“So, the choice comes down to one being motivated by either carrots or sticks” I get told during a conversation over coffee at the college. Where did that come from? Well, I thought the same and asked “Carrot who?”. He chuckled and that is how our conversation went along. We’ll come back to that, but before anything else, here’s who we’re speaking with – our featured alumnus this month, Baibhav Adhikari, identifies himself as an introverted, happy 9-5 human.
Baibhav says he lives with a dichotomy of being the laziest yet the most hard-working person in a room. Professionally, he is associated with Jaquar & Company Nepal and has been contributing to the business development of its Wellness Division. And, academically, he holds an MBA in marketing.
So, back to the carrots and sticks…
Is there an inside joke related to carrot and stick? What is it?
B: “Haha! Not really. For me, what most people call boring and overly demanding actually has a side that motivates me. The routine, predictability and a defined set of goals of being employed by an organization – opposed to being self employed – motivates me. This is the “carrot” for me based on my experiences with past jobs as well. On the other hand, for me again, the uncertainty of not having such a defined level of clarity is a “stick”. That’s where carrots and sticks came from. This is why I prefer having a day job rather than starting a venture of my own.”
You also mentioned that you’re an introvert and are into marketing. But there are assumptions that a marketing person needs to be outgoing, should avoid awkward silences, and basically be an extrovert. So, how do you find the rhythm between such polarities?
B: “Like you said, they are assumptions. And I would really not consider them as polarities either. Importantly, finding a balance between your personality and your work always becomes easier when you have a clarity about who you are and what you are getting into. I believe that I have an understanding regarding both. So, that is what helps me do good at my job with a little bit of silence and a lot more sense”.
You also talked about being a happy 9 to 5 person. How do these co-exist – especially in context of how glamorized starting your own business is these days?
B: “Well, there is no denying that getting to start your own thing and not having to wait for a payday is one of the best feelings in the world. However, what I personally feel is, everyone is free to choose and work for what makes them happy. Being happy doesn’t have to be the same thing for everyone. For me, I prefer not to have to deal with uncertainties. I would not enjoy the risks associated with a venture of my own and being able to have a defined goal helps me to sleep sound at night. So, 9-5 has been a fulfilling choice so far”.
After our short conversation, I came away feeling that everyone has the ability to define their own version of happiness. There is always someone at the coffee shop talking about how rigid a 9 to 5 life is or talking about how much their job sucks. There is always someone at Twitter or Instagram announcing how they quit their jobs in order to go after their dream of becoming an entrepreneur. Also, there are people excitedly calling their family to share about their promotions, performing their everyday duties, and happy at their little desks. And both are okay because at the end, it is always what makes one happy is what matters the most.