Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Run! Run! Run!

The world is in peril right now. A lot of people lent money to a lot of people and two years later everyone in the world is screwed. The world's most powerful nation has a bimbo as a vice presidential nominee. And Himesh Reshammiya's second movie is being released this week. Its tragic. And we surely require the best of people to lead us. It's these crisis situations that help in identifying the true leaders, the visionaries.

"Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

We are having a fire drill in the office today, spanning across 25 floors - with a whole collection of interrupted lift services and a really long stairway.

“A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.” - John C Maxwell

As the day progresses, most of us have just grown numb to the alarms and announcements. We have not identified the potential of this new scenario. But a select few have managed to show coveted traits - the kind who will steer us not only out of this crisis, but lead the whole company to great heights.

(Just to clarify, it was a drill not an actual fire hazard.)

"Hey, when the alarm rings - how about we start panicking and running around. Then they'll all get confused. All the Indians would run behind us", said a fellow batchmate, "It'll be fun."

Clearly he is top management material - in his early months of work he is already having creative ideas; and visions of leading people to some destination. Had the concept been not stupid and morally offensive - it would have percolated right up to the leadership team.

"Not just Desi junta - even local Singaporeans would follow you. Didn't you notice how obedient they are in traffic? Of course they will also join the line." commented another Desi guy. Having a deep understanding of people is essential in marketing. Occasionally some thoughts may have a tinge of mass generalization, but that can be forgiven for the greater good of the business - He is a true marketer for the coming decades.

The 10am tea break soon ended and we returned to our desks. (You may question the need for a bright 10a.m tea-break, but that rationale deserves a whole new post).

A chirpy lady was enjoying the new environment - "Won't it be fun if a fire actually broke out today during the fire drill ? The fire would spread throughout the building and nobody would do anything." No comments on this one - I'd just toss 10 points to her for the vivid imagery.

"Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity" - George Patton

For the past two hours, the fire alarm has been ringing intermittently. About 10 seconds after it begins, when our ears have pretty much become defunct, a gentle prerecorded female voice streams from the speakers - "Ladies and Gentlemen, please note the fire alarm has been activated." Thankfully, we are deaf by then and her voice doesn't disturb our work.

"Why do they make such dull announcements - instead of giving instructions, why don't they crack jokes instead ? It will surely lighten the mood of the fire situation." Mixing humour with stressful situations is the right concoction for success. Here's a trait I can hope to replicate.

My favourite comment came from the guy to my left - "Hey let's light a fire and check if these sprinklers actually work." This one simply indicates that everyone can't be a leader. Some have to be left behind to be whipped and disciplined.

Here's a video from FailBlog which suprisingly fits the theme. We'd sold a lot more shampoo had all the employees been motivated like this guy.


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If you liked this post, you may also like:
The Laptop Crisis
DIB 342 - The Roadtrips

5 comments:

  1. Liked the guy having top management mettle!
    And a big WOW!! at the guy in the video - I bow to thee!

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  2. Nice one...I have been trying to fit faces to your batchmates who gave wonderful comments....

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  3. Hey Arvind,
    Sorry to hijack the thread, but I am actually thinking of organising a 'Bloggers watch Karzzzz' outing! :P So far I have 4 willing individuals. Let me know if you still think you can tolerate Himesh for 3 hours! :P
    Sayesha

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  4. its amazing, how similar everyone has turned out to be, almost exact, to the word similar commets at my place during a fire drill, it seriously spooks me out!

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