Mr Dinesh Kargutkar who runs an Indian made dental kit company has sales representatives in most tier2 and tier 3 cities and head quartered out of Mumbai and couple of regional offices in Delhi and Bangalore. He started this company after being influenced by Baba Jaswant in Varanasi. He visited Baba Jaswant who became a baba after recession struck India. During his visit, Baba showed Dinesh some ingredients which can keep all dental problems away. Both of them loudly said HARI OM and started this company ‘ Seva Danti ‘. Seva Danti has grown at a rapid pace as it was hugely backed by Baba Jaswant disciples and an emotional chord which struck all that its a complete made in India product. Dinesh managed to corporatize the organization a little and included few IIM Graduates in the head office. However his tier2 and tier3 sales force remain the local guys who work really hard for the business but they belong to all walks of life. After 4 years of success in the business, this fiscal one quarter has not made money for Seva Danti. An immediate rival, ‘Selfie smile’ backed by Baba Subramaniam,  a techie before recession got his disciple Madhav Iyer  to start this company. Selfie smile is headquartered in Bangalore and has representatives across South India and other Tier 2 and tier 3 cities. They decided not to expand into Delhi, Mumbai and other metros beyond South.

Dinesh Kargutkar is annoyed with this development and wants some disruptive ideas to come up during the WEEKLY concall. He rushes to office along with his breakfast and he decides to eat while the call is on.

The whole team assemble in the conference room and other station employees all login. The epic conference call which is a regular affair is about to begin now. Mr Kargutkar sets his desk with all the fruits and tells the office boy to get plates for his roti and subzee. Well, the conference room is almost like a shiv-sagar where varieties of break fast spread is available on the table. Dosas to idlis, upma, vada, sambhar, chutney, sandwiches, coffee, tea, badam milk etc. Couple of employees attend the call to ensure the lavish breakfast is not missed out. BY THE WAY, Its employee sponsored and not the company.

One of the team member Bhushan who is an outstation employee based out of Patna was busy milking the cow in his house when he realized that he also has to get onto the call. He keeps the phone very close to the cow and strictly instructs the animal not to make any noise while the call is on. The cow in return says Maahhaaaahhhhh. Bhushan however dials Upendra Yadav who represents the entire UP for the company. Upendra is a rich guy. His father owns a bar where all state level ministers assemble for a drink almost everyday. But Upendra is a health freak. He does not drink and is into Pahalwani. His day starts in the akhaada where he wrestles through the morning and forces seva kanti on everyone around him. Upendsra does not answer Bhushan’s call. Bhushan starts praying as his sale has dropped and he is worried about his future.

Vikas Gowda a resident of Mandya district in Karnataka is being poached by Selfie smile. He is sitting with a 30% hike in salary and a bigger slab of incentive. He is still evaluating and waiting for the management here to give an increment. However he is yet to disclose on the new offer. Almost 25 other reps, all from their respective station log in to the call.

The con call begins and they all know that there could be a serious issue. This is exactly when Dinesh started the call by addressing all. Hi All. I am sure that all of you have gathered to hear from me some serious messages across. All I want to say is thank you everyone for all that you are doing for the business. Keep getting better and  better. Competition is tough out there. You have complete freedom to work from wherever you want to and whatever you are doing, keep it going stronger. The big announcement is everyone is going to get a two month salary as a bonus in the next quarter. All employees who achieve their target are due for a promotion. Lets meet for the annual offsite soon and I will sit with you and talk to all of you individually. Good luck and do well.

”What will happen in the con call? How will Dinesh and his team face the competition? Whats going to happen? Watch the space for the part 2 of the epic con call. ”

Please feel free to reach out on FB, Linked in or my twitter account with suggestions on the extension of this story. …………..

So what if I hired right…. I still screwed up….

There has always been a debate that in order to have a right business model to expand further and make an impact, the vision needs to be towards focused hiring. At the inception stage, lot of it is driven by passion, a very minimum number of people who have a common goal. The trick is expansion and the right cultural fit.

So when I go through my small little experiences at work place, I realise the first right hire is you yourself. One should go through his/her own evaluation to really visualize if he or she is willing to invest in change management and progressive management by bringing those changes in their ownself.  I am not too old in the business and have spent close to about a decade and a half in the corporate world. However people management became a part of my life for a decade now.

My previous role gave me an opportunity to understand people better. The mid level people who were experienced professionals themselves became a part of my team. I immediately realized that its tougher than what I had thought. But did I make mistakes? Yes I did and many mistakes. The first big mistake which I made was

  1. Not treating all at par: That’s the biggest mistake that I made by treating different people differently and may not be very open about it but it did come across. The intention was not wrong but what really came about is the leader is partial towards a particular kind of people. However the reasons could be well justified but beyond a point building a favourite out of the same kind of roles and expressing it freely is not a good trait.
  2. Open book : A leader’s unpredictability and his ability to conceal his own emotions, his thoughts towards everything which is irrelevant to the business, his words, actions are all traits which makes a successful leader. In my team everyone knew that today we can get him to do this and it always worked out for them. I could be seen through and there was no sign of unpredictability.
  3. Indiscipline : Talent and ability sometimes leads you to believe that you can very well control things which obviously has worked for me. However a team is governed by discipline at your work place. As a leader if you are subject to always falter on your timelines and discipline, your zeal to get things closed within a timeframe keeps diminishing.
  4. Ineffective collaboration : Treating people for lunches, drinks or dinner or taking them for a vacation does not lead to collaboration. Collaboration is about successfully generating a mindset to succeed which is easy provided the leader is able to send across the message transparently and freely. I believe in successful collaboration but I did not do it effectively. It was a half hearted attempt.
  5. Unproductive discussions: When you realise that a team member is not able to drive results, one has to partner and discuss the concern in isolation with the individual. To a large extent I communicated that there should be a change in the manner of performance but not to the individual directly. It is definitely not a motivating message for the affected employee.
  6. My own Biased opinions : What one has done in 1947, does not hold him or her successful in 2017. A biased opinion develops over a period of time and your objective view on the whole piece gets out of the window. All you know is this person can never go wrong because your opinion is strong about the person. Not a great trait for a progressive leader
  7. Self obsession : I fell in love with myself so much that I ended up looking at all awaiting few good complements, how amazing they feel seeing me at work, how I bring life to the work place , so on and so forth. In the process certain detailing about critical aspects happening around the business starts going unnoticed.

When I sit back and think through, I realise that though in the real context, I have not failed but I did fail to recognize certain flaws at the right time to deliver the best out of all individuals who worked with me. They were all absolutely fabulous and had great journeys but did all feel motivated and amazed to work with me. The answer is no and this no is the reason of me introspecting further. A self training model is the best model to rebuild your next step in life. I am learning and I believe a spark of success has nothing to do with success in totality. Time for more awareness of your one self and constantly working on your ability drives to a greater success for the future.

I had my best experience managing some wonderful professionals who taught me lot of things which has been my best education forever in my career. Long way to go, Ratish Nair.


Bahubali 3…. Namaskara Bengaluru

Hello Bengaluru. Its 7:30 am and I have a meeting to catch up. The toughest part is to get out of the bed and get to the black coffee. Get ready fast and gulp the breakfast. But why am I doing all of it in a hurry. There is still enough time for the meeting but why the hurry. Bahubali 3 is out there. This Bahubali is a pain in the wrong side of your life. This Bahubali can kill Katappa, yedurappa, Veerappa and all the appas in few minutes.

The common man is absolutely ready to spring ahead of time for his or her meetings but Bahubali 3 needs to be convinced, cajoled and so on and so forth. Ladies and Gentleman, boys and girls presenting Bahubali 3 in our favorite city, Namma Bengaluru, THE MOST AMAZING OLA APP………

Ola and their profound drivers can make you crave like the way we were all craving to know , ‘ why did katappa kill bahubali?’ The whole city from 7:45 in the morning goes through this struggle. Funny part is the smiley which appears after all the hardwork and it seems to be mocking  you, ” sorry no cabs available.”

Ola has created huge technology around making lives convenient only for the drivers and not for travelers. A resident of Mandya district who knows nothing about Namma Bengaluru gets to be the Ola driver. GPS hai naa, why does he need to know Marathalli, Bommanahalli, kamnahalli, jeevanahalli, and all the other halli’s. The funny part is when you say elli dira( Where are you), he honestly has no clue as to where he is and definitely does not have any clue as to where he needs to reach to pick you up. But GPS hai na…

It does not end there, he still asks, drop location saaar. Then if you are honest, you pay a price for your honesty. The cab immediately gets cancelled. Whether he knows Point A to Point B but he definitely knows he cant be wasting his time covering anything in excess of 20 minute distance. His number of trips might reduce and then what about incentives. He is a smart guy but we think we are smarter. We complain, Driver denied duty and the result out of it is the most amazing piece…… Nothing. The same problem continues.

Katappa was upset after he got to know that killing Bahubali was not the right thing to do. Here we are all frustrated Katappas living with this problem of Bahubali 3. Please don’t partner with this Bahubali 3 and encourage this problem.  By the way Bahubali 3 is comfortable during lunch time and weekends before the party time starts provided it is not raining.  Got to go now friends, Bahubali 3 has graced me with a confirmation. Will chat with him as to what goes wrong in the morning.  May be Bahubali 3 has become a very important part of our life and we have started realizing that even if he does not show up everyday, we don’t mind blocking our money on OLA money.  That’s what sometimes the thought of convenience becomes more critical than the real convenience.


Happy Journey all of you.



Agony Uncle

Hello Agony uncle. How are you? I was busy beta. Sumitra aunty was upset with her relationship at home so I went out for a cup of coffee with her.

Oh but that was on Monday. What about your Tuesday?

She was feeling low so I gave her company. I felt better after I made her happy. Wednesday what happened? She wanted to go for buying an IPhone for her daughter. But you still use Nokia 1100. I just wanted to give her company

Oh and Thursday…. She wanted to enquire on the rates at snap fitness so I gave her company

And Friday. She was busy with her friends. She did not speak and what about you?

Oh me…. I watched TV at home and aunty. I think she found her agony uncle……….

Ha ha………………………………………………

This category of men who represent Kandha in the country today are referred to as Agony uncle. They appear everyday to check your happiness quotient, shopping quotient, gifting quotient, eating quotient, even if everything is fine, they always start, Kya hua, tu thodi sad kyon lag rahi hai in the most irritating tone.

But the good part about agony uncle is they don’t cross the line till they are invited to. They stay ready and prepared to leave everything and take the responsibility of the agony uncle.

They are mostly loaded with their own responsibilities but they prefer to be agony uncle to another lady. I have seen some of them even doing grocery shopping to prove they are the best agony uncle. They like to be a part of the most important discussion and that is when the girl says, ‘ tum nahin hote toh main toot jaati, u have always stood by me.’ That’s like their appraisal and no matter their increments have not happened, they are not happy with their job, but the role of agony uncle keeps them motivated.

Some agony uncle find the lady in their office. They even decide to leave the organization if the lady leaves and the icing on the cake is they join the same organization. That’s when they prove to be the best agony uncle ever. This agony uncle ensures that he plays the role of a maid to start with and a maid to end with. In between whatever he gets to hear from the lady is far from reality. He is a sophisticated maid who we refer to as the AGONY UNCLE.

I want my readers to give a big round of applause to all the AGONY UNCLE’s around them as they definitely deserve an award. Long live Agony Uncle.


The family approved tinder

Traditional, conservative, poor, rich, middle class, liberal, pseudo intellectuals have all approved this. Its the family approved tinder. The whole family goes through it and decides whether to approve or not to approve. The matrimony sites. The phenomenal business model which saw huge value in the hypocritical Indian household and completely transformed the idea into a huge success. Millions of parents are glued onto these websites to find that one suitable match which will change everything in their life. Especially the society and its people would finally say that Mr so and so got their kids married on time. It was such a fantastic function, the food was amazing and the couple looked so happy. That day the man(father) of the house would feel his life is complete and the lady(mother) would throw away all her emotional blackmailing statements in the bin.

Parents start posting their kids profile as soon as their post graduation is through. This happens especially in the case of the girl child. As soon as she turns 23, her profile is active on all matrimonial sites. Everyday few thousands of guys and families go through her profile and scan through everything. Then one fine day, an interesting family as per her parents( Interesting – great ancestral heritage, guy earning in 6 figures, OWN HOUSE, nuclear family, father a rich man) sends a liking towards her profile. The whole family gets together to ensure it works out. They accept in return and suddenly the bride’s father realizes the membership on the site is not premium so there are lot of things which he is not entitled to. He does not have an internet banking ID still created. He has an account with a PSU which is already closed for the day. His debit card is the only saving grace and out of excitement he types the PIN thrice wrongly and the card gets blocked 🙂

Sleepless night, what if the guy finds somebody else during this time? The daughter s life if not screwed , will definitely go through a turmoil ? What if the family starts feeling that the bride’s family is not interested? What if the groom s profile is not visible from tomorrow? The whole night, the parents don’t sleep. They keep thinking all the negative possible. For the first time, the lady shouts at the man and makes him feel how irrelevant he has become for not having an internet banking password.

Next morning he visits the bank and ensures everything is in order. Reaches home and first thing he does is pays the website to give him all the facilities of a premium member. He sees the contact number and calls the groom’s father. Extremely excited and almost got his daughter married in his mind, the lady constantly feeling charged up seeing her husband’s expressions. Suddenly the whole excitement comes to a standstill. He disconnects the phone and sits , rather almost falls onto the sofa. “He is a MANGLIK.” Sadness, silence, surrounds the whole atmosphere of the house. The mother starts blaming her stars, feels some bad omen is surrounding the house.

Between all this drama, a self imposed drama happening, the daughter enters the house ecstatic to share the most important moment of her life. She hugs the mother and says that her offer has come through to work with this global organization and she will be working out of Paris for the next two years. It does not bring happiness at all to both the parents. What about her future, her marriage, kids? These questions are still baffling them. The daughter however walks towards her room and closes the door. The next moment the father walks towards his laptop which he specifically purchased to get his daughter married and searches for groom of the same caste working in Paris.

Now that brings happiness back to the parents. The girl can still get the man of their community even if she is working in Paris. The celebration begins at home and few relatives are invited to participate in the celebration. This is the story of most of Indian household. After a point, the only thing that makes every Indian parent happy is when their kid’s marriage is fixed or they see some prospects around them.

Are the parents in this country absolutely involved in their kids life? Are they really self centered to see themselves getting respected by the set of hypocrites around them? Do they feel that their kids cannot be doing anything better than marrying and produce kids? Is it a regressive society? Do we think the life has no meaning without a matrimonial website? Does it give us a high when lot of people visit their child’s profile and send interest?

I don’t know what it is but its a vicious circle and a trap where I am yet to fall into. Have kept myself well protected from it and have ensured that my sister also does not fall into this trap. We have a right to chose our partner and above all we have a right to decide when we want to get married. Fall in love and then decide if you want to get married. Don’t get married and decide to fall in love, you may just end up having babies and think it to be love and that will be your life.