A single search of the word “leadership” generates millions of hits, referring to its definition and practice ranging from historical practices to scientific research on leadership. Yet this is a field that is not fully understood and there is not a single leadership trait that works for all situations. I do not claim to have read the millions of internet articles or the millions of books from public libraries about the art and science of leadership, but I do have a keen interest in understanding what drives people to follow someone and join others who follow the same leader to accomplish a common agenda or a goal. I am an occasional reader of Harvard Business Review articles on leadership and general management and have also read books by Peter Drucker and Dale Carnegie, as well as biographies of some of the greatest leaders ever like Abraham Lincoln, Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr and such. My takeaway from all this reading is that a leadership is a thought, not a person. A thought that excites its followers and stimulates their brain so the leader and the follower(s) work in harmony and synchrony like a perfectly oiled machine with all the gears engaged and grinding together to produce an established outcome or a common goal. As a curious observer, I came across one such leader when I was on a business trip to Honeywell Technology Solutions Bengaluru. I had the opportunity to know Mr. Sunit Saxena. Sunit is a senior engineering manager at Bengaluru for Honeywell Technology Solutions. Sunit has developed a team of around 20 highly motivated individuals working overtime and odd hours developing some of the greatest products for Honeywell Aerospace business. I was amazed to see a unique style of leadership. The team looked enthusiastic and happy to help. Sunit told me that he and his team make sure to spare one hour every month to meet casually with the entire team over some snacks and tea. During this time, the members come with an open mind, leaving their projects or their titles outside the room to discuss serious matters in a casual way. This platform allows them to have an emotional bond. It also allows them to realize the typical work they do during the day and odd late hours is not for their boss and not because they have to do it, but because it is their team’s responsibility to deliver. In other words, they feel responsible for the team’s overall goals. If one team member has a deliverable due or a meeting very late in the day to match time on U.S. east coast, the remaining team does not simply wrap up and go home. Rather, they stay back and continue making progress in their own projects. This creates a perfectly harmonious functional team, which works together and not in parts. All this coherence in the team is accomplished by that monthly one hour snack party. I call it “Kachori Leadership”. (Kachori is a spicy Indian snack, very famous in northern India). Kachori leadership allows team members to openly express their opinions, ideas, complains or concerns, knowing that their ideas matter. Even though it is an open forum, none of the conversations or feedback is taken for granted. Each comment is seriously noted and acted upon for marginal improvement. This cycle of feedback, action and improvement gets constantly polished over time and results in a high performing team. Average managers lead the entire team in a uniform fashion and move in the same direction, while the Kachori leadership style allows a leader to discover what is unique about each individual and then they capitalizes on it. This was evident when I noticed that each team member in Sunit’s team had a unique personality. Funny enough, I even noticed that each team member was given a second name that linked them to some famous person in history. This behavior was a way of recognizing each person’s individual strengths and capitalizing on them. In other words, the whole group felt bigger than the sum of its members. The whole team felt like a big family where everyone knows everyone and everyone wants to work with everyone. Here are things you can do to employ Kachori Leadership: Plan a biweekly or monthly recurring time to know your team. Use this time as active brainstorming session in the disguise of casual socialization. Plan ahead, sow the seed of topics to be discussed, but listen and let the team talk. Take note of all comments and all conversations that are happening and later act upon them. Treat each individual with respect and try to establish “we focus” instead of “I focus”. Show genuine interest in each individual and try to remember each person’s name and address them with their name. Become genuinely interested in other people and make the other person feel important, but do it sincerely. Kachori leadership theory can be applied anywhere across the globe. For example, teams in the U.S. have meetings over doughnuts and coffee or a monthly pizza party. However, a lot of onus is on the leader or manager of such teams, because they have to learn to use this precious casual time to gather feedback and act upon it to constantly improve their team’s performance. To support my theory of leadership impact on team performance, I take the following passage verbatim from Goleman, Boyatzis and McKee’s study of Primal Leadership. “A leader’s emotional style drives everyone else’s moods and behaviors-through a neurological process called mood contagion. It is like smile and the whole world smiles with you. Emotional intelligence travels through an organization like electricity over telephone wire. On the contrary depressed, ruthless bosses create toxic organizations filled with negative underachievers”.