प्लेटफार्म पर इंतज़ार 

माथे पर नहीं थी कोइ शिकंज, ना मुख पर उलझन, कदम तेज़ थे, जोश अनोखा, आँखों में चमक नई थी, चहक रही वो जैसे मन ही मन, कुछ सपने बुनती डोल रही थी।

आई सवारी, तब उठा समान बिन बोले ही बोल रही थी । झटपट द्वार किए बन्द,  स्काईबैग को तब रोशन ने उठाया, गाड़ी को फिर स्टेशन की राह पर दौड़ाया। प्लेटफॉर्म पहुंच कर सामान 💼 उतारा,  लो अब बजने वाले थे बस बारा।

हुआ इन्तज़ार कुछ यूं लम्बा जब पढ़ा प्लेटफार्म पर रेल्वे का एलान जिसने जारी कर दिया ट्रेन लेट का फरमान । लम्हे फिर घंटों में बदले,  तन्हा कैसे कटे सफर?

हुई शुरू शिरकत प्लेटफार्म पर, लगने लगी उठक बैठक,  चार कदम आगे बढ़ते, दो कदम पीछे,  बैचेनी जब और बढ़ी, चाय 🍵 की प्याली हाथ चढ़ी, आँखें थीं  कि राह पर गड़ी,  घड़ी -घड़ी निगाहें घड़ी पर अटक जातीं स्टेशन की घड़ी से बारम्बार मिलाती।

फिर भी सहज सरल भाव लिए, थकावट को छुपाए हुए  बैठी रही चेहरे पर हल्की सी मुस्कान लिए , धड़कन कुछ तेज़ हुई जब इंजन की सीटी नें 🔉 आवाज़ दी। इंजन फिर दहाड़ा, हरी झंडी ने जब किया इशारा ।

ओझल फिर नज़रों से हो गई । थी कौन वो जो घंटो करके इन्तज़ार, थी न व्याकुल न लाचार। ममतामयी सूरत, वात्सल्य की मूरत।और कौन होगी वह? वह तो एक माँ ही होगी जो मन में मिलन की आस लिए, स्वयं ही चल दी बच्चों के पास न जाने कितने स्वप्न लिए ?

सच बड़ा ही खूबसूरत सफर होगा , मिलन का अहसास गज़ब होगा ।

On Christmas Night

Nights are like long stretches of darkness, like shades of grey scattered against the white, like silent caves hidden in the wilderness. “What are nights for?”, I asked? Do they mean something? Do they say something?

When the whole world is sleeping and you are alone in your kitchen baking and the aroma of cake fills the night air, the twinkling stars from their heavenly heights take a deep breathe and stop to stare, that moment is beyond words. You sitting at your window catch a glimpse of the stars and even before you could react, they smile and wink and disappear. Disappear where?

“Stars to what places you go?”; “Who are the people you meet?” As I wondered I heard a little jingle outside my door. Oh! is that Santa greeting me, is that him who stole my dream to shower me with gifts?

I opened the door and saw the green grass in the lawn covered with snow. Surely, the leaves rustled, the logs burnt bright and the candles glowed. Yes! it was …it was him. Sometimes you feel like kids. You wait with hope, with desperation for something or someone to wrap you around with a blanket of warmth. The cozy feeling enlivens your spirit. The quiet of the night sounds like a gentle drizzle.

Nights are like long stretches of darkness, like shades of grey scattered against the white, like silent caves hidden in the wilderness. “What are nights for?”, I asked? Do they mean something? Do they say something? Why do we say ‘Dark night’, ‘Lonely night’, ‘Scary night’, ‘Long night’? Nights are also bright, lighted, starry, cool, breezy, warm, gentle, comforting? Aren’t they? Nights are for rest, for peace, for rejuvenation, for celebration.

When a star twinkles, a lamp glows or a candle burns it is the darkness of the night that conspires to make them illumine the world. When standing at the edge of a dark tunnel rest assured that daylight is spreading its wings somewhere.

Darkness is not ugly or evil. It is a moment that leads to another moment. It is the stillness that ushers you to action. It is the oblivion that awakens your deeper conscience.

Knowing thyself is truth, truth is true knowledge. Happiness is not dependent on people, events, situations and circumstances. It is within you. Ignorance is a veil that shields your vision. It creates the confusion between hope and despair, joy and sorrow, love and hatred.

On Christmas and this festive season, pledge yourself a world of happiness.With peace and wisdom that Santa brings for everyone, gift the world more happiness; happiness which is independent, unadulterated, which springs from within the fountains of inner calm and quietness.

Lift the veil, happiness is just round the corner.

 

 

 

 

 

How to Draft a Perfect Professional Resume?

How and what words you use to write your resume´is consequential. Based on a career builder survey hiring managers spend 30 seconds or less on reviewing resumes. This means each word you use would be indicative of something and the hiring manager would interpret it according to its verbal strength and purposefulness. So how to draft a resume to make an impression on the reader?

A resume´is a document that represents you when you are not physically present. Resume´speaks for you in your absence. It is a professional statement of your education, qualification and skills to help the recruiter determine your eligibility for an interview.

How to draft a resume to make an impression on the reader? Here I would like to share a few important guidelines:

Before you write your resume ask yourself a few questions like:

a) Who am I?

b) What is my objective in life?

c)What is my professional calling?

d)Why did I choose a particular stream/ career?

e)What skills do I possess to support my professional goals?

f) How will my education and my skills help me to contribute to the job/job profile that I am applying for?

If you are able to answer these questions satisfactorily then you will be able to carve a true first impression for yourself.  Having stated this, we would now focus on how to draft a great killer resume´?

Here we discuss the secret of drafting a perfect professional resume:

  • Choose an easy and attractive layout– keep it simple and easy to read. Do not use multiple colours and font types. The best idea is to keep your document in black and white and use professionally accepted fonts like Ariel, Garamond, Georgia, Calibri  or Helvetica which are preferred by most professionals. What really matters is that the font should be easy to read at a glance. Keep your font size at between 10 and 12 point depending on the type of font you choose.
  • Margins and Spaces: Keep margins to 1/2 or 1 inch on all sides of the page. Leave reasonable white spaces between your content to make the document legible. Use bullet points to classify information or list points. Check for alignment and justify the document. Leave single spacing between lines. Avoid double spacing to compress your content in one or two pages. Remember resume´is a short crisp formal document.
  • Arrange the information under clearly defined headings and subheadings: Before discussing the heading and subheading it is necessary to understand that resumes´are of three types:
  1. Chronological resume´- Based on chronological order. It is good for entry-level        job seekers
  2.  Functional resume´-Based on skills and experience rather than education Suitable for mid-level or senior job seekers
  3. Combination resume´- Combination of both but it focuses more on specific skills that the applicant wants to showcase along with the chronological details and is a great way to cover gaps in your work history.

So, once you choose the right resume that is suited to your requirement , then you can start with the crucial task of arranging your details in the right sequence.

The essential elements of a resume´: Essential elements consist of the following:

  • Heading: It tells the reader about your name and contact information. It should include your address for correspondence, e-mail address and your mobile/phone number. Use slightly larger font size to differentiate this information from the rest of the document. You know this is where your hiring manager will find you.
  • Resume Summary/Objective: Brief description of why you are applying for the job and how you make a suitable candidate
  • Education/ Experience: It informs the reader of your education/experience, specialisation/nature of responsibilities/ expertise etc. This information should be presented in reverse chronological order.
  • Skills: Skills play a key role in your resume´ being selected by recruiters. The universally recognised skills are Communication, Technical/ computer literacy, team spirit, decision-making and problem-solving skills. Place only those skills on your resume which rightly project your personality and potential. Strictly avoid false, fake or incorrect information to maximise your chances of  success in your interview. Your skills should match the skills defined in the job description. Most companies today use Applicant Tracking System which enables them to match the key words i.e. your listed skills with the skills required for a particular job profile. If the skills match the key words then you stand a better chance of receiving an interview call.
  • Activities/ Interests: This category adds credibility to your words by giving the recruiter a fair idea of your proven skills. Here you should cite activities/ relevant examples of the work/experience/ interest that demonstrate your active participation and engagement in activities that highlight your skill or accomplishments. You may include participation in workshops/ conferences/ conclaves/ internship/training or any other work-related experience which you feel might add value to your credentials. If you are a fresher do include your sports/ cultural excellence and participation details.
  • Style of Writing: How and what words you use to write your resume´is consequential. Based on a career builder survey hiring managers spend 30 seconds or less on reviewing resumes. This means each word you use would be indicative of something and the hiring manager would interpret it according to its verbal strength and purposefulness. How then to use words to create a difference?

Use action words to demonstrate your skills or present your achievements. Be brief and use specific words instead of long sentences. Here is a list of some powerful words and expressions that can give you a lead in this power-play:

  1. Developed a software instead of ‘I was responsible for making a software.’
  2. Led a team of five members instead of ‘I was the team leader of a team consisting of 5 members.’
  3. Negotiated a deal instead of ‘I was successful in making negotiation with the other party.’
  4. Achieved my targets instead of ‘I was able to meet my targets.’
  5. Resolved a problem instead of ‘Applied my problem-solving skills.’
  6. Increased sales by 20% instead of ‘Succeeded in increasing the sales by 20%.’ 
  7. Motivated the team to perform better instead of ‘Was the key person in motivating the team.’
  8. Generated income instead of ‘I brought more revenue through my hard work.’

Action words are clear and specific indicators of your proven skills and accomplishments. Moreover, they speak more and occupy less space.

Avoid empty words to describe your skills, for example Hard-working, self-motivated, Go-getter etc. which fail to communicate the real essence of you potential.

Lastly, include information that is useful for the job applied for.

  • What you should not do: Do not include personal information until asked for. Double-check your resume´for word spellings and grammatical errors. Keep it short and to the point. Stay focused on your purpose. Do not commit the mistake of sending the same document for different roles/companies. Customise the resume´for specific jobs.

If you find this useful, you may follow the following links What the Recruiters Look for in an Interview : Facts Every Candidate Should Know  andPerfect Elevator Pitch to Introduce Yourself in an Interview to further increase your knowledge on interview preparation and top interview questions. Go ahead, your call letter is waiting to be delivered to your inbox. Do not forget to mail your resume’ on time.

 

 

 

Why We Need to Look Beyond the Virtual to Appreciate the Real World

A generation solely reliant on technology is trained to work with machines and live with technology. The experience of knowing, learning and feeling the real world is somewhere compromised with the virtual world created by this digital age. We chat with our own parents or siblings through social media platforms or networking sites while living under the same roof. We are quick to respond to Facebook posts and Twitters more promptly than to real people around us. We travel, dine or socialise to click more ‘Selfies’ than to spent quality time with our family or friends. Name it any place, private or public , the intruder is always present and it is none other than the technology.

My childhood was so full of adventure, I never had the slightest thought for boredom or stagnation. The world revealed itself to me in so many fascinating ways that I felt fortunate to be able to feel and experience the world around me in all its totality.

The natural surroundings in the vicinity engaged my senses and gave me opportunity to observe and recognise the phenomenon of creation. Nature taught me to appreciate the expanse and diversity of life. The changing seasons, the trees shedding leaves, the leaves regrowing on barren trees, the trees in full blossom and finally the trees being loaded with ripened sweetness, all this helped me shape my understanding of the changing patterns of life. From green to brown and brown to green, the changing colours led me to contemplate how the passage of  life is an intricately woven circle of fall and rise and rise and fall; how the old order gives space to the new and how only destruction can lead to re-creation. I was able to connect to the deeper mysteries of creation and it gave me strength to overcome the personal and professional losses.

A Christmas break or a summer vacation was a good time to bond with cousins and friends. We could choose our own toys and even engineer them too. I  vividly remember playing in  mud with the other kids in my neighbourhood and building mud houses, roads,secret tunnels and miniature models of valleys and dams. Sitting near the narrow culvert on the path near the house making small boats of paper and floating them in the open ditch or flying paper planes used to be a favourite timepass, which, I  believe most kids of that era can recollect. I am nostalgically reminded of having stayed in small tent houses in the garden inside our house premises. My father was an archaeologist and he would spent several days camping at and excavating ancient sites. So when we had vacations , he would sometimes build us small tents and we would spent summer afternoons playing inside them. I think more than the excitement that we derived from such experiences,  it was the feel of the real adventure that added value to our shaping years.

Living in an age of no internet and mobile phones, it was common practice and almost customary for kids to engage in indoor activities like card games, board games, carom etc. during the day time. So the kids either journeyed through the game of Snakes and Ladders, played chess or refined their language skills by playing word builder or scrabble. There were fewer sports academies but more open spaces that would offer free access to children for outdoor sports. Team games like cricket, hockey , football and badminton were not only a source of  entertainment and good physical  exercise but they also served as great platform for building team spirit and coordination skills.

Sometimes we would spent hours rummaging through the old bookshelf and search for some interesting read. There was a huge collection of books on a variety of subjects like art, science, poetry, drama, history, culture, Indian mythology, current affairs, wild life and other subjects. However, we were naturally drawn towards a small corner which lodged popular fiction, short stories and comic books. One of the advantages of living in an internet free world was that reading came to you as a natural option. With less distractions and fewer choices the probability of turning to books is higher as compared to present day world which is overloaded with multiple options. Though nothing against technology, but definitely in days preceding the internet revolution, life was simple, choices were restricted but there was more focus. Things were real, not virtual. There was more opportunity for developing skills and advancing intellect through routine activities. In sharp contrast to today’s  digital games  which promote more screen exposure, isolation, physical and psychological risks, the kids of the yesteryear found more solace in each other’s company. The time spent playing together nurtured bonding with family and friends, helped evolve skills like cooperation and team spirit. Activities like reading, drawing, painting, singing, music, sculpting, etc. helped polish the creative instincts and instill confidence in the children. Creative intelligence is nurtured through the interaction with the outer world and with one’s own inner universe. Social intelligence is acquired through the time spent together with friends. It equips one to understand human behaviour.

Today, when we come across the youth we know they belong to a new generation. This generation is smarter and indeed brighter than the previous one. We find more number of young leaders shouldering responsible positions, young people working as CEO’s, as corporate tycoons. Yet, we know, there is pressure mounting each day with more targets to be achieved, more clients to cater to, more business to be done to be successful. We are now more dependent on teams than on individuals. Modern work culture is inconceivable without team work. The irony is that team work is hard to find and harder to sustain. It is therefore not surprising to find more and more employers struggling hard to train their employees in team building despite conducting rigorous workshops and training programmes. Training people in team building is difficult especially when the members of a team are born out of a  highly individualistic culture. In a time when we speak of ‘Cross-cultural communication’ and ‘Globalisation‘ it is shockingto observe that self-driven, dynamic individuals fail to become reliable members of a team. The problem is not with the potential , problem lies in the lack of exposure.

A generation solely reliant on technology is trained to work with machines and live with technology. The experience of knowing, learning and feeling the real world is somewhere compromised with the virtual world created by this digital age. We chat with our own parents or siblings through social media platforms or networking sites while living under the same roof. We are quick to respond to Facebook posts and Twitters more promptly than to real people around us. We travel, dine or socialise to click more ‘Selfies‘ than to spent quality time with our family or friends. Name it any place, private or public , the intruder is always present and it is none other than the technology.  So when we meet real people don’t we need real emotions, real situations and real conversations to strike a chord.

Personal glorification, race to be supreme, desire to appear superior than the others leads to false ego which eventually creates conflict. Conflict is born out of either ego or jealousy. Ego or jelalousy both are a threat to the team and hence cause the team to be ineffective.

How to counter these threatening elements to construct the road for stronger, lasting teams? I think the trainings can be successful only if we promote a culture of seeing, feeling and experiencing the world around us. When you fight against a real human, you will receive in return real blows and injuries, real hurts and pain. This will teach either to fight better or to never fight again. This will give you a lesson which will be realistic and truthful. This battle will not have levels that are set from lowest level of difficulty to highest which you could adjust to your convenience and then claim your chosen victory.

We need honest competitions, sincere feedbacks, real conversations and genuine relations. How far and how long can we fake it?

You can be better than me or I can be better than you but if I know what makes me the person I am I will make the better of me. My limits will be pushed when I meet stricter challenges and fierce competition. My greed to stay ahead will only be further fuelled by false parameters dictating my false identity. My identity is not tied or restricted to my facebook profile or virtual reality. I have a life beyond that. We all have a life beyond that.

Experience the rustle of the leaves, smell the fragrance of the flowers, listen to the buzz of the bees , the humming of the birds, the song of the cricket, watch the gentle drops of rain drop hour by hour on the window pane,  If you can observe the astonishing variety of life and the amazing diversity of creation, you will learn to accept and appreciate the differences. Dissimilarities make us distinct, debates make us wise, but despise, contempt, hatred and jealousy steal us of our wisdom and seldom make us wise. Let us promote a culture of mutual respect and harmony. Look at the nature around you, there is so much to learn from it. Redefining the culture is the answer to building better teams.