Thursday, April 29, 2010

Late mark

In the Priydarshan movie, "Yeh Tera Ghar ,yeh mera ghar",the heroine is always late to office.Once ,she walks in, late as usual .Her boss is just waiting for her.He explodes " So,what is the reason for being late today ? " Mahima Chaudhary ,the heroine ,replies," Today ,there is a strike by the autos. I had to walk." The boss quips ," Yes,even if there was a strike by the pilots,you will still be late.Next time,you are late,please stay at home & write a book -listing numerous reasons for being late to office."

A  colleague in office had narrated the said scene to me .I enjoyed it again,when I saw it  on the idiot box.I was reminded of my office days  wherein, I was at the receiving end for marking the muster.I had this unenviable job, of marking employees late.Some people did come in time, while some were addicted to late arrivals.Ladies ,were rarely late .But ,again there were exceptions.The proximity of home to the office was responsible for late entries  in office.My husband used to joke that with people who live next door to the office will enter office after all have come in ! So,the employees were not to be blamed for arriving late !

Late marks would get condoned by requesting the boss.The boss would oblige most of the times.This used to bug me, as I could not understand as to why I was told to do some work which would be disregarded after a few minutes.Maybe,this was my boss's idea of keeping me occupied ! On second thoughts,all the bosses without exception, overlooked   late marks.This raised  their stature  in the eyes of the latecomers with my simultaneous degradation.So,it was a double edged sword.My requests to boss, that he must himself mark the muster were always brushed aside as the boss clarified that the employees must know that I am next to him, in hierarchy.And  all behaved, as if I never existed.

People who came in time could seek permission & leave early for any urgent work and or emergency .But some took this permission as if it was a right nah license.If you had the guts to enquire about the emergency,you would get such looks that you would live to regret a leftime ! But thankfully,as per rules,late marks & early goings were limited to three in a month.

The fourth late mark would lead to a deduction  of half day casual leave.But this situation rarely arose, thanks to  magnanimous bosses.One day,one die hard late comer, arrived late.It was his third late mark in that month.As the working hours drew to a close,he requested, that, he be allowed to leave early .I refused -reminding him that he had come late for the third time in a month.He pleaded ,that he had some emergency .Moreover ,he argued that others who had got three late marks had left early on some days .I stated that ,the boss had allowed it .The debate hotted up & he opined that he was leaving early.I warned him that half day casual leave will be deducted as per the personnel manual.He went & sought support from his colleagues.One female colleague said ," The officer is a fool.If I had been in her place,I would have deducted the half day without telling you ." That had the desired effect.He continued in office till the end of office hours.After all,he did not want to lose his half day  for nothing !

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