Competent Motors Limited
Rajender Kumar was a production worker at competent Motors Limited (CML) which made components and accessories for the automotive industry. He had worked at CML for almost seven years as a welder, along with fifteen other men in the plant. All had received training in welding both on the job and through company sponsored external programmes. They had friendly relations and got along very well with one another. They played Volleyball in the playground regularly before retiring to the quarters allotted by the company. They work together in the company canteen, cutting Jokes on each other and making fun of everyone who dared to step into their privacy during lunch hour. Most of the fellows had been there for some length of time, except for two men who had joined the ranks only two months back. Rajender was generally considered to be the leader of the group, so it was no surprise that when the foreman of the new was transferred and his job was posted, Rajender applied for the job and got it. There were only four other applicants for the job, two from mechanical section and two from outside, when there was a formal announcement of the appointment on a Friday afternoon, everyone in the group congratulated Rajender. They literally carried him on their shoulders, and bought him snacks and celebrated. On Monday morning, Rajender joined duty as Foreman. It was company practice for all foremen to wear blue jacket and a white shirt. Each man’s coat had his name badge sewn onto the left side pocket. The company had given two pairs to Rajender. He was proud to wear the coat to work on Monday. People who saw him from a distance went up to him and admired the new blue coat. There was a lot of kidding around calling Rajender as ‘Hero’, ‘Raja Babu’ and ‘Officer’ etc. One of the guys went back to his locker and returned with a long brush and acted as though he were removing dust particles on the new coat. After about five minutes of horseplay, all the men went back to work. Rajender went to his office to familiarize himself with the new job and environment. At noon, all the men broke for Lunch and went to the canteen to eat and take a break as usual. Rajender was busy when they left but followed after them a few minutes later. He bought the food coupon, took the snacks and tea and turned to face the open canteen. On the left-side corner of the room was his old work group; on the right-hand side of the canteen sat the other entire foreman in the plant—all in their smart blue coats. At that point of time, silence descended on the canteen. Both groups looked at Rajender anxiously, waiting to see which group he would choose to eat with.
1. Whom do you think Rajender will eat with? Why?
2. If you were one of the other foremen, what could you do to make Rajinder’s transition easier?