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Showing posts from June, 2010

Sad Demise

It saddens me to put on record that my predecessor at IMT Nagpur, Anwar Ali, is no more. Battling with a serious liver ailment for the last few months, his body gave the battle up early on 25th June. It is a rude awakening, to say the least. He was just over 60. We worked together at XIM, Bhubaneswar, early in our careers. And came together again under the IMT umbrella about six months ago, after travelling different paths.

Looking at it as a positive alarm, it should strengthen our resolve to do good for as many people/family/institutions/workplaces etc. that we want to. I am hoping that will be the case.

New Academic Year

It will be a busy time of the year starting this week. Senior batch of students is back, and juniors follow in a couple of days. A series of Programs for Executives are planned and a couple for other B-school Faculty too. The campus is throbbing with life.

Starting on a good note too, because Business world, a respected magazine, has ranked IMT Nagpur as 34th among Indian B schools. Considering there are 2500-or-so B schools in India, that's a great number to have. Collective efforts of students, faculty and admin support have made it possible, and we hope to sustain this and improve continuously.

Just got back from Mumbai after a very successful alumni meet of IMT alumni from the last few batches. Extremely interesting and enthusiastic group, and partied till late (early?). About 125 alumni turned up, upstaging the Delhi numbers at a recent do there. We hope to do this more regularly.

The rains are here, after a scorching summer. Suddenly, the road leading to the campus has turned g…

In Memoriam

A very close friend of several years passed away last week. Alok was my classmate in engineering college, and like all good friends do, taught me a lot. Right from how to fill up the GRE application and What is a Recommendation Letter (for admissions abroad), to many of life's lessons. He wore Levi's when many of us did not know of the brand's existence- ahead of times, in short. He had an amazing gift of communication, and could talk about almost anything. But his speciality was management, which he taught with great success at Georgia State, one of Atlanta's two big universities. I still remember his expression when we first drove his new Toyota Celica in the U.S. (which we photographed lovingly). He had absolutely no inferiority complex when he was with Americans (or anyone else), unlike many Indians during those years.

He was responsible for getting me a teaching assistantship in the US, persuading me to drop everything and do a Ph.D. at Clemson, where he was. While…

Dishum

When I was a kid (aeons ago, unbelievable but true), we had Hindi movies in which there was a good guy (tall, fair and handsome, even though Fair and Handsome was not yet marketed), and a bad guy who tried all kinds of tricks to defame him, snatch his jaaydaad (property) by unfair means, kidnap his lady love or his mother or kid sister, and various other nefarious tricks. For a while (maybe till the 17th reel in an 18 reel movie) the bad guy would succeed. And then, all of a sudden, the tide would turn.

Dishum, is the sound one heard, that told you the tide was turning. Not once, not twice, but countless times, you would hear the soundtrack say Dishum, and the hero would plaster the bad guy from one corner of a warehouse/villain's den to another. And we would jump in our seats. The hero had full backing from the audience, like Sachin and Sehwag have when bashing up Australian bowling. Even Bruce Lee's Enter the Dragon had its own version of the dishum.

Alas, our quest for realis…

Growing up

Reading a title called Confessions of a failed Grown-up. It's British humour by a lady who has also written a few other books, notably Confessions of a Failed Mother. It has a lot of good stuff like take-offs on ageing (sagging assets, and other usual things that happen to various body parts), parenting, husbands and how useless they usually are, fear of spiders, Saturday Night Fever (it has more cuss words than anyone can remember, and not much dancing, and yet was a big hit), and so on. What Do You Call Yours, is a chapter devoted to wondering what you tell the children to call their "willies" or "noo-noos" or whatever, and quite hilarious.

There is also some angst about British (female)clothes sizes- from 5 to 22, and the fact that they don't actually make/sell more than a few small sizes-it seems they end at around size 12. The author claims that most females are forced to diet because otherwise they couldn't buy any clothes. She suggests that they c…

Cliches

Cliches are universal. An overdose can kill. Here is a light-hearted look at a few management cliches.

Think Global-Act Local

What exactly this means is anybody's guess. Are you supposed to think Shanghai and act Mumbai? Or think like an Afghan and act like a Kolkatan? Ok, if this is for a business, then think like NBC and act like Jaya TV, maybe. Or think like McDonald's and act like your idli-dosa joint. Whatever one may make of it, it does sound impressive. Maan gaye ustaad, whoever thought of this one.

Think Out of the Box

Our typical man on the street, if he hears this, will immediately start looking for THE BOX. Where is the box? Or, to take it a step further, he may get worried that he has to THINK. How can management ask us to think? It is another devious trick to torture us, and profit from a common man's sweat....etc., etc. Box or no box, thinking is anathema to most people. Why think, when we have survived for so long without it?

Leverage Your Strengths

Ever since Hin…

Welcome Clouds

What a relief to have clouds, some of them dark, stationed in the Nagpur sky! After about 2 and a half months of steady highs going up to 47 and something degrees, the pleasant sight makes one really happy. Like the old ad line...Happy Days are Here Again. Not that the summer is a total wasteland. It brings us the much needed summer vacations (those that have them), the sweetest mangoes (missed those in the US), and sundry other pleasures. This summer, it was mostly above normal here, increasing suspicions of global-local warming.

Reading a biography of Guru Dutt by Nasreen Munni Kabir. Some insights are that he was unsure of himself as an actor. He also dithered a lot over some shots, doing many retakes, or no takes. Also, he felt that songs impeded the flow of the narrative in a film. Yet, he was known for great song picturisations, even on smaller characters like Johny Walker, apart from heroines and himself. Almost every movie of his has a couple of classic songs still hummed and …