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Respond not reactI was really shocked when I saw the IELTS score - 8/9. What was more shocking was that I got 9/9 in the Listening test. Normally I am very poor in getting the foreign accent and that is the main reason I don't see English movies. Infact I feel that I had messed up with my early US Visa attempts because of this 'accent' issue. So I could attribute this score to the lady luck only. I would like to pass of this luck charm to somebody who is taking IELTS. If anybody in Bangalore, who is to take up IELTS in the very near future, wants IELTS material please drop me a mail through contact form. I'll personally give away the IELTS materials DVD, which has a good number of practise tests, to them. Let them also get lucky with that material. Ha! Ha!... Jokes apart, oflate I am managing to get the foreign accents right after I started interacting with my UK clients on the phone, especially my onsite counterpart guy.

Coming to my interaction with onsite counterpart.... One of the best ways to have a smooth going in the projects is to develop a personal rapport with your client / onsite counterpart. Like I had mentioned earlier that I had a terrific personal rapport with Jishore in Dubai project, so things went so fine and comfortable. Unfortunately after I came back despite my efforts Jishore is not in touch anymore, but whatever good times we had in the project, it is for keeps forever. Coming to my current project I had this 10yrs younger guy as my onsite counterpart, who initially used to shoot off the pressure whistle whenever he was pressurised on work. May be because of my understanding of what he undergoes onsite, I never reacted to his outbursts. Slowly slowly he came around and now we are in touch personally in Facebook. This personal rapport helps me in getting more knowledge transfer from him as well as sharing the work load. So my personal lesson is "More than with imemdiate colleagues, having a good rapport with onsite / client counterparts is important for smooth working in large scale projects".

After these incidents, recently I came across an email forward - "Respond.. not react". It started with a small story "A set of young women going to a restaurant causing a chaos when a cockroach lands on one of them. A waiter comes to their place, calmly picks up the cockroach and throws it away from the window." The author analyses the behaviour of the women and the waiter thus coming to a conclusion - Reacting & Responding are different. Reaction comes from stimuli and response comes brain. In otherwords reactions are instinctive while responses are intellectual. Surprisingly I had personally learnt this lesson in a hardway / own experiences.

Respond but not react

Once my former colleague told that my (then) boss said that he could sense changes in my facial expressions (reactions) when he shouts at us (me & colleague) for no reasons. At the time of leaving that company, that boss said that he didn't mean anything while he was shouting at us because it was his nature. Even though I don't want to buy that arguement I feel that if I hadn't reacted instantly things could have been better. Since then I have been trying not to "react" but respond to appropriate things only. So when I came across this article, I remembered my earlier instances and my now rapport with my onsite counterpart. Had I reacted for his "pressure venting" mails, things would have got awkward.

I am learning applying this concept in my personal life too. One day in last week, my wife was unusually rude. She might have her concerns like - we might hadn't make love properly previous night or I made her wake up much earlier as we had to go somewhere. Instead of reacting, after some time, I asked her in a soft voice that why certain statements / words were used or what was the necessity to use such words? Like everybody she said that she didn't mean them. Had I started reacting immediately equally, my neighbours would have had a great time. Thank God for making better sense prevail. Responding... not reacting - If this works well for me so why can't it do the same for you people also?


Speaking of Jishore... he is celebrating his 3rd wedding anniversary this 9th May. So let me wish him all the very best for the years to come in his marriage bliss!!!