Aviyal-bit of everything


Posted on: November 30, 2010

India is considered as family oriented. West is considered/perceived as ‘does not care about family’ by many.

 And then this….

 In recent town hall , our new CEO was introducing himself, his vision for the company, his expectations etc. He said how he and his wife support each other, how much he learns from his 14 yr old son Nick, 10 yr old girl and 8 yr old girl. There many many references to kids in the conversation. In another case, the newly selected police chief was being introduced in the city hall as ‘family man, he has 2 kids and soon to be grandpa’. Obamas always tell us about how normal a family they are ( with lot of pics too). An election victory is always celebrated with spouse/ significant and kids, if applicable on stage other by the side( rem Palin family for the campaign).

 And then this..

 I cannot remember any CEOs or Senior managers of an Indian company were introduced with his family information. When was the last time (ever) I saw family picture of an Indian leader? Or family celebrating a festivity together? Any leader campaigning with spouse/family  in tow?

 Family orientation for real???

enlighten me please..


4 Responses to "Irony"

I think (emphasis on I and think 🙂 ), as individuals Indians are family-oriented. Mom quitting work, so she thinks she can spend more time with her kids or a dad rejecting a promotion if accompanied by xfer (and so on and so forth) is quite common in India. Nobody raises any questions, and ppl understand / accept it as standard practice. That way the Western world is more individualistic and these acts might not be looked upon so favorably. But as a group (be it at work etc), Indians probably celebrate things individually (while the family remains in the background) whereas it is the other way around over here.

All these are not conclusions but more like thinking out loud. What are your thoughts?

Disclaimer: This is gross-generalization, exception is present everywhere and things are changing, quite rapidly at that

“Indians probably celebrate things individually (while the family remains in the background) whereas it is the other way around over here “. It is a very individualistic behaviour, not family oriented.
Thanks akay for your perspective.

Interesting observation Mia. Ditto with my company as well. From the CEO to our business leader to my supervisor, everybody encourages to place family first.

I absolutely agree with what Akay has said. True, we are family oriented and act in collective interest of the family. Here, professional goals and family commitments are not considered mutually exclusive. Also, personal time is treated with respect.

I know a number of family members and friends in the IT field who sweat it out, working insane hours. There is no respect for personal time at all. Everybody by definition is expected to be a workaholic or atleast is expected to pretend like one. Makes me very very angry.

it is very weird. i also think we say something, do something else. I don’t quite agree for everything and anything indians say they have family orinted culture..that ‘s another post:)

I was thinking about this and couldn’t formulate a reply last week…the reason is I am conflicted. I think the difference between Indians and Westerners is the fact that we are very conservative (close mouthed)when it comes to family matters…we keep family and work separate. That does not mean we are “Not” family oriented…i think we are extremely family oriented -and I emphasise on extreme because such extremities raise expectations and bring heartache. Where as here in the West, people tend to be more open about everything…there’s nothing to hide here. Does that make them less family oriented? No, I dont think so. Yet they dont go to extremes for the sake of family here, which can be good and bad – the good thing is there are no expectations, even between parents and children, kids learn to be independent from a very young age earning their keep – parents let them, because one day they want them to leave their nest and start life on their own…the other side of it – ties are not strong enough, relationships are easily broken, there is no time for adjustment and endurance, am I making sense? So that’s why they say people from the east are more family oriented than people from the west…it is true to a certain extend i think, even the west admits it.

sorry for the late response UL. and thanks for sharing your perspective.

the answer i think is simple and obvious. the indian system is confident of the family, its stability -doesnt feel the need to flaunt it or assert its stability in public. sometimes, i feel the family is taken for granted.
it’s only when something is shaky or rare that much attention is paid to it.

it is sad when family is taken for granted, i feel. your family is the most precious. we care for gold..not for the faimily.
I fell it is okay to flaunt a bit…or may be I am saying ‘express love and care’.
somehow your comment reminds me of the song’ ellarum chollanu ellarum chollanu, kallanu nenjilennu…”

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