Thursday, March 12, 2015

Management Lessons from Jokes

I was reading those old forward jokes that once used to be on our emails and have now found their way to BBM and whatsapp and other instant messaging platforms. Generally that's the way for me to unwind myself before heading to sleep. But today two of the forwards actually ignited my thoughts about the embedded Management Lessons in them. Incidentally both of them are related to Microsoft.

The first joke is about the incident where Microsoft CFO was conducting an interview for a junior position and as he was impressed with this guy who was a fresh graduate, he asked him "do you have an email where we can contact you?" The guy was puzzled and looked back asking "what is that? I do have a mailing address but don't know nothing about email address!!" Microsoft CFO looked at him and said "well then you don't exist for us. Sorry, but contact us the day you have an email address." The young guy leaves and moves out thinking what to do to earn the livelihood. He looks at his pocket and finds $50. He sits in a park and identifies that if he spent those $50 on food he wood be out of money in 4 days. Just at that time he sees a vendor selling Popsicle. He evaluates the idea and decides to use $10 for his food and rest $40 to buy some meat & vegetables that he can sell from door to door. As he does that, he makes a profit of $15. So the next day he starts with $55 and again with the same split and sales he makes a profit of $20. Soon he buys a bike and that way he could carry more vegetables and cover More distance. The efforts were yielding results for him and he ended up owning a chain of stores with door to door selling and free home delivery concepts. With success he decided to have an IPO and his company got listed on NYSE. He became one of the "Most talked about CEOs who were self made entrepreneurs too." He then bumps into the same old Microsoft CFO who was impressed with this guys down to earth attitude and asked him if he had an email ID?  The guy simply replies "If I would have had an email address, I would have been working for Microsoft!!!"

The management lesson as hidden in this story is about being able to utilize absence of something as an opportunity to excel without it. There is no scope for ruing the lost chances. Its about doing what you do with determination along side the will to succeed. Lack of not having something is not actually a handicap rather is a big opportunity for you to work on your strength areas!!!

The second joke is about an incident where Microsoft organized a Walk-in from all over the world to select the best candidate to nurture as future CEO.  So there were thousands of candidates who flocked in.  At the venue, the Microsoft HR head walks in and says "Those who do not have Engineering and Management Background may please leave" and almost 60% of the candidates left. Then walked in the CFO and said "Those who do not understand Expense Statement, Balance Sheet and P&L may please leave." Another 50% left.  There was this candidate who was thinking all the time, "Though I don't know anything, what the hell, I would see what happens next".  At the end of all the elimination rounds, Microsoft CEO walks in and says, "Those who don't understand and can't converse in Swahili may please leave" and there was this guy and another guy left.  They were then told to speak to each other in Swahili and the first one asks the second one - "Kit kas sein" and the Second one replies "Faridabad".

In this case the lesson that we get is never leave the competition just because you think you don't qualify.  It is not you who should be quitting.  You must ensure that you stay in the competition and you might be the winner.  Just walking out midway is not the right thing, walking till the end is!!!

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