Health brings a freedom very few realize, until they no longer have it

Be prepared for the challenges in your professional life – Health

We have been talking a lot about being happy. However, the old proverbs like ‘Fortune favors the brave’ and ‘You were born to win, but to be a winner, you must plan to win, prepare to win, and expect to win’ always hold true.

We have to acknowledge that the only constant is change. This change has just become faster in last couple of decades. It has provided unprecedented growth in economy and massive job opportunities to millions globally. On the other side, the issues related to this growth have also started surfacing up. One of the most impactful one is the rising health issue in the working professionals.

Jim was a great talent for his company. He worked for long hours and did not rest unless the result was achieved. Obviously, his boss was more than happy and continued giving him more and more challenging work that translated in more money and more growth. For all others, this was a dream run which almost everyone was envious of. Nothing could have been better for Jim with everyone banking upon him to close a new deal, get things moving and the annual rewards were all for him.

“The only insurance you have is to keep your physical and mental health good to ensure a long and happy professional life.“

Jim enjoyed his work while he liked to party as well. While he smoked often, he ensured that he did that while he was off duty or on his way to meet the clients. He loved good food and obviously had a taste for best liquor. On weekends he would party till late night. One thing, which supported his work, was absence of a wife. He was a bachelor and preferred that way just because he loved his independence. His parents stayed in a different town and he loved his status of being a free bird with lots of money and a great time with his work and parties. Taste for good food and drinks had its effect on him and he gained weight .

It was his thirty sixth birthday that he overindulged in the party with more drinks and a lot more food. Few could see him perspiring heavily even in air-conditioned room and in loud music and darkness no one understood what happened to him. It was only in the morning that he was rushed to Hospital in a serious condition. He had suffered a stroke. The paramedics had a tough time putting his heavy body on the stretcher and having no one from his family around added to these issues. Few of his friends stayed on while rest found some excuse to vanish from the scene.
It took more than a month for Jim to come out of the hospital. His heavy smoking, drinking and over eating habit with no exercise had spoiled his body beyond repair.

Life was never the same for Jim. His office and his boss who never blinked before giving the best to Jim were quick to say good-bye. They realized that Jim can never be useful to them with so many complications and obviously they did not want to food bills of his long medical treatment. He could not be in his office on his last day as he was confined to his bed.

On his thirty seventh birthday, Jim was alone with his old mother by his side. His finances were all but gone. His friends abandoned him. Few dropped by, but the numbers dwindled.

Just imagine yourself and understand the fact that you will not always remain young. Age will catch up with you sooner or later and you need to take care of your health. While changes in our eco-system have brought opportunities, it has also broken family systems and support systems which remain healthy only till the time we are able to earn and be on our own.

The only insurance you have is to keep your physical and mental health good and ensure a long and happy professional life.

Alok Kumar

Alok Kumar is Managing Partner of SRKay Consulting group, a private equity company, nurturing innovative ventures. Alok also serves on the board of ICCL (Indian Clearing Corporation Limited - A subsidiary of BSE- Bombay Stock Exchange) as an external advisor for technology and information security. Prior to this, Alok had been Managing Director of Sears IT & Management Services India Private Limited (SHI) since its inception in December 2009 and served in the same position till very recently. Having been in senior IT management positions in Fortune 500 companies, Alok has won several national and international awards. Alok is instrumental in planning and setting up SHI and thereafter growing it to a multi-locational thousand-plus people organization. Over the last five years, with his strategic vision, Alok helped SHI grow roots in India, develop and support technology applications and infrastructure across core mainframe, cutting edge e-Commerce and big data technologies. With his unique people-oriented transformational leadership style, Alok turned SHI into one of the most valued investments of Sears, garnering great ROIs, and creating value much beyond cost arbitrage. Under his tutelage, SHI has filed two patents and is recognized widely for its best practices in various areas, the latter, currently featured in Indian Institute of Management (IIM) case studies. SHI also became a CMMI Level 3, PCMM Level 3, and ISO 20000 certified organization. Alok is a widely acclaimed corporate leader in India today. He regularly participates and leads various forums as a keynote speaker and is an author of several books in different genres. Alok has several awards to his credit. He is particularly known in the industry for his people management skills and innovative ideas in improving the productivity of employees through unique people practices. He has been credited with the following industry awards: ¬ Emerging Leader of the Year award 2013 by ¬ Game Changer CEO of the Year 2013 (SHRM) ¬ CIO 100 - The Bold CIOs - 2008 (Reliance Infosolutions) ¬ CIO - Ones to Watch Award 2008 (Reliance Industries) ¬ Extended Manager Award - CIOL 2004 (Tata Teleservices) As an able leader of SHI, Alok got SHI recognized widely in the industry with the following several awards: ¬ CII Award for HR Best Practices in 2014 ¬ Global Excellence in Outsourcing Award - AIOP (Phoenix 2013) ¬ IT Innovation Award (Design & Engineering) - Computer Society of India 2012 ¬ Golden Company of the Year - Economic Times 2011-12 ¬ 7th Employer Branding Awards - World HRD Congress (Mumbai, India) 2013: • ‘Asia’s Best Employer’ Award • ‘Best HR Strategy’ in line with business • HR Leadership Award • Talent Management Award by Bloomberg TV India ¬ Employer Branding Awards - World HRD Congress (Singapore, Asia) 2013: • 7th rank in ‘Asia’s Best Employer’ award • Award for ‘Best HR Strategy’ in line with the business • HR Leadership Award Other recognitions: Alok had served on the distinguished panel of NASSCOM's GIC (Global In-house Centers) National Council members. The council members play a key role in major initiatives of the industry and include the torch bearers of IT industry as panel members. Books and Papers: Alok is an established author, with three books to his credit. Alok’s third and latest book, a novel, “The Spy from Unaula” is a 2015 publication. A handwriting analysis enthusiast, Alok collaborated with his wife Nandani on the book, “Handwriting Speaks” in 2006. “Value Sourcing – Future of IT Outsourcing” was co-authored with Keith Sherwell (currently CIO, Altice USA) and was released in 2013. Alok also researched and published two whitepapers: a. “Creating next generation captives” talks about the best practices that are helping generate higher value from the IT company captives.

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1 Response

  1. Anand Deshpande says:

    Very well articulated story Alok. Many of us would be able to connect with it. The title of the post is also great. Thank you.

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