Lateral Views : How robust/efficient is your “Switch System”?

My calling bell conked off the other day. The electrician told me it got fused and asked me to buy a new set including the switch. My lease was expiring in couple of weeks, so I was a bit reluctant in shelling out few extra bucks for a new switch. I told him I’ll get the new set but continue with the old switch. He told me the reason for the bell getting fused was because of the switch; it would not recoil back after pressing and hence would continue to hit the bell which fused the circut. This means if I continue with the old switch, then I might have to do few more replacement in those two weeks…I finally shell out those few extra bucks. I’ve never given so much of thought on a switch than that day. So much of the switch thought, but it seems that was just the beginning…

There is a post-lunch ritual in my workplace, which is a round or couple of slow strolls around the office edifice. In one such event, a colleague and I were generally chatting on random stuffs, one of which was the DNA required to do well in corporate world, we were comparing different people, the different qualities, bla bla bla… I subconsciously fumbled on the word “SWITCH” again, though in a different context. The GYAN was that if you are to do well in corporate world, you ought to have a good, well-oiled and robust SWITCH SYSTEM…HUH???

 Just visualize this:

On a Friday morning, you’re boss asked you to come to his/her cabin for some volley of fire …ten minutes down you are back in your seat with colleagues walking up and down passing pleasantry and flaunting on their achievements, new assignments or the new gadget they’ve just bought, so they deserve at least a (dry) smile …then you just get a call from this mystery person whom you are pursuing for the last one year and he/she has just called for a weekend out…Before those smiles ended you just saw a stinker from other department on some escalations for MIS, for which you have already instructed your juniors couple of days back and his/her only job was to forward the mail, which he/she obviously forgot…Before your head stops to spin you’ve just realized that the business head has personally chosen you to crack those 65536*256 cells of excel file and wants it in the next hour…Hell of day huh?   

Could be a bit of exaggeration…But I’m sure you would relate to an extend. And the fact is many of our working days actually sea saws on a continuous basis in some similar sense like in the above. This would be more typical if you are in a front-end role, say customer/client facing, partner facing and management facing or for that matter facing any animate object with whom you have to get some business dealings.

Irrespective of how efficiently meritocracy or performance orientation the organization follows, when it comes to performance ratings/appraisals, it is decided by someone or group of people based on their interpretation of how good you achieved your targets, how you fare vis-à-vis your peers, the potential you have, etc. In most of the comparison, even on numerical parameters it’s never an “apple to apple” comparison, so you can safely assume that on the softer parameters it is their total discretion. 

And we all very well know that when it comes to human judgment, there is always an element of personal bias…Bias is human and fairness is divine. Hence, to do well, it is very important to angle that biasness of the one who is judging towards you then on the other side. So what does this means? 

It means you have to be an obedient/meek follower, who can step up-step down your momentum/moods/reactions based on the expectations of those seniors. If you are to manage a good impression from seniors, you just cannot afford to wear your mood/emotions straight up your face or you just cannot keep on changing your facial expression based on the object that just hits you. You have to have a very efficient switch system wherein you should be able to coordinate or for that matter telepathy with their expectations and display what they wanted, when they wanted and where they wanted. 

But the sad part is you are not true to yourself…Your body system no longer reacts on the basis on the natural self, but through external stimuli (seniors expectation), which is artificially injected by that well oiled/robust switch board of yours…Just another random Lateral Views!!!



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