Saturday, 19 September 2015

Marketing Trainee Job

Life was different after I passed out of college. Completed Engineering without a job, neither scored good enough marks, and on top of that the market was going through some kind of recession. The initial couple of weeks was fine, had a great time at home. But soon life turned boring, depressing, I was anxious about the future. My dear friend, my hostel buddy Rajat used to stay a few kms from our place. Well, my parents used to live in a rented house at Ganeshguri, a place in Guwahati. Rajat’s house was in Lal Ganesh. Quite often I and Rajat used to meet in the evening near the famous Ganesh temple, smoked a couple of cigarettes, talked about our hostel days, and also talked about our uncertain future.

Later, some of my college buddies shifted to a rented house nearby Ganesh temple. They were preparing for Gate/MBA. I visited them frequently, spent hours there. Once again life turned awesome, just like the hostel days. But my friends had some plans, they were preparing hard. I was simply aimless, without any idea what to do. Being a Computer Science graduate I thought of going to Bangalore, the IT city. But some of my very close Mechanical/Chemical buddies already moved to Delhi. They called me to come. They said Delhi is a beautiful city to live. Also, there are some Top MBA Colleges in Delhi. Rajat decided to join them and booked his ticket. I was confused. Soon, some more friends decided to go to Delhi. Most of them wanted to prepare either for Gate or for MBA. I didn’t have any such plan though, I simply wanted to find a job and work. Ultimately I also booked my ticket to Delhi.

We still had couple of months time before we left for Delhi. In the meanwhile we kept looking for opportunities in Guwahati. One day we came across a Newspaper job advertisement for freshers. It was marketing trainee job. Salary was okay, good enough for us, the fatichars. Rajat was pretty much interested for the job. He wanted to do MBA and some marketing trainee exposure could be handy for him. Rajat came to my house in the morning. In his formal wear Rajat looked professional. He also had a piece of Tie with him, but he was confused whether to wear it or not. He kept it in his pocket, said he would use it according to the situation.

There were a few more candidates, waiting for their turn. Someone called me and Rajat, asked us to go inside. The interviewer looked smart.

"So you both are from same college"

We had a little bit of chit-chat, and then the interviewer asked what we want to do in life. Rajat replied that he would like to do MBA after gaining one or two years of work experience.

"In MBA you will learn only theory, but here you will learn practical, no theory, only practical,” the interviewer guy advised us. Without wasting another minute he called one of his junior and said “you guys go with him, he is your team lead. Today entire day you learn the basic field work. We will talk once you return in the evening"

I was confused, "what is field work? Is our team lead going to take us to a factory?"

Our team lead was a very friendly guy. "Today you guys simply notice how I work, just observe everything and try to understand the complexities," he briefed us.

We entered a city bus.

"Where are we going sir?" I asked.

"Don’t worry, you will get to know everything," he replied.

We got down at a familiar place and followed our team lead. All of a sudden he knocked a door. A lady, not very friendly looking one, opened the door.

"Sister, we have some wonderful home utility products. If you like we could show you and explain"

The aunty got furious, she said something rude and closed the door in anger.

I and Rajat looked at each other. We both were confused and wondered what if we encounter some known person, some of our college mates stayed at that place. Our team lead was very professional, he knocked a few more doors, but everywhere the response was more or less the same. Finally at one house the owner purchased some of the products. “No wonder, sales is the most difficult/essential part of any business. I was quite impressed with my team lead, the way he used to speak to clients, never got frustrated if someone treated him rudely.

But neither I nor Rajat was prepared for the job yet. We decided to back off. Our team lead was upset. He took us to a nearby tea stall. He lighted a cigarette and offered us as well.

“I have many friends who have done their graduations long back; BSC, BCOM, BA, some even completed their MA and are still jobless. I’m not a graduate, but I earn well enough. Initially I was ashamed of doing door to door sales, but now I got used to it. Actually, sales job is like this only,” our team lead motivated us while slurping his tea, and then he took a gentle drag on his cigarette and exhaled.

We understood each and every word he said but we were not mentally prepared for the job. We shook hands. Our team lead wished us good luck.

"After completing high school, every candidate start searching for a good college. The search continues even after completing graduation. Well, searching good colleges has always been a difficult job. Instead of seeking for colleges here and there what if we have website which help us to find a perfect college. Yes College Dunia does the same. College Dunia is a search engine that allow us to browse various colleges in different streams. College dunia is a college searching engine where one can literally find tons of colleges within few clicks. Now we don’t need to visit colleges to get its details. You can just browse college dunia and can find every information regarding colleges, exams, results and many more."

Grab a copy of my debut book Story of Tublu from Amazon or Flipkart. It is a Contemporary Fiction novel, published by LiFi Publications Pvt Ltd. The book has its share of drama, that entertains; humor, that makes one reminisce; love, friendship and emotions that defines the amazing journey that is, life.

Sunday, 13 September 2015

Daily Bus Pass

          It was the beginning of year 2004 when I arrived in Bangalore for the first time to start a career, to earn my bread. That was the time when market was reviving from recession, and  Even we freshers, also started to get interview calls. Bangalore is the most wonderful city to live in India, but for someone struggling to get a job, for people with limited pocket size, the city is going to give you some hard time. Everything is expensive out here, including the basic human needs Roti, Kapda Aur Makaan(Food, clothing, and shelter). Actually, I was always confused why clothing is included in the list. Of course clothing is important, one cannot roam around naked in the street. But everyone could afford to cover their body if they don’t consider fashion as part of their life. One can wear the same piece of cloth everyday, wash it before going to sleep and then wear the same in morning. What I mean to say is clothing cannot be compared to either food or place of shelter. The other two needs are far bigger. The one more thing which can be compared to food and shelter is travel.

Travelling is a pain in cities like Bangalore, with overcrowded buses, sky high auto fares. It’s a everyday struggle for people to reach office on time. Also, travelling consumes a major part of our salary. But thanks to BMTC for giving us the option of Daily/Monthly bus pass. During our job hunt days when I and my friends had to travel from one corner of Bangalore to another for attending interviews, we used to take 25 rupees Daily Bus pass, which allowed us limitless travel throughout the day.

          Soon I started to work and just like my friends, even my pocket got sizable, and turned into a little better shape. I was among the first to get promoted from bachelorhood, might be because of some personal reasons. Enjoying a bachelor life and living a married life is a totally different game altogether; one got to be responsible for the later. My wife Anjali, also struggled to start her career in Bangalore. Even though it was challenging, we lived within tight budget, but those were happy days, very memorable. We used to live in a small house, pretty close to the place where I used to stay earlier with my friends. My earlier housemate friends continued to stay at the same old house. Staying nearby had one advantage, I never missed  the weekend parties together with my buddies. Those days I was working with HP. I remember, just a couple of months after our marriage I joined a new project where I had to work during the US working hours for few months. I used to go office by 8:30 pm, worked till 5:30 in the morning and returned home by 6:30 am. 

My wife Anjali recently completed her BAMS and joined a Hospital far away from home, as a duty Doctor.  During the weekdays Anjali and I stayed together just for a couple of hours. In the morning when I returned from office, Anjali would get ready for work. She had to travel a long way, had to change three buses. We used to have breakfast together and then she would left. Well, in the morning Anjali used to take a Daily Bus Pass. After she returned in the evening I would collect the same pass from her and used it; I also had to change two buses to reach office. Sometimes she was late, but I kept waiting for her at the nearby bus stop. As soon as she stepped down the bus, I would approach her. We both would look at each other and smile; I would her ask for the bus pass and say "Bye, see you in the morning". After I reached my destination I always used to give the same Daily Bus Pass to some needy person. I usually got someone or the other at the bus stand.

A decade later

          Bangalore has changed a lot. The auto fares during my early Bangalore days can to compared to bus fare these days. Somehow both I and Anjali lost the practice of travelling by bus. Nowadays, there are plenty of luxurious but expensive buses running around the city. This weekend I had to go a long way for some work. I thought to take a bus rather than driving alone that long. I boarded a Volvo AC bus. The conductor suggested me to take a Daily Bus Pass. The guy briefed me with his calculation that I would benefit by taking the pass. Without thinking much I purchased it in 140 rupees. The guy asked very politely for my ID proof. I tried to remember when the last time I bought a pass like that. The situation managed to evoke nostalgia.

While returning I used the same pass, but this time the conductor asked for my ID proof in a slightly rude manner. He started to argue. It took me a minute to realize that I displayed him a different ID from the one I used earlier, in order to purchase the Pass. So BMTC has become quite strict these days as far as the Daily Bus Pass is concerned.

Grab a copy of my debut book Story of Tublu from Amazon or Flipkart. It is a Contemporary Fiction novel, published by LiFi Publications Pvt Ltd. The book has its share of drama, that entertains; humor, that makes one reminisce; love, friendship and emotions that defines the amazing journey that is, life.
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