Saturday, September 29, 2007

Be there when it really matters!

As a Leader/Manager you are expected to lead from the front. And it’s very much true about your arrival or departure time in the office. One can afford slip ups during normal working days. But if you and your team have planned to work on an off day then IT’S ABSOLUTELY vital that you are there with your team. Your team will forgive you for occasional late arrivals and early departures but even the most loyal team will not forgive you if you come late or go early on off days working in the office. Trust me it will put your team off. They will feel like they have been betrayed even though they don’t discuss this publicly or among their peers but deep inside their hearts and minds it will stay like a bomb waiting for the right conditions to explode.

Take care...!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Software Piracy…. It’s all about loosing the worth

Software piracy is very much at the center stage when you visit your nearest CD shop. You can find almost any software by just only spending 50 to 100 rupees. Although the original cost of the software is in thousands, one can get hold of that software in a price where you can only imagine how to CD seller is making profit (considering the cost of material, shipping, shop rent, etc...). But it’s a fact that the software piracy is on the rise and I am not sure wheather the government can take any steps to stop this. Although there have been some raids on shops but still it is yet to put a slight dent on this piracy monster.

There are a lot of disadvantages which have been discussed on different forums but here I would like to mention a slightly an overlooked aspect i.e. you loose the worth of the software when you are using a pirated version. How?

Just do a simple cost and benefit analysis. E.g. If you have purchased a software say MS Office for only Rs. 50 then you only expect (or put some extra effort) to get a return of Rs. 100 or 200 where in fact the software can give you more then that.

This not only happens to individuals but to the companies as well. Even if your company is using is licensed copy the employee using the software still thinks that the software is worth Rs. 50 or 100.

So for me it’s about losing the worth of that software on which the software company has spent millions.

Take care....!

Friday, September 7, 2007

Outsourcing……. Are your customers with you?

Outsourcing has been there since the old days where people used labour from countries with low average income and it worked for them.

According to Wikipedia:
“Outsourcing became part of the business lexicon during the 1980s and refers to the delegation of non-core operations from internal production to an external entity specializing in the management of that operation.”

Nowadays there is a boom in the outsourcing industry and it has become a fashion statement that whenever you are talking about cost saving then you should be considering outsourcing in one way or the other. The apparent advantages are cheap labour, low operational cost, etc…

In terms of the balanced scorecard perspective, outsourcing is now spanning all the four major focus areas Including the financial, customer, business processes and training & development. The impact on these areas has been different. E.g. on the business process and training & development side the impact of outsourcing is more significant as compared to the customer side.

Although there has been call centres operating in the sub-continent and other countries but companies using these facilities are reluctant to tell their customers that the person answering their call is some thousands miles away from them. One reason can be that a common citizen doesn’t want to share his/her information with a person from another country thus there is an implicit barrier already in place while outsourcing customer service operations.

On part of the internal customers, the feeling for outsourcing is mixed. It seems that when the internal customers are taken on board while planning for outsourcing they are more satisfied and they feel more involved in outsourcing. This action can minimize the resistance which is offered by the employees. Even if the resistance is not apparent, in general the employees still don’t like outsourcing.

So it is important to take your customers on board because if customers (either internal or external) see an advantage for themselves there will be more chances of making outsourcing a success.

Happy outsourcing…..!