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Do Indians take work very seriously

Kalyan Anand
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Joined: Feb 07, 2007
Posts: 194
I am not exposed to global market but I have one thought in mind... do Indians take the job very seriously ?

When I ask my manager a leave for 2 days he thinks twice and says he will confirm a day before my leave date. My friends and relatives working in other countries come to India on 15 days or 20 days trips once every year. Recently one of my relatives got a job 6 months back in US after completing MS and he took leave for 3 weeks...

Even for 1 day leave people have to inform a month in advance and I hear such working conditions in many firms. Do Indians take the job very seriously or is it just that they don't think of personal life or my perception of things is incorrect ?
Himanshu Gupta
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Joined: Aug 18, 2008
Posts: 598

Good Question. My view are as under:

1. It is not like that Indians work very seriously. When you talk about managers what their aim is to maximize the revenue from the project they are handling. In IT industry you get paid for the time. So taking leave means that the time which you are enjoying will not be get paid so the company is loosing some dollars when you take leaves.

2. When you talk about people working in US then you have to think that in what type of company they are?
If they are working in some service industry like TCS, Infosys then the story is same. But if they are working in some company which is not Service industry then there is no such problem.





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Sagar Kale
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Joined: May 02, 2008
Posts: 188
Indian companies, specifically service companies, yes they behave like that.

But if you work in MNC, you have to plan your holidays and give your vacation plan in advance. In that case you can take vacation for say 2-3 weeks if you had planned in advance and informed concerned people.

But in Indian companies, I think that do not work.

Forget about vacation, you may have to work on weekends and holidays.
Mohammed Yousuff
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Joined: Oct 17, 2007
Posts: 198
This is bad culture which is growing up in INDIA.. we have commitments to deliver what they expect , at the same time we should not miss our personal happiness...


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srishal singh
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Joined: May 11, 2007
Posts: 33
I also have observed this interesting thing about work life balance. Our clients who are european often take leaves of 2,3 weeks (at least 3,4 times a year). However our (offshore) managers are very rigourous on leave process and stingy in granting leave

It depends on the culture and mentality of the people. Our IT may be advertized as employee friendly but inside they are no better than sweatshops.

@Himanshu
The first point applies to people working all over the world in service industry. So I guess there is not much correlation between service industry and this mentality. I guess this has to do with work culture.


Sai Surya
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Joined: Feb 08, 2006
Posts: 457

In my opinion, people in US or in any country can take more and more leaves because the work has been "outsourced". In India, people will not be granted leaves so easily since they are doing the work being "outsourced" to them. Make sense?


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Arjun Shastry
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Joined: Mar 13, 2003
Posts: 1874
Sai is right. Duty of offshore manager is to keep team chargable to client most of the time and maximize the delivery.This is true for all IT service companies regardless of their location.In many cases you might have experienced offshore manager telling you to 'create the work' even if it is not required for client.!


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Marcel Wentink
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Joined: Sep 19, 2008
Posts: 157
I think Europeans take their responsibilities outside of work very seriously. I for example am a single parent, a father of a young teenage daughter. If I could not take time off when there is a problem, I would instantly go looking for another job, since that would be unacceptable for me. Also I have seen documentaires about work in India, and your children are often with some nanny. This also would be totally and totally unacceptable. It's my daughter, and I raise her, not some stranger. Especially the latter is just too crazy to think of, in my culture and life style.
Sai Surya
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Joined: Feb 08, 2006
Posts: 457

Marcel Wentink wrote:I think Europeans take their responsibilities outside of work very seriously. I for example am a single parent, a father of a young teenage daughter. If I could not take time off when there is a problem, I would instantly go looking for another job, since that would be unacceptable for me.


In the event of emergency anyone have the right to go out of office to fix issues. Its a moral right. When it comes to taking pre-planned leave, offshore managers may not approve immediately since it impacts project delivery. Ultimately taking leave is employee's right, if any employee insists on leave, he/she can take leave irrespective of manager's decision. However, nobody wants to ruine relationship with manager, so mutual understanding helps like asking colleague to take care of issues. Later stage if that colleague is going on leave, we should take care of his/her issues. This is how it worked for me!

I never ask my manager whether I can take leave. I always inform him that I am taking leave.
Tim Holloway
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Joined: Jun 25, 2001
Posts: 16022
    
  20

Sai Surya wrote:In my opinion, people in US or in any country can take more and more leaves because the work has been "outsourced". In India, people will not be granted leaves so easily since they are doing the work being "outsourced" to them. Make sense?


We don't call that leave, we call it becoming unemployed (made redundant).

Europe's time-off (vacation) policies have historically been much more generous than those of the USA. That's been changing. However, in the mean time, in the USA a lot of people are scared to take time off even for granted vacation time for fear that they'll miss some event critical to keeping their position.

It can be worse, however. I used to have a job where I had to get approval from everyone else in the department before I was granted time off.


Customer surveys are for companies who didn't pay proper attention to begin with.
Kalyan Anand
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Joined: Feb 07, 2007
Posts: 194
Tim Holloway wrote: However, in the mean time, in the USA a lot of people are scared to take time off even for granted vacation time for fear that they'll miss some event critical to keeping their position.


Tim in your case its you who are thinking twice to decide because of the worse market conditions which doesn't account for bad work culture. If you have some personal priority work and your manager decides whether it is important to you or not how would you feel ? This is the situation at most of the work places which I do not know if it prevails in other countries too...

Some bad trends.. how about your experiences in other countries ?

  • For a work that needs 2 days - Allot work on Friday 6 PM ask the status on Monday 9 AM and try getting it done by 12 PM
  • If you are asking for a sick leave... the manager inquires why you have not given the intimation before
  • For a work that takes 5 days... keep on checking the status every half an hour... the manager pours in his suggestions which are fit-for-nothing , like lines drawn on water. At the end of the day he blames you for wasting the day without following his suggestions as you don't have enough skills as he has
  • You are not supposed to browse when there is no such company policy...
  • You are expected to come at 9 AM sharp even though you worked till 2.AM the previous night... no company policy again... he just wishes you sit infront of your system
  • If you leave at 7 Pm your manager says you are leaving very early
  • You don't have work at office and the client is on vacation but still you have to be there in office stit infront of system from 9.am to 6.pm on 24th Dec and 31st Dec
  • If something goes wrong point finger on the team member and pull him to the senior management but if things go well... market himself that he has done a great job of motivating his team and get all accolades
  • This one is for the hr manager who looks at this...though there is absolutely zero work... you are idle on bench...you don't have a system to work on... there is no library... still you have to be in office for 9.5 hours...
  • Tim Holloway
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    Joined: Jun 25, 2001
    Posts: 16022
        
      20

    Santhosh Jali wrote:
    Tim Holloway wrote: However, in the mean time, in the USA a lot of people are scared to take time off even for granted vacation time for fear that they'll miss some event critical to keeping their position.


    Tim in your case its you who are thinking twice to decide because of the worse market conditions which doesn't account for bad work culture. If you have some personal priority work and your manager decides whether it is important to you or not how would you feel ? This is the situation at most of the work places which I do not know if it prevails in other countries too...

    I'm not competent to offer opinions on the Indian workplaces. For what it's worth, the Indian (or Bangla) people I know who are actually US citizens working in the US are just as insecure about taking time off as anyone else. Others may disagree, claiming that if you really want to you can always find work. Since I happen to have some pretty heavy-duty skills and spent 2001-2003 without any industry income whatsoever (excepting the magazine article on struts I published), I tend to think they're delusional, but they often say the same about me.

    Up until about 1988, there was an implicit contract between US employers and employees, which tended to ensure some degree of mutual loyalty. At that point, the contract was broken. Now employers expect to jettison personnel at will, and employees usually won't bother to fully invest themselves emotionally when they know they may not be there 3 years from not. There's an implicit assumption that you don't get maximum work out of someone because they feel they're part of something bigger than they are (even the CEO is transitory), but only because of fear of being terminated and replaced by someone cheaper. In the early 90's programmers were worried (needlessly) that the Japanese were going to take over software development and factory workers worried (rightly) that they would be replaced by offshore manufacturing. By the 2K1 recession, almost everyone was in fear for their continued employment. Even in Japan, "employment-for-life" is no longer a given nowadays.

    On the brighter side, although some really massive layoffs are expected in coming months, I've seen occasional hints that some employers are trying to keep the carnage to a minimum. When it gets to this degree, what used to be "good business" starts looking outright unpatriotic - not to mention that aiding and abetting an avalanche isn't good business anyway. So perhaps we'll see some good from all this.


    Some bad trends.. how about your experiences in other countries ?

  • For a work that needs 2 days - Allot work on Friday 6 PM ask the status on Monday 9 AM and try getting it done by 12 PM

  • We have a name for this: The "72-hour Friday" work day.

  • If you are asking for a sick leave... the manager inquires why you have not given the intimation before

  • The complaint is that American workers frequently come in sick and then infect the rest of the office because they're afraid to miss time. I generally don't have to ask, since they push me out the door.

  • For a work that takes 5 days... keep on checking the status every half an hour... the manager pours in his suggestions which are fit-for-nothing , like lines drawn on water. At the end of the day he blames you for wasting the day without following his suggestions as you don't have enough skills as he has

  • This is a problem with the person, not the workplace, and people like that seem to be all over the world.

  • You are not supposed to browse when there is no such company policy...

  • Fortunately, I've never been in a shop quite that repressive, and with my job responsibilities, they don't usually push anyway.

  • You are expected to come at 9 AM sharp even though you worked till 2.AM the previous night... no company policy again... he just wishes you sit infront of your system
  • If you leave at 7 Pm your manager says you are leaving very early
  • You don't have work at office and the client is on vacation but still you have to be there in office stit infront of system from 9.am to 6.pm on 24th Dec and 31st Dec

  • All of the above are what I call the "inflatable dummy" style of management. That is, for all the real difference it makes, you could be at home and an inflatable dummy be placed at your desk. It's purely a power trip for management - excepting the days when they want to bring in prospective clients for a tour - and when management gets too wrapped up in its own mystique, there's trouble ahead.

  • If something goes wrong point finger on the team member and pull him to the senior management but if things go well... market himself that he has done a great job of motivating his team and get all accolades

  • There's no hope for that one, alas.

  • This one is for the hr manager who looks at this...though there is absolutely zero work... you are idle on bench...you don't have a system to work on... there is no library... still you have to be in office for 9.5 hours...

  • Ironically, this is also a complaint made about people in union shops.

    If there's a possibility that they may send you out on short notice - or a prospective client may drop in, it's good to be onsite. I've been enlisted to do various bits of office housekeeping just to keep me occupied - and to obtain at least a little value from my being on the payroll during down times. Usually, we made it a short day, though. One advantage of not being in a union.
    Marcel Wentink
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    Joined: Sep 19, 2008
    Posts: 157
    Santhosh Jali wrote:Some bad trends.. how about your experiences in other countries ?..




    Well we do have managers like that in the Netherlands also. But it is not that extreme not that common. You seem to make a sarcastic exaggerated view of the reality a bit? The one time I worked in such environment it's with a boss who is the owner of a small software company, and his creation was his life, his mission. He could not understand we had other things to do at home. I could just manage there, but it did not have any benefits over jobs where I could get the same salary for less uhm 'challanges'. So I left.
    Tim Holloway
    Saloon Keeper

    Joined: Jun 25, 2001
    Posts: 16022
        
      20

    Marcel Wentink wrote:
    Santhosh Jali wrote:
    Tim Holloway wrote: Some bad trends.. how about your experiences in other countries ?..




    Well we do have managers like that in the Netherlands also. But it is not that extreme not that common. You seem to make a sarcastic exaggerated view of the reality a bit? The one time I worked in such environment it's with a boss who is the owner of a small software company, and his creation was his life, his mission. He could not understand we had other things to do at home. I could just manage there, but it did not have any benefits over jobs where I could get the same salary for less uhm 'challanges'. So I left.


    I'm not quite sure which item you're referring to. I've had a boss like you refer to, but she was not typical - in fact, there's strong evidence that she was extremely insecure with more than a little Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder on the side. Customers loved her because they knew her obsessions would ensure that she'd always give maximum work for the dollar. However, they also disliked the fact that she'd essentially try to run their business. Then again, insanity isn't just for Management.

    If you mean the "inflatable dummy in chair" syndrome, that's the last office job I held. Almost all of us were better equipped to work from home than with the more limited resources of the office, and we were all people who'd demonstrated the ability to be productive without actually having someone watch us all day long. But we were forced to commute in daily anyway, because the boss liked to be able to look out his office window and see his minions slaving away.
    Marcel Wentink
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    Joined: Sep 19, 2008
    Posts: 157
    the boss liked to be able to look out his office window and see his minions slaving away


    You know what the funny thing is. The type off boss I had, that was a desaster, actually thought he was a swell guy himself, and that all the other bosses were like the above.... I wonder who will read all this and think: 'Oh yes, all the other bosses are like that, but everybody loves me, my company is so unique', while the reader is actually the worst case of what he is reading about.
    Maneesh Godbole
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    Joined: Jul 26, 2007
    Posts: 10272
        
        8

    Your manager's approach to your leave request depends on quite a few things.
    1) Deliverables
    2) How much is work going to be affected in your absence
    3) How hard are you to replace
    4) How many projects are you working on.

    My company has a policy of not carrying forward the unclaimed leaves.
    Currently, I am on vacation. I had 20 days unclaimed leaves left which I am supposed to consume before 31st March.
    So I discussed this with my manager, and we figured out a time table where the leaves would be distributed over a period of time.

    I really do not understand this leave business. If you do not take frequent leaves, but take a week off clubbing it with festivals, like Divali, I do not think anybody is going to object.


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    Veer Bhatia
    Greenhorn

    Joined: Jan 30, 2009
    Posts: 1
    India is a poor country with abundant intelligent people, who also possess strong work ethic. In the last 1000 years or so, the nation has embraced foreign culture many times which has contributed to people becoming risk averse and timid, but loyal.

    Macro-economic principles govern who is dependent on whom, and by how much. Industrial relations and legal system of India is, at the moment, no match for what is prevelant in developed economies.

    Jai Hind.
    Prem Pothana Kumar
    Greenhorn

    Joined: Jan 12, 2009
    Posts: 2
    for them it is more on MONEY rather then on WORK. they see more as a revenue generating machine rather then a passion filled task. they do the work but they dont accomplish (not all cases). so your questions "Work Very Seriously, then the answer is NO. (this is my opinion)
    ramesh maredu
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    Joined: Mar 15, 2008
    Posts: 210

    India is a poor country


    As an indian I feel it is developing country, not poor at all and not developed also, It is mix of poor and rich, and dominated by middle class people.


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