Saturday, July 12, 2008

Salaam Infosys..

Well 11th July is a date that would always be a special one in my mind...for one reason is that had I not resigned to pursure my MBA, I would have finished 3 complete years in this wonderful organisation called Infosys. It has taught me things far more than what I can express but the least I can do is to salute it with a blog.

Well to begin with, my bond with Infosys started in June 2004 with this dream company coming to our campus for placements. All young bright minds dressed to look best made their way through heavy rains , puddles, potholes to the placement room. Few quick quizzes, a small chat and a one day wait..that was all that was required to hear the most awaited words "Welcome aboard to Infosys". What a sigh of relief it was to get placed a year before your graduation.

The last year of graduation just zipped by and the college days, the fun days ended...leaving us at the door of this big corporate world. Just a minute..did I say end of fun days..well not really.... Infosys began as a college outside the college. I had a huge bunch of friends 11 of us with just 22 pieces of luggages, who set off on this wonderful journey. Thanx to some of the most innovative money saving ideas that my freind had, we had booked a 3 tier non ac compartment which was soon filled by our attrocious decibel levels. 24 hours of this train journey from Mumbai to bangalore followed by 4 hours to Mysore brought us to the extremly heavenly paradise called the training centre.

No one who knows even a bit about Infosys needs to be described about this "name-it-and-you-have-it" Mysore campus. The amazing trainings, the late night assignments, the gym ,the sports club, the awesomely comfortable beds in the room, the cycles in the was a home outside home. Whoever has worked in Infosys but not trained in Mysore has probably missed the best welcome that any corporate could ever offer.

I was lucky to have worked in great teams. As a fresher life was so simple. It was so easy to make mistakes and blame it on inexperience. Working late nights before project deadlines was fun. Litres of caffeine was gulped down the throat to keep the eyes from shutting. Coding was an experience of a lifetime. It is great to see days n months of code being translated into something as big as an online banking site for a big American bank. As I grew to a team leader, I realised what kept Infosys going..the young and fresh talent packed with enthusiasm to create something big. As i worked with freshers i was amazed to see their energy and passion that they put in the work. More often I see people mocking at the kind of recruitment spree that Infosys has taken up in past few years...but who cares...they take the best talent and continue to be the best in India.

What makes Infosys so special is its culture. We screamed, shouted, gave birthday bumps , cut cakes , sometimes had stupendously long lunch breaks, wasted a complete day in something as stupid as a cubicle decoration competetion. Never ever were questioned by anybody. The cubicle was a place to discuss things from Bollywood to politics..from MBA talks to onsite opportunities....from stock markets to certifications. The motto was bloody hard and party like crazy.

Well I would be lying if I said i never cursed Infosys. The hottest season was the appraisal season. Everyone had a spiced up story to tell after his/her appraisal discussion and how no one appreciated the hard work, how crappy the appraisal system was. We have spent hours giggling on the fact that same feedback was given to the entire team like: improve communicatin skills, be more assertive..blah blah..a fact that all Infy PMs will deny and all SE's will support :). The next in line would probably be April and the topic of the month would be how pathetic the hike was and how it was unfair that freshers were getting almost the same as the experienced lot..another hyped up false conclusion. Next was the "Last Day at Infosys" season from Jun to Aug for people opting for higher studies. We even used to bet on the number of mails that wud hit our inboxes in a week or a day. But the best of all was November or the jaundice season ( better known as the CAT jaundice in Infosys). It was sadd to hear how people fell ill (read: studied hard for CAT) from Nov 1 to Nov 20 only to look even more healthier and fatter when they rejoined. :). Other petty things such as "how hard we are made to work", "how inconsiderate the onsite is","how much the foodcourt sucks","how crammed the cubicle was", "how stupid of the client to remove us from Infosys netowrk and make us work on the bank netowork" were topics to be sulked upon perenially.

Whatever it is, it is a great place to be in. It is said that it is easy to get in Infosys than to get out. Founded by Indias most respected people, the values on which it was built on 25 years ago still permeate even to the lowest level. Close to three years in Infosys have transformed from a college graduate into a person ready to take on bigger challenges in life. Infosys has brought me a long way from Mumbai to Mysore to Bangalore to Pune and then to Mexico. My dreams and ambitions might have taken me away from here but the memories of the first pay, the first project delivery, the first project party, the first appraisal, the first goof up, the first client interaction, these and many more of such firsts will always remain special...Hope that it grows in leaps and bounds.


Santosh said...

Hi Gauri,

I read your blog, your narration is excellent and i would suggest you to write some books. Good work Gauri!!


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