A very dear friend of mine, working in a top 10 MNC Agency wrote this in, as a response to Recession and Advertising. He requested to remain anonymous, and we shall respect that.
THE RECESSION EFFECT
When small men cast tall shadows, the Sun is about to set – Japanese proverb
So the recession is here. Much has been written, discussed and ‘felt’ of the recession here in India. And I am not going to discuss the ‘bigger picture’ or about the ‘way ahead’ or anything of that sort. It’s much too intellectual for my understanding. I know that being in the corporate world we can’t be and should not be as uninterested as we at times are about the way things are in the economic world. I know however much an ‘ostrich syndrome’ we might have about things like these, we cannot escape it. The results of recession are there for all to see.
Recession is a great learning experience. And I don’t mean economically. It is a time to learn about the human psyche in different levels. You have the Indian agencies jumping the gun and laying off people and freezing the hiring, but that’s the macro level picture. What I find interesting is seeing the micro level behavioral changes of agencies and its people in times like these. It brings out the best, or should we say the worst of them. Thanks to recession, I got to hear and experience instances or anecdotes which range from funny to bizarre. But they all have one thing in common, that is, they demonstrate, what small people we are surrounded with. Small people, who in times like these, draw out their cloaked daggers. Small people, who give veiled threats to others. Sample this, “If you guys can’t do it in time, then I’ll talk to the other team”. Bravo my friend! You just demonstrated how good you can be at what you do.
And then there are people who run the agency, the ones that make rules and slap on their employees. They apply newer strategies, newer rules to combat recession. So what do you have? First thing first. No increment. And then you have rules and conditions which are a marvel. If you work on a weekend, you have to fend for yourself, no cabs, no food, and no nothing. And the humiliation just doesn’t end there. You get ‘official’ emails and interrogative phone calls, asking why were you working on a weekend and depleting office resources. Well sir, I was working on getting a new business so that you and I keep earning our salaries. And yeah, thanks for making me feel like a petty criminal.
Well, the list of petty things that recession has spawned is endless. I hope that some of you, who’ll read this, will have their own anecdotes to share. And I hope you will.