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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Leadership vacuum

The "vision vacuum" that we witness in the upper echelons of the bureaucratic setup in the great organization that I work for amazes and also saddens me no end. Even a petty businessman has a vision, and yet this largest single commercial organization of the nation drifts along without a vision or a sense of direction. Lack of vision and direction has now emerged as the unique trait of this organization that once was referred to by prefixing "great" to its name. The mediocre management at all levels of this monolith has also distinguished itself almost always by its penchant for the routine and jarring reaction to symptoms. Blaming the organization and its constituents for one's own failures or frustrations has also become a common trait of all those who occupy the hot seats, generally undeservingly.

It was almost always like that with very few exceptions of course. Yet only one exception stands out even decades later and that is Ravindra who is revered and missed even today by many of those who yearn to pull the organization out of the abyss it finds itself in. He is perhaps the only top guy I have ever known whose inner radiance glowed on his exterior self. A top guy whom one looked forward to interacting with and who alone could provide the leadership and vision that one misses badly in the railways of today.

Times change and with that the quality of men also change. The materialistic world of today where occupying a chair has become a goal, not for doing something for the organization or the nation, but for the power, perks, glamour and glory that goes with it has revolutionized, not for better but for worse the way we bureaucrats of India work.

And that leads me to wonder, when shall we hit the bottom?

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