Tag Archive | consultant

A Consultancy, and their Client in a Country

A pathetic story of a friend who was really a good company for me during his stay in Dubai. ( A Re-post of my friends Story)

A popular Consultancy name in country, and specifically in Dubai. They are into the business of staffing (supply staff to different clients) for more than 75 years, and to my surprise they own the title of best place to work for last 3 years. But I actually went to their office only after resigning. Staff has to work on client side. When inquired about the offer, friends suggested that it is good to start. As the person from the consultancy who was constantly in touch belongs from my home town, I believed him. I was given no time to think and flight tickets were booked by them the very next day when they received the visa. I started the next day.

After landing here, I came to know that I trusted wrong person. They did not give me initial accommodation, and was left on my own. They brought me here on clerk visa and assured me that once I provide them my attested degree certificate, they will change the visa, which was never done. Even the medical insurance was not what they informed me over the call. No medical card. The medical insurance was treatment at their clinic located far from where I lived, next to their accommodation facility (which was again for non IT staff). Apart from all this, they also took my passport (which is usual with many companies here), and did not process the payroll when I went for approved vacation. They also deducted half of the flight ticket price which was huge, as they booked it on very short notice. All this I experienced in first few weeks. After first three months when I asked to change the client, they kept it pushing till I submitted the resignation last month. After my last working day, I had to wait for more than 20+ days without any allowance to get the final settlement and get my visa cancelled.

Only good point with consultancy was they paid me salary on time, which is again not usual with many consultancies here.

Now Client was again very popular in the country. They are known across the globe for building the tallest tower, because of which I did not think much for accepting the offer. After joining, I was excited for my project work as the team was very cooperative. All my excitement turned into pain in few days. Manager threatened to terminate the contract if the pace of delivery remain unchanged. I was shocked. I never heard anything like that before. It was not even few weeks (within a month) so that I could digest something like that. One has to understand the business, existing setup, their processes, tools and technologies are similar not the same, so it takes some time for one to get accustomed. After knowing that manager is not happy with the work, I stretched till late in evenings and worked on weekend to complete first assignment. And after that few more unrealistic deadlines, without any word of encouragement/ motivation. I noticed that managers threaten in public to contractors about their termination if they don’t perform. This atmosphere was completely disgusting and I informed my consultancy that I would not like to work here. I was informed that no projects were available with other clients at that moment (they never found any other opportunity). They kept rotating the contracts of consultants by every 3 months, and usually the consultant would not know till the last moment whether the contract would be extended.Consultants who worked even for more than 2 years were kept on 3 or 6 months rolling contracts. They thought this is the way they could get the work done, by threatening and humiliating. I don’t know to which management schools these guys went. There will be no planning. All the projects will be running and eventually they end up with never ending scope and new deadlines every now and then. Ultimately no project is complete and successful in the defined timeframe.

I decided that it is not the place for me, and I can’t waste my time here. When I was looking for the opportunity, I got the invitation to join one of the old mentor/ manager with whom I worked in my previous organization. That’s time to call it an end!

In last few months, I got opportunity to work on mobile and back end ETL. Also developed applications integrating BI with Microsoft office. That’s a learning and I take it back with me.

That’s unfortunate for me to have such an experience, but I did not find the rules in the country very friendly for employee. Stuff such as holding the passports of employees so that one cannot escape from company or country, submitting the passport to employer for visa cancellation, etc. I find against ones freedom and liberty being from a democratic country. Thought we save decent margin of money by working here, but at the cost of ones freedom and liberty, I think I am better back home.

Good bye, dear consultancy, company and country. Thanks for this experience that made me know the value of freedom and liberty in my very democratic country.

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Glorious 5 Years in Arowana Consulting

Glorious 5 Years in Arowana Consulting

I am really amazed to see myself from the year 2009 to 2014… How I was in 2009? What kind of great changes in 2014? How is it possible?

I am not sure whether it is because of Arowana or because of my Age. One thing is for sure that I am working with a good employer and probably I can say as best employer for me.

Why is it a big deal for me to write about 5 years in a company? 

Only very few know with whom I am very close to from 1994, that I hate to continue in one company or in one stream and I will not be able to do a monotonous job.  My resume also will speak about my switching careers, but it is part of life, but somehow I wanted to stick with one company at least for 3 years. My patience level with most of the companies is 11 months and maximum was 19 months, I will learn and earn and leave the company. (not matured to serve the company)

I can say that whatever I learned, I utilized all my experiences with Arowana to stick with them for 5 years. Apart from Utilizing my own experiences, I learnt the art of patience from Arowana. I have to thank them for the way they have given me the opportunities. I have shown my attitude, arrogance as like others but when it is required to show my self-respect and not to damage the reputation of the company.

Now I know that I can’t beat this record of 5 years with any other companies as I don’t have that much patience to work for long time.

I remember how I joined Arowana and it was not a decision I made to stay here for 5 years. In an anger, I resigned from my previous employer. Initially I thought to take it as break. I was working continuously without any break. Due to the market situation/recession, I was forced to take a long break almost for 5 months and Arowana’s offer was the first one on my way while I was enjoying the break. I took it to give an end to my break, thinking that I will work for 3 or 6 months with them and I will switch over. That was the opinion provided by the friend who was with Arowana at that time.

Arowana might not be a ROSE flower to smell and enjoy the fragrance but it is not a cactus. If anyone is feeling it as a cactus, please find your way is what I will say as an employee of Arowana. No one is forcing you to hug a cactus for your survival and the more you are hugging, you will feel it as pain and create pain for others. We are the plants and we make it as a rose or cactus and I believe in it, I move with that belief.

From the day of joining, I know the people who are close to me, known to me who was working with arowana, left the organization and from other companies friends also left, but I never felt that I have to leave or even I have not given a try to find a job outside. Couple of years ago I tried with one of the company in India, and that was a trial to brush my skills to attend an interview.

4 years back one of my best friends who know me since 1995 asked me about my whereabouts in Skype, I told her that I am working with Arowana consulting and am into ERP Oracle practice from 2004. To her great surprise, she questioned me, how come you are still with Oracle, I thought by this time you would have switched to SAP/Siebel or out of IT.

After a short conversation with her, she asked how long you are with Arowana, Please change your company as soon as possible. I was surprised to hear this, because one side she was happy that I am into ERP for long time and she doesn’t want me to work with Arowana. She is like one of my best friend whose words are like bible for me, I will follow her.

But this time, I asked her the reason for it. She said, the reputation of the company is not good, the more you stay with them, you are going to lose your value. May be that is one of the reason for me to continue such long or what I don’t know.

I told her with a smile in my face, company’s reputation is based on the employees not based on the employers. Arowana does well means its employees are doing well and Arowana is doing worst or bad, then it means employees are not doing well.

Above all, I don’t have any issue with Arowana and I am happy to be part of it. I will not search a job as long as I am working with them. If I feel that I have to resign from Arowana, I will do it without even thinking for a minute, but as of now I am happy. Absolutely there is no issue with the company. She knows how I came out of Singapore, in 1996, I have thrown resignation on the Manager’s face for not approving the leaves and I am still proud of that act. But I will not do such thing for sure in future, you learn from your mistakes.

There are people who used to leave the organization without giving the notice period, without serving the notice period. We do have some hiccup issues but I can manage with it. I am thinking myself as an employer as I have faced these kind of heat and I know the difficulties of running an organization. If someone wants to leave for such reason, let them go and even I will say don’t stop them.

I don’t have any issues either with holding the passport (I hold my passport) or with the leaves or with the medical reimbursements or with any other thing for that matter. There is a delay but it is a known fact and even when I refer someone, I used to tell them all these as facts and if you wish, you can send your CV.

Whatever you are reading from the consumer complaints or any other social media are based on the individual employees reviews and comments. Everywhere it is same that when you are going to leave the organization, we have to see the hatred at both the ends. No Company is good in that matter. If at all I have to get relieved smoothly or for any other reason, I have to do the needful. Tomorrow I might have to face the heat but I am sure that I will not face like others or cry for that matter.

At times companies like TCS, Infosys sends a team out. Arowana has not gained any bad name of sending its employees. Here and there they would have asked one or two cases to leave based on some comments or feedbacks from their customers.

The reason for sharing the above incident is to say that WE ARE THE PILLARS of the company and without me spoiling the name of the company, it will not get spoiled. I am trying my best effort not to harm my reputation and I expect the fellow Arowanites to do the same. At least for the salary what you get (even delayed, but still you are getting it), be sincere and faithful for what you are getting today from your employer.

Today on the day of completing 5 years, I can proudly say that I have got increments with my employer and I am happy with what I have got. The last increment was not satisfying but I don’t complain or crimp about it because it was done across the organization in the similar manner. I cannot demand more as I know what is the revenue that I am generating for the company. Apart from my Salary there are other components which needs to be considered and the profit margin will be less. I am an employee only, I don’t need to consider it, I can change my job. Yes no one is stopping me or Arowana is also not saying that “Dont Go” If I have something better than this, they will be happy to send me.

In one of the clients place, a CFO during the course of our conversation once said that Arowana has not done it properly and I asked him to repeat it, he said I have high respect for you, but Arowana has not done it well. I told him politely that whatever you are saying as Arowana implies only to me as I am representing AROWANA and how can you contradict with your statement?

In the Same Company, CEO has said that Arowana has got the best employees whereas I have not get the best.  When I heard that I am very proud of Arowana and not of that Company.

Every client will throw the bone pieces to its contract employees by saying that you will be offered here in our own payroll. When I was given the bones from the couple of the clients of Arowana,  I told them, am not a fool to join this company, which means I am at a better place.

Couple of days back, I got the chance to visit the client, one guy asked me, how is your career growth in Arowana, I said I am satisfied with my growth. When I shared my experiences, he said it is marvelous.

I always used to say that I am at a better place and if at all I wish to join some customers, I will do it on own not against Arowana. It is not an ethic to join their clients without their concern and also I love consulting. If I wish to leave consulting, then also I will get the other choices from Arowana. That is the belief and faith what an employee should have with their employers. Whether they guide me or they ask me the option I leave it to the situations.

Whether the career growth is measured in terms of money or position or the knowledge, then I am getting wise, wiser and wisest with the opportunities provided by my employer.

I may not use this knowledge after 5 years, but I will be using it for the next 5 years J

I am not a mouth piece of Arowana or I don’t have any share with Arowana Management , I am one like you who is waiting for the salary to come on expected date, waiting for the appraisals to happen and so on. I will also get the same treatment when I am going to leave the organization, but I give respect to my Employer, at least till the day I work for them. It doesn’t mean that I can write bad about the company for whom I served for so long.

As per the saying, Don’t love your company, I love my job and I don’t love my Employer but I give respect to my Employer for providing the basement for me to love my job.

When you are satisfied and content with your life, you can see happiness in anything and everything

Don’t compare a company which is in growing stage with the grown companies. If everyone opts only for MNC’s, how can we have many more MNC’s? In few years we will have some changes in Arowana also, but before that everyone will do the damage and leave the organization for their own benefits. If that is the case, then how a company can show its prosperity?

I know that I have learned in my learning path much ahead of the MNC’s. MNC’s Can utilize these skills but they can make us to learn what I have learned from Arowana.

What I sow is what I will reap and I want to be at peace. I am contented with what I have and I am happy with my employer. You can see lot of changes in me, both physically (Glowing because I am always happy), professionally I am growing matured (I have not raised my hands or voice at any one in the last 5 years)

Project – Consultants Vs Internal Team

This is one such pathetic experience what I am going to share now. In most of the Companies, either the business is driven by IT or the IT Projects are driven by the Business Process. I don’t know how to consider the below given experience as a business driven project or IT driven project.

This is one of the worst projects ever in my long career. I have seen many failed projects, but all those failures has valid reasons like scope was not frozen, due to time lines, due to changing factors in the requirement, due to the confusions from the consultants and adaptability from the customers to understand the functionalities that are available with the new system, Greek and Latin are the languages between the business and the consultants due to the lack of business knowledge for the customers.

I really don’t understand on what basis a project is being implemented in such a big organization. Is it to say that we have these products implemented in our organization or we use this product for our requirements? I really want to know 🙂

This is a scenario in which my role was a support consultant. Ultimately there was not role for me to play in this project. I was there to assist the vendor team with the current process (what is the current process, GOK – God only knows). With the support load, I was not able to be part of any of the discussions with the business or with the vendors and the way the project started its phase was really ridiculous.

Already they have a system or solution in place which is not 100% productive or in other words with lot of issues. Everyone knows the flows and flaws of the system, but they were not ready to clean up the mess which was already there in the system. Instead of cleaning that mess, they wanted to add some more features and functionalities which is being done out of the system.

The system which was used by them was like a broken boat, and we wanted the new system to be build based on the same broken boat. I don’t have a strong base and I wanted to build a huge ship on top of the broken boat.

As a support consultant, if you say that you are already in a sinking boat to the project manager or to the colleagues, beautiful answer from them was I know swimming, you don’t worry about it.

Hey man, I have to worry about it because I don’t know swimming and I can’t take the responsibility of my suicide because of you. It is not suicide and you are trying to kill me that was the thing going on in my mind.

Voice of the contractor doesn’t goes to the head of the department or the project manager or anyone who works for their own company. All my projects have to go on time, irrespective of whether it is being used by the business or not.

As usual for every success of the project the project manager will take the credit and for every failure, they will blame a scape goat.

I will start with the scape goat.

Scape Goat : Nevertheless to say

Sponsor of the project: I don’t know (whether it is from the business side or IT)

Steering committee: Only the same faces who involve discussing the issues and who has not taken any decisions for the same.

Project Manager: There was no such person who involved to be a mediator or to act like a professional bridge between the vendor and business.

Vendor : XXXX company

Vendor Consultant: A consultant to break her head for the project.

IT Team : Support team, whoever is free on that day, they will be called to attend the meetings and the information’s will not be shared with anybody else. If no one is free, no problem, we will handle it.

Testing Team: It is always said to be by business but in our case, we go with the vendor and the internal IT team, as they know the entire business in short span of time. Is it implementation or a part of add-in functionality like a new feature being introduced?

At times they will ask you to attend few meetings and later they will say not to be part of the project, because if you continue, you will not allow it to go live in the similar fashion, so as they can blame you for their failure.

Start Date:  The day they did the kick off

End Date: Business is unable to move ahead without this and the Scope is limited so ASAP (it was yesterday but today is fine),

Support: Support is not by the vendors who implemented the system, it has to be by the internal support team because the internal team has a rapport with the business users and was doing the support for the entire 250 or 300 users, who has twenty ear’s and 10 mouths to respond to all the queries from the business users after go live.

Height of this support is there should not be any escalation. (Who is Chariman’s Secretary, who is COO Secretary and who is what and who is normal user all this should be known to the bl**dy support consultant)

Go Live Date:  After go live one person has to go dead (They have already decided the scape goat and were waiting for the scape goat to come after the vacation)

Is it agony makes you to write, no it is my real feeling for that project and for the sake of the business.

After each day of my work, I sleep peacefully because of the satisfaction what I get, I am not here to entertain any foosl and I am here to serve for the organization goals is what needs to be in the minds of the project initiator and the driver of the project.

If someone feels that I am surviving in this organization by blaming someone for my failures, god is watching it and you have to answer for your mistakes.

Success is not measured by survivals, it is measured by the Effective Utilizations.

Scape Goats are not failures and everyone knows that it is blamed for others mistakes. I can say firmly that the projects handled in the above fashion will not yield any success either to the IT team or to the Business.

Jai ho with all your projects in the similar manner 🙂

Grief – Pain of Death

What is Grief?

Grief is the term used to describe emotional responses to major losses. Bereavement, grief, and mourning are all terms used to describe the same thing: the intense pain that follows the loss of a loved one.

I remember this word was told by my best friend recently and she said to me, you are not shedding your tears for the one who cheated you, but you are grieving for your lost child. Yes she was correct. I would have taken the grief also happily, if the kid would have died but it killed everyone and it is enjoying its life.

Most shameful thing is that one for whom I am killing  me(my happiness, peace, health, wealth, good habits) also asked me a question, if I die what will you do? I told her, I am not a Muslim to pack my grief in 3 days and we will have grief for one year and at least I will have deep pain for a year. but I didn’t know that before her death itself she will give that pain to me.

I know I was attending my own funeral by killing my happiness

This time I am not going to write about someone who is living, and this is about someone who will live in the hearts of many/ those who know him.

Senthil MariappanA Supply chain management consultant whom I know through my ERP network and I have not seen him during his life time, who has considered me as his sister and we used to chat a lot before and after his marriage. Due to work pressure and work tension and other unwanted association, I stopped most of my communications with many good hearts and Senthil was one among them.

Today I regret for not chatting with him during the last 1 year time. Most of the time, I used to communicate with almost those who are known to me and I don’t keep too much gap in my communication.

Due to the restrictions of the Gmail access and other social networking access in most of the companies, I have not seen him in online for long time and I am not very good in calling and speaking to my friends. I prefer to have the networking only through Gtalk or through Facebook. I do call those who used to pick their phone to reach me. Somehow we didn’t develop this kind of communication within us. I regret for not doing this my friend.

I have constant communications with his friends and I have asked about this guy with another friend also.

Suddenly a new ID, asked for permission to add me, I thought it is from a person who made me stupid by all means as I am expecting something from him. So added and asked a rough question who is this?  He asked “Do you know Senthil, I told him I know many Senthil as my brother’s name is Senthil, a friend from Abu Dhabi is Senthil, and couple of more people as Senthil from ERP network.

Even before answering my question he said, he passed away in Andaman. I was shocked and he pasted the local newspaper content.News paper confirmed it happened on 17th March. Tears were flowing like anything because of thinking about his wife who was married two years back. There are some ugly characters living in this world, but god likes only good hearts. He gives more pain to those who are good and takes good people to his kingdom who are very soft and good.

I was shattered; I was unable to believe that he is no more. I was not able to believe it, but the newspaper message said that it is him and it has shown the license copy of my friend. He died because of a heart attack and at the age of 31. Oh god, you are giving stone heart to some people and so soft heart to good people? what is this my lord? why are you playing like this?

There are people who are asking you for death, there are people who are sinners, who are cheaters, who are betrayers, who live and suck others blood like an animal, and this guy is so soft, a good heart person and why you wanted his life to end so soon?

Anyway I was grieving for something and god is showing that these kind of things are happening in the world, don’t worry, good deeds and bad deeds doesn’t come with others deeds. It is based on their own deeds only.

Grieving Losses – Grieving the loss of someone whom we love will be there in our heart for a long very long period and it is very painful process. But there is still hope. That we will cope up and come back to normal.

Grieving from a loss and healing from that loss require one to examine and re-examine the place of a loved one or a relationship. This process, the grief stages, of getting used to life without someone close to you can take over a year to work through. Experts have compared the death of a child, for example, to what it feels like to lose a limb. It gets easier to cope as time goes on, but it still takes a long time to work through the stages of grieving.

It’s easy to formulate a theory or a process for your grief to work through; however, actually working through those stages of grieving proves much more difficult. We may have a lot of method to grief, and each method looks different for each person.

After all, some steps in the healing process are easier than others—some days are easier than others. Your relationship with your loved one was unique (as like her name); expect you’re grieving to be unique. The way of hurt is also unique, very deep and it is very difficult to get healed, but god has shown the ways.

My grief was not in coping with death which allows you to meet really supportive people, but the death of someone inside the heart. But this death of my friend really made me to feel that why should I grieve because god has not taken that life, and even if it happens I will not feel heartache this much because I know that she is an unworthy person.

This death of my friend has given me a lesson that I have to be supportive to those who lost him as a mentor, the person who shared this news with me has got my mail id from my friend(Senthil) saying that she is my sister, send your CV to her, she will help you.

Somehow this new friend has not shared his CV with me, but when I got the friend request from him, I was really in a different mood and I was feeling that someone is going to get killed by me.

Bereavement requires a grief support group. Somehow I have an aversion of death and I used to get ready for the people around me about their death well in advance so as I can take it up when I face the situation.

As you work through the death of a loved one, you need a place where you can vent, where you can be honest about grief and your emotions, and where you can move through the grief stages without fear or regret.

If we get ready to get the support for the grief, it can provide a really support of friends who identify with you at a very deep level. They can move beyond showing you sympathy to really empathizing with you. I can say that I got lot of support to come out of the grief, unfortunately I was not able to come out of the grief and the situation how I was has become grief to many people around me. With the existing pain I was in deep pain because all the lovable people around me are also suffering because of me.

Will I ever see my loved one again?” The bonds forged by shared experiences are the strongest bonds. And, as you struggle to find meaning in death and dying, realize you’re not alone.

Sometimes, the sadness may be an opportunity for us to return to faith in God or involvement in our religious system. The belief in an afterlife can really ease our minds when it is for others but when it comes to loss of family members or the death of a child it is really a difficult task to handle.

I was killing myself for the death of my unborn child is really painful because, it was not born to me, but it was in front of me, it was not my adopted child, it was not of my blood  and I just felt the feeling of a child through her and how could I come out of this heavenly feeling?

She is alive and I have to consider her as dead. How to grief for the one who is alive and need to feel that she is dead? How to control myself with this feeling? What kind of death you have shown to my kid god? Why did you give that feeling through her? If I don’t grief for this then for what I could grief and I will not be called as a human because I don’t show my grief out for any other things other than the people hurting me in this way.  

Normally When I grieve for someone deeply, I will think 100 times and Iw ill come out faster. This time my grief is not only because of the death of my child, but also because of self-pity and I was not able to forgive myself for allowing someone to play with my feelings and sentiments

What is the purpose of grief in our life? The other name of mine is Hope and Encouragement. The way I give my hope and encouragements are from me, and it is not from their strength, it is from my strength, I am giving them the life of hope.

My word of hope creates encouragement in them and they find the hope in front of their eyes through me. To give others hope, I must have the hope of living and leading the life happily. I can’t tell someone smile from heart, when I don’t smile. When I say something to others I have to follow and I don’t like to tell someone which I don’t follow. I am a follower and not a preacher.

Finding God and Your Grieving – Anything under God’s Control is never out of control, God will make a way even though there seems to be no way!

May of my friends suggested me to enter into spirituality, but for me it is a big problem that I can even think about god, when I am not happy. That means I pray to god only when I am happy and I can’t go to him to cure my pain or sorrow. It is not the time to embrace my god, because he knows that I am weak if he gives me trouble. He knows my strength, he knows my weakness, and if he is giving me some pain means, he knows that I need the strength to overcome this and he knows when to give that strength also to me.

I beg for others to god not for my weakness because that weakness was given by god, why should I go and beg him saying that give me strength. I will say, I know you are the creator, you are the screen play writer, you wanted me to go through this pain, I don’t know how long I have to go through this, but give me the serenity to understand that “Even this will pass away”. I am very weak mentally and only with you I am a very strong woman. You are my strength, I trust in you and I move with your guidance. Do whatever you want to do with me. If this is your wish and play, let me enjoy and suffer it.

You want me to curse someone, let me do it, you want me to feel someone as very bad human of this world, let me feel it, but don’t make me to hate her. If you say that, then there is no use of all my grief. I know god, with great difficulty only you made me to come out of that hell. But still why did you allowed me to enter into the hell.

The Hold books are real, authentic, genuine book– filled with the stories and thoughts of real people. I don’t prefer to get into religious sentiments when I am sad because our mind will not allow us to get in touch or to feel the divine.

I know it helps to convince us that our grief is just in our head. Your grief is real, your pain is actual, and there’s still the opportunity for true healing.

If you consider most prominent people from religious front, their life was filled with sorrow, much of their life they will be betrayed, cheated, or wanted to be killed by his opponents, close friends cheating, family taking revenge, but they will be able to devote their time to god. Somehow I have not come to that situation to devote my time to god because I was holding the unwanted things in my hand, head, heart…

To end whatever I am, it is the glory of my beloved parents, friends, siblings, family, surroundings and the heavenly father. I know only one thing is that I don’t go with the wind, but I go with guidance of my god. My trust and faith in you can’t be shattered because of this kind of painful moments. I know you will help me to recover, but it really took long time as I have not spent that much time also with her.

They all have turned me from my mourning into smiling, of course dancing is not possible and I lost every charm of my life with one world. 

God has put off my black days and hugged me with gladness through different and new people, when I was holding the pain of my life and in deep grief. Thanks for the support.

I praise the god for giving the serenity in marvelous splendid way to accept the truth and not to go silent to the cemetery.  Thank you for giving me the realization that I was digging my own burial ground and giving me the clarity that I am not for that. I thank you for providing so many wonderful hearts around me and sincerely praying to you to guide all of them in their special way and keep all of them under your shadow and within the reach of my heart.