A week has passed since I started working at Jaipur Rugs, an elite handmade carpet export house based in Jaipur. From the first glance, I found the work here pretty exciting.
Jaipur Rugs has more than 250 employees in its headquarters, which happens to be my work location. With departments ranging from Marketing, Human Resources, Account, Sales, Civil, IT, Payroll, R&D, D&D, packaging etc. Other than this, more than 40,000 artisans are connected to Jaipur Rugs family who works from their own homes to make handmade carpets for the company. Jaipur Rugs have installed the apparatus to make carpets in the home of each and every one of them. The place has basically everything for it to be considered corporate but with a conscious mindset.
I have been appointed by the company to change the food systems. They want a complete revamp food in their staff mess, their guest house, their pantry for people visiting their office in the daytime and of course in the food cooked at the house of the founder of the company. It also provides me with an opportunity to experiment in the real life about my ideology of food is healthy and tasty at the same time if we know how to make it that way. Just like me, the founder of the company Mr. NK Chaudhary believes the future is about healthy food and understand its importance. I am aiming to finish the task assigned to me and leave the company for my next learning by the end of September.
The company has provided me with a laptop for my research work as well as for connecting with everyone else in the company. They have a personal server with a chat box, email id, local drive and similar things. They have an intercom situated on every desk. A team of three operators works separately to connect people directly in the whole company through the intercom. I can directly connect with any department throughout the company without even a need to move from my desk. I have to punch my finger impression in the biometric system while entering and exiting the company thus recording mine in and out time. I am finding these things really extraordinary and intriguing.
I know it’s pretty much like every other corporate office, but given the fact that I am a food connoisseur and this is my first job, I want to share my joys even on the smallest things.
There is a really sweet HR team and I personally have a Relationship manager to make sure I properly settle in the company. They regularly ask me things to make sure I am not facing any difficulties.
I recall how my friends, especially from college, used to share the experiences of their first jobs. Although I never really cared much, subconsciously I always felt left out. With a nostalgic feeling, I feel like shouting out to my friends that ‘Bhaiyo, Naukri lag gayi meri, ajao job party lene’.
Talking about my college, I am remembering how in May 2016, while leaving my college I promised myself two things by the end of two years namely first, I will have an idea about what I want to do in life and second thing will be about having a sustainable source of income. While I figured the first one a few months ago, having this (totally out of the blue) Job has helped me to keep my second promise to myself which had a deadline of May 2018, phew exactly on time. I love these unknown energies that always helped me out.
Although I have entered the company with a designation of the chef, I have spent maximum hours of the first week being a mess manager. I wanted to give myself time to settle in first. The workers already have rather smooth ways of working which I don’t desire to distort in any way. Although there has been another reason for me to not cook in the mess as yet. This baby is too hot to handle!!!
The situation on the third and top floor of the building, the mess just has a Tin shade. All the heat generated by the sun rays falling on the tin shade is directly passed on to the inside of the kitchen. Adding it to the heat generated during the cooking process and the absence of proper ventilation, the mess is a perfect example of an ideal hotbox. While just standing there and observing things I feel I’ve lost 2 liters of water through sweating. Thus while in mess, I prefer to stay at one place and avoid any kind of movement with fear of more dehydration.
Even with such difficult situation in the mess, I feel the most difficult part of my first week at job was regarding the clothes to wear. I have no idea what to wear at work. Firstly, is living a different life altogether, I have been mostly wearing shorts/harem, t-shirts, and slippers in most of the occasions. Secondly, for the 3/4th time I will be working in mess but for the remaining time, I might be sitting on my desk doing my other responsibilities such as research, financials of the mess, planning etc.
For the first day, I went in a full professional white shirt, a proper formal trouser and brown formal shoes. And yes, I was making myself work in the mess with this attire. Next day I did some homework and went to work after reading the employee guidebook of the company on clothing. I realized that we are allowed or rather encouraged to wear casual outfits. The next day I wore a little informal shirt. I still was not having the satisfaction I desired and thus decided to observe what people were wearing in the office. I noticed people coming in T-shirts and thus next day even I decided to wear t-shirt and jeans, although my shoes remained the same. The third day, throughout the time I kept on observing the shoes of people even while having conversations with them, so as to understand what do people usually wear at work. Finally next day I started wearing loafers and a polo t-shirt with Jeans. A relatively better outfit, I did not like the polo t-shirt. That day, I met Sneha, a friend in the evening. I asked her if I was looking good in the t-shirt. She pointed out how me keeping all the three buttons open was the reason for me not looking nice. She herself closed two buttons pointing out how decent I was looking. I know! I have no dressing sense at all. Although I am feeling like a man on the mission, determined to figure out which outfit is going to suit me the best.
On my first day of enrollment, there was another girl that joined the company. She has joined in HR department. I have been finding her rather cute. I have been trying to get to know her a bit more. But gosh! these corporate offices and barriers created by departments. But still, on the second day, I went to the HR department for some work after ensuring she was present there. On the third day, I specially went to the HR department during the lunch break, on the pretext of thinking about catching up a bit by getting to know people… It seems the energies were finally seeing my efforts for on the fourth day the destiny was with me, there was HR meeting and instead of calling the other Vinayak working in the company they called me by mistake. Hurray! Although I am not sure if I want to ask her out or what do I really want to do now after four days of knowing her a bit. The attraction is somewhere going away. I know anticlimax, isn’t it!
Although I am feeling intrigued by a lot of things about the company, I am focused on the task at hand. There is a purpose they have appointed me to the company after all. I understand that the stakes are pretty high around my credibility as well. So yes, this can be considered my make it or break it event. That being said, there are a lot of questions regarding what to do, how to do, when to do that are popping up in the mind… These are the questions whose answers I hope to figure out in the coming few months. Yes, I am scared but also excited. I am finding a thrill in making a deep dive after practicing in shallow water from the past two years. For what is going to happen next, I have my fingers crossed.