05 February 2009

What a week!

This has definitely been a memorable week in my career as well as my life! The HR department in my company had organized an HR week for last 4 days in my office. There were several sessions by internal as well as external speakers. The sessions ranged from technical leadership to women empowerment & soft skill development. There was a free health check drive going on. There were stalls put up by various branches of HR - viz. Corporate HR, Achievers stall, Talent Acquisition(aka Recruitment) and Competency development & Performance Management. All the stalls explained in detail the working of that department, the different policies that exist in the organization, some quizzes and games etc. In addition to all these, we also had DJ music playing in our cafeteria, and games such as 1-minute games, relay races and tug-of-war.

The participation in all of these was tremendous. After a rather dismal beginning to this year due to recession, this event brought in much-needed enthusiasm and cheer to everyone right from the office boys right upto senior management. It felt good to be away from our computer screens and fill our lungs with the refreshing air on our terrace cafeteria. Even the elevators had hilarious cartoons pasted on the walls - so much so that where people hung their heads in the elevator to avoid talking about the plunging stock prices and on-going lay offs before, now they had something novel to discuss on their way up or down.

Some of the sessions were truly awe-inspiring and thought-provoking. "Innovative Thinking" by Dr. Mashelkar, who was former Director General of CSIR, former Director of NCL, is foreign Associate for National Academy of Sciences and holds 27 Ph.D.s from various prestigious institutions, was a truly motivational session. That such a senior and celebrated person chose to spend time with us itself was humbling enough. That he spoke to us as if we were of his league was extremely touching. Another session on technical leadership by Dr. Anupam Saraph, who is the CIO of Pune was very informative. It was heartening to know what all is being planned to better the life of Puneites through the use of technology. Then there was another moving session by renowned Gynaecologist and Obstretician - Dr. Shinde, on Women's Empowerment in today's times. The Stress management session was well-attended and much-required. Also, the soft skill session on "Power through Conversations" by head of our learning department - Dr. Balaji was an eye-opener. He taught how just by holding the right kind of conversations with others or ourselves, we can change the course of our life to what we want.

All in all it was a great initiative, well-executed and the sheer efforts and thought that went into it is well-appreciated! It is an experience all of us would carry with us for a very long time.

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