Sunday Story : Mirage to Miracles

It was appraisal time and Anaya was really excited and looking forward to having an interaction with her supervisor. It's been around 5 years in the role, most of her peers had already been promoted to band C; however in spite of her accomplishments as a supervisor, innovation in analytics etc she, seemed to lag behind for some strange reason. As per self assessment scores she was green on all parameters. Even her one on one interactions on goals, evaluations etc had gone well in the last 6 months. Her dedication and promptness in addressing client issues was very well appreciated by clients. This time she was confident that she will not only get an excellent rating, she would also get her long awaited promotion. After completing her staff meeting and also the client calls she called out to her team, to have an early lunch, 'lets go out and celebrate over lunch today; past one week has been crazy for all of us, dealing with all kinds of escalation calls !!" The team had put in fantastic efforts in solving some major technical glitches, that the client has been facing.

Anaya took great pride in accomplishing her responsibilities at work, her life always revolved around her work, nothing else mattered to her more than ensuring that she exceeded the client expectations. Though, Anaya put in long hours at work, with consistent performance and dedication, flawless track record; she felt undervalued at times by her immediate manager...On retrospection it seemed like her boss avoided any opportunity to facilitate her growth. She in fact pushed her marriage proposals aside, as she wanted to first accomplish herself as a successful professional before she got married and settled down. She had seen many who were forced to quit their careers post marriage. Thus after her engineering and MBA from IIM, she had decided to focus herself only on her full-time career path. Sometimes when she looks at herself her dark circles around her eyes, sunken cheeks and rollercoaster schedule, made her feel that was this career really worth it...

That afternoon as she was sitting at her desk working on her team appraisal she thought to herself, ''life should be more than just evaluations!'' Can there be any other way of assessment, other than carrot and stick of promotion or showing folks down... Whoever joins corporate has this need to grow into a team leader -manager and then subsequent designations...and life gets entangled in constant question...'Ám I better than...''Anya's father is a farmer and the family had really put in all their earnings, to see her in this corporate position she is in today...She is from the village of Enadur in Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu. Sometimes she feels... is our worth more than -CHEAPER -BETTER -FASTER intellectual power availability, because of which the software industry has setup the Silicon Valley in Bangalore India; which once used to be the garden city & a pensioners' paradise! In all this introspection she had a ''WHAT IF' moment...What if she quit and supported her father's farming efforts and took to the family tradition. After all true India is in the villages... and if she could use her education and innovative software and management intellect there for better outcomes in the village ...can she join PM's Atmanirbhar clan...and build a new future of India with superior agricultural force, rather than pride on being cheap labour for the capitalist forces who outsource to leverage our sweat and blood!! '' Yes I want to QUIT and join my father in farming!!!'' she declared to herself.

Her introspection was interrupted by one of her colleagues, who called out, ''Super Boss has summoned you''. Super boss was none other than her boss's boss Business Head for Artificial Intelligence vertical Dr. Natarajan! Anaya was startled, as her appraisal meeting with Shaun was around same time at 4pm! She hurriedly started towards the pyramid building where his office was. She was drenched in sweat by the time she reached his office. Dr. Natarajan was handsome gentleman, 6 feet tall, salt and pepper hair, whitish complexion and always wore a welcoming smile! However today, he greeted Anaya with a worried look, stating, 'Shaun has met with an accident while coming to work, thus he has been rushed to hospital, could you please reach Manipal Hospital and check if all is well.''Anaya was speechless and thought to herself that, it's great that the promotion has not happened at least that can be her excuse to quit and go to the village and start a new journey, before she is too old!! She confirmed to Dr. Natarajan that all will be fine and she will immediately head to the hospital. As she was about to leave his office, Dr. Natarajan very casually handed her a white envelop, and said, 'Anaya thanks for the great work you have put in, its an honour to have you in the team, this is your promotion letter; I was supposed to give it to you along with Shaun...''. Anaya was wondering what's the message that God is trying to give through this new decision that has been delivered to her!!! She thought to herself, 'What do I do now?'

Story to be continued...

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