Some people claim that they drive themselves by values and for some its there understanding, but the fact is that most of them don’t really understand values to its correct meaning. When I ask them about Indian value system they find it difficult and try to escape the situation. Once I had a discussion with an infosys guy while roaming around in a park in Bangalore on a weekend. I asked him, what do you mean by driven by values? His immediate reply was I could not get you properly, can you please explain it? Then I asked have you ever noticed your company punch line? Your company punch line shows “powered by intellect, driven by values”. He replied immediately, oh yeah you are talking about that. Then he tried to change the topic moving to some other discussion. I allowed him to do that. Again after some time when I found that the person is now comfortable talking to me, I came back to the original topic our discussion.

At that point of time the person felt miserable and when he found there is no way to escape, he started talking on that. He explained it correctly to some extent according to my perception only the first part of it that is “powered by intellect”. He had no clue about “driven by values”. Then he told I don’t remember that now, it must have some mention in our company website somewhere. I will check and tell you. Then I told him don’t worry it’s not a big issue, visit us some time we will have more discussion. I finished our discussion with a thank you note and I gave him my company business card before leaving that place.

He was not the wrong person whom I had interaction with. Let’s analyze and understand the problem here if any. What he explained was his understanding. Sometime we neglect minute details about something in our analysis as we fell that is less important for us and we have many big issues in life to confront with. This kind of negligence can create humiliating situation for us in every sphere of life. In this particular case the person must have a feeling in him that he could not represent his company well when it was most needed. Should I blame infosys management for what there employees know and what they not about there company? No, I can’t, because I don’t know there history. Is there any flaw in there administration? I can’t say. We can’t blame any management if there employees fail to meet the minimum required expectation. For a single person I can’t blame the entire management. Yes it’s required to find out the root cause and take the corrective action to prevent further damage.

It’s not enough to create big banners and generate eye catching punch lines for advertisement. What if we don’t understand that? Yes with this it is possible to bring more recognition outside and do a good business what we usually look out for. But we can never build a clean society unless we understand values to its correct meaning. We need to inculcate that into practice in our personal lives. I can say that we understand values and we follow that in practice too. So I feel like we are the best in this area where people understand and realize the importance of value system rather than claiming it which is more important according to my understanding.

Is our value system extinct under western influence or just in danger like the tiger species? If it’s true can we revive our old value system? What can we do about that? I have not provided any solution to any problem here. We need to come up with our own problem and solution and also its desired to share that with others for better understanding. These are all still open for discussion for everybody to find more knowledge in this area.

This writing is not intended to hurt anybody or their image as a whole but to bring the reality into picture. I urge the readers not to take it personally if they came across such a situation in their life ever. Let’s avoid all kind of controversy and view things as learning opportunities. I have not mentioned any name here for that reason. I will be happy if they can provide me with their valuable comments for better understanding and better writing.Let me know if you find this content objectionable and if so why? Do share with me if you have similar experiences. I may add something to it later after I find your comments.


* First published at http://writersatchatterati.blogspot.in/ on Thursday, 14 February 2008


The demon of terrorism & violence is expanding its wings very fast. Many countries around the globe are facing its heat today in some form or the other. Even powerful countries like US are no exception. And their target is innocent people. Humanity and human values are at its all time low. Even they don’t spare one year old kids. Why can’t we help ourselves in this situation rather than being a spectator and often eye witness at times? We see mass murder in the name of cast and religion. Can you ask the people who cause such acts, whom we refer as terrorists? Who are they? As better I know, they are also human beings. Terrorism is the enemy of humanity and the entire human race, not the terrorists. Can we call it a holy war killing innocent people in large numbers? There is no place for violence in any religion. God gas never created any distinction among human beings. It is we people who are responsible for this discrimination. This way we are not killing human beings but humanity as a whole. We can have a great debate on this to find out its root cause and its associated factors. I will not delve deep into it. Let’s analyze its significance in the context of our topic i.e., the importance of moral and value based education. I read somewhere that “morality is the domain of the hypocrites” written by a very well known columnist. I don’t want to name the person just to avoid controversy and i am also not blaming anybody for such contents. He is a very honorable person and a renowned writer. Only thing i can say about him from the contents of his script that he might not have understood morality in its true sense and might be lacking the requisite value based education.

We (not I) realize day by day that there is no place for good people in politics. They play dirty politics blaming each other. The only aim for them is to reach the top position someway and have absolute control and authority over others. Forget about right or wrong. Somewhere I read “everything is fair in love and war”. I’d like to add politics here. They are not worried at all even if they lose their values and conscience here. Times Of India is campaigning for “lead India” and not worried at all for its contents published in Bangalore times. I have not seen such contents in any other supplements in other leading Indian dailies. Apart from Bangalore times, I have not seen such contents from times of India in our native place. Are they playing politics with us? What I observe here is they feel such content are ok in Bangalore and not quite acceptable to people in Bhubaneswar where they are very traditional. Our young people among whom we are planning to find our future leaders are kept in darkness. The same person who has never seen such contents published in TOI, Bhubaneswar finds it shocking to see those in Bangalore. Are we looking for a global culture acceptable to everybody where all will feel safe and protected or a city based culture? The only reason I find here is to gain cheap popularity as soon as possible and be the market leader and of course to make money in that process. They forget their social responsibility in this process. I can compare media people with politicians here in this context though they do not rule us directly. But they affect a larger section of the society by their writings. They have the biggest social responsibility. Let’s ask ourselves, how are we responsible for this transition? We are also responsible when we do not raise our voice and watch quietly something going wrong as if it will not affect us and its not our business. Is it my business to generate social awareness among people and think about you? Why? Am i a fool? Am I getting any monetary benefit out of it, then why am I doing all this?

Social work is nothing more than foolishness. Degradation in human values in politics is not at all good for our country men and to the human race as a whole. Promises are like fireworks now days. They do exist at one moment and nonexistent at some other like fire crackers after they explode, only to cause smoke and sound that gives us momentary pleasure but harmful in long run. Increasing incidence of dowry deaths are like epidemic these days that we read and see in newspaper daily. We find this in our educated society among highly educated people some of whom are in top positions. Forget about illiterate village people. Is it not a misfortune for our society in this twenty first century?

Right education sharpens our attitude and behavior and helps us attain higher goals of life. It disciplines our life and gives us correct living standards rather than our standard of living. Because its very much important to live with correct standards and not to find our standard of living comparing to that of people around us in terms of money and their possessions. Unfortunately, when I see young people today, I don’t feel like they have received the right education. Is it because of our system? We can’t blame people of our young generation for this tragedy. From where do they learn? It’s from their elders, the media and their surrounding environment. Result of this kind of education among young people we see in the form of smoking, drinking, kidnapping, rape to name a few. We observe increasing incidence of physical torture to junior students from their peers in the name of ragging. Is it not a sign of degradation in moral values in our education system?

Now students want to pass their exams anyway with shortcuts. They do not think copying as a form cheating anymore. Even parents encourage them in this process. They want their children to find a place in some good college/university that can provide him a good placement somewhere after the completion of their education. That became the sole purpose and basis for education today. Forget about values and career building which was once the purpose behind any education. Can this help us attain our goals and generate moral values among our people if we fail to impart the right education? No way. This will only show them a wrong direction and they will be more and more vulnerable to dangers and challenges coming their way. They can’t face it gracefully and confidently. I don’t believe in degrees and institutes anymore. I had a conversation with one of my professors at IIM, Calcutta two months back. He told me after this discussion now i feel like you people are studying hard to learn things unlike what i find here among regular PGDM students. I could not understand anything at first and was a little curious to know more. When enquired, he told students here are more concerned about finding a good placement rather than learning a subject well. Obviously they will get good placements from here but they don’t show much interest in learning and building a career that they can get from us. We are well known worldwide only because of our faculty and the quality of education we impart to students. But students these days seem to have different career plans and choices rather than gaining knowledge. The situation was not like this some fifteen years back.

In a time like some of us feel that strong moral and value based education is the only solution to all such problems. It’s up to you to analyze the truth behind this statement. When the true purpose behind any education is character building and personality development, we someway misinterpreted it and are not in the right track. How to pass examination with good numbers became the purpose behind education now. Right education has to be imparted at school level. When we teach humanity and human values to children at school level, it can have a long lasting effect. If we fight among ourselves like the Kauravas of Mahabharata epic instead of trying to find a solution, no body can prevent our human race from extinction.

* First published at http://writersatchatterati.blogspot.in/ on Monday, 24 September 2007

India’s Choice At Oscars : “Eklavya -The Royal Guard”

India’s nomination to OSCARs this year has been in controversy now. I have not analyzed well what others say about it. I don’t know what is the cause of concern for others in this movie. Now its entry has been challenged in Bombay High Court. As I heard from others it’s because of a legal battle between two rival producers, Vidhu Vinod Chopra for “Eklavya” and Bhavna Talwar for Dharm. I don’t know what is the basis of selection. If its only by votes then as per the claim of the producer of Dharm, her film was not selected because the 11-man jury appointed by the Film Federation of India included Sudhir Mishra and Jagdish Sharma, members well known to “Eklavya” producer Vidhu Vinod Chopra. She feels that since certain members of the jury were personally known to ‘Eklavya”s producer, this direct nexus could have led to a bias. “Eklavya” won the selection over “Dharm” on a six to five final vote. Vidhu Vinod Chopra said that he had no idea of the composition of the jury until after its selection had been made.

Here I am going to write about the movie and its subject as I view it and my cause of concern. I had watched that movie last year after its release in India. Before I went to watch that movie I had no idea about the subject and its content. I was quite impressed by the name of the movie as I had some knowledge on Elavya, the original disciple of guru Drona of Mahabharata from our Hindu mythology. Other motivational factor to watch that movie for me was the big banners and posters of that movie showcasing Amitabh Bachhan as Eklavya – my hot favorite actor of all time. Eklavya is in controversy over its selection for Oscars. I don’t know how it got selected as a nomination for Oscars. Let me write you something about the movie. The very beginning of that movie was quite fascinating depicting picturesque valleys and palaces of ancient Indian ethos which are quite attractive. It’s a a widely panned royal epic set against the sumptuous backdrop of a desert palace. It talks about Guru Drona and his disciple Eklavya at the beginning. We generally take interest in something that fascinates us. I found a full drama after initial few minutes of the movie and no way connected to Eklavya as the story progresses. I don’t find any value attached to the movie.

Let’s analyze the selection process as I visualize it. Should we select something because we do not have any other choice? Is it because of some bias? Should a movie for Oscars need to have a very good concept and a strong message? Unfortunately no body is talking about the values behind the movie, its lead character, what message it gives to the indian viewers and the world at large. Vidhu Vinod Chopra told that it did a very good business at overseas and was quite well acclaimed by the westerners.

It has a very strong and wrong message in it at the end. The message is “Eklavya was wrong in his approach”. If we talk only about the movie and its character, the message could be acceptable to some of the viewers but they have enough ground for controversy by telling the story of Eklavya of the epic Mahabharata. The problem arises when we compare that Eklavya with the character in the movie. The comparison now is quite natural as the viewers have been reminded of the story at the beginning of the movie.

Let’s look at it in a different angle now. Eklavya is still considered an idol among our student community which is a symbol of sacrifice and which depicts the strong devotion of a disciple to his master. He had shown us greatest form of sacrifice by donating his thumb to guru Drona. He was a master archer of his time and no body had the ability to defeat him. Eklavya was not a fool. He knew that by donating his right hand thumb, he can never practice archery. If you say that he had no idea of his master’s treachery and why he was deceiving him, then you are wrong. He had a very good knowledge of Arjuna and his relationship with Drona. Knowing everything, he sacrificed himself just to please his master who was not teaching him directly. He learnt the trade just by watching guru Drona while he was teaching Arjuna. I’d say it’s the greatest form of sacrifice. How can we compare him with a highly dramatized movie character?

When we send a message like “Eklavya was wrong”, it directly points to the person in our epic Mahabhatrata. If the only aim of the movie maker is to create a movie to do a good business, what is the need to use the name of a noble person like Eklavya? Can we retain our culture anymore if we accept the message from that movie? We should think and analyze the subject matter well before making any movie when we target a large number of viewers. I can’t express how much damage that movie caused to our value system. Consequences are many. We can easily find out the rising number of incidents of violence and deteriorating student teacher relationship now. Are we just interested to bring Oscar home someway and get recognition? How can we forget our responsibility?

I will not blame the jury members at Film Federation of India. I am worried about the selection process. Do we seek views from our viewers, I mean our general public who go and watch the movie. If you take my view I’d suggest we could have done a survey on how our people perceived that movie on a large scale. It’s high time we must raise our voice to prevent any further damage.

* First published at http://writersatchatterati.blogspot.in/ on Sunday, 28 October 2007


Children are our future. We need to nurture them carefully and build correct personality in them for a sustainable growth. During a table topics session at a toastmasters meeting, the Table Topics Master asked me to enact the role of a 9 yr old boy proposing his 8 yr old girlfriend studying in same class. This topic came to me on children’s day. I was not in a mood to change the topic or escape the situation after attending so many table topics session. Still I could not play the role. Not because I can’t but what I felt that time was I should not.

I ask myself often should I do something because that is the need of the situation and people are awaiting your response or should I assert myself well before any act, whether I should do that or not. My heart gives me the answer that you do something what you want to do and not under any pressure that somebody wants you to do that. Doing such an act just to have fun what message can I convey to my audience and the society at large? Some people might understand the reality and some may not. Those who can understand the situation and think laterally will find me right and those who can’t will find a fool in me. Somebody told me later that my daughter is 6 years old and she is talking about girlfriends and boyfriends. From where do children learn these things? It’s non other than their surrounding environment, I mean the media like radio, TV, newspaper, magazines, mobile phones and more over the people they interact with. This can be another topic of discussion. Let me stick on to the current topic.

There is another instance on a TV show I’d like to elaborate. It was a reality show aired on cable TV network. It was a song competition and the participants were of different age groups of which mostly are children from 7 yr olds. The judges nominated were all well known personalities from film and music industry. In one instance one of the judges told a singer that I can’t give you the top grade. Your performance is very good but it needs improvement. The child started crying. The child was curious what he did wrong. Trying to explain him the judge answered, I can understand that the song is of high quality and we can’t expect such a deep level of emotion and sensuality in your expression. It’s quite natural from you, so don’t worry. I just can’t figure out what the 7 year old might have understood from such an explanation. If that is the case, why can’t we select specific songs according to age group of participants?

In another reality show which was a song competition, the judge awarded a 7-8 year old as the best performer. As a part of congratulatory talks finally he talked to his parents. Everybody seemed to be happy including the audience. All of a sudden another judge from the panel came up with a compliment. He told the audience, you know he has four girlfriends and there was laughter all around including his parents. I’ll leave the readers to analyze such a situation and it’s after effect on the child. I’ve attended meetings where I got the privilege to listen to Dr. Ali Khwaja who is a counselor, trainer and a child specialist having a Ph.D in counseling psychology. He had authored several books of educational value on human behavior, children and counseling. I have a similar thought on education and caring for children how he writes in his books.

There is a need now to understand the reality and correct ourselves before it’s too late. My assertion about the topic goes like this. There is a definite age for maturity. It may vary over a range of time for some people. We can’t produce wonder kids by providing them with all the information before a certain age what I view as maturity. Let them live their life free from complexity of this world at least till their under graduation before they can decide their future and learn how to deal with life situations. We should not steal childhood from children.

With the advent of technology and the first changing information age, you can’t hide anything to anybody. Only we can teach children to perceive the right thing and do away with the rest.

* First published at http://writersatchatterati.blogspot.in/ on Monday, 17 December 2007


I was reading an article in a local newspaper few days back. It was written somewhere there that we are not just the size of our bank account, the neighborhood we live in, or the type of work we do. We are, just like everyone else, an almost inconceivably complicated mix of abilities and limitations. A new kind of New Year’s resolution is becoming increasingly popular. Instead of dwelling on something they think is wrong with them and resolving to improve, a lot of people are taking a different approach. They are resolving to accept themselves. They are good people, complete people.

I will tell you about a person who is a member of a group that spreads the acceptance philosophy. I came to know about this in a book on happiness. She explains that she used to feel like she was in a trap she could not get out of. She would try to correct herself and change herself, and the failure to change was actually worse than the original problem itself. She felt like a maniac because of the pressures to change and the weight of failure. Now she counsels accepting ourselves, which does not mean ignoring our faults or never trying to improve. What it does mean is to believe in our own value first, last, and always. Most of my friend’s have a similar idea to believe in our own value always and not to disrespect others values.

More often we find it difficult to accept the truth because of fear of its possible outcome. Sometimes we keep ourselves busy finding out fault, right or wrong about something. Eventually we could not decide about something well and live in a confused state of mind. These kinds of confusion and inability to reach a justifiable conclusion often hamper our growth process. There is a need to think differently and act according to the situation we face. We can do all these if we can accept ourselves.

Let’s have a look at a survey on adults of different age groups. In a study of adult self-esteem, researchers found that people who are happy with themselves take defeat and explain it away, treating it as an isolated incident that does not reveal anything about their ability. People who are unhappy take defeat and let it grow, making it stand for the people who they feel are the cause behind their defeat and they use it to predict the outcome of their future life events. They are usually pessimists by nature. They can’t view things positively at first in case of any such event and keep themselves worried over it for long. This is because they are not in a sound frame of mind to accept them unless and until they realize how much damage are they causing to themselves by not accepting their fault. We need to treat them with care, honor and dignity and listen to them carefully before giving them any suggestion.

Sooner we can accept ourselves; the faster will be our growth. No body can restrict our growth then. We can take the example of the former American president Mr. Bill Clinton. He accepted himself, his fault and American people allowed him to live a life with dignity in their society. Well it came after a long exercise and a grueling experience. Let’s don’t do that with ourselves. We must accept ourselves sooner than later for prosperity and growth. The more we try to escape situations the bigger will be our problem.

We often face difficulty accepting ourselves at first because of the fear of failure, rejection and often social acceptance at times. There is a need here to accept ourselves unconditionally without attempting to prove ourselves right and others wrong. Healthy discussions, arguments and conflicts are good for the growth of all. Let’s don’t try to prove others wrong just to make our point right. There is a definite way to make people understand the reality and truth about something by proper approach and discussion. We need to find that out according to a particular situation because it may vary from one situation to another. That does not mean to compromise with situations. So let’s come out of all kind of pressure, accept ourselves, life as it comes to us and help ourselves in building a convivial workplace & society at large for optimum growth.

* First published at http://writersatchatterati.blogspot.in/ on Wednesday, 26 December 2007


 We often see so many cases in court that could not be resolved due to lack of evidence. There are so many dramatized guilty characters in movies we see escape successfully because of lack of poof against them. There are so many pending cases in real life that usually take a very long time before the judgment. Is our system full proof? This is not the same with the Chinese or American system of governance. So, why is this with us and where do we fail? Do we really fail? If so, what can be done about it and how can we speed up the process of judgment? Let’s analyze.

Hypothesis theory says unless proven guilty you are innocent. When a guilty person escapes punishment after the trial in a court, they call it a Type I error while if an innocent person gets punishment they view it as a Type II error which is more severe by nature. According to hypothesis theory, all these kinds of error need to be avoided to design a full proof system. An innocent should not be punished at any cost. So what is your problem with all these absurd thoughts what my friends and acquaintances say to me when we sit for a discussion over such a topic? Does that affect you anyway in your personal life? Why are you worried over it, it’s no the part of your job. Let the judiciary think about it. Do you all view it the same you as they say to me? We are all responsible citizens. Let’s think more about it.

Another theory says truth can’t be hidden. It will come to you in some form or the other at certain point of time in your life. Very often I hear the judge saying, the case is closed due to lack of enough supporting material against the verdict and the guilty is set free. The consequences to these kinds of judgments are many. It provides new ideas to criminals to commit a crime and escape. The guilty will first try to prove him innocent. If he can’t find evidence to support his claim, he will try to destroy all the evidence against him so that he can’t be proven guilty. This is usually the fact in most of the cases where the guilty finds a way to escape.

There is another instance of celebrities who escape such trial because of their higher social status and often in the name of their contribution to the society. The judge feels like they are very popular among a larger mass and they have less negative aspects to them compared to the positives they bring to the society. This is a new innovative way to promote crime and criminals. They are our politicians, film stars, sport personalities and many more.

Gujarat chief minister Mr. Narendra Modi accepts in public that a person was murdered because of his actions though he has not himself committed the crime. He also supports the act and always tried to prove the relevance of his act whenever questioned by media people. He is still popular and won the election again. Is he god? Famous personalities like Mr. Amitabh Bachhan or Mr. Sachin Tendulkar get special privilege and time limits to pay the heavy income tax on them but all other citizens has to file their returns within a fixed time that can’t be changed. But it can be changed for celebrities. Why is this discrimination while rich people like them can always pay anytime they want?

There is another way people try to escape. They accept the truth when they don’t find a way out to escape. Usually they do their research well on the facts for and against them. When they find the evidence is much against them, they look out for sympathy. This kind of situation is common among celebrities like Mr. Salman Khan or Mr. Sanjay Dutt. They don’t make it too late to accept the truth but try to gain sympathy from their fans and followers and eventually from the judge so that their punishment can be minimized say, to five years while it could have been a life term for an ordinary citizen.

Can we still say there is justice for all? Children today find a different meaning to the symbol of justice. Once I asked a boy who was studying in his seventh standard to explain me what he understands from the symbol of justice, I found a strange reply from him. He told the woman is blind folded so that see can’t see what we do and the judge while decision making so that he can make his decision without fear. When I asked him about the manual weighing instrument in her hand, he could not answer anything, he was just thinking about it. It was his perception. I fear how many of us know the truth about it. If all of us know the truth, why do our children have a different perception?

Now can I assume that truth can’t be hidden? Well, I can refine the theory from my thoughts and experiences that truth can’t be hidden or suppressed for ever. I may not be alive to witness the truth. It may take hundreds or thousands of years. It will show its face one day for sure. How clever the criminal may be, he can’t escape forever. He might escape the punishment during his life time but it will be a matter of shame for his descendants when the truth reveals its ugly face. You may think all these thoughts imaginary but it is the truth as I view it now. So, it’s always better to accept the truth and live a life free of burden.

* First published at http://writersatchatterati.blogspot.in/ on Monday, 7 January 2008


All living beings communicate by some mode or the other every day. If we observe closely we will discover some unique mode of communication among animals. I have been observing few animals from my childhood including our pet dogs, cats, parrots and white mouse. My mother is a great lover of animals. We used to discuss about the likes, dislikes and needs of our pets. One thing that we found common among all our pets is that all of them need love, care and affection. We will think more about them later. Let’s now focus on the most important species on earth – The Human Being.

As children, we start communicating to our parents, elders from the beginning even before understanding what communication is. A baby cries when she/he feels hungry. Crying is an effective mode of communication that a mother understands better as no body else. Very few people understand this fact including the father himself when a baby cries. As elders we cry at times for different reasons. We express our grief, sorrow and sometimes anger by crying. Some people cry out of happiness. Sometime we are so happy that we could not control suppressing our happiness before others and tears come out of our eyes. Especially we feel like this when we get surprise happiness after a long fight with our sorrow that we’re not expecting.

Sometimes negativities are so much around us that we suspect people even our well wishers. We don’t take care much about their words and try to find negative meaning out of it. We understand later when we realize the truth behind their words why it’s being told to us repeatedly. Particularly these things happen with children and at times with elders too. Why do we find it so difficult to live with others without sacrificing or prioritizing our personal needs?

Direct communication can be helpful to meet urgent requirements even if we have doubt over its long term benefits. Indirect communication is more helpful while there is no urgency and we want to meet our long term objectives. Let’s analyze a situation where we love two people who have conflict among themselves and we don’t want to lose anybody in our life because of their personal conflicts. A very common example of such a situation could be with a child whose parents often quarrel with each other and he could only witness the event keeping his mouth shut. He could not communicate his thoughts to them directly because of the fear of losing one or both of them eventually and at the same time finds it difficult to digest the fact.

Indirect mode of communication may help here. She/he has to play dual role here, sometimes as a daughter/son and sometime as a mother/father. Do I say the son/daughter has to be the father/mother of his/her father/mother? Yes. It may seem absurd and immature to at first glance but there is a real possibility of success if we can conduct such an experiment where the son/daughter has outgrown himself/herself in terms of life’s experience. How can I write this, is it from my personal experience? No. I have reached here partly from my discussion with people and significantly from a simple fact. That is “children are the best people to bond a family rather that any other friends/relatives”. This could be true with ‘n’ number of people in love even if outside our family if we can extend our love and empathy for others. Children can solve few problems effectively where a counselor fails using indirect mode of communication.

To understand human beings better we must develop effective communication skills in us. Sometime we pass wrong message to others through our notes or speech because of our uncontrolled thoughts and mood even though we don’t have any bad intention. I sometime try to recover something from my past memory and provide some information without analyzing the facts properly resulting in insufficient and incorrect information even though not false. These things happen because of improper analysis of our act prior to it and when we are in a hurry and fail to gain control over our emotions because of anger.

Sometimes we don’t want to provide personal information to strangers or people with whom we are not very familiar and in order to protect ourselves and trying to escape from a situation we provide wrong information to them intentionally so that the person will not feel neglected. Actually it causes more harm than good to us. It’s really very difficult to say no about something we don’t like effectively because of the fear of losing friends and relatives in our life. Indirect mode of communication helps where a direct mode fails.

There could be a situation where I want to make a person understand something and find it difficult to communicate directly because of the fear of its consequences. I may lose him/her in the process. This is often true where the receiver is a pessimist. Can we change pessimists to optimists? How can effective communication help here? This is a real challenge for managers. Personally I like comments and criticism as it helps me in my personal growth to become a better human being first before everything else. But how’ll the other person know about it unless I communicate?

Is it a good idea to use negative mode of communication? I don’t know. It has a double impact. It could be disastrous and it could be fruitful. When it’s fruitful it has long term benefits. Sometimes we use this with people whom we don’t trust to know more about them. Nobody can hear unpleasant words about their loved ones in any mode of communication. When we hear such words our perception changes about the person who talks like this and we think negative about her/him even though she/he is our well wisher as we don’t realize the truth at first.

This often happens because we occupy the entire space in our life for our own thoughts and fail to think about others or provide some space for others in our life. But why do we hear such words from others. We may be the source and root cause behind it without our knowledge even though we are innocent. So, let’s analyze ourselves first before we start questioning others. Sometimes I don’t know right or wrong about much of my own writings that comes from my thoughts. We understand late only when it reaches us through comments and criticism. This is a very effective mode of communication. Personally I like direct mode of communication even if I fail to evaluate a situation well at first. It is beneficial to me as it corrects me without much delay and I find enough time to analyze the issue later. Be it direct or be it indirect, any mode of communication has some benefits and few drawbacks. These are all situational. The same mode of communication may be helpful for one person while irritating for the other. I am thankful to all who use a direct mode of communication while interacting with me.

* First published at http://writersatchatterati.blogspot.in/ on Friday, 23 May 2008


 Time is the most important entity in everybody’s life. Can it be measured? We follow certain standards for measuring time. These are all relative to one another. Can we measure our life span accurately? Nobody can do that though we can predict. Studies have found that average life expectancy today is about 77 years for human beings. Again there is a remarkable gap here between men and women. It is 73.6 years for males and 79.4 years for females. When we do research we collect data, both past and present for a known species and based on our findings we reach a conclusion. So, that is again relative to time and hence there is nothing called absolute time. Today is our present, yesterday was our past and tomorrow is our future. It’s all about time and how we measure it.

In economics we study time value of money. In simpler terms it means that “the value of money tomorrow may not be what it is today”. Money represents our purchasing power and varies over time. We don’t get the same amount of an object for the same amount of money all the time. Cost of gold five years ago was not the same as it’s today. It’s changed (increased) many folds over this period of time. When we invest our money somewhere over a period of time, we expect a good return on our investment at maturity.

Let’s have a study of time in sports and games. Time plays a critical role in rapid chess events. The referee blows whistle in hockey and football at specified time intervals as per rule of the game. I have watched athletes crossing the line at millisecond gap in Olympics. In cricket there is penalty for the side bowling first if they take extra time to finish the over. They have to reach the target runs at less number of over for slow bowling rate. At TMI (Toastmasters International) we measure time. The speakers and other role players have a pre specified time for each role to perform. Speakers have five to seven minutes to present their speech and evaluators should not take more that three minutes for each evaluation. There are time limits for other role players too. A speaker gets disqualified if she/he crosses the time limit even though the quality of speech is very good. Time management is so important that no body is allowed to break the rule and it disciplines certain activities. We can’t frame rules/guidelines ourselves. We need to abide by this. Rules/guidelines are generally built upon proven records and past experiences. So, we should respect and follow that. There is scope for review and change for a certain rule/guideline. Again that is dependent on time.

Environmental factors play a great role in managing our time. Natural calamities like earthquake and cyclone cause postponement of examinations. We don’t reach school, college or office in time because of traffic congestion and sometimes due to heavy rain. School going children who have pending task like home work often say “Thank god it’s a rainy day” and we have extra time now. In old days people were dependent on Sun to have understanding of time. And then developed the solar clock where the shadow of a pointer generated by sun rays was the basis of time measurement. Ancient cultures all across the globe made use of the changing rise and set position of the Sun to track the seasons. With the advent of technology, today we have so many options to look at time. We are not just dependent on wrist watches or wall clocks. Electronic gadgets like mobile phones and all form of computers give us time. If you have nothing around you at home to know the present time, just switch on to a news channel. Fortunately I have a TV at home.

One of my friends had a unique idea of time management. They had a computerized attendance system for each class and the professor was very strict on time. As per the rule students had to log on within a specific time interval from the start of the class or else they’d be marked absent for that session. My friend used to reach late everyday at the class. His problem was with traffic and the distance he covers to his class. For him the situation was unavoidable and without the minimum attendance he could not appear for the final test. He thought over it a long and come up with a solution plan. He used technology to a great extent here for his own needs at few occasions. He used to change the computer time and then log on to the system. After logging in he again restores the computer time to the present time. In that way he got full attendance at few classes. I don’t know how far he was successful in that and if ever caught up doing that. When I asked him about that he denied me to reveal any further information. Whatever he did, I am not analyzing right or wrong here, but was he managing his time? He made fool of others successfully and had a short gain but a great personal loss by doing this. He developed a very bad habit over a period or time.

We submit our office timesheet regularly. Timesheet provides needed information for finance and accounting and it recognizes our true work efforts. It keeps track of our daily office activities like how much time we spend at work and how much away from work. How can we submit our timesheet for the entire week in midday of the week? Something might happen tomorrow and I may not come. In that case how can I submit my timesheet today for days of future that I haven’t worked and when nobody can predict the future? The constraint here is that the timesheet can’t be modified once submitted. If I need to go on leave or fell ill then how can I change my timesheet hours from eight to zero?

In my case when I am allowed to submit my timesheet for the days that I haven’t worked, I feel careless about the coming days and I feel three is no need to work when I’ve already been marked present for all the days. Also I feel like why I should work 8 hours for a day where it’s already submitted with 8 hours. I can safely leave home working 1-2 hours and no body can notice that. Is it not contradictory when we submit our timesheet before time? How can it provide our true work effort? So, when we submit time for days to come, we clearly provide false information. We should understand the importance of time and should not provide false information about our work. It’s a basic issue with everybody to be resolved soon without much delay. It’s impossible to get desirable results with this trend. After all why should we provide wrong information? Any information of the past that does not tally the records is wrong and all the assumed information of the future is wrong.

I have few collected thoughts and quotes on time as follows. To realize the value of ONE YEAR ask a student who has failed his final exam, To realize the value of ONE MONTH ask a mother who has given birth to a premature baby, To realize the value of ONE WEEK ask an editor of a weekly newspaper, To realize the value of ONE DAY ask a daily wage laborer who has kids to feed, To realize the value of ONE HOUR ask the lovers who are waiting to meet, To realize the value of ONE MINUTE ask a person who has just missed their plane. To realize the value of ONE SECOND ask a person who has survived an accident. To realize the value of ONE MILLISECOND ask the person who has won a silver medal in the Olympics.

“Many people seem to think that success in one area can compensate for failure in other areas. But can it really? True effectiveness requires balance.”
— Stephen Covey
“Don’t say you don’t have enough time. You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson, and Albert Einstein.”
— H. Jackson Brown
“The bad news is time flies. The good news is you’re the pilot.”
— Michael Altshuler
“The only limit to our realization of tomorrow will be our doubts of today.”
— Franklin D. Roosevelt
“The surest way to be late is to have plenty of time.”
— Leo Kennedy

We can never ignore the importance of time in our life. Managing time or rather say managing ourselves is vital and has significant relevance in today’s context. We reach office late and blame it on the traffic. Some time we reach late at meetings and carry a bad name for us. At school few of my friends were popular as late comers among other students. We don’t have food on time and sleep late in the night. We have to meet deadlines at work and often we find it difficult to manage. We develop fatigue stretching ourselves too long at work that hampers our productivity. Infosys authority at bhubaneswar had conducted a time-management experiment. It passed a rule that for one week no employee was to stay in office after 5.30 pm. The management found that work was getting done as before. I had read this on The Telegraph, Calcutta-04th September, 2005. What I find is time controls us and not the vice versa. It’s practically impossible to manage time. We can only manage ourselves (and not time) by learning and developing effective time management skills in us which is essential for a better living.


* First published at http://writersatchatterati.blogspot.in/ on Thursday, 5 June 2008


Hollywood diva Katy Perry is in news again for her work on charity. Bids for her cupcake trampoline have sailed past a whopping $1,600 at a fund raising auction as a part of Japanese relief efforts. The item has attracted thirty seven bids with just two days left of the sale. The money from the auction will go to Red Cross to be on relief and rehabilitation work in the earthquake and tsunami affected areas of japan.

It’s not uncommon to see celebrities coming forward for charitable work these days ranging from sports personalities to movie stars. While it’s heartening to see celebrities contributing their worth to the society for a cause, it’s not without a purpose. Auctioning goods from the rich and famous often draws attention of a large crowd. The process of auctioning makes an ordinary item extraordinary as if it’s something to be possessed by everybody. They portray it as a lifetime opportunity to grab it at first hand. This process creates a competitive environment among customers who run after the item to own it. This way an item may get sold at a price hundred times its base selling price.

A common man may get unnoticed even with a big donation but when a celebrity volunteers for a cause it serves a dual purpose. While the money collected from auctioning goes to serve the needy, it costs very little to the primary owner of the good compared to the return they get from their fans. The already rich and famous become more popular among their fans that can definitely enhance their brand and market value. This way they always keep themselves in news. This is a big return on their investment. So, it’s never without a purpose!!

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