WriterThey say that one should listen to his heart’s calling – Something which really turns him on… something that can keep him awake all night without complaints!

I don’t know if my passion for writing qualifies for that… and also I may not be an authority in the English Language but I am someone who enjoys himself whenever he has a pen (or for that matter, a laptop with a working keyboard these days 🙂 ) at hand – Someone who has a passion for flavor in all his dissertations. This I have probably inherited from my Ma (Late Prof. Dr. Chandrika Mukherjee) who was a professor and PhD in English.

Given below are a few of the articles / blogs / essays / mere thoughts composed by Yours truly, ones that have been published here and at times in various other channels… Hope you like them.

Was watching the movie “That’s what I am” the other day, and somehow it feels so good whenever I repeat the affirmation after seeing the movie:

“I am a writer… That’s what I am!” 🙂

Aside  —  Posted: October 21, 2014 in Uncategorized

So what’s the first picture that comes to your mind when you hear these words? Most likely, The Joker (played by the legendary Heath Ledger) in the movie “The Dark Knight” who used to say these famous words. Lets park this thought for a little later…

Last to last week I was part of a very interesting Catalyst event in Chennai for my organisation (truly feel privileged to be part of an event which housed some of the best leaders in my organisation) – and the event had a fantastic amalgamation of fun-games coupled with thought-provoking speeches / presentations from the leadership. One thing that really struck my mind, and was again pointed out at the end of the day by one of my favorite leaders, was how this event was aimed, among other things, at how not to take ourselves too seriously as we go about our day-to-day IT lives.

Come to think of it – many of us wake up in the morning thinking about the serious day looming ahead (missing the sunrise and even the morning rays, for the most part), come to office with a grim face (hardly looking at the other person while wishing him/her good morning – unless its someone very pretty  🙂 ), spend the day at work very seriously (at least pretending to) with small pouts of fun thrown around (often worrying about petty things that we have to do once we reach home), and go home thinking about all the things we would need to do tomorrow.

Well, when I think back at some of the very nice triumphant moments of my life and also some of the very inspiring people I have been privileged to know over the years (people who reek of that awesomeness we are attracted to), I tend to notice one unique quality in most, if not all of them… that is the ability to take so-called “SERIOUS” situations lightly. That of course does not mean they are callous about it in any way – that would have surely led to their downfall – its something else… Call it faith in some higher power that everything is going to be okay, or maybe just the belief in themselves that they have the best intentions at heart and only the best things can and will happen to them (albeit through a set of stumbling blocks which others might take too seriously) – there is some power within them that they harness to work things out… both for themselves as well as the individuals / teams who are fortunate to be with them.

I was reading Echart Tolle’s bestselling book “The Power of Now” the other day, and among many other messages I could get from it, there was this essence of accepting the “now” the way it is and give the best to it – because within the set of {past, present, future}, the only element you have any control over is the #2. “the present”. So does it really make sense to take the “present” so seriously and throwing away the true power… I doubt if any of the Gods we all love (and claim) to believe in would ever be impressed with us doing so in any way…

Oops… Now this blog is getting too heavy and SERIOUS, isn’t it? 🙂 Nope, that’s not my intention here. Idea is to share some food for thought with all my fellow folks here. Let’s take a moment to think some of our favorite heroes or even superheroes. The reason we love to watch their movies so much is probably because we revel at their amazing calm demeanor and sense of humor retained even when faced with big time adversities. Talk about the James Bonds, Charlie’s Angels (keeping in mind the lady readers) of this world… Let’s not take this comparison too seriously and think “that’s them, here’s me… and we can’t really do that…” Who says except our minds crushed under the burdens of society and our well-meaning parents / teachers / mentors / friends (who may have been conditioned too seriously by another of the kind)? Point is that the day our so called heroes stop acting cool and act “seriously” like many of us do in our lives, I don’t think we’ll be lining up for the movie theaters or sports auditoriums or pay-per-views or bookstores anymore… Just imagine your favorite fictional character acting very SERIOUSLY like one of us, and you will realize what I am talking about!

I invite my readers to now think for a moment how pathetic many of our lives seem assuming someone is watching us all the time from a higher plane of existence (Sounds Seriously Spiritual, rite?  🙂 ). Maybe we can take cues from our favorite heroes / idols / inspirations and at least try to imbibe some of their cool and calm qualities so that we at least put up a better show for our imaginary audience up there. What say? Not possible… Maybe that would be the answer if we take this very SERIOUSly 🙂

Why so serious

Coming back to The Joker, some may take this very seriously and argue that he was caught at the end and banished in some way (thankfully it was Christopher Nolan and not some other lesser director that he spared the legendary Health Ledger and a legendary character a graceful “open” exit instead of SERIOUS consequences for a classic villain), but if you recall the movie, it is those philosophically rich fun gyan he gives throughout the movie that you will tend to recall rather than everyone else. Maybe that’s how light life is meant to be (of course we can choose to cut down on the brutality part of The Joker a bit, for the sake of humanity 🙂 )… Maybe that’s how sportingly we should handle lives like many of the mega-characters we recall and admire.

Let’s return to our lives, work and play… To close this blog, on a more SERIOUS note 🙂 , I would like to thank my organisation for bringing some very nice initiatives to make us take ourselves a little more lightly (including the event I was talking about earlier). I feel that there are many things in life and work that can be gamified in some way or the other – to make it lighter and not a burden. I had written about one such possibility in my earlier blog – “The Video Game Analogy” posted in the link:

http://wp.me/p3xv3w-1H

But over and above initiatives, I believe there is a certain amount of work we all can do within ourselves – which might just enable us to enjoy life a little more than we currently do, and also be a charming yet daring superhero to some audience (be it imaginary above or some people down here who look up to us every day). After all, as I read somewhere: “Be SINCERE, Not SERIOUS!”

Thank you ladies and gentlemen for reading this!  Have a great day…

It was late evening on one of the weekdays last week, and I was walking towards my study desk at home. Having come back home from work late, I was planning to catch up quickly with my Gmails and Twitters and all the other things I love to indulge in, given a bit of free time. However I was surprised to see that my laptop was already switched on and the screen was displaying the “Pause Screen” of some highly colorful video game. Soon I realized (in fact, was informed and politely ordered to stay away 🙂 ) that it was my partner hooked away with this new video game on Facebook called the “Royal Story”. I was subsequently explained in great detail that this game was some enhancement of a very popular game in Facebook called Farmville (you have either played it extensively and know a lot about it, or you might be like me who have been forcefully been introduced to and nudged by the name regularly through Farmville requests from FB friends to feed their cows, buy their hens and so on – Pardon me if I have got the actual requests incorrect since I have never got a chance / had the inclination to play this one myself).

royal story

Coming back to the evening in question, I resorted to taking a walk along the lake behind my residence (after being sadly coldshouldered away from my laptop @ home) and my mind drifted away to the thought of this “Royal Story” game as well as other popular games which have people hooked on to them so well. The game, from what I gathered in that very brief encounter, was one where the player (the prince or princess in this case, given that it is a “Royal Story”) starts off with a small piece of land and gradually gathers experience points (XP points, to be more cool about it!) when certain tasks are completed e.g. harvesting crops, milking cows, and so on. On achieving a designated amount of XP points, the player graduates to higher levels where he is given more land to manage, more challenging and exciting tasks and other superior assignments to complete. That evening, I found it extremely intriguing how people are such highly motivated to play these games and with every crossing level, the excitement seemed to increase even more. Suddenly, my thoughts took a queer tangent. Earlier that week, I was helping one of my junior friends with an MBA assignment where he had to talk about people programs within an organization and various initiatives to be planned for associates to keep them motivated and keep up the good work. A thought suddenly came to my mind on why so many people in an organization fall under the not-so-motivated bracket when it came to their work but at the same time get so charged up and involved when it comes to social video games. (By the way, this is not a reference to the person playing the video game in the previous paragraph, but an observation in general 🙂 ) I began to ponder whether it is just the fancy graphics, the fun and excitement quotient, the fact that it is not part of their forced job or is it something else? It was then when this strange thought came to my mind (You may call it a bit outlandish but let me pour it out here anyway).

As mentioned earlier – When you think of any game like those of Farmville, Royal Story and the like, they are essentially ones where the player starts with a small role in a small area with limited number of the resources and is given a set of tasks to be accomplished. The game is generally categorized into levels and the player advances to further levels as and when he/she achieves a specific milestone, say the creation of a cottage in his area. In due time, as the player progresses into higher levels, he/she is given more resources, a bigger area to manage, more plants to water, more animals to feed, people under him to supervise and so on. When you look at it, this is very much analogous to the corporate world where associates start small with limited responsibilities and relatively easier tasks and gradually moves up the levels to enhance his purview and jurisdiction. The question that struck my mind, however, was that if both these scenarios have the same underlying principle, how come individuals found more involvement in one while often looked at the other one as a duty at best and a burden at worst? I could immediately think of a number of reasons like limited resources in reality, fear of failure with the whole physical world looming around him and so on. But there was one major aspect that struck my mind, which is the crux of this blog and I would like to share with you so that you can provide your thoughts as well.

In a game like Royal Story or Farmville, there is an aspect of certainty involved in the realization of rewards. When Mr. X plays a game where he has to collect (say) 10 eggs to proceed to the next level of the game, he knows that when he completes the process of collecting the 10 eggs, he will be promoted to the next level and there is no way the computer will pop up a screen telling him “Dude, what you have done is not enough. You should try for 5 more eggs!” However in the real world it is often the case that neither are the goals S.M.A.R.T.ly (stealing the famed term used for the first time by George Doran in 1981, if I may) defined nor is there a guarantee that once the goal (if at all defined) is achieved, the “reality player” has a certainty of being rewarded. This applies in most cases and I think this is the root cause of all the lack of motivation on the part of the reality player as compared to that of a video game player on role play. Think about it – When we hire an interior designer to design our flat, we rarely provide her S.M.A.R.T goals to execute and achieve. We only tell her the flat should look “awesome” and then get angry after 2 months when what she has produced does not match up to our expectations (which were sadly not even set S.M.A.R.Tly in the first place). Similar situations occur frequently in multiple scenarios – be it when mindshare-hungry companies engage ad agencies to achieve their media planning, or when insurance sales employees are asked to turn the world around to get business, or when clients hire IT resources to create their software and so on. In most of these occasions, the reality player is just doing his job (with a bored face and a squeamish stomach) without the real motivational punch.

game 2

Now, I know that there are hundreds of constraints to implement the same gaming model in the real world, I myself can think of a handful right away, based on my experience thus far (I am sure most of you can find even more good reasons). However, the entire point of contention of writing this blog is to take a moment and think if we could at least try to improvise the reward and progression mechanism in a real-world organizational (or for that matter, any other) setup in such a way that people are assured of a certain reward on completion of a certain milestone, it would really improve, in my opinion, the involvement and motivation level of the worker (I prefer to call him or her the player here!). And maybe this would make him perform in more superior manner than ever and reap lots of benefits for the organization / ecosystem (just like the individual player in the “Royal Story” ends up creating wonderful palace grounds and a kingdom in due course). And maybe, just maybe – they will raise all bars of performance and be happily engaged as they move up the levels. Just a passing evening thought which I wanted to share with you, ladies and gentlemen… 🙂 Thanks for reading!

Sometimes things happen in your life with perfect synchronicity and when you look at it later, it seems to you that: “Well, this was what was supposed to happen in the first place!”
Last evening coming back from office, I had a small plan to sit with a couple of childhood friends for a few drinks or so. It is one of the “group therapy” sessions which I enjoy the most in life. Because with childhood friends, you can open out your heart like nowhere else, knowing that growing up together (they having actually seen you through thick and thin) will never ever judge you in any way. So I was kind of looking ahead to the evening.

Strangely things did not work out and it was upon me how I would wish to utilize the available time. With my wife not around, I decided to take an evening walk. This is something I always used to cherish, especially during my B-School days in Ghaziabad (where I used to make my famous trips to a distant fruit juice stall, but thats another story for another time). I was walking along a lonely and dark slip road behind the big lake near my residence when suddenly saw lots of dust start blowing with a whiff of cold air brushing past my body, feeling extremely pleasant on a hot April evening in Kolkata. As things turned out, it was the prelude to the first thunderstorm this summer. I stood in awe beside the lake as I saw the water waves rippling turbulently with the CCRAZY wind blowing the tree leaves and branches into a frenzy. The visual held me in awe for many moments as I stood there enjoying the cold drops of rain falling on my body (which had only minimal summer clothes on it). I realized all of a sudden that no matter how much I loved the company of my friends and a good drink together (or for that matter the company of my partner as we saw a movie together), there are few things in life that compare with this amazing bliss of solitude right in the lap of nature. Sometimes things indeed do not work out for a reason. I will probably resume with my friends or my wife today evening, and have a good time like I always do… But the beautiful feeling I got last evening will remain as an exclamation point in life. Another beautiful moment that took my breath away!

P.S. I tried to click the moment on my smartphone, but was unsuccessful in the darkness. I guess God and The Universe does not want these beautiful moments to be shared on Facebook, but would like to make interested people experience it LIVE, at the right place at the right time!

P.S. You can see below a picture of the thunder lighted sky around 10 PM at night I could capture on my way back from the lake (of very poor quality unfortunately) because (A) My phone was getting wet in the rain (B) There was thunder and lightning striking all around!

To Hell and Back

Posted: January 7, 2010 in satyam, scam

“No bombs were dropped, no guns fired, armies were not sent to combat, capture or imprison – A mere confession made 50000 lives and their families sleepless, anxious and brought them to street”
– A former Satyam employee (quoted from Deccan Chronicle)

Today is 7th January, 2010 – the 1st Anniversary of the Satyam Saga, one that I was personally a part of and would remember for the rest of my life!

Actually, can’t believe that a whole year has passed and each one us who were affected seem to have moved on with our lives in some way or the other, despite the devastation. I still remember that day when at around 11 AM in the morning, we heard the news that our chairman, Ramalinga Raju, has confessed of a fraud – one whose magnitude was not known at that point of time, but still we had that sick, dampening feeling that it would change each and everyone of our lives forever. In fact, I personally thought it was a rumor when I heard of it – Satyam was facing brickbats from all quarters at that point of time especially after the failed Maytas Acquisition attempt in December 2008, so I thought this would be another rumor… but it wasn’t!

The hapless faces around me are still clear in my memory – the feeling of fear, helplessness, betrayal for all the good work so many of us had done… yet defiance not to be put down – the true mark of a Satyamite! I had never received so many calls in a span of 2 days in all my life: People not knowing what to say, how to console me… people wondering what I was doing in office since the media had almost proclaimed that the company was already shut down.

It is these helpless and completely uncertain moments in life when you realize something – nothing is permanent, no us, not our jobs, nothing… Two months ago, a guy amongst us might have been thinking of buying a new laptop – but today he would think twice before purchasing a new headphone – Because none of us knew when and where our next paychecks would come from.

What was important was that most of us chose to fight on… To continue to deliver value to our clients in spite of all odds, to see the company through. Survival was not an option for us, it was mandatory. But whatever we did to save the company, whatever the government did to bail us out, whatever the IT ecosystem did to prevent the company from dying – we always seemed to be fighting a lost war. I saw so many marriages getting broken down – People had lost faith on Satyam, and for some unknown reason, lost faith on the Satyamite.
It is unfortunate that we live in a society which only gives you credit when thinks are hunky dory. I wish someone would have come and told me – “Dude, give it a fight, stick on with Satyam and see it through”. All I could hear from people was whether I was getting good offers in the bad economy. Yes, they cared about me… but somehow Satyam as a company, even if it cheated the world thanks to the perpetrators, got cheated by the world who failed to sympathize with it!

Whatever happened after that is public knowledge… The government quick remedy steps, the Mahindra takeover and a lot of unpleasantaries for employees after that. You’ll hear Hari T, the Chief People Officer or whatever, of Mahindra Satyam these days quoting in newspaper columns that Satyam has changed its status from R.I.P (Recovery in Progress) to R.A.P (Recovered and Progressing)… but a few days back when I stepped into the Satyam Bangalore Campus at Electronic City to submit my resignation, I was appalled at the lifelessness there – You could hardly see any associates at lunch time… Same here in Chennai as well where they have closed down 5-6 offices. The dwindling numbers say it all – Satyam is no more. Yes, it has a new identity and has arguably recovered and is progressing… but the spirit seems to have vanished!

That was the story of last year, which most Satyamites would love to forget… but somehow I don’t! The reason I wanted to write this entry is because I want to introspect what we have taken away from this episode. Yes, we may have lost much in monetary as well as professional terms – but I think each one of us have gained character. We know what is the worth of being employed… and today when I look at people coming for interviews or running around with placement consultants, I feel a small empathy for them… and hope that they make it – for them, for their families, for their future! Such is the takeaway from this Satyam episode and I am glad that all this happened; Else I, for one, would have remained 50% more snobbish and 50% less humble than what I am today.

"Change" in Bengal

Posted: September 18, 2009 in Uncategorized

Recently, I was in my hometown – Kolkata, for a short 4 day trip. Like many of my friends, I had never been too much interested in the political scenario that exists in Bengal. The dominance of the Left front over the last few decades never impressed me at all, but neither did it create any heartburn – because it really never seemed to matter to me. However, a small incident during my visit to Kolkata last week left me thinking a bit… So let me share it here.

I was supposed to meet some of my friends at City Centre and I was standing near Bangur for a bus to Ultadanga. It was early evening and I had to keep waiting for a while since almost one-third private vehicles in Kolkata were off the road due to some Supreme Court ruling that was passed for banning old, polluting vehicles (And believe me, more than one-thirds of t

he entire vehicle strength in Kolkata fall into this category!)

I was waiting for my ‘DN 8’ bus when suddenly I sensed an old man standing beside me at the bus stop. He was a frail person and was standing there with effort using a stick – a typical picture of one of those many old gentlemen in Bengal who are left to fight out life themselves with their children having left them on growing up (He later told me he was 83). He requested me to tell him whenever a ‘223’ route  bus comes in as he had to go to Golpark. Since I still had enough time before my friends would turn up at City Centre, I decided to let go of one my ‘DN 8’ buses to help the person out.

We kept waiting for a while… but there was no ‘223’ in sight. Then the old gentleman started talking. It suddenly seemed to dawn on him that it was because of the Supreme Court ruling that the CPIM government was forced to take the buses off the road – something they would have never done otherwise keeping the huge vote-bank of the bus operators in mind. He smirked at the indifference shown by one of the CPIM bosses the other day when asked by reporters that so many buses off the road are creating lots of discomfort to the general Kolkata people who commuted using public transport. When confronted with such questions from reported, the minister had replied with a callous “Is that so?”… While going on with his reflections and perspectives of the political scenario in West Bengal, suddenly the old gentleman grabbed my hand and exclaimed: “Ebar ekta poriborton antei hobe” (“A change has to come now”)! He continued that we can always elect back the Marxists after 5 years if the other party failed to perform, but a change for once was definitely due.  At the end of our conversation (which was more of a monologue in which I chipped in occasionally with a nod of agreement or two), he lamented “Ami to ar beshi din thakbo na… Dekho jodi tomra ekbar ekta poriborton ante paro kina” (“I won’t live for too long… But see if you can someday bring some change or not”).

No ‘223’ route bus came in that evening thanks to the ban – and I helped the old gentleman into an alternate bus. Soon I reached City Centre and was engrossed in fun times with my friends… But the thoughts of the old gentleman came back to me again late that night. Somehow then innate passion in whatever he said was haunting me. I did not know how to bring about the change he was talking about, I did not know how to do justice to this frail old gentleman’s thoughts. So I decided to write this blog.

I don’t harbor either leftist or rightist views when it comes to politics… and don’t want to! But maybe a change is indeed due in Bengal. Whatever we have there right now is not democracy – Its something else!

Barrack Obama, in one of his pre-election campaign speeches delivered an awesome punch-line, which was something like this:

“History says that when the country is going down the drain, Change does come FROM Washington… Change comes TO Washington”
And going by the current situation and discontent among the people of Bengal, a similar line may be delivered by replacing Washington by Writers Building, Kolkata as well! 

“Well Jo’anna she runs a company
She runs it in India and around the world
She makes a few of her people happy, oh
She don’t care about the rest at all
She’s got a system they call ‘Virtual Pool’
It keeps an employee in a subjection
But maybe pressure can make Jo’anna see
How everybody could a live as one”

I still remember hearing the song “Gimme hope, Joanna” while Eddy Grant was performing live at the IPL Closing Ceremony extravaganza a few weeks back, in South Africa. There was something about the song that struck a chord in my heart – maybe the peppy beats, maybe the compelling lyrics or maybe simply the timeless appeal against the apartheid that has haunted South Africa for so many years. Little did I know that this song would make so much sense to me and the context of my life, just a few weeks down the line!

I work for a company which was recently involved in the biggest corporate fraud in India, and for that matter, one of the biggest scams the world has ever witnessed. Thanks to a handful of promoters and his close aides, the entire bunch of dedicated and talented employees faced the brunch of uncertainty and panic over the last 6 months. All of this is public knowledge and I won’t go into the details here in this article. We all saw a ray of hope in April as we inducted in a ‘strategic investor’ (as they love to call it) into the system. We thought things were looking up, we thought the months of tenacity, the fighting spirit shown by each and every associate of our once-esteemed organization would finally pay off… and we would finally get back into the league to gain all our lost pride. Lets call this ‘strategic investor’ or simply the new buyer of our firm as ‘Joanna’.

Soon after the honeymoon period where we were welcomed by Joanna into the new system, people began questioning Joanna’s motives. Yes, her visions were ambitious – She wanted to become the “No. 1 IT company in India” in some years from now… but at what expense was the question. People in the company soon began to realize that it was probably at their expense. We could sense a ‘buyer mentality’ in whatever Joanna was doing, in most of her communications and in many of her decisions. It was something like “I have done you a huge favor by buying your company… and I don’t listen to you; I don’t want to understand your system… All I want is my system to be imposed on you”. Somehow it could be sensed that the intention was to push hard right from the word “Go” and an apparent unwillingness on the part of Joanna to listen to us.

Joanna somewhat wanted to “keep a few people happy without caring about the rest at all”… Lightning struck one and all in our company as Joanna announced that there will be a ‘Virtual Pool Program (VPP)’ in order to do away (for the time being) of the excess staff in our organization. I could see the fear in the faces of my fellow colleagues as each tried to speculate his / her chances of being part of this dreaded Virtual Pool. Joanna finally announced the list on Friday, the 12th of June which asked the N number of people put on the Virtual Pool to stop coming to office from June 19th and be in the pool for the next 4-6 months with a whole set of ambiguous clauses defined in the policy which makes everyone doubt if there is any intention whatsoever of absorbing people back from the pool.

“She’s got supporters in high up places
Who turn their heads to the city sun
Jo’anna give them the fancy money
Oh to tempt anyone who’d come
She even knows how to swing opinion
In every magazine and the journals
For every bad move that this Jo’anna makes
They got a good explanation”

The entire VPP exercise was done in the most sugar-coated way you could ever think of. Joanna managed the media extremely well (“She knows how to swing opinion in every magazine and the journals”) – There was hardly any TV coverage of the 10000s of employees in an organization being virtually laid off from the system. Some papers where there was mention of the thing, worded things in such a manner that it seemed to be a benevolent act of some large-hearted saint.

Lets get one thing perfectly clear at this juncture… I fully understand the motive of Joanna and why she had to do this. There was too much excess staff in our organization and someone had to take the cut at some point of time. My concern is the highly insensitive way in which Joanna went about the entire exercise. First of all, ever since the list of 10000 odd people came out, people have been racking their brains on how Joanna arrived at such a list… and they have not figured out any rhyme and reason on how things were done! In IT, we have this concept called billability – A billable associate is one who is paid by the client on a per hour basis and thus earning direct revenue for the company. And a non-billable resource is one who is either not in a project currently and thus not receiving any direct payment from the customer (i.e. on the ‘Bench’ as per IT lingo) or someone else who has a support function in the organization e.g. HR, Sales, Presales, etc. It seems that Joanna only considers currently billable resources as ones valuable to her and she “doesn’t care about the rest at all”. There are people who have been billed for years and years who find themselves in the Virtual Pool (at a nominal pay and negligible benefits) just because he was not being billed in the last two months. How unfair of Joanna! Is it lack of business insight or a short-sighted vision to cut costs at any cost, without considering what might happen in the future.

“She doesn’t care if the fun and games she play
Is dang’rous to ev’ryone”

Layoffs invariably occur in the IT, or for that matter, any other industry… and a certain amount can be accepted. But you can put people down on the basis of non-performance – not on whether he is being currently billed or not. I see around me today and see so many units/departments of our company on the verge of closure just because its entire key people have been placed into the virtual pool. That’s what happens when you judge people on such superficial parameters like billing. As an insider I can tell you, that today the organization is in a mess thanks to Joanna’s immature steps and policies. The last 6 months were real hard work for us – I could see people passionate about rebuilding the organization after the multi-crore scam; people who stood as “One”; people who rejected lucrative job offers from poaching IT firms; people who worked their asses out – just to get the organization back into shape! Look at all these passionate people today – Most of them are sitting in the virtual pool! Kudos to you, Joanna – You know how to run a company!

Today, Joanna very clearly makes people in the Virtual Pool feel unwanted. She has removed several of their basic fundamental rights as employees. They have restricted rights to information access. They have crippled rights to communication – Their mailboxes can’t send mails over a minimal threshold limit! They don’t have internet access during their last days in office. They are not wanted anymore. Joanna wants them to go away. Joanna thinks she can well without all of them. Joanna even refuses to acknowledge / wish if one of those people in the Virtual Pool has his/her birthday. He / She is not important to Joanna anymore – He / She has been dumped by Joanna!

Today I look around me and see the previously passionate and eternally highly-talented people wanting to leave Joanna’s company – Its not their company anymore; It now belongs to Joanna and she will run it the way she wants. The IT industry is witnessing the first signs of revival – the tide is turning… But Joanna is blind. She is worried about herself, how she wants things to be. Is it lack of Joanna’s ability to run a big enterprise, almost double the size of herself? Does she have the business insight to run such a company? She doesn’t really seem competent enough – Especially if you look at her decisions and the haste approach over the past few months… And you start wondering how Joanna can ever take this enterprise to the height she is talking about! Would the people Joanna is dumping ever come back? After all that is happening, would anyone jump into the pool of uncertainty by joining Joanna’s company? The IT industry thrives on acquiring and keeping good talent. Joanna has failed miserably in keeping them and I wonder if she would be any good acquiring new talent as well.
“Even the preacher who works for Jesus
The Archbishop who’s a peaceful man
Together say that the freedom fighters
Will overcome the very strong
I wanna know if you’re blind Jo’anna
If you wanna hear the sound of drums
Can’t you see that the tide is turning
Oh don’t make me wait till the morning come”
I appeal to Joanna not to be blind… She thinks she knows it all – But this is not the way to do it. It’s the people who make or break a company – and if you don’t have good people, you are on your way down to the depths of hell. Today, I see our company, the one we prided in, as a sinking ship… It might look somewhat rosy from the outside but I personally know how things are happening inside. I plead to Joanna to open up to us, to listen to our point of view… to create synergy. We could have done it together… We could have given all the Infys and TCSs and Wipros of this world a run for their money, but trust me, Joanna, you can’t do that by walking over people. Maybe one day you will realize your mistakes… Maybe one day you’ll give all of us hope – and take our beloved company to its acme… Please give us that hope before the morning come.
“Gimme hope, Jo’anna
Hope, Jo’anna
Gimme hope, Jo’anna
Fore the morning come
Gimme hope, Jo’anna
Hope, Jo’anna
Hope before the morning come”