August 25, 2008

Mid 20 crisis!!!!!!!!!

Well!!! you have heard and read enough about the mid 40 crisis.....

Let's contemplate on the mid 20 crisis now!!!!

'Mr X is 27 years old and has been working in an IT company for the past 5 years. The promotions are happening in a consistent pace and the bank balance is reasonably fat [the body is also fat!!!].Future seems promising with a seemingly optimistic chance of getting a leadership role.But work pressure is too much and there seems to be more tempting oppurtunities in other companies too.

However; His best friend from a reputed B-School strongly feels that he should quit his company and prepare for his GMAT/CAT/XAT.Mr X does not have the time to prepare for the aptitude test.

His parents[unaware that he is committed] are keenly searching for a potential bride for him.

His girl friend who is also working in the same company has no plans of marriage for the next three years...

And he is definitely in a deep crisis for the above reasons.'

Mr X is certainly familiar to us. There are many such youngsters who seem to be in the midst of this 'mid 20 crisis'. They are young,spunky, promising yet confused and stressed.

Let me write my thoughts on why it happens:

  • Oppurtunities are many and they want to leverage the best.

  • They also desire a proper work- life balance but are not clear about
    how to achieve it.

  • They are intelligent and want to use their acumen in further education.

  • At this age they are energetic & focused and want to do professionally well but they also have to get ready for marriage where priorities are to be re-defined .

  • Different approach from parents towards life at this age; which might not be well endorsed by the youngsters.

  • Women want to delay marriage and become financially independent.

    Now what can be the HR's role in this issue. Let's discuss:
  • Recognise and accept the situation.

  • Recruit candidates who have greater clarity about their professional life.

  • Encourage employees to go for higher studies by sponsoring their
    education and providing them better job profile post completion of
    higher education.

  • Help employees to achieve better work-life balance.

  • Have counsellors who can assist the employees with their personal life.

    Guess!! 20-20 cricket is not the only 20 something issue that should concern us........

August 13, 2008

In Conversation.....

Consider; leaving your homeland at a tender age of ten...consider; staying away from your parents for fifteen years...consider; working hard and being able to enter one of the most reputed institution of our country in the midst of numerous adversities.....
It's certainly a tough consideration.

Lhakpa Tsering; a student of Madras School of Social Work has lived it.
This young,soft spoken Tibetian from MSSW is my class mate and just in a span of four weeks he has become one of the most loved friend in our class.

I had a conversation with Lhakpa regarding his past,present and his promising future.

Saikat: Brother; how would you like to introduce yourself to my dear readers?
Lhakpa: I am a Tibetian and have been staying in India for the past 15 years.

Saikat: What are the simmilarities in Tibet and India?
Lhakpa: I feel culturally it's simmilar especially because both the countries believe in non violence and have deep spiritual awareness.

Saikat: From your childhood memories what aspects of Tibet do you miss the most?
Lhakpa:Well!! I miss everything about Tibet and feel deeply emotional about what the country offered me during my childhood.What I brought along with me in India was the Tibetian values I learnt there. In Tibet; the bonding between friends and families is of greatest importance. We love fostering relationships with abundance of love and mutual respect.Values ,spirituality and relationships are much more important to us than money or material gains.

Saikat: Do you regret the fact that you left Tibet?
Lhakpa: I regret leaving Tibet as it's really tough to leave one' s motherland and to stay away from parents at the age of 10 years. But I do not regret coming to India as the country has supported us and I have developed great friendship with Indian people. The education which I have recieved here has also been great.

Saikat: How difficult was it for you to leave Tibet?
Lhakpa: At the age of 10 years; it was tough to recognize the events happening around me.I just listened to my parents and followed their instructions. Being away from parents was the toughest part. As a kid; I used to wonder why are they telling me to go away from them. It must have been equally tough for them too.Later; I realised why they decided to do so.It was also difficult to adjust with the climatic change and food initially.

Saikat: Since; you are talking about food; I am tempted to ask which dish you liked the most in Tibet?
Lhakpa: Definately; the momos but even now I do enjoy eating them in a Tibetian restaurant near Loyola College.

Saikat: We should go there during a weekend. Anyways; Now that you have joined one of the best institution of our country; where do you see yourself in the future?
Lhakpa: I would like to work in India but my dream is to have a Training and Development company in Tibet. I want to focus on Institutional training and when the corporate culture in Tibet grows and prospers; I would also get into Corporate Training.

Saikat: What is your vision for Tibet?
Lhakpa: I want it to be like Switzerland. It's already blessed with great scenic beauty. I want it to be a favourite tourist destination and a strong economy.It should be called the 'Switzerland of Asia'.

Saikat: What is your message to the Tibetian youth?
Lhakpa: Excel in whatever you choose to do in your life and always have a firm belief in non violence and mutual respect. Be the perfect ambassador of Tibet by always keeping the Tibetian values in your mind and heart.

Saikat:Please tell me more about Tibetian Values?
Lhakpa: I personally believe that it signifies mutual respect, non violence,courage and excellence.

Saikat: What's your message to the Tibetian youth in India?
Lhakpa: Please embrace the oppurtunities to learn every day. Education has a lot to offer so be educated and share your learning with others. Always remember that the pen is mightier than the sword.

Saikat: Tell us about your experience in India?
Lhakpa: It's been very good but I really miss my parents a lot. Indians have been very supportive and I have Indian friends who are lovely. Especially; my experience in Trichy[he did his graduation there] has been fantastic.

Saikat: If this is your last day in India and you get a platform to bid goodbye to everyone; What would you say?
Lhakpa: You guys are rocking!!!!! This country will remain close to my heart forever.

Saikat: And if you meet your parents today; what would you tell them?
Lhakpa: [ He appears emotional] Don't worry about me. I am happy!!! but I miss you all.....

Saikat: Do you have a message for His Holiness; Dalai Lama?
Lhakpa: Thanks for the efforts to keep the Tibetian Identity deep in our heart and soul. I admire and respect your message for peace in the entire world.

Saikat: What's your message for the Chineese people?
Lhakpa: We love and respect you but we want to live as Tibetians.

Saikat: What's your message to the Chineese Govt?
Lhakpa: Please; let us live and prosper as Tibetians. We keenly look forward to foster a healthy relationship of mutual respect and love.

Saikat: What are your views on the current Olympics at Beijing?
Lhakpa: I support and respect the spirit of Olympic Games. But I also want the Chineese Govt to have greater respect for Human Rights.

Saikat: Finally; If you get married to an Indian girl then will you take her to Tibet or remain in India?
Lhakpa: [Smiles] I guess I will speak to her and if she is keen to visit Tibet then I would surely take her but I am completely sure that I will take my kids to Tibet and show them it's beauty and culture.

August 9, 2008

Second Thought........

I have written a post concerning the growing demand of woman employees in HR domain earlier too. However; I made another attempt to write on the same subject a few weeks back. So thought of sharing it with my dear readers. Here it goes......

‘Human Resource domain is predominantly a cult domain for women’ says Mr X.

It seems the above line is familiar to any struggling ‘male HR professional’ who is trying hard to get a break in the corporate world.
Consider a typical business school’s campus recruitment scenario where the male students get fretted in seeing their female counterparts grabbing impressive placements in HR domain.

A few questions get triggered if we take the above scenario into account.
1. Is the HR domain dominated by women???
2. Are women being preferred into HR domain because they infuse any exclusive skill set????
The answer to the first question is a straight ‘yes’ which is reflected in the online job portals or any search engine.

Try a search with the key words like ‘HR+woman’ in google and you will be startled [may be not] to find out that various articles relating to the topic. Any job portal will have an exclusive set of HR jobs where only females can apply.

Now, let me attempt to answer the second question where I do feel woman bring an exclusive skill set which is tailor made towards the requirement of HR domain [read ‘Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus’ to affirm your belief]. Woman are traditionally [or may be genetically] more gifted with qualities like communication skills, better abstract or creative thinking, empathy etc. Similarly men are a preferred choice in marketing jobs because of their assertiveness and risk taking ability.

It’s tough to imagine a women marketing a cement product. But on a lighter note; for every ‘Tipu Sultan’ we have had a ‘Jhansi Ki Rani’.
The same thought process applies in the concerned topic. Men have an equal chance of grooming or equipping themselves with the much needed skill sets.

Pragmatically; it’s just that one gender is gifted with a particular skill set suiting a particular gender but they have an equal scope to groom themselves on the required skill set.

Yet; men will be from mars and women from venus.

August 8, 2008

Virtual Team!!!!!!!

Whenever the word 'Virtual team' is used; one can identify it with a typical IT/BPO scenario [ fostering team work with on shore team] but it's presence is there in almost every industry.

Think about the last time you[middle level or lower level associate] met your CEO on an one to one basis or the last time you[CEO/anyone from the leadership team] met an associate from your company's bottom of the pyramid.

Chances are that you are most likely struggling to remember it.
Don worry!!! No one is really going to blame you for that.... Considering that all of us are an accomplice[may be it's not the right choice of word] to it...

But we certainly have to find ways to keep ourselves connected with each other... In second thoughts; not only connected but well integrated....

One easy way is to do it virtually through the routine e-mails, tel-con, video conferences etc or new age stuffs like blog,social network sites,web communities etc.

However; the following points can be kept in the mind to strenghten your approach towards integrating virtual teams:
  • Make the entire process engaging and highly participative.
  • Use a user friendly medium.
  • Define ownership. It can be under the domain of Corporate Communication .
  • Recieve constant feedbacks regarding the approach.
  • Encourage candor and informal tone as much as possible.
  • Encourage process improvements in the context of improving virtual relationships.
  • Induce fun through simple means like wishing each other on regular basis[Happy Monday,Happy Tuesday and so on...] or sharing informal photo albums.
  • Have a genuine effort to meet in person atleast occasionally.

So stay connected...

August 7, 2008

What's your People Philosophy?????

Ask the above question to 10 different HR associates of a company and most likely you will recieve 10 different answers or in the worst case they might repeat the question along with a blank face as their reply.

If the company concerned in the above paragraph is a respected employer then your HR team needs to re-think about why they are respected as one of the best employers in the country. The answer to that question would help them to frame the people philosphy. However; it does not end there as the HR team and every other stakeholder must be made aware of your core people philosophy in the same light as your Vision,Mission and Values.

Now incase your company is not in the list of the respected employers then you know exactly 'why'?????

I have a belief that only a company which has a strong people philosophy can design and deliver it's HR practices in a fair and just manner .

Any good employer would certainly have a clearly defined people philosophy or atleast it would believe in a people philosophy sub-consciously.

Your company's people philosophy would help you to allign your company's culture with the core Vision,Mission and Values as it's the people who have the real 'ownership' to reach your company's vision.

Next time you find a person complaining about your statement being highly philosophical; let him read this post. It might help!!!!!!

August 5, 2008

Cross sub-functional learning

Any HR function in a new age company is fragmented into sub-functions like recruitment,career planning,man power allocation,exit mgmt,process/line HR,training etc.

This categorisation provides a better visible structure to HR but I feel if a proper 'cross sub functional learning' is not done among associates within HR domain then it might lead to de-limiting of learning within the domain.

For example; Once a year; let a specific HR team in your company do recruitment of a particular batch followed by the orientation,training,compensation mgmt,performance appraisal of the same batch so that the HR team can understand the sub-functions clearly and it would also serve the purpose of recognizing the 'ownership' tagged with the concerned batch of employees.

August 4, 2008


Shannon; my senior in MSSW came out with this new word 'Ideatizement' during a conversation today.
It's the fusion of two words 'idea + advertisement' . While discussing the essence of the word 'ideatizement'; we came to a conclusion that it can serve as the process of fostering new ideas and then promoting [advertising] it in order to know the pulse of the stakeholders regarding it's practical application.
Hope the right people working for Oxford Dictionary are reading this post......


I have been 'tagged' by a blogger friend 'Swati' whose blog is a delightful reading experience sheerly because of the impressive presentation and rich content which mainly comprises of poems and her thoughts...

Initially, I struggled to understand the word 'tagged' but now I have decided to do what Swati has done on her blog post after getting tagged by her blogger friends.
These are the rules:
1. Link the person(s) who tagged you.

2. Mention the rules on your blog.

3. Answer all the questions asked below!

4. Tag 5 bloggers by linking them.

5. Leave a comment on each of the tagged blogger’s blogs letting them know they’ve been tagged.

8 things I am most passionate about:
1. Spirituality: It provides me greater depth and meaning to my life.
My prayer is my greatest strength which affirms my belief on goodness
and hard work.I am a devotee of Shirdi Sai Baba.
2. Parents: They are the perfect embodiment of love and
compassion.Whatever is right in me today is because of them.
3. Friends and Cousins: They are my emotional anchor.
4. Aspirations: I am an impractical optimist and my belief of being
the one of the greatest HR practitioner ever has kept me alive so far.
5. Cricket: I feel extra-patriotic when India wins and my appetite for food
reduces when India looses a match.
6. Books: I am incomplete without it.It helps me to learn, un-learn and at times allows me to liberate into a more fascinating world.
7.Travelling: It's lovely to explore new places and know their people, enjoy their cuisine and admire their architecture
8. Writing: It's the best medium to share and align my thoughts...

8 things I wanna do before I die :
1.I wish to be the best 'Son' in the whole world.
2.I wish to be the best 'friend' of many.
3.I wish to be one of the best HR practitioner in the world.
4. Learn to play atleast one music instrument really well or learn painting.
5. Visit many new places.
6. Write a bestseller novel.
7. Work for various NGOs which truly believe in their causes.
8. Built a Shirdi Sai Baba Mandir.

8 things I often say:
1. Wat's up???
2.Arey yaar!!!!
3. God!!!!
4. Om Sai Shri Sai Jai Jai Sai
5. Chillax!!!

8 books I last read:
1. Mediocre But Arrogant by Abhijit Bhaduri
2. Zahir by Paulo Coleho
3. Letters to Sam by Daniel Gottlieb
4. The Saint, The Surfer and the CEO by Robbin Sharma
5. Execution by Ram Charan
6. Straight from the gut by Jack Welch
7. Keep off the grass by Karan Bajaj
8. Three mistakes of my life by Chetan Bhagat

8 songs I listen to over and over again:
1. Taare Zameen Par title song
2. Ashayain khiley dil ki from Iqbal
3. Take it easy by Eagles
4. Tears in the heaven by Eric Clapton
5. Maeri by Euphoria
6. Swades title song
7. Nothing gonna change my love for you by Richard Marx
8. Candle in the wind by Elton John

August 3, 2008

Customer-Centricity of HR Domain

The word ‘customer’ is synonymous with ‘marketing’ context. However; the word has gained a greater relevance for the HR domain from the perspective of an internal entity.

The new age HR practices are conceptualized and delivered towards the ‘internal customer’.

This approach of recognizing the employees as an internal customer aligns the thought process and action of the HR team with a ‘service’ oriented fervor.

The customer centricity approach towards HR serves as a value lever for all the major stakeholders in the company in the following ways:

· Internal Customer: Customer has evolved itself from various avatars ranging from a mere ‘buyer’ to ‘boss’ to ‘king’ to the more recent ‘God’ status.
If the employee receives ‘God’ like treatment from the HR team then no employee would be complaining a bit.

· Management/Leadership team: The management would be able to pursue its role with greater professionalism and sensitivity towards employee’s causes.

· External Customer: The ‘internal customer delight’ would certainly reflect on the services rendered by them towards the external customers in the most delightful way.