The Convergence of Brands!…An extract

……..Technically speaking, any registered trademark/name/logo is treated as a brand name. There are already millions of registered trademarks in the world and many more will be registered. However, in its true essence, brand is only a perception in the mind of a consumer. All corporate warfare, struggle to increase market share, boost sales, capture markets, expand regions, sustain growth and increase loyalty to product(s) or service(s) is actually a battle of brands. The brands battle to create a favourable perception in the minds of prospects. Thus, all brands are engaged in a battle of perceptions……..

For further reading this article, please visit http://www.mba-tutorials.com/marketing/14-the-convergence-of-brands.html

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All Around the Mulberry Bush – Pop Goes the Weasel !!!

All around the mulberry bush

The monkey chased the weasel.

The monkey thought ’twas all in fun.

Pop! Goes the weasel.

“The death toll from rain-related accidents in different areas of the city has risen to 28 while over a hundred people have also been injured following Saturday’s thunder-shower.” (http://www.dawn.com/wps/wcm/connect/dawn-content-library/dawn/news/pakistan/metropolitan/11-rain-toll-rises-to-28-as-family-of-four–nine-others-die–il–01).

This happens to be the latest yet modest feather in the cap. Hats off to everyone responsible!! Well done! That’s the team spirit! “Live together and kill together”. The show must go on till the last breath, of the poor (prone to easy victimization) nation.

A penney for a spool of thread,

A penney for a needle.

That’s the way the money goes.

Pop! goes the weasel.

Inflation maximized; food inflation quadrupled; fuel prices up; money devalued; subsidies removed; innumerous indirect taxes imposed; foreign reserves exhausted; all fair & innocent penalized; indebted to all & sundry with a commitment to form a cut-poor-throat policy framework; media restricted; non growth-oriented cum non people-friendly budget for the already crushed, both the country and its people; country’s image crucified; nation transformed to be a thing of pity; law & order a thing of the past; street crimes are the “in” thing, growing in popularity like the crazy, frenzied rock-star; the list is long.

Wrong, it is infinite.

 “Com’on guys! Think of something quick. What else can we do to screw those bloody insects out there (or do we think of them any better than insects?).” (At least they think!)”Hey, this time probably we do not have to do anything but rather we don’t DO anything against the upcoming Monsoon rains!”.

Executed. Mission successful.

Up and down the City Road,

In and out of the Eagle,

That’s the way the money goes.

Pop! goes the weasel!!

The delimma of real world

Many weeks and many incidents later. I finally found something compelling enough to write amidst a damn hectic life (do not doubt my processor scheduling capability, its more of a memory overflow).

By the grace of Almighty, me and my wife were blessed with a daughter last week. Provided that our first and beloved son, Amaan,  had lost the 6 months long battle against his life last year, the birth of another baby was an emotional situation too overwhelming to tackle initially. Especially when it was a high risk pregnancy for my wife this time; a pregnancy where the mother and the child were threatened with life from Day 1.

What had gone wrong with my son or what we have been through the last two years is only enough to be covered in books; a few hundred lines on a web page just won’t be able to handle it. There is too much to tell, reciprocate or cherish. Indeed, there are no regrets. To keep it short & simple, my son had been administered over 1400 injections (all 3rd generation anti-biotics) over the span of six months, besides innumerous blood tests / cultures and other investigations. On the day he died, a canola was made on his head since no other space was left un-drilled on his body; and yet the last thing I remember of him, before he bid us farewell, was his un-failing smile. What a heroic courage my son possessed….

Not getting drifted away and coming back to my wife’s recent c-section, it was another nightmare. In my entire life, I had never seen such unprofessional, irresponisble and unfriendly attitude of a hospital staff. With the exception of labour room staff and my wife’s doc Dr. Luman Shiekh (a person of great calibre, heart and profession; a beautiful person to know; indeed a gift of God to all those high-risk pregnant women out there- while not forgetting her companion Dr. Asma). Where the doctor cared and pampered us both emotionally and mentally, the disrespectful treatment of the B2 ward staff actually tortured our minds & hearts. There was no sense of hygine, ruthless treatment of child and absolutely non-cooperative, aggressive staff (this excludes a few, very few exceptions).

My wife was left in severe pains, after the c-section, without proper dosage of pain killers untill the concerned physician came on round and took strict notice of it. When discharged, the doctor on duty was negligent enough not to undo the wound’s dressing, left to rot and create infections. My wife was fortunte to notice it on third day herself and notified the concerned persons who said, “Well, it’s not that big a negligence!!”. Even the removal of the dressing was done in a hurry and with highly un-professional attitude. However, a doctor on duty in labour room dept. took my number and said that some relevant person will call you and apologize for the mal-treatment that could have possibly turned into serious disorders. Let’s wait and see…

This was highly ironical given that the docs at AKUH were taking special interest in my daughter due to her sibling’s medical history. Probably that’s how they get the case studies.

My elaboration of the agonies I faced in Aga Khan University Hospital will continue. This is not to bring any bad name to the prestigious institution, but to bring to notice to the authorities what is going wrong right under their noses. I know quite a few of the influential oldies / starters of AKUh who are gems of persons and an institution in theemselves, but the tradition is dying out. In my recent most encounter, I honestly felt as if I were at some funds-deprived, neglected government hospital haunted by ghost doctors.

I wonder if they are accountable to anybody or anyone will stand up and speak…

The world of Brands

One fine morning I wake up by the loud alarms of my “Sony Ericcson CyberShot K790i”, turns the alarm off, turn off my “Mitsubishi” split, look at my “Citizen’s” wall clock (Wow! am on time! ), get up from my “Molty Ortho” foam (It’s hard to leave you but…) put on a “Habbit’s” teak-wood bed, wear my “Chen-one’s” slippers and get into the relax room. After getting done with my “Sensodyne” toothpaste, “Axe” Shower gel, I come out and dry myself to put on “Docker’s” Khakis and “Marks & Spencer” Shirt; a “Mont Blanc” cuffling,  a “Silkskin” tie and a “Hush Puppies” footwear.  I like to have “Kellog’s” cereals with “Nestle” milk in the morning accompanies with a “Lipton” tea. Before leaving home, I wear my “Brietling’s” wrist watch, put on “Azzaro”, lit a “B & H – Duty Free” ciggeratte and walk out to my “Suzuki” car outside.

Without even noticing, we are living in the world of brands. So much so that our lives are being governed by it. There are even more brand names involve in my brisk one hour of the mroning which I didn’t mention, like the “French” most couple exchange before parting or those invisible to the naked eye. 

Most companies have used the art of branding to their way up the leadership ladder. Building brand equity, brand recall, brand essence and brand focus on their way.

Procom.Net 2009 defeats terrorism

Procom.Net 2009 is being held today – on 2nd May, Saturday at FAST-NU Main campus amidst city violence and law & order insecurities. Two “Thumbs- up” to Ammar Faheem (www.ammar360.com), President Procom.Net, his entire team and the faculty of FAST-NU. Well done!!!

Originally scheduled to be a two-day event (30th April & 1st May), Procom was reduced to an abridged version by the ethnic violence that erupted in the city on the night of Wednesday. Gloom prevailed and the event seemed to be in doldrums. The participants were stuck and was waiting wih their fingers crossed to hear the new date, if any. There came Mr. Ammar with his excellent pressure-handling skills backed by his reliable team; and announced the new date. The timings are 9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.

More than 400 participants comprising 150+ teams from all over the country thronged the 12 competiions being held.  Overall, the crowd has surpassed 800 figure. That includes representtaives from 10 or more sponsors, FAST-NU senior faculty members, industry executives, participants, students and visitors. I could see media people taking snaps as well but the media information is yet to come. 

These young bright individuals together have given a very strong message to all the terrorists and negative elements of the society out there….”We have defeated violence; We have defeated terrorism; We have defeated all conspiracies to sabotage our progress and We’ve beaten all the odds….We rise above all problems and we are the Champions, the future, the Winner”

I recall a song here, although its indian, but the intent here is to deliver the message

” Yahan kai hum sikandar……….hari baazi ko jeetnaaa humay ata hai !” 

Play Ball!!!

The point I want to make is…

There are two rules in the corporate world:

Rule no. 1 : Boss is always right

Rule no. 2 : Follow Rule no.1

This applies to almost every situation. Be it democracy, socialism or dictatorship. If the boss tells you that you have not been productive enough, despite your innumerous initiatives and efforts and major changes you have brought about the work and workplace, you should not hesitate to tailor your meaning of productivity with his/hers.

Someone once said to me that people do not leave companies, they leave their bosses. If that is true, then probably when people stay at a comapny they are actually staying with the boss.