Fringe Players

When Gaurav De rolled into work, people would get up and smile.Some sarcastic,some sorry and some genuinely happy. Gaurav De was well built,had the right curves,and the right sense of humor – or dry wit .

Ever sleepy eyed,almost sleep walking, sometimes the hidden bowler would surface to everyones amusement while he trotted down the office corridor.But no one could ever know what went on in his mind,maybe one of the reasons he always kept quiet added to everyone s curosity,armed with a sharp wit,and quick retort he would always get away from answering tricky questions.nobody doubted his intelligence or analytical capability for which there was plenty of evidence.

He had climbed up the ladder quickly and consistently.Never to contest, never to protest, just agree and execute.If there ever was a tsunami alert at work, Gaurav would be the last person to react. He would dimiss it off without batting an eyelid.

In direct contrast, Ananth Ved, came across, and note the expression came across, as a smart go getter,always action and fun were his keywords in life.He was ambitious and had a hidden american dream lurking in some corner of his heart,dormant,yet active. People loathed to work with or under him.His micromanagement was legendary.On one such occasion he even recorded the breaks a sales rep took in between calls….and observed that was the reason for his failling productvity.Ananth or popularly known as AV, was a man in a hurry.he had to do the things in half the time which others did in 10 years.His set of followers would typically celebrate even if they reached the target 20% short.Lots of noise,loud cheers and showbiz..which in his team meant always show that you are busy.!

Together, they made a pact – to mutually back scratch…or scratch back ! Their teams went berserk with creating separate identities,and creating a cultural battleground in the office.If GD represented the north AV’s team would represent south.The teams made the battles legendary,to a point where people actually created another world within their office work.While they watched the fun in the background.people fought argued,laughed and cried while they watched it like a soap opera from their couch! As time passed  more and more people enrolled into this circus and they enjoyed the drama that unfolded.

Promotions are like sex.Everyone gets it sooner or later,but people just hate waiting for it.99% would always say it is well overdue….even if they lost their virginity at age 16! It was promotion time at work and AV and GD were in the race for a senior management slot.Slowly but surely it dawned upon them that it was only one slot that was up for grabs,not two, and one of them would be still walking into the same office in the same role, with the same salary next Monday.

Tejdeep,true to his name  had a lot of fire power.He was powerful and could fire people.He was their boss.The epitome of alpha male.He had to decide whether to promote AV or GD come next Monday.The challenge was to make a decision which would keep both of them going.Even more difficult was the fact that they both were equally talented and had performance to back up their claim for a  berth in the senior management.the number of follwers that one comanded was important for the business continuity.So upsetting 50% of that crowd might go against the productivity of the business.

The decision was made.AV got promoted and got a raise.GD just got a raise.

Life moved on.given the image GD had created for himself,cool-man-in-control- no-reaction kinds made sure he never spilled the beans as to what had happened in the boardroom on Friday night.he looked as sleepy as ever, and gave a congratulatory speech while announcing it to the organization.People talked about it on many coffee breaks in the comming days, but life moved on.GD’s followers, were disillusioned, as they’d believed in his style of working and philosphy very strongly.They had comitted their careers to a leader who could not give them a sense of direction.GD was as quiet as ever…and when one of the more emotional followers asked him directly he said -there are fringe players,and then there are good players.

Fringe players will always stay with the organization,while good players will leave them.

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