There are a zillion things that I have learnt from my father. Punctuality, sincerity and perseverance. The most important lesson though came during our shoe polishing efforts. Yes, my brother and I used to polish all the shoes in the household by turn. Starting sunday, every alternate day we would polish all the black shoes to be worn the next day. And unlike our counterparts abroad, we didn’t get paid for our chores. We were supposed to help ma in the kitchen and dad in the garage without hoping for any remuneration in return.
We were taught about being competent in our jobs from that early age. My father had a very clear idea and advice for us. He told us, he didn’t care whether we ended up as engineers, shoe shiners or even a drain cleaner. What he really cared was how competent we were in our jobs. He understood that we often do not get what we really want… and that is life. But to make the best of what is handed out to us, is totally upto us and it didn’t have any shortcuts. Even till this day, he abhors incompetency. He tells me, even if you do your job for 1 hour a day, give it your 100 %. You may not be perfect… but the job you do, has to be. If you are handed something new, it is up to you to learn new skills to tackle the same. Do not ever give me the excuse that it is not your cup of tea.
Somehow this advice stuck with me. True to his words, I have never really got to do anything that I really love. I have been through various industries, job profiles and companies. What has been constant throughout is my dedication to what I do. I remember the first time I cleaned a slum area during the scouts and guides cleanliness drive – my teacher actually told me that my area literally shone. The time when I had to do welding and carpentry as a part of the first year of my engineering college… I surpassed even the mechanical students and received an A for my efforts. Be it the mundane task of cleaning excel sheets of addresses and couriering a million posters to customers or questioning slum dwellers about their TV viewing habits… I have always given each task my 100% however ridiculous/boring/tiresome it seemed. I have learnt new things to keep myself updated in my job and managed to be good at it.
I am just trying build a background to explain why I HATE incompetency. My simple funda – It doesn’t F-ing matter whether you love what you do or not (Trust me millions of us Hate what we do). What matters is the fact that you are getting paid for it ( again no matter how less or more). If you take up a job Do it. Don’t sham!!! So even if you have to stand in the hot sun and hold the door for a 1000 snooty bitches in Gucci glasses, do it with a smile. You applied for the job. It is all about being dedicated to the job. You may have the best of education and all the money in the world. You may hate everyone in the world and even hate the company you work for. You may be the most shrewd SOB on planet earth. But the one thing you need to be true to is your JOB.
Even if you are at the job till something better comes along… or for some financial pressures… or maybe you just wanna earn some pocket money … or for timepass…. be loyal to the job. Learn…. keep learning to become better. You can be ugly… introvert… a booze hound … a womanizer… a book worm or even a freak, but you have to be excellent at what you do. Stop running around the bush with excuses… stop playing the blame game… stop pretending to work if you are really not working… stop being the teacher’s pet so that you get away with your incompetency.
Just stop cause trust me however brilliantly you try and cover up your shortcomings, everybody can see them. They are too polite or indifferent to let you know about it… but they DO know!!! They make fun of you and laugh at your antics. Your incompetency will never cease unless you stop pretending to yourself about your awesomeness and take steps to rectify the gaps.
Of course there are those who think incompetency is their birthright. Especially the ones in the govt offices. From taking 3 hour long breaks ( even if their official breaks are for 1 hour, they would lounge around before and after the break making it 3 hour long), to taking a whole decade to sift through five pages – these guys actually believe that they are being paid to irritate us and make our lives miserable.
We keep talking about corruption as a disease… I believe incompetency is an bigger threat and an epidemic in our country. God save us…
So dear incompetent logs of lumber, kindly get off your behinds to actually do some work without pretensions.