PERSONAL FINANCE


Where is the silver lining in the current gloom and doom? Sometimes, I wish I were a soothsayer and could tell which way the world and our lives are moving. While one may not want to know every detail of what’s going to happen to us, one wonders how things will pan out in the uncertain world...

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Practise thrift and prudence during boom times For several businesses and individuals in India, the month of March signifies many things. On the one hand, everyone is scrambling to meet targets and complete financial accounts. On the other hand, people are looking forward to year-end bonuses...

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Some ideas on what to do if you are stuck between a boss and a subordinate who communicate better "I am stuck between my boss and subordinate. They are good friends and everything I do is constantly watched,” screamed Vijay who had come over for counselling. He had been stressed for many months...

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Insurance companies and their incentivised agents push unit-linked plans through high-octane marketing. Avoid them. Unit-linked plans (ULIPs) have been dominating our collective conscience when we think about insurance plans. This is because of the hard-sell tactics of insurance companies...

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One without the other does not make for leadership We have all been shocked and alarmed by the recent events at Satyam. However, the deepest hurt to society at large has been the betrayal of faith over so many years. The anger one feels against those involved exposes our own vulnerability. As...

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Make sure you are not trying too hard to please others We were on a short break at the end of the year when my sister made an interesting observation. She said that sometimes we work harder than we need to, just to please people and make relationships work. This can actually backfire and work...

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Keeping a job is not just about achieving targets It is interesting to note that so many companies, chief executive officers, leaders in human resources and other experts spend so much time on the issue of employee retention. On the other hand, it is assumed that employees work at retaining...

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It’s painful but you can handle it. Here are four ways totackle the crisis Losing a job is more of a reality today in India than it was ever before. We all know that companies are cutting costs and, in the process, managers are bound to lose jobs. The other change is that everybody is aware of...

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The way you interact speaks volumes about your personality The other day, a friend and I were talking about a common acquaintance. Neither of us knows this person too well, but had met him a couple of times socially and professionally. However, both of us carried a very positive image of the...

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Don’t panic, make up your own mind about your company's future Last week, a young manager came over for career advice. He works with a mid-size marketing company. Things were going fine till one of their investors pulled out. The firm remains operational, since they have other investors who...

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A cross-section of experiences of remote workers The other day, my colleagues and I got talking about working from remote locations. The thought was triggered by one of our team-mates who is working remotely for a while and is enjoying it. However, she said to us that she is happy only because...

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If you are likely to turn down a job offer during a downturn, because they are not attractive enough, handle it tactfully Imagine that! You are almost out of a job, you get a job offer and you say no. Why would you do it and how does it impact you? Recently, I heard of a situation like that. A...

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Grand weddings, parental pressure and the availability of easy loans have wrecked several promising young lives. They burnt up lakhs of rupees to make the family look good for a few days, only to face a future of financial trauma and depression. Nutan Lugani, a committed consumer activist,...

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Four ways to take guard during emergencies We are suddenly passing through difficult times. We have been afflicted by calamities – natural or otherwise – and we all feel like victims of events that are not under our control. It makes us vulnerable and tough at the same time. It is important to...

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Personality tests can be of great help in advancing your career Personality tests are conducted in most managerial assessment programmes. The aim of such tests is to let you know the person inside of you and how s/he steers your life. It is of great value to understand your true self, nature...

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Redundancy is not a reflection of your performance, so be confident and truthful The other day, I was conducting interviews and met a person who had lost his job recently. He actually fared quite well and yet made some classic errors that people normally make in such situations. This set me...

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You can put administrative controls but judicious use of the Net is a matter of corporate culture I have often been asked about standard operating procedures for access to the Internet and use of technology at the workplace. My answer has been simple. Lay down the rules, curb high-risk factors...

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Faced with balancing domestic issues vs office responsibilities, work towards finding a solution The title of this article may appear to be misleading. This is not about financial support to family but about emotional backing and sustenance for loved ones. You might be wondering about the...

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How to choose executive education programmes? Here are some pointers I have written in the past about the need for mid-career academic inputs, not just in-house employer training programmes. I do believe it is important to revisit concepts and learn new theories a few years after you have...

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To do better, feel the delight of work and focus, to beat troubles My old gym coach and yoga-trainer came by to say hello the other day. He had recently travelled the world to learn new techniques in sports and fitness. He now trains for sports-related injuries and weakness. He told me how...

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