Corporate Bahubali – The Conclusion

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Note: This is the continuation and conclusion of a story given in two parts. It is recommended that you read the first part and continue if you already haven’t

The name of this architect was Devasena, and Balla requested Sivagami to have her allocated to his team for a project that was not even there. Sivagami went through resource management team and sought to get Devasena for Balla’s project. Leading the BU that accounted for more than 80% of the company’s business, Sivagami was not used to getting no for an answer. But that was exactly the answer she got from Devasena who, by that time, had wanted to join Bahu’s project.

Devasena’s fascination for Bahu was partly from his confidence and charisma,  but what helped cement it was his helping her with a very challenging technical problem during the course of the Hackathon. This was a problem that she had always been trying to solve, and the way he explained it made it appear so easy!

An offended Sivagami asked Kattappoka to directly allocate Devasena to their account, for few people in the company had the know-how to undo that allocation (thanks to the unfriendliness of the tool they used). Kattappoka conveyed this information to both Devasena and Bahu, and they were happy because they thought she’d be in Bahu’s team.

On the way back into office through city traffic, they spent a lot of time planning how they would bring state of the art digital technology into the account to help the client and grow the account. But destiny often has curious twists in store.

Sivagami was okay to forgive Devasena’s earlier arrogance but was not willing to compromise on her being part of Balla’s project. The PMO tried to own up and clear the mix up (as the poor guy was used to), but to no avail. “Either agree to let go of Devasena or let Balla be the AM”, said the BU head in the tone of an ultimatum.

Wanting to honour the word he had given to Devasena and wishing to build on the plans they had weaved, Bahu opted for the ace architect. He also remembered Sivagami’s words back in days when she mentored him and Balla as junior team leads, that on no account should the aspirations of team members or interests of the client be compromised.

Bahu impressed the client to win a huge development project in mobility area and while both he and Devasena were busy in its delivery, Balla relieved Bahu of his project management responsibilities and made it look like he was actually doing a favour. Sivagami was helpless because it was the account manager’s prerogative to decide who had what responsibility within the account.

The new project manager assigned by Balla brought in too many difficult and counter-productive processes making life further difficult for those who were really interested in the success of the project. When Bahu and Devasena objected to this and other outdated SDLC processes, asking to adopt agile instead, they were further relegated from decision making roles to hands-on work on the project.

It may be argued that they got what they asked for, since agile is a model where there is no clear hierarchy, everybody is  open to doing what the project needs them to do, and the entire team works as one making quick progress.  Bahu and Devasena worked hand in hand with the team and led by example through difficult phases of development and testing.

Corporate Bahubali - Bahu was good at hands-on technical stuff and also mentored junior members
Bahu was good at hands-on technical stuff and also mentored junior members

Balla became unhappy with the success of the project, and by making it look like Bahu had compromised client confidential information by involving the team in high-level discussions and thus putting the company at risk, he got Sivagami to order Kattappoka to terminate Bahu’s allocation to the account and release him into the talent pool. (This is the kind of tragic situation that cannot be fully comprehended without the aid of background music).

He spent a few days there and knowing that there were no other opportunities in those times of recession in his company or any other, decided to quit the field and make a living as a taxi driver. He had a family to feed and a home loan to pay off, after all.

All this happened on the same night that Devasena was busy with production deployment, and as soon as the project was delivered, she was also relegated from her key position to doing some mundane work in the account. Sivagami came to know of the dirty politics of which she was also made a part but, before she could act, Balla worked with his godfather (yes, every character has an important role in our story) to throw Sivagami also out of the company.

Balla also wanted to kill Bahu’s dream project, but luckily the client gave the contract for support and future enhancements in that app to a different vendor. Frustrated, Balla destroys the Mobility practice of which Devasena was a part by directly giving mobility training to non-billable resources within his account.

Sivagami was too old to find another job and was content to spend time with her grandchildren. But to amend for her sins, she used her contacts to get Bali, a promising fresher recruited by Bahu and Devasena, a position in another fast-growing company.  Incidentally, this was the same company in charge of supporting the application we just talked about.

From his early days, unlike his colleagues and managers, Bali had interest in development, architecture and project management. He was not content with just supporting an application and fixing any defects that came from time to time.

On one occasion, he surprised everybody by fully automating the tiresome process of generating a very complex report that his manager used to spend hours preparing every week.  A senior member in the HR predicted that there is great glory in store for this one.

Corporate Bahubali - Bali doing the technical heavylifting required for automation
Bali doing the technical heavy-lifting required for automation

He further worked his way up to being the manager for this engagement, and the client was also very happy with him. Along with a young promising architect who specialized in artificial intelligence, which was the hot technology at that time (yeah, we’re more current now), he had grand plans.

Having gone through the code of the mobile application and wanting to work with the architect who designed it, who was still with Mahishmati Infotech, Bali and his architect join MI.

There, through their superlative ability, rapport with the client (remember, this is the same client across two vendors) and with slight help from our old PMO Kattappoka, who was still in pretty much the same role and whom we hope our readers have not forgotten, they established their rightful place in the account by managing to throw Balla out of the company. (That is where client pressure helps)

Devasena became the new BU head as Bali became the account manager. Let us end things on a happy note by not mentioning the looming threat of another recession.

Epilogue: An unverified report states that Bahu who ended up as a taxi driver was able to ride on the surging wave of app-taxis and was able to make more money than many of his colleagues who chose to remain in the field. After all, good things happen to good people.

Disclaimer: All characters in this story are imaginary (imagined by me or somebody else). Any relation to people you know will only have made the reading more interesting.

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