Monday, June 26, 2017

Celebration Strategies and Saying Thank You

Jeff Bazos is a business titan who took the initiative to implement the retailing book business into a new dimension using Internet and world wide web. This description is just enough for an IT person to guess, who I'm talking about.

Yes, it's non other than the popular e-tailing or electronic retailing website 's Jeff Bazos. Amazon was a simple garage startup at the beginning, which later turned into the largest bookstore in the world. And now their line of business, not only in books, but also exploded into more other innovative areas.

Well this post is not directly about Bazos or his Amazon. There are lot of stuff in the Internet sphere to learn about them. Here I'm going to mention about a wonderful concept about increasing motivation in a work space, specifically in a such kind of service based working environment where workforce is directly interact with the customers.

Now don't get mad for going around so many tracks, talking about something and switch suddenly onto another topic. You'll later realize how each are conceptually interconnected.

This must be the 2nd batch I'm teaching the subject e-business, and both the two times I used to sit with the students to watch a documentary on BBC about Amazon which was aired in 2014. "Business Boomers - Amazon's Retail Revolution". [Edit: This post initially started on sometime ago]

So the last time when I watched it with the students, I caught up with this strategy, an Amazon's earliest employee was talked about. A bell, which rings when each time a sell is occurred. And he says it was later turned off due to continuous ringing which becomes a nuisance to everyone.

It was only few months before to that I had watched this movie called "The Intern". It was talking about an intern who joins with a online retailing organization founded by a young hard-working lady, a caring wife, a mother and a boss. And this intern, the subject topic, is not a person as you usually think; a youthful character. It was a senior citizen internship program. Crazy idea, ha? He is a senior citizen, a retired old fellow who worked in the same building, in a company located in the same premises long time back, with a traditional ordinary occupation. Couldn't imagine what would the mood will be when you see the same old places which you had spent most of your life with, that can be loaded up with full of memories. But now, everything got changed. The people, building and even the atmosphere. Like in twenty years ago.

Anyway now in this movie, it uses the same bell strategy to announce an achievement. I think it's a sweet idea to collaboratively celebrate an achievement with others, rather than using personal emails or meetings which is too much isolated and being robotic. This way is instant and much humane and much fun and much celebration. If MasteringX would ever grow virtually or physically in small-scale, I'd love to adapt this strategy.

So now on I will call this as bell strategy. I think this kind of a celebration is much important to improve the working engagement motivation.

Upto now I have Stack Exchanges for English, Mathematics and Programming.  So happy to see how community supports to find answers for your problems just to receive virtual badges and stuff.

It is the same concept you see in stack overflow. The motivation to; ask questions, answer questions, comment on questions, rate questions, rate answers and thumbs up comments; with the sole purpose of earning points and badges.

I remember when I first received a notification mail from my slideshare account, congratulating me that one of my slide was shared (selfie effect literature review) for the first time, saying now I'm now in the league. It wowed me for all through the day. That was a celebration. Maybe it was not a big deal. But receiving such a thing without an expectation is shocking wow. And that's the social media strategy to make engage more. If I be more precise, "make you addictive". Slideshare every doc you created which could publicize.

The growth of my MasteringX. The happiness is seeing the increasing number of views with the revenue in each month.

And same goes if you are a YouTube creator. You should be really careful about the views, number of thumb ups-downs and analytics. That's the motivation factor. The next video depends on that. May be your income depends on that. With my current experience (without SEO) it's so fun to see that you got more views and more thumb-ups month after month even they are not in kilos.

Reason (a) : The thought of people had searched for that subject topic and you had hit the venue somehow.
Reason (b) : The thought of people really cared to say thank you and spent a one click for you.

It would become more awesome when you got complements as comments. Comments are specially important when your channel is about academics. I meant a real thank yous, suggestions and even criticisms. The thought of people had spent some keystrokes specifically for you. And I now know why Prof. Randy Pausch had spoked about thank you notes. Even though he was talked about hand written thank you words, unexpected digital ones seems fine for me if the words comes through their inner soul. You can recognize that when you read it (So don't copy!!!!).  I still remember the very first real thank you comment I received for my e-business lecture video in MasteringX portal and how it wowed me all through the day. And yes, obviously, thank you's received as emails from students from your offline classes and the feeling of 'you did something'. Not only that, feel so much awesomely happy when seeing the number of thumb ups and views and comments for my precious video clip "Harsha Bogle in luck" which I extracted from the speech he delivered at IIM. I shared it because I found something on his words, and seeing that others also found something on it and benefitted themselves of my sharing, gives you an amazing celebration.

With final remarks my advice is, incorporate celebration strategies on whatever you do, and say unexpectedly thank you. These things allows others to celebrate. An intentional click or intentional keystrokes may means a lot.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Coward Of The Big Country

I've got completed another two movies of Gregory Peck's movie marathon. "The Gunfighter" (1950) and "The Big Country" (1958). Gunman was not a big deal, but I guess I have something to talk about " The Big Country ", because I felt that there is some link; a similarity; between my all time another favorite hit by Kenny Rogers', " The coward of the county". Kenny..! I have talked about his "20 years ago" in a previous post.

Big country was a Western classic. About cowboys, horses, drink and Guns. And also, the dessert, water, ranches and sunny hot days. I'm seriously wonder how those country folks could live there without trees. And dust all over with wind. And specially how they wearing those heavy cloths all day with that kind of a temperature. 

I guess it's the same environment that we have with our Nuwara Kala Viya area. But thanks to our ancient Kings and officers and people, we have our own man made water reservoir system that still can be used in those areas without only depending on natural resources. So I guess we do not see that dull brownish sunny look which have captured by the camera lenses in big country there, on our country. We still have the stocks of blue and green into some extent. But if we don't get much careful, the stocks would be soon get over and it would first hit on rajarata nuwara kala Viya area.

I have never been able to spend my time to breathe the breeze of Nuwara kalawiya till it get sunken into my lungs, heart and brain yet. You can never do that by just only spending few hours in there, because most of us spending most of those hours around ruins and lakes. But I have got this precious book which says most of the things about Nuwara kalawiya and its people and the life of its 80s; the tragic days. "Vav bandi rajjaye sawaariyak" by Edmund Jayasuriya. If you can read it by heart then you can certainly feel the colorful breeze to somewhat extent. 

Okay, now back to the big country and county coward. Gregory Peck aka McKay was a newcomer to this county. He's gonna marry the county's high class leader Major Terrill's daughter, Patricia, who he met in the city. County is divided into two sides, Poor class and High class. Poor side lives like savages, beyond a canyon. They are uneducated, but work to the word. They have a leader too, Hannassey. Straight, proud and powerful. But his son and son's two other companions are high nuisance to the whole county. Peck's fiancée have a wonderful teacher friend who has not taken any side of them. She inherited a water way land, which they called "muddy", from her grandfather who was always the peacemaker between the two sides. Muddy was what each sides are fighting for but she is not selling it to any of the sides but offer both of the sides to use the water very willingly. 

So for our McKay, on his first day to the county, he met with the Hannassey boys and had some trouble in front of his girl. He take it as a joke and nothing else. But she take it as serious harassment and her farther too. Major got a obedient servant foreman youth called Leech.  Leech has a eye on Patricia. Major and Leech and their clan ran after the Hannassey boys. As they were no where to find, they do some damage to the Hennessey's area. And that's where fight start to go out of the limits. 

Leech was a strong man. He doesn't like the intervention of McKay to the county. Specially because of Patricia. He always try to bring up McKay into a fight to show he is the strongest one here and to show McKay was not belongs here as well as to show Patricia McKay was not suitable for her. But our McKay has a different personality. He repeatedly refuses to go with fights when he was invited. When Leech challenged him to ride on a troublesome horse called Old Thunder in front of others, he refused. But secretly with a lot of hard effort he do it. Only the horse worker Ramon sees this, but McKay kept it as a secret between him. 

With this repeated refusals to prove his manhood, everyone in the household sees him as a coward, including Patricia. But McKay do not need to prove his manhood to others. His principle was to prove it to himself alone. He do not care what other people think about him, because of his thinking, he is not responsible for what people thinks, but what he is. This theory is only understood by the teacher friend Julie. He wanted to buy the "Muddy" from her to develop and live in there with Patricia. And also wanted to keep the same policy about the water, unrestricted access to the water for both sides. Julie agrees. But Patricia had other plans about the land like as her father. So the engagement breaks off.

Before that McKay alonely goes on a journey around the big country. He was repeatedly advised he would get lost. But he was not considered it. He had a plan in his mind no one knew. It was the journey to persuade Julie to sell the land for him. After the talking with Julie, he was little bit late to be back home. So a search party goes with Leech thinking he was lost. But McKay came back all in one piece and told the search party he was never in danger. Affairs between Leech and McKay suddenly goes to the top with a quarrel for making all the trouble. McKay didn't need a fight. He refuses the fight in front of Pat and others, making her all disappointed. Early next morning, before anyone was awake, McKay calls Leech for the fight to settle the quarrel. No one was presented to witness it, as it was too much early and held in a barren land. It was ended up both being exhausted. It was a draw. At the end McKay asked Leech what was they proved by this fight. This makes Leech's understanding of McKay into a whole new level. He started to respect him for his thoughts.

At the end....... Well it's up to you. Check it out what happened to the Mckay and Julie. It's up to you to find out, did he ever fight again to prove his manhood.

Well don't you think the story is same like the song of Kenny Rodger's "Coward of the County" released in 1979. McKay being relived again with Tommy. I was get into know this song was inspired for a TV movie with the same title. And Kenny was acting as the uncle as the song says. The plot of the movie is true to the song lyrics.

Anyway, enjoy and feel the similarity...

Everyone considered him the coward of the county
He'd never stood one single time to prove the county wrong.
His mama named him Tommy, but folks just called him yellow,Something always told me they were reading Tommy wrong.
He was only ten years old when his daddy died in prison;
I took care of Tommy, 'cause he was my brother's son.
I still recall the final words my brother said to Tommy,
"Son my life is over, but yours has just begun".
"Promise me, son, not to do the things I've done
Walk away from trouble if you can.
It won't mean you're weak if you turn the other cheek
I hope you're old enough to understand,
Son, you don't have to fight to be a man."
There's someone for everyone, and Tommy's love was Becky.
In her arms he didn't have to prove he was a man.
One day while he was working, the Gatlin boys came calling
They took turns at Becky, n'there was three of them).
Tommy opened up the door, and saw Becky crying.
The torn dress, the shattered look was more than he could stand.
He reached above the fireplace, and took down his daddy's picture.
As the tears fell on his daddy's face, he heard these words again:
The Gatlin boys just laughed at him when he walked into the barroom;
One of them got up and met him half way cross the floor.
When Tommy turned around they said, "Hey look! old yeller's leaving,"
But you could've heard a pin drop when Tommy stopped and locked the door.
Twenty years of crawling were bottled up inside him.
He wasn't holding nothing back he let 'em have it all.
When Tommy left the bar room, not a Gatlin boy was standing.
He said, "This one's for Becky, as he watched the last one fall. (And I heard him say, )
"I promised you, Dad, not to do the things you've done
I walk away from trouble when I can
Now please don't think I'm weak, I didn't turn the other cheek,
And papa, I should hope you understand
Sometimes you gotta fight when you're a man".
Everyone considered him the coward of the county.