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

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Some more—

Some more (in-fact many more) PPTs happened since the last post. There are some companies which look rather small and niche, but have some amazing roles to offer. Some others surprise everyone by the compensation they have to offer. (on both sides :) )

It is interesting to see how different people apply to different companies based on different criteria. For some, location is important. For some it is the role and for others the compensation. Then there are many who have no focus. They just apply to whatever job they feel like. Peer pressure is also playing its part. The entire consulting crowd already has shortlists from the biggies. Some others who applied for international roles have also managed to get shortlists in their bag. People who are applying to domestic “non-consulting” companies are yet to get their shortlists and are feeling deprived. It is only a matter of time before they get their shortlists in place. However, to see your friend/ quaddie with 4 shortlists and you with none has certain psychological implications and sometimes it shows. Come placement week, this is going to be more of a norm than an exception.

I have come to realize that it is as important for a candidate to understand his/ her fit with the company as is the other way around. There are certain PPTs where you know from the first minute into the PPT that this is not the place for you! Then there are others where you never thought you would want to apply, but the PPT and interaction with people make you change your mind. With wide choice available to both the parties in this game, this issue becomes very important while making a decision.

There are only about two weeks left for placements to start. There is a lot to be done and also the international placement process to be taken care of. Mad times ahead.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007


Some companies which have already had their PPTs (only indicative)

Tishman Speyer, Satyam, ICICI sec, Essar, CISCO, Ambit, Tesco, Infosys, Pfizer, E&Y, HLL, Microsoft, PWC, DSP ML, IBM, Genpact, Citibank, Cognizant, ebay, ZS associates, Tata motors, Kotak group, Hewitt, TCS, Wipro, Coca Cola, Accenture, Stern & Stewart---

Some companies which have their PPTs scheduled in next two weeks

Morgan Stanley, Honeywell, Fair Isaac, Sun group, Amazon, ITC, Diamond, TVS, Hutch, Godrej, Virtusa, IDFC, Jindal steel----

Placement fever is really catching up. Not all companies do a PPT. There are many domestic and international companies which are not doing a PPT but have put up a job posting. As day zero approaches, many more postings are expected to flow in.

On the personal front: Got a surprise shortlist!

Friday, January 19, 2007

Placement updates, PPTs et al

As the placement season is reaching its peak, there are lots of interesting developments happening. There are at-least 3-4 PPTs happening everyday. Each company’s representatives are trying their best to convince us that if we don’t apply/ intend to work with them, we will be loosing out on a big opportunity and our lives will be complete waste! Some PPTs are really good while some are so bad that they make you wonder as to why you decided to waste 1 precious hour of your life attending the PPT!! It’s a good reminder of the importance of presentation skills we learnt in the LDP sessions---I can see how easy it is to put the audience to sleep (or even piss them off in come cases) if you are a BAD presenter--

Some shortlists for interviews are out. McDonald and co (name changed to preserve confidentiality--not to be confused with the fast food chain ---i cant think of a different proxy name as of now ), which is considered to be the most prestigious recruiter in the world of consulting, and who was traditionally known to only shortlist ppl with exceptional grades has given a shock to everyone through their shortlist. The shortlist consists of many ppl with exceptional profiles but not so good CGPAs. Infact, only half of the dean’s listers find their names in the list. This is in sharp contrast to the other consulting biggie which has about 85% dean’s listers. I felt bad for dean’s listers who did not get shortlisted for McDonalds as they have been working like mad from term one onwards to get good grades just for this shortlist--- This is not fair ( but so is life ;) )

The good news this year seems to be the fact that many more companies are on campus compared to last year. Given the assumption that all of them would recruit, there are chances of a substantial increase in number of offers this year. Goes well with the fact that we are a bigger batch as well. Some international I-banks who were not visiting till last year have also decided to show up and this is a big boost for finance aspirants. Further, some new consulting firms are also likely to show up.

Monday, January 15, 2007

The saga of SPAM

It is really amazing to see the creativity of ISBians when it comes to spamming. We can find at-least a billion reasons to spam everyone under the sun. The latest spam subject is PPT swaps.

It so happens that the placement committee has come up with this rule where in six core study groups, one from each core section are assigned one PPT each so that there is equitable distribution of people across PPTs. Now howz that a problem? Its like this---X is interested in finance but she has been assigned an IT company, Y who is a born IT geek has been assigned an I bank---So if X & Y can swap their PPTs both get to attend whatever they want to !! Makes sense in efficient market situation, but the problem is how does X find Y?? Answer is simple—X spams students 07 ---bombards everyone’s mailboxes & there is a 100% chance that Y is one of the 415 odd students on campus—and then they find each other and live happily thereafter----

But wait—the story doesn’t end here---now since X has got her perfect match, she has to send another spam saying thanks to everyone and to share the good news that she found her match! So the result is yet another spam----and now everyone else is also out on a mission to find their respective matches and that only means spam spam spam and more spam---

Some other commonly used spam subjects at ISB are:

-Lost Umbrella Black in color and round in shape (How insightful!!) If found please contact 99XXXXXXX

-Lost course pack in AC X , if found pls pls let me know!!! (As if you are going to actually read it!)

-Barber on campus !

-Lost wallet/watch/ mobile last nite at SV X in a party---If found please contact---
( Main peeke tunn tha--- kisi ne chura liya)

-Please let me know the submission deadline for XX assignment !! ( Was sleeping in class and never access blackboard)

And more---

All in all ISB is a heaven for habitual spammers. Tons to spam about!

PS: Fellow spam victims, pls feel free to add in more topics if i am missing out on something

Sunday, January 14, 2007

The flagship event of Real estate club

The Real estate club is the youngest club at ISB. It was formed by us, the class of 2007. Working with very small alumni base, no background work done and very few people actively taking part in the club activities, I feel we did very well to conduct our flagship event. The details of the event can be found by clicking here.

The Real estate club at ISB is perhaps the only one of its kind in India. I don’t think any other B-School in India has a club dedicated to the Real estate sector. We have covered a lot of ground during the year and it was really hard due to lack of any precedents for the club. There are still only a few alums who are working in this sector. It was important for us to project the image of ISB as a student body with strong interest and experience in the sector to be able to tap on the opportunities in the sector in coming years.

The event was attended by almost the entire who’s who of the sector and various topics of research interest were discussed. Lack of land regulations, lack of good quality primary data for financial modeling and valuation, outdated regulations and the sector still being largely unorganized were a few of the issues brought out. The discussions gave some good pointers for the possible areas of research at the Real estate research lab at ISB.

All in all the success of this event was in some sense very satisfying for us, the founder members of this club, as running this club has been like running a startup business. I hope that in the coming years this startup will really scale up and the next batches would show the same level of enthu to take this club forward.

Thursday, January 11, 2007


The first so called hotshot consulting shortlist came out yesterday. With this, the domestic placement season has officially begun. The shortlist is no surprise at all. Most of the dean’s listers find their names in the list. Some other candidates who are not toppers, but have diverse and very interesting profiles have also been shortlisted. The firm is taking the shortlisted ppl out on dinner tomorrow where they will make a pre placement pitch (As if they need to !!).

The other consulting biggie is expected to announce its shortlist next week. Empirical evidence suggests that it would be more or less a photocopy of this list except a few names here and there.

Meanwhile a lot of companies are pouring in for PPTs. There are so many PPTs and job postings happening that it is becoming difficult to keep track. Some of the roles on offer are also very interesting. Term 7 is expected to be fully devoted to placement activities. Going by the number of companies coming to campus for PPTsand the number of companies registered for placements so far, the situation looks good.

The excitement is building up.

BTW, the name of the firm is confidential and therefore I have not mentioned it ;)

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Negotiation Analysis

Negotiation Analysis taught by Prof. Dishan Kamdar is yet another hot course at ISB. The course is structured around learning effective negotiation skills which are of paramount importance for a manager.

There could be two possible ways for a Prof to structure such a course. First way is to put a lot of faff, psychology and all that (negotiation is all about understanding psychology) pages and pages of pre and post reads, complicated HBS cases which only 10% of the class understands and bore to death the students who are already reaching a burnout by term 7. The other way is how Professor Dishan is doing it. We have one negotiation exercise every class, our own behavior is not that difficult to observe for us! And then he simply reinforces the theory associated with the exercise with minimal usage of jargons. So most of our time is spent on actually negotiating rather that reading and listening about negotiation!

Yet another awesome course.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Start of Term 7: Placement fever and random anxieties

Term 7 starts on Monday. Many people have no term break this time since their exams end only today and the new term starts on Monday!! Nowhere in the world would you find a term starting the next working day after an exam and nowhere in the world would you find an exam happening on Jan 1st!!! (Yes, we had an exam on Jan 1st!) But then nowhere in the world would you find an ISB!

The barrage of exams and classes is just a consequence of the 1 year format. If you need to complete the coursework of two years in one, this is bound to happen. Yesterday one exchange student asked me how much of this can you guys retain. Well, people have different opinions but I surely retain a few things I like and then how much more do you retain in a two year MBA? 5 years down the line, its your experience, pre and post MBA that is all you have---You might only vaguely remember the porter’s model or the M&M theory, especially if you work in an unrelated field! But the ISB social network and the school stays on your resume forever!!

Coming back to exams, most subjects in term 7 don’t have an in class exam. With an all time low interest in acads, the highlight of this term is going to be placement preps. January is full of recruiter PPTs. We have about three PPTs lined up every day in January. Many recruiters have been coming to ISB over a past few years and some others are new names.

It is also interesting to see that as placement time comes closer, people are slowly bordering insanity. Part of it is driven by peer pressure, part of it by unrealistic expectation and most of it by pessimism. People are generally worried about what others are doing, who is getting what shortlist and all that, even if they themselves are doing pretty ok! How can my quaddie/ group mate do better? That’s the key question that seems to be bothering everyone! But I guess all this is a part of the fun package. As placements come closer, a lot of such stories would be heard. Some are pure fun and some not so much---

Its fun time as usual---

Monday, January 01, 2007

Section A: Memories revisited

Sanket and Kil Kil productions have come up with this amazing video caputring all the fun moments of Section A, class of 2007. Absolutely fantastic piece of work

Kamma: The God of M&A theory

I usually don’t write much about ISB Profs as in my opinion writing about one is probably unfair to the other, since most of them are absolutely world class. However, Prof Kamma certainly needs a mention in my blog before term 6 gets over officially.

He taught us the course on Corporate Control, Mergers and Acquisitions (CCMA in short). This was the hottest course in the electives by far and I had to spend about 1000 of my 4000 points available for 16 subjects only on this one class. But hell, it was totally worth it.

His case analyses were absolutely amazing and there were many “Aha” moments in each class. Also, the material he has distributed is really fantastic. Anyone even remotely interested in mergers and acquisitions either from a Finance perspective or from a strategy perspective, must take this course. Rarely, do you get such a fantastic teacher—

Loved this class.