Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Social Media & Split Personality!: Blog#294

Social Media & Split Personality!

All of us have that one friend who leads multiple lives on different social media platforms. On Facebook, s(h)e might be a constantly happy-sunny – on cloud nine – persona. On Twitter, s(h)e might be an astute observer giving his/her two cents on such varied fields as politics, business, entertainment, culture and world affairs at large. On Instagram, there is a photographer dying to be discovered by the world whereas on Linkedin, s(h)e is the best employee of the day, month and year – driven, passionate and AMBITIOUS!!! Here is a fun take on how we express ourselves on different platforms...

To begin with, the display picture on multiple platforms:

Hrithik Roshan, Bollywood, Facets, Social Media, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

Now comes, how we describe ourselves - the 'About Me' on various platforms:

Consider a typical Monday morning. How do we express ourselves?

Now let us look at the all-important #Hashtags :)

Facets, Social Media, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Hashtags, hashtag

How can we end without having a look at the extremely edited, yet #nofilter pictures shared on the channels? :)

Ranveer Singh, Bollywood, Facets, Social Media, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

Ranveer Singh, Bollywood, Facets, Social Media, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram

p.s. Don't forget to share this with your friends on FB, Twitter & Insta - Wouldn't suggest on LinkedIn though ;)

Friday, 24 March 2017

Why kattappa killed baahubali?: Blog # 293

Why Kattappa killed Baahubali?

This is one question that keeps haunting almost all the billion bright minds of India. Here is an attempt to understand what made Kattappa kill Baahubali? Some probable conspiracy theories ~
Ramya Krishnan, Baahubali, Bahubali, Tamil movies, Indian Cinema
Sivagami, the mother: Although Sivagami anointed Amarendra Baahubali to be the king, she was overcome by the love she has for her son, Bhallala deva. To make way for her son to be the King, she orders Kattappa to kill Baahubali. But once the murder takes place, she is overcome by grief, flees the kingdom to save the little kid, Mahendra Baahubali.

Baahubali, Bahubali, Tamil movies, Indian Cinema Bijjaladeva, the envious elder brother: Bijjaladeva realizes that history will continue to repeat if he lets Amarendra Bahubali live. Bijjaladeva’s children will have no claim to the history of Mahishmati. He tricks Kattappa in to believing that Bahubali's horoscope says that the King will bring ruin to Mahishmati. He reasons that it was Baahubali’s birth that caused the death of the queen of Mahishmati, mother of Bahubali. If one's birth could cause harm to one’s own mother, what ruin will he bring to the Kingdom!Kattappa’s unwavering duty towards kingdom of Mahishmati makes him take the extreme step.

Baahubali, Bahubali, Tamil movies, Indian Cinema, Kattappa
Kattappa, the lover: Kattappa and Sivagami were deeply in love. They realized how their vision and love for the kingdom of Mahishmati were so deep and similar. They understood that it was in the best interest of the Kingdom that both of them take over the reins. They convinced themselves that it was the universe that conspired to make them fall for each other. If Bahubali was alive, they will never have a future and thus, the Kingdom will never reach the glory it deserves. Once the king was dead, they could imprison Bijjaladev (Sivagami’s husband) and live happily ever after. 

Baahubali, Bahubali, Tamil movies, Indian Cinema, Rana DaggubatiBhallaladeva, the son: Bhallalladeva is in reality, Kattappa and Sivagami’s love child. Bhallaladeva and Kattappa hid their relationship inside the 4 walls of the palace. One day, he told Kattappa " Oh father! I have never asked anything of you. You even deny me the right to address you as my beloved father when a third pair of eyes are around us. I have just one wish, to be the king of Mahishmati. Wouldn't you make your son's desire come true?". In a Dhritarashtra - esque moment, Kattappa kill sBahubali for his son. 

Baahubali, Bahubali, Tamil movies, Indian Cinema, Prabhas 
Bahubali, the noble King: Bahubali understood that Bijjaladeva had infilterated the ranks and files of his army with traitors. They were planning a coup to overthrow the king. If that happened, there will be unrest in the kingdom and a large number of his much loved people will lose their lives. There was no point trying to fight Bijjaladeva. He thought of approaching his elder brother for peace only to realize he will be imprisoned for life. Too proud to live at another person’s mercy, Bahubali order his trusted aid Kattappa to take his life. 

p.s. These are the reasons I could think of as to why Kattappa did what he did. If your imaginations run wilder, do let me know in comments :) 

                                                                                                                             Arun Babu

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Blog on Dulquer Salman’s Filmography #5 : Blog # 292

Blog on Dulquer Salman’s Filmography #5

Dulquer Salmaan, Malayalam cinema, Dulquer, Indian CinemaIt had been a while since I had seen a Malayalam movie. I was surfing book my show and happened to stumble up on ‘Jomonte Suvisheshangal’. It was such an endearing movie to say the least. I so loved veteran actor Mukesh’s performance. He has always been a natural. To talk about Dulquer’s performance, I felt he has reached that stage in his career where he is really comfortable in his skin. There is this scene when he is in a bus among a crowd of girls. It is so far from his usual self yet he looks so convincing in those scenes. This is an indication that he is very comfortable doing characters that aren’t urban-english speaking-well travelled- mould. When it comes to real life, this sense of comfort is something we all feel when we reach a certain age. We are no more striving to match up to someone else’s ideals. We know what our capabilities and weaknesses are. The hunger to do well is still there, but it is done by pushing the right aspects of one’s persona to make oneself better. Same goes with actors too, isn’t it? 

It is raining Ads for him, a sign of his soaring popularity. Be it electronics, real estate, textiles or automobiles, he has made his presence felt. He is the brand ambassador for Club FM too. But I still hold the grudge against him for not doing enough interviewsJ.

Comrade in America looks like a very endearing love story set in an interesting backdrop. I loved the way words are used in the songs! Such dearth of lyrics these days in songs and those were a refreshing change.

Oh did I mention that he featured on Discovery channel? Yea! Discovery and no less. How more international can one get? Maybe this has something to do with his increasing fan base across states in India and in the Middle East too, thanks to the Malayalee diaspora there.

         His measured responses to the social situations that the state and the country go through is a testimony to the refinement that his mind has undergone over time. He is prudent enough to not make it overt. At the same time, he ensures that his words convey where he stands on this issue. Very few seasoned public figures manage to get this right. Kudos to that. 

 ‘Vikramadityan’ is one of his most under rated movies, don’t you think? It is like Mohanlal’s movie, ‘Pingami’. No one ever talks about that movie when they talk about Mohanlal’s movies. It is a wonderful film with soulful songs (Remember the song, Vennilavo chandanamo?). There are times when one inadvertently tests the limits of a friendship. A seemingly innocuous joke might drift two people apart. But there is always a hope that a friendship reverts to what it was once and will continue to be. I feel this to be true in life and in the film, ‘Vikramadityan’ too. As much as it was a love story, it was about the portrayal of a beautiful friendship too.

Look at this beautifully minimalist of a trailer. How many micro expressions do you see in a span of about 5 seconds? Here is the magical revelation of an actor's brilliance!

Earlier blogs on Dulquer’s Filmography:

Sunday, 12 March 2017

Why do corporate teams turn evil?: Blog # 291

Why do corporate teams turn evil?

Remember school days? Remember competitions in school? Remember winning and losing? Remember being happy when you won and upset when you lost? Some of us would have turned a bit negative in failure. Some of us would have become negative towards self and rarely towards others too. If you were lucky enough to have had good teachers, the moment you turn negative towards others, they would have given you a whack and told you to get over it and try harder the next time. In corporations, this doesn’t happen.
Corporate, Fight, Work, Office, Career

When someone fails in a corporate, the penalty is high. This is fair enough. It makes competition thrive. Having said that, this culture of intense competition kills the smallest sapling of collaboration. How often have you heard a colleague praise another one? They do praise when the two are in entirely different strata (for example, an entry level employee and a leader). The appreciation for a peer is so hard to hear. Why? If one does that, it might enhance the chances of other person’s growth. Why are they against this growth? The reason is that as you move up, there is such less room for co-existence. The pyramid cannot be more pointed!

Now the absence of collaboration leads to the mindset of “That is not my job!” How often have you heard a manager telling a fresher who suggests an idea for the larger team, “You do your job! Don’t get involved in too many tasks. There are other teams to take care of those things! ”We can all talk about organizational goals. But as long as the high premium on success stays, people will try to achieve only their goals and advance their agendas. They wouldn’t care about the larger picture at all.

Most organizations save their costs in employing lesser staff than required. This shortfall keeps the employees so occupied that they are unable to do anything beyond their daily routine. When they don’t have time to finish off their daily tasks, how will they help others? If they don’t help each other, how will personal relationships flourish? In the absence of personal relationships, what collaboration do we expect to happen? Collaboration is essentially lending a helping hand to each other, isn’t it? If people don’t like each other, they will not help one another.

This is where large corporations can learn a lot from startups. Startups are small, nimble and are in a position to maneuver easily. Every large company is made up of small teams. If there is a will, they too are capable of behaving like startups. Now, do all startups embrace the above-mentioned characteristics? Absolutely not! There are startups with founders whose egos are more inflated than their firms’ valuation. This trickles down the organization and people are at each other’s throats. But there are some smaller organizations who spend their time and energy on making their teams better, in terms of inter/intra- team relationships and dynamics as much as they focus on business. It is this aspect that larger organizations should emulate. 

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Is profanity lazy comedy?: Blog # 290

Is profanity lazy comedy?

There are some popular Indian standup comedians. Popularity doesn’t necessarily mean talent, though. It is like someone being a star or an actor. Many a time, these are two mutually exclusive sets. Is that why they resort to abuses in all of their videos?

I do not want to stereotype all the standup comedians. Neither do I want to make a sweeping generalization. There are some who speak the language that you and I use and still manage to evoke laughter out of the audience. The more talented ones even make people think and push them towards challenging the mainstream line of thought. 
Profanity, Comedy, Stage, Standup Comedy, Humour

The moment anyone is questioned on anything, the phrase ‘freedom of expression’ pops up. It is a phrase that we use very loosely. It doesn’t mean one can say whatever comes to one’s mouth. One needs to apply mind also to the words before one speaks. Of course, this doesn’t mean one should think or speak only on the lines of what the popular narrative is. Anyone with a valid reasoning should and must challenge status quo and conventional thoughts. That is how we evolve as a society. But this doesn’t mean one can be a motor mouth. Anupam Kher once said that if you find the tone/content of conversation you use to be acceptable at your home, you can use the same language in public too. Do you think these comedians will be using the same language when they sit with their family? I think not. If that is the case, what gives them the liberty to do so with others?

At times, blurting out profanity is equated with being ‘cool’. To my mind, it is the sheer lack of vocabulary. In this case, it is lazy creativity and lack of talent. Most of the popular comedians are aware of the power of abusive words. The moment a four letter word is mentioned, they get the audience’s attention. It is merely because of the shock factor. In day to day lives also, we tend to turn our attention towards someone who abuses for it indicates a situation of extremity. But no one wants to spend a whole day listening to someone whose words stink. It is a short-lived trick to get more and more people to watch their videos.

The artists that we have seen over the years did not have a sense of entitlement. Many were vain, some of them were pompous and a fewer still were arrogant. But a sense of entitlement was absent. Alas! All we can see in today’s comedians is just that.

One of the comedians was so full of himself and his little circle of friends that he proclaimed that they were the most progressive minds in the country during an interview. This is exactly what the so-called regressive minds also think! The tragedy is that in their haste to portray themselves as apostles of free speech, they are unaware of how foolishly they imitate the tricks of those whom they call rigid and close minded. 

Monday, 6 March 2017

Notice Period?Be Nice to them! : Blog #289

Notice Period?Be Nice to them!

              Notice period is a tricky time in all of our careers. It becomes even more difficult when managers try to be at their insensitive best. If anyone from your team is on notice period, be nice to them. I have seen some managers making the foolish decision of being nasty to their employees during those times.

 To begin with, it is nice to be nice. If that isn’t reason enough, they are going to be your company’s brand ambassadors to the world. They have a lot of credibility having worked in your firm and being fresh out in the market. An employee going out with a bad experience is the worst branding that your firm can have. If you are not concerned much about your firm and if you think that the larger organizational performance has nothing to do with your growth, my condolences. You may stop reading this blog right here.
Notice Period, Work, Career, Office, Job
Now, how much of a difference can one person make in an organization? By now, those who have a thinking mind would know that each person is important in a company’s organizational structure. Be it a company with 100 people or with a few lakhs. One person can bring about a huge change in an organization. That person need not even be at a leadership level to impact a change. Having said that, much greater is the impact a person can cause in a team. If one of your team members is leaving, you will need to find a good replacement. If you give a tough time to an employee of yours, they will not go out silently. Thanks to social media channels, it doesn’t require much of an effort for a job seeker to find out who one’s reporting manager is going to be. All it takes is one ping to the disgruntled team member to find out what managerial style a person has. The moment a candidate gets a negative feedback about a manager, he/she will pull back. Every good candidate these days will have multiples offers on hand. Right there, you lose out on a good candidate.

Is this a one-way street? Absolutely not. The outgoing employee is also expected to be graceful in the exit. One must not forget that the organization and the team would have contributed a great deal to one’s growth. One should ensure that transition is smooth and the team is well equipped with the knowledge needed to induct the next new recruit. More often than not, the managers ensure that this knowledge transfer happens effectively. It is the treating-the-employee-well part that is often taken lightly.

Organizations often take great care in welcoming new employees. However, minimal effort goes in to ensuring that an employee who has stayed with an organization and contributed to its growth for quite a number of years goes out with a smiling face. At best, the teams organize a call, cuts a cake and everyone speaks like the person is dead. It is more of a eulogy than an appreciation session. How about dropping the person home?  How about giving the person a collage of hand written notes and a plaque of appreciation? How about a chance for him/her to bring the family to office on the last day? These are tiny gestures which will go a long way.   

Arun Babu

Thursday, 2 March 2017

Words! : Blog # 288


Words, Urban dictionary, Pop culture, Millennials  You know what is rare in the world we live in these days? Conversations. Thanks to the gadgets, we don’t even look at each other. Let alone talk. Rarer still are good conversations. Good conversations need good words. If you choose the words carefully, they have the ability to influence people. Carefully nurtured words make poets out of normal people.

Now coming to the way many of us talk these days. There is such a lack of vocabulary. It is either lack of awareness of words or just plain laziness. Here are a few examples:

I was surprised to see that – What the @#$%!

I was shocked to hear that – What the @#$%!

I am proud of your achievement – Dude, what the @#$%!

I was very happy to meet my friend – I met my friend and I was like, what the @#$%!

I met my family after a long time. I was so moved – I met my family and I was like what the @#$%!

My friend gave me a birthday gift. Something I have been wanting for a long time. I couldn’t thank him enough – My friend gave me a birthday gift. I was like what the @#$%!

I got very less marks in an exam I thought I will ace. I was very disappointed. – I got very less marks in an exam and I was like, what the @#$%!

If the above isn’t enough, the below words are used with such carelessness that will put a snail to shame:
Dude (To be read as Duuuuuuuudeeeeee!!!)

         Imagine all of us talking to each other with a set of 10 words and nothing more to add. How limiting will that be! If this continues, that is exactly where we will land up. Let us please start talking with words and not just lazy profanity.