Sunday, November 30, 2008

Arrogance of Non Performance

At a recent team meeting, I spoke on this topic and from the feedback towards the end of the session, I thought people liked it, at least some of them!

All of us are familiar with and have met at some point in time, people who are arrogant. We see them at our work place, they are our friends, some are our relatives – cousins and uncles and aunts… At times it’s just us, we ourselves are arrogant at times for various reasons.

Arrogance is displayed for reasons like wealth, looks, performance at work, material belongings – great car, mobile phone, gold and jewels and at times for something as despicable as one knowing someone influential or being close to someone!

This is one extreme why people behave in a way that is considered arrogant. There is this other extreme that I really wanted to touch upon and that is “Arrogance of Non Performance”. Being arrogant without any reason (well the one who is arrogant does not/never realizes that the reasons that one is arrogant for are either too trivial or non-existent for everyone other than they themselves)

People behaving in an arrogant manner in spite of not performing to the expectations, not doing their job as required, not complying to the basic objectives. This arrogance stems from couple of key issues.

· At times its due to a sense of jealousy and hatred for those around you who are performing well and behaving in a nice manner that is just not going well with the person involved.

· At other times its due to a feeling of inferiority complex that others are able to do better while I am not able to make much progress though everyone seems to be equal on other terms – education, experience etc. It’s just that – a feeling, in reality there may not be any difference in the capabilities of the people involved, it’s just the attitude.

· At times this is also due to an utter lack of knowledge, learnability and adaptability. There are people who REFUSE to learn, adapt and move forward. Such people have an unfound arrogance about the little knowledge and exposure that they posses, many times this knowledge has never got upgraded and they seldom understand or see other view points, this is amongst the more self inflicting arrogance of non performance one would ever see.

I myself have gone through a phase when I “suffered” from this, early on in my career, in fact the very start of my career as a Management Trainee. I was in this frame of mind that everyone around me knew less and more so people with a varied and great no of years of experience too would be placed in that category of everyone else around me.

An event that really brought about the change was when suddenly out of nowhere me and my colleague (we both were new to the org) were asked to handle a shift as in charge. That’s when I realized how little I knew and how much more there was to learn. Late in the night when I reflected on the day, It changed my perspective and I suddenly found myself on the other side, I was willing to learn, I had opened my mind to new things, I believed everything was possible, I became less stubborn about concepts and I accepted CHANGE as the thing to look for!

You sometimes have to go thru the process, learn the tricks of the trade and then criticize. It’s a lot easier to say things, from the outside, sitting on the fence. Those who jump in and that too with an open mind to learn and make things better typically do well and are successful. Those who are willing to see the other and “new” view point, one that may be very different from what they have been thinking because of their lack of knowledge and understanding find it difficult to cope. Those that keep thinking they know more, close their minds and refuse to learn and adapt to change suffer in life – professional as well as personal.

Friday, November 28, 2008

The Mumbai Drama - A city under siege

What happened in Mumbai on the night of 26/11 has upset many Indians. I personally came to know of the tragedy only late in the night/early morning on the 27th when a friend of mine called up from the US to check if all was well with my friends and family in Mumbai.


When I switched on the TV, watched the LIVE footage for a few minutes, I could gather the gravity of the situation, it seemed to be a tough one and I was sure many, many innocent people would lose their lives in the encounters and counter operations that would follow.


The lack of political will and a spineless, vote-bank-feeding-policy-making government is what we have got at the center that is more interested in ensuring its own survival rather than looking at people’s safety and security.


A city that has been repeatedly, a sitting target for anti nationals deserves better administration and cover than what it gets today. It’s a symbol of the capital and financial prowess India as a nation could one day become, It’s a symbol of the “Unity in diversity” that we so proudly flaunt when we speak to our friends from other countries, It’s a melting pot of different communities and castes and religions and languages that represent a true cosmopolitan nature of a truly diverse city….


A City like Mumbai cannot be a sitting duck to anyone carrying guns and ammo and getting into a trawler from Karachi and reaching its shores and holding up the whole city to its fears.


Dear Mr. Deshmukh and Dear Dr. Man Mohan Singh, Kindly do your job and Mr. Prime Minister, you can start out with throwing a certain Mr. Shivraj Patil (Honorable Home Minister) out the cabinet, Please.


We want you to protect us and protect us well, Innocent people expect this small favor for the votes they cast you to take care of them, Please oblige, for once, the city may not forgive you AGAIN.