Sunday, September 8, 2013

What's your social quotient?

"This term has been used to describe the result of a measure that describes one's overall level of social intelligence." 
The above is the web definition for the term 'social quotient.' It sounds plain and simple yet has deeper insights of late. 
Say about a decade or two ago, a person with a good IQ was the most sought after in all spheres. Times have been changing, and as part of change, came into existence a new term called emotional quotient. Emotional quotient (EQ) was the new catch word as it had to do with human emotions, which is a delicate subject to deal with. A person who was able to control him/her self's emotions and adapt to various situations in life was deemed the ideal match for all practical purposes. 
Whilst coming down the order of  'quotients' in human lives, I do not want to miss out on something called 'spiritual quotient.' Back in school days, I used to attend Bhagvad Gita satsangs, part of Chinmaya Yuva Kendra; where a group of youngsters got together to discuss their religious/philosophical views. These classes used to be quite rational and unbiased hence they never got boring. During these meets, we were introduced to the term 'spiritual quotient,' and were told that anybody with a spiritual inclination could be considered to have 'SQ'. It was something that set humans apart from both machines and animals, we were told. However I believe nobody really took the term SQ in its true essence and it began to be interchangeably used with the term religion (spirituality is often misinterpreted as being religious which would spur up a whole new debate hence I am not getting there). I could perhaps coin a new term here called RQ (Religious Quotient)!
 Anyway, having said something about IQ, EQ and SQ quite briefly, coming back to where I began, SQ(now social quotient), I must say that this is the in-thing now... I feel social quotient these days is all about social networking, perhaps the term could be slightly altered to sound better, "social networking quotient." If you google out the list of social networking websites, they are given in alphabetic order, and the list seems to be endless and expanding like the population explosion in India! 
To not have an account on FB(Face Book) is considered primitive and old fashioned. (I am using FB for reference here only because it is the first thing that comes off the top of my head). I am not against any of the social networking sites as they are excellent means to communicate/keep in touch. Social Quotient seems to have acquired a new meaning and purpose because having an account on FB/Twitter/LinkedIn etc., means one is quite up to date with everything that is happening in the so-called society/community. I personally have both an FB&LinkedIn account and feel they are an absolutely great innovation in social media. 
Nonetheless, I firmly believe innovation is good only when used judiciously. You suddenly feel the whole world is watching you, as if you have no private life to lead. Every little thing is 'facebooked' or 'twittered' or the relatively newer kid on the block, 'watsapped' (thanks to the language, we are able to keep coining newer terms). One visits a mall/restaurant these days not just for shopping/enjoying good food, the need seems to be more for clicking pictures that are compatible for social networking. Thanks to the technology revolution that is taking place on a day to day basis, that we have mobile phones to keep up with all the competition. Each time I visit a mall or a restaurant, I at least find one group of people (not necessarily youngsters), who are busy posing for pics that could be instantly shared! It has become a social status and one is looked down-upon if they choose to follow the old school thought- where in a phone is something that is used for making phone calls or at the most, texting! Posting a status update, (may be it would be the most trivial thing that happened to them that day) serves for good conversation starters amongst many. I have observed this in my very own work place! Some of them may not even be friends in reality, but they pretend to be the  best of buddies in the eyes of the 'social' world. Anybody who is a newbie on social networking, is bombarded down right!  A person's name shows "online/available" as soon as he/she logs in, and it could be for his/her own personal reasons. I bet there is a group right behind you, that watches, or rather stalks every move/activity of yours and is more keen than you are about your personal/private life. Come on, just because I am online, does not mean that I am necessarily doing something on the web page. I could just be signed in to one thing and engrossed in some other thing of my interest or may be I just forgot to sign out, as simple as that!
The points I've been trying to emphasize here is, let us make some good use of the resources we have in abundance, rather than brooding over trivia. When used for the right cause, I am sure social networking sites are great agents of change and development, especially in an extremely volatile country like ours!
                                               So what’s your social quotient...?! :-)

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