Showing posts with label RaNdOm ThOuGhTs. Show all posts
Showing posts with label RaNdOm ThOuGhTs. Show all posts

Friday, 13 October 2017

Men are not superior to women: Blog#316

Men are not superior to women

Please read the title of blog again. Men are not superior to women. Having said that, women are not superior to men too. They are two genders of humans. Are they the same? Absolutely not. They are evidently different. It is this difference which we should celebrate.

Now, have a look at the picture given here. It is from an advertisement brought out by a firm that makes suits for women. It is wrong on so many levels. I don’t think many people understand feminism in its true sense. Many tend to think that feminism is about showcasing women as better beings than men. At times, some people think it is about falsely emulating all things bad about men. For instance, if some men choose to use abusive words while talking, some women who have a false understanding of feminism also use abusive words. Abusive words are unpleasant, be it used by men or women. To my mind, feminism is about equality for the female gender. She should not be discriminated against, in any regard due to her gender. Men and women are different beings but not inferior or superior in any way in comparison to each other.

This Ad is a perfect example of using feminism in the wrong way. It showcases women in suits with naked men in the background. What is this Ad trying to say? If one wears a suite, will they become powerful? Does having naked people in your house mean power or wealth? Does having power and money give you the ability to hire people? Does having power and money give you the ability to do anything you want to the people around you?

Some people might argue that this is just a role reversal of what we see in advertising. Well, this is lazy and irresponsible creativity to say the least. By that logic, imagine an Ad against child abuse - The picture has a child abusing an adult. How is it justified? It is exactly that which is happening here. Should advertisements stop objectifying women? They must. But this is not how you make them do it.

Now, let us look at the race here. All men featured in the Ad have white skin. Why? Reverse this and imagine the furore this Ad would have caused. If that is wrong, this too is wrong. We need to look at people and provide them opportunities for who they are as human beings and not for what their skin color is.

This Ad is a very uneducated, provocative take on issues which needs to be dealt with taking time, effort, context and finesse.

Friday, 19 May 2017

Indian National Anthem: Blog # 300

Indian National Anthem

Every single time I hear our national anthem, I get goose bumps. It reminds me ever so gently, the greatness of our fascinating country.  There was an ongoing debate if we should play the national anthem at the movie theaters or not. I saw some merit in those arguments. Where I did not see a merit was when some people were wondering if we should stand up for the national anthem at all. What is there to debate in respecting one’s national anthem? Do we debate if we should respect our elders? Anyway, the decision of playing the national anthem is already made. So there is no point going back to that debate again. The reason I am writing this blog is the way in which the National Anthem is played in the theaters these days.

I am a movie buff. I watch at least 3 movies a week. In all the theaters that I go to, all we get to hear is a usual rendition of the national anthem - nothing awe inspiring! It is a movie theater and the moments when the anthem is played can be made MAGICAL, to say the least. We have so many beautiful renditions of the anthem as below:

Have a look at another beautiful rendition of the anthem by a set of some incredibly gifted children.Watch this video from BIG Cinemas and I assure you that you will be moved. It is such a breathtakingly beautiful depiction that it will leave you a lasting memory. At a time when there is a lot of debate about the need for unity among people from different walks of our country and world at large, imagine what such a beautiful message on National integration can do!


Imagine watching your national anthem beautifully depicted on the vast expanse of the silver screen. What a beautiful moment that will be! This is a humble petition to the theater chains to include the depiction of our national anthem in a way that lives up to its greatness.

Thursday, 3 November 2016

Pictories #1 ~ Of pictures and the stories they tell ~ Blog # 278

Pictories #1 ~ Of pictures and the stories they tell

                   I have always admired people who can capture a moment in time more beautifully than we, the lesser mortals see it. Yes, the magicians who create magic with a lens and a click – Photographers! Such talented people. I shared some of my pictures with one of my friends, who is a very talented artist. He told me “Yea, these are ok. You will get better”. I was not exactly excited to hear those words. But I know what he meant and he is too earnest a friend J. It takes a lot of patience, an eye for detail and an eye for beauty that we see around us to get that perfect click. So I will keep trying.  

            Meanwhile, I thought I will try and share what was going through my mind when I was clicking these pictures. It is indeed true that a picture speaks a 1000 words. And the best part, it speaks different sets of words to each of us. So here goes J

Trees, Road, Infosys, Infosys Office, Infosys Chennai

This was clicked at the Infosys office in Chennai. In that moment, I was thinking, how much ever we try, we rarely come close to what nature can achieve. Look at the magnificent canopy that nature has created for itself and for us! Do you see the little patches of light on the road? Intricate, isn’t it? And many a time, we get so caught up with our work and life to pause and take a look around. It is all that takes to make our day. 
Jalebi, Yellow Jalebi, Desserts, Indian Deserts

Looks can be deceptive. These Jalebis were not as tasty as they looked. I wish if I hadn’t eaten them before taking a click. Had I not tasted, I would have had a happy memory around this pic. Now when I see it, all I can think of is the mild disappointment. I always eat the dessert first if it’s on my plate. Patience doesn’t really come to my help in those moments. How about you?

I feel there isn’t even one color in the world which is not present in this picture. These are handmade, little flowers made out of palm and coconut leaves. I have always been drawn to handicraft. What intrigues me is the fact that each and every one of these little things is made by a person. It is not created by the mere movement of machines. There is a story behind each of them.

Words fail when we try to describe the beauty of fire. My wife and I were out for a stroll at night. There was this fire burning by the road side. Being in Bangalore, fire and its warmth from the distance is quite welcome. I stopped and stared for a while admiring how fascinating fire is. Very few things in life can destroy with as much grace and poise the way fire does.

Well, Kerala, Kitchen, Kerala Kitchen

Now, those of you who have spent your childhood in Kerala would relate to this picture. This is a little bucket resting on the pavement of a well waiting to be flung in. In olden houses of Kerala, these windows will open out to the well from the kitchen. There will be a similar window on the other side of the well that opens to the bathroom. Much before motor pumps started humming, water used to come up in these little buckets. This picture brings back memories of childhood.

Like the above pics? Want to be bombarded with such images on a regular basis? ;). Please follow me on Instagram. My Insta handle is roamdworld .

Check out the other Pictories:

Find Pictory #2 here
Find Pictory#3 here
Find Pictory#4 here

Thank you dear Nandakumar uncle for putting this idea of Phlogging (Photo – Blogging, as he calls it) in my head. 

Monday, 27 July 2015

Homage to Inspiration : Blog # 234

Homage to Inspiration

 Very rarely, there comes along a person who transcends all man-made boundaries be it of region, religion or race; one whose life story becomes an inspiration to others who come to know of him either through words or through experience.

Many a time, it is the designation that one attains through a lifetime of industriousness that adds glory to a person. But at times, it so happens that the person himself becomes such a luminary that the designation he carries glows in reflected glory.

Thank you Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam for giving us reasons to believe in our beliefs and the audacity to dream our dreams.

October 15, 1931 - July 27, 2015

Rameswaram ~ Madras Institute of Technology(MIT) ~Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO)~  Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO)~ Scientist ~ Padma Bhushan~ Padma Vibhushan ~ Bharat Ratna ~  Doctoral degrees ~ Numerous Honorary Doctorates ~ Professor ~   Chief Scientific Adviser~ Honourable President of India ~ Inspiration for Generations

Sunday, 26 July 2015

Small talks aren’t Small: Blog # 232

Small talks aren’t Small

            During my MBA days, I remember thinking about a paradox concerning myself. Whenever someone asked me as to why I wanted to pursue a course in HR, I used to tell them that I am people’s person. Slowly I was wondering if I were really one. I found it easy to relate to people and get along with different kinds of people. But I preferred limiting my conversations to the specifics. I did not believe much in small talks and extended conversations with people outside my friends circle. My friend, Vivek on the other hand always took an effort to strike up a conversation. Be it with the watchman of the university or with the Dean. I saw that it was working well for him. There was always an extra bit of lee way given to him by these people.

            Once I started working, I realized small talks matter! They are the easiest means to build relationships.  I work in a firm which is known for its processes. Numerous tasks are designed to work through flawless processes. Even then, there are times when human intervention is needed. Slowly and steadily, I was realizing it is people who get things done and not processes. This is as much true for an entry level employee to a someone at a vice president’s level. The reason being if we go strictly by processes, there are things which people are expected to do and they will do it. But if you have to get them to go the extra mile, they need to have a personal stake in it. This personal stake comes through relationship building.

            It is wonderful to see how extra helpful people become if you spend a couple of minutes talking to them. I was working from a different office last week and hence was completely unaware of the smaller details of that office – where can I get a photocopy, whom do I talk to fix the projector and such. I wanted to conduct a training session for the senior managers. The training room’s key had to be collected from the security. While doing that, I spent about 3 minutes talking to that person asking where he is from, how long he has been with the company, his name and such details. Once the training was over, I again spent a couple of minutes with this person. I told him how tiring a day it was and listened to his woes too. I asked him about the ongoing construction in the campus even though I knew what those buildings were for. The second day, I wanted some photocopies for the session and guess who helped me! It was not his duty to help me but he did since we were less of colleagues by then and more of friends.

From the above situation, I feel the art of small talks has to take a 3 pronged approach. The first stage is to get introduced. Once the getting to know each other on a basic level is achieved, try and relate to that person. It is important in this stage to not patronize the other person especially in a work environment. One should connect like peers would. The third stage is to seek answers even if it is for questions to which you already have an answer to. This way, the other person feels that you rely on them and hence trusts them and they in turn would begin trusting you.

Having said this, please do not start small talks on a superficial or a selfish level merely to get things done. People are smart enough to see through such attempts. We should look at it as an opportunity to build a relationship.

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

Tweet against Modi! : Blog # 231

Tweet against Modi!

    At first, it was Miss. Seth. Now, it is Miss. Dhupia. I am beginning to wonder if there is a pattern. Has tweeting against the PM become a quick and easy way to get some attention?

For those of you who are not on twitter, this is how it works. A celebrity or someone half a celebrity tweets against the PM. He has an ardent fan following on twitter. To an extent that some of them are not open to any sort of criticism against their leader – constructive or otherwise. The moment a tweet criticizing the PM is made on twitter, there will be numerous reactions-good, bad and ugly. This makes the profile of the person who made the criticism, very visible. Now, the person who gets attacked on the twitter starts lamenting that he/she was abused for whatever one said.

What I fail to understand is this victim card which this person plays. What are they surprised and complaining about? Is it about the negative reaction that they got? I don’t think this is something new. When it comes to matters of religion, region or politics, we as a country has always been quite passionate. Many of us tend to lose reason and perspective when we discuss the above said issues. Just that on twitter, all these reactions are on a much larger scale and hence the visibility is higher. Even otherwise, when you make an observation or an opinion, one must be ready to accept the backlash especially when it is against the popular opinion. Now, do you think our celebrities are not aware of this? All of them are well read, well traveled and well informed. They are cognizant of what is going to come their way.

Now, what does a celebrity stand to gain from it? Much, apparently. If you are not an A-league star, it is imperative that you make efforts to remain in public memory. This is because their popularity has a direct bearing on their career. How years of experience is to a working professional is how popularity is to a celebrity. In this day and age of information deluge, it is very easy for the public to forget a celebrity. When such an incident on twitter happens, the celebrity springs back to popular gaze. It is almost similar to having a new film released for them. Add a bit of smart PR work to it, write an open letter if you are good with words, get some other celebrities to share a few words of concern for you and voila, you are back in the game of being popular.

You might ask so what about the vicious personal attacks against them? Are they justified? Not at all! But not expecting them is like wishing away all that is bad in the world. We do not live in a Utopia. We are far from it. There are people of all sorts around us. There are options on twitter to delete a tweet. Why do the celebrities wait till the tweet to get re tweeted by 1000s of people? Why do they wait for all the abuses to come? If you see personal attacks coming your way and if you can’t take it, you delete it right at the beginning. So you do need the attention and the popularity. One might say that is his/her right to expression. Doesn’t the same hold good for the people who react? They might be doing it in a crude way. But that’s who they are. You can’t expect everyone to react the way you want them to.

When you cut onions, you do get tears. The question is if one is claiming that they are tears of heart ache and reaping some sympathy! 

Tuesday, 7 July 2015

An Earth hour a day : Blog # 229

An Earth hour a day

Yesterday, all of us had returned from office by around 8 at night. By  9 o clock, the power in our apartment was gone. Being in Chennai, there is nothing romantic about a power cut, whatever time of the day it is, thanks to the weather! Still, we were hopeful that the power will be back soon. 

We started talking. The conversation took many detours and went down the long winding lane of memories. We realized that we were drowned in silence when the power was there. The only sounds which were making our presence felt in the room were the pings emanating from our cell phones.

I remember the power cuts which used to be a routine when we were in school. This is the time when the candles of the house come out from hiding. The elders in the family will seek solace in the handmade-newspaper fans and we, the children used to huddle around the candles. This is when wax creativity attained new heights at times, putting even Madame Tussauds to shame. Another art form which originates during the power cuts are the shadow wars. We make all sorts of shadows manipulating the light which the candle spreads on the walls.

But what I really miss is the little conversations which used to shine through like stars on a cloudy night. Usually, the conversations begin within the age groups. The elders in the family will discuss their own woes of life while the younger ones indulge in things which matter to them. Slowly, the conversation cuts across ages and moves in to certain aspects which all of us were interested in.

 I remember one of my uncles using those dark half hours to tell us stories of his difficult childhood. Once we asked him as to why he always chose power cuts to tell us such stories. He said “ Because, darkness provides the comfort of not worrying about what one’s eyes look like when one remembers the tougher times of life. It also gives one the courage which comes from not having to look another in their eyes while speaking” We did not understand what he meant back then. Now we do.

I think we all should celebrate Earth hour every day where we sit disconnected from all the wired extensions which have begun to dominate our lives in more ways than one. Undoubtedly, all the gadgets we have today help us to get in touch with people separated from us both by distance and by time; but many a time, at the cost of being disconnected from people sitting right next to us. These days, we don’t look at people’s eyes when we talk to them. Instead, we stare at a 5” screen!

When we indulge ourselves in such Earth hours, there will be times when all that engulfs us might be darkness. There will be long moments which will be drowned in silence. But it is such moments of darkness which will help us discover the twinkle in our loved ones’ eyes. 

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Why buy a Newspaper these days? : Blog # 228

Why buy a Newspaper these days?

              We are living in a day and age where information is no more an elitist entity. There was a time when information was available only to a select few who had either the access or the resources to engage and please people who had that kind of access. Today, the tables have turned. One is blinded by information. There are numerous channels where information is available.

            Let us begin with electronic media. A political leader’s speech or a business leader’s conference or a film star’s movie launch or a cricket match is being telecast live. No one is waiting till the next morning to get these updates. But, not all of us are in a position to analyze the outcomes of the above events. More importantly, many of us lack the expertise to understand what sort of an impact the above events might have in our lives. This can be facilitated by an expert in that field who can be a news reporter.

            Also, when an event of importance occurs, one might not know how it originated. Many a time, we get to see only a Ratan Tata driving out the first Nano car from Sanand. One might not know what relevance Mamta Banerjee has in this context. Here is where a good news paper’s researched article comes handy. Gone are the days when a reporter used to print verbatim of a speech. In today’s world, we have already seen it live. All I am interested in knowing is how is it going to affect me, my family, my state and my country. Good Newspapers tell you that.

            The next medium is the all pervasive Internet! I love internet. But Internet is like that friend of ours who keeps us updated about our social circle but has a tendency to lie. The sad part is we always get to know that our friend has lied only after a long while. The same is the case with our dear internet. There is a lot of misinformation floating around the web. If eminent people like Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam come to know of the kind of quotes attributed to him in the internet, he would want to logout permanently. As much as information it gives, there is no way to know the truth from the fallacy.  Here is where one should read a news paper.

I am not saying newspapers do not mis-report. They also do. But it happens much rarely than on the internet. Also, like us humans, internet is also good at pointing out mistakes in others. So when a newspaper gets some facts wrong, there will be enough and more trolls on the internet that you will come to know sooner that there was a mis-reporting.

          Thanks to our busy-to-breathe lifestyle, none of us have the time or inclination to read and understand about things outside our periphery of concern. The chances of a person working in IT seeking out and reading about Infant mortality rate in our country is very thin. Same is the case with a banker reading up on Cloud technology and its business impacts. A good newspaper will cover almost entire spectrum of   various realms of our lives which one should be at least aware of in order to effectively play the part of a contributing citizen towards the society we live in .

Arun Babu

Wednesday, 24 June 2015

F.R.I.E.N.D.S After Life # 4 : Blog # 227

F.R.I.E.N.D.S After Life # 4

*We, all diehard F.R.I.E.N.D.S fanatics have been waiting forever for the best sitcom ever made on Television, to resume. Here is an attempt to look at what our favorite characters are up to these days.

Joey was at the shoot of DOUL – The movie. There was such a demand among the fans of Dr. Drake Ramoray that the makers of ‘Days of our lives’ had to make it in to a movie. He was trying out a scene where a friend of his lady love was telling him about a tragic neurological disorder. The impact of the disorder was that Drake’s girlfriend loses the ability to understand the concept of loyalty in a relationship. The director was telling Joey that Drake is heartbroken when he listens to this. Joey did not understand why it is such a bad news for Drake. He was arguing with his director that in fact Drake should celebrate such news! 

Phoebe was a frequent visitor to Dr. Gupta’s house these days. They used to have long discussions about extra terrestrial life, the concept of religion, the stupidity of humans’ perceived superiority over animals and such. Mike was not very happy with these meetings. “Phoebe, don’t you think our neighbor is a bit weird?”, Mike asked. People consider me also to be weird Mike. “There is a difference Phoebe. You are the kind of weird person whom one wants to love to bits. Mr. Gupta is the kind of weird person who makes you want to dial 911.” No wonder I love you so much. I did marry a man who knows his way with words. Well done Phoebs!, Phoebe wondered aloud. He is a good guy Mike. Just that he phases out at times. When I ask him where he went, he says he was floating around on the periphery of Himalayas! How cool is that? One day, I will also go along with him. “You do know that a ticket to and from India will cost us a bomb, right phoebe?” This is the problem with you lesser mortals! I am talking about extra sensory perceptive time travel, Mike. “See, now you have even started talking like him! You are freaking me out Phoebe”. Ha ha, aren’t you used to it by now my dear husband?

Ross went over to Monica and Chandler’s place. “Mon, I am thinking of going to Paris. I kind of miss Rachel. What do you think?”. I think you should take me along. These babies are after my life! They don’t let me sleep, eat or live! What do they want from me?” Ross turned towards Chandler. “Dude, what so you think? Should I go?” When you are booking tickets, try and check if all three of us can sit near to each other. That way, I can keep you both entertained during the journey. May be I should take it up as a profession! I can entertain all the passengers on board. I will be the first flying comedian! “Chandler, the airline and the passengers will sue you for mental agony and torture”, said Ross. The first signature on that petition will be mine, signed – Mrs. Bing!, added Monica.

Previous Episodes :

Wednesday, 10 June 2015

You stole our hearts, Lufthansa! : Blog # 224

You stole our hearts, Lufthansa!

One of the early memories I have from childhood is accompanying my mother to the local market. While we walked back to our home, I asked her as to why she bargains so much? She told me that it is something she imbibed from her mother. My grandmother used to say that “One never has too much money to not bargain”. My mother told me that the science of economics and common sense says that one should always strive to maximize utility out of something one buys or owns.

It is said one of the reasons why Asian countries are prospering slowly and steadily has much to do with the habit of saving that people of the continent have. Interesting is the fact that austerity is not limited to people with limited income. Even people who have considerable disposable income keep their ears and eyes open while opening their wallets or swiping their cards these days. I must say the much appreciated Airline world over; Lufthansa has so very rightly tapped in to this very ethos of Indian consumer. Them being a premier airline from Europe, one would assume that their prime focus would be on luxury and comfort. But very swiftly, they realized what I would like to call the ‘mindful spending’ attitude of the Indian traveler. This is exactly why they launched Lufthansa’s Premium Economy ( ). To someone who is a stranger to the most beautiful expression of diversity that is India, ‘Premium Economy’ might sound like an Oxymoron. But if you are Indian, it just makes absolute sense.

I do not know how many of you watched the Advertisement of Lufthansa which talks about having an Indian Heart. A Grandfather very sweetly tells his grandson that Lufthansa is German and how they are different. The advertisement goes on to show that the airline is as Indian as it comes! My sister recently traveled to Atlanta on a Lufthansa flight. She says that the advertisement could not be truer. She says one should have seen the delight on the cabin crew’s face when she was bringing an Indian meal for my sister and that she almost felt at home.

The other day, my fiancee and I were discussing as to where we should go on our honey moon. We were discussing locations and airlines. Fretting over the recent media reports, my lady did mention to me that she would prefer an airline that would understand our sensibilities in a better way.  Having known all of what I have read till date, I can see myself almost looking at a boarding pass with LH printed on it. One knows when the women in the family recommend about something, one should always lend an ear ;)


Thursday, 14 May 2015

Conspiracy against Women? : Blog # 218

Conspiracy against Women?

            I was reading this book, ‘In the land of invisible women’ by Qanta A. Ahmed. It talks about life of women in Saudi Arabia. There was one interesting observation by the author which struck me. There, the women dress up for women. The laws of the land are such that women and men cannot meet socially as freely as they do in other countries. As a result of which, interaction between two sexes are extremely limited. If a woman buys an expensive jewelry or a great dress or goes to a parlor, it is not to impress anyone from the other gender. It is for one’s own kind, the women folk to see and appreciate.

            Initially, I found it as an interesting observation. Then I felt, isn’t it the same in our country? Yes, most of the women tell us that they are doing all the efforts w.r.t presenting themselves well for the men around them. But how many times has their husband or boyfriend or any man in their lives taken notice whenever they have made some change about how they look? Look at something as simple as a haircut. Many a time, we men fail to notice that change. But their girlfriends notice it without fail, every single time! For us to notice a change in the ear ring, it has to be the size of a mini mammoth. But women can spot it from a mile away.

            The conspiracy that I am talking about here is the one which women are doing against women, most of them without realizing it. So if women stop judging other women on the kind of clothes one wears, make up they put on, accessories they choose to flaunt, life becomes much easier for everyone around. For instance, try and watch the fairness cream advertisements. In most of them, after a woman uses a fairness cream, the response or the reaction comes from another group of ladies and not a guy. In some of them, men are completely absent. When a multinational firm designs an advertisement, it is very conscious about its target group. If men were key influencers, they will definitely be there in the advertisement. The fact that presence of a man is minimal in such advertisements points to the fact that men are not an influencing group in this regard. Even the voice over is that of a woman in almost all the Ads.

            So if you try and play down the appreciations or the passing remarks based on how one presents one self, you might save an annual expenditure to the tune of about $950 Million. That is the size of cosmetics industry in our country. 

           Also, many a time feminism emerges only when  a woman is being attacked by the other gender. Somehow the thought of a woman putting down another woman doesn't knock on the feminist conscience! Don't you think it should arise as a support system for the fellow women rather than adding one more aspect to be bothered about? It will be nice to be empathetic ( Thank you my friend, Harleen for putting this seed of thought) rather than pointing out flaws.

            Now, before some of yours claws come out, let me tell you that we the men folk also fall prey to such conspiracies. What we fall for are things like white goods, sports shoes, high end watches and such.

Arun Babu

Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Designed in to thinking… : Blog # 215

Designed in to thinking…

It was a day like any other. Ayush went for breakfast and saw his colleague, Harsh sitting alone at a table. He has been a bit aloof these days. Even for the previous team lunch, Harsh was not very participative; a drastic change from the spirited fresher that he was when he joined Ayush’s team.

There were some calls to be made and some mails to be responded to. Once that was done, Ayush asked Harsh to join him for tea. He declined saying he had some deliverables. Ayush asked him if he will be available by afternoon and Harsh said yes. Ayush went back to his desk and went through Harsh’s performance. It started showing a decline from March, about 3 months from now. There were a couple of mails to which he responded late, he started coming late to office and there were some heated exchange of words with some team members which was very unlike him.

At the tea table, Ayush asked Harsh how his weekend was. Harsh replied :“Usual”. Harsh, do you know what I remember of you when you joined as a fresher? As someone who always asked questions. To be frank ,too many at times  J. But, it always made the team think of the alternatives and the possibilities. These days, you are awfully silent! “Ayush, you are right. There was a time when I used to ask questions. Then I realized as to what is the need? Why should I do this? More importantly, who is listening?” That is not true. We are all listening. “May be, but no one responds Ayush.”

Harsh, you remember that meeting where the VP called you ‘Auto reply’? J. He was praising the swiftness with which you reply to mails. I was surprised that my team’s Auto reply is having a delay of about 2 hours these days! "Ayush, you also know what happened when I sent that mail to AVP. My manager came and told me it should go through him! So now, I am routing everything through him. He is the one causing that extra hour’s delay”. Oh, that must be really frustrating. Let me see what can be done.

 The article that you shared the other day about emerging trends was really good. So it looks like changes are going to happen sooner than we all think, isn’t it? “Yes, Ayush. Apparently, analytics is emerging as a large opportunity. I had presented a paper on emerging trends in analytics when I was in college. Back then, 'Data scientists' sounded like a fancy designation. But today, it is almost common place.” Harsh got a call and both of them went back to desk.

Ayush decided to do something about the Harsh's situation which in a way wasa  reflection of the team itself. He recollected the conversation they had and tried to put them down in to action items. He opened a notepad and it is then that he noticed the white board next to him on his desk. He hadn’t used it for quite a long time. He started drawing whatever came to his mind. He drew pictures of question marks, coffee table, a team, laptop, mail box, letters, newspaper and a person chasing a milestone. Then, he sent out a mailer to his peers and told them that there are certain aspects w.r.t the team which needs their immediate attention. He took pictures of the doodling he had done and made it in to a crisp power point presentation. They huddled in to a conference room and started discussing about what can be done regarding these concerns. Ayush mentioned that these are insights from discussions he has had from some of the junior members of the team. All of them brainstormed and came up with things to do.

The next day, he sent out a mailer called “Game changer series#1”. It read thus:

Dear Friends,

            You all are a great team to work with. We all have grown and evolved through each other’s support. Having said that, there is always room for improvement. This is an endeavor to achieve a better camaraderie between our team members and to further each of ours growth.

            We have come up with some suggestions as below. Please reflect on them and we would love to hear from you.

1.      A weekly meeting for us to talk, get to know each other more, ask questions and if possible, come up with some ideas.
2.      If you have something to share with the team, share on the “wall of ideas” which will be put up in our workplace. You can share a picture of it over mail with the larger team.
3.      Share with us an area of interest you would want to work on and improve. Seniors in the team will help you through mentoring or suggesting courses.

About our team, please write :
I like---- (what you like about the team) &
I wish---- (what if included will make you happier)

This is a starting point. Let’s get the ball rolling.

Warm Regards,

I have tried to weave the concept of ‘Design thinking’ around this story. Please let me know your thoughts.

                                                                                                Arun Babu