ANAND – 54.5%
“Fifty-four point five percent,” he shouted in joy. He had passed 2nd PUC in second division and he was elated at the result. He wanted to give this news to his father soon. He closed his eyes for a moment, thanked to Lord Thirupathi and rushed towards the college gate.
“Are you a mad, getting into a running bus,” bus conductor shouted at him.
“I can’t wait for another bus. I’ve to reach Indiranagar soon.” He replied panting and making some space for himself in the crowded bus.
“Crazy lad,” the conductor mumbled. “Take a ticket,” he said, annoyed.
“I’ve a day-pass, anna,” he replied while taking a BMTC day-pass out of his pocket and grinned.
The conductor looked at him displeased and moved to the rear of the bus, “tickets... tickets... anyone without tickets.”
As the bus stopped at Indiranagar bus stop, he got down and started walking fast towards the KAT office. He was walking down the street, thinking how much his father who was a peon in the office would be happy to hear that his son has completed 2nd PUC successfully. He was eager to see his father’s cheerful face.
He reached inside a room of KAT office where his father was cleaning and arranging dusty files on a dilapidated table. “Appa, I’ve passed the exam,” he cried in joy looking at his father.
“I always knew it, son,” said gladly his father who was at first surprised to see him in the office.
Anand was delighted to see a smile on his father’s face.
His father came near to him, kept his hands on Anand’s shoulders and said, “I’m happy for you, son...You should start searching a job now. It’s being difficult to run house in my salary alone.”
Anand could see his father’s wet eyes those were looking hopefully at him. “Yes appa, I will definitely find a job” said he and left the room.
All his joy of getting passed in exam had vanished. A new set of questions had occupies his mind, “What will I do next? How I’ll get a job? Who will guide me?”
He was thoughtful all the way to his home. Getting passed in exam was not enough. He had to get a job, earn, support his family and marry off his younger sister. But he had some dreams too. He wanted to study further and learn computers so that he can design banners, cards and logos like Subramanian, his friend who used to work in a graphic designing company. Working on computer and designing like Subramanian had always been his dream. But, he couldn’t see any way to make his dream come true. He had to start earning soon.
Looking at his serious face, his mother asked him when he entered into the house, “Why are you so serious? You went to see the result... Have you passed or not?”
“I’ve passed the exam, amma. I’m tired, going to sleep,” said he in a low tone.
“It’s good. I’ll offer a coconut to Lord Thirupati today. What will you do next, Anand?” asked mother. He went to bed without replying.
That evening he heard his father telling to his mother, “I wish I could afford him to study further. But now it’s becoming hard to survive in my salary of just five thousand rupees. Even I’m getting retired next year.”
Next morning Anand woke up early, went to a newspaper vendor and bought a newspaper to search if there is any job for him in it. But all went vain, as there was nothing in it for him. In disappointment he turned the last page of the newspaper, where he saw an advertisement:
Unnati – A vocational training centre
“Guarantee for job after 70 days of free training”
An initiative by SGBS Trust
The moment he read the advertisement he decided that he must join it. He reached home with the newspaper and showed the advertisement to his father. After reading the advertisement his father said, “Anyways you don’t have a job. Better you join it. They’re promising a job even.”
Taking father’s consent, same day he reached to Unnati centre for interview. He got selected for vocation –Sales. Next day he brought his luggage from his house since he had to stay in hostel for next seventy days.
In Unnati he used to attend classes for vocational training, and classes for life skills like punctuality, respect, honesty, money management, alcohol abuse etc too.
One day in a life skill class he learnt about ‘Punctuality’. He learnt the value of time and how by being punctual time can be saved. Punctuality is a virtue which adds to personality of an individual and others opinion about him. In the class he got to know that all big entrepreneurs respect time and insist their employees to be punctual. That day he understood the value of time and decided to be punctual always. It was an important lesson that he learnt in Unnati, later which helped him to achieve his goal in life.
In Unnati he got chance to learn computer too which was his long pending dream. As he was always fascinated to see a computer with 14” colour screen, a keyboard and a mouse with rolling ball, he learnt computer with great interest. He was quick in learning computer and better than his classmates.
It was a Sunday, his mother was cooking inside the kitchen and father was oiling his bicycle outside the house, when he returned home after the seventy days training. Seeing him back, both of them rushed towards him. His father took his luggage and his mother embraced him with love. He showed his Unnati training completion certificate to his father along with an appointment letter from Medicon Association. The company used to make ultrasound gel. His job was to contact doctors, hospitals and labs for sales and promotion of the gel. He was offered a salary of Rs 3000. Everyone was happy in the house. That day his mother offered another coconut to Lord Thirupathi.
Next day sharp at eight in the morning he reached to the office of the company. Nobody was in the office except a peon who was doing his regular cleaning work before manager would have come.
“Take a chair and sit in his room. He never comes before nine,” said the peon and opened office windows, a whiff of fresh air and sunlight came inside.
Ten minutes later a car stopped in front of the office and a man rushed inside. “Babu, where are all the sales boys?” he asked as soon as he entered in the office, apparently worried.
“No one has come yet, sir,” said the peon.
“It’s already eight, and no one has come!” he said annoyed. “Call me as soon as someone comes. I’ve to send an order urgently to civil hospital,” he said and turned back to go.
“Sir, a newly appointed person has come,” said the peon.
The manager stopped and turned back. “Who is he?” said the manager and went inside his room.
“What’s your name?” asked the manager.
“Anand, sir,” he replied.
“Anand, I’m happy to see that you are on time. None of our regular sales boys has come yet and I’ve to send an order urgently to civil hospital. Though it’s your first day, I believe you can do it. Can you do it?” asked the manager.
“Good,” he wrote something on a paper slip. “Meet Dr Veenu there and give this slip to him. I’ll call him too. Babu will show you the parcel,” he said and gave the slip to him.
“Anand, the parcel must reach before nine,” said the manager when Anand was leaving the room.
“I’ll do it sir,” he said and left.
This was his first day on job and the manager – Mr Shridharan was impressed by his punctuality and adaptability to work. Later Anand became his favourite sales-boy and he used to give all important orders to him. In next six months, working under Mr Shridharan he learnt many important lessons of sales and customer service. However, the instinct to learn graphic designing and starting his office was still alive in him.
One late evening when Anand was passing by Coxtown area, his desire to become a graphic designer drew him to Subramanian’s office. No one was in the office except Subramanian who was working on a computer.
“Hello,” said Anand.
Subramanian looked towards door, “Hi Anand. Long time, how come here today?”
“I was passing by here. I looked at the shop and thought to meet you,” Anand said.
“Good you’ve come. Pull a chair.” Said Subramanian.
Anand drew a chair and sat beside him. “You’re alone in office today,” said Anand.
“Yeah, my boss is out of town and others have left for the day,” Subramanian said without moving his eyes form computer screen as he was working continuously.
“You look worried. Any Problem?” asked Anand to him.
“Yeah, I have to complete designing this invitation card and then thousand copies have to be printed. It’s already delayed by two days. It’s of one of our regular customers and he can land-up any time.” Subramanian said worried.
“Is your customer dark, bald and corpulent?” Anand said in low voice.
“Yes. How do you know?” asked Subramanian.
“He has already landed-up,” Anand said looking towards the door.
The customer came near to Subramanian, looked in his computer screen, got miffed and said, “You’re still designing it. Inauguration of my showroom is after two days, do you understand? When the cards will print and when I’ll distribute them?”
“Sir, I’m about to finish. You can collect the cards tomorrow afternoon,” said Subramanian.
“I can’t come again. Tell it to that bugger, your manager, ‘close the shop if you can’t deliver on time.’ I’ll get it printed somewhere else,” he shouted and turned to leave.
“Sir, need not to come again. We’ll deliver it at your place tomorrow,” Anand said.
He stopped, turned back and said, “Can you deliver the cards to my office?”
“Yes sir, we understand you’ve very less time. Even no other designer can design and print cards for you in a day. Your design is ready. We’ll print the cards and deliver at your office tomorrow morning.” Anand said politely.
“Okay, deliver the cards at my office tomorrow before ten, otherwise don’t come,” he said and left the office, annoyed.
Both of them relaxed and sighed after he left.
“But, how we’ll deliver the cards tomorrow morning before ten?” Subramanian asked to Anand.
“You don’t worry, we’ve whole night. Design the card and we’ll print them in the night. Morning I’ll get them delivered by any of our sales-boys going towards his office.” Said Anand.
“Thanks Anand. You saved me today. He’s an old customer and we get lot of work from him. Losing him would have been disastrous.” Subramanian said.
“It’s okay. Customer’s time is always valuable. ‘Delivery on time is mantra to success’ my manager says,” said Anand.
“Good Anand, you’ve good sense of dealing with customer. Let’s work together. We’ll open our own graphics designing shop.” Subramanian said.
“Are you serious?” Anand asked in disbelief as he could see a way to his dream coming true.
“Yes, I’ve been planning to open my own shop for a long time. I know, even you want to learn the work. Let’s work together.” Subramanian said.
“And we’ll deliver the work at customer’s place, always on time,” said Anand in excitement.
Both of them looked into each other’s eyes for consent and said together, “Done.”
Next morning one thousand printed cards were delivered at the customer’s office before ten.
Four months later they opened their own office in Rajajinagar, with name ‘Logo Design and Brand Systems’. Anand learned the designing work from Subamanian and both of them are running the office successfully. They value customers’ time and deliver orders at their place on time. Delivery on time is their mantra to success.