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Note: This post assumes minimum knowledge of cost accounting terminology. Also anything that has ‘account’ in it written by an engineer would be highly sarcastic. You are warned!

Scene 1 (Location: our very own parliament house, Time: just after a loksabha winter session)

Speaker: (Sigh!) another round of mindless damage to this house. Last year during the same session the damages were estimated at 50 lakhs. This year the situation looks worse. Huh, in the next session opposition will fume about more wastage than theirs..,

Dept. Speaker: you are right Mr. speaker. High time we called the BGC [Bust-in Group of Consultants] to measure the damages and allocate them in to the respective states/departments.

Speaker: Ok!, lets meet the BGC people over the weekend.

Scene 2 (Location: Office of Speaker. Time: over the weekend. Please note that there were 2 consultants in the room along with speaker, dept. speaker and 2 ministers.)

Speaker gives intro to the consultants on the nature of task they have in hand.

Consult1: considering the fact that you want us to evaluate the damages happened to the highest house of the very own country in which we are living, lets begin the process by sensitizing ourselves with the nature and extent of (somewhere here the politicians fainted.) the job in the hand and lets appreciate the fact that we need to complete this task only after gathering the information from all parties involved.

Consult2 nudges consult1 and murmurs into his ear “abe, none of these politico mammals have done an MBA. Speak to the point”

After a short break of 3 hours the meeting resumes. Meanwhile our consultants have studied the “various damages happened during 2003 winter session of parliament” report.

Consult2: Lets start with the mikes. How many mikes were damaged this year?
Speaker: 345.
Consult2: Ok. Can we assume that this number is to be distributed among the various states in an equal fashion i.e. 345/35.
Dept. Speaker: No you cant. People from states like mizoram and manipur hardly speak in the sessions. Instead distribute the losses among the states in the ratio of members from state.

Consult1: what about the chairs?
Speaker: 600
Consult1: I can see that we have only 552 members in the house. How can they damage 600 chairs???
Speaker: after day one we have replace 120 chairs and then we had further damages of 180, 100, 100, 100 on each day.
Consult1: so we can allocate the chair damages same way as we did for mikes?
Dept. Speaker: No you cant. You need to consider the attendance levels on each day and then divide this number in the ratio of state wise representations from the innermost 6 circles of the well.
Consult2: why not the backbenchers?
Dept. Speaker: they never damage anything. There is a strong hierarchy in the system. You can only throw chappals from backbench and not chairs.
Consult1: ok.

Consult2: how about loss happened to the podium?
Speaker: yeah. the podium got destroyed once.
Consult1: lets allocate this to the first 6 circles only, assuming the backbenchers cannot reach the podium.
Dept. Speaker: No you cant. (By this time saying ‘No you cant’ has become his habit) The podium is already damaged from the earlier sessions. What the esteemed members have done in this session was the mere delivering of the final blow. So you have to consider the book value of podium minus the depreciation of it in the last 7 years (for the house got the podium 8 years ago) and whatever is the reminder that you can allocate on the basis of state wise representation on the first 3 days for we operated without podium on the last 2 days.
Consult2: (vigorously scratching his head.) ok.

Consult1: What about the productive hours lost due to cancellation of sessions?
Speaker: yeah, we have lost 6 hours this year. Last year it was 7.
Consult2: Ok, so what do you suggest for allocation basis?
Dept. Speaker: (almost said ‘No you cant’, but understood that it is not required) hmm.. You can allocate the lost hours on to those members only whose houses are more than 20kms away from the house. That eliminates all the MPs from Delhi I guess.
Consult1: Ok.

Consult1: Is that all.
Speaker: Yeah.

Consult2: Now that we have seen the overheads, lets talk about productive output.
Speaker: (with a frown on his face) what is that?
Consult1: (tries to explain) I mean we are allocating the overhead damage expenses to various states. Good. But this cost should be subtracted from something that these states/members produce.
Dept. Speaker: Hmm.. But the thing is we don’t produce anything.
Consult2: (now totally confused). Then why do you need a damage allocation report?
Speaker: Because we need to compare our damages with that of our opponents damages during their tenure. This will help us in winning the next general election.

(Now its the BGC consultants turn to faint :D)



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