Smile, please

Updated: Jul 31 2006, 06:26am hrs
Nowadays, there is no limit to what a shareholder can demand in an annual general meeting (AGM). Though the top management of a company remains geared to handle any situation arising out of questions by shareholders, sometimes they do get foxed by some.

For example, last week, when ICICI Bank, the countrys largest private sector bank, was holding its AGM in Vadodara, a shareholder stood up and wanted to know why the banks joint managing director, Kalpana Morparia, was looking so serious and was in non-smiling mode throughout the AGM. According to him, the results of the bank in the first quarter had been good and should be enough to bring a smile on Morparias face.

Cant she at least smile once and oblige he demanded. But even that seem to bring that elusive smile on the ladys face!

Elder basics

Holding on to human talent, especially the ones with experience, is a problem all companies face now. At a recent media interaction, a top professional from an Indian conglomerate was fielding questions on how his company, which has both the so-called old economy and new economy businesses, manages its human capital to ensure employees stick to the old businesses. Yes, there are more people willing to join the new businesses like telecom and retail, than steel and automotive, he said. Adding, Its like the print media and the television media. The journos, mostly from print, began disputing the illustration; the gentleman immediately chuckled, No offence meant. I was only trying to figure out how many of you are falling asleep in this room!