Positive People

These, by my definition, are people who spread a positive vibe, most of the time. It has little to do with their condition at the time, or their financial status, or age etc..may be, kids are a great example, because most of them will give you positive vibes.

Not so adults. Why? Maybe we are obsessed with our work or home pressures, career progression, or an unsatisfying job (assuming we work for someone). But then, you see lots of people who are generally able to smile through anything, and even laugh at themselves and life.

No idea how they do it, but these kinds of people are a joy to behold and be with. In films too, my favourites were the happy-go-lucky people (yes, I know they were acting) who exhibited a devil-may-care attitude, or a mischievous demeanour, in a nice way. Dev Anand comes to mind (his autobiography is titled Romancing with Life), and so do Shammi Kapoor and Kishore Kumar. And Madhubala in many of her roles.

Book Review- The Curious Marketer

This is a book by Harish Bhat, who has marketed many products in India. His experiences and observations are what it is about. A long time ago, I had read a similar book by Gurcharan Das which was based on his experiences with Vicks.

Very engagingly written, with each chapter only a few pages long, it is a very good read. Most of all, I liked the thoughts about new products that could be launched, based on observing trends- weight loss, for instance. I know Rujuta Diwekar has sold a few million copies of her book on the subject, and gyms have generally offered slimming packages  and raked it in.

He has a nice style which draws on his own experiences of marketing and advertising (and consuming) in India, and sometimes his experiences abroad -like wine-tasting in Austria. Many nuggets can be thought-provoking, if today's marketers are still in the habit of reading anything at all. The use of music, using babies in ads, and the trend of corporate 'suits' wearing colourful so…

Eating Places

I think for me, the top of the pops are the Irani chai joints, because of memories associated with them, from engineering college days. They were usually non-descript places with names like Hilton, Ramser, Lighthouse; small and just tolerably clean, with a crowd of people of every description. But they all had a warmth which the best of restaurants find difficulty in giving you. The food selection wasn't great- an Osmania biscuit, a bun-omelette, or a mirchi bajji- a delicacy for gourmet eaters fond of fiery stuff. But we spent hours at some of these joints, sometimes discussing dreams of going to the U.S., but mostly the last Bollywood movie or something more down to earth. The waiter-boy's cries of "do chai la" still rings in my ears, after decades.

The coffee cafes probably serve the same function today, but wifi has intruded to make them more tech-oriented, and maybe conversation-less in some cases. They are definitely posher, cleaner, and still limited in eats …

Great Actors

Out of the ones I have seen on screen, I would classify these among my greats-

Kishore Kumar, Mehmood, Amitabh Bachchan, Irrfan Khan, Naseeruddin Shah, Prithviraj Kapoor, Om Puri, Smita Patil, Madhubala, Rekha, Kajol, Guru Dutt, Waheeda Rehman, Dev Anand.

There are of course many others who were good, but had some flaws- Raj Kapoor imitated Charlie Chaplin a bit more than necessary, though he played the simpleton pretty well.  Rajesh Khanna was very good in some roles, but could not pull off some others, and became a stylised version of himself in his later films. Anand, though, remains one of my favourite (best?) films, and it starred him.

Smita Patil brought an element of mystique to many roles she played. Shabana was also good in some of her roles, many offbeat. Rekha also played some woman-centric roles like in Khoobsurat with great confidence. Her transformation from a raw, dark Southie to the mainstream was remarkable. Kajol is one of the most natural actresses ever, and I wish…

Relaunching the Seminar on Thought Leadership

There was this course that I ran in IMT Nagpur a few years ago. We had around 40 students in it, and I had generated a list of thought leaders (authors, playwrights, inventors, explorers) or ideas that have impacted the world or society in a big way. The students in groups had to research the topic given and tell the class through a presentation how the given person or idea changed the world. There would be  a critique of the presentation from me and a couple of students from the audience, and a Q and A.

I still remember the course vividly, and hope that students do too. I am collaborating with my colleague Shweta Kushal at IIM Indore to relaunch the course here for our 5-year integrated program students. We both hope that we will learn a lot about history, inventions, art, etc. that changed society and our lives, along with our students. Two of my former students, Padmapriya and Jogeswari had also come in to guest lecture in the earlier edition of the course, and added diverse persp…

Renaming Our Educational Programs

Indian Institutes of Management in India used to have one flagship MBA program-except that it was called the PGDM, or Post Graduate Program in Management, and was a Diploma. Now, the new IIM Bill converts that potentially into a degree, along with other programs of the institute.

IIM Indore has a few other programs like the 5 year Integrated Program in Management and a Weekend PG Program for Working Execs. in Mumbai.

These will also get a new name in line with the change in the name of our flagship program.

What's in a name? A lot, actually. The Ph.D. is currently known as the Fellow Program , and will get a more easily recognisable name-the Ph.D- very soon. Makes the graduate more marketable, other things remaining constant. Same is the case with the 5 year Integrated Program in Management which may become MBA (Integrated).

A welcome change for many students.

I Do What I Do

This is obvious, you may say. But Raghuram Rajan found it interesting enough to use as a book title. So there must be something in it. So I got thinking (always a dangerous thing for my blog readers)- and..voila, I listed out things that I do.

I do laundry (after all, this is a laundry list)

I eat, and don't cook- that way I get to criticise other people's cooking, rather than they criticising mine.

I travel, and expand my mind. Not sure if an infinite expansion is good for it or not..

I draw..conclusions from what I read and observe..otherwise I can't draw even to save my life.

I pontificate, but only to those who will listen-students don't have much of a choice...

I use tech tools according to my proclivities and convenience, otherwise shutting them up for good if I feel like it. You may not think so, but..

I blog because there's no editor telling me what to write and what not to..hope YOU won't, after this..