Reaching out

To say that the boss is very approachable, and open to listening to anyone is perhaps the most cliched thing. Yet, I think this is completely true when it comes to Chitra.

When I had joined, we were perhaps not more than 20 people. Looking back, it seemed like we had all the time in the world then. How else could we afford those long hours of discussions on what in retrospect seems the smallest of things! Since we all would end up spending a lot of time with each other, and especially with Chitra, the basics were felt palpably. By the basics, I mean, the vision & intent of the organisation, the passion that she brings to every little work she does, the unwavering commitment to quality, the unflinching commitment to the well-being of EZVians. This meant that the most important attitudes and qualities somehow rubbed off. More importantly, it allowed all of us access to the leadership. We could speak our mind, we could reach out and talk about our doubts, misgivings and anything else.

Over time, we have grown to be a much larger organisation. While that means we have a larger influence, both in terms of quality and quantity, it also means that the gap is ever widening. Some years back we knew just about everybody by name. Now, there are people joining that we don’t even know of. For many of them to reach out to Chitra and the leadership may be unthinkable. Not because it has been communicated to them, but simply by virtue of the kind of distances that get created in such a scenario.

I believe the leadership in EZV realises that too, and there is a constant attempt to create ways for people to reach out. In a meeting today, I was posed with this question of how I plan to make it easier for people in my team to reach out to Chitra and the management of EZV, if they felt the need to do so. The assumption here was of course that people may hesitate for various reasons. This includes not just those reporting to me, but those one step below that as well. I did not have answers, but I promised myself to think about it. In this context, I couldn’t help but reflect on myself too. With those questions in mind, I left the meeting with mixed feelings. However, I felt grateful to Chitra and EZV, for attempting to consciously create ways where people can and do reach out without hesitation.

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