The Talent Bandwagon

Me introducing Ajay Kulkarni will be a little too much. 🙂

Some one who is from Nagpur and did his SSC/HSSC between years 1997-2000 might already know him as a meritorious student. His background and illustrious career so far speaks about his talent, knowledge and intelligence. If Ajay doesn’t start his own venture, I’m sure we are talking here to some one who’s gonna go very high up the corporate ladder. Enjoy your share of vision. 🙂

Somalwar. BITS Pilani. ST Micro. SP Jain school of Management. That looks like one hell of a journey. How has it been? What next?

Yeah, it has been an exciting and eventful journey full of learning from peers, seniors and from my own mistakes. The best part of this journey was BITS Pilani. Those were the years that groomed my personality and I am happy BITS happened to me. The most important part of getting into good schools and working at brand name companies is the kind of people you meet and the network you create. It is your asset which you can leverage at any point of time in life.

What next, well I am looking forward to working at a startup company into the upcoming field of digital marketing. Lets see how that works out… Continue reading

Epicurean!

Kidakaka, or Prasad Ajinkya is known to me through CE. The title of this post is how he describes himself. He has kept his introduction on his blog relatively short. So even I’d not say too many things about him. Enjoy the interview… and do read his blog. It is interesting!

Q. Prasad, frankly I’m a bit scared of the IIT/IIM brand of people. I’m a little apprehensive of them and some how find them difficult to handle. However you have been a nice guy all through out. Tell me, how it feels like being an IIMite.

A. When I was a student, it used to be an exhilarating feeling … to be counted as the creme-de-la-creme of the nation’s talent. However, as time went by and with some years of experience – working with other IIM grads and even managing some of them, I realized that this identity of being an IIM grad can often manifest itself in the form of arrogance. That path can lead to some pretty unpleasant bends. I try not to tread this path. Continue reading

Catty Eyed Dreamer!

Sapna Katti! Now I don’t know what I should write about this girl who I have never met. If I tell you exactly how we got introduced, it would sound as if I’m Shahrukh Khan. But let me tell you any way. It was June 2008 when I got my first fan mail. I was barely into a month of regular writing and a girl had already written to me, telling me how good my blog was. Frankly speaking this engineer who now works in an investment banking firm is a much better writer than me. Here’s Sapna Katti unplugged for you. Enjoy Season Two! Continue reading

Testing Times

This post is on a very special request from Saandeep. Well, you know him by the name of Sandy on my blog, by the name of Raj on his blog and by a very unique name of English-Scared on CE. His real name is Saandeep Sreerambatla and he is from Hyderabad. And do you know why the special request to post it today came in? Because it is his birthday today. Happy Birthday Sandy! Enjoy!

Can you tell me why do most people from Southern India have long names?

Southern names are long, but coming to Andhra Pradesh they are a bit shorter. In Chennai the names are even long. Since we have a surname and 2 or 3 names.

Here goes the process of naming a kid, you have grand ma, grandfather etc etc… So the naming will be modern and yet mixing of all their names. For example, I have my cousin whose grandfather name is Venkateshwarlu , father’s name is RamanaRao, and his name is Venkata Ramana Veeraju , and he has a surname also 🙂 Continue reading

Interviewing Me?

Microphone

Image by visual.dichotomy via Flickr

Some one sent me an email asking if he can interview me and post it on his blog. Wow! I’m so excited. My interview is going to be published on a popular blog.

🙂

Would you like to say that sentence above? Well, now you have a chance. I’ve been reading lot of blogs lately and had been talking to lot of people. And talking to people fascinates me. So I have decided to logically extend it to my blog. I’d like to interview (un)common people like you and me and publish the interviews here. Let me tell you that they are not going to be run of the mill interviews with ‘tell me about yourself’ type of questions. There will be specific questions, some direct, some wacky, some weird, some controversial and some very very personal questions. The idea will be to invoke an emotion (reaction), mostly laughter.

So if you are a reader of this blog (and I know it), you are already eligible for the interview. There is every chance that I will shortly get in touch with you. But just to ensure that I dont, please put in a comment here so that I can prioritise your name.  🙂

… And if you are NOT a reader of this blog and have come here for the first time, no worries. Good things happen to people a bit late. So let us start with YOU first. Would you like to be the YOU?


Professionally unprofessional

An umpteenth company rejected my application for a job today. No surprises for me. Most of the times I go to companies to get rejected. Anyway, I’m narrating you a sequence of events of my job interview an extremely professional IT company (as they are known outside. They are US based) and their unprofessional ways when it comes to rejecting.

Nov. 3 2008: I receive a call from the recruitment manager of this ‘professional company’ where I’m breifed about the role and screened for a skill sets match. I’m called for a personal round the next day.

Nov. 4 2008: I reach there at the stipulated time only to find the recruiting manager out of office. I’m told he is on his way and some one else will attend you. Then after waiting for half an hour and repeated reminders, some other HR personnel asks me to appear for a test. I protest but agree to take it. Following the test, I’m interviewed by some guy, who I identify as a sales executive. I wonder, if I’m being hired as a manager, why is a junior guy interviewing me? Finally I get to meet the recruitment manager of this ‘professional company’ who makes me fill out a form and tells me that they will get back to me in 2 days.

Nov. 7 2008: I write the manager back, asking for a polite feed back. ON the same day evening, he sends me an email saying I was rejected and apologises for it. I’m obviously surprised, but ask him a feedback as to what went wrong.

Nov. 10 2008: I get a mail from the same manager telling me they found my English inappropiate. I’m surprised. Upon asking, he tells me that its not how ‘Americans’ like it. I thank him and feel that I was indeed lucky.

Nov. 13 2008: I get a call from the same manager from the ‘professional company’ offering me a second chance to qualify myself. I decide to honor the call for a good will, but clarify the profile before hand. I’m called the next day.

Nov. 14 2008: This time I ned up waiting for an hour before I’m given a chance to improve upon my earlier test. On asking, I’m told that the test is the part of the recruitment process. (Basically it required me to compile answers to questions featuring in a typical proposal document. It also had a creative writing section.) I’m again told that they will get back to me.

Nov. 27 2008: AFter few reminder mails and two calls, I finally hear from the ‘professional company’. The manager tells me that I will get a call from a director based in Bangalore, India. He calls on the same day. We spend another 85 minutes on phone discussing about me, about the role, the company, global market, recession etc. Finally he says I’m shortlisted and I shall hear from the HR shortly. I dont!

Dec. 8 2008: After umpteenth reminder, I get to know that I was rejected. No reasons given, no explanations offered.

After a month long procedure, I was told I’m not suitable. To be very frank, I didn’t understand what they were assessing in me. I feel I was hard done by so called ‘professional company’

Me and job offers

Yesterday, a distant friend called me up and asked if I could refer him for a sales job in some company. He was even willing to do door to door sales. Sadly, he was a victim of lay offs from an MNC, thanks to latest crash of American economy (I know the economy hasn’t crashed. But I’m optimistic) :mrgreen:

Interestingly, he was the same guy who mocked at my luck saying how incompetent I was to crack job interviews at multi million dollar corporations with 10,000 goats tied at different desks. Well, and he came to me yesterday because the same company no longer needed him. So much for a secure job 🙂

Its not about him, there are enough other people who ask me why did I change 4 jobs or why haven’t I worked with big brand names. I have a simple answer, we couldn’t get along. I have a goal for me. And I try to align that goal with the organization who considers me or employs me. If I feel the mismatch, I don’t go there or I leave them. I can not work with people who are just working or sitting in their offices for the heck of doing it. Such are the people who dwarf the growth of the company. And I have no time to waste on morons. Life is too short, I need to learn a lot and climb to where my destiny lies.

Quoting a recent experience with a CFO of a mid sized (by their definition) company. Right from the moment he said hello to me, he was down right rude from the word go. He had a problem with me switching jobs. He had a lady who called herself the HR head of company. And then poor fellow me was grilled and stressed, almost coerced to accept that by working in a company for only a year, I behaved in an unethical manner. Because I just gained whatever knowledge I wanted to and moved on. I some how knew all my explanations would fall flat on the table. So I said this, “Mr. <snip>, forget my ethics… you run an off shore software development shop. Are you not stealing jobs of innocent Americans? Is it ethical?” Bingo! The old man was taken aback. It was his turn to explain. He said most of the Americans drop out of college because its a culture there. Hence they don’t get literate resources blah blah! … And hence we are not doing any thing unethical. I said fine. Now as the interview progressed, we argued on some more things. Then came the time to throw my hot blow. I asked him why couldn’t we Indians build a Firefox or a Chrome. At his explaining best, he told me how we Indians are brought up in a culture which is service oriented. He went on and said that some American geeks conceive the products, write core architecture and send the non core activities to us. Why can’t we do it? because we are not brought up in an environment to think out of the box… they are.

Now for the knockout punch: I said Mr <snip> you just now said that there is a shortage of brainy resources in America. Now you are saying they develop the product and we provide services because we can’t conceive products. Are you not contradicting yourself? He was pissed off… and there went my offer letter. 🙂

PS: For the record, I have rejected more jobs than people who rejected me in interviews. I wish some day I find a perfect match.