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Saturday, July 23, 2016

Common fallacies while serving the nation

Look around within the working environment and one shall find many who never really started or have given up at the slightest pretext. It is such attitude that is indeed the biggest drag in the forward march of organizations and also the nation.

The staff is bad : How common and how unfortunate is the oft heard rant of the senior blokes that if they had better men with them, they would have delivered. I am good and they are bad, I am honest and the rest are not, I am committed and others are not and more often than not – no one else is bothered about the organization. Sadly these are words uttered by the mediocres who aspire for positions, get them and yet never become worthy of them. Over thirty five years of service has convinced me that the root cause behind non deliverance is inadequate bureaucratic leadership.

There is no support : If I had enough support I would have done it. Unfortunately this penchant of relying heavily on support from the superiors has been carried to a ridiculous extent by almost all and sundry. The guy who seeks support from those above him actually rarely supports those who look upto him. It is almost akin to the hostel experience – I was ragged so I will rag, I was not looked after so why should I and so on and so forth. The go-getters however go ahead and do it nevertheless.

People are corrupt – Very often we paint with one black brush those who we work for and also work with. The widespread extent of corruption is indeed undenied yet the only way one can help clean this rut is neither by complaining nor castigating others but by being a crusader for the cause and at the same time carrying an unwavering focus on the objective to be achieved.

Inadequate funds – The failure to realize that money is the least of the issues unfortunately never dawns on most of us who start their careers with and also end up with almost a regular banter about inadequacy of funds, for want of which they believe they have been failing to deliver. Look around and witness the creation of empires literally from scratch by budding entrepreneurs of the yesteryears and even today. They never cribbed and in the process created wealth. That initiative is the first step to generate wealth rarely gets appreciated.

The boss is bad : This is rarely true and but not as often as it is made out to be. The presence of a few rotten apples cannot be wished away yet the realization that if one is a good boss, he also gets one, rarely gets appreciated.

Life is not fair : Having been treated in an unfair manner remains the biggest grouse of almost all blokes thronging the environment. It however rarely matters to them whether they have been fair or not in their dealing with all those who fall within their sphere of influence. And fairness after all is a matter of perception, often perceived wrongly.  

The eternal pessimist : And one often bumps into many of them. That being fiercely optimist is often the only way to turnaround a really bad situation is often never believed and therefore rarely practiced. Like optimism builds itself many times over and in the process converts an impossible scenario into a possible one, pessimism attracts negativity at a much faster rate and often converts an already won battle into a lost one.

And lastly the misplaced notion that a position is merely for self-perpetuation and not a means to achieve an objective, a noble one at that, is so widespread that it is not at all funny. Almost everyone aspires for top slots, but unfortunately only for the power and pelf that goes with it, and the transient nature of these gains is appreciated only when they end, as all good times do but by then it is too late. Performing what the position expects from the incumbent is the only thing that has the power to give a lasting experience.


Sunday, July 17, 2016

Being Human

Air India, the national carrier of India is indeed on the way to emerge as the nation’s pride in days to come.

I always believed in two things – the inherent strength of the indian public sector and the inefficacy of what we look upon (or down) as the top management of these corporations. A misplaced belief in not trusting anyone other than the self is indeed the crucial factor behind the demise of many such jewels in the lap of the nation. And not knowing or not even attempting to know the tremendous latent power that human beings possess lies at the core. It is in this dismal scenario which has lasted over almost seven decades that one looks at the present national leadership as the brightest ray of hope ever to have been showered on the nation. And we have to be patient for it takes time to stem the decades of rot. Unfortunately while we seek patience for ourselves from others one does not display even a streak of it insofar as expectations from others are concerned. This realization gives me hope both for the national carrier as well as the nation. Great times are unfolding at the pace they can and should.

That Air Indians, even the commonest of them silently bore the blunt of being unfairly blamed for the debacle of the airline convinces me of their infinite resilience besides making me hopeful for the future. The plunge of the national carrier is indeed the handiwork of fate and individuals other than the rank and file, a plain fact left unrealized so far. And therefore my efforts to place facts on the table for I believe that acceptance of the ground realities is indeed the first step in the path to revival.

My very recent three day visit to the commercial capital of the country was a satisfying one. Interactions with the staff as well as the agents who give us business in both the passenger and cargo segments were fruitful and satisfying. That there are no absolute guarantees in commercial scenarios, and therefore taking risks rather that twiddling our thumbs for fear of the unknown or the vigilance is the only course of action open to us.

And the genuine emotional connect with the men that invariably brings out the best in them has no parallel. Emotions therefore came to the surface when the appointment letter was being handed over to the spouse of a deceased engineer. Even meeting hordes of staff who in me saw a faint row of hope for the beleaguered carrier are moments beset with emotions and strengthens the thought of laying down everything at the altar of humanity. What better feeling than to see the smiles on the faces of those one feels responsible for.

My earlier stints especially at the Madhya Pradesh Tourism, ITDC and Delhi division had all been emotionally charged moments. After all when one deals with human beings, it is all about happy moments, feelings for others and concern for humanity at large. And all this reinforced in me a belief that despite what the experts say, it is the men who make or mar an organization or the nation, it is the men who can create or destroy wealth and who can usher in happiness or gloom. Concern for the men therefore is the core issue, everything else thereafter merely falls in place.

Human nature is indeed the most complicated of sciences. While we fully well know what makes us happy or what we desire from others, we have been miserably failing in applying the same yardsticks when we deal with others. My only hope lies in my men finding the courage to be good to others and devoting their lives for the common good.