Saturday, April 01, 2006

Chairman for a Day

It was that time of the year. The autumn of our middle ages, where we stare at the tarot leaves of all hues, strewn on the ground and hope that with spring comes a gentle, calm, soothing breeze. A time where our past gives direction to our future. For some it is a time to strengthen alliances, a time to kill a mocking bird, a time to prepare resumes. For others its a time to favour the brave, a time for self reflection and a little bit of soul searching.

Well I filled my self appraisal form, where you are expected to critically analyse yourself. You look back at the past year and jot down the things that you did right but more importantly you jot down and think about the things you messed up. So as you must have guessed mine is a long list... of all my messups... and the list is longer in my head. And its not just the things that we did and messed up, but more importantly the things that we didn't do in the first place. Now now, we can't be crucified for something we didn't do, can we!!! But then again we think better of ourselves or atleast we would like to. And there are those times when we come up with this concoction of unfortunate events that paint an azure picture of a sweet child with a halo... hell's angel. I mean all of us think that we deserve to get that big fat juicy hike, that we have grown a year older and so we must be wiser... hmmmm. With all our wisdom to back us, what if we were made chairman of the company for a day, how would we perform. Well a lucky few are given that chance :-)

A few weeks back a few of us were given the opportunity to be the chairman for a day. We had been allocated funds to get new chairs for the company. Shankar picked up three ppl randomly from the populace. Sridhar (the architect), Anurag (a sales guys) and moi. We went to this dealer and appraised him of our noble intentions. We tried out all chairs, in all positions. The 'squat' position, the 'typing the keyboard' position, the 'relaxed and appear to be thinking of the next big thing' position, the 'sleeping' position, which usually follows the previous position :-) We could actually write a bestseller on chair positions!!!! We checked for adjustable height, degree of tilt of the back rest, degree of tilt for the base (where we rest our base), height for arm rests etc. We all played our role to perfection and did what was required for the job. Now wasn't that easy, being a chairman and stuff.

We were taking quite a bit of time so Sridhar thought it appropriate to inform the dealer of our thought process. He told him, "Although we are just a little bit over 50 in our current office, everyone would like to have a say in the chairs we choose. It might not make business sense to you, but if possible we would request you to get some chairs we shortlist to our office so that ppl can sit/feel and vote for chairs. Maybe also if you could give a short presentation on the features it would be great. You see most ppl would have joined this place cause they felt that their vote/voice/work/position would count. We would like everyone to be comfortable in their positions, even if its their chair position. We would like them to have that feeling of 'my voice counts' when we choose chairs too." The dealer looked at us for some time and then smiled and so we began to shortlist certain chairs. We all liked this particular chair which was so comfy and cosy and nice.... aaaahhhhh.... soooo nice..... Then Shankar told us about our budget, the nightmare that awoke me from my slumber. The cost of that chair was twice our budget... noooooo... sob sob...

Then random thoughts started to pound our brains, we were vulnerable, like kids that just wanted to have that voluptuous ice-cream. Maybe if we brought this chair for the showdown and people looked really happy in it, upper management would agree to push the budget a bit. Or maybe we could take it, make ppl sit on it and then give a demonic laugh and tell them that they can't have it. Or maybe we could get a few of these chairs and give them to the best performers for the month. We then decided that we need not soak peoples hearts in wine by showing them this chair, so we informed the dealer not to bring it. On our way back we continued with our board meeting and discussed about various other scenarios and then I came up with another one to make ppl feel that they have made a choice. Maybe we should take some of the chairs we rejected for the showdown. I mean make ppl sit on those ones first and then sit on other better ones which are within our budget. So that way they will choose the best one from amongst the one (not ones) we have already chosen and then they will feel that their voice counts. The air resonated with demonic laughter. It was a joke, but the genesis of that thought lay somewhere in the deep recesses of my mind... I mean I just hope it was a joke. As I said I was given the opportunity to be the chairman for a day.

7 comments:

raoul said...

if only u had written this on sunday, i wud then have claimed that the effect of yesterday's play had rubbed off on you. alas, u wrote this post before u even watched the play. anywyas,,nice humour.

Alistair D'souza said...

yeah.. wrote this before the play... but the sunday play did have its effects on me and it wasn't just the humour :-)

anyways the post was not just mean't to be humorous... a tad bit of humour always makes better reading.

orchid said...

so...how did pple feel about ti!!...i guess...All pple have had their say on chair..under ur chairmanship..:D

Alistair D'souza said...

well a few chairs were brought to our office which are being tried out for a couple of days. The chairs are being circulated amongst ppl, who use it for sometime and then give their feedback.

orchid said...

okk...wat about the super chair!!! :P

Alistair D'souza said...

well we didn't get the superchair... but have asked them to modify another chair with certain features we like... they allow you to mix features...

Etchen said...

He, he, he!