Posted on 26-10-2014
Filed Under (PARADOX) by Shombit

From Discomfort Zone column by Shombit Sengupta in Financial Express and Indian Express

It’s started raining on digital technology. Arriving for an early morning flight, I started rubbing my eyes at the airport. Am I sleeping or dreaming? No, it’s real! The famous Walkman inventor is cooling his newly launched mobile phone in water inside a display box to prove its unique rainproof character.

Yester-generation’s Japanese Sultan of electro-mechanical Walkman device, who was upstaged by American burger digi-tech Emperor, is trying to avoid showing commoditised digital images. Instead, with rain falling on mobile phones, Sultan is bringing back Gene Kelly’s 1950s tap dance idea, “I’m singin’ in the rain.” Apart from shapely Bollywood heroines getting rain-drenched being obvious, I don’t know whether people require phones in the water. Although Sylvio Berlusconi would love it for his bunga-bunga underwater sex parties. However throwing cold water on digi-tech reinforces my digital skeleton idea. Sultan has understood that make believe with digital image advertising is not working anymore because digi-tech is just a skeleton. So rainfall on mobile phones gives customers distinct benefit.

Another airport wait, 3 hours in Heathrow for connection to Paris, was enough to compare oversize digital screen advertisements of perfume cosmetics brands like Dior, YSL, Estee Lauder, among others. Through a dreamy route they’re taking women to planet hedonism. What was disturbing me was identifying the excessive digital effects in every advertising image: same lighting style, same post production digital retouching of a picture or footage in the computer. From the technical embellishment perspective, all the different ads resembled one another. Lots of global enterprises have still not understood that digi-tech is just a skeleton. Their digital interface is commoditising the inner value of entertainment that the masses experience, making it all look similar.

Advertising that creates make believe by manipulating or stretching a subject earlier needed some artistic sense and multiple craftsmanship. The physical shooting floor stage involving set designers, light-men, sound creators is getting obsolete now. The other day I met an old Parisian friend who makes background sound effects for films, a profession he inherited from his father. I loved his surprising magical sessions with different illogical instruments on the floor of a huge room. In front of a projection screen he’d watch the soundless movie and integrate sound into it as per the film’s action. The numerous instruments created by him looked really spectacular, like today’s installation art. Watching him skilfully chafe ultra-violet coated satin to produce a recordable swish or strangely pull wire-string on some hollow instrument to emit an obtuse howl was itself an entertaining movie. This was his livelihood and passion, which, he sorrowfully narrated, is fading. His 2 children are not interested, so his collection of sound effects instruments has rusted and become antique. He said with digital technology everything’s readymade in the digital disk so anybody can make sound effects. Just imagine, films now have no background sound differentiation.

So many artistic domains are getting massacred due to over-usage of digital technology, the killer of human passion, craftsmanship, knowhow and creative distinction.

At the same time we cannot ignore the advantage of digital content vs. celluloid film which was cumbersome, extremely costly and you had to wait a couple of days to develop the film. With digi-tech advancement, film output is instantaneous, there’s time saving, cost effectiveness and physical effort reduction. The main point is to use digi-tech as the skeleton that it is. It provides the strong base on which flesh can be added, the flesh of human skill and creativity. The human interface should not look digital.

In my branding and advertising experience in Western society, we have to have calligraphic expertise to design a brand name or effective caption. Hungarian professor Paul Gabor taught me the grammar and architecture of typography. There are 4 basics: Gothic, Roman, Antique, Elzevir. After learning these basics, with freehand drawing skill you can start making fantastic typographic work which becomes distinctive for a brand. Later from my colleague, famous French font designer Albert Boton, I learnt that font face just makes the text, not the brand. Branding requires distinctive typographic character for the brand to become iconic in time. From Bauhaus, the radical German design influencer, to Raymond Loewy, father of industrial and brand design, to celebrated designers Gordon Lippincott and Walter Landor, nobody has ever used readymade typography for brand design.

Just to illustrate, my design team and I never allow readymade fonts usage for brands we create, eg. Activia of Danone, Isio4 the famous 4-blend French cooking oil, Greek dairy brand Delta, Remy Martin’s armagnac Cles des Luc, Argentina’s Bagley biscuits, Marico’s Parachute, Britannia, Wipro, Lewis Berger, among others. Our expertise of designing by hand gives brands specific character from typography we develop so that its exact likeness cannot be found anywhere else in the globe. A brand name with its identity has to carry some timeless property which creates its authentic value. More authentic the identity creation, the better is it for commercial protection from plagiarism, for financial results, upto the brand’s deeper timelessness.

Typographic skill is given scant attention nowadays. A computer geek can quickly design a technical brand, giving you multiple font options. Every fresh marketer in Indian companies asks this from design houses to choose a brand’s typography; variety takes precedence over unique typeface expertise. Rarely would you find hand calligraphy in professional work today. Such skill and expertise are verging into oblivion, commoditizing the brand. Let’s take an analogy. Staple food like rice, wheat, pasta, bread will always be there, you cannot eat digital pasta. Similarly, creative base fundamentals will remain, digi-tech cannot and should not replace human creativity. Creative ingenuity should be allowed to flourish, with digi-tech remaining its skeleton, otherwise all artistic work will become incestuous, looking the same.

Art has always been considered a form of expressive liberation. Digital technology interface should not contaminate this artistic liberty and expression by commoditizing our individual expression and living style. I reckon 2025 will see the digital graveyard even as we embrace the digital skeleton.

Click here  : Digital skeleton To download above article in PDF

Source :  The Indian Express

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Posted on 06-04-2014
Filed Under (PARADOX) by Shombit

From Discomfort Zone column by Shombit Sengupta in Financial Express and Indian Express

Jhanjat (mess)!” is how Akash, a 35-year-old Delhite, described his family living composition. He was narrating his rigmarole family life, from his joint family to nuclear family, back to joint family which broke up to become a neo-joint family, his brother’s home then turned into an extended nuclear family.

Akash’s father was in the Railways. His mother joined Government service in Delhi where Akash grew up with his younger sister, brother and grandparents. Ten years ago they arranged his marriage to Sunita who was from a large joint family. She fitted in like a glove in his family, managing the home under directions from her mother-in-law. His sister subsequently got married and left the home, while Akash’s unmarried brother had started to earn. That’s when Akash’s office transferred him to Mumbai.

Initially Sunita was extremely hesitant. Who will cook, clean and look after the joint family she was managing? Moreover, she was nervous about unknown Mumbai city, she had never lived alone before. What would she do when Akash travels on work, as he frequently does? She procrastinated for a year, then joined him. Within 8 months she started enjoying her nuclear living style. A son was born and she passed 4 happy years in Mumbai. When Akash was transferred back to Delhi, it was somehow obvious that they would return to Akash’s joint family home. In the meantime Akash’s brother had married, his wife worked in a travel company. Akash’s father asked his first floor tenant to leave so Akash could move in. In a few years Akash’s brother was blessed with 2 children.

So theirs became a big joint family, 2 married brothers with wives, children, parents and grandparents under one roof, one kitchen. Having lived independently for a while, Akash and Sunita had become used to the Mumbai lifestyle with late night outings. Sunita was now pre-occupied with her child’s welfare and meeting her friends at daytime kitty parties. This seemed to upset Akash’s mother who expected the same docile service from her older, non-working daughter-in-law. The younger daughter-in-law evoked different expectations as she was career-oriented. Moreover, she had entered their home when the parents had become used to managing the home without Sunita. So the younger couple lived resourcefully and displayed no untoward ways his parents found unacceptable.

Returning home at untimely hours was starting to become the loosened hinge, especially as Akash’s brother’s wife was continuously reporting their late hours to the in-laws. A cold war developed between the 2 bahus (daughters-in-law), a Mumbaiwali (from Mumbai) with new attitude, the other exhibiting unstated superiority of her money earning ability, which put her in her in-laws good books. Sunita fell from grace because of her independent outlook. The 2 brothers were compatible, but Akash being the elder had to play the prophet’s role although the cold war made him uneasy. The axis finally unhinged when Sunita ordered a refrigerator for their room, not the common kitchen, and she took no one’s permission to do so.

Within a few days, Akash’s parents, wounded by the broken protocol, asked them to run their own kitchen. This severance started the neo joint family, same roof, separate kitchen. Leaving the joint family house is unimaginable, but separate kitchen is accepted nowadays. When I asked Akash why he did not move out totally, he paused, then frankly admitted he wanted his disposable income. Saving on house rent was a great advantage, even Sunita did not want quit the in-laws house.

Later Akash’s brother’s wife bought a personal room refrigerator too. She cleverly bought the smallest one, justifying the children’s milk needed it, so she faced no adverse situation with her in-laws. Her money-saving strategy was clear: share the in-laws kitchen, get them as trusted baby sitters for her children, and enjoy high disposable income. Ten years of this arrangement changed when she changed jobs to a far-off office. She convinced her husband to buy an apartment nearer her workplace, they had enough savings to do so. She got her in-laws’ empathy by explaining the sad necessity to move out. That started another nuclear family with both husband and wife working. So the 2 children alone at home would get extra pampering of material goods from guilty parents who could not spend quality time with them. Soon Akash’s brother’s wife brought in her aged parents to stay with them. According to Akash, it was her clear idea to bring her parents to stay with them, which is why she shifted her workplace and moved far away from her husband’s joint family home. This converted theirs into an extended nuclear family. That means, the house is run solely by the couple, where her parents have come to stay.

No marketing book in the world has written about factoring in this kind of Indian social jhanjat for companies to get better business revenue. The bone of contention in Akash’s joint family, the refrigerator, multiplied into 3 units. So it’s clear that identifying the fluidity in family structures and connecting to their new needs is imperative for FMCG, white and brown goods, consumer electronics, real estate and kitchenware companies, among others. India’s changing family compositions is not fiction, family splits from spats or otherwise is the way our society moves. These are real pockets of consumption.

Just consider the immense scope for product development concept to marketing: a joint family has one TV set, a neo joint family will have more depending on the number of brothers with independent kitchens, a nuclear or extended nuclear family can have TV sets even in different bedrooms. This totally non-stereotype social context cannot be handled with statistical Excel sheet data. To get unending business growth, you as the marketer require a disruptive approach; you have to sleep amidst the market’s social breath.

To download above article in PDF Family jhanjat

Financial Express link:http://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/from-the-discomfort-zone-family-jhanjat-mess/99/

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Posted on 09-03-2014
Filed Under (PARADOX) by Shombit

From Discomfort Zone column by Shombit Sengupta in Financial Express and Indian Express

It was a beautiful time in December when I first landed in the Andaman Islands. The Bay of Bengal view was enthralling; undulating mountains met the sea and merged infinitely into the sky.

But reaching our 4-star hotel, apparently the highest category in Port Blair, disappointment kept getting heaped on, from the illogically high cost of rooms being over $300 per night, even more than 5-star hotels in mainland India, to bad hotel upkeep to lack of hygiene and cleanliness. I could barely sleep the first night even in this beautiful paradise, my body was scratching. It was just better to go in front of the window to enjoy Nature’s beauty than experience the hotel’s facilities.

The next morning we suddenly came upon an unusually beautiful scene. Swaying in the sea breeze were hundreds of rows of huge white sheets hung on clothes lines stretching hundreds of meters. The sheets were neatly wedged into two intertwined tight ropes on two edges, while the other two edges were cleverly suspended in an amphitheatre of green grass that sloped down to a serene pond filled with lotus leaves. Around the pond were a few large rain trees that made the sunrays play hide-and-seek on the stark white drapery.

This vast mesmerizing scene on the road’s bend reminded me of the famous environmental art I saw in New York in 2005. Created in Central Park by artists Christo and Jean Claude, their art had bright saffron color fabric covering 37 kms of the park with 7,503 gates of five meters height. This married couple artists specialize in constructing visually impressive artistic works using reams and reams of fabric. They had wrapped the whole Parliament House in Berlin using 100,000 sq. meters of fireproof polypropylene cloth and Miami’s Biscayne Bay with 603,850 sq. meters with pink floating fabric. Theirs is vanishing art, “It takes much greater courage to create things to be gone than to create things that will remain” says Christo.

The hanging white clothes we were crossing comprised a truly stunning sight, but of course it was not an officially declared work of environmental art. It was Port Blair’s dhobi ghat (washerman’s enclosure). The large pond had flattened slabs of rock. Men facing away from the water but legs inside it were vigorously bashing huge white double bed sheets on stone slabs. They’d take the cloth from large bins that were caked with white chemicals from having been used over a long period for bleaching the cloth. Dipping these sheets into water, they’d fold each sheet, then, with biceps gleaming, thrash it forcefully. First on one side, turn it around, flog the other side, before washing off the chemicals and detergent in the pond behind them. Undoubtedly an inhuman, laborious job in today’s modern technology world.

A wall being built had a notice that claimed it to be a welfare measure of the local Government representative. The wall will certainly hide this spectacular view from tourists. Was concealing the washermen’s workplace from public gaze a reason to construct the wall? These white sheets are bed linen that tourists sleep on, so would their cleaning method disturb the tourists? After all the water was stagnant, it looked whitish next to the washermen, greenish near the lotus leaves. Directly from this water, the linen are hung up to dry and ironed in the evening before delivery within 24 hours back to the hotels.

“I have been in this business for 30 years. We have to get labour from mainland India because Andamanese are not willing to do hard work,” said Muthu who originally hails from Tamil Nadu. Even his son going to college wants a Government job rather than bash clothes. Muthu says all hotels, even the most expensive ones, use this laundry system. The dhobis charge Rs 2-4 for small items like pillow cases and Rs 7-10 for bed linen. Each hotel gives 200 to 400 sheets per day in winter so the business is good. From the clothesline I did notice the brand labels or etchings of several different Port Blair hotels in the sheets and towels. So this was the hotels’ sense of hygiene, a jugad (just-fix-it) system for laundry.

Jugad, the patch up solution I wrote about last week, is used by those who have meager resources. The dhobis in India, a caste based on their occupation have traditionally provided this service that people need. They earn a living using the resources they can muster up, which are hard work, stamina and the skill of laundering. As per age-old custom, they collect clothes from different houses, mark each household’s clothes with a unique symbol in black indelible ink, and return the washed, starched, ironed linen within a few days. We knew the flowing water streams dhobis washed the clothes in, and trusted them as a recognized part of society. However, today when we go to 4 and 5 star hotels, paying large sums of money to live as in the Western system, our expectation is that mechanical methods be used for basic jobs like clothes cleaning. That’s because washing thousands of white bed sheets every day, and that too with chemicals in a stagnant pond, is unnatural in the traditional system and clearly overstretches available traditional resources. If such hotels can pretend to provide Western comfort, why don’t they also buy a few washing machines for their laundry?

I was doubly confirmed when we found the same dhobis collecting bed linen from the hotel. So I had no choice but to buy bed and bath linen to use in the hotel. How could I put my face in the towel or bed sheet washed in that polluted water? Perhaps my itching would stop too.

Beautiful Andamans can be paradise holiday to the whole world. But this kind of jugad spirit after charging international cost is really horrible. Such jugad can destroy our tourism income instead of attracting global travellers.

To download above article in PDF Four star jugad

Financial Express link:http://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/from-the-discomfort-zone-four-star-jugaad/99/

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Posted on 02-03-2014
Filed Under (PARADOX) by Shombit

From Discomfort Zone column by Shombit Sengupta in Financial Express and Indian Express

5 o’clock in the morning. Driving to Bangalore airport with colleagues. No traffic jam at this time, but the car is moving very slowly. I was sleepy, opening my eyes just anticipating my flight time. Suddenly I blinked. Was I dreaming or was what I saw real?

A 3-wheeler auto-rickshaw in front of us was carrying a 40feet long pipe that was sticking out width-wise from both sides. He covered the whole road; no vehicle could overtake him from either side, nor could he speed with the heavy, unwieldy pipe.

Images of William Wyler’s 1959 blockbuster Ben-Hur entered my mind’s eye. In that most spectacular chariot race ever put on film, Prince Judah Ben-Hur’s devil-like friend Messala was using a saw on his chariot wheel and colliding time and again, while his four horses charged at high speed, trying to overturn Judah’s chariot. Now here was this auto-rickshaw, its destructive pipe weapon horizontally cutting the entire airspace. We were tailing it for over 30 minutes somehow trying to cross, when unexpectedly the auto-rickshaw took a sharp u turn to the right. Just imagine how it could swerve! Two troubled-looking men on the backseat were hugging the colossal pipe for dear life.

Delayed at airport arrival. A kind airline customer services manager rushed me through a special security gate at Bangalore Airport’s newly opened wing looking dreamy with soothing lights and decoration. The stylish shops reminded me of New York’s Trump Tower ground floor shopping area. Waiting in a lean queue, drops of liquid suddenly fell on me, startling me. As I ducked, I noticed a few buckets capturing driblets from the ceiling. It was not raining that day, so what was that unpredictable contamination in this high-tech airport barely a month old?

On another occasion, landing at Delhi airport, I went into the toilet. As I was habitually sitting, checking mails in my mobile phone, water suddenly gushed into my cubicle, the bottom half of my trousers became wet. Here I was, about to go for a project review meeting with the Board of Directors of an American client of mine in the sophisticated Oberoi Hotel, Gurgaon. Fortunately my dark trousers hid the wetness. I yelled at the neighbouring toilet occupant to control the health faucet water jet. He too rushed out apologising; then showed me his helplessness as the defective water jet was still overflowing. He said he obviously couldn’t have known this before he used it. We set out to look for the gentleman cleaner. We found him outside. He was clueless; he requested us to complain to the management so the defect would get rectified. In yet another Delhi airport toilet experience opposite Starbucks Cafe, I was holding my nose while entering a smelly cubicle. Suddenly I saw vapour clouds descending from the top, beautiful jasmine fragrance wafted in. I couldn’t understand how Nature became so magical, entering my cubicle to reverse the odour. When I came out it was the gentleman cleaner spraying air freshner. Undoubtedly his work was welcome but it only temporarily covered the stick. By the way, Airport Council International has named this the world’s second best airport after Seoul Incheon in South Korea. I wonder if the judges ever used the toilets here.

In semirural areas I’ve seen motorized, hand-made 3-wheeler transport contraptions like rickshaw carts with a wooded platform open on all sides. Men passengers dangle their legs from 3 sides, women and children sit on haunches in the centre. Such unofficial transport with no licence to ply can certainly fulfil the purpose of being speedier than bullock carts. But just imagine the life risk to passengers when overloaded trucks jostle alongside for road space.

The just-fix-it approach is jugad. It’s endangering, a temporary patch to a problem, a solution with no predictability, no process, no discipline. The auto-rickshaw driver transporting the 40-ft pipe will earn money because he can use his vehicle like a cart without doors. The point here is that the manufacturer is least bothered that his 3-wheeler auto-rickshaw is only a jugad delivery. It can jeopardise everyone’s safety on the road. The owner of the unscientifically motorized rural cart ingeniously found this livelihood while serving passengers with cheap transportation. We cannot fault the economically underprivileged where jugad becomes their fundamental need. But we can certainly charge those in authority for dereliction in providing the poor with opportunities to earn. Also, improper construction supervision resulted in a dripping airport ceiling, while pitiable toilet maintenance made the cleaner powerless. Both are examples of the “chalta hai (will do)” attitude of unsafe jugad. 

To prove they are at par with reputed global players, which is not the case, India’s industrialists have donated millions of dollars to their US alma mater Harvard or MIT. When there’s dire need, why not intelligently invent to meet India’s requirement of low cost, world-class, advanced livelihood machinery? If Indians don’t invent with outstanding R&D spend for our country’s needs, who will? Eg, Designing an affordable rural passenger vehicle will demolish hazardous jugad. When industry addresses this jugad phenomenon by setting examples, common people will automatically abandon their perilous jugad mentality. This is the only way our industrialisation can be based on the country’s requirement.

Most bottom level service people or workers in India earn Rs 5000 to maximum Rs 20000 per month. They cannot change their jugad mindset, which oftentimes earns them quick, extra money. The privileged class has the responsibility of changing the precarious jugad lifestyle of poor people. MacDonald’s and KFC are showing anti-jugad ways by introducing processed housekeeping standards. Even in Bangalore’s crowded, cluttered, hygienically imperfect, principal bus stand, Majestic, these foreign outlets are clean, disciplined and non-jugad where you can enjoy a low-cost but quality dinner.

I don’t see any political manifesto say, “Jugad hatao, aam admi ki jivika garima se barhau (don’t just-fix-it, uplift the common man’s livelihood with dignity).” Implementing such a goal will change our country’s face in the global field.

To download above article in PDF Danger of jugad

Financial Express link:http://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/dangers-of-jugaad/99/

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Posted on 23-02-2014
Filed Under (PARADOX) by Shombit

From Discomfort Zone column by Shombit Sengupta in Financial Express and Indian Express

“How do you differentiate between an Indian joint family and extended nuclear family when both family units have the grandparents living with them?” This was the query from the Head of Human Resources of one of my clients to whom we had advised that family living style is among the important criteria to gauge a candidate’s ability to take responsibility at work.

I’d written about India’s heterogeneous family units 3 weeks ago, how it connects to business as multi-social elements and living styles impact business, opening up avenues for purchase and human resource. Let me illustrate with different flavors of family structures.

Joint family: Simi grew up in Nainital, Uttarkhand where tourists flock to between May and August when her family hotel does peak business. Her grandparents, parents and father’s younger brother run the business. After her uncle married, things went topsy-turvy. It was an arranged marriage, her aunt was from a joint family too, but being the only daughter is probably why she was a demanding, spoilt person. Simi’s mother would cook breakfast and lunch from their single kitchen for the 11 member family before going off to her hotel duties. Pouting through the day, her aunt would intermittently keep her word about cooking dinner. Total unpredictability reigned about household basics as nobody could gauge what would upset her aunt when, or how she would react. On threatening to break up the joint family, the family gave her the money to start a beauty parlour she wanted. She selfishly pocketed the revenue, but that was no issue as the family split was avoided, not because their finances were joint but because “What would we tell the relatives and neighbours?” After Simi’s grandfather died, her aunt created a scene. She announced she’d return to her parents’ home if Simi’s parents did not move out of the house. The aunt got her way.

How did such brawls at home impact the children? Simi says that compared to her friends from nuclear families, she feels more mature. She’s learnt how to keep peace, to steer clear of rocking the boat, uphold family honour, anticipate, be patient, consider consequences before acting, shun pettiness in achieving the bigger objective, and look after the vulnerable who willy-nilly get affected. In short, she understands the value of intangibles, of building and preserving relationships as the bedrock for the future, and not to indelibly destroy hope. If you look at these characteristics in business perspective, they are desirable. The counter argument that joint family children cannot take decisions because elders run the home is negated by this aunt who wants her own way.

Living in a home with his grandparents, parents and his father’s 4 married brothers, Hemant has seen tremendous stress and strain through his 24 years. The elder boy in a joint family feels totally accountable for his younger cousins, especially the girls. Hemant’s girl cousin confides in him. She shows him the miniskirt she wears to a party, then quickly pulls up a loose salwar over it as Hemant responsibly drops her off in his motorbike. He knows he cannot reveal to the elder generation that he’s allowing this, but he cannot deny her this lifestyle as he too is doing something the elders will disapprove, he has a girlfriend who’s not of the same caste. He knows this will be his monumental problem soon.

Extended joint family: Namita lives with her parents and grandparents in Tamilnadu. Her father is the earning member who’s brought his parents to live with his nuclear family, that’s why this is an extended nuclear family. Here too, the social values of the older family members have been transferred to the children. Namita and her sister would never go against what they perceive their family would disapprove. There’s a visible demarcation between her and her friends from nuclear families. Namita says she’s more traditional in her dressing style and approach towards the opposite sex. She’ll never appear provocative, nor like her friends, spend on expensive cosmetics and perfumes. Her big worry is the caste factor. She and a boy from her college are in deep love, but social issues are putting a question mark on their happiness. He’s of a higher caste joint family, he says he loves her but has no guts to reveal his love to his parents, fearing rejection. Namita believes her father may have guessed the situation although she’s not revealed anything yet. He’s told her about their looking out for an alliance for her, and that she should not mix with young boys, especially mentioning the boy she loves. Namita’s fluid situation is unnerving her, but she says she knows that if her boyfriend has not committed marriage to her, it’s a dead end. She’s willing to risk everything, but her boyfriend’s hesitation tells her that her love will never converge because of caste. She lives in uncertainty of love which may end up in arranged marriage to someone else.

Nuclear family: Anjali’s parents had eloped, so her mother is totally banned from entering her maternal home. Subsequently, Anjali says she has no restrictions whatsoever on whom to marry. Ranjana is from a nuclear family too, but she has self-imposed discipline. She will not do what she imagines her parents will not like, but seeing her sisters marry outside their caste, she knows her boundaries are not too tight. Both these nuclear family girls are outgoing and extroverts, oozing confidence. They have chosen high-pressure careers, they burn the midnight oil at work and travel nonchalantly, zooming into different cities.

India’s social fibre is so strong that whether you are targeting a consumer or employee, the more you go in-depth to understand the microcosms of this society, the better will you understand the aptitude of your employee for recruitment or the purchase motivation of your consumer. We are all familiar with joint families, but how the young generation is confronting change is the most important aspect to discover.

To download above article in PDF Societal contradictions

Financial Express link:http://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/societal-contradictions/99/

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Posted on 02-02-2014
Filed Under (PARADOX) by Shombit

From Discomfort Zone column by Shombit Sengupta in Financial Express and Indian Express

The business potential that India’s incredible heterogeneous family compositions provide seems to have bypassed most industries. Not in Harvard Business School or in London School of Economics or INSEAD France will you learn of this societal complexity. This is the real mosaic of India. Family living arrangements drive the consumer’s purchase behavior and impact the consumer’s mindshare on a brand.

Traditionally joint families with numerous generations have lived under one shelter enjoying meals together from one kitchen. The men have blood ties while women join after marriage. Sisters vacate this family club after marriage. The same living system has continued generation after generation, but it’s diversifying now, especially in cities.

Like a new bud opening, the 1991economic reforms brought in tremendous change. The joint family doesn’t exist so inclusively anywhere in the world. Because it’s so obvious for Indians, industry doesn’t care to dwell on its significance. Global company expatriate bosses who are operating here have no clue to understand this multi-colour social fabric. From the perspective of social transformation and business opportunity, let’s look at ten living compositions that are clearly identifiable now.

1. An unmarried couple living together indulges each other with special purchases to keep romance alive. But they have no connubial rights that Indian law recognizes. Sharing the same bed they may attract disapproving frowns from close relatives or not be protected by law, but theirs is a breakthrough situation that finds new social acceptance in varying degrees. When a conservative family parent of the live-in couple comes to visit, the couple separates for some time. The parent looking for the child’s approval pretends to know nothing. Sometimes if a live-in relationship fails, the girl may malign the boy by filing a case of cheating or rape, but whether the court will uphold it is another matter.

2. When a woman has to leave home for a job in another city, she feels entered the liberty zone in her lifespan. Having temporarily escaped the family control subjugation of marriage, she experiments with everything new, spends on herself, yet never overspends her earning.

3. For boys pampered at home, they learn to fend for themselves by cooking, cleaning, washing plus going to office when living alone,. Small packs of FMCG products, white goods that ease chores, electronics that quicken work are all popular with them.

4. A young married couple where only the man is working, he gets indulgent. To enjoy his newfound happiness, he impresses his bride with goodies and trips. In this romantic stage without children, the wife wallows in this attention and spends liberally.

5. A nuclear family with children where only the husband earns, the wife controls the household. She prioritizes spend according to the children’s requirement. Being dependent, she is conscientious about the budget and does not splurge.

6. When both husband and wife are working, there’s total independence in spending. Feeling guilty for not spending quality time with children, the wife overspends to please her kids. So lots of unnecessary gadgets enter the home. This happens with DINKs (double income no kids) too. In both cases, there are many instances of extramarital affairs by both sexes in urban areas. Sometimes both know it but keep silent because of the children. The women openly share their distress, brave choice or affair with very close friends. Nevertheless, divorce is increasing. I’ve seen marriages break after a year and remarriage happening just as nonchalantly. This was indeed rare in Indian society.

7. An extended nuclear family is when a parent of husband or wife comes to stay. Suddenly, the wife has to shop differently, catering to the choice of 3 generations for all purchases from food to household linen.

8. Traditional joint families practice bulk buying for one kitchen. Each earning member contributes to running the home, whether for the common kitchen, repairs or festive spending. Housewives in joint families have revealed to me that every couple’s bedroom may have a refrigerator ostensibly for the children’s milk, but that’s where they may keep special things not shared with the full family. In this context if a working woman enters the family, problems can get created. There’s a possibility her husband may split to live separately with his working wife. From the automobile showroom I’ve heard that if a joint family member decides to buy a car, he first verifies everything accompanied by his friend. But the final purchase is theatrical. The whole family of 7 to 22 people goes to the showroom for finalization. The salesman has to pay attention to everybody. If the salesman prioritizes between influencer vs. buyer, the sale can just go for a toss.

9. The neo joint family is traditional in every respect except that the house gets divided with each brother having a separate kitchen. The entire neo-joint family periodically gets together to share a meal from their parents’ kitchen. There are subtle social and family permissible points important here. A well-to-do person once told me that when he wanted to buy a costly Mercedes, he was socially hampered because his elder brother drove a Maruti. So he had to first negotiate with their mother to convince his elder brother to buy a sophisticated car. Only then could he buy the Mercedes.

10. I once heard in a tier 3 town that retired couples living on their own are closely chased by bankers. That’s because they talk in dollars. Their children, mostly in the IT sector, live abroad and send them money regularly for their elderly parents to live and spend well.

These ten different family compositions reveal the heterogeneous mindset for living and purchase. It impacts all industries. But I’m not sure businesses and their human resource divisions in India pay enough attention to or evaluate such multi-social elements while recruiting or while selling products or services. This is the heterogeneous reflection of family composition in India. What an advantage for business!

To download above article in PDF Mosaic of heterogeneous family units

Financial Express link:http://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/a-mosaic-of-indian-families/

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Posted on 14-07-2013
Filed Under (PARADOX) by Shombit

From Discomfort Zone column by Shombit Sengupta in Financial Express and Indian Express

Flummoxed, a foreigner asked me in utter incomprehension: “Does it mean ‘Yes’ when you nod your head vertically, or when you shake your head horizontally?” In India both actions mean ‘Yes’ I said. His obvious next question was, “How do you differentiate?” Now that’s not so easy. You have to be culturally ingrained to understand the mind and body language of saying Yes.

I’ve deeply observed this Yes aspect in the last ten years in India. My habit in the West has been that people clearly choose to say Yes or No. Committing to Yes as to be 100% supported by your capability, which you can yourself measure. I’ve never faced a problem saying No when I don’t know. I’ve noticed that Americans, in particular, become enthusiastic to enlighten me if I say, “I don’t know, I want to learn.”

A few years ago, in a 360-degree, around-the-world research I did for a client, I had to meet senior management of diverse Fortune 500 companies to diagnose their industry. My client who’d fixed my meetings said none of the top business leaders had given more than 15 minutes time. So I accordingly made questions for 5 minutes only to record them in the next 10 minutes. My questions were so embedded with curiosity that I ended up spending almost two hours with my interviewees. They were engrossed and sincere in parting with knowledge. In a couple of meetings I even had to beg leave as my next appointment was already scheduled. This vast learning from global business leaders of different industries was indeed helpful for me to present my client with strategic planning inputs that allowed the client’s business to move ahead. It proved that if you sincerely admit you want to learn, it’s not a defect. It encourages those who teach to unleash their generosity.

In contrast, people in India hesitate to say No. I’ve analyzed 8 types of Yes saying reasons: Satisfying the hierarchy; Respecting elders; Complacent arrogance; Guilt; Escapism; Avoiding weakness; Fear of expression; Baggage of British colonization.

1. Satisfying the hierarchy: Saying Yes Boss without assessing one’s own capability is very common. A subordinate can be a boss to others, so this lack of capability can cascade down to several subordinate layers.  Without substantiating capability, the boss guarantees some delivery to the super-boss. If you’re the super-boss and have slept easy on your subordinate’s commitment, you could be exposing your business to grave danger. The more you delay verifying the reality of that Yes, the more business sedimentation you will create. As a boss in any layer you have to assess what’s happening behind your subordinate’s Yes factor. Otherwise don’t be surprised if things collapse!

2. Respecting elders: Our cultural nuance is to revere people older in age, without considering competence. When this stretches to the Guru, whether in music, literature or art, a learner has to respect the teacher like a god of boundaryless competence, and always be submissive. Both understand the one-way discipline, top down. The guru cannot imagine his disciple can become better than him yet subliminally the guru feels insecure.

3. Complacent arrogance: Just to prove a point, people challengingly say yes even though there’s no substance there, just make believe. This complacent arrogance to temporarily overcome a crisis without considering the long-term can have a debilitating impact.  Later when market reality emerges to the contrary, the business takes a hit. Such Yes masters disturb Indian industry in both renovation and innovation in product and service.

4. Guilt: To avoid confrontation, some people say Yes. These salaried people guiltily realize they don’t have the capability required for the job. So they camouflage the situation with glib, neutral statements that are neither negative nor positive so nobody else discovers their incompetence.

5. Escapism: It’s quite shocking when I hear managers admitting to a market mistake, but in the same breath happily pointing to their competitors making the same mistake. This amounts to escaping from the problem, shrugging off responsibility for defects, instead of correcting those deficiencies.

6. Avoiding weakness: Those incompetent at work are the best at glossing the apple. Upholding Indian tradition of obeying the superior, they affirm they’ve given the right orders. Then they turn around to blame subordinates for non-execution. This very dangerous political game of not owning up to accountability or correcting incompetence takes a company squarely into mediocrity. 

7. Fear of expression: Our feudal heritage leads to the boss becoming a lion and subordinates having little choice but to say Yes to protect their livelihood. Their mundane jobs get scant respect, their craftsmanship no appreciation. They rarely have scope to learn more. Fear of expression is the killer for the bottom and mid level working force, driving them towards hierarchy deference, and impacting operational and maintenance areas of business. If you’re oblivious to their hidden reasons, you could be waiting indefinitely without the job being done.

8. Baggage of British colonization: Colonial British influence has so weakened our country’s backbone as to make the Yes very vulnerable. Thankfully, colonial “Ji Huzoor” no longer works with the sub-30 Zap generation. Let’s hope it’ll vanish in 10-20 years, making Yes more pragmatic. One day the HR person of a client company where I’d recommended hiring Zappers to contemporarize operations complained to me. He said when the CEO wanted his computer adjusted, he called a 24-year-old IT engineer who fixed it in a jiffy. Then in innocent amazement the Zapper said, “You’re the CEO, and you didn’t even know this simple fix?” The CEO was intelligent enough to take his bewilderment positively and appreciated the youngster. But the HR person’s attitude was somewhat reminiscent of colonial days. He said these brash Zappers were disturbing the company’s work ethic and throwing protocol out the window.

Dear Reader, please let me know if you have identified more Yes nuances to add to my list.

To download above article in PDF Yes = No = Yes

Financial Express link:http://www.indianexpress.com/news/yes-no-yes/1141578/0

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Posted on 26-05-2013
Filed Under (PARADOX) by Shombit

From Discomfort Zone column by Shombit Sengupta in Financial Express and Indian Express

We’ve revered silence since childhood. Grandmother’s stories praise great sages who’ve attained Truth and enlightenment in the Himalayas. This meditative stillness is external to social interactions; it’s not communicative, it’s internal beliefs that concern nobody else. But in grappling with daily life activities, the rest of us not in the Himalayas have to contend with different genres of silence.

I’ve observed four kinds of silence that are eloquent: the silence of being indifferent, defensive and not wanting to commit ourselves, the silence of utter helplessness, the sudden silence of great happiness when you can’t express your appreciation, and the silence of grief.

Silence of indifference: When someone does not react on a hard topic addressed to him, he wants not to listen to facts, gets defensive using a shrill voice, or else he becomes silent. This is the silence of total indifference, the worst kind of response. The person does not care at all. He does not commit to anything, perhaps because, “What’s in it for me?” This character is very difficult to understand. In society or in business, silence as an individual’s strong weapon is almost impossible to gauge. When a boss practices the silence of indifference, the subordinates float in complete restlessness.

Sometimes a silently indifferent person controls a complex situation by making it indifferent. It’s a tactic of denying a subject, making it generic and disappear so everything goes for a toss. This silence of indifference can create cold war among different teams in an organization.

When people are guilty of misconduct, they often use silence as their best defence. If a person starts being defensive of mistakes, becomes arrogant then falls silent, there’s no hope of improvement. You can see he resents being corrected. Aside from instances where silence denotes agreement, silence can also stand for a variety of emotions like anger, disagreement, an attempt at self-control and fear.

Silence of helplessness: During social research, a 15-year-old girl was responding to me as though she didn’t know what to say. She took time to gather her mental impressions and express them. On the subject of girl-boy relationships, she said today’s generation is open and frank, hiding nothing, unlike the older generation. Then hesitatingly she started narrating a story, which I understood at the end was her personal story. This made me realize her silence of helplessness involved her parents’ circumstance. She discovered her mother has a boyfriend. This man’s been coming home as the girl’s private tutor since she was 10 years old. The tutor was always very nice with her, but she observed her father did not like him. During her father’s out-of-town travel, the tutor would entertain her mother and her in a restaurant.

One day turbulence erupted between her parents. She found her mother was better adjusted with her boyfriend than her father. The girl loved her father and always felt anxious for him. When the father was resigned to the situation, he took a transfer without breaking the marriage. She recounted how breaking of her parents’ marriage was unimaginable. Yet silently she was happy that her mother was so happy with the boyfriend. Her father did not interfere in her mother’s life, so she could not realize her father’s pain or what he must be doing. Actually the girl appeared quite traumatized. She had no answer of who is right or wrong. She felt totally dumb. She said she cannot talk or take anybody’s help, she just has to digest it all like a spectator. This is her silence of helplessness.

Silence of happiness: Silence is not restricted to negative expressions. When you are in love, it’s easier to slip into your senses, and attend to your partner without words. For true love to blossom you have to unscramble yourself from instant, often meaningless, information on Internet, tweets, Facebook, TV, email forwards, and be enveloped in silence. My friend, the internationally acclaimed French actor and mime Marcel Marceau had queried, ‘‘Don’t the most moving moments of our lives find us all without words?’’ He spread his “art of silence” worldwide. An art critic had said that the silence in Marcel’s pantomime accomplishes in less than two minutes what most novelists cannot do in volumes.

Silence of sadness: When you are sad, words fail you. If you want to be supportive of someone who is grieving, just be around, don’t talk, because your silence talks. A good listener encourages others to talk, share ideas and makes them feel valued. As Martin Luther King Jr. said, ‘‘We will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.’’

Actually, silence can be your most effective tool for everyday life. When a new challenge hits you, just hold your horses and make silence be your first response. Sometimes the problem can just go away while you seethe in anger or before you take some hasty action. In silence you pause, you reflect on it and intelligently increase your chances of being on target to resolve the challenge.

To download above article in PDF Genres of silence

Financial Express link:http://www.indianexpress.com/news/genres-of-silence/1120804/0

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Posted on 05-05-2013
Filed Under (PARADOX) by Shombit

From Discomfort Zone column by Shombit Sengupta in Financial Express and Indian Express

On a crisp winter day, a friend gave me an appointment to show off NCR’s famous, sophisticated shopping pattern. My hired car driver took me to a shopping mall in the indicated area, but I found nothing exceptional. After making pertinent enquiries, I realized it was another adjacent mall. Arriving at the mall’s entry point I immediately understood why my driver was not familiar with it, he drives only a lowly Corolla! My friend called to apologize; she’s running late. So I utilized her delay by watching a stunning catwalk display of shoppers as they sashayed into the mall like models alighting from premium to super luxury cars. It was spectacular.

An aerodynamic, yellow Porche Crossover glided to a stop. The driver, looking confident like he was the owner, went to open the back passenger door. A 45-year-old gentleman donning expensive sunshades emerged with a stylish swish. His trousers were glossy, hairstyle quite like Mr. Casanova. The driver brought out a jacket covered in a hanger. Very delicately the owner extracted and wore it. He walked exactly like an Italian machismo in a southern Italy beach in summer. When he crossed me, a strong whiff of perfume overtook an air pocket, lingering on in my nose for at least a couple of minutes. What amazed me was his preference of being chauffeured like royalty; my Porche-owning Western friends would never sacrifice the pleasure of driving a Porche.

Now a power-exuding white Audi Q7 made its presence felt. An elegant woman, weighing perhaps 200 kilos, came out wearing a colorful dupatta, gold Cartier cat’s eye glasses, shoes from Jimmy Choo’s collection, her handbag had Louis Vuitton printed on it. The driver who’d held the door for her was in white uniform with a captain’s hat. A thin girl got out from the other door. Her caretaker status quickly became apparent as she took Madame’s big Louis Vuitton from her hand. A tall, thin girl seated in front came out wearing denims and extremely high stilettos, most probably Christian Louboutin, the French shoemaker. On this young woman’s neck I recognized the signature orange Hermes foulard (scarf) and a very modern orange Hermes clutch bag. Can you picture the splendid catwalk? Grandmom’s footfall was in step with young granddaughter, followed by the caretaker, all approaching me at the entrance. I felt I was in Grasse, south of France, which has the world’s biggest perfume industry.

Soon a black BMW X5 drove in, its third row seating removed to accommodate a velvety- silk textured, humungous German Shepherd. Wearing a black and gray suit, the driver opened the second row door for a petite woman. Her black, gray and brown dress looked very haute couture, with muted embroidery, no violent color. Before the driver could fully lift the dicky door, the beige dog, panting impatiently, tumbled out. Madame was caressing and kissing the responsive dog, almost as tall as her on 2 legs, lots of koochy-koochy-koo love words were exchanged. Finally the dog had to return to the boot. As though to compensate her height, with her subtle dress she wore bright blue high, high heels which went click-click-click past me into the mall.

Now it was the turn of an incredible red horse. All eyes around the driveway were riveted to this horse as it deafeningly screeched to a halt. You can surely imagine what this red animal could be. Both the driver and passenger sat in front. Contrasting that speedy stop, the driver came out languorously, in casual clothes, curling, gelled hair brushed back. His flamboyant attitude made it clear he was the owner, not an employee. When the woman stood up from her low-slung seat, you could have easily mistaken her for a fashion model, she being 6 feet tall. Her bright gold top looked sophisticated with violet slacks. Her slinky strides in golden shoes were better than any pouting ramp walker. Her companion returned after parking the red horse, which was a Ferrari.

Oh la la! Here’s a longish white palace with straight grille coming in front of me. You can’t see anything inside, the windows totally black-shaded inspite of the Government’s ban on it. It’s true, money can buy everything, even darkness. The khaki safari-suited driver was chewing paan. Very discreetly, he walked a little away to spit out red juice, before opening the door of this totally new Rolls Royce. A 65-year-old disembarked, his 3-piece suit is perhaps from Armani. His thick, black coiffured mane with middle parting is probably a wig. His driver brought out a Louis Vuitton briefcase from the front passenger seat and placed it atop the limousine’s bonnet. The gentleman took another Louis Vuitton from it, a pocket wallet; the driver then shut the briefcase and put it back. As this well built, not flabby, man approached, strong ittar smell wafted towards me. Affluence had migrated his taste to European luxury, but in perfumery and his driver, he retained his authentic Indian style.

My hour-long observation of the opulence catwalk was indeed remarkable. More so as this recently opened urbane mall was amidst totally underdeveloped environs. Construction was underway everywhere. Starkly in the middle was this Monte Carlo kind of luxury ambience surrounded by shopping areas for the masses. In Paris, Milan or London, luxury shopping is housed in heritage establishments reflecting traditional and gorgeous authentic flair. To this artificially created ambience in India’s capital have flocked the most luxurious European brands, as though to a circus pavilion to extract big sales from relevant sophisticated customers. The ritual here is to flaunt wealth. The experience of showing off is more important than appreciation of connoisseurship. This is India’s new upper class; not nouveau riche, I call them flaunting-richesse. Luckily for me, I spied upon this opulence catwalk, quite unnoticed.

To download above article in PDF Opulence catwalk

Financial Express link:http://www.indianexpress.com/news/opulence-catwalk/1111652/0

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Posted on 18-11-2012
Filed Under (PARADOX) by Shombit

From Discomfort Zone column by Shombit Sengupta in Financial Express and Indian Express

Don’t hire the best,” wrote Abhijit Bhaduri, but he married the best. “100%! I’ll not even blink to say I am what I am because of Nandini. I totally depend on her….” His completely non-chauvinistic admission is reminiscent of Salvador Dali’s love-smitten refrain about his wife’s aura enveloping him. “Without Gala, Dali doesn’t exist,” said Dali. It was Gala who nurtured this Surrealist painter’s hallucinating art and creativity; she was his everything, wife, promoter, agent and mentor.

Abhijit talks the same language, says his wife is his inspiration, critic and support. In different occasions I’ve met the couple, I found Dalinian indications in their fresh, friendly relationship. As though still dating, Nandini would excitedly make ‘boyfriend’ Abhijit taste something she liked over dinner. The impulsiveness in their bond would surely bring out the writer’s inner essence.

Such spontaneity over the new is what Abhijit describes as personality in his new book. In fact the crux of his Human Resources brushstroke for talent hunting is personality, understanding what the candidate will do in future: “A lot of hiring is done by the resume. That’s quite useless because it’s about something already done.” For Abhijit, a candidate’s personality comes from his urge to mix with unconventional pieces of life, not be stereotyped in any aspect, not even the food he eats or friends he mixes with. My takeaway from Abhijit is that regular life is anti-formula for developing a personality, only a discomfort zone has ingredients to be absorbed for success in the corporate world. Once you have multiple changing experiences, your eco system allows you to be flexible and adjust, which is not the same as having an accommodating attitude.

I remember a long time ago, after a new product development presentation for Danone that was to start from Belguim as the pilot market, I became good friends with Marc Verhamme, Danone’s Managing Director there. Our discussions spilled over to a Brussels restaurant where Marc asked how I get my creative team thinking so differently. I explained we have people of different nationalities and a wide variety of professional fields working together. Then Marc enthusiastically shared his own unique method of recruiting top management, he takes them through a driving session. His point was that when a person is on the steering wheel, you can gauge many important factors. You can measure his patience, confidence, what kind of risk he can manage, his judgment, behavior under stress and his speed. Marc talks on diverse subjects that require some thought to reply intelligently, so he finds out if the candidate can tackle multi-tasking while driving. He said he’s applied this driving metaphor for recruiting senior management several times, and it’s always been effective.

For interviewing senior talent in an organization, Abhijit has a personality pyramid. The three enveloping elements are adjustability, interpersonal sensitivity and sociability. I suddenly realized that these are the exact 3 qualities an Indian bride in an arranged marriage needs to have. Take adjustability. It’s top priority when coming to live in a joint family, aside from apprehensions and thrills of adjusting to a husband you don’t know. In business, adjustability is the psychological reference of managing uncertainty. For a new senior recruit it involves aligning with both top management and reportees, yet perform with cool judgment. Sociability is what a new bride can’t do without, whether placating a little nephew-in-law’s tantrums or being gracious even when the grandmother-in-law’s nosey-parker friends give her the once over. In an office environment, the new boss has to enjoy working with different people, sycophants and rebels alike, aside from managing the complex external environment. Interpersonal sensitivity means being perceptive to how other people receive you. The new bride worries about how she’s measuring up to everyone’s expectations in her new home. The senior level new hire frets over how he/she is perceived in the organization’s wide spectrum, works out how to extract employee allegiance and quickly take charge.

My curiosity about how he came to conclude on personality made Abhijit candidly reveal his own experiences. His father ran projects in the railways, so they traveled across India. “I grew up constantly reinventing the world around me, not living in the past,” he says. Frequent relocations made him adjust to different places, people, food, yet discouraged his making friends, “As we’ll move again tomorrow, and then it’s harder to keep in touch.” He became a bookworm instead, reading voraciously in English, Hindi and Bengali. His father ignited his writing habit by insisting he record important experiences. “If I wrote we saw Qutab Minar and returned home my father would get very upset. Stories are about discovering the uniqueness among the mundane and the everyday glimpse in the unique.” His writing focus later resulted in two sequelized novels, Mediocre but Arrogant, and Married but Available, both adorning the “MBA” tag on dreams, careers, relationships of B-school students in the backdrop of India’s economic liberalization.

What about personality development time for entry level people, I asked Abhijit. He said most people choose careers at age 15 by selecting science or arts stream. After 12th class, will it be engineering, medicine, or any other? So at work the first 2 years goes in figuring out what you like. Only after 4-5 years of job experience does a person know what he/she is best suited for. “Unless you are good at work you don’t really enjoy it,” says Abhijit. In effect a fresher needs 4-5 years of absorption period to establish his business personality. This gels very well with my column 2 weeks ago (http://www.financialexpress.com/news/foie-graslike-training/1026388/0) that absorption time is the most critical to crack the entire learning curve. Personality can be trained, just like a bride picks up adjustability, interpersonal sensitivity and sociability. If you’re a Chinese food eater, begin by ordering a Chinese dish you’ve not had before. The next time, just try the Mexican or Lebanese restaurant. The idea is to go from the familiar to the unfamiliar.

To download above article in PDF Personality of an arranged marriage bride

Financial Express link:http://www.financialexpress.com/news/personality-of-an-arranged-marriage-bride/1032526/0

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