Monday, June 29, 2015

Chameleon effect

Mimicking others behaviour, that is what is written in Wikipedia for ‘chameleon effect’. During one of my agile workshops we were discussing about different cultures, and one of the participants who represented young India, asked me this fully loaded question, ‘Aby, when I travel to another country, or when I have to deal with customers from foreign lands, my organisation teaches me their culture and language. As per my country’s culture, guest is God. No body is teaching them this. Is it because we do not take pride in our own culture?’. ‘Aby, you do not speak neither British English nor American English’, that was a feedback for me after another scrum workshop. How can I speak British or American English. My parents are from India. I have never travelled to these countries yet, forget about living there for longer time. I feel at home, at home. How can a person like this speak English like them. In India, every state has a separate language. I am yet to see any of my foreign friends speaking even one sentence of Hindi fluently. Very often we waste our lives by trying to be somebody else. Recently my nephew who spent more than a decade in a foreign land told me that the citizens of that country respects him more when he lives like an Indian, following the Indian values and culture. If one keeps changing colours frequently trying to impress others, what will be the plight of that person after a while?. You are unique. Be proud of it. Understand other’s culture for the purpose of not offending anybody knowingly, but not to become like them. Even if you try, you will fail miserably. Self respect is a prelude to mutual respect. My friend Krishnakumar is on an American tour, and hopefully he will come back as Krishnakumar, not as Krish 

Here is the chameleon I photographed with my lumix fz200. Access to a camera always help. We do not know when an opportunity will strike. Be ready always, that is the mantra. Hope you will like this one :-)

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