When we are asked to stand up and speak, we tend to run out of words; sometimes ideas too; even though we have already prepared. The stage fright is often a common occurrence.
When we sit to write, we feel like timid mice in presence of a ferocious Grammar Cat. When we know the subject there is no reason whatsoever that we should not be in a position to sit down and write @ 20 words per minute, faster if you type.
We don’t have to do all the grammar exercises that scared us during our school days. But we definitely have to brush up tenses, auxiliaries & modals, prepositions, articles etc. Not a tall order; just a few hours of serious work.
How it will help? You will be able to express yourself clearly, effectively and more importantly in a style that is appreciated because it is easy to understand. And then, there are FOUR simple rules to follow:
- Choose nouns over adjectives. Nouns give you the crisp information. Adjectives make the reader wonder. In our written communication, our objective should be ‘the ease of business’; If it’s a businessman, he doesn’t want any unnecessary hurdles, and so the reader would not like to face any hurdles in understanding your message.
- Choose verbs over adverbs. Verbs are giving information about the actual action, while adverbs describe the quality of action. For example instead saying “he went to the hospital quickly” it will be more effective to say, “He rushed to the hospital”.
- You can make your message more effective by using specific words instead of general words. Instead of saying, “ I will call you next week about this problem,” say “I will call you on Thursday (or any other day) afternoon about request by Ramesh for transfer.”
- Choose short sentences instead of the long ones. But vary the length of the sentences. Otherwise it will appear boring.
You can easily follow the above simple precepts to make your communication natural, precise and interesting only when you have belled the Grammar Cat.
Thanks for reading.
Pursuit of knowledge has always been the hallmark of human development. There was never a time when the enlightened ones did not question “Why, How and When” of anything which is significant in life.
Even before the advent of books knowledge was shared by people at large through spoken words, most likely I the form of poetry and songs. The invention of printing press was a boon for those who wanted to share their knowledge as well as for those who wanted to learn.
Thus ever since John Gutenberg made his first printing press, the popularity of books have been growing by the day. Internet heralded yet another era of knowledge distribution. Google & Wikipedia added new dimension to the gift of learning which brought libraries at the disposal of the seekers to their homes and offices.
Books could now be downloaded. But now came a problem. The highly competitive world today created an acute paucity of time. The tremendous growth of cities all over the world further aggravated the problem. Commuting time in the cities is increasing at an unimaginable pace. And now comes the audio book which will prove a big boon to all those who want to keep wandering in the pursuit of knowledge.
Thanks for reading.
Non Performing Assets pose a serious problem for the health of the financial sector in our Country. At the outset let us understand the definition of NPA. In simple terms NPAs refers to loans given by Banks and Financial Institutions that remain unpaid either on account of the outstanding principal and/or interest thereon.
According to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) “an asset, including a leased asset, becomes non performing when it ceases to generate income for the Bank”. Thus, a ‘non performing-asset’ (NPA) was defined as a credit facility in respect of which the interest and/or instalment of principal has remained past due for a specified period of time.
The technical classification of an NPA was revised from time to time and from the year 31st March, 2004 onwards, the 90 days due norm was laid down whereby an NPA would be a loan / advance where:
- interest and/ or installment of principal remain overdue for a period of more than 90 days in respect of a term loan,
- the account remains ‘out of order’ for a period of more than 90 days, in respect of an Overdraft/Cash Credit (OD/CC),
- the bill remains overdue for a period of more than 90 days in the case of bills purchased and discounted,
- interest and/or installment of principal remains overdue for two harvest seasons but for a period not exceeding two half years in the case of an advance granted for agricultural purposes, and
- any amount to be received remains overdue for a period of more than 90 days in respect of other accounts.
Let us now look at some of the causes for Non Performing Assets. Major reasons progressively increase levels of NPA are:
- Ineffective Recovery Methods: The legal process of the law in our country is known to be long and winding. Even measures such as creation of Debt Recovery Tribunals for the expeditious recovery of loans have proved to be quite ineffective.
- Willful Defaults: Willful Defaulters, clearly the single biggest headache of the Banking System, are those having the means to repay but who manage to evade the recovery mechanism through various clever means.
- Defective Lending Process: Safety, Liquidity and Profitability are the cardinal principles of lending. Often times Bankers disregard these basic tenets of Banking and lend to borrowers of sub standard quality and doubtful intent or capacity to repay. An adequate credit appraisal system must be followed to ensure loans are only given to those willing and capable to repay.
- Economic Reasons: The general economic downturn in the world economy has also had an impact particularly on industries which are export driven with demand growth particularly in the developed world falling in recent times.
- Lack of technological Upgradation and Competition from Imports: Indian Manufacturing Industries have particularly faced competition from large scale imports particularly from China. Since Chinese products produced at a very large scale have been able to edge out Indian made products in many market segments leading to closure of businesses and consequent NPAs.
Over the past quarter of a century successive union governments have grappled with this problem through a variety of legislative and executive measures. These include:
- Debt Recovery Tribunals (DRT Act 1993): The earliest measure taken to address this challenge was the constitution of Debt Recovery Tribunals under the Recovery of Doubtful Debts to Banks and Financial Institutions Act 1993 (DRT Act). The DRTs were supposed to resolve application of the Bank for recovery of loan amounts within a period of six months.
- Credit Information Bureau (2001): The establishment of the Creation of Credit Information Bureau of India Ltd. (CIBIL) as a common platform for sharing credit information of borrowers to prevent erring defaulters from tapping alternative sources of funds after loan defaults.
- Compromise Settlements (OTS): Under the guidelines of RBI issued from time to time, Banks were given the authority to negotiate one time settlement under an OTS scheme where Banks took a hair cut both on the interest and partly upon the principal which was repaid in lumpsum.
- SARFAESI Act (2002): The Securitization and Reconstruction of Financial Assets and Enforcement of Security Interest Act, 2002 (SARFAESI Act) was passed in order to permit Banks and financial institutions to recover NPAs without the intervention of the Courts. Using the provisions of this Act, Banks were empowered to take over secured assets and either sells such assets through auction sale or control the management of such assets until the same are sold as a going concern.
- Asset Reconstructions Companies (ARCs): ARCs are specially created entities registered under the provisions of the SARFEASI Act with the RBI, for unlocking value to Banks and Financial institutions who wanted to take stressed assets off their balance sheets. ARCs take over the stressed Assets through Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs) and help the Banks make recovery on doubtful or loss assets which are transferred at deep discounts.
- Corporate Debt Restructuring (2005): Corporate Debt Restructuring (CDR) Mechanism is a voluntary non-statutory system based on Debtor-Creditor Agreement (DCA) and Inter-Creditor Agreement (ICA) and the principle of approvals by super-majority of 75% creditors (by value) which makes it binding on the remaining 25% to fall in line with the majority decision.
- Strategic Debt Restructuring (2015): Under this scheme Banks having outstanding loans repayable by Corporate Borrowers are given the right to convert (wholly or partly) such loans into equity shares in borrowing company. This minimizes the cash outflow in the stressed asset while giving the Bank a right to participate in the management and exit after the business stabilizes and recovers.
- Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (2016): Seeking to consolidate the existing framework by creating a single law for insolvency and Bankruptcy, the I&BC Code outlines separate insolvency resolution processes for individuals, companies and partnership firms. The process may be initiated by either the debtor or the creditors. A maximum time limit, for completion of the insolvency resolution process, has been set for Corporates and individuals. For companies, the process will have to be completed in 180 days, which may be extended by 90 days, if a majority of the creditors agree.
- Amendment to Sec. 35A of Banking Regulation Act, 1935 (2017): Most recently, the promulgation of the Banking Regulation (Amendment) Ordinance, 2017 has witnessed the insertion of two new Sections (viz. 35AA and 35AB) after Section 35A of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 which enable the Union Government to authorize the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to direct banking companies to resolve specific stressed assets by initiating insolvency resolution process, where required. The RBI has also been empowered to issue other directions for resolution, and appoint or approve for appointment, authorities or committees to advise banking companies for stressed asset resolution.
As experience shows, the above stated measures have only been met with varying degrees of success. Clearly, a careful and caliberated approach, with the active involvement of all stake holders is required to deal with this challenging problem. We do seem to have a government that is serious about this issue. Interesting times lie ahead.
The above article has been written by Mr. Amit Kakri on invitation. As requested by some readers, we will now have articles written by experts on subjects like MANAGEMENT, ECONOMY, FINANCE, CDOMPLIANCE, HUMAN RESOURCES, BUSINESS HUMOR etc. Further suggestions are invited.
Thanks for reading.
Education is necessary, but skills are essential. Unfortunately, our education system per se is such that it hardly helps an individual develop skills. Much less the skills, I think, are most important for living life happily and successfully. I am talking about two skills in particular –
- Skill of managing self.
- Skill of managing relationships.
A child is born with some tendencies which may have a lot to do with his/her parentage. What is his father’s attitude to life, what is that of his mother, and more importantly how is their relationship with each other. While these factors continue to have their influence on the growth of the child, various other influences start playing an important role during the growing years. The teacher, the class mates, friends, relatives, and neighbors – all influence the child. It is hard to say how much these help in developing either of the two skills which I have mentioned above – skill with self, and skill with other people.
So what should be done? What are the best steps that can be taken by all concerned for developing both these skills – skill with self & skill with people?
The education system, as it is today, can hardly help. Teachers are bound by the curriculum and the parents may not be able to find the time from their busy schedule in the modern competitive life. But the ever growing media today can play a very important role provided parents are able to guide and regulate the exposure and use of the media by the child.
The significance of Internet must not be undermined. All the knowledge required is available on the net. But one may say that a skill cannot be delivered by the information/knowledge on the net. Yes it is true to a large extent. Yet, you tube presentations and other interactive programs make it possible to learn a lot from the net. In times to come, I am sure; the growth of the social media with websites focusing on special subjects will bring about a revolution in the concept of education and training. The need is that the parents, teachers and mentors motivate learners to be focused and stick to what they need to do. They should not be distracted.
Developing skill with yourself, to me, means your ability to listen and talk to your own self. It also means to understand your heart, identify what you really like. Thereafter, one needs to concentrate one’s energies towards these. You must leverage your talent and your fondness.
Developing skill with people, simple means to understand basic human psychology. Your interaction with them should never ignore the following fundamental principles;
- That each person is interested in himself/herself more than you.
- That I, me, mine put people off.
- That making people talk makes them feel important.
- That when you win an argument you lose a friend.
- That listening attentively to others will impress them. They like you most when you do that.
- That you need to skillfully convince people. If you say something that is obviously to your advantage, people will be skeptical. So do it differently. Say how an important third person appreciated your products/efforts/services. This will help build confidence in the minds of people about you.
Thanks for reading.