Archive for » June, 2010 «

If you don’t have an e-mail id,you don’t exist !

If you don’t have an e-mail id,you don’t exist !
Today,we have our own e-mail id.Some even have a number of multiple ids on Google,Yahoo,Hotmail etc.
Here is a story (real ?) on one man who did not have
an e-mail id and yet rose to become an empire builder.
How ? Read on……
Microsoft & Tomatoes

A jobless man applied for the position of “office boy” at Microsoft. The HR manager interviewed him then watched him cleaning the floor as a test. “You are employed” he said.”Give me your e-mail address and I’ll send you the application to fill in, as well as date when you may start. The man replied “But I don’t have a computer, neither an email.”I’m sorry”, said the HR manager,”If you don’t have an email, that means you do not exist. And who doesn’t exist, cannot have the job.The man left with no hope at all.

He didn’t know what to do, with only $10 in his pocket. He then decided to go to the supermarket and buy a 10 Kg tomato crate. He then sold the tomatoes in a door to door round. In less than two hours, he succeeded to double his capital. He repeated the operation three times, and returned home with $60. The man realized that he can survive by this way, and started to go everyday earlier, and return late Thus, his money doubled or tripled every day.Shortly, he bought a cart, then a truck, then he had his own fleet of delivery vehicles. 5 years later, the man is one of the biggest food retailers in the US.

He started to plan his family’s future, and decided to have a life insurance. He called an insurance broker, and chose a protection plan. When the conversation was concluded,the broker asked him his email. The man replied, “I don’t have an email”. The broker answered curiously, “You don’t have an email, and yet have succeeded to build an empire. Can you imagine what you could have been if you had an email?!!”The man thought for a while and replied, “Yes, I’d be an office boy at Microsoft!”

Moral of the story:

1) Internet is not the solution to your life.
2) If you don’t have internet, and work hard, you can be a millionaire.
3) If you received this message by email, you are closer to being an office boy, than a millionaire…

Have a great day !!!

P.S -Do not forward this e-mail back to me, since I am closing all my email addresses & going to sell tomatoes!!! 



Dear Readers,after completion of exams,declaration of results etc, the placement season in various B Schools starts in full swing. Students try their luck in campus interviews held by various visiting companies.Everyone wishes to grab the best job with the most lucrative pay package.
However, only a lucky few manage to get the job and package of their dreams.What happens to the rest ? Some keep trying.Some look to other alternatives.Some think of starting their own enterprise. Class-mates,batch-mates establish network with each other and keep each other informed of various opportunities.
Here is a humorous take on one such pair of MBA friends :
Message from one MBA friend to another MBA

Hum dosti kuchch is tarah nibhayengey,
Placement nahin milli toh bilkul nahin ghabhrayengey,
Station pey chai ki dukaan lagayengey,
Tum chai banana, hum chai chai chillayengey … !!

A rough translation of above :
We will continue our friendship for life…
We will not feel disheartened at all-
If after all strife,we don’t get a placement call.
We will start a tea-shop at the railway station-
While you prepare the tea and fill up the cups I will shout:”Hot Tea”,”Hot Tea”
And call peoples’ attention !!
What a collaborative idea,Sir ji !  

Muskuraatey raho……  
Chai pilaatey raho….

India’s hottest start-ups

In the latest issue of my favourite magazine Business Today (BT), India’s hottest start – ups were discussed.
Here is what I felt and wrote in response to BT:
India’s hottest start-ups.

Dear Sir, this refers to your latest issue of BT (June 27th 2010) on “India’s hottest start-ups.
The 16 profiles of hottest start-ups discussed in the issue range from “common sense” projects to “grey-cells challenging” projects and were awe-inspiring.

Start-ups are generally associated with high growth,technology oriented companies in which investors are interested due to their risk-reward profile,low costs,higher risks and higher potential for RoI (Return on Investment).

Merely having an idea up your sleeve is not sufficient.Its commercial potential has to be seen.Rarely we come across start-ups which yield huge returns to their creators and investors- example Google.The bursting of the dot-com bubble in the late 1990s was an example of start-up apocalypse !

What is more of relevance in today’s times is that start-ups must be socially beneficial.If a start-up is successful in raising the standard of living of the common man,I feel it has served its purpose.

Mohammad Yunus’ Grameen Bank project which won him the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize indicates that to be successful,a really useful start-up must be low cost and have the ability to transform lives and resolve social inequities in our society.


I am also reminded of Warren Buffet’s recent letter on Berkshire Hathway’s website,where he offers two good lessons for start-up ventures : a) Converse like a real human being and b) Admit mistakes and move on.
In short,your issue is a very useful guide for budding entrepreneurs of our country. Kudos to the BT team !

New Delhi 

How the Media Twists the News…

How the Media Twists the News
A biker is riding by the zoo, when he sees a little girl leaning into the lion’s cage.

Suddenly, the lion grabs her by the cuff of her jacket and tries to pull her inside the cage, under the eyes of her screaming parents.

The biker jumps off his bike, runs to the cage and hits the lion square in the eye with a powerful punch.
Whimpering from the pain the lion jumps back letting go of the girl, and the biker brings her to her terrified parents, who thank him endlessly.
A New York Times reporter has watched the whole event.

The reporter, addressing the biker says, “Sir, that was the bravest and most gallant thing I have ever witnessed in my whole life.”

The biker replies, “It was nothing, really … the lion was behind bars. I just saw this little kid in danger, and acted as I felt right.”

The reporter says, “Well, I’ll make sure this won’t go unnoticed. I’m a journalist from the New York Times, and tomorrow’s paper will have this story on the front page. So, let me get some details:”What do you do for a living?”

The biker replied, “I’m a United States Marine.”

“And what is your political affiliation?”

“I’m a Republican.”

The journalist leaves, again promising a front page story.

The following morning the biker buys a copy of the Times to see if it indeed brings news of his actions, and reads, on front page:



Communication problems…

While studying for my PGDBM way back in 1979, I recall that I had a topic called Business Communication in the subject titled Office Management.We had been told that :the three C’s of effective business communication were: Clear, Concise, and Constructive.
Elaborating on this we were informed as under :
Clear: be sure you are speaking/writing in a manner easily understood by your audience. You wouldn’t speak to a 5-year-old in the same manner as you would a 30-year-old.

Concise: get to the point with factual information.

Constructive: be sure you’re going somewhere with your statement. Don’t run-around in circles, because if you do you will lose your audience.

My readers must be wondering why this sudden reference to this topic ?
The answer is simply the following piece which I read with great interest.I hope you will also like it
Divorce Court

A judge was interviewing a woman regarding her pending divorce, and asked, “What are the grounds for your divorce?”

She replied, “About four acres and a nice little home in the middle of the property with a stream running by.”

“No,” he said, “I mean what is the foundation of this case?”

“It is made of concrete, brick and mortar,” she responded.

“I mean,” he continued, “What are your relations like?”

“I have an aunt and uncle living here in town, and so do my husband’s parents.”

He said, “Do you have a real grudge?”

“No,” she replied, “We have a two-car carport and have never really needed one.”

“Please,” he tried again, “is there any infidelity in your marriage?”

“Yes, both my son and daughter have stereo sets. We don’t necessarily like the music, but the answer to your questions is yes.”

“Ma’am, does your husband ever beat you up?”

“Yes,” she responded, “about twice a week he gets up earlier than I do.”

Finally, in frustration, the judge asked, “Lady, why do you want a divorce?”

“Oh, I don’t want a divorce,” she replied. “I’ve never wanted a divorce. My husband does. He said he can’t communicate with me!”

Have I made my self clear ? I think I have ! What do you say ?

Bye-bye to Bhai-Bhai !

Bye-bye to Bhai-Bhai !
Blow-by-Blow account :
Here is the latest on Ambani Bandhus :
‘Ambani brothers set for patch-up tomorrow’
Headlines Today – June 17, 2010  

After five years of bitterness, is reconciliation between the warring Ambani brothers on the cards?

The crucial RIL AGM

Sources tell Headlines Today that the defining signal that bitterness between Mukesh Ambani and his sibling Anil is a thing of the past could be visible on Friday (18th June 2010) at the Reliance Industries annual general meeting in Mumbai.
It is believed that Anil Ambani and his wife Tina will be present at the AGM of the Mukesh-owned Reliance Industries Limited (RIL).

Friday also marks five years to the day since the two brothers signed on the family settlement, leading to a split of the Dhirubhai Ambani empire between his two sons. Mother Kokilaben was the moving force behind the deal, which was inked to bring peace between the brothers.
Kokilaben will be present at Friday’s AGM at the Birla Matoshree Hall.

Buzz on Dalal Street

Ahead of the AGM, Dalal Street is buzzing with speculation whether any big announcements would form the basis for the uniting of the Ambani brothers.
Analysts expect RIL chairman Mukesh Ambani to make a few crucial announcements. Firstly, he is expected to apprise shareholders on the Supreme Court judgement on the gas dispute with Anil.
Mukesh will, in all likelihood, also update the RIL shareholders on the negotiations with Anil for the supply of natural gas to his power companies.
On May 7, the Supreme Court ruled on pricing of natural gas from RIL-owned fields for use in Anil’s power plants. It adjudged the case in favour of RIL and upheld the government’s right of ownership over the gas.
At the AGM, Mukesh might also give details of his wireless broadband rollout plans and his foray into telecom. RIL recently re-entered the telecom domain by acquiring 95 per cent stake in Infotel Broadband.
There are reports that the senior Ambani might even indicate whether RIL will hike its stake in Anil’s Reliance Communications.
What led to the thaw?
Headlines Today has learnt that Kokilaben called both the brothers for a meeting without each knowing that the other would be present. She told them they should focus on building shareholder value and honouring their late father’s legacy.
Kokilaben enforced her right as a major shareholder in both the entities in convincing both the brothers that they work towards constructive collaboration.
On May 19, Anil travelled to Kedarnath with mother Kokilaben to offer prayers. Four days later, the two brothers ended their non-compete agreement and opened each other’s business domains to one another.
On May 29, Anil and wife Tina stopped over at Mukesh’s guesthouse while on a visit to Tirupati. In a week’s time, Anil withdrew the Rs 10,000-crore defamation suit filed against Mukesh.
By June 10, the patch-up looked complete as both the families vacationed together in Dhirubhai’s favourite spot – the Kruger National Park in South Africa.
The next day, Mukesh bought Infotel Broadband for Rs 4,800 crore and announced his re-entry into the telecom business.  
Picture abhi baaki hai mere dost ! Yeh tau trailer hai !

Proverbs in daily life ….

Proverbs in daily life …. 

My late mother and father were  very fond of quoting proverbs while talking. Slowly, I too developed a liking for proverbs and started collecting them and using them in my talks, much to the delight of my children and other friends.  

I will list out some such proverbs in common use in our homes, be they in Punjabi or in Hindi. 

I am sure there are similar proverbs in other languages as well.Proverbs add spice to our otherwise mundane talks.They convey convincingly  in a short crisp manner what one wants to say. 

I will begin with a common proverb in Hindi : Sawan ke andhe ko sab hara hi hara nazar aata hai.”   The literal meaning of this proverb is : “One who goes blind in spring, sees only greenery all around.”. 

This proverb is commonly used for people who fail to see reality, especially dire circumstances, when they have lived through prosperous times. 

Once I had discussed this proverb, in a lighter moment, in a class of some students. I posed them the question : Sawan ke andhe ko sab  hara hara hi kyun dikhayi deta ha? “  

They came out with their weird explanations ! 

Here are some of them at random :

1. Agar wo sachmuch me andha hai to fir usey hara hara bhi kyon dikhai deta hai…. Andhe insaan ko to kuch bhi nahi dikhai dena chahiey naan………  

(Meaning :If he is really blind,then why does he see only green …a blind person should not be able to see anything,no…?)

2. Iska reason ye ho sakta hai ki wo jis time andha hua tha…… us time wo kisi park ya garden me khada hoga or uske charo taraf hariyaali hogi……. Isliye use sab hara hara dikhta hai…….

(Meaning : The reason for this may be that at the time he became blind,he must have been standing in some park or a garden and there must have been greenery all around him.Therefore he must be seeing all things green ) 

 3. Woh Shri Krishan ji ya Ram ji ka bhakt hoga…… ya fir use Akshay Kumar ke gaane pasand honge….. for example……. “Hare Ram Hare Ram, Hare Krishna……. Teri akhein bhul bhulaiya”……  

(Meaning: He must be devotee of  Lord Rama or Lord Krishna,or he must be a lover of  actor Akshay Kumar’s songs for example…Harey Ram Harey Ram,Harey Krishna…Teri ankhein bhool bhulayia..) 

4. Kisi andhe ka mazaak udana achi baat nahi hai yaar….. chahe use hara hara dikhai de ya Laal Laal …… isse kya farak padta hai…….  

(Meaning : It is very bad to make fun of a blind person,dear friend.He may see green green or red red.What does it matter to to him?) 

5. Waise agar sawan ke andhe ko hara hara dikhai deta hai….. to winter ke andhe ko charo or Burf hi Burf dikhni chahie…… hai naan ?  

(Meaning : If a person gone blind in spring sees all green then a person gone blind in winter should see snow snow every where, isn’t it ?)

Now my dear friends, trying to find out the real meaning of this oft quoted proverb is like :Ghaas ke dher may sui khojna… “

Literal meaning of this proverb is : To search for a needle in haystack. It means a very difficult task.

So we will not waste any more time……..More next time…. 



Black faced and Red faced Monkeys….

Dear Friends,
I read this interesting piece of news.How enterprising no ?The monkey business is better than other businesses.Even a fresh MBA gets such a package, to begin with.What’s your view ? Let me know please.Best response will get an honourable mention on my blog. 
This langur has a govt job @ Rs 10K pm 
Kanpur, June 5 — Many youths toil day and night and yet cannot take home a pay packet of Rs 10, 000 per month. However, a black-faced langur named  Mangal Singh, has landed a job, which earns him a package of Rs 1.2 lakh per annum!  

The langur is hired by the Employees State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) here as a ‘guard’ to keep common marauding monkeys at bay. Deputy Director of ESIC, Prabhat Sharma told HT, “The monkeys had made life miserable for the employees and those living on the campus. These monkeys had destroyed several important documents and other records with important financial details.”  

The marauders had also injured several employees. Sharma said that many times, he saw these monkeys ‘reading’ departmental files and then tearing them into shreds but he could not help save important data.

Sharma said the department tried contacting the Kanpur Zoo oficials and other departments concerned to check the monkey menace but all efforts proved futile. The zoo authorities installed a cage but only one monkey was caught in several months. 

According to informed sources, a zoo official advised the ESIC officials to contact Mohd Fareed, a monkey trainer. Mohd Fareed also provides his services to the Rashtrapati Bhawan and several other government departments in Kanpur, Delhi and Lucknow. 

Mangal Singh, the langur was deployed on the ESIC campus in October 2008 to chase monkeys away. Irfaan, the caretaker of the langur at ESIC said, “Red-faced monkeys fear black-faced langurs because they are mightier. Usually, after seeing the monkey with long tail and black face, the red-faced monkeys keep away.” 

Needless to state, the ESIC campus, full of greenery with hundreds of trees and plants, which once bustled with the roguish activities of red-face monkeys who stole clothes, food and other goods from houses and office, is quiet today. 


My letter to Business Today

My letter to Business Today

BT issue dated 30th May 2010 was a special issue  on the subject of Innovation-a subject which has always been very dear to me.I have also discussed the subject of Innovation Management in some of my sessions with MBA students during last one year.

Here is my response to the subject via my letter to the editor of BT :
Dear Sir,
I refer to your Special  BT issue dated 30th May 2010 on INNOVATION”. 
All the articles were well researched and excellently presented.Innovation has been defined by many writers and experts in different ways according to their perceptions. In fact,Innovation Management has now become a hot topic and is discussed and debated hotly in many B Schools.
There is often a confusion between innovation and invention.An eminent authority, Daniel Scocco  clarifies that “invention refers to new concepts or products that derive from individual’s ideas or from scientific research. Innovation, on the other hand, is the commercialization of the invention itself.”
Since innovation is also considered a major driver of the economy, especially when it leads to increasing productivity, the factors that lead to innovation are also considered to be critical to our policy makers. Further,to be successful,innovation has to pass through three stages viz.innovation, invention, translation and commercialization. The most difficult and challenging part is the last stage.
In todays competitive market the ultimate aim of inovation is to develope the ability to deliver new value to customers-be it in banking,or in retail,or in FMCG.
In essence,the focus of innovation management is to allow the organization to respond to external or internal opportunity, and use its creative efforts to introduce new ideas, processes or products.
Kudos to the BT team for busting some of the popular myths of innovation.
  New Delhi

Humour unlimited…

Humour unlimited…

Readers on this forum are aware of my (often ) wicked sense of humour and I have been posting some funny stuff to tickle my readers from time to time.Today I am in the mood of dissecting one common relationship in our society.I will be concentrating on the funny bone to begin with and then see what develops.Please pray for me !!

One such relationship that has been stretched to the limits of boredom on the idiot box is the saas-bahu saga unlimited….There have been TV serials like …..Kyonki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thee …. as well as Tu Tu Main Main etc which have depicted sour and sweet sides of this relationship.

I often wonder how much truth or untruth is there in such depictions and/or whether the liberties as shown on the small screen, have been taken by the directors/producers just to garner TRP ratings.

I also wonder if this relationship is a stereotyped one and whether such a bitter/sweet relationship among the species really exists in all castes of our society-be it among Gujaratis,or Maharashtrians or even among our caste of Sikhs.There are several web sites on the Internet that list mother-in-law / daughter-in-law jokes, discuss situations and lay bare this relationship exposing their funny side,sad side and real side to some extent.

I have many friends and relatives.I have been watching saas bahu relationships in their homes from afar as a casual observer,since decades probably.

I had the good fortune to discuss this subject with Dr Mrs. S Sodhi-PhD (name changed at her request to avoid creating tiff with her dear m-in-l ) She has done extensive research on the subject titled : ” Role of Mother-in-law in the Indian Society and classification of this species in the real world.”

She has concluded that as a general rule,a majority of m-in-laws cause bad vibes in the house and often they are the subject of nightmares in the lives of bahus ! She shared some of her findings with me while stuffing hot alloo prathas in the famous paraathey-walli-galli in Delhi and sipping some creamy sweet lassi in a few sessions last month.

She has categorized mother-in-laws into following types listed at random (Serial numbers are not ranks please) :

1.Controller type : She always commands the bahu to do things her way, or she pretends to be nonchalant about whether or not she is trying to pressure her, but the bahu still feels her push.This kind of mother-in-law leaves stress in her wake.

2.Perfectionist type : Her eyes stealthily scan the entire house for anything out of place. The meals the bahu serves are not good enough, or the bahu‘s hair style is never ever right for her tastes. She points out every flaw and fault of her bahu , and refers proudly to her own skills in every area.Yes her nitpicking gives the bahu a real headache.

3.Judge type : She was the perfect wife when she married the bahu‘s father-in-law ! She has no negative history. They had lived a blissful courtship and he was the very first kiss. Consequently, the bahu has made errors in her past and she is quick to decide what kind a woman she will be in the future.The bahu’s style indicates one thing, her  mannerisms another, and no matter what she does, the mother-in-law is always looking down on her and sizing up her faults.

4.Cash connected type :  She gives the bahu a lot of information on mutual funds, banks, and ideas to make money on the side. She is constantly asking the bahu about money and bragging about her own income from various sources (?) .Her cconversations always gravitate toward finances, and it makes the bahu feel totally insignificant and irritated. She will offer to help the bahu to budget her monthly expenses !

5.Joker type : Whether the bahu is sensitive, or she considers herself to have a thick skin, it is not always easy when someone feels that every insult she dreams up is sheer comedy stuff. Yes, there are some mothers-in-law who are oblivious to the hurt they cause when they act the joker.I feel they just don’t seem to understand that such acts should be left to the stage professionals.Regardless of this, such m-in-laws inadvertently hurt a bahu‘s feelings, and after a while, it begins to wear on their relationships.

6.Baby badger type : Whether the bahu is struggling with infertility,or decided not to have a child, or just hasn’t started the family yet, she is constantly reminded that the mother-in-law would love to have a grandchild. She even begins to plan the nursery or purchase a pram “just in case.” The stress on marriage takes its toll, and this very subject has become the subject of many family gatherings. She even begins to pry into whether or not the bahu has any infertility issues she can help her with. The  mother-in-law had had her children when she was very young.

7.Liar type : The bahu just found out again that her mother-in-law is stretching the truth; it could be about something minor or even about her. It’s either a seemingly harmless white  lie that she’s told, or a whopper capable of destroying others’ lives. Regardless, the mother-in-law seems to be oblivious to the fact that her backbiting is highly unwelcome.

8.Snoopy type : Nothing is more tantalizing to the mother-in-law than the bahu‘s stack of bills in her desk drawer. Chances are that she’s taken a look before.She’s got more questions than a newspaper reporter, and she seems quick to catch the bahu off guard. She has probably interviewed everyone who ever knew the bahu to get a peek at her old records.

9.Hypochondriac type : Every time the bahu sees her,the mother-in-law has some sort of medical complaint.Her body is out to get her; she is always sick.The doctors don’t know what is wrong. Sometimes, the doctors are even wrong.The mother-in-law might have a billion problems which she researched in earnest on the Internet. Her intuition tells her that she’s got one foot in the grave, and she wants the bahu to know she’s afraid.The bahu should not dare ask how the mother-in-law is feeling, or she will tell her in detail !

10. Other miscellaneous types : The learned doctor friend of mine had to rush to pick up her dear mother-in-law from the beauty parlour and she did not want to face her wrath, so she soon left me asking me to pay the lassi-paratha bill this time,as her mother-in-law had not yet given her her monthly pocket money allowance !  So, I will end my piece here.My intelligent readers can add their own types of m-in-laws to this highly exclusive list.

Here is a suggestion.Let some of the experienced bahus on this forum share their survival strategies to face such a varied species of mother-in-laws !

Now,I come to the best part of this piece. What exactly triggered me to pen this outburst against this respectable species ? Well, I am a regular reader of Khushwant Singh’s columns and recently,I read the following nugget of 24 carat gold value :


 Rabba,yaa tey sass changi hovey,

nahin taan photo tangi hovey !

Lord, give me a kind mother-in-law.

If not,let me see her picture hung on the wall.

(From Khushwant Singh’s column ” With Malice Towards One And All “. Hindustan Times, Sunday 6th June 2010)


                                                                                           My m-in-law !!