“Tut tut tut tut…” I heard Lulu, my parrot whistling while perched atop my window.
“Hey! Hello there!! How are you?” he asked.
“On top of the world.” I said emphatically. When you are there you want everybody to know it.
“Oh, parrots are always there, homo sapiens, like you, reach only occasionally” he said. Lulu was taking a close look at me. “But something seems to be special today.”
“Our prime minister said ‘Acche din aayenge.’ So I felt very happy. Long overdue, happy days, right?”
“Oh, leave him alone. All PMs say that or something similar; you must not take Modi seriously.”
“You are a pessimist. I feel that Modi will do something.”
“Wishful thinking. Did you not read about El Nino?” Lulu hopped on to my writing table and then on my laptop. “Petrol, Gas, Rail fare everything is going up. It can’t be otherwise. What can Modi do?”
“You are speaking like a Congressman.”
“Ok, ok. Forget it. I saw you entering a management institute. Have you taken to teaching again?” Parrots are the most inquisitive among birds.
“Nah! This is an interesting assignment. I will be mentoring a group of students. It is not an institute which will exactly compete with IIMs. But that is why they need a mentor. And I feel very excited about it.”
“You have a point. The so called ‘best’ are not always the best. See what happened to Brazil. And we have also seen minnows Greece winning in Euro 2004, beating Portugal twice in the tournament. I think it is easy to underrate potential, though I won’t say the same about overrating. What say you?” Lulu glanced at me and moved closer as I wiped my glasses clean.
“You said it. And I see ‘Brazils’ all around me. Brazil seems to signify a team of stalwarts who bite dust. I see it in Congress defeat. I see it in minority shareholders of Tata Motors defeating management proposal to hike executive pay. I see it in the humiliating defeat all political honchos had! Nobody could have imagined a year ago that Modi will give congress drubbing like Germany gave Brazil.”
“Why does it happen? Everybody has his ‘udayakaal’ or time of awakening, becoming aware of his potential. Do you believe that?” Lulu
“May be. As for me, my teachers have always made a huge difference to me. Mentor makes the difference. It is like a machine which needs to be switched on by somebody else – then things move, there is transformation.”
“So this is the time for all ‘Brazils’ of the world who think they are great to reflect and draw a lesson for themselves. Is that what you are saying?”
“Yes. And a little more. It is also time for minnows of the world to throw away shackles of negative mindsets.”
“So it is time for all so called small players of the world to think that they may be ‘ugly ducklings?’”
“You got me!”
“How will you do it, my friend?” Lulu fluttered his wings.
“By connecting with them.”
“This is certainly Greek for me. Can you tell me that shorn of all your philosophical and MBA-wala jargon?”
“Hmmmm…… that is difficult. But let me try. It will be by holding a mirror in front of them – if they dare to look in it, they will get it.”
Lulu hopped on to my shoulder. “When it comes to people issues, you speak in riddles.”
“Well, what can I do? Words are so poor communicators of meaning!”