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 :-)

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Problem of the Plenty

PPTs(Pre Placement Talks) are going on in full swing. more than 150 companies have registered for placements and the number is set to increase. Companies are offering a plethora of roles in different locations and the number of international companies on the campus have also increased manifold. All this is good you say? Well on the face of it, its very good. But it has lead to one serious problem: Confusion. where do you wanna go? what do you wanna do? unless you are totally focussed its very difficult to come out of this mess.

Its considered a bad sign not to be focussed on your career goals. You are supposed to have a clear cut view of what you want to do by this stage. Some HR gyan gurus and also alums and other speakers who came on campus to distribute the gyaan underline the above statement. But nobody sees the main unerlying problem. The role that we want to be in the responsibilities that we wanna take are all based on our past experiences and judgement and all that we have seen and known. But there is a vast black box of the unknown which we know nothing about. We have only heard about it, learnt about it and have imagined what it can be. But we havent lived it, havent felt what exactly it is. Every job has its pros and cons and there is no such thing as a dream job.
All this blabber is very important at this stage precisely because of the vast choice available. If I believe something to be good and choose it and later on find it was something I never wanted, then the feeling of choosing the wrong thing will be very overwhelming. It is not that there will be no way to turn back at that point n time. The ISB brand name will take care of that. But the fact that you chose the wrong thing will be very intimidating. Every choice does not stand by itself. Its a tradeoff. You are giving up something to take up something. And that precisely is the problem.
But fortunately there is a way around this problem. Focus on the holistic. Forget the roles: Asst vice presidents, Business development, consultant, account manager. Imagine a day in your life, what will make every moment every hour well lived. Is there a remote chance of living that kind of life with the role that you have chosen. If the answer is Yes, go for it. Again as i said, its not necessary that it will turn out as you imagined. But there is so much you can do. If it doesnt turn out well, either adapt or leave.
I know most of the above doesnt make sense, or does it? :-)

Friday, January 05, 2007

"the anatomy of compromise"*

Well term 6 is over. We are now 3/4th MBA. Just 2 more to go. And in the middle, there will be the placements. Junta is taking lesser courses next term to focus on placements. I am also thinking of doing the same. Last term was very eventful both in the classroom and outside. First of all there were innumerable assignments which really kept us busy. Then we had the party at our Aikya family's house (who is incidentally an ISB alum). No need to mention about the alum gathering - solstice. All of you must be familiar with it. Then we went carol singing a day before Christmas eve and it was a huge hit with the kids, the profs and the junta and spouses. yours truly went around distributing sweets and presents as the grand old man clad in red robes (minus the reindeers). Then there were innumerable number of PPTs and talks. Finally the new year intermingles with exams. Top it all up with a trip to Ramoji yesterday and that's term 7 for you.

You are wondering what all the above has to do with the title of the post. Well you are right, nothing! The link starts now. It is the title of a chapter from Ayn Rand's book "capitalism". Just got to lay my hands on a torn an tattered copy which I had kept for years. I knew it was a great timeless classic, also read and appreciated some of the chapters (though not all of it) and so never wanted to part with it inspite of its precarious condition. Today it just happened to grab my attention and while turning the pages I couldnt help wondering at the intellectual content this great lady possessed and how well she understood. Most of the principles and thoughts which are so fervently thought in today's BSchools as something which is time tested and developed recently, already find place in this great book of an outstanding visionary. I would like to quote here 3 basic rules (without context) from the chapter "The anatomy of compromise"

1. In any conflict between two groups (of people) who hold the same basic principles, it is the more consistent who wins.
2. In any collaboration between two groups who hold different basic principles, it is the more evil or irrational one who wins.
3. When opposite basic principles are clearly and openly defined, it works to the advantage of the rational side; when they are not clearly defined, but are hidden or evaded, it works to the advantage of the irrational side.

If you dont understand the above. Gotta read the book. Meanwhile am off to face the new term.