Oh, some of my people told me that this sound condescending. Which it may. And if it does, I apologize. But the message is an important one to be sent around!
So I wrote a 2500-word email on how we need to be reliable as knowledge-workers and a collective and a company and all that. I called it "Winter is Coming" and I meant to say that the way the world around us is moving, most knowledge workers would find it tough to find work in an environment when purses get tightened, costs plummet and more and more people join the workforce.
But in the morning while I was editing it, the email disappeared.
And there went my angst with it.
I think it was good that it disappeared - I had written nasty things in it.
Well, that email was triggered by three separate instances of people telling me that people I promote (you guys, your ideas, and your companies) are NOT reliable at all.
Let that sink in.
Not reliable at all.
I was told that we promise the world and then we don't deliver. Heck, chuck the delivery, we don't even call back. We go radio silent for days. Clients keep chasing us but we don't take their calls, we don't respond to their messages while we are active on twitter and all that.
Guys, everyone can see that you have time for chilling but no time for work.
And 2 of those 3 told me that they are taking their work elsewhere. We may not be paid a lot by these people - we are in the build phase of our lives - but each interaction, each opportunity is worth a lot! We can't afford to lose opportunities.
Boys and girls, I am ok with sub-standard work but I am not ok with not being reliable. And of course, sub-standard work is not cool. We must strive to do great work. More on this someday later.
So, as someone who has partnered with you (or hopes to partner with you soon), I can not have this.
I will not tolerate that we are not reliable.
If we cant deliver a certain thing, we MUST say so.
In as many words.
If we cant deliver, let's apologize and not keep them guessing.
It's ok to say no. But it's not ok to not deliver.
In the business we are in, reliability is THE most important thing ever. If we cant be reliable, we have no rights to be in the business. In fact, we will be out of business before we know it. The world is run by people that are reliable. You could be the most brilliant person ever but if you are not reliable, you are nothing. I learned the lesson the hard way. Till a few months ago I was loose with what I said. But I am changing and improving. And can I request you to please improve as well, please?
Each of you is better than me.
And I am super proud of what you do and super grateful that I know you and work with you.
But I am NOT ok with this thing about being unreliable.
This may be a tiny thing for you - for the world, it is LARGE.
Think of the times when you have promised things and not delivered. Swap yourself with the person you promised things to. Now, if someone tells you that something will be done by a certain time and then they don't do it, how do you feel? That is how the world feels when you don't call them back or do as promised.
Not pointing fingers at any one person in particular. Just want to make sure you know who we are. Reliable. Trustworthy. Accountable. People that believe in Zubaan Ki Keemat.
Ok enough. Have to go. That's the lesson for the day. I get so riled up with this! Imagine if I can write these 500 words dripping with exasperation, imagine the effort I had put in for that 2000-word essay! May I will re-write that 2000-word essay. But for the time being, the word reliable has to be tattooed on our foreheads. Please :D
Love you guys!
PS: Not every one of you is unreliable. But I want to reinforce this as the number 1 thing that we stand for.
PPS: Sending this to some people that I don't work with right now but am hoping to work with, in the near future. Please tolerate this outburst :)