Friday, May 22, 2009

Yet another way to find jobs

For those of you who have struggled a little to find a job, you will probably appreciate this innovative way of job hunt.

I was on a city bus on my way to office. My work place is on one of the prime software localities in Bangalore. When I say 'Prime', I mean, there are at least five software complexes, on the same road. Each complex is a huddle of software companies - Dwarfs to Giants.

From where I sat, I could clearly read this : Job Wanted : Mobile : 1234567890 ( There was a local mobile number written). It was written with a black marker or sketch pen on the back rest of one of the seats.

For a minute my cheers fell, thinking about the back drop of the scene when this might have been written. The unknown job seeker could be coming back from an interview that had just flopped, might have just then lost a job, might have just then resigned from a job, might have just then finished graduation, might have lost hopes of finding jobs through friends/job sites/ corporate career sites/recommendations, or might have just been denied a self-employment loan from a bank...

The list seemed endless and suddenly I saw the positive side to the job seeker advertisement.

The very idea of scribbling a phone number on the back rest of a bus is in itself very brilliant.

Almost 90% of the commuters in this route in office hours, usually belong to the IT sector, or academicians, or public sector employees. And, about 50% of the 90% lot belong to IT sector for sure. Considering that 10% of the crowd travels by this particular bus and at least one person sees this in a number of bus trips on a given day, there is a chance that seven people would have seen the number in a given week. So the job seeker now has given the contact number to seven people in the hope that at least one opportunity would cross his way.

I am sure the unknown job seeker wouldn't have thought about this approximate statistics when writing this advertisement...It might be just an un-aimed shot, but for all you know, the job seeker would find a job when someone who is looking out for a candidate reads this number.

This may not be the best way to find a job, but goes to say that the job seeker had left no stone unturned, when it comes to job hunt.

My thoughts : Lady luck smiles, some HR person sees this advertisement as 'Brilliant-Saves the recruiters a lot of time and money' and dials the number.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Why Dewdrop?

A lot of people have asked me this question over the last three years... Why Dewdrop?

I thought I'll just rewind back three and a half years or so where I was still a beginner writer in one of the software companies in Chennai.

I didn't know I could write.. meaning, write anything other than technical subjects centered around my job, as a technical writer.

One fine afternoon, just as I got back from lunch, a heavy workload had piled up into my inbox. One thing with work back just came in like wind......I was staring at my mail box, mostly because I felt like the work load was a little boring and also because it was a sleepy afternoon after a heavy lunch.

There was this particular manager M who was known to be efficient and of course strict.. If you had worked with any manager in your career, I am sure you would have realized by now, that it takes that implicit or explicit strict aura about the manager to achieve the team's goals. So, that's the kind of manager I am talking about.

I was definitely not expecting Mr.M to walk over to my aisle and ask if I have time to take a role in the company's newsletter. When it comes to doing something on creativity or organizing something back-stage, I had never once said a 'No'. So when asked about the news letter, I said a strong 'Yes'. A few others from M's team also joined the group. We had some interesting thoughts put into action and framed a nice news letter. All the while, I saw reasons why M's team was the team it was - we all were tuned to be so systematic, allowing for some occasional mess-ups and lots of fun. When we were finalizing the layout, there was one more article that we needed. We sought for articles company-wide, and M just decided that I will write that piece. I had no clue what to write, but I still agreed. Sometimes its not what you can do but what the team-player in you can do.

I sat down to write my first ever piece of art outside my work. It was called Have a Nice day. I have posted it here on my blog. Next challenge was to think of a pen name. The major plus about this first piece of writing is that it is hundred percent straight out of my mind, a thought that was pure and un-plagiarised. Pure to me has always reminded of Dewdrop. That's how I picked up this name.

After all the efforts, the management turned down that newsletter. I was of course not able to take it easy while, Mr.M didnt see it as an issue. He only said, 'It was a nice change and a great experience for the team doing that news letter.'.... Way too positive for me to handle, I thought. Coming to think of it now, if it weren't for M's quick invite and my 'just-give-it-a-shot' attitude, I wouldn't have discovered that I can express myself through writing.

I started this blog when I was so occupied at work one day and was beginning to get bored. I thought of writing something outside work, thought of the newsletter work once again, and decided to do a random search on google on where to post anything that is yours... Found, remembered friends who used to send me web link to their blogs and just decided to start blogging. Name was an easy choice.. Dewdrop. I didn't have second thoughts.

Thanks to that newsletter effort, Mr.M and thanks to everyone who have contributed in every small or big way to this blog of mine. I didn't think I will see a number of 150 here. This is the 151st post and I thought of stopping a minute to say Thanks to everyone who has directly or indirectly contributed to my writing - people who have given ideas, who have been the subject of my writing, who took time to read my blog and didn't post comments, who had the patience to post comments, who gave constructive criticisms, and who have been very encouraging always.

Over the last three plus years of blogging, I have learnt that Every instance - word, deed, person, experience that you are put into, can give you a Chance to say, do, be, learn, or achieve something New and better.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

If and When

Yesterday afternoon, I was walking past a cubicle and saw this quote written on the whiteboard:

Plant If and When; And Nothing grew.

How true!!!!!

Any decision, commitment, statement, promise reads much better without these two words and the phrase that follows these intelligent words.

Put an 'If phrase' in your statement; then you can clearly say that the probability of the instance is very less.

If possible, I will return the book today. ( Meaning, I am not even attempting!!!!, but I am being nice to keep you informed of the same, hoping you'll take the hint.) If this is not serious enough, try substituting the word 'money' for book.. It should read better....

Put a 'When phrase' in your statement; then you can as well clearly say it wont happen.

When I find time, I'll look at it. ( Meaning, I will not be able to put in the kind of time that your work demands. Just that, this is my way of saying I may or may not be able to do what you are asking..)

Makes me wonder, if this quote was referring to project management. I guess, it suits most walks of life.

The next time we give someone a word, let's be sure not to use 'if' and 'when'. Now that we know what these phrases can mean in commitment and decisions, its better to keep it minimal. I am making a conscious effort starting NOW!!!!!!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Murphy's law - Tried and tested facts

Note : Read till the end before you attempt to dismiss it off as just another pessimistic note.

When you want to hurry up:

Try waiting for a bus, you will almost always see two buses coming from where you want to go.
Try taking an auto and it will surely get caught in a traffic jam or run out of fuel or just break down abruptly somewhere mid-way.

When you just took a decision and thought it was not late:

Try making a railway reservation - the return journey tickets will surely be available.
Try taking a flight - There will surely be an extra alert on security that day and the security check is bound to take a lot of time.
Try picking up the phone - It will almost always be out of order or the network will be busy.

When you are just thrilled that in an hour's time you will meet your timeline on the dot:

Try using the tried and tested software that had never once gone wrong in your able hands : It is sure to throw at least one error, to say the least.
Try sending that last email to intimate a job done : Your email network will be busier than usual and your mail will remain in your outbox.

When you are running late for a function:

Try looking for the invite card : It will almost always be inside a cupboard that you just locked.
Try looking for the house keys : It will definitely be in the same place where you left it, just that you wont recall where.

When you are tired of the kitchen work and are waiting to get to the sofa in the living room:

Try taking something from the refrigerator : It will almost always spill or fall or break, meaning extra work to the already tired you.
Try tasting what you just cooked : It will almost always need something more or less, meaning extra effort to get it right.

When you are super-thrilled to have reached the office on time :

Try taking out the id card from your bag : It will almost always be in the next compartment of your hand bag.
Try logging into your system : It will take at least five minutes longer than usual to start up.

Am I being pessimistic? No, definitely not.......even if the write up reads that way. I have just written what we have all known and observed.

The only problem in all these cases is that we race with the clock. So, let's just go by : Participation in the race is more important than winning it.

So, relax and do what you think is possible at the given time. Yes, you must do all that you can, but it helps to remember Murphy's law to make you feel better : If anything can go wrong, it will.

Take it easy. Clocks are smarter than you any day. :-)

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Don't waste....

Someone had remarked to me recently : Do not waste your time..

It hurt me quite a bit. I did give it a thought, but then dismissed it off.

Its not the first time that we hear this statement about not wasting time. Everyone says Don't waste time, but will never tell you how not to waste time and how to know if you are really wasting time on something. So I have always preferred to use the word 'Spend' instead of the word 'Waste' in the context of Time.

I am an optimistic person here, as I believe that what seems a waste of time today will definitely be a useful investment at some point in time.Now, this does not mean I don't waste time. May be I do, but I weigh my priorities and then spend time. ( Try using the word 'Spend' to sound optimistic!!! )

This thought line was running on my mind when I boarded the city bus yesterday. I still couldn't take the remark easy.

A college student was lost in her book. It looked like she was preparing for an exam. The bus was crowded and from where I stood I was directly peering into her book. It was more like, I didn't have a choice, but to read the text. :-) and this is what it read :

Don't waste food;
Don't waste money;
Don't waste time;
Don't waste energy.

It was a lesson on economics, management or life in general. I didn't gather that as my mind was glued to these lines.

Coming to think of it, these lines cover all that we can possibly waste. Or should I say, all that we waste belong to the category of food, money, time, or energy.

Makes me think, if this is all we need to know and follow right now, given the economic, social, and ethical situation in the world.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Summer and AC : I just don't understand........

On a hot summer afternoon

( Don't ask me if there can be a cold summer afternoon in Tamil Nadu, India....Check the Web facts about Summer in Tamil Nadu if you wish to.... ),

So on a hot summer afternoon... you don't even think twice to step out...There are a hundred things to do for yourself and mostly it is necessity to step out at that unimaginable summer heat - 44 Degree Celsius, 90% humidity.

For those who say, we've seen worst summers... stay with the post, you'll see why I am saying this.. Let me get my thoughts out first....

Its become a habit ( Old habits die hard ) to complain about the heat in summer. Of course, the heat will be difficult to handle, cotton clothes will be soaked in sweat, you'll have to take bath at least twice a day, you will feel tired, you will feel drained out of energy and your temper will hit the roof with a reasonable hit on your overall enthusiasm..

Now, if you rethink about it, wasn't last summer like this too? When was the last summer you remember, that you felt a cold wind hit your face?? I don't ever remember one such summer like that... All we can do is drink lots of water and stay indoors during mid day to play some hide and seek with the mid-day summer heat.

So, I have been hearing all the complaints about this summer too, in Bangalore, Karnataka, India... ( supposed to be better, climatically).. I say to myself: People, wait till you get shipped to Tamil Nadu a summer Noon.)

Last night when I was getting ready to retire off for the day, I heard my father say: Its amazing how we complain so much of heat on a summer day, make the room air-conditioned, pay high electricity bills and use blankets because we cannot handle high AC....

How True....!!!!!.......

You spend for the AC and use a thick blanket to avoid the cold air( cozy is the false name that English Language has given to it) ....

I just don't understand the Heat, AC, Sky-high bills, Blanket thing....It is a cyclic thing, you get stuck in this, you cannot understand why and can't come out of it either....


With new opportunities also comes to fear and self-doubt. How can we navigate these very strong forces in order to reach our fulfillment...