Thursday, September 23, 2010

A year that was in one word, kaleidoscopic

2nd September 2009, I took a blind leap into the sphere of the unknown. I chucked off my secure and high paying job to pursue things that I wanted to. The irony was that I wasn't sure what exactly I wanted to do. The year ends this August again. It had been a very difficult decision and a silly one at that, atleast my parents thought so. Yes silly, because I couldn’t make much money, not remotely close to what I was making before. But still, last year was a glorious year for me, the most happening and reinvigorating one till now, which I am sure no corporate engagement would have given me. I attempt to list out in this post all that was special and happening for me:

  • I joined as a business analyst in a rural marketing firm. A designation that sounded cooler than technical writer. How much I had craved for a designation like that.
  • I traveled extensively through the length and breadth of rural Andhra, Karnataka and Maharashtra. I got to see real India through my eyes. Lived in villages, participated in their customs and rituals.
  • Rural marketing also allowed me to see some exotic tourist destinations like the Western Ghats, Jog Falls, Ajanta Ellora caves etc.
  • I delivered presentations to the CXO’s of top telecom majors like Vodafone, Airtel, Uninor.
  • I almost single handedly organized a summit on Rural Marketing in association with the Economic Times at Taj Krishna, Hyderabad. Hobnobbed with the who’s who in the industry like heads of Nokia, telecom majors, automobile majors, FMCG majors etc.
  • I helped start Bhubaneswar Toastmasters Club.

  • I donned the role of a lecturer for Business communication for Reliance Sparta and delivered talks at around a dozen engineering and MBA colleges in Hyderabad.
  • I along with Apurv Mishra founded the Futures Conference, Orissa. I presented a road map to Orissa’s future in front of 50 young entrepreneurs handpicked from across the state. The Futures Conference received rave reviews in the press and I too got a mention in the Economic Times.
  • I honed my skills as a personal branding enthusiast and delivered a series of talks across many cities: o I delivered a personal branding workshop at KIIT Universityo I was invited to deliver a talk at Goa International Center, Goa.
  • I spoke at the Futures Conference, Orissa
  • I Spoke at CA, Hyderabad
  • I conducted a Creative Writing Workshop at Hyderabad at Manohar Hotel. We had invited popular authors Raksha Bharadia and Bishwanath Ghosh to conduct the workshop.
  • I gave my first press interview in Goa to The Herald.
  • I was featured in Make Sense video.

    Asian Tour - India - Rural Development w/ Ravi from christian vanizette on Vimeo.

  • I was invited in a radio show as a guest RJ. I co-hosted the entire show for an hour. One of my beautiful memories.
  • I was mentioned in 5 major newspapers: o Economic Times o Indian Express o The Herald o Jagran City Plus
  • I also participated in the promotional video for Personal Branding in a professional studio. I was part of the entire shoot, dubbing and editing; an exhilarating experience again.
  • I was part of a concept summer camp for Live More for kids in Bhubaneswar.
  • I worked closely with Siva Cotipalli, a TED fellow who is the founder of Dhanax. I helped him initiate his rural marketing vertical for his organization.
  • I also helped in the content strategy of a young political party, Jago party.
  • I started Project Oar
  • I received an invite from popular author Onyeka Nwulue to Nigeria to deliver a series of talks to the youth across Nigerian universities on a youth exchange program.
  • I started my first independent content consultancy services for startups in technology sector. I worked for some very innovative companies like Aquilonis, Patent and a US based company. There is no bigger satisfaction than receving a sincere compliment from your client on your work delivered. Also I received my first freelancing income during a painful monetary crisis. The satisfaction of earning independent freelance income cant match to any amount of corporate salary.
  • I went to my ex campus CA, Hyderabad to deliver a speech for its demo meet. This was a fulfilling experience for me because I had initiated the process of setting up Toastmasters at CA.
  • The icing on the cake was my trip to France. I was invited by Gemalto, a global leader in digital security to consult on business opportunities for them in rural markets in India. It was my first Europe tour and fun filled one at that. (It deserves a separate blog post) .
  • I got free pass to attend the world famous Lift Conference and I got to interact with Sam Pitroda.
  • I met and made friends with a string of interesting people along the way:
  • Sam Pitroda
  • Onyeka
  • Klaus
  • Siva Cotipalli
  • Clement
  • Marc gemeto
  • Christian and Romain
  • Raksha Bharadia, author
  • Bishwanath Ghosh, author
It was an year full of great learning and experience. I say great learning because with all my years of experience in IT sector, I was too distant and naïve towards the realities of the world. In this year, I witnessed first hand the sly and machivellian way the business runs. Witnessed the dirty world of business closely where corruption and crime were rampant. This was a year that left me disillusioned and I began to question the sanctity of business. That is why I consider this year an year of great learning because I learnt the lessons the hard way. Today after this one year of adventure or misadventure(as per my parents) I go back to where I came from; back to the IT industry. But with whatever I acheieved in this one year, I feel proud of what I have done. I firmly believe that I cudnt have done all that I did if I was in my previous job. I also realized one thing very strongly and is reaffirmed in me that is life is all about the journey, not the destination. Make this journey beautiful.


Anonymous,  Friday, September 24, 2010 12:17:00 AM  


For me it was 2008 :D!!
And you know you can recreate the magic. Have hope

Nanda Kishor Friday, September 24, 2010 2:09:00 AM  

Ravi, Good to know about you through this nice write-up.

Brand RAVI KUMAR always reminds me that he is a good friend of mine and a great communicator :-)

Many of my friends in IT say they are getting a good package but very few (including you) say its a good learning experience. . . I think going forward that's the way to go!

I'm getting inspiration from you!

Arun Friday, September 24, 2010 3:23:00 AM  

Thats tremendous achievement in one year, Ravi. Even if you haven't made truck loads of money, the satisfaction of taking your own road is worth all that. It is a matter of time before money comes chasing you. All the best.

Anonymous,  Saturday, September 25, 2010 2:14:00 AM  

Condivido pienamente il suo punto di vista. L'idea di un buon supporto.
Condivido pienamente il suo punto di vista. In questo nulla in vi e 'una buona idea. Pronta a sostenere voi.

Anonymous,  Friday, October 01, 2010 2:22:00 AM  

the precious content you presented do help our team's investigation for our company, thanks.

- Lucas

Girish Mahadevan Monday, October 04, 2010 9:39:00 PM  

Nice ride!
I need to have some gyan sessions with you, u have a lot to share.

Good day

sekhar Tuesday, October 12, 2010 2:41:00 AM  

Ravi ~ Great journey. I hope I met you at the beginning of your journey at Colombo and now when I see all your accomplishments I am really proud to be associated with a person like you. Keep going ... never end your journey - All the best :)

Sunayana Thursday, January 20, 2011 4:42:00 AM  

wow... very nice.. you continue to inspire me every time i read your blogs or read what you achieve and your photos on social networking..
keep up the good work buddy and good luck for all your future endeavors...

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