Tuesday, 20 November 2012


Many years ago I attended an interview
a corporate interview
three wise men on one side of the table
me on the other side of the table

They asked me a question
but were not listening to my answer
one stared in intimidation, the other looked bored
and the third emitted sheer indifference

in desperation I looked behind them
there was this blank wall
which gave no cues of encouragement
but atleast no discouragement-as from  the wise three men

so I looked at the wall neutral , and continued my answer
I could atleast  retain the flow of my speech
without intimidation without discouragement

why do we do this? I asked myself-
meeting candidates as if a favour to them
using interview not to know and understand their fit
but exhibiting  our own  importance
exhibit our knowledge as being more than theirs
 and generally belittle the hapless victim

Is it because in India
we have so many people ?
if not one then another one ?
'my whim',  influence or money determines selction
correct fit is just for the books!

Has anything changed over the years
methods, approach or styles of interview ?
Has awareness changed in the globalised era ?
Sadly  not much- hardly at all in manufacturing

There is  still the feeling
" giving my time for this is a favour"
 too much time
 waste of time!

The other day I organized- 
for  frequently interviewing , senior leaders
a training program on interviewing skills

but there were few takers...
many never turned up
even the ones who came
felt one day was too long-
half a day is the maximum time
that one can spare from a busy schedule

others were aghast and felt it a  blasphemy
to be told  they need training
for the  mere role of interviewing!
After all what was their experience ?
 What was their stature?

Oh when will corporate leaders realize
that recruiting is serious business
that  recruiting right is the key.....
an antidote to future heartburns

If only we cared for people
right from the beginning
we would have happy candidates at the interview stage
happy employees at a later stage
 contributing fully zestfully

 for they were selected  by diligent leaders
sincere and responsible leaders
carefully for their worth-  for their fit
they sit pretty and comfortable in their roles
they are not square pegs in round holes!

Friday, 9 November 2012

Till yesterday we were friends!

Yes, till yesterday we were friends
infact very good friends
we had joined together as engineering trainees
experienced the rumble & tumble together
of fitting in- graduating from the campus to corporate

first two years just flew away
so much to learn.. so much to share...
so much to learn together

our discussions helped in deciding
whom to trust,  whom to look up to
and whom to be weary of...

we shared intelectual notes and frivolous banter
books technical and fiction
we went for the movies together
thoroughly enjoyed each other's company

Was it him or was it me who first realized
the importance of getting ahead
and not just being an equal- even if equally learning & evolving

so suddenly there was this need
to impress the boss more- to be one up
be the earlier one to get promoted
and be ahead in the race

yes, this has its price
we miss some things
we dont talk like old times
we are guarded when with each other
take potshots at each other
at every opportunity

perhaps it is a small price to pay
for success & personal achievement
to be ahead of others- before everyone else

After all winning is every thing
individual glory is everything
says the American dream

 the western thought-the first world
reminds us again and again
that  winning and being a winner is paramount.

yet sometimes in a quiet moment
I wonder- why does this system , the corporate system
turn friends to adverseries?
Is it the only way
that we can get the best for the organisation?

Belbin said we can each give our unique self to the team
One can  shape, another impliment yet another finish
there are others who can  cordinate, teamwork or create ideas
one does not compete with the other
but compliments for a wonderful synergy

Our corporates sadly think otherwise
So I can never be one with my  friend again
after all it is through  this struggle that I can get ahead
And my company too can stay ahead !