Das ka Dum with Dr Bhaskar Das: Your words for those sacked by media organisations and your advice to owners/ bosses who have effected these pink slips?

15 Oct,2019

The Q&As as part of Das ka Dum with Dr Bhaskar Das are a lot more than just fun and repartees. Like the question we have today, and BD’s response to it. Read on…


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Q. We’ve heard that many large media organisations have sacked a lot of people.  Two questions: 1. Your words for those sacked. 2. Your advice to the owners/bosses who have effected these pink slips?


A. Rightsizing (perhaps euphemism for the alleged sacking in your question) has always been in the lexicon of business to shore up the bottomline. Any environmental air pockets only exacerbate that trend. I believe that one can’t question the rules of the game when one is playing the game. So with frequent volatility in business for a variety of reasons in the external environment (I am not saying that internal environment is sanitised like operation theatres  but that’s outside the ambit of my answer) and one has to be adroit enough to navigate such choppy waters.

Here is what I have been following in life: one should work the hardest during peace time. This implies upskill oneself continuously when there is no air turbulence. It means one has to be anticipatory and positively paranoid about any future eventuality, be it sectoral or organisational.

Future backwards thinking in acquisition of skill is a critical variable. And the skill has to be two dimensional viz horizontal and vertical. Horizontal for adjacent pivoting and vertical to make one remarkable and indispensable within an organisational set-up.

So far as owners/ bosses are concerned, I won’t be able to empathise fully with their imperatives and imponderables. But if I were the person, I would have approached the subject from a different perspective (a soliloquy of course): every separation leaves a scar and affects their family. May we discuss individually their challenges and counsel them to mitigate emotional trauma. Plus keeping the job is important. So how about reducing the salary of those who would be jettisoned and expose them to acquire different skillsets to help the organisation. It’s as if one is recruting a new candidate where experience is not the logic of recruitment. Post that offer it’s the individual’s choice. Secondly, encourage people to be entrepreneurial within the larger ecosystem that is beneficial to the organisation and hold their hand for a fixed period for just enabling them to take off and in the process achieve the twin objectives of emotional stability and develop entrepreneurship in related areas of the organisation for its benefit.

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