I, Me, Myself and ISB!!

This blog is about me and my life at ISB--Hence the name I,Me, Myself. Its just a chronicle of events as they unfold during my tenure here. No knowledge sharing, no talk about finance, public policy, economy or industry trends..(However that does'nt mean i dont know about all this stuff:))--This is a "gyan free" blog.Enjoy reading

Sunday, August 27, 2006

The ISB Ganpati

Even amidst the Term 3 exam fever, ISBians were not far behind in celebrating Ganpati. The pooja in SV1 was performed by Abhijit Vaidya, a student!

For interested devotees, this particular Ganpati is located in SV 1 K block.

Ganpati bappa moriya

Friday, August 25, 2006

Aftermath of the Massacre

Last week was kind of bad for most people. Some one million grades were released one after another and I don’t even remember what came out when. All I know is that they all came and will stay on!

What intrigues me is that there is absolute lack of standardization among Profs when it comes to grading. Certain Profs are lenient with the higher grades while some are lenient with lower bands. Then there are some who are far from lenient with either band. The effect of this is that if one screws up even a little bit in the subject with strict grading, you get a lower than expected grade. On the other hand, someone screwing up big time in a subject with lenient grading will still manage to get an average grading. I feel that this is somewhat unfair and has become a game of chance.

There is a certain set of unfortunate students who always end up on the wrong side. After looking at last week’s grades I felt that this calls for some kind of standardization among subjects.

Another factor mentioned in a lot of previous year’s blogs was the CP. Frankly till now I believed that CP marks are no big deal. But now I can see that most of the CPs are being marked arbitrarily. Many people talk utter rubbish in class just to score CP points. These are graded by TAs who I guess score on the basis of the number of times a person opens his/ her mouth even if they talk about Karan Joha’r latest movies or some other crap like that. This is forming a major chunk of the grade in many subjects including upto 40% in one of the term 3 subjects. I wonder what would happen on this count.

All said and done, this place refuses to stop springing surprises! This is the down part of the rollercoaster ride for many. I am waiting for the up part when I would see some sky.

Friday, August 18, 2006

BCG and Naukri

Attended a couple of very interesting sessions yesterday. First one was by Sanjeev Bhikchandani the CEO of Naukri .com. Yet another superb speaker i had the good fortune of listening to at ISB. The series was a a part of the PAEV course i have registered for. He was very authentic. No jargons thrown--simple story telling including all the errors he made.

All these entrepreneurs i hear at ISB are so inspiring that sometimes i feel i should just not sit for placements and become an entrepreneur! For sure i have this desire somewhere deep inside to be an entrepreneur but for some reason or the other, its been strangled and not allowed to come out. A couple of weeks earlier, Mansih Sabbhawal of teamlease had evoked similar thoughts. I am yet not sure if its the desire in me or the sheer inspiration provided by these speakers that prompt me to go the entrepreneurial way!-- For starters i have decided to do the PAEV course as a practice to incubating a business idea. However i strongly feel that i wont consider myself to have had a successful career, if i cant do something of my own! Dont know where it will lead to but yeah the first step is the desire and its very much there.

Second event was a consulting gyan session by BCG. Three ISB alums and two Principals from BCG had flown down just for the session. The firm culture looks extremely informal and work you choose to do depends on your individual interests. However it was more or less clear that they would look majorly into grades for shortlists and i know that i have little hope here.

I feel consulting is an ideal career for a bschool grad since its the only place you would apply your bschool learnings to the fullest. Its the same like working for a CA firm in traditional practice after CA. Thats where you apply what you ve learnt. Consulting is far more glamorous though.
So coming back to BCG, there were a whole bunch of people ( read Consulting wanna bees) hanging around even after the session was over. Like I have said Consulting as a career is highly overrated at ISB and so every Tom Dick and Harry wants to get into it. Hence firms like BCG visiting the campus would always get overwhelming response. BCG also did a good job of the session and people were satisfied overall.

Term end exams approach next week. Three terms would be over. This MBA at ISB is getting over at a pace much faster than i thought. Assignments, exams, meetings, unlimited work etc have stopped bothering me. I feel i can do any amount of work in a given day. Only thing is--exam results dont come out as well as i want to. Not that i score badly--others score better--- However now that has also stopped bothering me. Reflecting back i ve learnt a lot in last 4 months and looking forward to learning a lot more in the remaining program.

And some where deep inside-Dont want this to end--

PS: My ELP team consisting of Consultant, Herbie, Mr Serious, Madam and me have managed to get a hot project. 8 teams applied, 4 were short listed and two selected. Feeling good about it. Hope we do a good job.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

From the Horse’s mouth

They say that there is no better way than to hear it from the horse’s mouth. Vijay Mulbagal from class of 2006 was here to dissipate some first hand “gyan” about Diamond, the strategy firm he works for and his experiences so far.

The interaction was more of a reality check and he addressed a lot of critical issues of importance to consulting wanna bees. I really liked the way he put across a couple of thoughts—important ones being that not everyone is cut out for consulting and there is a huge world outside consulting.

I personally feel that Management Consulting as a career is highly overrated at ISB. This is partly because of the phenomenal number of “Consulting types” produced by the previous batches and partly because of the outstanding work done by the current and previous year's Consulting Club.

Vijay did a good job of explaining the hardships related to consulting and the frequent travel associated with the job. It reminded of just about the same time last year when I was in the US handling a couple of assignments and shuttling between Chicago and San Francisco umpteen number of times---looks glamorous but its really really tough.

He also went over the pros and cons associated with working for a small firm. This was again something I could relate to well. Although, the unstructured informal atmosphere used to bug me a bit in my previous job, I found a lot of comfort and flexibility in working for a smaller firm. I don’t think you can get that in the McKinsey’s of the world—but you make a trade off between this and the glamour that comes with working for a top shot---

Vijay also mentioned that grades and only grades are not very important. It’s the overall package that matters---

The one very good thing about ISB is that all the alums are extremely helpful and co-operative. They take time out of personal visits to be with us and go out of their way to help us. I hope we can continue to do the same when we are alums—This is the one of the important ways alums can add value to the ISB experience.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

This Club and that one—

In term 3 a lot of clubbing activities are going on at ISB. Read the dialogue below to get a feel.

An alien from Mars is visiting ISB over the weekend and there is this volunteer ISBian whoz showing him around.

After an extensive walk they are chilling out at the atrium when ISBian starts frantically looking at his watch and feeling uncomfortable. Alien realizes this.

A: What’s the matter? U have some work?

I: I have a club meeting.

A: Club wow that sounds fun.

I: No this is a professional club. Its Consulting club not some junkie club

A: A club for consulting—wow

I: Yeah it’s a big thing at ISB

A: kool. What all Clubs do you have?

I: We have Finance, Real estate, Marketing, Entrepreneurship, Energy and Operations, Health care, General management and many others. You can form a club for any professional area as long as you have 20 ppl interested.

A: That’s some new definition of clubs. Do you only have these boring clubs what about fun clubs?

I: We do have a lot of fun clubs as well. Music, arts and creativity, Quiz, Sports etc

A: wow ISB looks like some good clubbing place

A: So what do these professional clubs do?

I: They focus on their area of concentration. They take care of industry and alumni interaction, organize speaker series, conduct workshops and work on building relationships with Industry.

A: Oh so do they get you jobs in your area of interest?

I: No one can get you a job unless you deserve it. But being a part of a club does help build up some knowledge in your area of interest.

A: hmmm. So how many clubs are you a part of?

I: he he well I am part of some 16 clubs

A: oh that many???

I: well honestly I don’t attend most club events. Its just that I became a member. Ideally you should choose one or two of your choice

A: If I come to ISB I would make a club of all clubs---All the people who are not part of any club will join my club.

I: Well you wont find many members –

A: anyways you carry on for your club meet.

I leaves and the dialogue ends.

“Clubs clubs everywhere
Lot of knowledge they have to share
One club here and one club there
Some work hard and some don’t care
With my calendar full of club fare
I don’t know to go where?”

Ok now all must ve realized my poetry sucks---- but nevertheless----

Till next time

Friday, August 04, 2006

SIMC 2006

A summit on global manufacturing cmpetitiveness is going on at the ISB these days. Its being co-hosted by center Global Logistics and manufacturing strategies at ISB , Deloitte Research, The Global Business Institute of the Stern School of Business at New York University, the National Science Foundation, and the Krannert School of Management at Purdue University.

More details can be found at http://www.isb.edu/simc2006/htmls/index.html