Wednesday, August 2, 2023

Who could not move my cheese?

 The corporate system we have created is too intricate and entrenched to simply press a 'refresh' button. From the earliest days of schooling, we instill in children a predisposition to conform to the corporate paradigm of teamwork over individual initiative. This often rewards the most assertive voices, rather than the most insightful thinkers. Remote working challenges this norm, allowing a more meritocratic and inclusive environment.

Similarly, the financial investment in Commercial Real Estate (CRE) by major financial institutes is so substantial that it has become a barrier to even considering a work-from-home culture. But we must pause to ask ourselves, 'Who will pay for the default loans of vacant office spaces?' Moreover, 'At what cost?'

Are we mortgaging the future of our children? We are consuming vast quantities of fossil fuel and precious time commuting to places of work for tasks that could just as effectively be performed from home. All this, in the name of collaboration, which, with the advent of modern digital technology, is becoming increasingly accessible and efficient remotely.

Imagine a future where people travel for hours, only to log into a metaverse and meet colleagues from around the world. It's a future tinged with irony, but one that also hints at the potential absurdity of our current path. A path that, if continued, threatens to consume resources needlessly, contributing to the significant climate challenges we face.

The madness of unnecessary travel and over-reliance on physical office space must be examined in the context of a changing world. A world where digital collaboration is not only possible but often preferable. A world where the environmental implications of our choices today will shape the lives of future generations.

It's time for a critical reassessment of our corporate culture, a culture that should evolve to reflect our technological capabilities and our moral responsibilities. The stakes are high, but the rewards are equally significant. Embracing remote work, rethinking our investments, and fostering a system that values the quality of ideas over the volume of voices can not only enhance our present work culture but also protect the world our children will inherit. It's a future worth fighting for, and the time to act is now."

Tuesday, December 13, 2022

The next chapter

If you get a seat on a rocket ship, don't bother about which seat is it, but just grab it! I read this long back, but applied it some time back when I got an opportunity to be part of the market entry team of IKEA, as they were stepping foot in India. And boy, what a learning it was! Never a dull day and the sweat, tears, blood which are seen culminating on the final D Day as the 1st store in Hyderabad was opened to the customers was all worth it. Things moved on in my career as I got a chance to then work with some really amazing retail brands across both Indian and the North American markets and apply my retail expertise. Well this journey in retail was never planned but it was worth taking. 

I also progressed personally, as I was fortunate to experience the beginning of parenthood along the way. Juggling work and being a mommy made me realise that this is what I ever wanted, my ideal adult life always visioned. But then came a catch! It started becoming comfortable :) And some where deep down I knew I need to look for next challenge and wriggle out of that comfort zone. 

I found a 2 months long course to do that and crazy it was. It however taught me how i could get further out of the 24 hours of time and still stimulate myself both intellectually as well as make the most of the growing moments of my little one. I experimented too. And then was the time to bid a good bye to retail and operations. And today, here I am looking ahead towards this new journey which I look forward to, starting the next week!

Sunday, May 29, 2022


Flashback: Seems like it was only a few days back, when blogs were a newbies. In a world sans the social network, or mobile apps, i would happily spend hours, sitting in the middle of no where (aka my engineering days) browsing through the then old internet and going through blogs. And i had some favorites which i resonated with and some which i looked upto. One of them blogged about their kid (aka some form of the present day social media :P) And i always imagined to blog till then (the closest i ever had imagining of an offspring, till i actually had one!)

So here I am. New wine, in a new bottle and not just the galaxian i started with but parent to this adorable baby, and now toddler, who helped me discover this me. This new person who had rediscovered her long lost singing voice back, from lullaby to limericks, for this little human. This new me has also discovered tons of love, energy, patience, resilience, multitasking, and what not, every single day, and moment. To live life as one moment at a time, to plan it to the seconds (yes the seconds ticker in my watch is now super useful), to hack like never before. To the whole new world!

Thursday, November 5, 2020

Personal leadership brand

Whether it is Elon Musk launching his new rocket, Baba Ramdev giving a stiff competition to FMCG majors of the country, or an Indian GenZ social media influencer, Ankita Chawla landing a coveted consultancy job purely through her Instagram resume; personal branding is more relevant now than ever in this flood of digital information, remote connections, and hyper competitiveness. 

Every individual brings in her own unique experiences and skills from different walks of life which shape them throughout - be it their personality, their leadership style, or the way to tackle a difficult situation. It is said that your brand is what people say about you when you’re not in the room. How you use this personal branding to create and deliver a unique value to an organization, goes a long way in your digital footprint and inspiring others as well as your own self!
Being an ambivert, I have thought many a times about brand building and how its innate nature seems to be self-advertising. However, on deeper introspection, I have found that it is not about being narcissistic but rather bringing a high level of self-awareness, about what defines you. 
The differentiation that you bring to the table, when channeled to achieve a defined purpose is the foremost founding pillar to building your brand identity. The way you present your niche, personalize it and present it to your audience, then builds your own brand (refer infographic)

For instance, being a creative thinker can be your core strength. When you share your ideas with others, through your chosen medium of narration like a LinkedIn article, a Youtube channel, or a blog, that can become the first moment of truth for others to discover you, even before they meet you in person. This is just an example, and your own introspection can help you find a similar unique combination towards developing and representing your personal style.

It has also become very important to build your personal brand at work and distinguish your unique identity from the others to enable yourself in helping the organization. In the current climate where we are in a level playing field working across geographies yet equally connected over digital channels, it has become paramount to drive towards our common goals in a more synergistic fashion

The trick being, staying true to it and eventually influencing others. This form of an alignment leads to a strong sense of collective vision, thereby driving efficiency as well as productivity in the work that we do. Thus, I feel that each of us need to define our personal brands and go through the transformation cycle that follows.