Thursday, March 6, 2008

INDIANOIL-weekly 'gup shup'

Why has talking become so unpopular? Talk, we are told, is a poor substitute for action. All too often talk becomes an end in itself. Yet talk is necessary precursor for action. Meetings, conferences, symposia are all necessary. Head Office of a PSU issued an order to all its state units to have weekly meetings of all HODs. The purpose was to review the functioning of each department in the presense of all other department heads to instil competitiveness. But what really happened week after week? It is Monday morning. Everyone who is someone asking every other someone---what time is the meeting? No one knows for sure. There is an air of anxiety. Announcement comes on phone from PA—meeting is at 1530, followed by a personal message to each someone. At 1530 two or three are in the conference hall. The head telephones to find if all have arrived. He too is anxious not because of the meeting agenda but because it is not the first time that there is delay. He enters the conference hall and occupies his chair. Only about 50% attendance! Intercom “silsila” to each yet- to- arrive someone begins. Silsila is given up, as the response is poor.Lunch was over between 1330 and 1400 hrs. Serious managers do not take lunch on time. It probably is one of the unwritten management principles! Back to the conference hall. By 1600 most members are seated. Minutes of the previous meeting are on the screen. First point is taken up. By now each member has in front of him a piece of well-topped pastry and a large samosa. Mouth watering, though the lunch was over just an hour and a half ago. Samosa after all is a great delicacy. The boys who serve the snacks have not had their food. Normally they have after 1600 after they clean up the places where employees have their food. You can see hunger in their eyes as they serve appetizingly topped pastry and alluring crisp brown samosa. Someone says –why pastry every time. Why not khalakhand every alternate week. Good suggestion says someone else.Meeting is on. Third point is being discussed. Meeting did complete with change of dates for action on many points. A couple of new points added.Next meeting is scheduled Monday next.

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