Wednesday, January 20, 2010

And then there was a trickle...

A company in a developed country wants to make profits. The company has all its employees based out of that developed country. To make profits, they hire some more in a developing country. More work, better too, is delivered at a lesser cost. Since cost to company is less, profit soars. Since no one is fired, it’s a win-win situation.

More and more companies get onto this success formula. It is too good to be true! There is suddenly a huge demand for professionals in the developing country. So much so that the demand has exceeded the supply of college grads.

A businessman who is not really qualified to be employed by such companies of developed countries sees this gap of demand and supply and sees a business opportunity in the form of contracting employees at a brokerage. The contracting business does the talent search for the hiring company, recruits and, if needed, trains the employees for the contractor and augments the companies’ staff as an associate for a defined duration.

This relieves the hiring company to do the painful task of recruiting and training. The company pays the fees to the contractor and the contractor pays a percentage of this amount to the actual associate. So, the hiring company just has to ‘shop’ for talent with contractors for a price. True, the amount to the associate is almost a trickle now, but hey, for a fresh college grad, even a trickle quenches the thirst!

If the company in the developed country had not thought of increasing their profits and had not outsourced, then there would have been no contractors in the developing country. It is this butterfly-effect of one business venture leading onto further business ventures that stabilizes the global economy…and makes this world fascinating to me!


History repeats

After I returned from US, I was assigned a completely new project in a whole new module. The astonishing part was that I got the exact same cubicle and the same office telephone number I had been using from Jan 2007 to Apr 2009! Incidentally, this is the cube where I have spent the maximum time of my corporate life ever! And, for some reason, whichever office I work in, the office telephone number sticks on to me!!


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Hanuman and Honking

When I was in a temple one day many years ago, I happened to hear a religious discourse going on in the background. The theme of this discourse was on Lord Hanuman and his pious posture of having his hands clasped together in front of his chest, as if saying Namasthe which is a form of either welcome or farewell. The discourse went on to say that Lord Hanuman is also called as the Lord of Vayu (Air). Wiki answers why. Now, the reason for this posture – as given in this discourse – was pretty interesting and amusing. Note that none of the below explanation is mine.

‘Sath’ (Pronounced as ‘Fath’ in ‘Fathima’) in Kannada means ‘Vayu’. ‘Hogbidthu’ or ‘Hoithu’ in Kannada means ‘Gone’. So, ‘Sath-hoithu’ or respectfully ‘Sath-hogbitru’ means someone breathed his last and, literally, that someone’s breath has gone. It is this last breath that goes from the body that is respected by Lord Hanuman. So Namasthe used here is in the farewell form. Lord Hanuman is also supposed to graciously offer this last breath to the Almighty as a form of respecting the departed.

As and when population increased and the rate of deaths proportionately increased, Lord Hanuman was over dumped with this work of bidding Namasthe farewell and hence he got himself the posture of having his hands constantly clasped in front of his chest in the form of paying respect to the ever constant stream of the departed. Yes, pretty amusing.

Now, the correlation. From here on, its my thoughts! Weird thoughts, again!

Honking during driving, I am sure, started – and in most countries, still remains – to correct nearby drivers’ irresponsibility. If and when a driver near you makes a mistake, you honk to create a wakefulness and consciousness to that driver so that the he can correct his irresponsibility before a fatality.

Now, in India, blame it on population, over the period of last few decades, so many learnt to drive that suddenly there are so many drivers in and around you, and so many of them are making mistakes constantly, that it has become inbred in the newborn Indian drivers that honking is a must-do activity, very much hand-in-hand with accelerating, irrespective of anyone actually being around you. And even when the driver in the vehicle beside your vehicle is driving appropriately, or a person is walking peacefully on the pavement, there is this deep-seated fear and uncertainty – or is it certainty! - that he is going to do some rash thing that it is better to honk just to be safe and let the other person know you are there! Even when there is no one around, it is just safe to honk so that no one jumps suddenly onto the road! Such has become the plight. Sigh.

So, just like how Lord Hanuman’s posture has been frozen to one of constant Namasthe, so is an Indian driver’s mentality frozen to honking as soon as the ignition is turned on!

Irony of the day

In order to save the environment in any small way possible,
I took to stairs while going from 2nd floor to gound floor,
Although I noticed the elevator being stationary on 2nd floor,
Almost temptingly welcoming me!

But as I started walking down,
Some one on ground floor pressed the elevator button
And the elevator almost mockingly made its way down empty
And reached before I did.

So much for saving the environment.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Thought for the day

[21] So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh;
[22] and the rib which the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man.
[23] Then the man said, "This at last is bone of my bones
and flesh of my flesh;
she shall be called Woman,
because she was taken out of Man."
[24] Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and cleaves to his wife, and they become one flesh.

- Genesis [2], The Bible

More you don’t know...

Literally speaking, higher the corporate ladder you climb, farther from the ground (realities) you are. The finer aspects of grass are lost and higher you go, the more you talk in air, making no real sense! I have noticed many senior managers speaking at length about a topic on which they actually have no real clue about but are very conversant with the choicest of words! I remember Sam giving a classic extempore of Board Members in a press conference where heavy duty adjectives and adverbs are used but the essence of the 5 minute speech is in effect null and void, which happens ever so often and is so true.

They even try to add a humorous touch and burst out laughing abruptly as if they made an intelligent remark or, if a joke is told by a junior member, they act as if they understood and guffaw but inwardly, I know that it was a laughter born out of nervousness, out of lack of knowledge. This lack of knowledge always gnaws at their consciousness.

Some truthful ones admit their weakness and learn, break their head and fill this void of knowledge. Rest go with the flow and keep the ball moving somehow, by being on the surface of the water, just able to breath and float and survive. Both are paid equally well. The former think that they are paid well to face situations where they have to talk crap without knowing anything but later break head to fill that void. The latter think that they are paid well just to face the aforesaid situations.

I might have already faced some such situations in the past and I know that I will be facing more such situations in my corporate future. I sure don’t want and don’t like that void of knowledge and I do hope I don’t get lazy and not break my head for things I don’t know. This reminds me of a previous related post.

Irrespective of breaking the head, the irony hit me:

More you don’t know, higher the pay.


Sunday, January 17, 2010

Thought for the day

I some times wonder if I use
USA as a means of escaping from India and
India as a means of escaping from USA.

Qs of the day

Quote of the day:

"When my mother resisted my decision to start working as an assistant in Bollywood at age 16, I told her I wasn't stopping my education. I was just beginning it. I was always very clear about what I wanted."

- Aamir Khan to a Times of India reporter

Question of the day:

How is it that some people are always very clear on what they want, and some are not?!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Quote of the day

To get something you never had,
You have to do something you never did.

- Seen on a cubicle board

Friday, January 08, 2010

Quote of the day

Life is very uncertain.
Always eat your dessert first!

- Seen on a cubicle board

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Quote of the day

Don’t go the way life takes you.
Take life the way you go.

- Seen on a cubicle board

Sunday, January 03, 2010


Heads leaning on one another...
Arms locked in one another...
On a bench in a park under the cool night air...
Under a canopy of side-by-side arching branches...
Greenery, shrubs and trees all around...
Orion filling the small visible sky...
Not a thought in the world...
Not a worry in the world...


Saturday, January 02, 2010

Happy New Year 2010!

For the first time since I can recollect,
I slept on the New Year’s Eve…

A sleep year ahead?!
Happy New Year!!