On the unfortunate
date of 11th September 2001, I went
for my first interview. My interrogator was the
Vice President (Human Resources) for The Software
Company. His name was Mr.P.C.Menon. He appeared
to be a smart man, until, that is, he started to
take my interview, which went something like this:
PCM: So, Gargi,
what have you done?
divining he meant my degree and not what I had
done in life): I have done my engineering in
PCM: I see. So,
is that a Bachelors degree in Computer
Me: No, sir. It
is a computer engineering degree.
fogged): So, thats what - a Masters
degree in Computer Applications?
throbbing feverishly): No, sir, it is a Bachelors
degree in computer engineering i.e. B.E.Computers.
finally!): Ah, youre a B.E. Ok, ok, thats
to think a bit) So, Gargi, how would you rate
yourself on a scale of one to ten?
truthful): Sir, maybe about four or five. I have
learnt a lot in college but I have yet to apply
it to work in the IT industry.
Thats very honest! I appreciate that.
Me: Thank you,
I trust the sample
given above suitably illustrates the tone of our
fascinating conversation. My interview lasted for
an hour, during which time I said I dont
know to every alternate question put to me.
Needless to say I bagged the job with ease, and
the next morning, I reported for my first day in
Within a fortnight
I found out that my colleagues had cleverly
labelled Mr.P.C.Menon as Perpetually
Confused Menon in keeping with his air of
eternal bewilderment. That the nickname was more
than justified was proven to me a second time
One fine day, he
called me to his office, and handing me The
Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, he
said, Gargi, this is an excellent book for
self-improvement. There are three extremely
important things mentioned in it. They are
And for the next
twenty minutes he struggled to remember what he
was going to say. I watched him patiently, as he
hemmed and hawed and massaged his forehead with
two fingers in an attempt to aid recollection.
When he finally decided that his memory cells had
failed him, he let me go, saying that I should
check it up in the book.
six months of training at The Software Company, I
left it to pursue greener pastures. When I met
PCM for the last time, I was surprised to find
that he was quite sentimental. Usually he was
stern, but on this occasion he shed his
managerial decorum and favoured me with these
parting words of encouragement:
So, you have
decided to depart from us...Im sure,
wherever you go, you will find the experience you
have gained in these six months to be absolutely un-valuable!
argue with that!