What career to chose seems to be the most critical questiong in the growing up stage. There is this friend of mine, relatively new, is an engineer turned business man turned teacher cum professional blogger. In his blog there is this post where he has mentioned about the eassy in school we use to write about our goal in life. (Refer and find out if you can read Assamese www.pratibhudutta.blogspot.com). In indian context eassy marks = your capacily to mug up and re produce!!
So when I see those kids getting worried and confused about what to become and those who knows exactly what are the steps to reach point A, I thought of sharing my career journey.
In one of the TV series, I heard this dialogue "High School is the most difficult place for any one who is least bit different". In my case this seems to fit exactly bang on. I grew up with my sister who knew she wanted to be an architect in 8th standerd. A bit rare in our time, when people only knew and wanted to be either a doctor or an engineer. But she did know and she did become one. Right now she is well established in a different country. And there I was, I knew that I do not want to be a banker, engineer and doctor. But I did not know anything about alternative careers. So I was that kid, who wanted to leave my home town but to do what? No idea.
So, back to my story! After whatever I have done I have turned out to be considerably successful with my prfession. And I often face a question, '' by the way what is your basic qualification?'' In most cases I want to say either ''none of your business'' or ''12th Pass''. I like the 12th pass answer personally because that seems to be basic because I felt forced to complete my studies till than. So after finishing my basic qualification I went on to persue a graduate degree and a post graduate degree in computers. Till than it was okay. Trouble started when I picked up my first job ! On my first technical job in 45 days I realised, I cannot be without sunlight for minimum 10 hours! I am no Dracula's ( thought I love this character) relative. So there ended my much sought after (then), shortest route to a foreign posting 'techy' career !!
What came next was another few months of unemployed and being supported by my father, did not like this condition, but made the ground for where I wanted to be. For me I made a few rules (write to me if you want those); and job hunting started.
I am no career Guru, but this is what worked for me!
One very fine wednesday morning ( I know the day because the job suppliment of my newspaper comes that day) I saw a 'walk-in' advert, address of which was almost next door to my then residence. So about 10.30 in the morning I land up in this first floor house - yes it did not look or feel like an office from any angle. What I saw was about 50 odd 'job seekers', one kancha ( a nepali teenager) and no one !!! Found myself a chair and kept waiting for about 30 minutes. Just to mention, I have the worst patience in this case.
In those 30 minutes, I found out, the hall was attached to two additional rooms and had a toilet (dirty and stinky). Behind one of those two closed doors was some one, who was trying to meet every one individually in the age of BPO, JAM and choice by elimination!!
So since I was almost pissed, and do not know on what impulse, I knocked, disturbed in between an interview and walked into that room. I did not realize any thing, but remember that I said "do you realize how many people you have waiting? Donn't you have a coordinator or something?'' The surprised and shocked reply came '' can you wait, right after I finish this I shall call you''. Sometimes later, I was called in. And I offered to sort the mess outside and coordinate and talk rest of my contract once it is cleared. I think that was 8th August 2003 !! And my journey to becoming an HR started.
My advise, if you do something so irratic, be ready for the consequesnces.
I am still friends with my first boss, though I practically ran away from that place!
About Colonel and his boots behind barracks, some other time!!