By | Nathan SV | Partner and Chief Talent Officer at Deloitte India
Years ago, I was in my middle school. I remember the Ethics exam. Sundar stood first. The teacher gave him a prize –the one that had an eraser at the tip. Sundar stood up, head down and did not speak. After some coaxing, he said that he had copied from a slip of paper, and that he was not worthy of the gift. The teacher praised him even more. Said it took guts to do what he did. The pencil was his to be. I never forgot that gift, which Sundar gave me – the courage to speak the truth.
In college, I remember Prof. Ramamurthy. He made Maths seemed so interesting. His parting words, when I left the college was – “If you are from Vivekananda College, you will always do well in your life.” Many times, when I am down and almost out, I remember these words of my Prof. I should be doing well after all as I was from that college!
My grandmother was another of those generous people. She gave me the gift of imagination. She said that all I needed to do was to ‘think of something’ and then work hard towards it. She said that many would join hands to make me win. She had not read the Rhonda Byrne’s ‘The Secret’ for sure!
Several bosses gave me gifts – one who gave the gift of mirth, another showed me how to be a good ‘boss’, a third flew me down to his favorite restaurant and told me that ‘I was a good man’. They all affected me deeply. They cared. They did. I distinctly remember the boss who had a massive disagreement on my self-appraisal and said that I had under-rated myself. He went on to upgrade my rating and said that it was only fair. What a gift!
I keep getting gifts each day – of the company of friends, of gentle words of encouragements, and smiles that go a mile. And I remember I have a responsibility – to pass it on and pay it forward. In this wonderful world of work and life, we have a duty to make someone’s life a tad better. Even if it takes a bit of an effort. Well worth it. We all have work to do……