Saturday 10 August 2013

Big Fish in Small Pond or Small Fish in Big Pond

In our age, leading a generally dissatisfied work-life is quite common. Mostly this stems out of mismatch between what one expects to do / learn / earn and what that person actually does / learns / earns. There are other parameters that play a role as well - competition, both within the organisation and with friends out side the organisation / imperfect ability to manage work-life balance / supposedly poor & partial boss etc. I have been there, I have felt the frustration, I have allowed my professional frustration to eat into my personal peace...but the key to note here is: "have been".

As most management students prepare for work life, there are certain organisations / industries that come up as most sought after...for various / societal pat on the back / stature etc. For me - the reasons were not too different...along with money / stature - I wanted to work for organisations that made my parents take pride in to see where their son had reached.

Before completing 4th year of my work life, I was already in my third job - spending 22 moths and 20 months in my previous two jobs respectively - essentially running away on one pretext or the other. Within 9 months of my third job, I had put in my papers!

A friend helped me understand that most of my frustrations were coming from being ignored and my views going unheard. Also, how the same person could become big and small depending up on where he decides to fit. My friend's intention was to make me see that it was probably time for me to look at smaller ponds, where I would have a say - where my opinion would matter and where my work would mean something.

Having spent nearly 4.5 years in big ponds, I started seeking a small pond! Didn't take long to find one and now, I have been in the same small pond for 6.5 years...yes! Been working at one place, building it from scratch, taking it places...going places along with it.

The idea of writing this post is to share with all that it is helpful to know what kind of fish you are and which size of pond do you feel most comfortable operating in. There isn't any correct / incorrect answer to this...just that this kind of self-realisation goes a long way to improve the quality of life we lead. It is because of this self-realisation that today we see an unprecedented increase in number of entrepreneurs in India, most of them coming from middle-class background, giving wings to their dreams!

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