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The Times of India CG, Carried this Career Kolaveri Di story January 10, 2012

Posted by aglakadam in aglakadam, Career News And updates.
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Tips from Kolaveri Di to secure your career

While the nation is effervescently rhyming with the beats of Tamil song “Why this Kolaveri di?” there is this monster called recession silently trying to make inroads into our happiness. The United Nations has set the scarecrow in action by projecting that the world economy is likely to further slowdown in 2012. UN’s World Economic Situation and Prospects 2012 report has cut the global growth forecast for next year to 2.6% from 4% in 2010.

Think of the word recession and the “dirty picture” of “job cuts” & “layoffs” gets displayed on our memory screen. Unemployment has become almost synonymous with recession. The country has managed to wriggle out of the 2008 subprime fiasco and I am sure we are not prepared to face yet another era of slowdown blues. The fact is that at an individual level one cannot do much to stop the impending slump as it is a global issue. What do you do, when you cannot change the circumstances? Change yourself, Isn’t it? Getting scared is not enough, one should switch on the career saver strategies at work. The million dollar question is “what changes in work behavior would help an individual to safeguard career?”.
Here I present some lessons drawn from the song Kolaveri di which suggests how to make our career recession proof.

Be Innovative & Creative :


Tough times never last but innovative people do. The innovative exposition of the song Kolaveri makes it recognisable. People of all ages might not like the song but none can stop it from getting registered in the brain cells. Likewise an innovative employee has multiple strengths. Such a person is often looked upon to by the management whenever there is a challenging situation. Be creative and keep delivering results. A crisis saver in the organization never gets a pink slip.

Be Different

You will agree that the song Kolaveri is absolutely different. Right from lyrics to video the song is incommensurable. When the business does not see a growth with and routine strategies go bust, companies are forced to be different. In the cluttered market place it is imperative to stand apart from the crowd. When recession strikes and job cuts are on card, the first to be sacked are the commoners, the one’s who are not distinguished. It is strongly advised to be identified as a person with exceptional skill sets. Being different in approach could be a career saver skill for you.

Be in rhythm :

“Why this Kolaveri di? is a song full of meaningless sentences ( if any) but still sounds interesting. Even the absurdity of words rhyme with the flow of the song and that’s the key reason behind its success. Come to the corporate world and there are times when logistics do not work out the way one desires. You might want to execute some strategy but the management might be planning something else. When times are not smooth never break the rhythm, try to ride the wave till you hit the shore. Your being in sync with the organizational tune will help you propitiate the management. Essence is to shed all inhibitions, learn to be different and still be in the organizational rhythm.

Be Fast :
It is said that the lyrics of Kolaveri Di got scribbled just in about 20 minutes. Even the song was released before the scheduled release date. The message drawn is “be fast, be first”. To insulate ones career from the shock of recession it is mandatory to be smart, swift and efficient. You are less likely to face the heat of slump if you are ahead of others in the organization. Being quick in your response will help you insinuate yourself into the managements perception. Admonition here is be quick but never be hasty in your actions.

Be involved :
It’s important to be involved in your work. Love your work. Be persistent even when things do not go your way. Generally employees preempt doom and prematurely start behaving desperate. Do not give in to peer grape wine. An organization is always keen to survive out of the tide. Job cut is one of the tools used to save cost but generally it is not the first to be used. There are many other interventions related to inventory and financial austerity which an organization deploys first.

Ajit Varwandkar
Feedback : md@fsindia.in

Next Time December 31, 2011

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Next Week, Next Level

Happy New Year 2012 to all the readers.

Life keeps moving, irrespective of the days and the dates. We keep accommodating our wishes and actions as per the current realities. You surely have dreams to achieve. What looked achievable and easy at the start, sometimes becomes elusive way ahead.. What was a desire some months back gets thrown out of the priority list. A friend of mine quipped yesterday, “This year no resolutions for me. Enough is enough, I am now scared of the avalanche of false promises accumulated year after year. I won’t have this monkey on my back anymore.”

…………………..  Complete write-up in my forthcoming book…. for announcement on the book title and launch, pl keep visiting www.aglakadam.com  ……………………………………… 

 

Happy Next Level to all of you…

Best Wishes. God Bless You all.

 Ajit Varwandkar

Feedback : md@fsindia.in

Cut short that Short cut December 26, 2011

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Cut short that Short cut

Computing in the new age is evolving every new day. A new invention today renders yesterday’s technology obsolete and a modish tool becomes tacky in no time. All those who use these devices surely have experienced the insidious nuances of virus infection. A media report tells that there are more than 75 lac computer viruses in the cyber world. Almost a ton of new furtive viruses take birth on the net every day. Still more heartening is to know that there are certain miscreant techies who not only misuse their grey cells to create new formats of viruses but also simultaneously develop virus protection tools for commercial use. Sounds over smart, and also short term, isn’t it?

I am reminded of an anecdote

…………………..  Complete write-up in my forthcoming book…. for announcement on the book title and launch, pl keep visiting www.aglakadam.com  ……………………………………… 

 

Ajit Varwandkar

Feedback : md@fsindia.in

FDI – Future Deserves Innovation December 17, 2011

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       FDI – Future Deserves Innovation

A lot has been talked about and discussed regarding the introduction of FDI ( Foreign Direct Investment ) in the Indian retail segment. A media research report states that out of 125 crore plus people living in India not more than 0.75% of this population is likely to be in the business of small size trading / grocery or retail store business. Almost 50% of the nation directly survives on agricultural revenue in our country. What farmers sell at rupee 1 gets sold to the end customer at about Rs.4/- on account of the long drawn delivery chain. If the multinational retail stores are allowed to operate in India (under strict monitoring & guidelines), they would help farmers get a better return for their produce and also the common man is likely to save a lot in terms of monthly grocery budget. However this is not happening now. There has been myriad reaction to the proposal and the government has suspended this decision for the time being. Please note that through this article I do not intend to either support or criticize the decision on multi brand retail FDI related policy. Sometimes resistance to change ultimately converts into compulsion to react. Idea is to read between the lines and understand the vital importance of change and innovation in today’s business lifestyle.

…………………..  Complete write-up in my forthcoming book…. for announcement on the book title and launch, pl keep visiting www.aglakadam.com  ……………………………………… 

 

Ajit Varwandkar

Email : md@fsindia.in

Parents – be your child’s first career coach December 12, 2011

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Parents – be your child’s first career coach

My last week’s blog post “If your child is at the career cross road” evoked a sweet and sour response. I got many calls from readers telling why they intended to debate on some of the parenting views referred by me. Most of the responses came from the rich and the able. One gentleman said it’s about giving the best academic amenities to the child. One doctor opined that in today’s era parent’s cannot track the likes and personality of their child.  One PSU employee could not digest my statement that “excess concern about child’s career borders paranoia”. A school teacher called me to thank for the write-up, she suggested me to elaborate on the subject and hence this sequel.

For those who might have missed the last week’s write-up I recapitulate the essence.

When at career crossroads, a child is in an very sensitive stage of evolution because career decisions bear a significant impact on one’s life. Children ought to select the career which they are desperate for and not the one which gratifies parents unfulfilled ambitious. However in the process of guiding the child parents should ensure that they guard her individuality & self esteem. Irrelevant tinkering into their space will only display a lack of trust and surely backfire. Too much involvement as well as too less involvement in child’s career building process is harmful. Parents must play the role of a light house & a guide post. The light which they show should enable the child to take a career leap and also warn when there is danger.  The student should be encouraged to take informed career decisions for a prosperous future.

 

Parents are child’s first career coach and there are certain basic fundamental rules which a parent must adhere while career mentoring the child. The messages which a parent delivers can impact the educational and career choices of the student significantly. As per one survey, almost 80% of  high school students stated that they look upon to their parents when it comes to career selection guidance. Children are very smart at observation and they learn a lot from the work behavior of their parents and other adult role models.

 

Children who are particularly gifted & super talented present unique set of challenges. We come across parent’s who boast of their child being much advanced in terms of technology. The frequently orated sentence by parents is: “My son is so smart, give him the latest model of mobile handset and he will not take more than a few minutes to explore all the features and apps tucked into it.” This brings a pseudo sense of overconfidence into the parents. Career selection is different to dissection of a technical device. It is important for parent’s to understand that their children might sound hi-tech & advanced but when it comes to career decisions, they might fail to take mature steps.

 

Parental involvement should neither be too high nor too low.  Appropriate and inappropriate levels of involvement can either help or hinder the childs career takeoff. A balanced intervention can deliver positive attitude in the student which in turn will ensure better grades and effective decision-making skills.  Decisions related to career swing around the fulcrum of family idiosyncrasies and students personality. In situations of dilemma, some parents offer unconditional support to whatever career choice the ward might opt for.  This happens to be a well intentioned but a mal functioning strategy most of the time.  A child  might be capable of doing many type of jobs but in case she enters into a world irrelevant to her personality, there could be sinister consequences.   Ideally at every such stage parent should offer two or three well researched choices and then leave it up to the ward to identify the most suitable out of those.

 

The key to a successful career is being happy and fulfilled at the end of the day. This can be achieved when there is a proper match between child’s interests, values, skills and abilities with the professional demands of chosen career. Being potentially influential in the career development process of their children, parents should know to explore and use career information properly. They should take interest to identify the potentials and abilities in their children and bridge it appropriately.

 

Lessons for Excellence :

 

  • Always share closed ended solutions with your child, never leave them wondering in the wild when it comes to career decisions.
  • Parents should encourage their children to day-dream more and more about their fancied job and develop an inventory of career dreams.
  • Never forget to ask your child to have fun, in the zest to get a perfect student out of their child most of the parents forget the sports needs of their children.
  • A successful parents is open to learn new things and accept the everchanging career scope around.
  • Be open to discussions with your child, even if he has an eccentric career choice!

 

Ajit Varwandkar

 

Feedback : md@fsindia.in

If your child is at the career cross road December 3, 2011

Posted by aglakadam in aglakadam, career guidance and counselling.
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If your child is at the career cross road

Recently I attended a marriage reception. These wedding parties sometimes give you the feel of getting stranded at a fuel station. You have to stand in the long queue near the stage and wait for your turn to greet the newlywed couple!  It was 9.00 pm in the late evening and I was somehow killing time in the queue. I was anxious to dispose-off the bouquet at the earliest.

I realized someone was throwing a smile at me. It was the parent of one of the school student who had once upon a time appeared for a career guidance & counseling session with me in my office. On that very spot, standing in the queue, the concerned parents threw rapid fire round of questions at me. Sir, I want to see my daughter as an engineer, can you tell us which all colleges outside our state should we target? How should she be preparing for the examinations? Some study tips from you will really be helpful for my daughter to excel in her career, so on and so forth…..

I could see the agony in the eyes of the child. After a while I could even register a sense of embarrassment on the face of the kid. Definitely she did not want to be bothered on career selection and study tips while in the party. Any child will not like this. Parent of this student were a bit too concerned about her career. Excess concern borders paranoia. 

Many parents complain about their child’s education & career consciousness in multiple variants. A few shared here: “My child does not share his interests with me.”, “I am ready to help him but he is never keen to take our support.”, “The child is introvert at home and extrovert in school.”, “He is so stubborn when it comes to career selection and does not give us a damn.”.  

If your child is at a career crossroad she is at a very sensitive career stage. It is really rightful for the parent to be bothered about their ward’s career. It is also of utmost importance to respect the child’s individuality and give her space. I have observed that in the process of imparting right career directions to their children many parents intrude into their creativity and independence. Such attempts either miss fires or worst back fires. Such illegitimate intrusions are harmful not just for the child and the parent but also for the society.

Too much involvement in child’s career building process is equally harmful as too less involvement is. Some parents make an open offer to their children. They say, “Go ahead and do whatever you want to, we will support you”.  This decision to respect the child’s decision is really good but not really fruitful. It is the moral responsibility of the parent to first suggest a few career options and then ask the child to make a career choice. It is vital to note at this stage that before making any suggestion, child should be thoroughly accessed on interest, aptitude and abilities. Careers matching with these parameters should then be suggested to the child. If required support of professional counselors should necessarily be sought.

As per one survey an average student in India spends not more than 4 hours throughout the school life planning for life’s career decisions. Majority of the students are simply not aware of the various career options available in the society!   On the contrary they spend more than 20 hours on selecting the bike / scooty and about 50 hours selecting a house.

Career decision has a big significance in one’s life. Students should be encouraged to think on the following questions while they are crossing the middle school : “What should I do in my life?”, “what is my career inspiration”,  “what are my most liked and most disliked career streams”, “How & when should I plan my career?” When the student starts addressing these questions, we can be sure that she has started climbing the ladder of career success.

I believe that every single student has the potential to become successful in life. Parents should play the role of a light house & a guide post. They should shower enough light for the child to take a leap and also warn when there is danger.  Their support & guidance should enable the student to take informed career decisions & prepare well for future.

LESSONS FOR EXCELLENCE :

  • Failing to plan for child’s career is nothing but planning to see your child fail in her career.
  • In the process of guiding your child please ensure that you guard her self esteem. Irrelevant tinkering into her aspiration will only make her restless, insecure and insincere.
  • It is important for the parent to be self aware about career choices and be confidant about happenings in life, only then the child will inculcate these attributes.
  • Over indulgence by parent into child’s choices might display lack of trust. Beware.
  • Law of career success states that the child should select the career which she is desperate for and not the one which her parents were ambitious for at some point of time.

 

By : Ajit Varwandkar

Feedback : md@fsindia.in

When opportunities knock, don’t be sleeping on the couch November 26, 2011

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  When opportunities knock, don’t be sleeping on the couch

Recently news about a reputed airline company cancelling flights occupied the media headline space prominently. This aero business company suddenly realized that it was in a horrendous loss of more than Rs. 1000 crore. The high-profile chief executive of the company approached the government heads requesting bailout! It was as if the airline was unaware of the impending crisis! …….

 

…………….  Complete write-up in my forthcoming book…. for announcement on the book title and launch, pl keep visiting www.aglakadam.com  ………………………………………  Ajit Varwandkar

Feedback : md@fsindia.in

Passion is the hinge on the door to success November 19, 2011

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Passion is the hinge on the door to success

If there was a doctor to write a prescription for success, the top on the list would be a strong dose of passion, to be taken lifelong! Passon is the key which unlocks the door to success. Those who had enough passion to defeat difficulties, made it real big in life. Those who did not believe in the word passion, surfaced but subsided eventually like a wave! Lessons from successful entrepreneurs and professionals help us to reinforce our belief on these universally established concepts. Presenting some inputs from the lives of the following three personalities Nasiruddin Shah, Sanjeev Bhikchandani and A M Naik.

In a radio interview Nasiruddin Shah, the famous film actor, shared about his journey to success. …………………..  Complete write-up in my forthcoming book…. for announcement on the book title and launch, pl keep visiting www.aglakadam.com  ……………………………………… 

 

Ajit Varwandkar

Email : md@fsindia.in

These children are brand ambassadors of strength November 12, 2011

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These children are brand ambassadors of strength

Our state Chhattisgarh celebrated its eleventh state formation day by organizing a state level fest in Raipur called Rajyotsav-2011. In between 1st Nov’2011 and  5th Nov’2011 people from all across the state gathered in huge numbers to this expo. It was an influx of almost one lack footfalls each day.

Luck struck fair for me and I got to make my presence usefully registered on this occasion. Higher Education Department of the State Government of Chhattisgarh organized a unique reality show named as “Nano Career Guidance- ON THE SPOT”. I was given the responsibility to counsel students and extend guidance in this show. In the course of these five days more than 600 students visited us. Apparently the students who visited had an inconspicuous personality but still each one of them carried a unique history. When I spoke to the students at length I understood more about life. Some students had some characteristics so special about them that one could draw a heavy dose of inspiration out if it. I present here the real life stories of a few such students.

The first story is of Dhanesh Sahu who belongs to a small village near Raigarh. He scored 87% marks in class XIIth examination. His father is a cycle rickshaw puller and mother works as a house maid. He has two sisters. Father is a drunkard and has articulated a hell in their daily life out of his bad habit. Dhanesh had appeared for pre engineering entrance and qualified to join a reputed engineering college. However he consciously decided not to take admission into engineering because his financial & family situations did not support his education. He knows he will not have enough time and money to get an engineering degree from a full-time course college.

The most appreciable part of Dhanesh’s story is that his dream & desire to become an engineer is intact with him in spite of acute constraints in life. According to him “lack of motivation” is the first commuter which starts running along with an individual as soon as he steps on the lane of problems in life. Always stand directly under the “sun rays of motivation” so that the “shadow of second thoughts” is never seen. He has already acquired the qualification of ITI and has started working with an engineering organization as a machinist. I will work for two years, earn some money for myself and then attempt to become a diploma engineer. He says “When I get enough money to sustain myself I will surely study to become an engineer in life!”

Second story to share is that of Ramashankar. With a B.Com degree in hand Ramashankar is currently pursuing his management course. He has the responsibility to support his family. Lack of financial stability compels him to earn money simultaneously along with his education. He lost his father when he was a small kid and has been into some or the other kind of occupation since those days. What distinguishes him from others is the fact that he is also working as a waiter in one of the hotels in Chhattisgarh. He’s highly inspired by Amitabh Bachchan and refuses to accept tip from his customer’s who visit the restaurant, a la Vijay in the bollywood movie “Deewar”, ‘fenke hue paise mai aaj bhi nahi leta’ ( I do not accept the fee amount,  if a person throws maney towards me ). In his words, “My only challenge is the situation when I have to serve food to my colleagues as a waiter in the restaurant. However I have no complaints, my duty is to make every situation in my stride!”

Third story is of a blind girl. She lives in one of the blind girls hostel in the city. I was exhilarated to know that this girl was pursuing her Masters in Arts. It had been a tough journey for her to reach this stage in her academic career and this was not the end of road for her. She visited us at the career guidance fare to know about the future prospects of career growth for her. Her blindness, so far, has never interfered in her aspirations. The girl says she is happy in her life and her face radiates the pleasantness. Meeting her reminds me of the miraculous achievements of Helen Keller, in her words :

They took away what should have been my eyes    
(But I remembered Milton’s Paradise).

They took away what should have been my ears,    
(Beethoven came and wiped away my tears).

They took away what should have been my tongue,            
            (But I had talked with God when I was young).

He would not let them take away my soul –  
Possessing that, I still possess the whole.

Friends there are many such children around us who have demonstrated extraordinary courage and commitment in order to make life worth living. These are the hero’s who have defeated deprivation. Such children are surely the brand ambassadors of strength and will power. My salute to them.

LESSONS FOR EXCELLENCE :

  • Success and Failure have no direct relation with ones financial background.
  • Winners focus on the possibilities and not on the limitations.
  • Champion is determined by dreams, not excuses.
  • If you choose to stay motivated in life, one morning you will get up happier.
  • If you have the necessary will, you will surely find the rightful way.

(PS. I have changed the names of children in the stories to respect their individuality)

Ajit Varwandkar

Feedback : md@fsindia.in

Never write-off anyone in life November 5, 2011

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Never write-off anyone in life

I have been a keen cricket enthusiast right from my school days.  It’s an all together different fact that I was never considered as a useful cricket player by my friends. In those day’s children who were not considered good either at batting or at bowling but still insisted to play along with others on the ground were asked to stand behind the stumps or at short mid on or at third man position. When the number of players were more than 11 I had to sit in the pavilion and do the score counting job. As such most of the times I used to play as a wicket keeper and never bothered about the partial treatment being given to me.  I loved the game and used to enjoy it a lot.

I share an incidence which turned around my image as a cricketer in my locality.

…………………..  Complete write-up in my forthcoming book…. for announcement on the book title and launch, pl keep visiting www.aglakadam.com  ……………………………………… 

Failure should be considered as a relearning detour.

Feedback : Ajit Varwandkar

 Email : md@fsindia.in