Bookish Witch

Corporate Blah Blah Blahs by Sandeep Pawar

Book blurb:

Do you think these corporate folks say simple things in complicated ways? Do you think corporate folks, for no reason, insert business jargon that you suspect no one, including themselves, understands?

Meet Corporate Subbu, who has understood the secret of success- The one who talks reaches the top. He is on a mission to inject business jargon into his dialect to sound professional. He leaves no stone unturned when it comes to impressing others with his words. What he does not know is, his half-knowledge creates confusion and embarrassment. But he makes sure that everyone is entertained by his stunts, unknowingly.

This collection of short stories will give you a perfect fun ride of what happens during office meetings and how the confusion can be fun to witness.

Genre: Fiction/ Humour

Pages: 101

Format: Kindle eBook

Price: 49 INR/$1.08

My Ratings: 4.3/5

Have you ever heard or wondered about phrases like ‘Push the envelope’ or ‘Touch Base’? This book gives gyaan (enlightenment) on many such corporate jargons. The fun part is, it does so while providing the bookish meaning as well as the hidden meaning behind each such phrase. Read this one to have a hearty laugh as you find yourself or someone you know within the pages of this corporate humour book.

Sharpen your corporate lingo while having some fun.

What I liked about the book:
—> It makes you laugh right from the first page (yep, literally)
—> You’re immediately drawn to the clumsy and silly, yet endearing character of Subbu (the male protagonist who is the team lead and boss)
—> The narrative is from the PoV of a wall clock which is so creative as well as funny. (the clock introduces itself as ‘Samay’ and I immediately found myself recalling the 90s Mahabharata show which started with ‘Mein Samay Hun’. So some brownie points to the author for that nostalgia ride)
—> It will be a totally relatable and fun read for someone who works in a tech company ( or any corporate for that matter)
—> Each chapter starts with a corporate wisdom quote which are all extremely witty, because they’re all so true.

What I did not like about the book:
—> It ends too soon. I was just starting to warm up and the book concluded which was disappointing as I definitely wanted more.
—> I feel the story could be more diverse if a few of Subbu’s supervisors were also included in the story.

Quotable quotes:

—> If you are the smartest person in the room, you are in the wrong room, they say. But if you are the most famous person in your circle, you are in the wrong circle; they didn’t say.
—> Some things are better when not used incorrectly than used correctly. Jargon is one of them.
—> Either use jargon effectively or inculcate the habit of blah blah blah-ing!
—> After ice cream, it’s gossip that is loved by all.
—> I reside in Anemone, the meeting room. Please don’t waste efforts in its correct pronunciation, even half of the employees can’t do it. So, instead, they lovingly call it ‘the room with a big clock.’ Cute.
—> Subhashish, lovingly known as Subbu, is one of the managers. He blushes whenever he is called Boss rather than a manager. His teammates call him Boss when their appraisal is near.
—> Alfred was right- some men just want to watch the world burn.
—> They say half knowledge is dangerous, but Subbu cares the least about it. He believes in- ‘something is better than nothing’ or better ‘some jargon is better than no jargon.’ ‘I shall use it anyhow and force you to use it somehow.’ He ordered his teammates.
—> Your boss will never believe you’re giving your 100% so don’t even try.
—> You ought to get a perfect melody only if all musicians are in sync.
—> The unsaid rule is that you save yourself no matter if that costs your team to get in trouble.
—> Some employees don’t see any problem in paraphrasing because who would see a problem in a situation they are best at?
—> Your boss is the funniest person on the Earth. Don’t laugh.
—> Handling escalations is a skill similar to disaster management.
—> Subbu had taken sick leave last Friday for all the good reasons- he was celebrating his son’s birthday.
—> This is the thing about bosses. They need everything at the exact particular moment. Not blaming them entirely because they have a point too. The fact is- if they do not ask for immediate action, they may have to wait till eternity.
—> This is the case with senior people- the shorter the email you write, the higher is your position.
—> The escalation in corporates is like karma. It comes back to you no matter how hard you try to kick it far.
—> A resume is the best piece of fiction. An interview is the best piece of drama.
—> The whitepaper lacks humour. Can you imagine that there are no boss jokes inside, even though it is a pure corporate thing? No boss jokes make whitepaper a dull doc!
—> Winning the blame-game in corporate is very tough because every player is equally good at it. To win it, you must come up with innovative strategies and novel excuses.
—> The best way of answering questions is by replying with counter questions.
—> Who to blame when everyone is a criminal?
—> I sometimes wonder, in life too, how easily we forget to pay enough attention to the most important things despite knowing their worth?
—> Do not pick up calls after 5 pm on Friday. It’ll ruin your weekend.
—>Whenever everything looks good, suspicion is born. Or, in more sophisticated terms, all-good is a mother of skepticism.
—> We need validation; we don’t believe in ourselves to the degree we do in others.
—> Employees do not like their bosses lingering nearby their desks, breaching the pseudo-privacy in the office. Probably that is why, no matter how disgusting it sounds, toilets are the places employees prefer to enjoy their privacy.
—> Practice makes a man perfect. After listening to corporate language all day, I realise that- ‘almost’ is a very tricky word, just like ‘some time.’
These intangible things are hard to decipher.
—> Release notes are mandatory in almost all deliverables so that people can ignore them. They are no different than the software license agreements we all ignore.
—> Funnily enough, people want to get fed with something they can ignore. They like it that way. You cannot ignore anything; there has to be something particular to ignore.
—> The relief of evading responsibility is unmatchable.
—> Email forwarding at incorrect times is an art.
—> Coffee is a great pain-sharer.
—> It is always a good choice to keep your boss on your side, especially when your ship is wrecked and can sink anytime.
—>If you think your boss likes you, remember it’s a misconception. Your boss just hates you less than your teammates.
—> Boss cannot befriend any of his subordinates.
—> Only sloths decline their boss’s tea offer. Boss can make an offer, which no subordinate can refuse.
—> Tea shops around posh offices are always crowded, and precisely that adds to its pleasant atmosphere. It is said that office walls have ears, but the crowd around tea shops is deaf. Now, what is blocking you from gossiping freely?
—> Compliments from your boss are not to be taken seriously but cautiously.
—> Romance is such a genre that makes everyone attentive.
—> The best quality of a boss is solving other’s problems before their own.
—> Sick leaves are planned earlier than a vacation.
—> Failing is not a problem; the real problem is if they don’t learn any lesson from it.
—> To err and learn out of it is human.
To err and repeat is a fool.
—> Planned sick leaves are totally an Indian thing.
—> I don’t know how people make successful Goa plans.
—> The only time employees say ‘no’ to their boss is when they plan to resign or have already resigned.
—> Work is the same everywhere. Work is the same; bosses are different.
—> The sliest word in the dictionary is- ‘depends.’
—> If your team collectively likes your boss, something is wrong with your team.
—> The art of saying No is essential as, probabilistically, you may need to use it half of the time.
—> A basic human instinct is that no one worries about the money if that is not going from their own pocket, which makes perfect sense.
—> People, especially hard-core poets, use clouds with a negative connotation. But rain, the aftermath of clouds, is often cheerful, is loved, and is considered romantic unless you are stuck in traffic jams or traveling with surge prices. The majority of corporates sitting comfortably in their offices with a hot cup of coffee in their hand loves rain.
—> Free lunch is the biggest motivation.
—> If you can’t convince them, confuse them. If you can’t confuse them either, tell them that-you will get back to them and don’t.
—> The unspoken rule in corporates is- no one messes with an employee’s coffee time.
—> In corporates, if you don’t know the answer, you should always guess it. It’s a fact that guessing increases the probability of being correct and makes people believe that you were at least attentive. Also, there’s no negative marking for wrong guesses.
—> Lies are easy to say but not easy to remember.
—>No one hates their colleague every day – only five days a week.
—> The word ‘gentle’ in the term gentle reminder is redundant.
—> People often remember things that they want to forget. Like people forget to settle expenses with others if they owe them money.
—> Birthday celebrations in the office are often awkward and embarrassing. Usually, neither the people want to get their birthdays celebrated, nor their team members, nor HRs. But they celebrate it anyway, all just for the sake of pleasing nobody.
—> The birthday celebration tells a lot about your salary and gives a fair idea about your plans to stay in the firm.
—> If a small mistake can entertain many lives, can we term it as a mistake?
—> If you want to ruin your boss’s weekend apply for leaves on Friday.
—> The first day in the office is always crucial as it builds the first impression in the employee’s mind. It often remains the same until the last day.
—> The first day is often the last day where you and HRs are in a cordial relationship.
—> Reality has a bad habit of getting exposed, eventually.
—> Words can be deceptive. Soft words can be more deceptive.
—> Each time you do not laugh at your boss’s joke, your hike is reduced by 1%.
—> The best way of getting more hike is by asking your boss the questions he likes to answer, no matter how stupid they may sound.
—> The truth is nasty. It comes out unknowingly, often at the wrong times.
—> A worried person can utter stupid things, but you should be empathetic towards their nonsense.

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