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Professionals or Humans?

January 20, 2010

I never knew that these two terms are mutually exclusive. But few people proved it!!

Lately, I happened to notice few incidents which made me averse to such professionals! To maintain anonymity of the persons addressed in this post, I will not mention their names.

My friend had to take off from work because his mother was hospitalized. The treatment took more time and so did his absence in office.

Nevertheless, he somehow managed to come to office to finish the piled up tasks. And this is when his boss came up to him and faked “How is your mother?” With least interest to know about his mother, he continued “How much work is pending?”. Now this was just to make him feel worse. But the worse was still not asked. And so he continued “Do you have brothers/sisters?, can they try to take off and look after your mother so that you can come to office?”!!!!!!!!

What?! Yes! I was agape to witness this incident. With no words to sympathize with my friend, I continued doing work. May be, I was just being professional like his boss.

Before I could ignore and let go, I came across this incident.

A friend of mine had a baby boy last week. But unfortunately the baby developed some respiratory infection and had to be admitted to ICU immediately after birth. He took off from office to take care of his wife and the baby. The illness went on for almost a week during which he even tried to come to office to finish his pending tasks.

But yesterday, I came to know that doctors could not save his baby. I had no courage to face or tell him anything. However this news was communicated to his supervisor. To which he sadly asked “Do we have alternate resource?” And I did not have any words to tell!! May be, this time I could not be a professional.

I can never afford to lose my humanity to become a professional. Will you?

17 Comments leave one →
  1. Giri permalink
    January 21, 2010 3:55 am

    pitfalls of a capitalistic setup!

  2. lostworld permalink
    January 22, 2010 3:43 am

    Oh my.. that is sickening!! 😦

    When it comes to work , I always remember this one thing said to me long back — Noone is indispensible.

    When it comes to family, you are irreplaceable almost always.
    Guess people always mix up the two.

  3. R. Ramesh permalink
    January 22, 2010 8:00 am

    of course humanity first yar. if v r not alive,where is the question of professionalism..that some bums dont understand is a problem…touching post yar..

  4. R. Ramesh permalink
    January 22, 2010 8:00 am

    of course humanity first yar. if v r not alive,where is the question of professionalism..that some bums dont understand is a problem…touching post yar..

  5. Mohan permalink
    January 22, 2010 8:00 am

    We do have policies like compassion/paternity leaves. I am sure every IT company would have some guidelines regarding such hard times.

    Folks with little brains (LB) need to understand one thing here – A person works to live and support his family. If the family system is on turmoil, not sure how insanely the LBs talk. Need of the hour is to show some humanity. I think they all need some management lessons.

  6. Babs permalink
    January 22, 2010 8:00 am

    “NO” I would not. And depending on the organisation and how strong the HR is, this can and should actually be sensitively escalated or brought out in some forum. Something that should not be silently taken, Never know when you might have to face the situation.

  7. Brijesh Gajera permalink
    January 22, 2010 8:00 am

    This debate is raging in all the circles, particularly after the incident of a TV cameraman shooting a dying Tamilnadu policeman on road instead of trying to save his life. It shows how much pressure the so-called professionalism have put on us mortal beings, and most of us do buckle under that.
    But surely there are people who answer that call of humanity more often than not, and they are very good professionals also. I am sure one day you will come across one of them and share that experience also 🙂

  8. Dhiman permalink
    January 22, 2010 8:56 am

    I don’t think this is professionalism because humanity is the most basic trait then comes everything …. but like said above the pressure is too much that people are losing out on ‘humane’ aspect of a profession …

  9. BK Chowla, permalink
    January 22, 2010 12:43 pm

    I must mention an actual incident.
    I know of a person who’s brother suddenly took ill and he left town at night itself to be his elder brother.Like a responsible officer,this man called his boss next morning.
    Guess what was the question asked to him?
    What if your brother dies,will you have to take 13 days leave?

  10. R. Ramesh permalink
    January 22, 2010 1:51 pm

    thanks 4 yr good words buddy:)

  11. Yogesh permalink
    January 22, 2010 4:18 pm

    wat a coincidence…
    i am just now visiting ur blog n u mine…i am writing a comment n u too…i was remembering u n u too…lols…

    well, dear…
    u wrote 2 very good examples…
    but i and i guess even others have been witness to more worse of such types…i guess this is reall ynot good…its we humans who do the work and if we humans are not happy then how can we work…ok agreed there is an over-avilability of human resources but then will this go on forever….some or the other time people will think whether to work with such a company or not…isn’t it???

    can i be worthy enough to ask…
    “Don’t the bosses face such situations? Do they leave all family jobs/ties/works/committments like they want from their staff”

  12. Mitr Friend - Bhushavali permalink
    January 22, 2010 6:20 pm

    So sad to come to know of such heartless painting…

    Style on a Casual Date – Fashion Panache
    Blogger’s Choice Award – My Travelogue

  13. Netra permalink
    January 23, 2010 9:35 am

    It’s because of a simple reason. Wrong people are put in wrong designations.
    Most of them do not work based on their passion or liking but just for the sake of more money.
    People manager should be one who can relate to people and who is more human! Its very rare to see such people though.
    Its high time companies change their policies or if already have good ones, atleast they should be followed properly. Employees should be brave enough and courageous not to fall prey for such pressures. Companies should also empower their employees in escaling issues they face with their inhuman managers.

  14. Suhail Rasheed permalink
    January 23, 2010 5:54 pm

    Dear Vineeta,
    The word ‘professional’ is mostly misunderstood and misrepresented. I recently read a book called “The Professional” written by Subroto Bagchi. I strongly recommend the book to you.

  15. Kumar Ahir permalink
    January 26, 2010 5:43 am

    Professionalism never supports rudeness and inhuman behavior. Infact Professionalism has to be founded on Humanity. You have to be professional to your work and relations at work. As some of the friends rightly said, this solely depends on the work culture, which varies from company to company.

  16. Haddock permalink
    March 9, 2010 5:18 pm

    Being professional without a human touch will not get the desired result as expected.
    I have seen some of these types in our office too, and frankly speaking they get stabbed in the back the moment their back is turned.

  17. July 9, 2010 4:33 am

    All of us are coming face-to-face with such scenarios and slowly similar situations are on the rise. You could blame the supervisor’s behaviour on the pressure he faces from his supervisor and this is a linked list which goes and ends at the management ppl. The scenario is becoming so bad that I now feel scared its better to not have kids because by the time they become adults, there wont be even a trace of humanity anywhere seen.
    One friend’s mother was hospitalised in severe condition during 2009 and he took leave for almost 2 months to take care of his mother as he had no other help. At the end of 2 months, he was terminated from service. Imagine his situation. So what lesson it gives to people – Dont take leave even if your mother is dying, bcoz you will lose your job. So, if a person is not considerative even to his mother, then what humanity can he be expected to show to others who matters less.

    The greediness of the world resulted in corporates and their greedy management. The biggest blunder God did was his decision to give ‘Intelligence’ to humans. That created every luxury on earth and is eventually leading it to extinction as well.

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