Posts Tagged ‘Wall Street’

Fortune, Forbes, Business Insider report on the beneficial effects of @TMmeditation in business

May 4, 2017

There’s been a strong interest in meditation lately among stressed, high-powered Wall Street bankers, investors, and CEOs. Many extol the virtues of Transcendental Meditation, aka TM. One investor describes TM as “Low investment, High return.” Here are a few of the many articles in such leading publications as Fortune, Forbes, and Business Insider.

Fortune reports: This Banking CEO Swears by Meditation. Barry Sommers (J.P. Morgan) has been doing Transcendental Meditation twice a day for the last ten years. He says he saw major positive changes in a longtime friend and colleague. Sommers then learned about TM from Bob Roth, CEO of the David Lynch Foundation. Watch this dynamic video clip from Fortune’s second annual Brainstorm Health conference, moderated by Arianna Huffington. It’s embedded in this Fortune article: Why America’s Top Bosses Love Sleep and Meditation, part of which is excerpted here:

CEO Barry Sommers speaks on TM at Fortune's 2nd annual Brainstorm Health conference

CEO Barry Sommers praises TM at Fortune’s Brainstorm Health conference

Some corners of corporate America have long had a culture that wears its long and grueling hours like a badge of honor. Now a group of executives is trying to change that by opening up about how they each found balance in their own lives and by making wellness a priority at their companies.

“I’ve found in a culture like Wall Street, people are obsessed with how many hours people work,” said Barry Sommers, CEO of Wealth Management at J.P. Morgan Chase, during Fortune’s second annual Brainstorm Health conference in San Diego on Tuesday. “Way too many people are getting out of there as fast as they can because they’re totally burnt out.”

Sommers decided to take his health into his own hands a decade ago after someone he’d known personally and professionally for 30 years started doing Transcendental Meditation. “It transformed this person’s life,” he said. “I saw a different person.”

Sommers has now been doing Transcendental Meditation 20 minutes two times a day for a decade. And he prioritizes sleep, getting seven and half to eight hours every night. “I changed my schedule and lifestyle,” he said. “When I do a dinner, we’ll be at the restaurant at 5pm, not at 8pm.” He said his kids make fun of it, but he wakes up every morning “incredibly happy.” If there’s a problem at the office, his employees know to call the house and his wife will wake him up. But rarely is there anything so important that it can’t wait until the morning, he said.

“This goes completely against mainstream assumption that J.P. Morgan is the boiler room of burnout,” said Arianna Huffington, the founder and CEO of Thrive Global, who moderated the panel.

Forbes, France also covered this topic: Transcendental Meditation: The Secret Weapon of Leaders, which includes this embedded video of Ken Gunsberger, from the Center for Leadership Performance.

Ken Gunsberger, VP, UBS Wealth Management in New York .png

Ken Gunsberger, VP, UBS Wealth Management New York, doing his TM

Writer Catherine Nivez interviewed Wall Street investor and TM meditator Ken Gunsberger who refers to TM as “Low investment, High return.” Vice President of UBS Wealth Management in New York, Kenneth Gunsberger manages his clients’ fortunes, market competition and professional stress. Leonard Stein, TM Teacher representing DLF in Geneva, is also quoted extensively in this excellent article.

In the video, Ken expresses a concern to his NY TM instructor: “How am I gonna know when I’m “in the zone” when I’m meditating? The reply he was given: “You’re not. The goal is to not be in the zone when you’re meditating. The goal is to be in the zone when you’re done. When you’re in that meeting at work. When you’re with your kids. When you’re with your spouse. That’s when you wanna be in the zone.”

Ken adds: “And because of the TM it has enabled me to do a much better job all across the board.” Ken said TM “literally changed my life.” After meditating only two and a half months his business increased; he had the best month in twenty-five years. Even his relationship with his daughter improved. He sums up the results of his TM practice this way: “Better choices. Better allocation of energy. Better results.”

Click on the link to watch to the rest of the video. Click the title to read the article. If you don’t understand French, use Google Translate. It’s worth the effort.

Business Insider has written before about TM in Business. Recently, Richard Feloni wrote a comprehensive report: Transcendental Meditation, which Bridgewater’s Ray Dalio calls ‘the single biggest influence’ on his life, is taking over Wall Street. It was republished in many places, including SFGATE. Here is an excerpt:

Ray Dalio, Founder, Bridgewater Associates, world's largest hedge fund

Ray Dalio, Founder, Bridgewater Associates, world’s largest hedge fund

Around eight years ago, Bridgewater Associates founder Ray Dalio introduced Transcendental Meditation to his then—735 employees.

Dalio had already established a unique, intense culture at Bridgewater that he likes to say is akin to being part of an ” intellectual Navy SEALs ,” and he believed that Transcendental Meditation (TM) would work as an effective counterbalance.

“I did it because it’s the greatest gift I could give anyone—it brings about equanimity, creativity and peace,” Dalio told me via email.

Since then, TM has popped into the mainstream, and over the last three years, the David Lynch Foundation TM center has taught almost 2,500 professionals, with roughly 55% of those from Wall Street, and 1,150 of those in 2016 alone.

Read the rest of this fabulous article—Transcendental Meditation, which Bridgewater’s Ray Dalio calls ‘the single biggest influence’ on his life, is taking over Wall Street—one of the best yet, and other TM articles archived on their website.

Note: I gave Jochen Uebel permission to translate this post into German: Prominente Business-Zeitschriften berichten über Transzendentale Meditation (Prominent business magazines report on Transcendental Meditation).


Lavina Melwani interviews Chandrika Tandon on her Grammy Award nomination

November 6, 2011

FEBRUARY 11, 2011

A Corporate Trailblazer Goes for Grammy Gold


Also see: Chandrika Tandon and ‘Soul Call’ at the Grammy Awards (includes music video clip)

[GRAMMY1]Philip Montgomery for The Wall Street Journal

Grammy-nominated musician Chandrika Tandon plays a Tambura, a traditional Indian stringed instrument, in her home on the Upper East Side.

She is the quintessential underdog, the unknown. Chandrika Krishnamurthy Tandon, a financial advisor and a trustee of New York University, is also a nominee for the Grammy Award in the Best Contemporary World Music Album category, and she’s up against veterans and superstars of the music world—Bela Fleck, Bebel Gilberto, Angelique Kidjo and Sergio Mendes.

Ms. Tandon’s résumé doesn’t exactly read like that of a music diva: A graduate of the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad, she was a partner at the corporate consulting firm McKinsey and Company before founding Tandon Capital Associates in 1992. Apart from her work at NYU, she is a board member of the American India Foundation (AIF) and the founder of Tandon Foundation. There’s not a musical note in there—she’s better known on Wall Street than in Woodstock.

Indeed, Ms. Tandon, a 56-year-old Upper East Side resident, earned her Grammy nomination without a major record label or any star power behind her. Yet “Soul Call,” her second self-produced album on her own Soul Chants label, has become a sleeper hit, garnering more than 36,000 followers on Facebook. One, an expecting mother, wrote that her unborn baby kicks and dances when she listens to it; another wrote: “This music is like digging a tunnel deep into my soul.”

The Journal spoke with Ms. Tandon about mixing business with music and the prospect of taking home Grammy gold on Feb. 13 in Los Angeles.What was your reaction when you heard of the Grammy nomination?

Utter shock and wonder. I have such gratitude that the community of music industry folks has taken the time to listen to an unknown. What it’s done is made the music accessible to so many more people than would have heard it otherwise.

Was music a big part of your growing up years in India?

We lived in a joint family where everyone loved to sing, and music would always be playing on the radio. When we had power cuts, my sister, brother and I would sing in the dark—we didn’t care how long the power cuts lasted! (Ms. Tandon’s sister is PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi.) We were a simple family where education was so important. Music was my soul but I chose to pursue a career in business.

Tell us about the journey from business success to composing ‘Soul Call’?

Ten years ago I realized that the happiest moments of my life were tied to music and decided to make it center-stage in my life. I searched far and wide to find great masters to give me a rigorous grounding in classical Hindustani music and devoted hours of study despite my tough work schedule. This whole journey has been about going deep into myself, of viewing the world through a kaleidoscope rather than a single lens. We have one short life, are given certain resources and have an obligation to use them. It’s all about giving back, and sharing. That’s why all proceeds of “Soul Call” go to community-building causes.

How have your worlds of business and music intersected?

Music keeps me centered at my deepest level and has made me a more expansive person. I am learning every day that it is easy to radiate grace if you can find it within. This journey has also helped me redefine my concept of perfection—many birds in the forest can sing sweetly even if they are not all nightingales…. we have to honor them all and it does not compromise excellence. After listening to ‘Soul Call’, some of my most reserved business acquaintances are much more forthcoming about their passions and their spirituality, and I hope some have been inspired to actively follow their dreams, even as a second innings.

How much has music affected your life as a New Yorker?

I am a New Yorker inside and out, having lived here for 31 years. I get to listen to all the great Western and Indian musicians more easily here—and sometimes go to the same concert many times! I just love the city, and am very involved in great institutions here, like NYU, where I get to work with some of the greatest minds ever. One of my great passions is a community choir which I founded and conduct for the seniors in the Queens Hindu temple. We perform ancient Sanskrit chants set to rocking western harmonies, using Indian classical and western vocal training techniques for people who have never sung before. Each session is a shared celebration.

With the Grammy ceremony just days away, what are your thoughts on winning—or not winning?

That’s not the way I think of my life; I don’t think of winning or losing. I think of the Grammys as a happening at a point in time. I’m not trying to use this as a stepping stone to something else. I live by the words of the mystic Kabir:

When ‘I’ was there, the Divine was missing.
When ‘I’ left, the Divine took over.

So the quest is to lose myself and go with the flow.

Copyright ©2011 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Also see: Chandrika Tandon Concert to Benefit 1000 Maharishi Vedic Pandits Launches Global Peace Initiative, Global Peace Initiative: 13 Questions and Answers with Ramani Ayer, and Chandrika Tandon Benefit Concert in Iowa Helps Launch Global Peace Initiative.

Huffington Post: Mike Ragogna: Obstacle Illusions: A Conversation with Author Stephen J. Hopson

March 17, 2011

Obstacle Illusions: A Conversation with Author Stephen J. Hopson

Mike Ragogna

Mike Ragogna
Radio Personality on Solar Powered KRUU-FM, Music Biz Vet

Posted: March 17, 2011 12:50 PM

Recently, I had the pleasure of speaking with Stephen J. Hopson, transformational speaker and author. The cover and title of his book, Obstacle Illusions: Transforming Adversity Into Success, caught my eye. Born profoundly deaf, and a risk-taker, he’s managed to accomplish a lot in his life so far. How did he do it?

A Conversation with Author Stephen J. Hopson

Mike Ragogna: Stephen, how did you come to write this book, Obstacle Illusions: Transforming Adversity Into Success, and what do you mean by obstacles being illusions?

Stephen J. Hopson: Well, Mike, this book has been in the making for the last 10 plus years. I began writing soon after quitting my lucrative 6-figure career on Wall Street. Eventually my writings morphed into a bunch of stories, a few of which were submitted and subsequently accepted for publication in books like Chicken Soup for the College Soul. That boosted my confidence and eventually I ended up with a manuscript for a book.

Based on my experience, obstacles are illusions. They are all in the mind. Yes, we certainly have challenges but how you perceive them will determine the way you deal with them. For instance, are they truly obstacles/problems, etc.? Or are they opportunities in disguise? I choose to see them as opportunities in disguise and learning experiences.

MR: You were born profoundly deaf. How did you learn to speak so well?

SJH: For about 20 years I’ve had speech therapy one-on-one with a speech therapist in school and during the earlier years in elementary school, with my mother. I was told by one of my reviewers that one of the most fascinating stories in the book was about how I learned how to speak and lip-read. I enjoyed spending time with my mom in the afternoons after school, looking through picture booklets and learning how to pronounce words. I’d spend one hour with the school speech therapist and then another hour or two with my mom after school.

MR: Early in the book you talk about how difficult it was being deaf and that you had a hard time dealing with it. Who or what helped you overcome this challenge?

SJH: One of the most powerful defining moments was when my fifth grade teacher said three simple inconsequential words that forever rocked my little world when I bravely raised my hand to answer a question she asked the class one day. That’s when I realized I was smart after all and that I’d one day make a place for myself in this world. I still remember the incident as if it happened yesterday.

Despite that stupendous moment in her class, I still struggled with self-esteem and doubt. Eventually I “woke up” and realized that I was here for a very special purpose and that being deaf was not an accident. That’s when I had another life-changing moment and everything began to make sense thereafter. How it happened is described in the book when I took a break from the hectic hustle and bustle of Wall Street and went south to Florida for a week. I had a spiritual revelation one morning on the beach. To put it simply, I realized the universe had spoken to me and told me in no uncertain terms that my destiny was not to be a stockbroker (more like a pit stop) but to be a transformational speaker and author. That’s when I really “woke up.”

Read the rest of this fascinating interview here in The Huffington Post.

Today, March 17, 2011, was the National Book Launch. It turned out to be a lucky day for Stephen, being St. Partick’s Day. Obstacle Illusions peaked at #355, out of 8 million titles, on Amazon’s Bestselling Ranking, #4 in Books on Happiness, and #13 in Books on Success! So we can now say Stephen Hopson is a best-selling author!

Here are some links:
Stephen’s Facebook page:
Obstacle Illusions landing page:
Video promo:
Stephen’s website:
See related posts on Stephen Hopson here.

I had contacted Stephen and offered to proofread his book. It was a very inspirational read. We soon met, and, like so many other people, I offered to help. When you work with Stephen you soon discover that all things are really possible with him; there are no obstacles, and if there are, they do turn out to be illusions. Collaborating with Stephen continues to be a blast. I hope he fulfills his dream to become a #1 bestselling author. If anyone deserves it, he does. And thanks to Mike Ragogna for this great interview! Buy the book for yourself. Buy it as a gift for a friend. Buy it today, if you can. Thanks.

And thanks to Jay Mattsson of Hedquist Productions for this reminder: Stephen has been featured in a cover story for Careers and the Disabled, and interviewed on CNN, Detroit Fox 2 News and Buffalo News 4, to name a few. He has been profiled in numerous newspapers including The New York Times, The Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, Macomb Daily and has appeared on the national LEEZA talk show (Paramount), several cable television programs and countless radio shows including The Mitch Albom Show (author of best-selling “Tuesdays with Morrie”).

Teaching Wall Street to transcend woes and meditate

October 28, 2009


New York City news, culture and more from amNewYork


Teaching Wall Street to transcend woes and meditate

1:12 PM By Danielle Sonnenberg

Is Wall Street ready to embrace spirituality?

Its new neighbor thinks so. The Center for Leadership Performance moved into the historic American Bank Note Building, one block from the New York Stock Exchange, to teach the Masters of the Universe the power of transcendental meditation techniques.

“People working under enormous stress don’t want to self-medicate through drugs and alcohol,” said Robert Roth, executive director of the center.

About 100 people attended two seminars there on Friday — a sort of meet-the-neighbors open house.

The center promotes the benefits of meditating for 20 minutes, twice a day, including increased creativity, lessened stress, enhanced ability to focus and reduced blood pressure.

The meditation is also said to help a person achieve their professional potential.

“It’s not just a relaxation technique,” said Roth.

Ray Dalio, who heads Bridgewater Associates, is among the financial firm bigwigs who have embraced transcendental meditation. He spoke about how it increased his employees’ clear thinking.

He believes in it so much he pays half of the costs for his employees, and then pays the other half if they stick with it longer than six months. Training costs begin at $750.

“The proof is in the pudding,” Dalio said of the performance-enhancing techniques.
Attendees at the seminar seemed ready for a spiritual awakening.

“I really want to learn meditation, but I don’t know how,” said Desiré Carroll, a manager at Deloitte who plans to take lessons.

Cory Miller, a trader, came to the seminar after a client recommended it as a stress reliever.

“Everyone doing it, they have a glow and they seem happy,” said Miller, 22.

Copyright © 2009 amNewYork. All rights reserved.

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