Category Archives: DesiPundit

Rocket Singh- India’s Office movie

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It has to be Hindi cinema’s first movie that is all about corporate life and building a business.

The story itself is straightforward, HS Bedi (Ranbir Kapoor) scrapes through his BCom exams – and knows that entering the hallowed portals of high end B School is beyond his capabilities.

However he does have a talent for persuading people – so he lands up getting a job as a Sales Trainee with Computer parts seller AYS. AYS is owned and run by the corrupt Mr. Puri who does not hesistate to bribe Purchase Managers to sell his computers.

Poor Bedi blows the whistle about a client who demands a bribe – and is promptly banned from going to sell. His colleagues get their sales targets increased and hate him.

Hurt and angry, Bedi subverts the official way of doing business and launches his own stealth startup called “Rocket Sales Corp” recruiting the Receptionist, the Office Peon, The Service Engineer and finally the Sales Manager too.

The story never meanders from this path – and there are no typical Bollywood dances or songs – and even the love interest is dispensed early with.

And there are tonnes of career and work related quotes. For example, Mr Puri loves quoting “हर बन्दे में एक ऊपर जाने की quality होती है और एक नीचे जाने की . फरक येही है की वोह कौनसी quality को बढ़ता है” (Everyone has a quality that takes him to the top and another that takes him to the bottom. Where you finally end up depends on which you utilise)

Finally Bedi has the last laugh – and shows that building a business using ethical practices is possible and their are clients who value it and cannot be bought – showcasing the way business is done in India is changing. As he tells Puri in the end “You concentrated on the numbers and didn’t care about the relationships – however I learnt that if one focuses on the relationships the numbers will come”

I kid you not, at that point I wanted to get up and clap.

Yessir, this is a landmark film for Indian moviedom. It’s going to be a cult film for the corporate crowd 🙂

Some people told me that they felt the movie was a bit on the long side, and I agree that some tight editing would have made it even better.

P.S. On another note – I also love the social media integration of the movie- like on Facebook, Twitter and the Blog

P.P.S. Other people have pointed out that even Corporate was a movie based on corporate life. Yes that’s true. But while Corporate was about larger than life issues, melodramatic and holier than thou – Rocket Singh is about a protagonist with whom the audience can empathise. checkFull(“post-” + “5496435794864955909”);

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Recruiting in the age of Social Media

Web2.0 is the collective name for a lot of technologies by which people can interact with other people (and organizations) on the web, publicly and in a transparent manner. It can include forums, blogs, twitter, linkedin, facebook, orkut  etc.

Social Recruiting is the new buzzword.

So what can an organization do specially in the staffing area?

Here are some thoughts:

  1. The staffing group of any company can use these tools to reach out to prospective candidates and create a ready talent pool – for example Sapient India has a lot of recruiters who actively look at growing their network on Linkedin. Recruiters can use Linkedin status updates and also Q&A to showcase opportunities that exist in their organizations.
  2. Like Microsoft in the US has shown – blogging can be a great way to engage readers with what roles are happening and what positions are open – and how to prepare for an interview. Check post on employees are marketers in the age of social media
  3. Twitter becomes a great medium to share news and information with people who choose to follow you – and making it relevant for their use.
  4. On a different note advertising using Google Adwords is a great way for reaching out to people interested in their domain/industry – specially passive candidates.
  5. Making a facebook page and Orkut community are other tools that businesses can do to engage talented candidates in conversation.
  6. In fact in my view someone in the Marketing/Recruiting function needs to take a “Talent Community Manager” role to drive these initiatives – and to get others internally in the organization to get engaged with the candidate community
    1. This community manager needs to have a mindset of open and honest collaboration and organizations must be clear about what objectives they expect from her/him and therefore what metrics to track to check his/her performance.

Nine Mantras of Building Virtual Communities

I wrote this a long time back (November 2002) focusing on email listservs/egroups, but thought it’s still relevant these days with more and more people online and Facebook and Twitter and Linkedin becoming more and more popular

  1. Text matters like never before in the virtual world. Because when face to face richness is missing (Dr. Madhukar Shukla terms it the “reach vs richness debate”) you have to be very sure of what you write and what it could be interpreted as, as the person reading might not have the benefit of knowledge of your contexts.
  2. Communities in the networked world perhaps need a lot of investment with regard to time and effort , in my view perhaps more than social “real” communities.
  3. Virtual reputations might be different from ‘real’ ones, but they stick just as much.
  4. Giving more than recieving is the golden rule but seldom gets followed, as most people are in a recipient mode in such communities and don’t have an iota of clue about their influence or power.
  5. It takes a lot of guts to ‘say’ something publicly… and most people are uncomfortable doing that as it means taking a stand, and not just verbally. Your point of view is going in text format to hundreds and thousands of mail boxes, being read by people you might never meet. It is also going to be cached and searchable by search engines for posterity.
  6. Any lack of integrity on these listservs are sensed by people on these groups and even if they do not tell you on the face , the damage can be irrepairable.
  7. When in doubt , the Golden Rule continues to be “Honesty is the Best Policy”…saying “I don’t know” is a valued comment , because it is so rare.
  8. When you cannot help, redirect. On a lot of HR/OD/Trng egroups I come across a lot of “I need help regarding XYZ” kind of mails..it takes me a second to refer the person who queries to folks who are credible as well as prompt to reply.
  9. Time is the essence. No point answering someone’s query after 3 days..the time you could have built your impact is passe…for making an impact it has to be immediate

The Delhi Blogger Meet and Tweetup

Saturday 9th May was the 29th Delhi Blogger Meet at the Maximum Store at Shahpur Jat, Delhi.

It was arranged by the inimitable Twilightfairy and Mojosanjay (if you don’t know their real names then you’re obviously not a part of the Delhi Bloggers Bloc 😀 )

The guest was Sam Miller, author of “Delhi: Adventures of a Megacity“.

Some of the other bloggers and twitterati who landed up were Sidin Vadukut, Mayank Dhingra, Saad, Deepak Shenoy, Kishore Bhargava, his wife Jyoti, sister Mala and his son. Others also included P.Jain, Ankur Banerjee, Aayush Soni, Honeytech, and the big twitterati  Vijayandra Mohanty. Some people we missed were Rajesh Lalwani, Palinn and Bhawna Sharma.

Some interesting points that got discussed were:

  1.  A common theme that emerged was that we all seemed to be spending much more time on Twitter and neglecting our blogs. The point that emerged was that twitter was a great medium to just share links and reply to people while a blog was a better place to bring out longer thoughts that needed to be mulled and reflected over. updated: I actually quoted this US recruiting blogger who posted that twitter is a stream of thoughts and context setting is impossible. If one replies to my tweet in the next couple of hours I can get the context – later than that I am unable to figure it out. Remembered due to BombayAddict’s post on the related topic.

    So Twitter is great for context free conversations.

    Blogging for setting the context and presenting a cogent logical argument. 

  2. A concern was expressed by some people that with so much virtual relationships were real world skills going to be lost – were people focusing too much on electronic medium that ‘higher’ things like reading and conversation were suffering. I disagreed with the premise, quoting Clay Shirky’s book – and saying that engagement of any level is better – than say being focused on passive consumption.
  3. Vimoh raised the point that medium like twitter enable him to have conversations with people on broader and deeper issues than the ones he ends up having with real world friends – which tend to be mundane. Guess I should have repeated this tweet of mine here. 
  4. Some others shared how twitter has been a useful tool for reporting out things like earthquakes and terror attacks.
  5. I raised the point that tools are irrelevant beyond a point. One can move from network to network and keep connecting with the same and new connections. Sairee, a friend from Ryze network was there, and though she’s not blogging and tweeting we’re still connected via facebook. 
  6. Sidin shared how he’s going to track the mood of the nation via twitter once the election results come up on 16th May! 

I guess after that snacks and cold drinks and samosas landed up which made everybody get up and indulge in one on one  and network in smaller groups.

Overall it was a fun evening.

Going back, these thoughts came to me:

gautamghosh skills a digital life builds: multi-tasking, audience analysis, meta-cognition, reflection, engagement with larger social processes

gautamghosh if you let technology control you instead of vice versa don’t blame the tech. Blame your own lack of control1 day ago from mobile web

gautamghosh skills a digital life builds: multi-tasking, audience analysis, metacognition, reflection, engagement with larger social processes1 day ago from mobile web

The India Bloggers’ Directory

If you’re a blogger then you should really check this out.

Blogworks is coming out with the first edition of India’s Blogger Directory.

Here’s Rajesh Lalwani’s post on that and here’s where you can enter your details.

I think it’s going to be a great resource for traditional media, PR agencies as well as other interested people to get in touch with relevant bloggers. As Rajesh notes, it might even be available online soon. 

Of course, the success for the venture would happen if the blogger community participates in it in large numbers. 

So I’m also doing my part in getting the word out 🙂

So what are you waiting for?