A manager’s gripe

anger management at work

angry manager's need help!

As they say, gripe always travels upwards.

So here’s an exhaustive list of issues that most managers have with their team, at their workplace.

If you find yourself nodding your head in agreement to most of what is said here, then you know what I am talking about!

Feel free to add more to the list.

Or better yet, suggest a few ideas or tips to lessen the burden of this tribe.

Happy reading. Or it is really: 🙂

  • Your team has serious knowledge and skill gaps overall
  • Once assigned a task, they are not able to take it to completion
  • Negligence on their part leads to the burden and onus of delivery being passed on to you
  • For minor things, you are still expected to provide answers
  • Once given a direction, there is not enough effort or time spent on the task
  • Unless you rework things or sit with them and work “with” them, most of them are not able to get things done
  • You have to personally sit with them and explain every small detail of what is expected and how to do it
  • Even after that, nothing gets done or delivered as explained in painful detail
  • You end up feeling I should have done it on my own, at least it would have been done right and gotten delivered
  • The documents delivered or tasks completed are not up to the standard expected
  • Even after repeated requests, you don’t get the documents/work assigned done on time
  • Beyond what is told, there is no effort to think or go out of the way to do things
  • Even where someone has less work, they do not offer their support to you or to their colleagues
  • A lot of time is spent in coordination and explaining things to clients, which your team should be able to manage
  • Clients are not very knowledgeable and so have to be handheld constantly by you
  • Clients are extremely sharp, you know what they want but your team just doesn’t get it
  • If left to an executive, they are not able to resolve client issues and eventually the call comes to you
  • Issues are not being reported to you at the right time, for you to take corrective action
  • They inform you about leaves or half days at the drop of the hat and expect you to manage work
  • If something critical comes up and they have a planned leave, they want you to deal with it without any support from them
  • The most common excuses for non-delivery – “I tried, but”, “I was busy with something else”, “I don’t understand”, “I was on leave”, “I did not get time”, “I forgot, sorry”
  • And somehow, only you seem to be answerable for everything that goes wrong or if there’s a problem
  • Even people with reasonable experience do not or are not capable of supporting you in your work to get things done
  • “I did not get the right direction” or “I have shared it, it’s stuck at his/her end” or “He/she does not listen or have the time, you please tell him/her to do it” – are most common cribs about you
  • All of the above is leading to lesser time for you to focus on client programs and deliver quality work
  • All of the above leads to increasing frustration, as you are constantly held responsible for your KRA without proper support
  • All of the above is leading to major stress and may be causing problems with your work-life balance
  • All of the above leaves you feeling that there is nothing good that I have delivered/done today
  • All of the above leaves you frustrated when you walk out of the office, because work just piles up on your desk
  • All of the above leaves no or very little time for you to pursue your own interests or enhance your own knowledge/skills
  • All of the above leads to high anxiety when you walk in at work or realize that not much great work has been done
  • All of the above leaves very little time for meeting friends/family or other people because there is always the burden of work hanging over your head
  • All of the above leads you to question what do you do in office from 8 am in the morning to 9 pm in the night
  • And more…

Nodding yet?

 

Zumbo: the super pup!


zumbo the pr pup

do i have super powers?!

 

While working really hard at his firm, Zumbo realizes that suddenly he’s become really good at this work. His colleagues love him, his clients depend on his advice and his boss absolutely adores him. It’s a great time to be Zumbo!

“Hey Zumbo, how do you manage to come up with these brilliant ideas? I just couldn’t seem to think of anything on this issue! You are something Zumbo! ”

Zumbo took immense pride in his work and that finally he’s beginning to love what he does and everybody loves him! He became more confident while advising clients and comfortable while suggesting out-of-the-box ideas which were loved by everyone. The best part, he delivered brilliantly on all that he had thought of and suggested. He made sure that he put in the extra effort and time to make things happen. It was a great time to be Zumbo! The guys wanted to be him and the girls wanted to be with him. But good old Zumbo, continued to keep his cool without a chip on his shoulder and focused on evolving beyond what was told.

After 6 months, Zumbo realized something was amiss.

“How did I get to this place? My work never gets done! It is so tiring. My colleagues dump their job on me saying I am the best person to deal with it. My boss always calls me for everything that she wants to discuss and get done. My clients call me for every little thing that they want or for things that haven’t been done yet by others! And I am expected to get them done! All by myself!”

He started to lose touch with his friends, one could rarely see him smile anymore and he seemed to be so engrossed with work that he didn’t eat for days. He had forgotten the last time that he chased a car, soaked in the afternoon sun or shared a drink from the office water dish with Ally, the cute Alsatian babe.

After a long drinking binge at the nearby watering hole, The Lap Dog, Zumbo decides to fight back! “Enough is enough! I’ll show them for snapping at my tail constantly!”

Zumbo started showing up late at work. For starters he thought that that might tick everybody off. Everyone just thought that he must be tired and so he’s coming late. But at least he’s getting the work done, so let’s leave him be.

It made Zumbo angry. He started to act out at work with angry outbursts at others for no reason. Everyone thought it’s the pressure getting to him and left him alone.

He stopped taking calls and sharing ideas anymore. He stopped doing any work beyond what he was supposed to. Everyone got a bit worried now. They started asking if something was wrong and if he needed some help. Zumbo refused and continued on his path of destruction.

“Help?! I don’t want your help! I want you to do your job!”

A senior executive was visiting the office one day. He walked up to Zumbo hanging around the cafeteria and soaking up the sun with a nice juicy piece of steak.

“Hey who do you think you are?!” the senior screamed at Zumbo. His veins were throbbing, hand pointing in rage and eyes popped out of their sockets.

Zumbo calmly replied, “I am the guy who does his job! You must be the other guy!”

The senior lost his cool and immediately asked Zumbo to report to his office tomorrow along with his boss, Madison. By now, after hearing all that had happened, she was incredibly angry at Zumbo!

“Zumbo, what is wrong with you! What happened? Why are you behaving this way? You are such a smart pup! With so much potential and talent! Why are you throwing it all away?” Madison yelled in frustration. She still had a soft corner for him, but couldn’t ignore all that was happening for the last few months.

This was the last straw for Zumbo! He just couldn’t believe that his own boss did not understand what he was going through. Even if he wasn’t being the best that he could be, he still never completely let go. He was still helping everyone and taking on more work from them and completing it for them. He kept listening to his boss talk about opportunities and how he is a vital part in the chain leading to PR glory. He was doing all that, just without a smile anymore and that irked everyone.

His carefully guarded inner sanctum now seemed violated at this callous attitude towards him. He wanted to let go but he tried to restrain his anger as much as he could. And then it happened…

“You think I am some kind of a super pup! That I can just get things magically done, deal with everyone’s work and bad attitudes, rework on their assignments and still be happy all the time. I am slogging like a dog here Maddy! Give me a break!”

Madison did not know what to say to him. She asked him to leave her alone.

The next day, Zumbo and Madison showed up at the senior executive’s office. She noticed that Zumbo had arrived early and was sitting there by himself. Madison sat in the chair next to him, but at a noticeable distance, as if to let him know that she was disappointed.

The senior entered and exchanged a few pleasantries. He looked at Madison and asked “What’s the problem with this guy? He seems to have stopped caring about anything that happens here. Are you aware of what’s happening around or are you just as clueless”

Madison looked at Zumbo, took a long breathe and replied “Sir, the real problem is that I think we stopped caring for him. We didn’t see the signs or understand him better. You can’t expect a Zumbo to care about everything when the rest just walk all over him. He needs help, my help. I will take care of it.”

With that Madison signaled to Zumbo to get up and walk out with her.
Zumbo was confused, rattled and grateful all at the same time. He didn’t know whether to thank Madison or blame her for everything.

She looked at him and noticed the bewilderment on his face.

“Zumbo, I am angry. But I understand. We’ll sort things out and get you more help at work. Now go home, take a bath, get some sleep and come to work after you are well rested!”

With that, Zumbo walked away with a feeling of warmth, contentment and satisfaction that at least there was someone who cared and understood what he was going through.

Two months later, after Zumbo had resumed with renewed resolve he was a changed pup. Ally saw more of him at the water dish, lapping cold water in glee.

She went closer to him, smiled at him and took a sip of water.

She asked him “Hey you are looking great! What changed?”

Zumbo replied with the wisdom of a transformed pup, “Nothing. I still am caught in a million things, Maddy ensures that I am kept on my paws and the rest … well the less I say the better”

“So what are you so happy about?”

“At least they get me now…” he replied looking listlessly at the sun rays streaming through the window.

His work had improved, everybody loved him again. His clients started recommending his work to others and loved interacting with him. He was now able to find more time for himself and his family. He started thinking of all the things that he had missed out in the last few months and prepared a schedule for him to start pursuing his interests. He found his life balance once again. The rest started stepping up to the plate and taking on more responsibilities, to avoid a Zumbo episode again. Madison would keep a watch on him and started having frequent, albeit informal interactions with him to cheer him up. More than anything else, everyone realized how much they missed had the happy, smiling, brilliant and witty Zumbo.

He started walking slowly to his desk with his back straight, chin up and a smile on his face.

“It’s good to find myself again”

 

Zumbo – The Social Media & PR Pup!

Zumbo, the adorable social media and digital communications and public relations pup!

Zumbo - The PR & Social Media Pup!

 

Hi there! I am Zumbo. I am 3 months old and already there so much to share. Such is life in the 21st Century, fast, quick, short and simple. Oh bow! That’s exactly how you can describe me too!

So let’s get the obvious out of the way. How did I end up in PR? How did I become fascinated with media? How did I get acquainted to social media and digital media communications? And what could a 3 month old PR pup possibly contribute to the working of public relations and communications? Well, am gonna try and answer some of that here, but most of it will be clear if you read my posts here regularly.

Wait a minute, I gotta scratch… (Scratches with hind leg vigorously…)

I was born out of an idea. Some old guy called Hunter Thompson (Yea the same guy who Johnny Depp plays in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and The Rum Diary) created this whole art-form in journalism called Gonzo. It’s gonna be a bit intense, but I promise to keep it light and entertaining. Then again I am such a cute little pup, who wouldn’t want to listen to my stories!

Haan, toh where were we. I was telling you how I got into all this and what makes me the authority to blog about all this high-funda business of communications. Well to start with I am a product of digital media. That doesn’t mean that iPhone and Samsung tablet got together for a night and made me, but the world saw me first on Blackberry Messenger and Facebook. That’s how I got adopted, by the way. After that it has been a whirlwind romance with social media. I got a home and I am grateful!

I am born in this new world of democratized digital media and opinion sharing on the fly! Things like the Egypt revolution, WikiLeaks, iTunes and Flipkart don’t amaze me. These are things that my forefathers had predicted when the internet (ARPA Net) was thought of 40 odd years back. What’s the fuss, I don’t understand.

The first three months in public relations and social media were interesting. They keep complaining that I crap a lot, but whoddathunk it that being full of shit is a good thing!

So I go about my business everyday by surfing the net, watching Facebook pages reading internet usage reports and advising clients on their communication strategy. Well, at least I hope I did half of those things. I start my day with a big ole dump (trust me, it releases the tension) and then waiting for people to tell me what to do next. It sucks that I have to wait for instructions, but they say that I am just a kid with a lot to understand about the complexities of communications. Fair enough, but when you don’t know how to tweet, man that’s seriously messed up! Don’t you think?

I don’t know why people who work with me keep saying “It’s a dog’s life!” Well, firstly I take that as a compliment, it’s not such a bad thing and secondly if you can lick your own privates, what more do you need! But people in communications constantly seem to struggle and stress with what’s coming next. I don’t know what’s the big deal, but I guess am about to find out soon.

More time I spend in this industry, more I am convinced that I have just hit the tip of the iceberg. Water scares me by the way, and I hate my baths! 😉

So keep your eyeballs glued to this space, to know more about “The Adventures of Zumbo!” Your friendly, neighborhood social media and PR pup!

Woof! Back to scratching eggs, I say!

 

Catharsis: Zumbo’s first day!

The following is written in the early style of Gonzo which means at the very least, a half-assed attempt was made to channelize the ghost of HST. The below documented account is fictitious. Resemblance to any person living, dead or right wing is purely coincidental…well…maybe not…

And if you are wondering what Gonzo is or who HST is, don’t bother

Zumbo, the adorable social media and digital communications and public relations pup!

Zumbo - The PR & Social Media Pup!


I sat there clutching my mouse with all the force that I could muster in my current miserable state. It turns out that original thought can be a tricky proposition especially when the client is hell bent on twisting your arm. It can be quite a strain on the sleeves!


I was frantically typing a press release on how the guy’s daughter lost her bicycle and it was miraculously found in the same place that it was left in the first place, which in his mind was a significant contribution to the nation’s GDP. Besides the irony of the fact that the above mentioned daughter couldn’t ride a bike or didn’t own one, the release had to be done in the next 10 minutes.


My mind started sweating precociously. “Hell…what do I do now?” I yelled across the room. I looked around for some solutions as my mind was in a jimmy state. I saw my colleagues face buried in the ethereal white screen.


He reminded me of the early tribes which sat around the fire hoping the light would never go out, but unfortunately, it always does. Also, his sheep skin cloak and grizzly claws were quite quaint. In spite of myself, I refused to judge. His cologne a repugnant truth that failed to subside, I ventured towards the beast with a stick in hand.


I had to tread cautiously. This animal was not to be messed with. Besides, his mating habits were not well documented as yet. I poked him with the stick to gauge the nature of his alacrity and rate of evasive reflex action. Both were non existent.


This was a safe territory. I identified him as per the standard ‘Do it yourself PR 101’ manual as the blinkered degenerate who would know what to do next as per procedure. My guide to all questions which posed a moral, ethical and professional dilemma was right there…or so I thought.


”Umm…its simple draft the release…” said he of the finger which drips with fresh nose cheese.


“But the daughter doesn’t even own the bike…” I retorted much violently. My cape fluttering in the wind as I stood on
MoronMountain with the vast expanse of derelict facades of grim conformity spread in front of me.


In my infinite wisdom I pronounced “Fuck you man …. Screw the Guy… I don’t think this is worth it…!”


I felt a tug on my super moron resistant cape and I heard Dog Wonder barking away in the distance. My sixth sense was tingling! I turned around precociously, with one hand firmly on my machete. There stood the biggest man I have seen like a shadow of a mountain. My heart started pounding…my pulse racing…I caught a glimpse of the lurking menace.


Phew…it was just Olga, the cleaning lady. I exhaled a sigh of relief.


“Oh bloody hell…!” I heard a scream. It was my fuckin’ boss with the fuckin’ Guy! And that was my fuckin’ scream!


“Hey what were you yelling boy” asked Q, The Boss.


It so transpired that Olga ‘the hairy cleaning lady with a heart of gold’, had managed to block my view with her broad brooding board body. My super hearing failed me again, may be I was just out of batteries.


As I contemplated the merits of Sony over Eveready, my face was smattered with a spray of spit. It was my boss looking at me gingerly and demanding an answer.


“Nothing Sire” I said, he insisted that we call him ‘Sire’.


”Boy, meet the Guy whose daughter has lost and found the bicycle and it has a huge impact on the nation’s GDP…” Said he of the big head and bouncing arms.


“But Sire…” I whimpered in unyielding defiance.


“Hey… if the guy says so it must be true…” thundered Q.


“Ok Sire.” I caved.


And as I turned around to do his bidding, it happened.


The Guy stepped on Olga’s unforgiving mop and slipped on the drenched floor. The sound of his back bone crunching in utter angst spread a chill through my spine. In that brief moment the Guy had broken his back. He lay there insipid and innocuous to the passing frantic blinkered degenerates.


There was the ray of sunshine which I hoped for, in that cluttered, claustrophobic room chilled with the AC’s unrelenting icy blast which put a smile on my face.


“Guy in Coma, Situation may worsen nation’s GDP”


I typed smiling a satisfied smile as the news blared over my station “Reliable Industries Limited Chief to launch Nation’s first thought trading stock exchange…And this is just in…On the eve of this momentous event his daughter seems to have misplaced her bicycle…”

AMD versus Intel: social media wars

“Feud” is a term which evokes imagery of Gallic warriors engaged in a ferocious battle to conquer the opponent’s territory and eventual world domination.

The historical ‘feud’ between AMD & Intel needs no introduction for some one clued into processor wars. [Check out this white paper for further information]. AMD’s VP, Advanced Marketing, Patrick Moorhead, took the battle pitch a notch higher by publicly calling:

Intel’s refusal to deal with issues like battery life on blogs and Twitter “offensive and derogatory to consumers” as reported by The Inquirer at SXSW 09 this week.

The new turf cleverly chosen by Patrick, is an indication of things to come in the social media space. Intel largely, has been a reference point for technology companies looking to engage audiences with social media initiatives [see: Intel SM Guidelines, 2, 3]. Although, the effectiveness of these efforts and their nature may be a topic of broader debate, it is likely that being the market leader in both perception, social media and valuation it is an easier target.

My techie friends tell me, that AMD has much better processors than Intel, and both have their own pros and cons. In India AMD’s footprint has been limited and has not been able to breach the tech-fanatic barrier. For most users Intel brand recall is much higher and is often associated with trust and performance. Most are oblivious to what processor their PC manufacturer has set up to them. I have my doubts that “AMD inside” will evoke a sense of relief amongst Indian PC users.

A localized social media campaign may help them in creating buzz on the burgeoning social media platforms here in India. May be AMD India ought to take notice of this fact in order to tap developing markets.

Meanwhile, Moorhead, has hit the spot when he says

“Neutering people from the corporate brand was the worst mistake a firm could make…social media is social because it’s about people”.

Help yourself to the twitter accounts of AMD_Unprocessed and Intel to make an educated guess on who scores on personality!!

This is a chronicle of my experiments with social media, web 2.0 and digital communications which details industry updates and analysis from India and around the world

Social Media and Pharma

This is a chronicle of my experiments with social media, web 2.0 and digital communications which details industry updates and analysis from India and around the world

New media, new challenges

Written in response to a question on the communication dynamics and how marketers and communications professionals need to evolve with their consumers:

Every era is defined by the medium which captures the imagination of the masses. In the 50’s when it was said that that television would carry live visuals and sound of an event happening miles away from its actual location, there was disbelief and then eventual acceptance. Today TV defines the information priority of the masses.

With this perspective, I submit that internet as a mode of information exchange is relatively young with an evolving history. We have not even seen the tip of the iceberg yet.

What we need to understand as communicators and businesses is that the notion of control on our messages has been a long misplaced one. Control was a subset of the limitation posed by the mediums. This is the single factor, in my opinion which has changed relationship between media owners, producers and consumers.

Media no longer involves astronomical costs which led to centralized one-to-many dissemination of messages and content. Today, anyone with a computer and an internet connection has the potential of being a key media influencer and a mass media agenda-setter themselves. Case in point would be Gawker media properties, Huffington Post, TechCrunch, Drudge Report which were essentially heralded by a one man media army and now are valued anywhere between $100 – 300 million each.

There is an unprecedented information overload and access causing the maelstrom of chaos experienced today. But, this is largely due to a lack of efficient filter mechanisms and guidelines which allow a user to discover information most relevant and useful to him or her.

As social media practitioners advocating and sharing information on behalf of corporates the challenge is to make the most relevant piece of data, from the point of view of the client and the user, easily accessible. Also, internet communication operates in a message loop functioning in a community environment (many-to-many) rather than a linear message flow. This would involve high level of commitment from the practitioner as well as the institution looking to harness the potential of social media.

There are many a roadblocks in utilizing this medium which range from actual perception change potential, messaging responsibility, sound execution and lastly concrete deliverables. As technology evolves, these barriers will diminish and we will need to understand how to best deal with this new reality.

This is a chronicle of my experiments with social media, web 2.0 and digital communications which details industry updates and analysis from India and around the world

Online versus Print: Top Indian Financial Newspapers audience comparison

print versus online

As a PR professional the simplest industry standard of measuring coverage I have come across has been advertising value equivalent (AVE), which loosely translates to the amount you would have to spend to buy the same space as the article appeared in a print publication.

It is only recently we have started to wonder what impact an article would have if it is carried in the online edition.

Most Indian publications treat their online editions as an extension of their print counterpart. Many of these media houses had a head start in the online space with the Hindu launching its online edition way back in 1995. But, in terms of innovation and adapting new emerging realities of web 2.0 there is a gross disconnect.

The lacks of interactivity and underleveraged potential of citizen journalism are two broad negatives that stick out like a wart. This may be due to the restrain on the part of media companies to hire new media professionals who understand the new form of reportage due to the supply-demand pressure and unproven economies of scale.

As opinions in the article “Why are print dailies so conservative with their online editions?” on exchange4media.com suggests:

A senior executive of an online firm says, “It’s like a chicken and egg situation. Media companies do not intend to have a separate sales and content team for the online edition, apprehending that the expenses can’t be recovered. Similarly, without a dedicated team, they can’t look at earning sizeable revenue from the online venture.”

“It’s also because many print media owners have already burnt their fingers during the dotcom boom, which is why they are extra cautious while implementing any online plan,” says another media observer.

So how do the online editions fare vis-à-vis their print avatars. This has been a question in my mind for a long time. Quite frankly I hoped some one could come up with this analysis and save me the trouble!

Method in madness
I compared the traffic statistics of leading English language Financial Dailies in Mumbai – in terms of brand equity and circulation. I picked financial dailies considered as they are considered as the bastion of corporate voice and have a stickiness factor when it comes to reading habits of their core audiences. Think of a “suit” headed to work with a copy of The Economic Times safely tucked away under his arm.

A comparison between their print and online editions should give an insight into their relevance to their target audiences which is mostly a captive demographic which has about 9 -10 hours of internet access at workplace and is often the sole source of news based information.

The English language Financial Dailies I chose are as follows:
The Hindu Business Line,
The Financial Express,
The Economic Times,
Mint and
Business Standard

Comparison was done using three free web analytics tools Alexa, Compete and Google trends for websites.

Below are the print circulation figures of these financial dailies as of 2009. The source is a leading PR measurement company based in Mumbai.

print circulation figures of leading financial newspapers dailies in india
The Alexa Site comparisons are as follows

Alexa traffic comparison of financial newspaper websites
This is how they fare on Compete

Compete traffic comparison of financial newspaper websites
And lastly Google trends

Google trends traffic comparison of financial newspaper websites

Google trends and Alexa (free analytics tool) do not map sub-domains (at least to my knowledge) so there may be a noise in the numbers for The Economic Times which is hosted on http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/ and not www.indiatimes.com as it is compared on these tools.

Here’s a look on the numbers on Google trends without The Economic Times (Indiatimes) websites:

Google trends traffic comparison of financial newspaper websites without Economic Times
Findings
1. The most widely read financial publication The Economic Times has a total circulation of 2,30,000+/- in Mumbai while the online edition has the average monthly unique traffic of 1,50,000+/- (compete)

2. The Hindu Business Line with a circulation of 19,000+ in Mumbai is the lowest within current parameters. Its online edition generates average monthly unique traffic of 30,000+/- to 40,000+/-

3. Mint, which has undertaken a lot of social media initiatives on their website including the popular livemint radio by Kamla Bhatt, of the Kamla Show fame, has an almost equivalent circulation and traffic of 50,000+/- in their print and online editions.

In the same context, blogger and social media consultant Kiruba Shankar is involved with the podcast show with Business Standard, who opines “Less than 1 per cent of the total news content generated on the newspaper websites is powered by citizen journalists.” [See Exchage4media article below]

Conclusion
1. Print publications in India clearly are at par and even doing a lot better in terms of audiences as compared to their online editions.

2. The clear advantage of online medium such as interactivity, dynamic multimedia content, search engine optimization, user generated content etc. are grossly underleveraged and may be the reason for the for their inability to drive proportionate traffic

3. The stickiness of print publications amongst people interested in financial news is high, which also indicates a slight preference in the favour of newspaper over online editions

4. Also, The Long Tail of online financial media in India may be a reason for this fragmented audience overlay. The leaders w.r.t access to corporate news Moneycontrol.com, Capitalmarket.com, India Infoline, Rediff Business, BSE India, etc. are popular and enjoy a loyal user base as they provide interactive content which an end user can access as per his discretion and requirements – in packets on media bytes & sections – at a time when he pleases to.

What does this mean?
While it is a forgone conclusion that print publications need to pay attention to their web properties and make them profitable by adopting web 2.0 technologies and evangelizing them down to the reporters on field.

Online media, no doubt needs to figure in the media plan of PR professionals in the financial sector, a mix of both print and online would be the ideal in achieving the desired mindshare.

Notes
You may visit the following links for further details:
Why print dailies are so conservative in their online editions
[Exchange4Media] [March 12 2009]

Growth for Newspapers Online? Yes and No.
[Brian Solis PR2.0]
[Jan 28 2009]

Word of advise
These figures are from reliable industry sources and free web analytics tools. So there may be a little noise while reporting the figures and must be understood in this context. Nonetheless, these trends, act as guidelines to the broader picture.

News feeds subscription to the online editions have not been factored which again may cloud the figures as some people may choose to read their news in feed readers rather than visit the website.

Collaborative efforts to refine the findings of this analysis are most welcome. Write to me at hemantmorajkar [at] gmail[dot] com or tweet me @HemantM

This is a chronicle of my experiments with social media, web 2.0 and digital communications which details industry updates and analysis from India and around the world

Mea Culpa: Lessons learnt from a blogging break

As a social media practitioner and a communications person, I often find myself advising people to stay connected and contribute to the broader blogosphere and the micro blog community in which they exist. Which indicates, that one must keep publishing fresh work, filled with insight, opinions, views, and just about everything under the sun at regular time periods.

The advantage is not only that you retain your reader’s interest but also, search engines love updated content and crawl your property often.

By default and not design, if you noticed, the last post I have written on this blog is Feb 1 2009!!
It’s just a matter of hectic scheduling and work-life priorities which kept me from crushing plastic with flesh.

Also, I did not wish to give in and add to the “lazysphere” by merely adding commentary to the current happenings and trending topics. Don’t get me wrong am not as dead against it as Steve Rubel, but I see his point of view. Especially when I am forced to drudge through mediocrity to get to a great piece of work. But, then who doesn’t!! And if you look closer, 50% of content (may be higher) is merely a re-hash of other people’s stuff.

So here are a few lessons I learnt by not blogging for a month from a social media practioner’s point of view:

1) Feeling of disconnect – I suddenly feel disconnected from the while blogging expereince. Obsessive bloggers claim to have withdrawal like symtoms akin to withdrawal symtoms felt by an addict while discontinuing drug usage. In the first 10 minutes I found it difficult to reconnect with my blogging roots. I realize it’s taking me a lot longer to compose this post.

2) Feeling od detachment – This may be a good thing now, that I suddenly feel detached from my blog. Something which I was vehemently posseeive about a while earlier. Well…it’s all coming back now!!

3) Embassement – Now this one is obvious. Do I need explain more??

4) Writing – Not that I consider my work here, a Shakesperean effort, but I do miss the writing and articulation of ideas as they float through my head.

5) Referencing towards better understanding – I know this one’s sounds a little complicated, but it’s quite simple really. I link and reference content which I have gone through and taken the time to understand. By not blogging, I an just skimming the surface of data that comes my way and leave it in the “later box” for a revisit

6) ‘Link Love’ and Comments – Not much link love or comments here yet, but yeah we do write for an audience don’t we…

P.S. The term blogging break returns about 7,420,000 results on Google

Update 1: March 09 2009 18:10 – Just came across a re blog tool by Zemanta. Where you can jusy Talk about Aiding and abating the laziness. 😛 We have moved to a slothosphere with this!!!

This is a chronicle of my experiments with social media, web 2.0 and digital communications which details industry updates and analysis from India and around the world

Full Monty, Not Quite: Social Media disclosure policies

The myth of complete disclosure while engaging on behalf of clients or self in Indian social media prevails. We all mean good and some of us do follow the guidelines. But if you take a closer look, you’ll find that we are secretive and deeply mistrusting

I was reading an interesting link post which is a collections of social media policy adopted by organizations and individuals.

I am to come across such broad policy and guidelines issued by Indian corporates. If I stand corrected do leave a link.

With the inclusion of NDA ‘s – Non Disclosure Agreement, for the uninitiated – in the scope of work contracts of most social media firms, there is little known on the “how” and “under what parameters” of what is being implemented in the Indian space.

I am not sure if social media usage policy and guidelines figure on the priority list of most practitioners or if it is merely a passing thought.

This is a chronicle of my experiments with social media, web 2.0 and digital communications which details industry updates and analysis from India and around the world