Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Who Would You Hire?

Quite a few years ago, on a very busy day, my boss asked me, in the last minute, to go to a HR training meeting. She was supposed to go. Since she was busy, she asked me to represent her. Since I had a very busy schedule that day I told her I will not go to that meeting. But she insisted I had to go. So I had no other alternative. Corporate world is not a democracy.

The title of the training session was Hiring Techniques. The instructor started with this question to every one: If you have an opportunity to hire someone, who will you hire? Lots of similar answers. Hire someone with great qualifications. Hire someone with a lot of experience. Hire someone with great potential. Etc. Etc.

My turn came. I was already in kaduppu because of my boss. (Kaduppu is a Tamil slang for angry and frustrated but could not do anything about it.) I said I would hire someone if he/she is like me.

Unwittingly, I gave the instructor an opportunity to open up a long discussion and exchange of views. He turned around and asked me why would I hire someone if he/she is like me. I started to blurb out words like similar skills, similar work habits, and similar personality would make me comfortable with that person.

The whole group started to discuss pros and cons. Here are a few opinion voiced by others in that training session:

Hire someone who is experienced in an area where you lack the skills.

Hire someone like you and he/she can take over for you in your absence.

Hire someone with a positive attitude.

Hire someone that you like, that is not like you. (shades of Rajni Kanth?) HuhHUhHUhHaaaaa.

Hire someone that can make your team better.

Hire someone who has a different point of view.

Hire someone like you so he/she can fit into your team.

Dear Blogging Friends,

What do you think? Would you hire someone who is like you? If not, who would you hire?

Monday, September 17, 2012

Kids, nowadays

Kids, nowadays, are far more knowledgeable than the previous generation. I am not just talking about how they are computer game whiz. In addition to that, I am amazed at how they handle the situation.

Recently we visited a relative’s home. They have 2 boys. 7 year old and 5 year old. The older kid has a video game console, Xbox 360. He asked me if I would like to play a game called Mortal Combat vs DC Universe. And, I agreed to play with him. I also told the him I have never played that game before.

In this game, they take the old mortal combat heroes and make them compete against super heroes like Batman, Superman, Spider-man, etc.

The kid’s parent told me he is very good at playing this game. The kid explained to me “how” to play and the rules of the game.

OK the game starts. Within 2 minutes, I defeated him. Defeated him is a mild description. I just destroyed him. I just annihilated him. The kid did not get angry or disappointed. He was composed and smiling.

I asked the him why he did not get mad or angry or disappointed when I defeated him. He replied:

Because I let you win so you won’t be disappointed.

We played another 4 games. He destroyed me within 30 seconds in each game.

I am not talking about his skills. I am talking about his letting me win purposely the first game so I show continued interest. We used to do that to kids a few years ago. Nowadays, the kids are doing the same to us.

Monday, September 10, 2012

My 200th Post

This is my 200th post. Long over due. I started writing in June 2009. I wrote 63 posts in 2009 and 117 posts in 2010. Then I took a kind of sabbatical in 2011. In that year, I wrote only 2.

I would like to thank all my friends for their continued support.

What prompted me to start my own blog? I want to thank 2 people for that.

I used to follow Insignia’s blog. I am following even now. Impressed with her writing skills. Bindu asked me to write a guest post for her blog. I did and it was well received. She encouraged me to create my own blog and start writing. She helped me with setting up my own blog. In essence, she was my technical advisor and blog guru. And, she still is.

The Cagey Bee/Who Posted This. He is the same person but writes comments with 2 pseudo names depending on the subject. He also encouraged me to start my own blog. I have been told by a few readers that they visit my blog only to read the comments from this guy. I wish I had this guy’s humorous writing skills. He is not a mystery person. Two fellow blogging friends have indeed met him in person. I have asked him to create his own blog and start writing posts. He said he is content with writing comments only.

Of all the posts I wrote so far, I personally like the following 12 in rank order.

Poor Judgement (Caution: Real Story, Very Tragic)

Since I have nothing to do, I have been monitoring the “live feed”. Even though no one writes a comment any more on this post, the most “read” post is “The Allan Bakke Case”.

Once again, thanks to you all for your continued support. Puleeze keep visiting my blog.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Tag Time

Now it is tag time. Priyaa has tagged me. I have been asked to write a post on the following subjects:

Tell two moments in my life when I was both happy and sad (simultaneously).

Leaving India and coming to California. Happy to go to USA for a better career and better life. Looking forward to the American dream. At the same time, sad because of leaving family and friends. Not being able to see Kamal Haasan movies on the day of release. Missing Rava Dosa (with special chutney and a bucket of sambar) in Chennai restaurants.

Company transfer from San Francisco to Salt Lake City, Utah. Happy that I got a big promotion, prestigious title, nice salary increase. Sad because we were leaving our home in California. That is the first home we ever bought in our life. My first debt to the bank. Special affection towards that home. We often look at that home drawing. Still wondering how the architect was able to design a comfortable 4 bedroom home in only 1590 square foot (single floor).

Tell two books I love and why.

“Love Story” by Erich Segal. It was also made into a successful movie in Hollywood starring Ryan O’Neil and Ali MacGraw. Romantic drama ends in a tragedy. The famous line “Love means never having to say you’re sorry” was uttered twice in this book/movie. Very emotional. If you don’t drop a tear after reading this book or watching this movie, please let me know. I will refund you the cost of the book or cost of renting the DVD (including pop corn, nachos, and soda).

“Call me Hope” by Gretchen Olson. Story about an 11 year old girl named Hope. Book is about how Hope lives under the pressure of her abusive mother. We generally think child abuse means physically hurting a child. Even constant verbal abuse is also child abuse. This book touched my heart. We should never ever let any child go through this kind of abuse.

About a person I had met in my life at some point in my life but could never forget him/her.

When we were living in Salt Lake City, every year, we used to receive invitation to attend the Sundance International Film Festival in Park City, Utah. That place would be crowded with internationally known movie people – stars, producers, directors, etc. etc.

One year we saw the glamorous Hollywood movie star, Sally Field. She has won the Oscar Award for best actress 2 times. She was surrounded by several directors and producers. They were having a serious discussion about something in a round table.

We were excited to see Sally Field. We liked her in the movies Mrs. Doubtfire and Eye for an Eye. My wife wanted to take a picture with her. Without realizing she is talking to some people, I go straight to her and ask her if she can pose for a picture with my wife. She smiled and said: Sure. She asked the other people to hold on for a minute until I take the picture. She stands up, puts her arm around my wife, and smiles. Click. Picture taken. I say: Thank you. She replies: You are welcome. We leave and she goes back to the round table to continue their discussion.

Now I realize I did not take a picture with her. I go to her again and ask her if she can pose for a picture with me now. The same smile and says: Sure. Again asked others to hold on. Stands up, puts her arm around me, and smiles. My wife takes the picture. I say: Thank you so much Sally. She replies: Any time. Goes back to join the conversation with others.

Internationally famous movie star. Disturbed her twice when she was having a serious conversation with a few producers and directors. Never showed any irritation. Always smiling and eager to oblige a fan’s request. No haughtiness. Down to earth. Will always remember her.

Well! Now I am going to pass along this tag to the following friends:

Please write a post on the following:

2 cities you love and why?

2 profession (other than the one you are in now) you love and why?

Tell us how you spent the day yesterday – from the time you woke up till you went to bed.