Sunday, 16 December 2007

I would rather build Toilet Paper than an Enterprise Tool ;)

Yes and I mean it. The Best experience I had was when working on the content website that Aaron called as Me-Media ;) Yes content of the people,by the people and for the people... did you just call it Democracy? Yeah I would call it Contocracy :D. So back to what I would like to do, today when discussing on the Business Modal for my upcoming venture one of my friend and potential partner said that he would like to work over something that big companies can easily use, I said I would rather like to create Toilet papers than Enterprise softwares that have a vary wague future just becuase every Tom, Dick and Harry are in competition.... Well I really mean that the Tom, Dick and Harry of the internet business aka Google, Microsoft and Zoho are in the race ;)

Back to why I think something like Toilet papers can be the great market is just becuase every single human would like to use it , atleast once a day ;) and upon requirement more than once... though I dont refer to iToliet(Shit on Internet?) as of now, I really mean that coming up with a software that can just be used commonly as much or as much more than a toilet paper ;). Something that a person does everyday and would do everyday that too without fail?

Now let me go back to brains and ask what it is? Would you ind doing the same and share?

Saturday, 8 December 2007

Its Bad but I am gonna fight it... Yes another toxic Leadership!!!

Well My call today to get convinced to stay on what I am doing was not very fruitful. I am pretty upset over a few things told to me and it seems that I really got into the toxic company(partnership) where things were shown in a different way. Anyways though this post and platform is not to discuss on who I am upset about... I would really like to bring a few points about Toxic Leadership that can cause major breakdowns...though I dont think I will be able to put up the tackle techniques.... I would ask/request you to do it here....

1. Trust :- Toxic leadership betrays trusts for self goals. How do you trust leadership?
a. When you know the leadership had been going wrong?
b. When the leadership has betrayed?
c. When Leadership really meant decision making?

Ok.. I am haltin off here and want to take some time to think about a few things and come back with a bang later this week....

Friday, 30 November 2007

Not much Blogging as I am on MARS these days

Dont get surprised.... I still havent won the trip to NASA from Aamir Khan its just that I have moved to a new place called MARS. I am sure your eyebrows are stretched but if you havent met me or spoke to me since last week its OK I can answer you. After our company got acquired a few months ago I happened to move to a new workplace where the acquiring company works from and this place gives me a feel of MARS or rather a Alien nation. Luckily I had some not good experiences lately and saw 2 movies concerning Aliens and I am sure I am in a Alien nation.

To justify this I read a few qualities of Alien's and am just trying to match them up here:

1. Who George Bush?
Means that Aliens dont know who is with them and who is around... Either no one cares about no one or No one want to care about no one.

2. Everyone is scared of Everyone?
Well last when I was in US a friend of mine told me that since the 9/11 everyone is afraid of everyone... cause you dont know who will do what to you.... the same thing applies to aliens and the same I feel out here.... I see many worried faces from the Aliens as if they are going to be killed.

3. Yada yada yada lada mada kada ...Did you understand ? No? I just used Marsisi
Well Aliens dont care whether you understand their language or not, they just want to be themselves and talk what they and no one else understand. Well it was better in Germany when people were talking in German but made sure that the eyes speak in English.... Veda and Kari I understand what you must have been feeling ;)

4. General -> Kernel -> Major -> Leiutinant -> Soldier -> Ardali -> Sweeper... its all about hirarchy
Aliens only know that the one with a gun in hads is their boss... so when they dont see guns they run crazy chickens... and ask whos got the gun ;)

So what to do when you come in the land of Aliens?

I will make up some points and meanwhile revise myself over the weekend... you be ready to read what you can do to make'em humans...

Thursday, 29 November 2007

When Team is about Head Counts , Quality is a Grave

I am damm very upset. If getting 10 heads can achieve deliveries Quality is going to be under a 6 ft grave PERIOD. Yes and why not Heads dont form Team's so if Team's are on paper I am sure deliverables are just outputs and not results.

In an interview I gave a while back for a Unit Head for a reputed firm I was asked by a very Sr. Manager "How much do you care about Quality?", I answered "There are 3 mistakes in my resumes that you havent identified yet". I did not mean to say that you did not see it I meant that if you are looking for a resource to work in your organisation I am not the one, But if you want a associate to work along and add value to your firm You can look for me. Also the message meant that I definately care a bit more about quality than you do ;) Not the right way but your guess is correct that I never got a call back from there.

So the objective here is that Outsourcing has changed its meaning.... Its more about $ and heads than quality and softwares. This week I luckily happened to interact with a startup CTO who thinks else, he thinks that more and more startups are looking at building things fast paced and getting it ready for the markets than making sure that its quality coded. Since I promised him not to disclose his name he made a comment that "Its not how good a developer you are, Its about how fast can you develop it". Surprising? Well more and more startups work this way now.... I recently happened to another startup that has built another social networking product and just to the woes of Software development "A Javascript alert for testing remained in the delivery saying "Beta : Step 1"

Ok its 9:30 and I have to find my way back home so that I can stay up all night ;)

Thursday, 22 November 2007

Reactions - A Bitter truth

Off lately when I was been told that someone thinks that my capabilities in certain areas are not optimal and thus I cannot play a given role... there was a reaction bubble waiting in within there wanting to come out.... however I knew where the opinion emerged from and why it came in.... however there was no way to keep the reaction bubble within and I just had to get it out... what best source than the blog can it be....

Reactions most of the times are instant.... meaning if someone talks bullshit about you, you either react positive or negative, For example Yesterday when I went to Rhushi and said if you dont fix this in next 20 mins you have to work over the weekend and finish it... the reaction was obvious... "What Shit are you talking about?" (Well this is what his face said) but the reaction came in... another example when someone asked me for a additional leave upon aggreement I saw a very smiling face.... All are nothing but reactions...

I have been learning to avoid reactions.... one thing I am successfully able to do for the past few days is hold on the breath when the shit is thrown.... meaning avoiding instant reactions... when I discussed this with some people they say that it loads up your mind and heart and troubles you, however I feel that it really doesnt if it is done in the right way..... here are the few steps I discovered for myself to avoid reactions....

1. Keep smiling... when a shit is thrown at you.
Many times I have seen people reacting same moment, next hour, next day or after a long... well its not about reaction.. its about how the reaction goes. lately when Manmohan Singh was told that he is a puppet Prime Minister he reacted... putting his resignation offer or defending the government... Well I feel the moment this goes it gives a wrong message. The calm look and feel troubles the people who really throw shit at you.

2. Did I gauge if it was shit or crticis?
Many of us dont understand when shit is thrown and when critic is done... A critic comment is a signal that you have to improve somewhere... while a shit is a blame targetting for no improvement but just liability... before reacting You need to understand that whatever is thrown at you is been understood in the same way by both thrower and receiver...This gives you enough time to go back and get calm ;)

3. Have you seen a white crow?
I always understood that when people throw shit at you:

a. You are making considerable progress... and jealousy is wanting to hit you..
b. They dont want to part with you, since they feel that the shit can loosen your confidence
c. They are the same mental state a CAT is when she closes her eyes and drinks the milk thinking that no one is looking at her.... making blamers think that they can just throw shit on you without getting hands dirty..
d. They are wanting to provoke you to make the same mistake that they did ;)

So before you react to anything.... make sure that you understand what, how and where of the reactions... after all Management is not about reactions...

Tuesday, 13 November 2007

Tuesday, 30 October 2007

You will not be sacked ... But I dont know what we will do to you

So just a few days after I wrote the blog on the attitude a man usually carries when he is employeed and not having much tasks I actually got to experience the answer that came from a higher authority.... I am not so much convinced with the answer and I would like to say that No wonder people feel its time to get out ...

Here are a few answers I have and I would answer if I am been asked the same question by anyone who is employed with me or work with me:

1. Who Said you dont have tasks? Can you build a tumblr like product for me in the time you are free?

2. Oh Really? Let me fire you then.... I will fire you with the same passion I am running the company with, I will fire you with same zeal that I work with, I will fire you with the same affection I have with you and you have with your work.... Now if you dont have tasks can you replace fire with Ignite please?

3. Honestly I dont have something concrete for you now, we will wait for next few days which will give me time to find something reasonable for you... till then why dont you use this time to mentor the others who are in the same situation?

4. Would you mind sharing a few of my responsibilities? See I am loaded with Seine, Yukon, Patches, Meetings, Business, Blogs , Forums and Appraisals... take over a few from me and that should work for you great...

Now do you want a few more answers? Does that give you enough comfort to keep your mouth shut for a while? .... Well If I was you I would have said NO because the bigger point is missing here....


I would have told you why you dont have tasks today and .........

1. Why we dont have tasks today?
2. Why we can do something else to cover time?
3. Why there are delays?
4. Why I cant tell you what is going on the business front?
5. What is going on to make sure that you have work?
6. What will I do if I cannot get tasks for you?
7. What will you have to do to make sure that you have tasks?
8. Why I dont want you to think likethis?
9. Why you are important to me....

Do you want to know more?

Sunday, 28 October 2007

I will be sacked soon

Just trousing through Yahoo today I somewhere agreed with Jerry Yang's recent statements .... Give me 100 days and I shall have a answer to the competition world... The trousing led me to write this post that says HOW TO KNOW THAT YOU WILL BE SACKED SOON. Now when I read through this page I feel that forgetting what a insecure employee feels it is important for the employers to provide this confidence. Just because someone feels that it is this way should not mean that he should lead his way to a new Job or simply quit....

Now why this post comes here... Mainly because 99 of the 100 times an employer/Manager/Boss is not able to provide the comfort that can give any employee the feeling of security and stability.. thus no wonder the moment a employee see's something fishy he starts looking out... and why not anything that is perishable is going to rott.... and who would like to eat or be Rotten? Just recently when the Ex Indian captain of the highest earning cricket board Rahul Dravid put down his papers as the skipper of the team, it just took a few more days for the selectors to put him down the team... What a message this is.. not only to the cricketers who are fighting for a place in the Indian Team but also to those of us who are employed by someone.... If you dont have tasks you will be Out geez. What a loss it is.. and what loosers are they who do this...

So coming back to the zone where we started it is atmost important that employers make sure that they provide enough visibility as far as employees are considered in terms of stability and security... morever the attitude of people also forces employee to think that they can be sacked if there job is done by someone else or they are left with no job....

Believe me this invites
1. Politics Which definitely is Evil in any form
2. No Mentoring
3. Generation of Toxic leaders who want to get experience not share it
4. Overall performance of the organisation
5. Secrecy behaviours...
6. IDIOT's (I DID IT ON TIME) Attitude with I DID IT ALL Attitude...

I have to rush home now ..... I am turning 29 today and still at office...Let me keep this post running so I get more time to write about this when I continue my page on Idiots....

Sunday, 21 October 2007

Outsourcing sucks since there are not many co-located teams

Well Yes Yes..... I still work for a company that works on outsourced projects and that's why my post comes into action.. since when you do more you know more.... The misery of outsourcing always had been the domain knowledge and product understanding... and for the time been lets not use words like product vision or product UVP's... The more of technical teams I have dealt with, the more I realised that with the on-site - offshore model the understanding between the teams work but doest work that great.....

Reasons? in one of the Project kick off meetings earlier Sarah who was our Customer Services Director said that because of one small functionality lapse in the product a major security threat could have occured... and Yes the team sitting offshore could not understand this becuase it was never told on what is the IMPACT of not doing something... moreon sometimes the teams developing the softwares really really do not understand the business or functional use of what they develop...

Now lets get back to the basics.... Why Outsourcing sucks when the teams are not co-located...

A. The whole world talks and implements the distributed global development and enjoys the perks and benefits that come from cost reductions... Now what they dont understand is "DOES THE THING MEAN THE SAME TO YOU AS IT DOES TO THE PERSON SITTING 10,000 MILES AWAY FROM YOU?" geez... sometimes it does most of the times it doesnt.... Remember Project Management is a biggest challenge here .... Managing distributed Teams have their own problems from communication to conversions.

B. One Point of Contact
My previous company believed in ON-SITE - CORDINATOR concept.. one person who knows the team well stays with the Product Owners and co-ordinates with the development teams to realese what is expected..... Geez what a misery it is now I understand how things can be screwed with this approach... I am sure you would want to know WHY? and I am going to write it out sometime .....

C. I was waiting on this...
Recently something of much importance happened with the current developments that I am involved in.... There is a much awaited , Big cost , predominantly important project that needs to be kicked of.... however there are Teams waiting out here to begin... Why? We are waiting for something from the other end? Yes .... this is what you hear when you walk pass the development teams that are doing offshore development with the Business Analysts and Product Owners including the sponsors are sitting out of the location somewhere in the world...

Anyways I dont want the count to reach Z and then I have to put up a new numbering to tell you the issues .... the point of this post is to understand the importance of co-located team...

So when I say co-located teams I really mean that the Dev, QA, Product Owner , Product Manager and sponsors.... all sit in a place where the eyes can meet the eyes.... Now why this is important?

1. Teams can be involved in ad hoc discussions which can change the drive and path of the product and development... And if you think that it can still work by people involving offshores in scheduled meetings you are the one to come out and think out of what you are doing always.... The Idea of bringing the iPod did not come in a shceudled meeting ;) The Yahoo citations were not happening when development was talking to product owners... and so on.... ad hoc discussions happenings across desks bring innovations.... and you have to agree that many a times ideas trigger when you are not at work ;)

2. Teams know who and how .... meaning which customers want what and when and how they will use it and HOW it will affect the world.... in such cases you can trust that you will not build something that was NOT urgent and was just built becuase someone thought it should be like that...morever the bigger part of the story that is visibility in the development activity and the product vision is provided to everyone that is a part of it and not just one few...

3. Catch the responsible and Hold the accountable....
Many a times I have seen that NON Direct access to owners and champions along with sponsors or customers lead to a lot of mediation and hierarchies.... which causes a lot of trouble in the end.... remember he said that we have to do this? Or do you know who can get the answer for me? Or He told me that you should do this? Or I had a word and this is how it should be? Or I am working on it? grrrrrrrrrrrrrr.... these make it look sick...

4. Eureka .....
The call is not very common for dislocated (THIS IS A DELIBERATE USE INSTEAD OF DISTRIBUTED)... majorly I havent seen someone saying Eureka ..... "Hey Russ .. see what we can get here" Something I heard a long ago from James our developer who told Russ our Product manager who was sitting opposite his desk to show him that he has developed a very light weight User selection interface....

Now you want me to go Hundred dont you? Well I would want to continue..... but time is the key and so is work.... I could steal this time out specially today because I see when the product manager is not present .... outsourcing sucks...

Friday, 19 October 2007

Narayan Murthy says DO NOT WORK LONG Hours I disagree

When Natwar posted an article from the mentor of several thousand professionals all over the world Narayan Murthy... yes the Big Boss and the Chief Mentor of Infosys technologies...that talked about how long working hours are not productive and harms the individual and the organisational goals.... I was believed to Agree and Disagree..... though I do believe in a fact that longer hours in the office can harm... but they cannot always harm.. Yes there are ways to be
Productive in the office even if you have to work long hours and 6-7 days.... eventually somethings are always mis understood... working long hours do not necessarily mean LONG WORK HOURS.... I work long almost everyday and that too for last 9 years.... not a single time I have felt that I could be less productive.... not sure what my bosses talk about it... but anyways... my personal opinion doesn't go very much inline with the Chief Mentor of Infosys.....

However I completely agree with him that you should love your job but not your company.... I have been following this since a long and have always mentioned that "When someone says that he is emotionally attached to a company..... To me he is either lying or he is on a job hunt..." anyways that's just experience.. and I am sure if you meet the variety of such species you will agree ;)

back to working late I would really like to mention why I don't agree with Mr Murthy....

1. Longer hours not necessarily mean work
Yes I agree with you Sir.... however the remaining part of the time that is not work is not definitely a waste..... Not many really waste time playing games . TT , chit-chats and gossips... some of us who like to work long hours also want to read more, write more, share what we have and grab what we don't have.... For the last 8 yrs of my longer working hours I have learnt several things that I could have never learnt all my life working 9 - 6... and if I have to do some additional work in this time I dont blame the company here, because something has to be given for something that is taken.... I always thought that its a give and take relationship isn't it? cut the crap.... back to my experience in the last few years I have always found more energy within after 7:30 PM when most of the office is on the verge to go.... this energy is due to the fact that I work not only to finish what I was supposed to finish in my 8-9 hours but also to finish the task that I am going to live my 40-45 yrs of life..... Yes and that is knowledge....

2. What's with the Balance?
Life is all about balancing... work - life , bank , walk and strive and relationships.... I have seen people mentioning that it is very important to have a work - life balance... and why does someone need to think about it in the first place? I get 2 hrs a day with my kids without any disturbance when I play with them and also try to be a part of their daily schedule... I get distributed hours with my family and kids yet again to handle other things.... A full of Sunday is always used to make sure that I do something helpful for my family... and if I have to cut a few hours of my sleep for that I think that's a bonus not a cut..... Not sure if you guys remember watching James Bond series Tomorrow never dies when the diamond merchant says to the news reporters.... "We get life only once a time .. why waste time sleeping?" The balance is always there ... they are not very smart people who cannot manage there 10-12 hrs out of the 24 for their own....

3. You will get sick if you work long and late?
The only reason I think can get sick of is the workplace....damm that bought a giggle on your face didn't it? Yes been in office longer and late can bring you to a point where your eyes don't want to see more of the office place..... But did I already tell you that swapping team places and co-locations help in getting rid of this thing? Yes the workplace layout needs to be manipulated and edited every few weeks / months so that the team feels different .... however thanks to a high attrition rate in the software companies they see new faces always :D that was just a joke BTW...

4. Mistakes? If you work long?
And what mistakes are we talking here about? I am sure not many people think that mistakes are not done deliberately... and are not done ONLY when you are not in state of mind... damm we need some science out here to support my statements.... anyway... when I see someone saying that longer work make you irritation level rise earlier than when you work 9 - 6? Boooof... that was a bullet without a gun to me..... The irritation level can be high even if you work shorter NO ? All you need is a better work environment that irritates you... So I remember a guy who always worked 9 - 5 but was always irritated because he did not liked smiling faces around.... ahh there I Go... I thought that irritation has something to do with the nature of the person... you cannot expect a cold blooded man to leave anger away just by making him friends with his biggest foe can you? So when we talk about bigger mistakes I think they are not directly linked to longer hours but the quality of the hours spent.... someone can burn his 8 hour long brainy cycles in a minute if he has to deal with a creature in the office that doesn't understand one thing in one time... Now you agree is it?

And now let me go back to My List of advantages ......

1. I am always at a startup
All my career I have always preferred working with small companies .... many don't know but the objective was to work hard and make sure that the small becomes BIG sometime... for me Life is too short to know the shortest of the world... and if Internet and other facilities provide you a source to know a better part of this world with just a few extra hours of you ... is it not a BUY 1 GET 2 Free deal? Remember You are the smallest of the creature in the world.... only hardest of your efforts are going to give you best est of the results and success's..... so every day is a new beginning of a day with your company and 8 hrs is just a startup to understand what a world wants from you......

2. How many of us know today if Britney Spears lost the visiting rights to her kids today? Or know that YouTube is blocked in China from today?
I haven't seen many of the 9 - 6 personalities doing anything once they reach home than sitting gossiping, shopping or putting their heated Asses in front of the IDIOT box.... reason? Ask Savio.... Once talking to him he said .... "No matter I reach home at 4 in the evening or 11 in the night the feel of been tired is the same....." and damm that applies to many.... how many of you after reaching home have opened a exciting Harry Potter Novel that you have already read 3 times? or how many of you have spent time watching the National Geographic and writing a thesis on why Lions are more prone to Sex than Tigers? geeeezz.... well honestly many of us when we reach home really don't want to work more because we just got back from it bloody hell.... SO how many of us really update ourselves after 6 when we reach home?

3. I work Long to Give My team a confidence....
what do you expect your security personal to do when you ain't in the office? BE AWAKE AND AVAILABLE... No? Yes .. that's what I do when I am awake and working late and longer... I make sure that I am with my time or ahead of my team to make sure that they don't have blockers ahead waiting for them ... just because I am not there...... Now don't you dare talk about empowering and dependencies here ..... It has no connections.... I work long so that my team has a feeling that Someone is there..... It may be ME or SOMEONE else.... and that is one of our objectives right? specially when people call us leaders?

4. I have a flair of advantage
Google did not start working 9 - 6.. nor did Steve Jobs kept a work life balance when he started APPLE?..... so If you are a start up You have to work long so that your future can be smooth , relaxed and convenient.... Working late gives me fair amount of advantage over my competition... competition that stays in and out of my organisation.... When I work long I compete with the outside world, gain more knowledge, work towards achieving my goals and gaining that upper hand that can help me accelerate my skills.... However I am not a very strong believer of showing that I work late.... I work late for myself and my tasks to finish... and not for MY COMPANY....

5. I sleep less to sleep more....
I always heard some statements made by the biggie managers... WORK HARD PARTY HARDER.... and if you are a bit aware of Ramayana you must be knowing Kumbhakarna ... who really followed it... so when you really go to vacate yourself on vacations you party hard.... and I am sure you don't need any special request to party harder... the moment you get to party you party harder anyways....

6. Do I need to mention more?
OK Let me wait to the reader comments and I shall shoot more of shit at you...

Thursday, 18 October 2007

How disguisting it is to work with Idiots?

With my keyboard not allowing me time to write about the book that has been waiting since long... I started my new chapter on "How to be efficient working with Idiots" with a pen and paper yet again... and hell Yes I am on my second page.....

Let me write the extracts tonight and on the weekend when I finish the long waited lost continuity....

Monday, 1 October 2007

Do you know the GOD's and the DOG's of your Project?

OK Lets find them... Comment or reply to my Email... lets list the characteristics of the GOD's and the DOG's of your project.....

Beware both can be dangerous if not handled correctly... and one complements the others ;)

Sunday, 30 September 2007

What is a Project for you?

reading through PMBOK (For those Managers who are new to PMI ;) it is the Project Management Body of Knowledge), This definition hit my mind :

"A project is a temporary endeavor undertaken to create a unique product, service, or
Well when the PMI defined this they definitely had more to say ... but while I would like to elaborate on this definition leaving aside the technical definitions of the project... It would be good to know what does a Project mean to you?

As per PMI it means that a Task that has some definite begining and some definite end which is derived from the output of the task compels to form a Project... Now lest go beyond these lines and understand what else does a Project contains when it is defined.....

A Project is definitely a task that involves one or more full time and/or part time resources.

WHat more can you think of?

Saturday, 22 September 2007

Friday, 21 September 2007

In Search of Authenticity

So finally the quest for Authenticity begins....I had a call and an invitation to the Lead India Group discussion for their initiative effort to find a better leader from the mass. Ofcourse I am excited to be there and see how the process is going to take place and how the leader would be found simply becuase my definition of leadership in the past few days had been shattered completely.

To me leadership had always been a strong character who had a drive and passion to achieve something with the help of the vision that was shared and action that involves making the hands dirty and all of this without expecting that the fame and money will come to you. While I still believe that all of the above with several other things can make a Strong leader I am still in a dilemma over the authenticity of those leaders who are away from these things in reality however pretend to be great leaders...

So how will we authenticate the best and not consider the toxic leaders ... who just want to go high with a COMPLETE SELFISH ATTITUDE and are no where close to the fact that leadership is generating success and not acquiring it?

There are ways to do this specially... and in the past I have done this and I for sure have removed several people from my "Ideal Leaders" list..

1. Do they have a vision that has meaning?
Many leaders specially the hybrid leaders talk about the vision that is more of theory and stolen ideas... These type of leaders always create a vision that is not showing enough visibility to anyone including the visionary himself. The easiest way to track is see if the vision is ready to be shared...

2. Do they build Trust or enforce it?
A Variety of commodity leaders try to enforce trust by faulty promises , mis use of authorities and by touching the soft corners at personal levels to build trust... well these things are good as far as sales are considered but not leadership... A leader builds trust based on what he lets his Team do by letting them do what and how they want to do it.... trust is built in the formal case it is enforced belief.... for instance XXX is the best person in this office doesnt build trust but a fear.... leaders believe in trust yet dont like people to be afraid of them...

3. Do they empower?
Well empowering is been mis-understood by many, several occasions I have seen leaders under the name of empwoering really want to keep control and direct what one should do and in what way... empowering needs trust not only from the leader but also from the person who is getting empowered..... The least of the belief I ahve seen is empowering is misunderstood to be an opportunity... a leader who sells empowering with opportunity is a salesman and not a leader.... empowerment requires compassion, sensitivity psychological insight, trustworthiness, consideration, and the ability to teach, evaluate and coach.

I wont talk more of the important tasks of Authentic leader here like Management, Vision, Trust, Action, Politics and feedback.... I will leave you to define on each front how would you like to find the authenticity making use of the expected characteristics of the Ideal leader....

several other factors and characteristics of the leaders can be used to trace the authenticity... but before you look for authenticity of a leader be sure that you are looking at the right guy...

In search of authenticity you would really like to evolve yourself whether you need to be a leader yourself or follow the right leader.... and If I am not mistaking the worlds greatest sinners were also leaders.... its upto us to decide whether they are commodity leaders or reality leaders...

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Am I Happy?

Somebody asked me today "Why do you whistle at work?" and I really had to question myself on why.... gathering the answers I realised that its the Happiness that makes me
1. Whistle around
2. Roam around the office
3. Kick ass myself to do more or less work
4. Worry only when required
5. Keep Smiling

Yes the answer is Happiness ... the same thing that we derive from each atom or molecule we use or utilise at work. Going back to my work on Work is better than sex and the subsequent extracts that I wrote in their adds to my happiness..

a. The place we spend maximum of our time is not home and if you are not happy at the place where you are for the maximum time means that you are not happy at all

b. Enjoying work at work is as easy as working for what you ahve been always working for and trying to work it out in the best possible way

c. A notrious kid is the happiest person in the classroom...and if the classroom is full of notorious students its fun to be there.... how can you be enjoying sitting with 50 heads of which 49 look at you only when they have to abuse you or in better words how can you enjoy food in a restaurant when you see everyone except you making a puke face at the plates.

Coming back to the point the workplace appears better no matter what is going on only if you enjoy doing what you are doing though it is something that you do not want to do... learning to control on how not be sad and if you are too optimistic like anyone I admire.... learning to be Happy.

So let me leave you thinking on
1. Do you really enjoy what you do?
2. Do you appreciate your own work?
3. Do you think you are working with happiest people?
4. Do you think you enjoy STress busting even if its not of your interest?
5. Do you think you add value to what you do?
6. Do you think you can go beyond what you do?
7. Do you think aspirations are meant to be dreamt, reality is to face what you are doing?

Well try answering this and you come to know if you are Happy or not.... And do remember dont be Toxic or put your fuzzy logic in here.... cause if you are not happy you are NOT Happy the fact that you are not happy can add to make you happy about been unhappy.

Tuesday, 11 September 2007

Hush the Technology

The WebOS market is growing stronger inspite of the recent Office 2.0 and Enterprise 2.0 announcement done recently... while the world still wants to move and think about the semantic worls... Ajax is driving the second gear with the complete Web OS solution....

Have a look at

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

Thanks to ALL My Teachers

For Teaching me how to be:
Honest, Loyal, Hardworking, Effective, Effecient and above all How to be a Good Human.

Thanks to Shahnaz Miss - Jr and Sr. Kintergarden and 2nd Grade Teacher
Thanks to Aruna Miss my 3rd grade Teacher who taught me that fight is not the solution to problems.
Thanks to Nafisa Miss my 4th grade teacher who taught me not to be arrogant.
Thanks to Ajitha Miss my 5th grade teacher who taught me that Patience can lead me to success
Thanks to Bhaskaran Miss my 6th grade teacher who taught me to be awake when listening to something important.
Thanks to Shamshad Miss 7th for teaching me aggression
Thanks to Naidu Miss 8th grade for teaching me that the first priority should always be your responsibilities
Thanks to Ghatge Sir 9th and 10th grade teacher to make me realise the importance of money
Thanks to Gaikwad Madam my Jr. College accounts teacher who taught me the importance of been true.
Thanks to Ravinder Madam my Computer trainer who taught me how not to judge someone by what someone does.
Thanks to Abida my wife to teach me that loyalty and trust keep the bonds stronger.
Thanks to Mark to teach me what Management means.
Thanks to Every Single Teacher I have dealt with to teach me to what I am today....

A very Happy Teachers Day to everyone...


Saturday, 1 September 2007

Rewards : Do they Motivate? - II

In my earlier post regarding Do rewards Motivate? and to my promise in the same post to tell you what would be an Ideal Reward like..... I felt the need to explain the differentiation between rewardful and rewardless motivations... To what I feel and I can easily describe why rewards were ever introduced is to create a passion in the people to do things better to have optimum or more than optimum results and to think beyond the boundaries that they work under.... I am not sure if I can call it extrinsic Motivation..... but the reason I feel I can call them extrinsic motivation is the fact that the motivation is in form of some or the other sort of rewards... this somehow clearly mean to me that the moment rewards are off the motivation can go for a toss... surprising no? The other fact about the extrinsic motivations is that it comes with a cost which obviously not so very easy to be managed by startups and smaller organisations who have to work over limited costs until they grow bigger. One of the blog post I read from a startup CEO was "How to Cut down Costs" and if of course talked about costs related to non business activities.

So lets leave what we don't have to opt for... I am sure all of you would be wanting to know the other side of motivation that does not ask for tangible rewards. But like any other product sale this type of motivation needs COMPLETE support from the individuals... Yes we are talking about the intrinsic motivations... the same that lead the leaders of countries , CEO's, Business Managers and many others to create a path to success by way of fantabolous innovations and aspirations... Yes creating a passion and intrinsic motivation can be the Ideal Reward.... The reward that can help someone achieve goals not only in line to organisation goals but beyond that.

So Whats the tangibility of this Ideal Reward?
Who Gives this Award?
How can it motivate those who look money as rewards?
What type of Employers can reward them?
Is it only verbal and nothing tangible?
and of course hell lot of questions that I see driving 90 miles an hour in your heads...

So to begin with the promotion to be intrinsic motivated is not at all tangible... you wont get any motivation in a handy form... however intrinsic motivation will lead you work towards something that you have always wanted to do...

When we started TechShepherds Software that was the Idea... and the way the motivation went to the associates was through a share in the profits of the organisations directly... how fun it was when I really saw everyone working as if it was their own company... of course challenges came for every hard or strategic decisions we made or the approach we took... and that's how the empowering for most worked.... to that matter 5 out of the 13 run their own setups big or small and I am sure they follow the same approach towards success now... Yes create a motivation that makes everyone feel been a part of it and just not closer.

Who can reward here or who creates this passion within?
Yes its the leadership that works in front or behind the scene here.. remember The Commodity Leaders have no role to play here, specially because the commodity leaders want to Empower Themselves to achieve success...

How can it motivate those who look for Tangible gifts?
So the answer here goes for 2 layers of people... this cannot be implanted in them who:

1. Think that the Employees/ Resources are a liability.
2. Think that money and designation is the only way to grow.

Is it only Verbal?
Yes it comes in different forms and different stages... Which I would really like to share....

What are the Stages of this reward or how this motivation works and helps?
1. Create a feel of responsibility and intrinsic interests in the goals the organisation is working for... (remember this is not easy and needs lot of understanding of the resources you work with). A typical phscycological study of human behaviours might be required. Also remember that the leaders have to show a vision of the organisation and not self....

2. Understand the Objectives and Goals from the Team and individuals, its very important to do that... for instance if someone has core interests in making movies he might not be a good developer but he definitely can be a good Product Analyst or a Web Designer. It might not be easy to understand this too... You wont find many people who can tell you what they want to do in their life.... but all will conclude to earn money and retire ;)

3. Identify the rockers and the boulders.... both of these types cannot be motivated so do not waste your time creating intrinsic strategies on them...

4. Throw responsibilities but do not control. Passion at work is affected badly when responsibilities handled by the associates are been directly and minutely controlled by someone. The effect it has is the Member who has intrinsic interests have a feel of failure and thus been controlled. This can also make the intrinsic motivated run on a different side.

5. Let the motivation be transferred.... and let the authorities , visibility and responsibilities rotated... this helps the teams and the players to be very effective to work towards a goal.

6. Let them have their shares....
Its very important that the players with intrinsic motivations get their share of success in whatever form it comes... this also means that the leaders have to let these players accelerate well and at times well enough to overtake the leaders themselves... Solidatory success needs to be lonely settled with them... one of the good qualities of players that are intrinsically motivated is that they thrive for the next thing and want to move fast... the speed of the organisation and individual goals should be able to match this... else its too late.

7. Praise and Curse
Doesnt go in the same words though... make sure that the innovations from every player is praised and whenever required failures are cursed so that the feel of failure lead them to success... its very important to de-motivate the players so that they understand what , when , how , where and which is important for their lives. Make use of talented hunour to give the message out. Use quality humour to praise and show whats wrong, Be direct and clear when required, Be hard and firm when necessary and be Soft and calm when must. All of these help the person to identify himself and find a way to move in the direction of desires and aspiritions.

Well there are many more thingsz that you can definitely do.... unfortunately I think its enough at this moment if this post works as a motivation for you to motivate others to do miracles...

Remember Our Teachers and Mentors have made us, and we have to take their seat to be equally effecient and effective for others...

Sameer Shaikh

Tuesday, 21 August 2007

Replace the Issues or Fix it?

What do you do when you find issues with ?

1. The Product you are working on?
2. The tasks you are doing?
3. Colleagues?
4. Your Boss?
5. Yourself?

Do find the answers ... and I will share a quick resolution tip to problem solving....

Sunday, 19 August 2007

The Learning attitude

What a Waste it was!!!
Damm if it was done like this we would have not wasted blah blah blah
I wasted X years of my life in school

and what not.... I am sure you may have encountered these lines few or many times a day or week or month or whenever.... but something that can change these lines is the attitude within you that somehow we ignore... Yes I am talking about the learning attitude... Well you might end up saying I am a curious A** so I want to learn everything... but just go back a few years and count how many times you have used a word *waste*... A recent incidence and something that happened a few weeks ago just got me to write more about this... I would like your opinion on a few words said by different people here and then we can talk about the Learning attitude...

I think everything that is coming to me is a new learning for me... so whichever Technology or Project I work on is going to be the Best for Me -- Seetha

I think I wasted all this time on been this project... I have learnt No new thing -- Some One I dont want to disclose

Recently Ahh... I got a complete different requirement but anyways I dont think my work is a waste cause I learnt how to mount a NFS on a windows box for a linux machine -- Phil

Before I could waste more of my time doing this I think I should walk off -- Someone recently

Well so all of this teaches me that their is a breed in the world who knows and thinks that everything that they do is going to add something to their knowledge and is going to be a valuable earning for them and there is another breed that thinks that something that is not known is only learning... be it Technology or any other thing.... Which one do you think you gonna get on? For me obviously it should be the former .... and why not... Project Management teaches me new thing everyday.. one way or the other... been a father teaches me a new thing every day, playing a husband teaches me to make different excuses to keep awake late and work or watch TV ;) new learnings everyday.... So for those whom who think that ONLY that thing is a learning which they did not knew then their age is not enough to identify what they have to learn....

So here a few tips to those who really want to be on the side of learn from everything that comes to you...

1. Be Curious
2. Be Inquisitive
3. Listen and think to what others say
4. Question them not for the sake but to know why they say what they say
5. Confusion is a mother-in-law of failure.... either is bad without the other

Hope you learn something from this post ;)

Friday, 17 August 2007

How to Find the right Guy?

Hmmm... How to judge the right resource? when Rama on his blog asked this question I really wanted to blog the same day... unfortunately it took more than 2 months for me to find back the notepad scribble I wrote and bring it back as this Post. The other reason to bring this in is also a comment that appeared from Kari on the earlier blogpost Are your best guys in Action . So how to find the right guy for you is surely a question that Bill Gates or Steve Jobs must have asked themselves.. I am sure they must be having the closest answer and so can we. While I look to the interview process that is been followed manywhere to be the most vulnerable process where in maximum 5 meetings of around 20 hrs duration an organisation puts billions of bucks and pride at stake... Yeah by simply hiring the person who they have been interviewing for that period and role and looking at the Jargons and Jig saws he has used with his toungue and resume. Way Way Way Way... thats not all.... he/she is also been made responsible of parenting the Team and nurture or grow the organisational culture. So here are things that I feel should be done / taken into consideration while trying to find the right guy... believe me You will still not find the perfect match ;)

1. Never ever take an instant decission
Even if you like him/her as you would have liked Angeline Jolie in the wildest of your dream, just go back and think:
1. How many Guys did you interview for this position
2. What was the Best thing someone else had that he/she doesnt... Yes..dont find what Best he/she has because he/she really has it.. try to find what he/she doesnt have and someone had the best of it...
3. Do you know why you are present to interview him/her?
4. Do you or the panel has all skills required to judge the person's abilities?

I remember last when Atul (name changed) was hired to play a role as a System Administrator only within a week to realise that he was not the right choice first to play that role and second that he did not fit in the organisational culture. So what bought him into the organisation in first place? It was later realised that the guys who interviewed him were impressed by his Technical skills and effectiveness and made a quick offer.

2. Do they want to change?
Be it a Junior or a Senior see if they look for changing the ways thing work... meaning do they like bringing in a change? and if they adopt to changes easily... Someone who is not easily accepting change can be harmful in the short run and a demolisher in the long. Another thing to look for is Change doesnt mean Re-write... I remember asking a candidate about what he will do if he comes to know that the code/Architecture he is going to work on is blunderously written (Thanks to the Diminishing Quality) and answer was I will change everything , re-write the whole architecture again... well well well My friend if someone wants to change everything he is going to screw you, your budget and your vision.. someone who wants to move step by step with a slow and steady pace and bring the change is something you should look for.

3. Never find something that you miss in the Team
Till sometime back I was a tradional follower of
1. Retrospectives Find it
2. Action fix it
3. Retrospectives Find it
4. Action fix it

Till I realised that I am screwing my efforts in finding to fix them... Find a person that is similar to what your Team members are .... this can be used to improve more.

4. Decissive
How quick he reacts and makes decissions... if he is a very quick decission maker then he definately suits..... Not your Team but been a Customer Support Executive who can handle Customer Grievences very fast.... throw 5 problems at him and see how he answers or reacts....
Once I asked a guy what he will do if his Girl friend leaves him today.. just to stress his decissive skills ... and he responded he will find a New one.... Wow what a power of decission making it is... but it doesnt suit everywhere.... Someone who takes time to understand the question and then respond taking time to come up with an honest and down to earth answer is something that you should look for.... If you dont understand what it means .. throw this problem at Savio and see how he responds...

5. Is he inquisitive enough
All through my career I have met only few people who I can count on fingers really are inquisitive enough in the interviews itself... people who are not inquisitive do not really have passion towards things that come to them... if they are inquisitive they will find out.... make sure they are practically inquisitive not behavorioul inquisitive.... practical ones will think about tangible growths... behavirioul can route your Team to a Emotional Turbulence.

6. Agreements
Throw disagreements towards their answers and see if they make their point of view... One thing you would not want I am sure in your Team is a Palace full of praising demoens.... one who Nod as you do.... and have a "Boss is always right" attitude. If you have read Times Of India on Tuesday 14th August you would understand why...

7. Do they ignite anything in you?
2 Years ago in an interview I met a gentlemen who ignited a thought that helps me until now... How he said it was funny and a bit controversial too... When Asked by the panel on what you would do to achieve success in any form.... His answer was :
Every thing that President Bush would do to achieve it and everything that "The Most Wanted" Man could not to make it happen... I took the positive combination of both parts of his answer leaving the aggression behind. Its very necessary that a person ignites something in you... if he cant then he is just one more in the row..

8. Do they wait for Authorities to take Responsibilities?
Lot of guys during the interviews talk about what they could not do with the reasons always associated with them.... which means that though they wanted to do things they did not do it due to lack of Authorities.... but remember though Reponsibilities come with authority necessarily doesnt mean authorities always.... Your responsibility towards society will not mean that you will get as many authorities as a Police Man do....try to find out someone who know how to take and follow on responsibilities without caring about authorities.

9. Can they Do what You Could?
Never find out a better replacement... just find out if he can do what you can...

10. Are they Role players or Rule Players?
Lot of guys are Rule players... meaning work as said ONLY.... see if they go beyond something... or have gone beyond...

Lastly.... try to Identify what they have in their mind in terms of 1 yr , 2 yr or a 5 yr plan.... If they are ambitious its good... if they are over ambitious it could be very crude....

While I really wnat to write more on this ... I think I will stop here to make you re-visit here to find out how else and what else you can do to judge the people.... remember most of the things you do here are what you should do.. rather than what you should expect from the person you are interviewing or judging....


Sameer Shaikh

Thursday, 16 August 2007

Steve Jobs - A Miracle or Destiny child?

It just took the first few words for me to have my goose hair.. I am sure you would too be inspired by this... I somehow found this on You Tube and thanks to Chad to make us meet Steve Jobs so what if its virtual

Wednesday, 15 August 2007

The YIKIT How to

Referring to the earlier post on the YIKIT's and to a request from Faisal on how to compel the YIKIT attitude, here are a few ways to handle and manage the YIKIT attitude:

1. Never embarass them
This should be the last thing you would want to do.. The YIKIT's attitude is just to show that they know more than anyone else, these type of people cannot hide their embarassement and would want to run away from their existing jobs and Team to avoid any more of it. The YIKIT's can be best Team players and also can have lot of knowledge and experience.

2. Throw responsibilities at them
The easiest way to be more effective with a YIKIT is to throw responsibilities at him in such a way that his experiences and knowledge is polished. A YIKIT really may or may not know things but pretend to show it.... making him realise that he doesnt know it can harm so let him polish his skills by making him work in the area he pretends to work keeping in mind that YIKIT's need virtual micromanagement.

3. Turn a YIKIT to a TIKIT or a MIKIT
Step 2 can really turn a YIKIT to Though I Knew it or even Maybe I know it which can be very effective since it will make a YIKIT to go and explore the world. YIKIT's can harm a Team if the YIKIT attitude turns to TITS meaning Thats It ;)

4. Ask Questions that you know and dont know
A YIKIT like to answer everything or show that he is a encyclopedia no matter its a Jack knowledge... I mean Jack of All King of None kinda knowledge... Another way to turn a YIKIT back to normal is throw questions that you have deep knowledge in and where you dont have any knowledge without making him realise about your knowledge in the area.

5. Avoid making statements or giving answers to YIKIT's easily
This is to make sure that the YIKIT doesnt take words from your statements and then make over stories on own, avoid responding first to make the conversations and progress better.

Remember of all the things you need to understand that:
a. YIKIT's are knowledgable
b. YIKIT's are intelligent
c. They have good skills and imagination power
d. They never want to loose
e. They Know what to talk and what not to

I am sure for a success of any Team you need all of these YIKIT's been in the Team is important the only thing to take care of is better management of YIKIT's and having a good control over them.

Saturday, 11 August 2007

Are your Best Guys in Action?

Lately reading the Technical Interview I took from Suresh and to my earlier post regarding the Diminishing Software Quality I am really really sad when I look at the way the software's are developed and manhandled afterwords... A simple question I ask to myself looking at the IT Industry boom in India is "Are the Best Guy's doing what they are Best at?" ... Surprised to listen? I myself feel NO.. The Best Programmer in a Technology within a Year wants to be Technical Lead, A Technical lead wants to be an Architect or Manager within a few months and a Manager wants to be a Delivery Head , Delivery Head to be the VP and the VP to be the CEO... Well No one really thinks beyond a CEO do they?

Looking aback I really feel that a team member who is best at coding is pushed to designing (The management Sales BUZZ WORD "GROWTH OPPORTUNITIES" sucks here), A Web Designer been asked to be a Animator because the company has got the project and they want to show him his growth prospects, A Technical lead who never thought outside beyond technology is asked to do People Management and poorly enough an illeterate (I really am talking here about everyone who are not business blooded) is asked to run an organisation.

After you have a read of this can you go,check and let me know if you think:
1. The Best Guys are doing what they used to do best and with evolving and surprising results?

2. All who are a part of your Team are there just because they are best at what they are doing?

3. Growth for them is designed in such a way that it is directly proportionate to the Aspiration and the exposure to achieve the aspiration?

4. People are not pushed to do things just to keep them within or make them run for a Mirage?

5. You are doing something you are Best at?

6. You are doing something for a long time and yet you want to do because everytime you do the same you think you have learnt more?

Huh? So many dammn questions and the answer is just one... "Diminishing Quality" So what to do about this? Lets make our Growth Planners added with a spice of an entity that tells us what we are best at, Let our employers know what we can do best for them, Let our resumes show what best we can bring to the given organisation and finally Let us take a Pledge that we will CARE ABOUT THE SOFTWARE WE DEVELOP Not for the sake of it but for a reason that can help the Software development Industry achieve the goals for what it was intended to have started...

Sameer Shaikh

P.S. Please do not take a Pledge just becuase you want to seen, Mean it.

Sunday, 5 August 2007

The Magic Pill

Tom Fosters post about the Magic Pill really impressed me the idea of 40 hrs a week on force really can make a Manager's life more easy and productive... But while I feel that the Magic Pill comes as a sorcerer's stone the diamond stone of work is always been more preffered... the stone that can kill you only when you try to swallow it...

40 hrs a week is the ideal thing to do (not anymore when the Rupee value is getting the benefit and while the outsourcing to India is no more a cheaper commodity) it is seen that not only the Managers but also the developers prefer to spend more time in office at work than anyone else... Last when I tried to swap off the office within the 8 hrs of work I felt that the passion towards work in me started dying. The easiest way to gauge the death of the passion towards work is when been on the desk and in meetings you are still drawing circles and stars on your meeting notepad.

The one of the few ways to make the Magic Pill work is:

1. Delegate responsibilities in the right hands (shere delegation doesnt work, work has to go in right hands)

2. Follow up should be like a regular visit to the doctor.

3. Work needs to be on the sticky notes

4. The Last thing to do is end of time even if its not finished... work is like a appendix the more you try to cut it the more it grows.

So what other ways you know of making the Magic Pill work?

Saturday, 4 August 2007

YUCK:- Me Know Everything????

While I was listing down some qualities of the Leader's and Managers I realised I forgot to talk about the Commodity Managers when Listing down the Commodity Leaders. One of the problems with the commodity leaders or both commodity leaders or Managers is that they pretend to know everything...

I remember while playing Card Poker games with my friends "BLUFFING" was the only way to get out and win... meaning You either pretend that you know what your contender has in his hands or you pretend that you ahve the best cards in hands... both of which at times are not true... while this technique is commonly used in games you will find the commodity players (Leaders, Managers and Mentors) posses this quality often in the professional life to pretend they are the Best.

How to Identify A YIKIT animal (Ouch I forgot to explain YIKIT is Yes I Know It )?

1. Try to quarrell on items / decissions to see how defensive they get..
2. Tell them about a thing that you know and see if they talk about it ... YIKIT's never go the way anyone has already gone...
3. YIKIT's Always begin with "YES.. I Know" , "Yes I have done it" blah blah...
4. Watch the Next Action after your talks/ emails... The next action YIKIT's will do is go and find out the answers... though they leave it half way
5. YIKIT's are always under complex... so they prefer pretending... the moment someone wants to show superiority .... he/she is the YIKIT.
6. YIKIT;s drive the topics away when they see someone knowing more... this is how it is done... "But I think...." , "Well I Guess..." , "May be I am wrong ....." and lot more...

Why to Identify a YIKIT ?
Its important to know the YIKIT's animals in a Team so that the knowledge can be shared in the right way... Lot of reasons why any type of Projects fail is they are run by YIKIT Leaders or Management. YIKIT can deny the sharing and training required for someone.. just becuase they pretend they know it...

Why Not to be a YIKIT?
Just think of myself smiling at you within my mind just because you are pretending you know something that you really dont know.... Lot of experienced guys are YIKIT Hunters... they dont need more than a stare in your eye to know if you are a YIKIT or Not... and honestly YOU DONT GET ANY BUSINESS FROM THEM IF YOU PROVE YOURSELF TO BE A YIKIT.. AND YOU WILL NEVER KNOW WHY.

Remove the YIKIT Attitude if you have any and see what difference it makes for you....

Thursday, 2 August 2007

The Have's and Want's

I was been asked by a friend to update my Have's and Wants on my Ryze Page Before I could really do it I realised its important to know about it before I update it. One of the Question or Theroam that hit me always was that people dont know what they want or rather dont know what they have.

Last I asked someone on why he wants to do strategic business development the answer I got was "Its more Money" geeez... what do you think of the answer? Then I decided to go on a rampage to ask guys on not what they want but what they have... and here is the list of answers I got:

1. I Have passion to do Project management.
2. I have urge to learn blah blha technology...
3. I have to ... oops I want to do this in my life
4. I have all the skills required to be a better Manager/Leader.
5. I have money and power
6. I have knowledge in this field
7. I have everything that I wanted :d

Eeeeeezy guys... its not the end, While for most of the answers I got it makes me feeel that we really dont know what we have.. and when we dont know what we have how we can judge what we want....

1. No wonder we have thousands of IT Aspirants everyday standing on the security check of your company with their resumes in hand..

2. No wonder we have every single engineer wanting to be an architect / manager before his 5th year of career.

3. No wonder we have people for whom success means praises and money

4. No wonder "Team" as a word is just been understood to be used as a ladder to growth not success

Anyways... success is not in listing what we dont have.... Lets blog on what you think you Have.. help me in knowing you... lets see what it comes out to be....

Saturday, 28 July 2007

Commodity Leadership

While I dont intend to discuss the Harry Potter and the Deathly hallows secrets by any chance on this blog I am forced to write about something that is a part and parcel of todays fast moving business world. One of the reason why Professor Dumbledore could not succeed to be a Master Of Death or rather be the most powerful Harry Potter character is that he was a Commodity Leader, This was revealed and discussed in the last few chapters of the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

So for the readers and the feeders of this post who will definately ask what exactly does it mean by Commodity Leader.. here is the answer for you:

1. A Leader who wants to achieve some goals or keep on achieving goals for himself is a commodity leader

2. A commodity Leader only thinks about saving ways to own success, this is revealed by the insecurity and subsequent defensive acts done.. Guess why Lord Voldermort is a commodity Leader?

3. The difference between the leader and the commodity leader is Secrets... Harry Potter never kept secrets , Dumbledore and Voldermort did, like I said its revealed by the insecurity the fear of failing or the fear of getting overtaken by another strong competitor creates this issue.

4. A commodity Leader reacts, A leader goes for it with the Team ofcourse, So when Voldermort knew about the passage of Harry from Dudseley's to the Order safe zone or to that matter the whole of the journey of Harry to the Godric's hallows all through Voldermort did was reacted, when it came to the end Harry was not afraid to go for Voldermort in the abandonned forests to fetch Voldermort. Similarly an attack on a commodity leader turns into reaction very soon some way or the other.

5. A commodity leader prefers favourisms, No wonder Dumbledore or Voldermort or to that matter Thicknesse? everyone had there own sets of reservations as far as favoursisms are considered. Dumbledore to Harry, Voldermort to Luious Malfouy Or Snape to Draco and so on... the favoured may or may not be capable.

6. A commodity leader understands critisims as complains and empowerment as delegation

7. A commodity leader is selfish and the play is for glory..

8. Praises and curses matter to the commodity leaders, they cant sustain curses and they can't stay without praises which makes a world difficult for them for long since praises comes with curses.

9. Commodity leaders find wrong in anything that is not them, While The Elder Wand was a key to success did Voldermort really trust Snape? Or Did Dumbledore trust anyone else for the Magical limits ever?

While the commodity leader continues to be a leader and tries to enchant the growth of the organisations one of the cause of failures of early startups is commodity leadership. The ways to get out of commodity leadership is essential but while we think about the ways to thin about practical leadership lets decide on what House of leadership we would like to go? Choose the house than letting others choose whether you want to be a leader or not... let the magical wand choose what type of leader you are...

Wednesday, 25 July 2007

Sharepoint Goes RSS

While I was really thinking how beneficial it would be to get RSS Feeds for the collaboration tools.. the 1 step ahead Sharepoint has already declared it with newsgator... Darn sounds like Sharepoint is moving towards the semantic world.. More to Read on

Tuesday, 24 July 2007


"When there's a gap between someone doing a job and doing the right thing, then management has failed"

Now I don't remember which Article or Blog I read this and unfortunately not able to find the exact place even after doing so many searches, I am actually forced to link this to the Harry Potter book specially because of the incidences happening over there... BTW This post was written when I was in the Godric's Hollow where Harry has just survived the Deathly attack.I am having a feel that its the Voldermort's mismanagement that is killing him. Be it not managing Snape to kill Dumbledore or be it not getting hold of the Undesirable one while leaving the dudesley's. Anyway forget it, coming back to the Fun. The root cause of failures in management are linked to doing wrong things at right times.Yes say for example "Taking your kid out in rain when he has just come out of cough and cold" Or "Having a quarrell with your wife when she is in a real bad mood" too many more things really, yeah wrong things at right times....

So while we think that its a managements failure when the right things are not done and the jobs are just done as a Project Manager certain things really can be credited on the path to "Why My Software Projects Fail". Lately while realising and analysing the follies and faults a Project Manager can do while reacting to situations can definately lead to the worst. Through a Project Managers career comes occasions like :
1. Biz critical situation needs to be responded by a Software support.
2. Risks need to be managed by playing with resources (doesnt only include Man Power).
3. Values need to be staken at the cost of situations...
more of course that you wont like me to write here.... under these situations the Best Manager's takes a call that can suffice and satisfy the needs and what plays a major role here is the time taken between the agreement on decission and actual implementation. If you are a cricket fan and had watched the 2nd day play of cricket Test Match between Englad and India you will agree Vaughan's decission to let Panesar continue a longer spell of bowling thinking that his spin will bowl out India short;) Unfortunate the decission was wrong. I have seen Managers who want to do everything in one shot right from decission to implementation and 11 out of 10 times it results into failures (however there is NO MANAGER IN THE WORLD WHO SAYS I DID THIS WRONG) If you dont believe this ask your Manager why a person who was fired recently becuase he been not productive or having other issues was HIRED at all? Well the answer wont be My choice was wrong it will be "He was better now he changed" so anyways.. taking decissions hastily is a art of Mis Management that can kill success... And I believe it is "JUST DOING THE JOB"

Yet another place to measure how it can affect in doing the right thing or just doing the JOB. A Father of an Indian girl's decission to hurriedly (without proper investigations or checks) of the groom she is marrying can result in disaster of a spoiled marriage, while if the fixing of marriage and the actual marriage takes long its possible that you might find the defects of the groom/bride way in time... definately leading to a find of successful marriage.

So next time you are to make a decission just dont make it "IT WILL BE DOING YOUR JOB" take time and then implement no matter it gets late it will be a right thing ;)

Friday, 6 July 2007

Move To Thrash

A Few weeks ago we developed this feature for one of our key Customers on a key Project... what a thing it would be I realised if I get this Button in the Project Management to:

1. Thrash the Communication problems
2. Thrash the delays in the deadlines
3. Thrash the bugs in the system to never restore
4. Thrash the hurdles in the way of a successful growing product
5. Thrash the banners that do not motivate anyone from getting motivated
6. Thrash the fear so as to enable everyone to grow equally
7. Thrash barriers that cause project delays and confusion.

and last but not least solemnly thrash the erosion of quality code.

This is just to make the challenges of Project Management look a bit easier.

Serial Entrepreneurs?

Meeting with Mark Organ a few weeks ago in Pune was a kickoff to think the Serial way.. which honestly provoked me to think about the Buzz Kings and the internet Millionaires... So what is the reason I am writing this post here?

Well Project Management or to that matter any sort of Management is all about making things better than SEX, and Yes Making Money definately is better than SEX.. Hope yall agree..

When Mark termed the word Serial entrepreneur it honestly reminded me of Aaron Cohen and going a bit more insight I really see the way the serial entrepreneurs have bought a revolution in the internet and Media markets...

Heading backwards and coming the way forward we see
Niklas Zennstrom and Janus Friis ahh you dont know them? Well heard about Kazaa? or to that matter Skype? well the revolution is right here then.

Or you see Mark Fletcher whose ONEList and then later Bloglines IS a big success..

Seeing all this it really triggers that be Sabeer Bhatia (You should see the NanoCity Project that is his new Goal after Hotmail?) Or a YouTube you can be as successful as the internet millionaires if you have a sweet short vision of making a revolution. It doesnt take a long time to reprimind me that "TechShepherds" should not die that easy.... Should I get on the same path with a different vision and destination soon?

Damm some VC's required... anybody out there?

Wednesday, 4 July 2007

So whats the Problem?

With reference to my earlier post on Are we creating a Bug? and the strong opinion I carry about Negative Management (I am putting it sweet here so that you dont feel I am calling MIS-MANAGEMENT) In both the stories I find the biggest similarity... A WRONG APPROACH. So who decides the right approach? How to take a right approach? How to avoid creating a Bug? Or Natwar (Our Automation King) language Animator V/s Animation approach.

So the 2 things that tell me what went wrong in the earlier 2 stories are:
1. The right resource was not found..
2. The right action was never right..

think the right action is never instant... there maybe arguments on this but thats a personal opinion.... I have always seen hasty decision ending up into major crisis. secondly when I say the right Action is never right, I always mean that the Right Action has scope to be improved. For instance creating competition is must within an organisation and is the right action, however competition that can lead to insurgency can screw the business.

So we stand on How to be more effective?
How to take the right steps?

Monday, 2 July 2007

Creating a Bug?

I always think that Management is all about investing keeping in mind the ROI. Eventually lot of the Managers today know investing but not sure if they understand how and where to generate the ROI from... Well the reason why my post hits the blog is a recent incident that happened... Around a month ago I met a mother of a kid from my son's nursery school and while talking to her I realised that she was planning to get her child out of the school to a new one because she thinks that the school is putting too much pressure on her son and she wants her son do some painting and dancing along with swimming. Lately when I saw her again while going to drop my son to the school we had a chat that hit my mind badly.... She wanted to invest some more time so that her son learns been a bit pressured to study and manage things out...

Goshh.... Well you don't need to meet a mother to know the problem we have here... darn.. I think it sheer BAD Management well in our day to day lives as Project Managers we face similar things... things that can hurt damm hard... wana know How?

Tom is a Manager by mind, Developer by heart, QA by lungs and a Leader by Ears and ofcourse a Dictator by attitude... To be honest he is Jack of All and King of None... His Manager Harry invested time on him to create a backup, while everything went fine.. the Jack attitude took Tom to mis understand and interpret things negatively... eventually it resulted into a Over head for Harry.... the final outcome of the investment was Tom was out working for another company in the same way he started with Harry...

So whats the problem here? Lets relate the 2 stories to find whats the ROOT Problem here...

Positng Daily

Well my Wife's Astrologer told her that starting July first week theres going to be tremendous pressure on me and that I have to take some decissions before July to be safe and Happy....

I made up my mind to start doing things that can relive my pressure to the Least... So my first resolution is blogging daily... I am gonna start a series with situations that forms one of the objectives of my Blog this double quarter...

Keep an eye on this one....

Sameer Shaikh

Thomas Power in India

A Long tourney Master of the social networking is in India. Yes Thomas Power is in Mumbai, India on the 25th July 2007 for a workshop on Social Networking and More.. for those who don't know much about Thomas Power or who want to know the details of his visit can go on to:

Sameer Shaikh

Saturday, 30 June 2007

Software Outsourcing and the Diminishing Quality

It had been almost 8 yrs now in the Industry and experience is counting... more and more....Yesterday for some reason we had a discussion on the diminishing quality of software with outsourcing.. specially when the world is slowly moving from India/China towards Ukraine and other nations and remembering my last week Meeting with Twain Harris CEO,ATC LLC on the software quality they got out of the projects from the Chinese Software development Ally... One thing we can smell coming to us in future is surely LESS WORK.

Why the Quality is going down is a bigger question which I would leave the experts to answer while I really focus on writing some aspects I feel is killing the trust in outsourcing...

1. Transparency :- I remember when I was tied up with a front runner in the Hospitality sector while been with TechShepherds Software Solutions in 2004 I realised that when the Customer offered the firm to be the Development Partner for their Major Integration projects, It was lack of transparency that caused several of one problems which finally resulted in a breakdown of relationship. The way demands are rising today it is expected that a Software portal is developed in weeks time and goes running in production within coughing periods... Now it is easier to do that.. but not necessarily in the correct way... I was talking to a developer working on a KEY collaboration tool and unfortunately my first feel was he did not understand why he was building the software... How will this help the Company that is looking to make this collaboration tool be one of the front runners in today's collaboration Market? secondly I realised that the Company wanting to build the product and the Team that was developing the product met only once a few weeks to KNOW whats the Status.

This was for sure a killer since there was no transparency in both the sides... each side should have made things more visible.. be it development efforts, needs, objectives or time lines and finances.... Lack of this transparency is the root cause of a NO TRUST zone. No wonder the Company will surely choose to go away with this development partner sooner or later...

2. Honesty: When I asked Mike (Twain H. as he is popularly known) why he wants to shut out the Chinese Operations his answer was it is not working due to finances and a NOT FIT Team.. honestly I think No one outsourcing is so honest to take that call... How Many Managers have you seen that say that "The Development Team we chose was wrong?" Or " The Team we work with is not of the required Quality?" well I guess none... No one here Outsourcing company or company taking the deal commits on this. Another Big issue to the broken trust is the Effective Team in Action and the way Service Industry is charging... Since there is lack of transparency in the development effort the Customer firm never knows what type of Team and who they are working with? as a result a Development resource of very High Grade is presented to the Customer company while a development resource coming out of college really is working over it... Faking the Orgasms sometimes are better I guess not this...

While it is important to enroute the Knowledge of the Business Model in the development Team who will work on your Business critical product it is also important that enough Transparency is created within....

Though I feel that it wont be enough to write everything here.... I will split up my experiences on the outsourcing problems as a Project Manager in the later blogs...

Sameer Shaikh

Wednesday, 27 June 2007

Of Objective , Goals and Value

This Project will change your career path
This opportunity cannot be missed out
This will change your life
This will be remembered by You as a revolution in your life...

Well Well well many more buzzwords and Jargon's. Honestly I feel that this is how the current Manager Trend has been selling its products and I am left no away from it.... though I am rarely frequent in making such promises or Hives I feel that this is something that has been always been used as a lethal Weapon to motivate the performers(Under Or Over).

While I am still in process to think how We should be presenting the Objectives and Goals for the Project, release or Team... I got a setback when I think is it really Selling or Marketing your Offerings to the Software Development Team?

So I am sure you have a question whats the setback.... So here it is...

1. Value:- I personally think that things are not cared about if they don't have a Value... for example I remember we talking about motivation in my previous posts, We talking about Empowering in the earlier posts, We talking about creating a High performance Team.. all of this is possible only if there is a Value attached to what we do... To Motivate it needs to be Knowledge , Monetary Benefits or lot of other things, To Empower we need to enhance and train, To create a High performance Team the Team needs to know what, How , When and where and so many other things.... All of these things happen only if a Value is associated with what you want to do.... So the question arises Why a Value needs to be associated?

I remember I been a part of the cricket Team that used to play cricket tournaments on tennis ball... while been a part of it I realised that we as a Team were not much interested in winning when there was no prize money or bet on the game... Of course it was a Value attached.
I remember a Team Member calling on me to say that I don't want to be a part of a particular project Team since he/she thinks that he/she cannot learn things or evolve in the given project... of course there is a value associated with what anyone wants to do.... So many other examples and reasons of how Important a value is for anything you do....

So the question arises why is this a setback to me and my thinking now?
Well I realise that sometimes we don't create a value but we just try to market and hype it or sell what we don't really have or want someone to buy something that we cannot sell.... something that shouldn't be done or that doesn't last for long... No wonder faulty promises and organisational exit times appraisals and counter offers don't last long...

A product doesn't sell if the customer doesn't see the value
A Developer doesn't want to be a part of the product that doesn't adds value to him
A Leader finds a pathway if he thinks there are roadblocks ahead.. and so many other things....

It is at most important to Create a Value for something you want to do....

2. Share It? : Its not enough to create a value to sell it, You need a Team to create it.. A Team that is going to be a part of it altogether... for example.... I am sure if the prize money we used to win/loose on the cricket games was not shared the interest would have lowered down... disappointments would have been caused easily and failure was the next door. Creating a value is as must as creating it with the Team that will be a part of achieving it... the Objectives and Goals of a project can only be achieved by a Project Team if the Team creates the Objectives and Values for it... and are not defined by someone else...

So the question arises why is this a setback to me and my thinking now?
Well I feel the needs, Goals and Objectives should be defined by a Team who will be part of the runners to achieve it.... When Talking to the SWAT Team today I realised that their are several Objectives that are not even thought about and Yes this is the time to get them in and work towards them... what a Team it will be where everyone knows what they have to work on and for. So the setback is the vision has to be shared, the goals have to be worked upon and priorities need to be re-defined....

3. Celebrate : In my earlier posts about celebrate the smallest success I mentioned that inventing something , developing something or finishing some tasks is just not the whole thing... It is important that we celebrate each of those... A Value can be predominant only if it is celebrated and appreciated everytime... Every effort towards the value acquisition should be appreciated and celebrated only then the goals are achieved...

Do we celebrate what we achieve?
Do we know what we achieve?

More on and over... let me rethink How to best sell myself and how best to Empower the Team to let do the above 3 key elements....

Sameer Shaikh

Wednesday, 20 June 2007

Revise yourself

lately I realised that it had been a few months since I have revised myself... As a Manager I feel it is atmost important to keep on revising to avoid lapses and backsteps. A few things I could capture why I need a revision are:

1. Missing Objectives
2. Confused Deliverables
3. Untimed schedules
4. Rigid Views
5. Non passioned approach
6. vertical limits

What my next version would include will make sure that I
1. Know what I have to achieve
2. Know where I have to Go
3. Know what I have to do
4. Know what things come under my care
5. Identify and work towards what is the Goal
a. Personal
b. Organisational
c. Professional
d. Social
6. Last not the least When and How I have to do the above 5....

Do you think its the time for you to revise yourself ? If not then I think Yes it is... well let me mould my list and you mould yours ... and as a Thread I would like to update you what my tomorrows morning will bring for me.

Wednesday, 13 June 2007

About Me

I finally get to write something about me.. About me and here...

For those who have hit the page as they are just curious to know about me... I somehow graduated, Accidentally ended up as a Project Manager, loved the profession, and enjoy the ups and downs of it. I love the puter but not more than the passion that drives me to become a Film maker ... if not now some years down the line. I enjoy internet as mush as you do, I enjoy reading and some sports... that my 10 inch belly out doesnt allow me...

I plan to join politics by year 2010 and want to work towards building a corruption free society. I am a work alcoholic and prefer working hard than smart. I am also a movie lover and believe it or not from District 9 to Ramu ke Sholay.. I watch every single movie that hits the cinema halls.

I look cute, but dont go by looks they are decieiving and the photo I put on my networks is usually the one when I looked Cute....If thats not enough for you... have a more of me...

Saturday, 9 June 2007

Goals and Objectives of the Blog

Objectives of the blog

When I started the blog, It was meant for sharing the day to day activities that affect right the professional part of me. I was never too organized to have a separate blog for person things and a separate one for activities that I like about and are work related. The core objective of this blog is to share with you the experience I earn every day, Share with you what I have learnt so far.. and share views.

Another reason to keep this blog alive with little or more phases of Coma is, that I dont want to disappoint my former boss Kari who also inspired me to get into the headache of managing this blog ;) Boss I am joking.

Over the years I have revised my blog to keep it separated from what I do on personal levels.. but if you find my family photos here, dont mind... I am applying managing tricks at home :P

A few Goals for me for Year 2009

  • 100 Quality posts

  • 10 Guest Posts

  • 1 comment / post

  • 10$ from Adsense

  • 5 Blogs on Roll

  • Get listed on 5 Rolls

  • Categorize posts

  • Review every Month

  • Write About Management and Styles

Thursday, 7 June 2007

Want to be Productive? Sleep in the Office, Fill in the Toilets.....

OK so this is no funny thing...
Have you seen people dozing off in the meetings?
Have you seen people sinking in their desks at work?
Have you seen people daydreaming?

If you see people doing these ... make a point that they can be more productive then the ones who are UP, STRAIGHT and AWAKE all day.....

lately I heard from my Behavioural mentor that a small nap in the office helps him freshen up his mind and get ready for another 9 AM in the office though it is 4:30 PM and you are just about to leave the work.... I went back to those old days when I was working in the night shifts around 11 PM - 9 AM and had to take a 1 hour break every time between 3-4... those breaks were mostly used by me for taking those healthy naps that allowed me to be fresh and work hard for the rest of the day....

I thought it is important to tell how you can be more productive with the help of these naps... We here in India are not used to the 9-5 work and 10-6 bed culture.. meaning we are late to sleep and late to rise, this leads us to have not more than a few hours of sleep which is a bit less than what the human body requires... definitely the exception is Rama who wants to be in bed at 10... So when we follow these trashy schedules we tend to be tired with our brains.... somewhere or the other this tired "feeling" hurts the productivity within you... a small NAP at this time can really help you jingle and fresh and make you feel as if you just had enough sleep and are ready for work..

Obviously since you are a intelligent human being as I assume you will ask WHY? so let me be a Doctor for a while and explain you why... Usually you feel relaxed when you are asleep(unless you are alien) which means that your brain operates a bit slow in this state... the Gods of Science call it a Alpha state... this is the state where the Yog Gurus take you and you feel relaxed in a few minutes everyday ;) Me and you call it Meditation / Yoga... The operation cycle speed at this time is around 5-14 within your brain and when you are up and awake the cycles are at 14+ meaning when you slowly get the state of 5-10 you are quite relaxed and coming back to 14 make you feel that you are all good for work.. and of course fresh...

Now I believe you are Greedy .... Greedy cause you ask How to take these Naps at work and where in the office?

So I always preferred Toilets... this is the place where you wont find anyone watching you... shut your eyes for a while and forget about everything until someone bangs the door here...(I remember so many guys doing this in my previous firms and I making fun of it) or find a meeting room where people cannot see you ;) Or Go find a recreation hall or reach your home... these Naps I am sure help support you to reach the freshness level as in the morning and let you achieve some productive work... Also make sure that these are 5-10 mins naps and not 1-2 hrs sleep... else the Bosses will be upset if they don't find you on desk or someone cannot use the toilets.. ;) In which case you will have to use this freshness to find a new Job...

Great... so have a few naps today and see if it helps you...