Saturday, October 29, 2011

Letter to Rishu..

(This post is written as a response to my brother's (Rishu) post in You may like to read his blog first to get the complete context)

Dear Rishu..

I don’t want to sound like preaching but because I have found myself facing similar questions at one stage, I feel like sharing my opinion.

First of all, everything works out to be fine, if you are lucky; else it doesn’t, on its own.

But unfortunately there is no absolute formula. There is no choice, course or answer which is absolutely right or wrong; it can only be generally or relatively right or wrong. Therefore it is difficult to know whether you are wasting or utilizing your time.

Indeed, the shift from 2 days to 2 hours happens because of the expectation, the world and we set for ourselves, to do the multi-tasking. But in that bargain, the world and we, start taking the quality of outcome and/ or the pleasure of doing it as secondary. Believe me, the best things of the world are innovated or made only when one keeps the quality in mind and pleasure in heart while doing it.

Therefore my opinion is even when you have got multiple things to do; please set a priority to them in order of your liking and long term objectives. Aforesaid gives you direction to take the right calls, for example whether to attend to a distinguished speaker or to spend time with your wife. (It may sound a little preposterous but most of times I have found spending time with dear ones more useful. Remember there will never be a you-tube or recorded session of the evening walk you had with your wife).

My opinion is even if it appears impossible; please try to plan your time judiciously between your work/ study and your family. If you are able to now, you will always be successful in your life. And remember, Kanu will always be more important than Steve Jobs to you.

You are right about ‘Trusting’ your study group members. Later as a manager you will have to trust yourself and your team to achieve desired results. A good manager is identified by what I call the '3 Ds': Decide, Delegate and Deliver.

A manager must ‘decide’; right or wrong and if s/he fails, s/he is not a manager. Second, a manager must ‘delegate’ else s/he will become a bottleneck to progress; and finally, s/he must deliver which means s/he must not quit till end. In all 3 Ds, trust to her/ his and team’s ability is an underlying element. Trust builds the platform to all managerial competencies, one develops eventually.

And lastly, be prepared for failure. Being prepared for failure doesn’t mean you don’t trust yourself or your team, it only means that you try to ensure ‘everything works out to be fine’, even when you aren’t lucky. Even mental preparedness helps, to stand up again and continue. You may lose some battles, but you will win the war.

With lots of love and best wishes

Saturday, October 8, 2011

When tomorrow comes..

“You haven’t learnt it yet”, Kuhoo had caught me slyly looking at the girl sitting in front of us.

“Actually I see you in all the girls. Some have got your eyes; some have got your smile; some walk like you; some talk like you, it’s so difficult to avert my eyes when I see even a glimpse of you in a girl, you know”.

Kuhoo couldn’t stop smiling.

We had boarded the train from Delhi to Haldwani. The girl in front of us was around 16, may be less. She was cute and an incorrigible attention seeker. She reminded me of some of my friends who are so very cautious about how they look, how they dress etc, though a similar behavior at this age was a little odd. Perhaps the world is changing with teens’ trying to appear as matures; and matures trying to appear as teens.

 “So what’s the plan?”

“Just to spend time with you for next 2-3 days”.

“Wish I could draw this Romeo out of office more often”.

Haldwani is the gateway to Kumaon range of Himalayas and many of hill stations like Nainital, Ranikhet, Almora, Kausani, Binsar, Pithoragarh etc are located in this range. Traveling among these hills always feels like homecoming and this was my plan for the holidays.

By late night we had reached Haldwani (at Kuhoo’s elder sister’s place).

Next day it was 4th October morning, Dushehra’s Ashtami. And Kuhoo could persuade her Jiju and Didi to come along with us. Finally we all were going to Ranikhet, Kausani and Almora by car.

We started around 10 AM.

En route we stopped at several places for tea, fruit juice and scenic views and pictures. Especially the terrain after Bhuwali (a small town known for sanatorium for tuberculosis patients and apple orchards) is rich of Pine and Conifer trees. The weather was fine and the winds had the sweet chillness.

Adi had fun seeing me not working at all. Throughout he mimicked on how I talk, how I walk, etc. We burst into laughter when he sat with his cousin brother to just show how seriously his papa looks while talking.

We reached Ranikhet around 3 PM and since this was Dushehra Ashtami, we visited the Kali Durga temple first.

It was evening by the time we went to the famous golf course where some shots of movie Raja Hindustani were taken. We found the place fresh, green and wide. We spent a lot of time playing around. Mummy too liked the place a lot.

Later we went to Chaubatia, the place of apple orchards. We found the flowers coming on the trees. Kuhoo was fasting; she developed a kind of motion sickness as we reached the place on a hill top. I got a little worried but thankfully mummy was there; she took us to a tea stall, where we sat for a while and had tea. Kuhoo was soon back in her elements.

We came down to visit ‘Jhula Devi’ temple. Both Kali Durga and Jhula Devi s are quite old and have folk lore attached.

Later we reached Heda Khan temple. It was Sandhya Aarti time by then. Heda Khan temple is a very popular temple of Lord Shiva in that region. It is visited by several actors/ actresses of bollywood and is managed by Heda Khan Baba’s disciples (mostly foreigners.)

By 8 PM, we returned to our hotel, ‘Parwati Inn’ in Ranikhet. Our hotel was reasonable (Rs 1500-2000 per night) and well located. We had the Ranikhet market below our balconies and overview of the mountain range in front of us. Services are satisfactory and they have lots of parking space.

The next day started with Kuhoo whispering into my ears. “I have forgotten my purple salwar”. I realized that day that only purple goes with purple; any other color like skin color, black or white doesn’t match. Well I went down to the market and got a purple one immediately.

We then started for Kausani and Almora. This was the day of Dushehra Navami. Both Kuhoo and Didi had to pray and then break their fast. We first stopped at ‘Siddheshwari Mata Temple”. We all were mesmerized with its serene and magnificent look on the slope of a forested hill. Photography was prohibited inside.

Later we decided not to get inside any town but to roam around the hills surrounding Kausani and Almora. And we did exactly that. While going towards Kausani, we stopped at Ranikhet Golf course again.

On the way to Kausani, we stopped by a roadside restaurant at a place called Naini. I found some time to pick some forest flowers and placed them at their next best place.

Sometime in afternoon, we started the return journey. We stopped at various places, for tea, for trekking, scenic-sides, riverside, wherever we felt like.

While coming back we finally stopped at Kainchi Ashram, the place where celebrities keep coming to. This is the same ashram where Steve Jobs came looking for meditation and peace.

These were the times when I was myself. I did what I kept postponing..for some 'right' time.

I believe it is important to hear the inner voice and accept what we want; it helps us be ourselves and realize the best use of times in our lives.

It also makes us ready to take any decision..when tomorrow comes...