17 September 2015

God's Own Office by James Joseph

It's yet another usual busy day for me at work. After finishing my deliverables for the day, I was all set to leave in office shuttle and was eager to reach home early in order to spend quality time with my family. Unfortunately, a slight drizzle that evening took the traffic condition out of gear as many people tried to leave office at the same time. Our BMTC Volvo shuttle took at least 45 minutes to cover one km distance which one could cover 5-10 minutes on foot. Sitting in the shuttle, I was partially relieved that I was not driving in my car on that day. On other hand, alternate thoughts were running in my mind: Was this all required? Why have we concentrated thousands of professionals in tech/business parks? Do we really need to have so many migrants from other parts of Karnataka and other parts of India? Seriously, it's no more the Bangalore in which I grew up and spent my formative years.

With these partial negative thoughts in my mind switched to reading the new book in my Kindle -"God's own office" by James Joseph. I was 50% done with the book and the traffic jam on that day was perfect opportunity to complete the book before I get to home.

In the book, James narrates his story of being a professional in many multi-national corporations in various geographies - India, US, Europe, a few ups and down both due personal as well as external situations. Then at the peak of his career at Microsoft(India), he takes a plunge into something unconventional i.e. working from his home at outskirts in Kochi, in other words, setting up God's Own Office in which vacation is just 90 degrees away !

Vacation is just 90 degrees away

The author also goes through self-evaluation of his off-beat decision and brings forward the ifs and buts of various things. He explains how it's good to attend a meeting at various offices in other cities by taking early morning flight on virtue of staying Kochi airport than his colleagues who have tough time traveling from their homes in Tier-1 cities.  He also narrates his quality time spent in morning hours by having a stroll in serene backdrop than having time-consuming transit from home to the office in a Tier-1 city. There many more similar things. Grab your own copy to experience the story in detail!

What James managed to do can be emulated by others?  Will it lead to the trend of having our own offices in hometowns? What are the roadblocks? The truth is that no simple answer and it all depends on several things. Let's try out unconventional things by taking a leaf out of this book!

A few interesting excerpts from the book.
Living in another country is like living at your in-law's house, do come home when you have learned enough.

You can take advice from all mentors, but the decision on when to make the move towards your next phase should be yours. Do it only when you are ready. Always remember, 'When an egg is broken from within, a new life begins, but when it is broken from outside, a life is lost.'

Take children to funerals, not just weddings. If they were living in their native place, kids would see an equal number of funerals and accept death as natural process.