May 29, 2008

Reverse Gear!!!!!!

Recently while watching the Virgin Mobile ad; I was relishing my Perk Ulta chocolate.
The ad was completely astonishing!!! It was a humorous ad where a group of youngsters were playing a prank on an employee. The ad showed a sanctimonious humbug employee looking at a brochure which featured an attractive woman’s photo and her mobile number below it. Not able to withstand the temptation of speaking to her; he finally called up the number but the call got picked by a youngster boy who was accompanied with his buddies. The youngster faked his voice and tried to prolong the conversation by sounding like a woman.

At the end of this hilarious ad; Virgin Mobile announced its offer of earning a certain meager amount for every incoming call one attends.For details refer to .

Most importantly I was having my Perk Ulta while watching this and it made me think about the ‘Reverse Gear’ thinking adopted by these two products.

Perk Ulta with its idea of having the wafer outside and chocolate inside is an absolute treat for the taste buds.

As far as the virgin mobile ad is concerned; the offer of earning while attending calls might be an instant hit too. But I shall wait and carefully watch before coming to any conclusion.

I guess it’s not a bad idea to implement this ‘reverse gear’ thinking if it serves a purpose.

Whenever we use the reverse gear while driving, it’s either when we go a little too far or when we want to get in the position in order to move towards the right direction. At the end; it serves a purpose of leading us to the right place. It does not always mean getting behind in the rat race.

The ‘Lateral thinking’ is fantastic and so is the ‘out of the box thinking’. I guess we should give the ‘reverse gear thinking’ also a fair chance.

Well!!! I have fastened my seat belt and I am shifting my gear too. Come along as there are many seats available and it’s gonna be a great ride.

Only word of caution to all of us is ‘Drive Safe!!!!!!!!!’

-Saikat Saha

May 23, 2008

SMS & beyond.............

Hi!!! Today I am going to write about Sharukh Khan, Kolkata Knightriders & a SMS. Yet, I chose to label this article under the 'Human Resource' category.Let' find out why????
Well!!! I shall explain that later in the article but first let me share the SMS which Shahrukh Khan had sent to his Kolkata Knightrider team members. You can also read the SMS and the related article from .
The SMS according to the above link reads as follows:
"Story time boys... I told you if you keep losing you have to bear with my long, boring msgs.... This is your punishment.... Many times I have made movies which don't do well.... When I'm doing them, of course, I don't know they won't do well.... The story is written by somebody else and I just do my bit as an actor. But I have a way of dealing with flop stories, I try my best to keep my character in the film at a level that it makes a failed story also special for me....I enjoy the work.... I make jokes about the failure.... And, of course, feel awful about it too.... So, right now, all of us have become part of a failed script... A bad IPL script.... Let's try and keep our characters worthy of still looking back at this story and remembering it as a special story becos we all worked very hard at this.... So, chin up and don't spoil yr character in the next two games.... Let's go out with a bang and not a whimper.... In films, we say u r only as good as yr last film.... So let's make the whole world know how good we r in the last (maybe not) two games... Also, do ignore all this bit about Dada, me and John having issues.... It's a normal thing in the world.... People like to hit you when u r down.... So, we will be hit.... No stress.... It will make us stronger.... The only way to avoid this is to win.... That's one of the reasons why everybody likes to be a winner.... On the other hand, the beauty of failure is that it brings people together.... So, let's stick this out together.... You know me well enuff to know I am not the kind of owner who has issues with the team 'cos of losses... I am too much of a sport myself to get beaten by defeats.... Like you guys are.... Like Dada and John....I am still trying to understand the code of conduct expected of me at the matches of the IPL.... ICC... etc.... After I understand it, I will decide whether to accept it or not.... Till such time, I will be with you guys at the hotel... in the meetings etc., but won't come for the matches.... So, please don't ever feel it is anything to do with us as a team....I am as dedicated to my Knights as I am to my kids.... Only, I won't be coming to the class room till the headmaster's rules are understood by me.... I am a bit anti-establishment kind of a guy, so I apologise for this quirk to u all.... So, head's up.... Have a good match and let's make 200 runs tomorrow.... This 150 seems to not work any more."

Now that SMS can create a magic to anyone's soul. Truly inspiring!!!!!!
It's filled with wit,humour,command,focus,belongingness,care,energy,guts and HONESTY.Most importantly the last few lines give a sense of purpose to give your 100% when you are almost down & out. And it's just a SMS.
I truly never realised the sheer motivation a mere SMS can extol till I read the above mentioned SMS[a little long though!!!!!]
Now let me answer why I tagged this article under the 'Human Resource' label. Often at workplace one has to meet so many hurdles because of problems relating to miscommunication, communication gaps, unnecessary communication channels etc. It leads to all sort of troubles for the company like bitter relationships, stress,lackluster performance,growing attrition and so on.....................
One has all the resources in the office and also the rare 'common sense' to implement a robust 'communication mechanism' which does not cost a lot of penny either. So it's a high priority goal for every company to look into it's 'communication mechanism' and rethink it's plan of action in reference to it.
We have already witnessed a delightful SMS earlier and the magic it can create so I feel it's wise for the HR superstars to feel inspired by it.
Last but not least, I have started considering Shahrukh Khan as one of my HR guru.
I hope I have answered as to why I labeled the article under 'Human Resource'.

-Saikat Saha
[a wanna be HR superstar]

May 12, 2008

My tryst with the 'Art Of Living' course

I had once read the following in a book - ‘When the student is ready; the teacher also appears’. It holds true for me and also for a lot of my readers. Right from the outset of my life I have always been blessed with lovely teachers who have paved the way through the journey of my life.

On 5th may 2008 I had joined the art of living basic course.

What propelled me to join the course?????

Well!!! I believe I joined it partly because of gaining spiritual strength for my entrance exams, partly because I am spiritually inclined, partly because my UG final year project was on emotional and spiritual quotient [wanted to gain more depth in EQ and SQ],partly for health and mainly because I did not have any clue whatsoever as to why I wanted to join the course.

It was a seven days program which was filled with joy, learning, yoga, sudarshan kriya[one of my personal favorite] and the process of experiencing a personified transformation in mind, body and soul.

The real difference which this course has made in my life is the fact that I am now no more 22 years ‘old’ but 22 years ‘young’.

It has allowed me to recognize the child inside me and I hope I can remain intact with this child forever.

It has taught me how to approach one’s goal in life with a constant smile on the face, enthusiasm in the heart and peace in the mind.

Above all it has introduced me to Guru Dev[Sri Sri Ravishankar] with whom I could instantly share a beautiful relationship. I have started considering him as the embodiment of compassion, innocence, enthusiasm and great wisdom just by looking at his photograph alone.

Even though I have never met him but I have a strong feeling that I shall meet him soon and that experience is going to make me deeper and happier.

I would love to have the equanimity which is exuded through his face.

I started writing this article with the purpose of sharing my experience with all of you but I am falling short of words. I believe one has to experience the magic of this course. I also request you to buy the book titled ‘Sri Sri as I know him’ compiled and edited by Dinesh Kashikar and Sharmila Murarka.

Jai Gurudev!!!!
Let us wish Gurudev an advance happy birthday[13th May 2008] from the bottom of our heart.

May 1, 2008

“But who is listening to me?????”

I have always asked a question to many human resource professionals since my college days. The question is: What are the key qualities needed for a successful HR professional?

I have received all kinds of answers; most of them were elaborated and some of them did not make much sense to an undergraduate student who was in the initial stages of getting acquainted with Human Resource Mgmt [ Though ; they did impress me with the sophisticated corporate lingo].

Finally; I received an answer from a very successful HR professional which had a huge impact on me and I took it very seriously. The two qualities he suggested were: Be a good listener & have a good understanding of the business. I expected a long elaborated answer again but what I got here was a very clear and short answer [It makes me believe that it’s synthesis which matters more than analysis].

Since then I have tried my level best to be a keen listener to what people say, feel and what they don’t say and don’t feel at the workplace and elsewhere too.

As far as understanding of business is concerned; my work experience and undergraduate experience did help me but I strongly feel I am in the nascent stage of my learning curve in that context. Hope my Post Graduate experience helps me as I am keenly looking forward to it.

However; I want to write about the listening factor today.

I find all HR professionals to be very keen listeners. They listen to the candidate while conducting the selection process. They listen to the employees during the grievance hearing sessions. They listen to the employees during the performance appraisals. They listen to the employee during the exit interview. They listen to every people and talent related issues concerning the workplace. Most importantly they are keenly listening if they are doing their job well enough.

Assuming the fact that all HR professionals in a given company are working well enough [ I mean listening well enough!!!] ; then a natural question arises in my mind.

Who is listening to these HR professionals???????????

Don’t the HR professionals also need an outlet to be heard properly????????

I do know that HR professionals are required to listen and provide the solutions but sometimes solutions might not be the solution. In the quest of balancing the company’s interest and personal aspirations, there might not be any pragmatic solution available and the situation might require some deep and keen listening.

But who is going to listen to them???????????

Are the employees going to listen to them??????

Well I find it strange that even though the employees are given the status of ‘internal customer’ in a company; still there is nothing like an ‘appreciation letter’ between the so called ‘internal customers’ and the HR team. The only thing which exists in opulence is the ‘complaint letter’. Being an impractical optimistic person I will not rule out the probability of the internal customers being a keen listener to the HR team though.

HR professionals are expected to listen and perform. That’s the integral part of their job. But the internal customers of the company have to be made realize the importance of being good listeners too. Being a good listener to the HR dept would help the HR team and the internal customers all the more.

I guess it’s time that every company launches a program called ‘Let’s Listen’.

If you are a human resource superstar of your company reading this article and is interested in launching the ‘Let’s Listen’ program then please do so but give me the due credit and visibility for it. I need it desperately as I am preparing for my PG entrance exams.

Happy Listening and Happy Labour Day
-Saikat Saha
[A wannabe HR superstar]