March 7, 2014

How Organizations are Fighting the War for Troy Everyday?

There is a famous dialogue from the movie Troy, War is young men dying and old men talking. You know this. Ignore the politics.

This  applies very well to the organizations in the corporate world.

Running a company involves old men (executive and senior management) busy in talking (board meetings, strategic planning, management reviews, et al) while the young men (middle and line management and all other employees) keep on dying (tight deadlines, lack of adequate resources, lack of visibility, stretch goals, et al).

The old men define the strategy, direction and resource allocation whilst the young men are busy in performing activities that earn money for the company.

Old men are busy in deciding what resources to allocate to which area, which persons to keep in an area or move to another area and for these old men certain buzzwords mean everything - shareholder expectations,  market trends, profitability, operational excellence, employee engagement, etc.

On the other hand, the young men are like sacrificial lambs who are moved from one to another place and told what to do and what not to do.

In light of the above organizations are fighting the war for Troy everyday. The young men keep on dying while the old men keep on talking and more talking.

March 4, 2014

When Someone Close to You Falls Seriously Sick

Seeing someone close to you go through serious sickness and witnessing the pains and tears that accompany it is both physically and emotionally draining. Serious sickness is also financially draining if one is not  able to afford the treatment comfortably. One wants the sick person to be completely cured and that too quickly. In case the process of healing gets prolonged the emotional stress generated reaches very high levels.

The flow of various activities like talking to the doctor, buying medicines and injections, seeing the patient being administered the medicines, helping the patient consume the medicines at the prescribed time in the prescribed dosage, watching the progress of healing makes one go through various mood changes. This is tougher in case the patient happens to be a child.

In an overall sense, the experience of someone close to you falling seriously sick is a humbling experience in life. The fact that life is so vulnerable and fragile stares at your face and makes you realize the nothingness of many things we take so seriously at times. Not only that one comes to terms with one's own vulnerability and mortality.

It also helps one acquire a philosophical outlook towards life and towards the very purpose of it. The only certainty in life is death and a close encounter with serious sickness or death is a good eye opener and recalling such experiences throughout one's life helps one stay humble and in touch with ground reality.

The fact that almost no one alive at this moment will be alive 100 years later is a fact that no one should ignore. There is no reason to get sad or anxious about this fact. Awareness of this fact should instead help one to have complete peace of mind. No fear, no failure, no humiliation, no happiness, no sadness should be viewed big enough for one to loose one's peace of mind.

Bhagvada Geeta provides an excellent take on life. The focus on Karma (actions) as the only Dharma (religion) without any expectations of Fal (fruit or outcome) is a very powerful concept which helps one to enjoy life through the various deeds one would perform from birth until death.

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