The different guy – HR issues

Moutushi Ghoshdeysarkar

It was my first day in a spacious office with a not so huge staff. One of my present colleague also happened to be my ex colleague, quite senior though. He took me around and after a quick round of introduction I settled with a kappa of coffee at what was supposed to be my work space. First day, so not really loaded, I had ample time to assume, presume, judge and misjudge the people around me.

We take minutes to form an opinion and kind of stick to them and sometimes pass on the opinion to others, misguiding their thoughts. I found one particular guy very different. He sat hunched over his computer looking at the screen intently through his thick glasses. I remembered he could not manage to smile when introduced. At lunch he ate alone at his desk. During the entire day he got up only twice. Once possibly to relieve himself and once he brought back a cup with him.

Subsequently I found myself observing this loner. Years later when we were choosing our discipline, one of my MBA prof told me I was a natural at human psychology and should definitely take up HR, but the greed of challenging opportunities got the better of me.

Back then, the more I observed the different guy the more I felt that it is not his natural disposition but a veil to mask a disgruntlement.

This gentleman as I found later was good at his work and had never voiced any discontent. But one fine day he left. The management was puzzled and the exit interview did not spring up any surprises. Clueless the management had to lose an asset not in lieu of a huge monetary benefit which was the common presumption going around, but as I later learned from spying after my subject, only for a befitting work.

Often a company loses its valuable employees owning to the lack of observation and understanding. One rule cannot govern all bodies. One treat cannot satisfy all. It is crucial for the management to understand that employees are the real assets of a company and periodic generalized efforts will not work for all of them. Monitoring and customizing efforts is called for, at least for the ones who are worthy.

Now this ‘different guy’ was in search of a specific kind of job, having worked in the industry for a while he now wished to work in a niche area and thus he had moved to this organization in the first place; but when he found that he had been wronged with false promises he felt betrayed and eventually left.

There are different needs. It depends on many factors like the age, gender, ethnicity, family background and majorly his/her personality – the man or woman he/she is. As we grow we discover ourselves, and interestingly we keep knowing the inner self more and more as we age. Our wants and desires change with time and situation. The situation could be as diverse a factor as ‘marital status’ or ‘growing kids’ to ‘have arrived in life’ or ‘spiritual transcendence’. Humans are assets if nurtured in a conducive environment or else they turn into liabilities. Our ‘different guy’ was fortunately ‘understood’ by his new employers and thus flourished, rose through ranks and in turn brought substantial benefits to the organization.