Saturday, September 17, 2005

Dilbert's Universe

Last week I had the experience of being in a Dilbert's Universe. Some big shot of our company had arrived here and we had a big gathering of around 1200 or so employees in a cramped place to listen to his gibberish. In fact people were flown in from various offices in the country to attend this meeting.

To be frank, the entire programme seemed to be a fiasco. Not to mention the boring speech by the big shot, and the useless Q & A session, the food arrangement was damn frustrating. Add to that the hunger and impatience of employees and there was a hell lot of 'hungama' for food. I guess the quality of food was OK, but kept on thinking that it could have been better, especially during such a mega event.

The transportation arrangements were nothing sort of spectacular. Putting 70-80 employees (not general staff, but software engineers, managers etc.) in a cramped bus (which has a capacity of not more than 55) was a nice idea. Outside the bus it was raining heavily so we couldn't open glass windows to let the air in. Luckily I had a seat, so I did not have that much trouble. To top it all, the traffic of Delhi was worse. The journey which would have taken around 45 mins took almost something like an hour and 40 minutes.

I don't know the cost of entire arrangement, but I guess it would have been hefty, considering that 50 or so employees had been flown from Bangalore to Delhi for the purpose and that the event took place in a big hotel (I don't know how many stars it had, but I am pretty sure it wasn't a 5-star). But the hidden cost of 8000 man hours, which were wasted like anything, is staggering. I don't know how much that cost is (ask some job consultant/analyst for that).

If you think that this was enough to give you a picture of Dilbert's Paradise, then perhaps you have underestimated. 2-3 days later there was a "sorry-and-thank-you" mail from the HR people (remember the HR in Dilbert strips?) mentioning that they received some feedback and were sorry for the transportation arrangements. They ensured us that such issues will be handled with proper care in future events of this nature. Wow!! That's so nice of you. I will not be there to receive the above mentioned proper care.


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