Thursday, January 04, 2007

In my own way....

When something troubles me, and refuses to leave my head even after chewing over it alone, and with friends for almost a month, it is time to put it down here. A simple story, which I cannot remedy, and probably cannot compare to countless tragedies around, but something that made me question the professionalism of a leading company.

A person very close to me is doing management in marketing from a recognized college, though not a great one.
At the beginning of her second year/third semester, companies were invited for campus itnerviews and placements.
It was a lovely day on which I got a missed call from a familiar number, and on calling back, I could hardly hear her voice above everyone cheering and apparently congratulating her. "Hey, know what? I got placed in Hutch!"
"What's your designation? Where will you be posted?"
"I don't know yet. We have been asked to visit their office next week, on thursday, to get our offer letters."
"Gosh, I am so happy. How many of you got through?"
"Only two of us - me and a guy."

Thursday had to be postponed by a couple of weeks because of impending semester exams around the same time, and after getting a medical test done as instructed by a mail from Hutch a couple of days later, she landed up at the Hutch office, in a city separate than where she was studying, at 9 AM one morning along with her classmate. What followed was a long wait.
Her classmate was soon given an offer letter, to work in the field, i.e. a semi travelling job.
When she enquired, she was told that they did not know what to do with her as she was a girl !!!!!! They cannot put her in the field, and they do not know if she can be absorbed elsewhere.
On further probing, they said that she might need to be interviewed once more, this time by the person whom she would be reporting to, and that person was on leave. And...they did not know when that person was to be back from leave...amazing!
So, she barely managed to get the last train home after that, and still managed to retain the cheery and optimistic outlook....optimistic enough to hope that they will contact her college.

Two weeks went by with no news, and it seems they still could not say when her would-be-boss will be back from leave.

Finally, when the college ultimately called up to ask what to do with her, as her fate was left hanging indeterminably, they replied, "Oh we don't have any vacancy for the post that she wants!"

Hello, which post did she want? Wasn't it you Hutch people who decided not to put her in some post and try her for some other post?

Lots of questions come to mind:
1. Didn't the person/persons sent for the campus interviews know what they were supposed to look out for, for e.g. the job is not suited to girls, so do not take girls, etc.?
2. Even if they found out that it had been a mistake, couldn't they call up the next day and inform the college about it?
3. Even after that, when she lands up at their office, couldn't they be honest with her?

It seems this is not the first time, even last year, they had done the same thing to another girl.
The college keeps allowing them to come back, coz they pick up at least one student for employment...heh

I wish I could sue them.
I wish lodging a case could be of less hassle (though with the number of useless cases against celebrities, you would be forgiven if you believe that Indian judicial system is easily accessible and cases got solved in a month).
I wish I could really sue them for
- unprofessional behaviour
- unethical practices
- sexual discrimination
- missed opportunities while waiting for the offer letter
- re-imbursement of all travelling expenditure
- mental harrassment and trauma
- and for destroying the confidence of a person who was born to be in the marketing department, and is always bubbling up with confidence and a cheerful smile.

At least, that would warn them...but would it?
Or would it be regarded as another ridiculous court case in a country where my parents had to attend court for two years to make a realtor pay back their money, even after the cheque that he gave them had bounced and there was clear evidence that he had stolen their money?

Well, I probably will never know till I do it.
But in my own way, I can at least blog about it....