aspen Institute for the students of grade 9-12. Since it is the first and only kind of Leadership programme in India, we have kept limited number of seats with a maximum capacity of 50. Details of the programme can be seen through weblink

The Programme aims to lift a student from the level of Success to Significance

The Programme Summary:
The programme will be a 2 weeks residential programme in the camp site of Rishikesh, next to the river Ganges. The programme is a blend of Socratic dialogue, experiential learning motivational lectures and adventure sports.
• Text based Socratic dialogue: Students will be made to read, reflect and conduct discussions on a series of thought provoking readings around the issues of Leadership like: (i) The Challenge of Leadership; (ii) The Promise of Leadership; (iii) The Good Society; (iv) The Possibility of Heroism; and (v) The Meaning of Life.
• Sports, Adventure and Wilderness: Dedicated 3-4 days for adventure sports like rafting and trekking, leadership & team building games and wilderness walks.
• Academic study of Leadership: Along with the readings the programme also provides an academic perspective and understanding of Leadership.
• Communication Skills and Performing Arts: Written and verbal communication skills training will include activities such as Public Speaking which will give students an experience of combining quality and quantity of expression in a structured format in front of an audience. The students will also prepare a play on value-based leadership to “experience’ the leadership predicament.
• Experiential Soft Skills Training: To enhance skills such as positive attitude and self-confidence, motivating self and others, resolving conflict and dealing with stress, becoming more Emotionally Intelligent, etc.
• Community Visits: Community visits organized to a government school in a village and an Orphanage, to sensitize the students to various social issues, and expose them to an environment where there is a scarcity of basic requirements, inequities and hardships in life.
• Personalized Counseling and Tests: Personalized Counseling sessions for the students; in which the counselor will discuss the students’ experiences, problems, progress, ongoing understanding and tests based analysis.
• Guest Lectures: There will be a series of motivational and educational lectures from people of different backgrounds.
As part of the leadership program, students will be required to commit to a project which could be in the form of a school, college or community level project in the area of their passion. The project must impact the target audience and improve the status quo. It should involve the students to commit some of their time, individually or in a group, directly to the project. The project must help the student transition

The care and safety, first aid and special meal requirements will be taken complete care of. There will be one faculty for every 5 children.

The Opening & Closing ceremony of the Leadership programme will be held at The Shri Ram School,

Criteria for Admission
 The student should be a moderate to high performer in academics and extra-curricular activities
 An overall performer, team player and ready to take on challenges.

TSRS Poster (for web)
TSRS Form (for web)

Wonderful ICSE & ISC Results

The TSRS students of Classes X and XII have really exceeded themselves this year, and made us very proud indeed. The board results were really excellent, both in terms of the exceptional achievements of the individual toppers, but also the averages reflecting a great overall performance from our student body.

Whilst hailing their achievement and giving them 99% of the credit, I think it’s only fair if I hold back the other 1% for the teachers and parents who guided, mentored, taught and encouraged to provide the climate and environment within which these children could perform to such high levels.

So, now the school team has proved that it’s earned a summer break. We’ll pause a while and then get our thinking caps on for how we can raise the bar still further.

For now, all applause and recognition to the Shri Ramites, the mighty mighty Ramites …………

Aravali Results 2011

Moulsari ICSE & ISC Results 2010-11

Karamveer Chakra Winners

In our opinion, every Shri Ramite is a winner – but then we might be accused of being a bit biased.

However, here are some pictures of some true winners from the TSRS family. This week the i-Congo organisation held its annual awards function, recognising change makers in the society. This year saw a double celebration for the school. Firstly, Mrs Bharat Ram was recognised for her contributions to education.

Then, a group of our environmentally aware students were recognised with the Karamveer Chakra award for their selfless dedication to spreading environmental awareness and especially for their involvement in the Tiger Task Force and the projects to help the Ranthambore tribals to move away from poaching.

We’re really proud of these model citizen students who are making such a difference under the inspirational guidance of their teacher, Ms Madhu Bhatnagar.

Design for Giving

The judging for the Design for Giving Contest is over and the results have been announced.

Congratulations to all the children in schools that made the list of the best 100 projects. TSRS had four projects recognised and this reflects some great work, creativity and effort by all the students and teachers involved.


Perhaps more important than the accolades, ‘winning’, prizes etc. the real winners from this competition have been the thousands of children who got to experience what it is to be the change you want to see.

Subroto Cup – Last Group Match

News through this evening that the boys went out with a flourish, beating Gujarat by 2 – 0.

So at the end of the group stage they managed 4 losses and 3 wins. My estimate is this probably places them in 5th place in the group, thereby missing out on one of the four places to go through to the next round. However, for a first appearance at this level of competition they have done themselves proud.

This is a young side with a number of students from Class 9 who will get stronger by next year. I’m sure they will have gained from the experience of competing at this level.

Well done as well to coach, Keshav.


Subroto Cup – Update, Tuesday 13th October

At last, on Sunday afternoon my schedule enabled me to get along to a match. The TSRS boys knew it was going to be a challenging game as they were up against Uttarakhand who have had a good tournament so far and are clearly a very good team.

There was some confusion over the kick off time, meaning the boys had a long wait before the game. Maybe this unsettled them as the start saw them playing rather hesitantly, holding back from their tackles and allowing the opponents the luxury of space down the wings.

The result was few chances on goal of our own and two goals conceded. The effort put in to the 5-1 victory the day before seemed to be showing on some of the team with some tired legs in evidence.

With some fresh players injected the second half saw a very different game. The boys tackled their hearts out, wrestled control of the midfield and had the majority of possession. Sadly, though coming close a few times, they weren’t able to convert this better performance in to goals. So, result 2-0 against a very good team who pretty much live for their soccer.

This afternoon the boys should benefit from a rest day yesterday as they take on the Sainik School. Kick off at 4.15pm at Mount St Mary School, Delhi Cant.

If you have the chance, please go along to support the boys.

Subroto Cup:

6th October 2009:
Today the Phase III boys had a tough first match as they represented Haryana for the first time in the national stage of the competition, going down 3 – 0 to AFBBS. This is a really high level of competition with the best school teams from across the country, plus overseas.

I don’t have any more information yet. Tomorrow afternoon they take on SAI, so need to regroup quickly and put today’s first result behind them. At this stage there are 8 teams in their group, the first 4 to go through to the next round. So, it’s a setback, but not terminal.

Come on boys – the whole school is right behind you.



7th October
Competing at this top flight level is proving challenging for the team – something of a baptism of fire.

Today they took on Sports Association of India team and went down 5 – 0. However, considering SAI won last year’s competition there’s no disgrace in that.

Amongst the positives, I’m getting reports that Captain, Arjun Dutt has led his team be example and really worked hard to keep the spirits up and the team focused. It’s relatively far easier to be a leader when things are going well, but the true measure is when the going gets tough.

By sheer coincidence I came across a quote from the person who has undoubtedly been the best woman soccer player the world has ever seen;

“Failure happens all the time. It happens every day in practice. What makes you better is how you react to it.”
Mia Hamm



8th October:
A rest day and a chance to strategise. Tomorrow, 9th october is going to be a big challenge when the team play Mizoram who so far have two wins under their belts, both 1 – 0 (against AFBBS and SAI). Good luck boys and do your very best.

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