Different Work Cultures!

We often come across the term 'Work Culture'. For those working directly with the clients abroad, this impacts them the most.

At our office, we work for a North American company and everyday is a new day with lots of learning in the differences of cultures. Last week a trainer had come down from the client location, who will be with us for another few months. He imparts training to us related to the domain as well as the CULTURES.

The first few things I noticed about him - unlike many of us, he is very punctual. Comes in at sharp 9 am and leaves at 6 pm. While most of us come in by 10 to 11 am and leave after 7 pm. He is always in formal clothes, very pleasant, and at his desk for most of the office hours. We, over here wear all what we like from formals to casuals, dark, bright, and florescent, are cranky at times, and finally are not at our desks for most of the time.

Few days back, we had our first training at 10 am. People kept coming in. As usual, I reached in by 10 30 and unluckily was the last! The topic was working with North American counterparts. While concluding the session he was detailing a few circumstances when he had committed mistakes. Finally he said - there's one mistake I did over here. That was to start the session at sharp 10 am. He gave us a awkward smile. I felt the more embarrassed. But something more happened to it. Our PM came in at 11 30 am. She went to his desk and wished him a lovely morning. And her next question was - we are having the session today rt? When is it? I sit next to his cubicle and hearing this question the people in the whole bay froze. He replied smiling - its already over. Perhaps an hour ago!

Phew! That was one embarrassing incident when the whole team seemed irresponsible and stupid.


Its already 11 pm. Everybody has slept and so is the whole neighborhood. I sit here all alone listening to too many sounds even when none is making any noise.

I hear the clock ticking away in speed, as if eager to complete its rounds. During the day I never notice the sound of the clock ticking. A mosquito flying past sings in its awful sound to irritate me. I hear a creaking sound every other minute when my brother turns in his bed. Perhaps the fridge thinks why should it alone be silent. Adding to the harmony, the water drops fall into the kitchen sink making that beautiful plop sound. Why should I not make noise when all these break the silence of the night. I hit hard at the keyboard as I type in each word.

Today when I go to bed, I would be content that I did not give up to the silly creatures and objects around me. And next morning when I wake up I wouldn't notice any of these sounds, neither the mosquito's songs, or the clocks. Who has time for all those once the alarm goes off? Till tomorrow night, I have so many other sounds to listen to - the traffic, children, the girls blabbering in the cafeteria, conferences and calls at office, the frying and stirring in the kitchen, the horns, the beeps and ringtones, and so on.

I wonder when would there be silence! Would I hear it as long as I am alive.

The art of Storytelling

According to me, blessed are those who have the extraordinary powers of storytelling. It requires the unique ability to blend emotions, colours, time, and space. A storyteller brings to life the characters, time, and space of a story.

All good writers and orators are good storytellers. I perhaps don't like all writers but do agree that all have unique capabilities of their own. I may not admire all storytellers but the first storyteller I admired was my Grandmother.

Like all children, I also used to insist on hearing stories of rabbits and foxes to take food or go to bed. She used to be patient enough to answer all my stupid doubts and frame up good stories and prolong it till I completed my food. I wondered why rabbits and other animals never spoke to me in everyday life. I did try talking to butterflies and cats. But none cared to answer me. My grandmother - she used to fill my world with colours, the innocence of animals, the beauty of nature, and the greatness of mankind. I still remember few stories she told me as a kid. The best one is of a porcupine who lays an egg in an old tree trunk but is unable to take it out. It goes around to different animals who refuse to help and finally a small ant is ready to help and we see in a sequence how each animal who refused earlier now help the porcupine... :-)

A few years back I asked her how she knew too many stories. She replied saying that she used to frame small stories and mix n match all those she knew of, so that I would complete my food.. :-)


My third sem results are out - Failed miserably!!! :-( Should have been more cautious. The first two times I escaped unhurt, decently. That was nothing but "pure luck". This time Lady Luck didnt smile upon me... huh! Too bad... Now got to study for two sems at one go... :'(

As a child, I was bright at studies. Used to be among the top three in class (I know most kids are). But as years passed by, the graph kept going down. I hardly realized that it was going down. Only when I had completed my XII did I realize that I had gone down. That was the first time I wished that had I been more cautious.

Then came my years of graduation - the most careless years! Studies were never a part of that period. We had no textbooks or set syllabus. Everything was ambiguous. The questions were very vast. One could go on writing for pages. But who had all those patience. I would be the first one to leave the exam hall... But this action of mine cost me heavily during the last exam (As always) :-(

But this is my first failure.. and Failure are the stepping stones to success! Hope I succeed next time... ;-)

A matter of few seconds!

One of our relative stays with us now and she works for Tata Advanced Materials, at a place called Jigani. This is somewhere on the outskirts of Bangalore and reaching there takes around an hour. She takes the company cab for her conveyance to and fro.

Last Friday she took an off and decided to work on Sunday instead. The Production dept. was working on this day and so was a good percent of the employees. But unlike every other day, she had to catch another cab today. Early morning itself, we woke up, prepared something for breakfast and was ready – she for office, and me to leave her at the bus-stop. A guy in the cab was informed that she would be waiting at the regular stop and we were told that the cab would be there by 8:05 am.

The morning was quite foggy. I had difficulty in taking her to the bus-stop but somehow we managed to reach there by 8 am. She called up the guy in the cab and to our dismay it had already passed the stop and that too a few seconds back. I knew not what to do. We called them back again and asked to stop the vehicle. The driver said it is not possible. Frustrated, we were trying to identify the bus to the route. Suddenly the guy called back and informed that the cab was waiting 200 meters ahead of our stop and gave us the cab number. Frantically I drove keeping an eye for the particular cab. 200 meters turned into kilometers. But the cab was nowhere in sight. Finally when we reached Electronics City we called up the guy again. He apologized saying the driver was not allowing stopping the cab again and left. I drove another few kilometers and left her at a junction from where she could hire an auto rickshaw. While coming back I kept a count on the number of kilometers covered. In total I drove 24 kms… First time ever in my life!

That few seconds counted heavily on my day. I had planned to take a short nap after leaving her at the bus-stop. But I reached home only at 9:15 am. It was too sunny by the time I reached. So my short nap extended to a few hours and thereby did my day.

A few seconds do really count a lot!