Posts Tagged ‘Bosses’

They are to be found in all spheres of life. They have perfected the art of boosting the sagging morale and flaccid ego of their superiors, thereby securing better perks and intangible benefits for themselves. Due to close proximity to their bosses – whether perceived or real – they end up being king makers.

Smart bosses easily figure out how to remain at an arm’s length from them. The tricks they use to steer clear of yes-men: a discouraging body language, asking for hard evidence for all the charges being levied against someone who is absent and generally berating them on select occasions in public.

(Excerpt from my book ‘Surviving in the Corporate Jungle’, the English version of which was released recently. Here is a video clip which captures the journey of the book so far:



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Tired of time-worn designations? Try these:

·         Chief Worrying Officer: Normally, the Chief Financial Officer who is worried sick about legal compliance in all areas of business.

·         Chief Listening Officer: A Vice President – Human Resources who is always ready with a bucket and a towel to help employees facing emotional distress.

·         Chief Results Officer: The Chief Executive Officer who believes that ends justify all means.

·         Chief Dreams Officer: The Research & Development head who keeps dreaming of new products and businesses.

·         Chief Conscience Keeper: Keeps a strict eye on fraudulent behaviour anywhere in the organization.

Here are some job labels which appear to be on the horizon:

·         Chief Risk Officer: Ensures corporate governance criteria are met and regulatory frameworks respected.

·         Chief Counselling Officer: A legal eagle who can vet agreements of all sizes and shapes and counsel on a legally safe route to take.

·         Chief Data Crunchers: With big data coming up in a big way, the day is not far off when specialists in data management would be seen occupying corner suites in offices.

·       Chief Merchandising Officers: With organized retail picking up, professionals with a feel of the customers’ pulse move up the organizational hierarchy.

(Excerpt from my book ‘Surviving in the Corporate Jungle’, the English version of which was released recently. The Portuguese version of the excerpt follows.)


Cansado dos títulos muito batidos? Experimente estes:

Diretor de Preocupações: normalmente, o Diretor Financeiro, que está preocupado com a conformidade legal em todas as áreas de negócio.

Diretor Ombro Amigo: um Vice-Presidente de Recursos Humanos sempre pronto com um balde e uma toalha para ajudar os funcionários em sofrimento emocional.

• Diretor-Geral que acredita: que os fins justificam todos os meios.

Diretor de Sonhos: um Responsável por Investigação & Desenvolvimento que está sempre a sonhar com novos produtos e negócios.

Guardião da Consciência: está sempre de olho nos comportamentos fraudulentos onde quer que possam ocorrer na organização.

E eis alguns novos cargos que parecem estar no horizonte:

Diretor de Riscos: assegura que os critérios de gestão são cumpridos e os quadros regulamentares são respeitados.

Diretor de Aconselhamento Jurídico: um ás em direito com poderes para vetar todo o tipo de acordos e dar conselhos sobre os caminhos a seguir que sejam juridicamente seguros.

Diretor de Tratamento de Dados: com cada vez mais dados à disposição das empresas, não estará longe o dia em que os especialistas em tratamento de dados irão ocupar os melhores gabinetes do escritório.

Diretores de Merchandising: à medida que a distribuição organizada ganha terreno, os profissionais capazes de sentir o pulso dos consumidores vão subindo na hierarquia das empresas.

(This is how you can lay your hands on the Portuguese version of the book, launched in Portugal during March, 2016.)

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Those of you who are fond of cats would perhaps be able to draw a parallel between the behavioral traits of the bosses they deal with at their place of work and the feline creatures whose company they cherish at home.

Here are some of the roles which appear to be common between the two species.cat 4


Both expect to be treated like royalty. The way they conduct themselves is nothing short of regal. They lord over whatever they survey. They can show off annoyance at being interrupted – while devouring a slice of fish as well as while delivering a sermon on office manners.

Never would they show appreciation for what you do. The only time you find them cuddling up close and purring is when they need a tacit assurance of your support towards an assured delivery against a juicy target set by the top dog.

Try and meet them to complain about a missed promotion. They are apt to put on a deadpan expression and look at you with glassy eyes. When presented with a request which they have decided to decline, they could simply mumble a ´let us see´and walk off to attend an all too important meeting with a top government honcho.

Like cats, bosses are also acrobats, athletes and entertainers – all rolled into one. Great artists to learn from any day.


They are silent but steadfast companions. They are wont to growl at any other member of the tribe that dare threaten any of the team members.

In tough times, they rally around with a warmth and gentleness which would make you want to get back at resolving the crisis with renewed vigor and zeal.

They often provide a work environment which offers the perfect balance between solitude and companionship – two of the many features loved by cats.

Detached Souls

You may enjoy an excellent rapport with them. You might have even got used to hanging on to their coat tails or skirts as they clawed, purred and hissed their way up in the hierarchy. Beware. Do not take them for granted. One fine morning, they could spring a surprise and announce their plans to switch over to another family/company.

As a species, they have perfected the art of remaining detached.


Just as all new items being brought into a home must undergo a mandatory sniff test, all those joining the company must undergo a compulsory briefing by those who claim to be effective managers.

All lazy, uncooperative and under-performing rats who hide in their comfort zones must be hunted down and asked to either shape up or be ready to get shipped out (read devoured).

Any cat-and-mouse game being played within the team must be brought to their notice. Romantic escapades of all kinds must be investigated in full and acted upon firmly without fear or favor.

All movements of the top dog and his cabinet of puppies must be monitored at all times.


They lower your blood pressure while keeping you on your toes. Come to them depressed and they would fuss over you so charmingly that you could waltz out of their cabin doing a samba.

All those applying for sick leave have to necessarily listen to the simple home remedies the manager has on offer.

Need advice on the joys of procreation? They have a simple solution to share. A bunch of kids sick at home? Learn from them the art of tele-medicine. You can always lick your cubs if and when you eventually get home.

Lone Crusaders

They are quite lonely at times.

Their sense of insecurity is invariably higher at the start as also at the tail end of the day. Getting back to them in advance on all pending critical assignments for the day reduces their blood pressure. It brings some cheer into their lives which are often full of struggles to survive in the corporate jungle.

If you stroke their backs first thing in the morning and last thing in the evening, they come to admire and respect you.

Private Birds

Their need for privacy is paramount.

You would often find them vanishing from the public spaces. The feline ones would do so either when they wish to relieve themselves or when bringing a fresh bevy of beauties into this world. The office ones would either be discussing strategic matters with their own bosses or simply working on a top-secret but otherwise widely known downsizing plan.

Handling Catty Bosses

How do you handle bosses who are excessively catty?

If you are a simpleton, you could choose to behave like a devoted dog. This works out fine as long as you have a unique skill which the boss does not possess. So, you avoid getting treated like a doormat.

If you happen to be a born diplomat, you could develop an underground channel of communication to the boss´ boss.

You could also consider switching over to another rat hole. However, there is never a guarantee you would not have to deal with a cattier boss in the new outfit!

Do you think there are other common traits between bosses and cats? Or, would you like to share your own recipe for handling a catty boss? Go ahead. Post a comment.

(Image courtesy Tumblr)

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90th birthdayA mighty leader of men, creator of institutions smart,

Demanding perfection and results, yet compassionate at heart.


Praising us in public, impeccable results you always demanded,

When we goofed up, in privacy you ensured we were reprimanded.


The inimitable spring in your stride came from the sole,

The sprightly attitude to problem solving emanated from your soul.


Oh, what a transformation you have witnessed in these 90 years,

Wars, acts of terror and news of genocides has reached your ears.


You may miss fountain pens, LP records and telegrams,

Not to forget a cell-and-internet-free placid life, noisy cars and trams.


You have witnessed a man landing on the moon, a space mission to Mars,

Time to network with the world but not connect with whom we call ours.


You have seen shrinking TV sets and shorter global hauls,

Several generations passing by, sprouting glitzy malls and highway tolls.


Time sits lightly on your mind and has certainly made you more wise,

We can still lean on your strong shoulders, despite challenges that arise.


You continue to be young at heart, in you inspiration we find, 

As always, your advice is practical, objective, frank and kind.


You are just short of ten to hit a century, surely a result of your positivity,

We all salute you, eager to learn more secrets of your longivity.

(In honor of a leading personality of the Indian Footwear Industry who turned 90 recently!)

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