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Friday, March 23, 2012

Bollywood's CONfusion is in the AIR !

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Please don't sneeze. After reading this post, you might want to take nasal spray to clear the air a bit in a hope to breathe fresh air someday, but let me tell you its futile.

I am lucky because I get some free time in the evenings and over weekends. However ever since I moved to Middle East my movie dose has reduced significantly. It has resulted in a loss of appetite, dry thoughts keep wandering across my minds rapidly accompanied by empty sand storms and a hollow tranquility.

But ya, living in Middle East has lot of advantages, more then I could have imagined. The best one and perhaps most important one is easy access to Indian T.V channels, ya all of them, at the almost same time and pace. After a long time, I decided to create a collage, thanks to the daily dose of Indian TV channels and through them easy and almost free access to most latest of the Bollywood movies.

After creating this collage, I realized that pictures do speak 1000 words. So I can afford to keep this blog post small, like the script and plot of the above Bollywood movies. Call it a coincidence, but I came across most of the above movies and many more, which I cant recall now with same story line, that of confused lovers. These in love people are either too afraid to accept their love or have find love of their life after getting engaged to someone seemingly boring but nice at heart person. Somehow the Music of all these movies has been great, in some of the movies even the performance of the actors under given scope was also good. But as we know our Bollywood Directors and Producers are famous for making the most while the sun shines, so they decided to make the most of this new age, gen Z, confused love bird stories. The big advantage is that the Directors and Producers dont have to spend much on story, sets, editing, costumes or even on the fee and remuneration of actors. The acting by the likes of Imran Khan and Deepika Padukone is so good and repetitious that sometimes I really wish and hope that they get rid of their straight faced confusion soon and can live happily ever after.

Back in 90s our beloved Rajs and Simrans used to invite us with arms wide open to fall in Love and now days we are getting emails with open invitation to fall in the confusion. I am married and so I can afford to remain confused, what about you ? Still searching for the Nasal spray !!

By the way, dear Directors and Producers of such confused character love hate stories, we had enough of these, we got the point, we appreciate the confusion and have full sympathy with your metro-sexual, wannbe successful, untalented, protagonists. Kindly stop making such movies ! Enough of CONfusion!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Why Women Liberation Can Take Off Only in India !

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The instance of misbehavior, heinous crimes against women in India are among the highest in the world, yet there are few things which makes me feel positive.

A lot of confusion is spread on the web and in the minds of educated Indian men and women about the orthodox, way of life which I hope will clear out slowly. Majority of confusions are about Traditions and Religion. Driven by consumerism and desire to make quick buck, gain quick fame or pleasures local traditional or global festivals are getting reduced to occasional superficial lip-service, pompous celebrations. 

While a lot of traditions are good, many are bad, illogical and with passage of time such traditions have bee dying natural death. Traditions are usually regional phenomena which evolved either in response to an external situation such as geography or climate or out of one odd instances. Parda Pratha for example started in northern parts of India to safeguard the women from the eyes of soldiers and fighters from Central Asia who frequently invaded India for over 1000 years. Parda Pratha is not part of any religion of India origin. Similarly traditions such as Sati though abolished and extinct now developed due to one odd incidence. Modern educated Indian women might find traditions of Karva Chauth or Rakhi as discriminating or demeaning but once again these are not propagated by any Religion. In-fact if some time and efforts are made to learn the stories and anecdotes behind each of these rituals everybody can learn precious lessons.

Religion according to me is the biggest influence on the Indian psyche. And I believe that the premise of almost all religions originated from India is fairly neutral to positive towards women. Blind procrastination might be fashionable but not very logical and beneficial thing to do in long run. So careful study and assessment of Indian religion can help in liberating India women, contrary to popular beliefs.

Jijabai played instrumental role in developing political acumen of Shivaji. Kiran Bedi, Sushma Swaraj or Medha Patkar have been playing significant role in active and social politics for quiet some time now. Rani Padamini and Laxmi Bai (Jhansi ke Rani) have done something beyond bravery, backed by their deep political acumen and support from all corners of then totally male dominated society. No where in the world, Women have been politically active since time immoral, except in India. Even now the most powerful and important positions in Indian Politics are up for grabs for the intelligent,  educated, liberal and politically astute Women of India. Ironical the fierce competition is from not so educated segment though, which further reaffirms that the Indian masses are welcoming towards women ready to lead.

GDP of India is under estimated, because the contribution of almost 25% of India population, i.e Housewives working at their own will, out of happiness, compassion and sometimes even forcefully is not properly accounted for. Indian housewives have mastered the art of running a big family with a small budget. Thanks to the housewives, the wastage of food, energy or any resources are minimal and the cost of living is one of the lowest in the world. This peer to peer training has equipped Indian housewives with some of remarkable lessons about balancing budget deficit, arts, handicraft, running business in spare time to managing large family spread all over India. Unfortunately we the Thankless males have never appreciated the enormous, free of cost services which Indian women have been rendering to our society and country for eons. But now with changing times, in the age of information explosion and easing communication, Indian housewives are leveraging lessons learnt while running home to successfully run several Small Medium businesses, home grown businesses escalating right upto the top of the pyramid.

The influx of information has temporarily confused the Indian women and men about the essence of being India. But now, more then men, the Indian women are adapting local traditions and values. They are busy weaving the net which will safeguard the uniqueness of being an Indian women without any hesitation to borrow and adapt ideas from other cultures.

Where lies the need for Change - A bit in the Attitude of the modern, educated women towards rituals, customs and towards the voice of uneducated, home ridden women. A bigger need of the hour is to change, educate the males of this country. Both the sections need to revisit our value systems, understand our identity and appreciate that rapes, oppression, eve-teasing and several such heinous crimes are not attributed to Indian-ness. We have to appreciate that Being India is confusing in itself, so being and remaining an Indian Women is a daunting task which only Indian women have been blessed to undertake. Though its important to improve the Law & Order conditions to ensure the safety and security of girls and women, but if we, the Indian males can change our mindset a little bit, miracles can happen overnight.

The democratic chaos, the religious equality, the traditions and deep rooted family support are some of the critical and unique aspects which will put the Indian women in the driver's seat, in the Years ahead. We will see many more successful Women working cohesively with the entire society to shape the future, which world will look upon to.

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

3rd Front in 2014 !

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Or before ?

Celebrations are going on. The elections in 5 states represent the biggest election of this year. But neither BJP nor Congress is able to enjoy these celebrations. While we the people are not embracing the reincarnated extended Gandhi family,  the perennial opposition is not able to put up a strong case either. Leadership crisis is evident across all the parties and everybody seems to be cautious, trying to remain politically correct, not to offend anybody. The Political stalwarts are eagerly waiting for the results and will be willing to form alliance with old time foes. Politics has always been a leveler especially in India, where everything and anything is compromised so as to gain power. Nobody leaves any opportunity to malign everybody and anybody and yet post polls, nobody minds anything and everything that has been said during the run to the polls.

With regional parties gaining more and more power, relevance and seats, the national parties i.e the BJP and the Congress despite all their efforts in state polls in past decade are still forced/required to support a local party in most of the states, especially in the recently conducted state polls which are also termed as Semifinal for 2014!

Unless the two national parties do some real good work in the field, over and above spending millions of $ during the election campaign, I guess we are heading for a hung parliament or perhaps a Third front government   led by TMC, NCP or SP in near future! Though there has always been significant difference in the dynamics of Politics during State and Central elections but for sure both BJP & Congress secretly dream and hoped for miracle to happen till yesterday.

But Today has once again taught us the simple lesson that Yesterday, the history, might not repeat itself tomorrow and nobody can foretell what might happen day after.

Thursday, March 01, 2012

A Career in Sales - What to Expect (And Not too) !!

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Yeah I know a bit, but No, I am no expert. Just had the opportunity to sell goods and services to people and organizations. This post is not about how to make or break into sales. Sales mean different things to different people. Below are some of the things which I learnt all the way along. The list is not exhaustive because I haven't exhausted yet :)

Statutory Warning: This post has nothing to do with Grand, 97.895% Sale running on Malls near you.

What TO Expect 

1. Be ready to wait for hours outside your clients office. Humility is what sales teaches you. Beware staying for extended hours at client's office can make you feel like you their employee.

2. Pressure cooker. That's what you will feel about your head from time to time. So devise your own ways to de-steam yourself.

3. Shifting goal posts. Yeah, your target, territory and sometimes even what you are supposed to sell will also change, several times in a year.

4. Thankless people. Everybody from Marketing, Operations to HR to Project Management to Supply Chain will be ready  to take credit for your sales. Some might even go to the extent saying that all our Sales guys are useless, if I (respective department) was not there, they (we the Sales guys) will close this company.

5. Coffee, Cigarette and all that Jazz. You tend to take yourself all too seriously and start filling your lungs and lever with all that Jazz. Beware and dont overdo ways and means suggested in point no.2 above.

6. Baby Sitting. The people around you will always expect you to do a lot more then what you are doing. You might enjoy the late night parties and free booz, in lieu you will be expected to baby sit a lot of grown up babies.

What NOT TO Expect 

1. Don't think that because you are in Sales, you can actually sell everything as they show in movies !!

2. Don't expect that people will respect you immediately, because you are in sales.

3. Don't think that you will start cracking those multi-million dollar deals just because you are dressed like a Hollywood star or a Diva.

4. Yeah, they don't give those big cabins and car keys to you, especially if you are in industrial sales.

5. Don't expect to get big sales commission from the day one because your boss know how to set targets.

6. Don't expect the Techies in your company to respect you, because they worked on a project you won.

PS: You may think that you know everything about sales. But what you don't know is that you know what you don't know.