The Smart Techie was renamed Siliconindia India Edition starting Feb 2012 to continue the nearly two decade track record of excellence of our US edition.

December - 2011 - issue > In My Opinion

Jet-Fueled Technology: Managing Workforces in a Global Business Environment

Umesh Vaidyamath
Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Umesh Vaidyamath
Two decades ago, on July 4, 1990, I traveled on a plane from Mumbai to Kansas City, Kansas, in the heart of the U.S. Midwest, to take my first job in information technology. Many of you will remember the early nineties as the heydays of technology. We thought everything was possible – we worked long hours and we dreamed in code.

In many ways, we can now say that we delivered upon the promises of those dreams. Today, technology, written by programmers of decades past and enhanced by programmers today, fuels the global economy. Nearly everything we do is somehow connected to the infrastructures established two decades ago and built upon since then. And today’s programmers and IT professionals, continue to expand upon those original dreams.

But the growth spurts of the 1990s did more than just spread the potency of technology into every business sector. They also changed the face of how and where people work. When the first Indian programmers, in 1965, traveled from Mumbai, Delhi and Calcutta to New York, California and, yes, even Kansas, it was a major event in their lives and the lives of their families. To some extent, it was the same kind of experience for the immigrant professionals in the 1990s. Most of us were still used to staying in the area where we grew up, in maintaining residency in our native lands. The ones that left were cowboys. We were explorers in new lands. Well, more specifically, one land. In those days, the U.S. beckoned; here was where all opportunities lay.

The changing face of business

Today, we live in a completely different world. Business opportunities are everywhere. They are in the U.S., although less than they were two decades ago. They are in Canada and the U.K. They are in Russia, Sweden and Germany. And they are in the two newest major centers of global economy: China and India. Anyone who has ever had a stopover at the Bengaluru International Airport knows first-hand how the world has changed. Nearly half of the travelers to that airport aren’t Indian; they are from the U.S. and Europe.

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