Wednesday, October 05, 2005

If you got IT, flaunt IT !




The IT COM ( now rechristened IT.IN ) will soon be upon us and I remember the very first such event I attended in Bangalore a couple of weeks ago. Just a fresher in college, quite wet behind the years and to make things worse I was doing Internship for an IT company! Now working for an IT company is great.....but during IT Com , I wish I could take a sabbatical, contract typhoid, Chicken Pox or whatever else it will take to keep me away from office during the run up to the event and for the duration of the event itself.

It is at this time of the year that most departmental heads suddenly get very creative and start dropping by my cubicle ‘oh-so-casually’, with ideas, suggestions and brilliant brainwaves that if implemented would definitely get us the “Most Grotesque Stall” award for the year 2005.

Consider this:

RK: Why don’t we have a waterfall and pool in the stall?
Me: Sure and I guess you want all of us to lounge around the pool in string bikinis too?


AN: I say we have thermocol cutouts of our products all around the stall.
Me: Sure and when a visitor wants a demo, I guess you will make the sputtering noises for that device?

SK: The testing team needs to be adequately represented at our stall!
Me: Ok, how about your entire team standing in the stall dressed as bug exterminators?

PP: Now Customer Support is a vital function and should be highlighted this year at our stall!!!
Me: Sure give me the list of all those customers you avoid and I will send them a personal invite.

And the suggestions never stop. Thank fully there is a centralized decision making team that makes the final decisions like how many passes each one of us will get and who gets to go around checking out the guys/gals at the other stalls, who gets to go for the free dinners and lunches and who gets to shred the resumes that pile up etc etc.

This is also that time of the year that my team and me are told, not to waste our time doing anything other than Exhibition work. By anything, I mean time wasting activities like breathing in, breathing out, blinking, eating, thinking, diggin nose/crotch ( whichever applicable), going home, sleeping etc.etc. In fact I am told that these qualities are very necessary to become a manager in my company. You should see my HR manager. He looks absolutely breathless all the time!!!! And my Big Boss looks positively blue in the face 24/7.

Now Resume collection and shredding is a vital function at all IT exhibitions. Resumes are collected with gusto by a pre selected person who looks as sincere as Dharam Singh promising to do something about Bangalore’s crumbling infrastructure. This person will take your resume like he is being handed the Bible/Gita/Koran and place it with reverence in a box. At the end of the day, each stall compares the number of resumes collected and the winning stall gets dirty looks and the losers prepare to look even more sincere the next day so that they could be the next winners. The collected resumes are then shredded to make way for the next day’s collection. So I request all employment seekers to exhibitions, especially freshers to please stick your resume with gum that is if it has more than one page. STAPLE PINS AND OTHER METAL PINS CAN DAMAGE PAPER SHREDDERS!!!! So please be careful.

Another vital function of people manning stalls is to answer important questions with aplomb! Check these scintillating conversations out.

Visitor: So you make software
Me: Well...yes....
Visitor: So, how many softwares do you make in a month?

Visitor No 2: So what do you make?
Me: We make Enterprise Solutions, Government solutions, Communication Network, other Products and Services......
Visitor No 2: Wokay, wokay thank you, where is the toilet?

Visitor No 3: So how much does your software cost?
Me: er....what line of business are you in sir?
Visitor No 3: I am a contractor
Me: So you undertake turnkey projects? In which case I would suggest you speak to.....
Visitor No 3: naah, I am a labour contractor.
Me: er... so what do you want to do with a software solution?
Visitor No.3: (shrugging) Oh nothing, chumma I asked.

And all this after you have prepared a good two months for the event and have stood for hours in the stall with every muscle in your body aching and screaming for rest.

I am so not looking forward to the coming IT.In :(

46 comments:

പാപ്പാന്‍‌/mahout said...

Good read, as usual :)
[An aside: A long, long time ago, during any exhibition in Delhi, polythene bags were the thing to die for during any exhibition (don't ask me why). So at any stall, one of the most-heard questions was "lifaafaa hai kya?" ("Do you have polythene bags?")]

Nagu said...

come on Anjali...IT.in is most funniest event that takes place. u r making fun of it!. i think i can see more posts straight from the IT.IN enjoy the fun..LOL

silverine said...

@mahout: LOL yes, here they ask for brochures with 'nice pictures' and freebies LOL
@nagu: Yes, I guess I will gather more stories this year :))

Jiby said...

lol...had a nice laugh. i have nice memories of kerala's IT Expo 2000 when an unfortunate company hired us for Rs.1000 a day for 3 days to man their stalls and market their products.

We finally ended up shouting like lottery vendors ..."Online Education, first time in India...Online Education, first time in India"...then a really distinguished looking man came to me and said..."So is this virtual education??"...I thought for a second and answered "Yes"...his next quip..."So it is not a real education!"...I gave him a most dayaneeya look and he walked away smiling.

but our crude college "numbers" won a lot of praise for being the most spirited and "rowdy" stall.....a few months afterwards the company shut down as we had predicted! great post...i wish i had so many ideas to blog and so much humor to convey like u never seem to run out of.

silverine said...

@jiby; You "ullasa.." blog had me laughing for a good half an hour and then Aruns contribtion too. It was so hilarious!!!

The phoneys and the simpletons who come for IT expos will need and entire year to document and blog :)) But your idea of shouting like bus conductors takes the cake :))

zimblymallu said...

Hey, i like that idea with the swimming pool and the bikinis.

so what are they giving out for free at IT.in this year? refrigerator magnets? demo cds? or is it going to be pens all over the place?

hey mr. nagu black rider of the matrix, i'm still trying to figure out what you meant by your first two sentences.

Meesa Madhavan said...

"Oh Nothing..Chumma I asked"
I read and laughed for an hour, funniest thing I read in an year..Keep them coming


MM

Lost in trance... said...

this in a place wer ppl eat drink n sleep IT !
cant imagine how i'd stop laffing my guts ou if i were in your position...thx for a gud laff :)


(Anjali?)

Alexis Leon said...

Nice post. Had a good laugh. But it is not that bad. I had many genuine customers and good conversations. The resume collection part is true though.

silverine said...

@zimblymallu:Yes freebies are in great demand. Many visitors think they are at a Consumer Expo lol
@lostintrance: Yes we do have a good laugh and fighting to keep a straight face is so difficult in these situations :))
@meesamadhavan:They should ban technically challenged people from IT expo's :))
@Alexis: Yes. A lot of business does take place and we also get genuine enquiries. But then you wouldn't want me to write all that boring stuff here right? :))

Matter of Choice said...

hmmmm...

another rofl post i see...that too when i havent even recovered from the stomach cramps that u gave me with the last post :)

cheerio
anish

Geo said...

We had a tech fest CETEX 2000 when we were in college. All of us were deployed in different stalls like Unix, Win2K, Games, Networking etc etc... Win2K was a big hit then as it just got released and people hadn’t seen it installed on machines. That stall had rush all the time. Luckily seniors were always present to clear all technical doubts (we were just innocent sophomores, u know). One day as luck would have it, the stall was manned by just 3 of my classmates, whose computer dexterity ends at finishing all the latest games in 2 days and filling up hard disks with mp3s and dats. A decent looking gent approached the stall, and asked my friend what were the advantages of Win2K. My friend was like... "Sir, look at the wall paper sir...how nice graphics...rite? And they have a new screen saver exclusively for 2K... awesome!!" The visitor grew impatient and asked again "I asked abt the advantages". My friend thought hard but couldn’t remember any of the points which the seniors heard repeated umpteen number of times... Finally what he did was.... He opened notepad.. typed something spanning multiple lines... hit Ctrl-A ..aila.. all the text got selected. He proudly turned back to the visitor and announced. "Sir, see... in Win98, u need to select 'Select All' from 'Edit' menu to select all the text. But in Win2K, you just need to press Ctrl-A".

(I know this is not worth the long description. You will appreciate it only when you actually hear it coming form a graduate student of computer science from one of the state’s prestigious technical institutes)

Jithu said...

nice one.. they bring in revenues and job opportunities u knw!

Geo> Wasnt that student, U?

Casablanca said...

Ok that was hilarious!
ROTF
:D

Ammo said...

"Visitor: So, how many softwares do you make in a month?"

Was this guy/gal at the exhibition thinking its got to do something with inner-wears ???

Good post and funny too, esp. me being from the IT sector, not surprised with the set of questions you've faced.

lash said...

notification silverine..there's a new bloggin policy for companies which deter employees from any UNHOLY POSTS against their senior staffs.. HR in particular..be careful .. a few ppl already ve lost their jobs in England

said...

Hi, back here after long time :-)

All your recent posts are real nice reads. I guess clueful people do not come to events like IT.[com|in], they directly contact the sales/marketing channel.

Safari Al said...

can i simply say...retarted???


why is bangalore like this....????



nice one btw!

injinuity said...

hey those are trade secrets.. the resumes being shredded.... shhhhhhhhhhhh.

Praveen said...

LOL, absolutely loved what you had to say to each statement that "RK","AN","SK" and "PP" made :).

Jagan said...

no wonder u r so busy ..

Jagan said...

forgot to say - the bikini idea was cool .. i am coming there to watch the babes ;-)

>|' ; '| said...

sounds like IT.COM is a mega-farce...
:-)

silverine said...

@matterofchoice:Thanks;)
@geo:That was so funny. I have done my stint at various IT COMS when I wuz in college so I know the difficulty when someone suddenly asks you a difficult question.
@Jithu: Really?? Didn't know that;)
@casablanca: Nice of you to drop by. We are mostly rofl at the queries we receive by casual visitors.
@ammo:These guys think that software is produced by the dozen everyday lol
@safari al: Actually a lot of serious business takes place at IT COM, but it is the casual visitors who make life miserable with their queries like the ones I have highlighted here.
@Koushik: Yes, this event is more like a networking gateway for IT companies.
@injinuity: oops, guess I let the cat out of the bag :)
@Jagan: Unfortunately, I turned down the pool in the stall idea, so no mermaids for you to see :(
@poison: It is not a farce, it is actually a serious affair. I was merely highlighting the people who come to this event thinking it is a consumer expo or because they have a free pass :))

Adarsh A. Varghese said...

Good one! Well some of us during our schooldays used to go in for all of these fairs and exhibitions connected with comps, pretended to be sons of millionaires who are very very interested in what they have to offer, give the salesman lot of practice and in the end walk out with a flourishing "We'll be Back".

By the way, I have tagged you with the 55 word story tag.

Jagan said...

i hate u for turning down tht idea ..
this will be reflected in ur appraisal ..

Sonia said...

So IT.IN makes u feel the same way as i feel about Gitex huh? best of luck girl!

~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...

hey ..
i like visitor no. 2 a lot !!! heh heh heh !!!

n yes , liked ur idea for a baygon ad ...

tc

~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...

just read the brother post !!!!

i agree .. they can be big pains down u-know-where !!!!

btw, whoz Anjali ? [ courtesy nagu's comment ]

pr!tz said...

JUST READ YOUR TAG IN MY BLOG....

EXCELLENT WORK! The best response I got so far!!

Keep it flying high!

monu said...

LOL :))

superb .....especialy the visitor questions which happens at every exhibition hall including GITEX .. :))

~*. D E E P A .* ~ said...

yes dear ...

i understand ....
no probs on that front ....

Dr. Pissed said...

I most definately am looking forward to this years IT.in .. I get to come to your stall and bug the living daycrap out of you!!

And just when your done answering all my questions, I'll introduce you to my friends also .. wohooo..

Pratish Menon said...

Kya re heroine? Went to IDF?

.... said...

Go Bangalore!!! Great blog. I guess these are the small things u miss about bangalore. 3 years back, I accompanied my techie friends to an IT .com thingie and , well, IT was a TOTAL DISASTER lol. Functional chaor, u might say :-)

Joker said...

waiting for the post on the fair proper. oh an i am workingon one right now... which is going to be our signature event...PHEW!!!!! Watch out for posts on that *GRIN*

monu said...

the Ramdan picture in my blog is not entirley my creation ..i did some modfications to that image :)

hope and love said...

great read..ur sense of humor is simply fantastic..

crossblade said...

hmmm...people do ask strange stuff...
Grotesque!! I remember learning the meaning of that word as== comically distorted for my GRE...

ahhh..the perils of being Indian/mallu..you are forced to do a lot of stuff for ur parents...

anyway I'm thankful I dint have to pursue tech education

Mr. J said...

Nice read... And 39 comments?? :O Make it 40 now. Boy you sure seem to be a pro at blogging. And yeh, forgot to mention, Alexis Leon happened to post comments on your blog. Wow! Good going. ;)

Cheers

If I tell ya, I'll have to kill ya said...

Sista, you are FUNNIE....Thanks for dropping by my blog.

Till today, I thot Sidin was the funniest, now I know he's got company.

And man can I relate (being an IT woman myself).

Cheers and keep it coming...

Jo said...

I was there in the last year's IT.com. That was my first time and I got some well-designed brochures too! :-))

Sujit said...

Well I never liked IT.com may be i dont belong to the area it self!!.. But heard its good.. and I think you have a hell of brainstroming sessions.. before your final stall outlook is put forward!!

Sangeetha said...

a really intresting blog, yaar!

Leon said...

You seem to be getting more and more creative by the day!.. ;-) Now that your blog is so popular why don't you take the "edit-mes" off the links. And maybe add a counter?

hotICE said...

hey that was a nice piece.. and about the counter stats too..