Today is the birthday of a long time colleague who has been a fellow-traveler in the “Libyan journey”. We have together mapped out and charted ways to deal with professional, organizational, personal issues which many expatriate workers living and working in the Arab world face. The specifics of our situation in working in private sector medical organization in Libya give us a perspective of how health care delivery systems are organized in the developing world and also the attitudes of different organizers to workers from the Indian subcontinent. The premise of this blog is that- Together, we can map out a better journey.
Together- Developing perspectives,mapping journeys
The journey of Jeevan from Karnataka makes me recall a journey of one “Bomma” whose story is written and traced by Amitav Ghosh in his book “In an Antique Land”. In an in depth anthropological study, Ghosh traced the journey of the worker-slave ‘Bomma’ around a thousand years ago. Through his different researches, Ghosh surmises that this person was probably from what is modern day Tunisia, he lived and worked in Egypt before going to the Western India via Aden. He lived in what would be modern day Karnataka, and had a successful and influential relation with his employer and would do trade-journeys for him to Aden.
We, workers from the Indian subcontinent, have done a reverse journey of sorts, and live in North Africa having trained and gained initial work experience in India. Given the different professional, managerial attitudes of private organizers, we have refined our approach and realized over the years that –Together, we can map out a better journey.
Defining a sense of team
“Yes, Dr.Shetty! What can I do for you?” the (ex) board member said in a haughty tone knowing very well that he just has to say – “Yes, we will do it” and then forget about this fellow.
Over the years the persons who are actually responsible for producing the results in the organization, actually facing the frontline of the care-giving have become wiser and more organized as a team..so that – “Yes-what-can-I-Do ..and then Forget-the-specific-follow-up” attitude type of “board members” are now firmly “EX” in our organization.
An afternoon at Funduq Kabir
Meeting in a non-formal setting but with an earnest specific agenda of bettering ourselves as a team helped us get into better grips with the situation. For a long period, we used to be lost, being made to run around by managers who neither produce any results, nor are responsible for care-giving, nor take up any specific tasks.
We mapped together a joint strategy to isolate such non-productive dead-weight and also assert ourselves as a group who add value to the organization and hence should be given our share of respect and returns.
Though this thing was brewing for a long time, it became more crystallized one fine afternoon when we met for coffee at ..Funduq Kabir.
The Ten Dinars which we jointly contributed towards our “Society” had a catalyst effect on the dynamics of the organization. The legal translation of the Arabic contracts in government sector and getting the Gratuity, conferences etcetera all form part of Mapping our journey together
…It all started with Coffee at Kabir..and our earnest will and belief that –
Together, we can map out a better journey.
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While wishing him happy birthday, we also remember the many times when we have brainstormed together and refined our approach as individuals, as a group and as part of an organization.
Do you know any person with whom you built such a fruitful enriching partnership?