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Archive for the ‘About Me’ Category

The new year starts with uncertainty if not depressing. The company I work for has announced involuntary attrition which means that non-performing employees would be asked to leave immediately.

However it seems that the company is targeting high salaried employee rather than performance. Again this is as per the various news and rumors floating around. The company has not defined any criteria of the lay-offs publicly . This is generating more anxiety and a feeling of uncertain future in the mind of the employees.

I will not comment on the company policy, I guess any company has to take a decision based on what the market and shareholders expectations. After all business defines success on the return of Investment. It cannot be justified or debated upon or rather I wouldn’t want to.

But then the new years starts with a negative feeling and that may harm the company in the long run. Again I am no expert in corporate affairs and its my personal thoughts but an exercise like that where the company targets senior executives who have given 5-20 years to the company might be a tougher on the executive who has to look for a job at that age.

In any job once you start moving up the ladder, the stress and responsibilities increases. There is no fix office timing and personal and family time is what you get in between your work.

The ongoing layoff exercise is shrouded in secrecy and with no concrete information coming from the company, it leads to lots of rumors and a negative image of the company leadership. I guess the company was ready for that too.

Those who leave or made to leave will definitely have a tough time but those who remain will be worse. A sword of unexpected doom will always hang on the employees head. What it will do to their performance and their morale will certainly not be a positive one.

Every employee will be looking at jumping ships at any available opportunity. Employees have lots of expectations and ideas about how a project or company should run. The position or reality at the top is not as per employee thinking.

As for now today, I am not in the list but it does not mean I will not be. The last 3-4 years, I have done well in terms of work but then with no clear criteria, the future always hangs by a thread.

If not this year then next year. The company performance is all about profit and optimizing cost. So either I cry over it or take it in the stride. I need to upgrade myself. Get the borrowed time I have to make myself more relevant in the industry.

There is a feeling of insecurity and only option is to face it. With a family to care off, its their future also that makes me more worried

The feeling of unemployment is scary even if I look brave. I don’t know the people who actually lost thier jobs must be feeling.

Its a scary world out there.

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Dear Amu!

Welcome to my world!

Wait! I already said that long back!

So let me rephrase it. Welcome to a part of my world which you had not known. Before marriage, I thought of telling you about Full2 Faltu but then what would I talk when most of the things are written here.

Yes! I have told you a lot that is written here but I have told you more which is not written here. So reading this may not be much new to you already known knowledge about me.

But still there was a plan to introduce you to the blog or whatever is left of it as I write less frequently.

So go ahead, read it! Maybe enjoy it too!

Its not a birthday gift but just something I want you to know!

Welcome to the world of Full2 Faltu

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Its the time of the year again when I thank everybody who visits this blog. The blot stats finally reached 5 Lakh visitors today. It took more than usual to reach this milestone. The reasons have been reduced visitors per day. Also I have become less frequent in updating the blog.

Anyways, slow but still strong, I would like to thank all readers who still frequent and comment here. I have to admit that the blog stats does encourage me to keep writing, even though its crap many times.

Time to show off  and the usual stats.

Total Number of post :  653 (including the current one)

Guest Posts :   26

Forwarded Emails Posts: 3

Short Stories: 51

Short Stories by Guest Blogger : 2

Movie Reviews: 68

Categories : 51

Categories with the highest number of posts: Personal (330 Posts)

Categories with the lowest number of posts : Causes (1 Post )

Best day ever in terms of Hits: 1414 (2nd March 2007)

Average hits per day : 550

Total Number of comments: 4080

Total Spam comments : 62945 (Amazing number of spam comments)

Top three months with highest number of posts: August 2005 (29 posts) June 2006 (28 Posts) and July 2007 (23 Posts)

Total posts in 2004 : 31 (0.5 posts per week)

Total posts in 2005 : 165 (3.1 posts per week)

Total Posts in 2006 : 176 (3.3 posts per week)

Total Posts in 2007: 194 (3.7 posts per week)

Total Posts in 2008 till date: 86 (3.4 posts per week)

Average Posts per week since creation: 2.7 posts per week

Completed 500th Post on : 22nd August 2007

Completed 400th Post  on : 26th February 2007

Completed 300th Post on : 8th August 2006

Date when reached 1 Lakh Hits : 25th December 2006

Date when reached 2 Lakh hits : 3rd May 2007

Date when reached 3 Lakh Hits: 9th September 2007

Date when reached 4 Lakh Hits: 16th January 2008

Date when reached 5 Lakh Hits: 18th June 2008

Started blogging in WordPress: 21 Feb 2006

Time taken to reach 100 Thousand hits: 11 Months and 4 days

Post to reach 100 Thousand: 366 Posts

Time take to reach the next 100 Thousand (200 Thousand): 5 months and 8 days

Post to reach Next 100 thousand (200 Thousand): 66 Post (post count: 433)

Time to reach Next 100 Thousand (300 Thousand): 4 months 6 days (129 days)

Post to reach Next 100 Thousand (300 Thousand): 73 Posts (post count 510)

Time to reach Next 100 Thousand (400 Thousand): 4 months 7 days (129 days)

Post to reach Next 100 Thousand: 65 Posts (post count 575)

Time to reach Next 100 Thousand (500 Thousand): 5 months 5 days (155 days)

Post to reach Next 100 Thousand:  78 Posts (post count 566)

 

The Blog stats today

 

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The Daily Blog statistics

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Blog Statistics by Weeks. Its a downward trend

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Blog statistics by month – Its been a downtrend since last 400 Thousand

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All time hits

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The Top Post

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Aria has tagged me and I am not so good at the tagging stuff. I usually take a long time to complete a tag but this time I am happy to do it and it couldn’t have come at a better time. As I complete my 600th Post tomorrow, its seems appropriate to have a look back at some turned pages. As I normally do not visit my old post, I guess it was nice going back to them. Some post make me say “Ummmm”, Some “Why?” and some “Not so bad?”. At the end, its all in there, unedited and undeleted since the time it was written.

As the tag says;

Post 5 links to 5 of your previously written posts. The posts have to relate to the 5 key words given : family, friend, yourself, your love, anything you like. Tag 5 friends to do this meme. Try to tag at least 2 new acquaintances (if not, your current blog buddies will do) so that you get to know them each a little bit better.

The tag does restricts to the 5 topics but I am not sure if it restricts to 5 posts so I will go wild with it. At 600 posts, you cannot expect me to restrict a post per topic. There are too many stories out there. Sorry for not doing the tag properly

 

Family

I started the blog with something about my dad back in 2004 and then it took me some time to write about Mom. My family cannot be complete without the family who are not related by blood but nevertheless they are family. I still haven’t given them relations and I guess I never will but not every relation have to be named. After 600 post too, my brother still does not figures here prominently. Strange!

 

Friends

A lot many of them, Rahul, Vaibhav, Chetan, Sandeep, RishikaLize, Amol, Pramod, Mathew, Sameer, Monica and a few more have featured here. Sometimes as a whole post about them and sometimes just a mention here and there. A lot many memories are linked to them

 

Yourself

The blog has been about me, me and ME . It was rarely about others and it has a lot of “I”, right from my Name to the 20 distinct characteristics about me to my ability to use abusing words that I can make the whole Aussie team run to the court to my bad qualities. I guess if I look back every 10 post, there is something of ME in there. I do look like a self-centered fool.

 

Love

Apart from me and the family, she has been here all this time. In fact the first reason for me to start writing was her and the time we spent together. From her birthday to her going away, I sort of remember everything, almost 6 years after she has gone. And then there is one who almost never gets mentioned here. I wonder why love is “lost” for me.

 

Anything

I like taking photos and I like watching movies and I like making stories. I like Mumbai and I like music too. Its all in there somewhere.

 

Its time to pass on the tag. Do go ahead and complete it and I tag

Deepa

Deepti

Blue Hues

Ardra

Ashu

For others, please do take it up in case if I missed!

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The timing could not have been better but the double celebration just missed by a day. On 15th January 2008, Full2 Faltu completed 4 years of existence and today on 16th January 2008, Full2 Faltu received a total of 400 Thousand (Four Lakh) hits.

As I always say the credit for number of posts goes to the writers but the credit for the number of hits goes to the readers. I would like to thank all my readers, old and new, vocal and silent for reading the crap I dish out regularly. Although I receive less comments, the hits count is a sort of encouragement. After every lakh it feels that the next lakh would be difficult and it almost takes the same time it took for the last lakh.

Sometimes it feels that I have run out of topics and maybe some day I will and maybe I won’t. I can’t predict but it has been so far so good

I would like to thank everybody for coming so far with me.

Again in no particular order I would like to thank

Abodh, Asuph, Iyengar Chick, Theseus, Ronak, Monica, Kunal, Moksh Sandeep, Prashant, Pragati, Kusum, Yatin, Broken Heart, Bombay Addict, La Louve, Aria, Keds, Vi, Ankahee, Shimul, Shruthi, Rishika, Duhita, Neha, Neha Ashu, Ano, Ardra, Bhole, Parikrama, Meera, Oz, Vijay, Taks, Y, Mathew, IBA, Chitra, Deepa Deepti and many more unnamed readers who have come here to increase the hit counter.

I am sorry if I missed some of you again.

And for the usual statistics that go with such post. I can be a big show-off 🙂

Total Number of post : 575 (including the current one)

Guest Posts : 17

Forwarded Emails Posts: 3

Short Stories: 47

Short Stories by Guest Blogger : 1

Movie Reviews: 65

Categories : 50

Categories with the highest number of posts: Personal (292 Posts)

Categories with the lowest number of posts : Books, Recipe (1 Post each)

Best day ever in terms of Hits: 1414 (2nd March 2007)

Average hits per day : 650

Total Number of comments: 3775

Total Spam comments : 47,105 (Amazing number of spam comments)

Top three months with highest number of posts: August 2005 (29 posts) June 2006 (28 Posts) and July 2007 (23 Posts)

Total posts in 2004 : 31 (0.5 posts per week)

Total posts in 2005 : 165 (3.1 posts per week)

Total Posts in 2006 : 176 (3.3 posts per week)

Total Posts in 2007: 194 (3.7 posts per week)

Total Posts in 2008 till date: 9 (3 posts per week)

Average Posts per week since creation: 2.7 posts per week

Completed 500th Post on : 22nd August 2007

Completed 400th Post on : 26th February 2007

Completed 300th Post on : 8th August 2006

Date when reached 1 Lakh Hits : 25th December 2006

Date when reached 2 Lakh hits : 3rd May 2007

Date when reached 3 Lakh Hits: 9th September 2007

Started blogging in WordPress: 21 Feb 2006

Time taken to reach 100 Thousand hits: 11 Months and 4 days

Post to reach 100 Thousand: 366 Posts

Time take to reach the next 100 Thousand (200 Thousand): 5 months and 8 days

Post to reach Next 100 thousand (200 Thousand): 66 Post (post count: 433)

Time to reach Next 100 Thousand (300 Thousand): 4 months 6 days (129 days)

Post to reach Next 100 Thousand (300 Thousand): 73 Posts (post count 510)

Time to reach Next 100 Thousand (400 Thousand): 4 months 7 days (129 days)

Post to reach Next 100 Thousand: 65 Posts (post count 575)

The Four Hundred Thousand Mark reached at 17:15 Hrs IST, 16th January 2008

F2f

The Daily Blog statistics

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Blog Statistics by Weeks

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Blog Statistics by Months

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The top Post – Movie Review – Aga Bai Arechya

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In 2000, I started with the new job in the present company. It was a much much bigger company than my previous company. It was a different job profile. While I was teaching and at the same time handling customer calls in the Hardware company, the new job required me to do customer support.

After a week of looking at all offices in Mumbai, I was assigned to the most busiest of office in Mumbai. Although I had some experience in customer support, I was technically not comfortable with the job. I had never worked in such a big setup and certainly not supported so many users. The users and the job were quite demanding. I was very used to be called “Sir” by my students and everybody would listen to me. Here I was at the receiving end facing customers.

The first thing I notice in the office that it was a complete madhouse there. So many people, three phones ringing continuously, calls being logged and complete chaos and I loved it. It was round the clock support baring the weekends. About three months after I joined, it turned into a 24*7 support but that is for another time.

It took me some time to get used to the team. It was only a month after joining that I started doing the night shift. It was scary at first because I was not that technically strong by that time nor was I confident of handling such a site. Working in Night shift meant working alone and monitoring all the different services. Although help was available from the seniors round the clock, I had to keep my cool during crisis.

However the department relied heavily on a simple policy; based on a famous jungle saying

“If you fall in water, You will learn to swim automatically”

We worked using the “On the job” training and everyday we would learn something new. The first time I installed Windows NT Operating system, it took me more than 4 hours. It normally takes less that 45 minutes. We learned the hard way and knowledge was passed on by experience. The person who had the most experience was the senior person.

The job involved being in charge of the functioning of the office. It included keeping the computers, links and basically the whole infrastructure working. The prime responsibilty was  keeping the office running at all time, in all circumstances. Sometimes it would be physically or technically impossible to maintain that too. It was stressful and strangely was my escape route from the boring life I needed.

I felt a great sense of power maintaining the infrastructure. I had everything at my disposal and I could do anything with it even though we never had the time to do anything we wanted as we were answerable to a lot of people but then it gave me a sense of power, however false it must have been then.

It was hectic and we had lots and lots of calls. No matter how much we tried, we never were out of work. Added to it the six day week was tiring. Working almost 12-14 hours was normal. We were young and had almost no social life so staying in office was the most obvious choice and in spite of working so much and living a hectic life, it was fun.

It was fun because of the team we worked with. It was the team which made coming on weekends and working in a six-day week worthwhile. Most of the time we never worked 8 hours. It was always more. The team of almost 8-10 people were the only people I saw. They became my new friends.

Working in 24*7 department meant giving up a lot of things which included many holidays. I remember when I joined and was just 2 months into the job, Dassera was around the corner. We would have the week’s shift schedule declared before the coming week and I was scheduled in the morning shift for Dassera. I asked them “Don’t we have a holiday on Dassera?”

They smiled at me like they meant “Bache you are going to miss a lot more holidays from now”

I gave the same smile to my colleagues who joined after me. It was a smile that we all knew because it was not just Dassera, it was Diwali, Christmas, New year and every festival you could think of. We did not come for all festival as we would get holidays on some days. It was better if you had colleagues from different religion like I would have to come on Id and my Muslim colleague would have to come on Diwali. The political Mumbai band and stops due to rain were the worst days. In Mumbai band, our company arranged for a hotel near the office but obviously no transport. So we had to walk to the office. In situation where Mumbai came to a standstill due to natural reason like rains and if it was a weekend, the person in the office would surely had to do two shifts and sometimes there were instances of three shifts. He was given a holiday the next day.

And we did a lot of holidays, holidays which went to the account of our compensatory offs, compensatory offs which we never took. we liked the office lot than we admitted. We cursed it, we made fun of it but we dedicatedly came to office on a weekend or public holiday when there was just one person on the whole floor and the canteen served just dal-rice for lunch/dinner and cold sandwiches for snacks. There was not much work in weekends except taking backups and other work which was pending during the busy week. Sometimes it was just sitting around and waiting for something to happen.

The first shift which began at 7:00 AM and the general shift which began at 9:00 AM are the most tiring shifts of all the three shifts more because of the phone. Also there is no end to these two shifts in terms of timing. The second and the Third shift had a fixed ending time.

I have great respect for people working in call centers. Handling customer call over the phone is no easy task and it can be quite a tiring experience. The phone in our department room would start ringing just before 9:00 AM and would finally stop just before 9:00 PM. It would still ring after that but the chances of phone ringing after 8:00 PM are very less.

In spite of being in office for most holidays, weekends and even during bands, we were the most hated of all departments. We were always “good-for-nothing”. When I look back at all that, it does seem hectic and I wonder how I did it but then I was young and I did it because of all my colleagues. I understood the concept of “All for one and one for all”. When I joined a new project in Amsterdam, I was surprised to find “Everyone for himself” concept. The focus shifted from “it was our fault” to “it was his fault” Call in camaraderie or loyalty toward our fellow colleague, in all the crisis we knew to save each other’s ass. I knew that If I save his ass, he would save mine. It was less of my responsibility and more of our responsibility.

I guess many of my friends who worked with me during those days would agree that it was busy, it was hectic and it was frustrating and it was one of the best day of my life.

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To be continued……………

Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6, Part 7 and Part 8

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The first batch in the new center in Mazgaon passed away without any failures. In addition, a student of my class came in the top. I was known as a good teacher and the next batch saw a phenomenal increase in the number of students. It was not just the success of one teacher but the whole center because the students came because of the reputation of the center.

The success of the batch was so great that the strength of the second batch grew by almost four times the previous batch. Suddenly we were one of the best profit center compared to the head office and another small office in the suburb.

The question bank had grown beyond our imagination. We shared the question bank with other centers and It became a great tool to prepare the students for the exam. As almost all the students were from Government offices and the sole objective was passing the exams, we did focus on the exam perspective but also tried to make them understand the concept without mugging up the information we threw at them.

From the second class, I started observing a new trend. The presence of competition among the students. The competition was so fierce that students would come to us and fight for each and every mark. Sometimes I was blown over by the logic they gave and even though I was supposed to be the teacher, the answer they suggested also seem right. This was good because it meant good results for us. It was not only among the batch, results were compared among batches. After every exam, the next day, all the batches knew how the other batches had fared.

All the teachers have to be in sync. We would be in a difficult position if we gave different answer for the same question in different batches because question papers were discussed in the offices and answers would be verified and re-verified.

It was interesting to see people who had long left studies being so passionate about doing well, even though it was just to get ahead of their colleagues. Most of my students were married and had children. They lived a very routine life compared to work and the classes brought the fun back.

By the fourth batch, we were selling like hot cakes. One of the students came to us and told us how reputed the institute was. He said that if you want to pass exams, go to the rival institute and if you want to learn and pass exams with good marks come to us. I felt so proud of myself that day.

I hardly scolded my students and each and every query was handled with patience. I guess that made me a very popular teacher. One day when I visited the Sales Tax office, I was surprised to know many people knew me there by my name.

I took a class on computer network which went for more than three hours. It was a class where I did the talking and the students listened. I taught all batches at once because it involved explaining some the networking concept for more that three hours and it was quite boring. Among all the teachers in all the location, Chetan and I were the best teachers for the subject.

We were called in all centers to give that particular subject but I have to agree that it could get pretty boring to listen to someone for three hours. I would give them breaks but then I would find them getting all sleepy. I remembered by school and college days when I would sit for such classes feeling quite bored. I tested if my students would be awake by speaking the most insane lines during a boring explanation like;

“So a LAN is small group of Network and Madhuri Dizit danced so well in Tezaab and each computer can be connected to the server”

If the crowd was paying attention, then there would be surprise from most of them. Others would suddenly look up with the sudden burst of laughter and did not get the joke at all. These were the people who can sleep with their eyes open.

My classmates who had joined my present company confirmed that the job they took was not according to the job description given by the HR. This was the same job I rejected because it had the word “Hardware” in it. They informed me that the company was recruiting people for the same job. We decided to try again. Chetan, Rahul and I went for the interview
I found the same person who took my Interview last time. I found the same HR person who was with him. I got the same aptitude test. They almost asked me the same question with a variation here and there.  Again I got selected but Chetan and Rahul did not make it. I guess it was my good luck.

By the end of July 2000, I was ready to leave the job. For the first time, I had a batch only of teenagers. It was our first non-government students batch. It was more difficult controlling them. Adults are easier to control but teenagers have this bundle of energy that they want to do more. They are also fast learners.

I had to leave the batch mid-way because my joining date was very near. It was a teary farewell from all the students. The job I was joining was totally different from the job I was doing. I was a king here and the new job had a description of customer support where customer was the king. Things were about to change

I left the company after staying one and half year. I also had to leave the hardware company as I did not have time to work there.

On 5 September  2000 I joined my present company

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To be continued……………

Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5, Part 6 and Part 7

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