One Year stand with ISB

This Blog aims to capture my affair with ISB and beyond.

Location: Hyderabad, India

I promise not to make this a chronicle of events unfolding in ISB or the world in general. These posts will generally qualify those events with my thoughts. At the same time I promise it will be enjoyable :-)

Saturday, April 29, 2006


Cooking is a great stress relieving activity and a welcome and different change from starring at the laptop screen for endless hours (and u 2 bloggie). Cutting onions and tomatoes, beating eggs, whipping the cream and frying and cooking things takes you to an altogether different world. You must be thinking that I become sadistic in the kitchen, but thats what cooking is all about. It relieves you from the million concepts flirting with your mind and gives you a chance to do something different. I generally like to multitask while cooking and prepare 3 to 4 dishes at a time. Optimum utilisation of resources and time u c. Also having a prior experience of 3 years in yankee land and the land of Oz helps. My roomies used to swear by my cooking and I have rescued many of them from malnutrition and hunger.

But there is one thing that I hate about cooking (and ofcourse eating): Washing dishes. Why dont I employ a Bai (maid) you say? Well that is because this is just the preliminary stage and will be doing so as soon as Kandy comes on board. Also, I didnt have the luxury of hiring one in yankeeland or in the land of OZ where I developed these skills (it was a matter of survival then!!!). But something that started as a question of survival eventually metamorphised into a liking and then a hobby. But the scarcity of maids did teach me a lesson: clean up immediately after you cook. Atleast to an extent that it becomes easier later. And I have incorporated that lesson big time. So you wont find my kitchen cluttered with vegetable waste or dirty utensils.

Also I never cook at home. Mom is the queen of kitchen and she is very particular about cleanliness (hope she is not reading this). I tried to delight and surprise her once by making poha in the morning. Everything was perfect but just at the last moment, a small portion of cooked poha fell on the other side of the gas stove. I hurried to clean it up before mom could see and got burnt on the forearm in the bargain. But still I managed to clean it before mom could see and all was well. Cuts and burns and wastes and dirty dishes, just become a part of life in the kitchen. But they are a welcome change from the huge back breaking Term 1 books and handouts. Also the most important thing is it fills your stomach!!

Parting Joke (My original)
The flame was flirting with the vegetable in the vessel. What did the vegetable say to the flame???

'Cook me Tender!'

So long...

Friday, April 28, 2006

Start of core terms

Life on the campus is getting geared up for the storm which is scheduled to hit the campus next monday. A formal mail from the asst dean making a thorough health check was a very sweet gesture. It served as a sugary portion before the bitter medicine which we will have to take in the coming terms. Study groups can be seen huddled up trying to make sense of the initial reading in marketing and economics in the atium. I am sure a larger number must be meeting up in the villages. Our group also had a few meetings but there were no tangible outcomes as such. We decided to discuss only the kitaabi gyan and postpone the case solving till we get a general direction from the gurujis.

The Accounting pre term lecturer really opened up a whole new financial world to most of us (75% being techies with no formal accounting or financial background). She displayed enormous amounts of patience with the silly questions (and some smart ones) doled out to her. It was really nice to see the twinkle in her eyes which had the 'I know what you dont know' look whenever a question was asked. Too bad we wont be seeing her next week onwards but the concepts shared by her will be always with us.

Need to catch up on a lot of reading. So c ya Bloggie sometime later...

Monday, April 24, 2006

The Level 5 Leader

One who fits the Level 5 Bill,
Is a person with humility and fierce will,
He can take a company from Good to Great,
and his Subs, can motivate,
And make sure there is no peril...

The team which researched the subject 'what takes companies from good to great' claims to have stumbled upon the concept and the characteristics of Level 5 Leadership by accident. That is really great. I like such research which doesnt start with pre conceived notions and go on to find something unusual something really different. The two main characteristics of Level 5 leaders (Leaders who take a company from good to great AND make sure that it stays there) ie humility and fierce will does seem like a surprise at first glance. It also seems ironic that these two traits can be present in the same individual. Having these two traits requires a greater degree of emotional intelligence. Again it also depends on what is the motive. If a leader's main aim is self exaltation and media attention as opposed to a genuine interest in his/her organisation's long term growth and sustenance, then he will of course stick to a level 4. But what is the greater good. By any means isnt it the latter? Because by focussing on the latter you are building something larger than life not only for yourself but also for others. Self exaltation and media attention initiated by yourself is shortlived. But the same achieved thru actions and letting others appreciate it of their own without prompting is something which is very fulfilling and long lasting.

So much for level 5 leadership. Now lets move on to something lighter. The preterms started today with a bang but ended in a whimper. It was the official start of academics. The email chaos has turned into a riot. But these are the initial teething problems and as all things, this too shall pass !!!!

Club enrollments are still going on and people are trying to add some turbulence to the 'silence before the storm' which is going to hit next monday. I can hear it from far away and the lethargy of opening the books has still not gone away. I think I will wake up once the storm hits. :-)

Saturday, April 22, 2006

"ISB Rocks"

That was the chant which resonated more than any of the section chants when the fun and games filled Orientation Week came to an end on Friday with the talent nite. Our section managed to get a third place in the talent nite and some bonus points for the mesmerizing chant. Hats Off and thanks to the alums who stayed back from last year to give us a wonderful and smooth transition into the rigorous academic life @ ISB.

Now starts the actual grind of the program as we start off with the preterms comprising of 3 core subjects. My mind is still trying to cope with the fact that I took this decision - of going back to academic life when I was fully set in my career. But thats what defines me. Putting myself in chaos when life is smooth sailing. There wouldnt be any order if there were no chaos. And what is life but an unending cycle of order and chaos. If life has to stay in any one of the two stages then its boring and unlife. That again brings me back to the eternal unanswered question: What would life be when ones attains nirvana, salvation or eternal life? How boring that would be. Well I ll treat this question in depth in my forthcoming posts :-D.

Coming back to chaos they are just starting to take shape. My ISB mail box is inundated with millions of mails trying to get me enrolled in one or the other clubs or informing me of other trivia going on in campus. Some are replies to mails sent earlier which ideally shouldnt have ended up in my mail box. Sometimes people are so naive that they dont understand and respect other people's time. I spent a better part of 2 hours trying to separate the wheat from the chaff. Though its heartening to note the enthu of the crowd in campus, it would be better if fellow mates start exercising caution and discretion before clicking that 'send' button. Email is a wonderful instrument of communication but is more often abused than used. Hopefully I guess the number of mails will go down once the focus shifts to academics. Now the ship is sailing in the shallow waters without a captain and without objectives. Once those get defined we should be set for the real chaos of the high seas.

As of now I cannot help thinking about George Michael's words in 'Careless Whispers'

I feel so unsure, as I take your hand and lead you to the dance floor.

Hope to dance a smooth and synchronous ballet in the next 1 year. May the powers that Be, be with Me (and all fellow mates).