Monday, February 19, 2007

Exactly what you tell it to?

The entire last week was a bit hectic with a tight schedule in my work hours, which generally spills beyond normal work hours, if you wish you can even brand me a poor time planner of my activities. I have no issues at all but as they say, "The wearer of the shoe knows best where the shoe bites the most" (or something similar to this, that is not very important as long as you get the point). I knew things would turn out that way, but that’s Ok for me as long as the people I work with and deal with don’t have an attitude. Also I have worked with some smart people, who have so much to offer when it comes to learning both here and in foreign lands. Its like learning becomes a routine affair and it happened without me making a conscious attempt. For me age doesn’t matter as long as there is steady exchange of views and ideas with the person I am dealing with. But I guess, this population is very rare and most end up having truckloads of ego and superiority complex.

I just don’t understand WHY? Now, I don’t personally like meetings. They are affairs, which people higher up in the corporate like to do for long hours. However, what I have seen is that no real work gets done at meetings. What happens at the most is some amount of planning but nothing concrete ever comes out. This is not something new but has been there since the times of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table.

However, that is not the moot point. Without exception, there are few people who have climbed the ranks within an organization based on seniority (not skills in a particular domain). In the end these people have found themselves in a position where they don’t understand the subject matters anymore but what makes them survive is glib talk. By itself, this issue can be sidelined if their management skills were sublime. I’m talking about taking control of projects, designing a new product, working proactively with the team mates and always coming with new ideas (I know these people cannot implement new ideas to the minutest details, but then your experience should germinate new thoughts), creating smart and challenging opportunities and most important motivating individuals.

But trust me, I am talking in a fools world, if you are looking for all this at one place. This is utopia and I have seen some of the best organizations in the world in my 4.5 years of work life so far but not in any place I found all these parameters in place. Fine, I have no comments but then why can’t we achieve that excellence and set the bars to those limits. My funda is only when I set something un-achievable, can I achieve something and that’s what gives me kick to strive for better and more. In the real world, managers will without exception create hassles, slow things down, and ask one to work on an architecture without being clear of what technology they are taking about or may be prepare tons of business logic and intelligent reports. But why? Because they have to validate their presence, as I like to call it. If they wouldn’t bug you with all kinds of questions [mind you most of them are irrelevant to the context] and demand you to report to them about every little detail, the hierarchical level above them would find out that they’re irrelevant in the organization. And egomaniacal as they are, they obviously will never allow for that to happen. At some point of time, they need to show it somewhere, so make someone else "bakra". Bacchu grow up, act smart and not like school kids.

If you think you’re then stuck in this situation, don’t worry. Have you ever wondered why this happens? 99% of all managers will have a direct boss above them and they are sort of middlemen between the top boss and the team below. So in order to show his/her efficiency [no, no its like bahar se efficiency and andhar se inefficiency], this person always wants to impress his/her boss. Often with activities, which are not, possible and attainable in a particular time frame even if one cracks the underlying algorithms on a rapid-fire mode. If that’s the case department managers can be ignored, they can be made extraneous. Just stop following the standard ranks of the organization, and go straight for the top. In most instances, the top management will appreciate to be involved more directly and efficiently, and you will automatically undermine the position of your idiot department manager.

Problem solved, everybody happy. Ah well, if the strategy has proven itself, why not apply it again. Simple, effective, and also a lot of fun.

Hmm, enough of gyan but then I was in some different state of mind for the last few days and this blog window, became my canvas to articulate my thoughts. Now leave all this lets get back to some good fun I had the last Sunday over a late night dinner. I was unluckily to be at work on a weekend but then realized that we had to bid farewell to SUMO, one of my teammates, a pretty senior guy but fun to work with. Since SUMO is moving to Florida for good, so planned immediately, got a gift from Shoppers Shop [thanks to AJ, HadeBoss for taking the role driver for a change, a welcome deviation from his long hours at work digging through the code.] and invited him and his wife for dinner at Magnolia, a Chinese restaurant that is hop-skip-jump from the place where I stay.

The late evening get together was entertaining and the food was good too. Very next to the table where we were seated was a small family with their only kid who would be barely 4 years old, having a good time with the food as well as the relaxed atmosphere. I liked the cute kid sitting next to me and popping her head intermittently while having her food. She was talking to her mama what all she learnt at school the entire last week, was teaching her Mama how to differentiate between a spoon and a fork. The most interesting part in the entire conversation was when she said, "Mama, we will take noodles with the same fork and I will feed you sitting in your lap and I will eat at the same time". She was trying to explain her Mama about a new concept and word that she had learnt in her play school, the word "Sharing".

I was so impressed with this, when I thought this kid is so much better than the junta who talk shed loads only, chucking bombastic jargon often. This kid learnt something, understood it and was applying it in her real life in the most practical way. That’s knowledge.

Life is all about perspectives and I am certainly not clear about the first group called the managers but I am definitely very sure about that kid for her crystal clear approach in understanding and application.

Keep reading and remain connected.

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