Thursday, March 29, 2007

Make long-distance love work!

This post is originally from Pradeep Chakraborty's Blog!

Some of my friends have been pestering me to write pieces that are non-technical, especially on relationships, as though I am some master.
A few of them have even thrown questions such as what I thought of long-distance love. Does it exist? Does it even work? Is it worthwhile to carry on such an endeavor? Can the other person be trusted? Let me give this a try. Though, may I add, I’m no love guru, but more of an optimistic tech writer.

We live in an Internet era. I do remember reading about some instances of people having met online, having chatted, eventually starting to love and respect each other, and eventually, leading up to hopefully, marriage. So, that would make me say, hey guys, it works! Look at all these social networking sites. Or, some other sites that encourage online dating.

What is the objective of such sites? To allow people to become friends, to chat and talk, and stay in touch, and hopefully, carry things forward. The very fact that these sites exist mean that people are willing to come online and search around for possible new friends, and perhaps, long-time partners. And on several occasions, we see the phenomena of long-distance love taking place. Hopefully, most lead to happy endings as I believe in those.

Initially, all that chatting and speaking online should be very captivating and enchanting. And then, like all normal relationships, reality starts biting when the ‘honeymoon’ period gets over. The only difference being, in case of long-distance love, you don’t really know what the other person is actually doing or thinking, which would otherwise be easier in cases of face-to-face contact.
An argument against long-distance love has been that you don’t know really who’s taking you for a ride. Well, I guess, it’s just plain bad luck, should that ever happen. I can imagine that there would be the normal disillusionment, agony and pain, I gather. However, everyone moves on, eventually.

So, is it worthwhile to enter into such an endeavor? Of course, why not? Not everyone is out there to take you for a ride! There are a whole lot of very serious people out there. There are also a whole lot of honest folks out there too. And they are all looking for friendship, love and possible companionship. We are after all dealing with human emotions.

Once a relationship enters the emotional phase, I would assume (sorry, I can only assume) that there would be those regular quarrels, power tussels, etc., between partners. Again, should these quarrels or power tussel take an ugly turn, it would be prudent to expect that love, or long-distance love, would go out of the window. This, should NEVER happen. Avoid these as much as possible if your goal is success.

Unless someone is really a bad and selfish person, I dont’ think it would do any good on anyone’s part to settle scores with the other side, should the long-distance love get derailed. If you are out to settle scores, then there wasn’t any love in the first place.

The key factors in any relationship are trust and chemistry. In long-distance relationships, you must trust each other, at times, blindly, before even thinking of moving forward. If that online chemistry is not there, the trust won’t be there as well. Yes, it’s very important that partners or couples trust and respect each other, like any relationship, and especially more so, in case of long-distance love.

A word on trust. It takes time, and really a lot of time to build trust. Especially, more so, for long-distance love. Don’t jump the gun and expect the other person to start trusting you right away. With trust, comes respect, and eventually, love. Why, this simple principle applies to friendships as well!

So, my take on long-distance love is: Yes, it works! The partners should work on their chemistry and definitely, trust each other a lot. If you are not prepared to work on your chemistry, then don’t waste the other person’s time just for fun.

Never hide your feelings. Don’t ever let the other person know that you have been disrespecting him/her, as it can be quite devastating. Yes, sometimes an innocent word can mar a long-distance love affair, so be prepared to explain a lot and be patient, actually, very, very patient.
Also be a little careful with your words. Or, you should trust each other so much that you are able to make up quickly and move forward, without wasting time.

To end on an optimistic note for all those into long-distance love: be ready to practice, preach and sing the famous song — “Nothing’s Gonna Change My Love For You”, believe in those words, and make that count!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Law of Superior Inferiority!

This post is originally from Pradeep Chakraborty's Blog!

Hmmm, now that’s a topic worth talking about! Actually, I am indebted to my friend Aninda Sen for nudging me out of my slumber and making me think on lines of how one man’s destiny could be another man’s manipulation! And what role the law of superior inferiority could play!!

Okay, so what is this law of superior inferiority? Simple, quite simple. Your superiors know and get the impression that you are streets ahead of them. And since they are aware of this fact, they themselves suffer from what you’d call “Superior Inferiority”.

I get the feeling that somehow, most of my superiors somehow ended up feeling inferior to me. Otherwise, why is it that most of them tried to control me all the time, and nearly always failed. However, when I did get fed up of their antics and slammed the door, they were the ones begging me, or rather, trying to manipulate me to stay on as though their very life and career depended on me!

Would you call that “one man’s destiny is another man’s manipulation?” Perhaps, so! And, how?

One man’s destiny makes him a wonderful employee who works wonders for a company. Now most of us believe that people leave bosses, and not companies. Well, in this case, a superior tries his best to control this “match winner” and even try and take credit for his success. However, this won’t work all the time, though it may work once or twice.

So, our “match winner” suddenly decides to leave. And lo, that’s where his destiny sometimes becomes another man’s (his superior’s) manipulation.

The superior, under the influence of the ‘law of superior inferiority’ knows how it would affect the company should this wonderful employee leave! That’s when he suddenly starts his manipulation, in his bid to retain this employee. Now, depending on how gullible this wonderful employee is, chances are he would be manipulated somehow into staying back by his “inferior” superior.

And why shouldn’t the superior try and manipulate this man? After all, he’s made the superior’s record look very, very good! And the superior would want that to be maintained in future. So, he’ll hardly leave stones unturned into retaining his superman worker! Hence, one man’s destiny becomes another’s manipulation! Easy!!

I’m sure there are most of you out there who have experienced similar situations. Why not share your experiences?

Monday, March 26, 2007

Building up industry knowledge

This post is originally from Pradeep Chakraborty's Blog!

Fate has been most kind to me. Fate has also been most kind to me in terms of bringing me in touch with several good folks who appreciate whatever little talent I possess.One of my good friends, Alfred, once suggested that I speak to the team regarding building up industry knowledge. May I also add that two of my very, very dear friends, Kevin and Jo, felt great pride after reading my presentation, and thanked me profusely. Well, it’s all worth it when you have friends such as these who take time to appreciate your efforts. They make my day, my life! Thanks guys!!

Here’s what I had to say regarding building up industry knowledge.

‘Speaking’ the supplier’s language
* From experience, suppliers open up to those who can share information on their industries/verticals.
* From experience, suppliers open up to those who can share information on other markets.
* From experience, suppliers open up to those who provide good suggestions.
* Suppliers DO NOT open up easily, if you cannot provide insights about verticals.
* Suppliers would respect you more if you could provide meaningful suggestions.
* Suppliers look for leads; develop a habit of providing those.
* Suppliers look for trust; provide that by exchanging relevant information.
* If covering components, try and get an insight on the industry, it helps!
* If covering electronics, computer or telecom, know industry background a bit; see how a supplier laps up all the information you may have.
* Supplier looks for trust too, provide it!
* Convert the supplier into a trusted ally.
* Try and understand what buyers need; it helps understanding supplier needs.
* From experience, suppliers keen to know what’s happening in India and China? Can you provide that info?
* China and India are strong cases, know more about them.
* Most of all, keep learning all the time!
* Educate yourself.
* No one can say, “I’ve a good knowledge about the industry.”
* There is no end to learning.
* Everyday, new things are happening.

How do we keep pace with so many new things happening in the verticals? The best way is to educate yourself at work!

Education-at-work programs
* Bookmark relevant Web sites – visit them often.
* Sign up for newsletters and news – at least read the headlines.
* Flip through technology and other magazines you may get your hands on – there’s always something to learn.
* Build your network and get help.
* Visit Web sites of leading research firms, there’s lot of information out there.
* Visit Web sites of industry associations.
* Visit Web sites of industry events, look at the live coverage.
* Browse presentations of industry events, excellent way to track trends.
* Read relevant articles in print/Web.
* If you don’t understand a technical term do search on the Web/dictionary.
* Listen to what suppliers say – you can pick up lots of points.
* Talk to your seniors, especially in sales and editorial – they have lot of information to share.
* Look up competitor Web sites and magazines – always have relevant stuff.
* Read flyers and memos from sales and marketing departments.