Change your actions, you will transform your life – Mukul, an IIMB convert, CLite

Hi Sreeni Sir, hope you are doing well!

Sir, since I am doing this for the first time, please ignore anything silly! I hope that I am able to convey my thoughts and my journey within the limited spectrum of words that are out there because sometimes words are not enough to express all the emotions and experiences we experience in our life and also that it inspires other aspirants to take action to achieve what they want in life!! Here it goes,

Somewhere back in May 2018, about one year ago, I read this somewhere, “We don’t even know how strong we are until we are forced to bring that hidden strength forward. In times of necessity, people do amazing things. The human capacity for survival and renewal is awesome”

My journey, from preparing for CAT till the interview process, is a tale of self-realization and the importance of necessity in one’s lives.

It’s been a funny year for me! I was a sad and demotivated software engineer working for an unorganized IT company where politics had more role to play than software development itself. Meanwhile, a very close friend was preparing for CAT. I remember, very clearly, I was on a midnight con call with my ‘bros’, one of them was the CAT guy, the other one was GRE guy and then there was me, unsure about my own capabilities and sad with my professional life, when they said that it’s not necessary to stick to one organization and suggested that, maybe, all I was looking for was a change!

The word ‘change’ struck me. Indeed I needed a change in my life. Now the question was, what kind of change? At that time, I never knew the answer would change my life forever.

So, as all mortals do it, I googled, How can I change myself? I found this, ‘CHANGE YOUR ACTIONS, NOT YOURSELF‘. Voila!!


Yes. I was doing a lot of things the wrong way. I needed to take charge, analyze the weak areas and work on them. And, yes, stop being unkind to myself and start loving and appreciating myself more for all the things I already had. I NEEDED A MINDSET CHANGE!

I spent the next week making a list of things that were not present in my life, or I felt needed to be worked on. The list had things from both personal and professional life. One of them was how much I sucked at managing everything and my dream of becoming a top executive one day. With my current job, level of expertise and qualification, becoming a top executive seemed like an unachievable dream. So, I starting researching about how I can make that happen. I zeroed in on MBA. CAT or GMAT? CAT, because, you know, MONEY.

Since I was working full time, I needed to manage my time well in order to make time for studying. Also, there was a need to go the quicker route as CAT was just 6 months away and all I could manage was 3 hours per day for preparation. The quickest way were mocks. Mind you, at this point I was counting on my memory, that whatever I had learnt in 10 standard hadn’t been flushed out of my head. So my prep started with giving mocks right from the beginning, then taking time out to analyze them and then just revising those topics where I was committing recurrent mistakes. For this I needed the best platform where the mocks were closest to the actual CAT exam and the analysis simple and easy to understand. I gave a number of free mocks online and Career Launcher had the best mocks to offer. So, I stuck to giving mocks on CL’s platform on a daily basis and I can’t emphasize enough how much it helped me. The post mock analyses really helped me in grasping quick problem solving skills that are of utmost importance for competitive exams especially for something like CAT. Along with mocks, I also felt the need to try questions that had been asked in CAT before. Here, my friend, who had been preparing for CAT for 2 years, suggested me a book he was using. It was topic-wise and year-wise solved papers from Career Launcher. I bought that book online and gave my heart and soul to CAT prep. I used to study from 11PM to 2AM. My prep went as follows, I divided the whole CAT syllabus into 12 topics, gave one mock from each topic, and followed it up with an analysis the next day which was followed by questions from the same topic from the book I bought. Rinse and repeat!

I would also like to admit that I kind of had a mental advantage because I was already working and didn’t have much to lose except for a few hours of sleep (BTW, Sleep is bae, so it was a lot for me).

My prep also included weekly discussion with my bros on questions that were unique in some way, or needed some help.

6 months of toiling paved the way for an excellent exam. I had exceeded my own expectations and so did my friend. The next day, or should I say midnight, I was on the con call and both of us were bragging about how good we thought we had performed and how likely it was that we would get in A,B or C. This called for celebration! Isn’t it obvious?

We planned to celebrate New Year in Goa, which then shifted to Gokarna, because you know, MONEY. We were ecstatic and obviously had a blast in Gokarna. We thought that we were the best!

Sounds really good isn’t it. A happy ending. Not really! Not yet!

Maybe, if you were paying close attention, you would realize my mistake. Somewhere between the post exam period and our trip, my confidence crossed its limits and I didn’t realize that.

It was mid-January, 2019 already, and I was under the impression that interviews would be a cake walk. I was a bit disappointed after I realized that I wouldn’t get a call from A. But, you know, my confidence was at such a level, or should I say, overconfidence, that I thought it doesn’t matter because I am gonna convert B anyway.

I was a bit reluctant initially, but on my friend’s aggressive insistence, I started searching for interview prep classes. I attended a few trial classes at various places in Connaught Place, finally zeroing in on CL. I got enrolled in the Personality Development Program Personalized at CL. I was seriously late because the classes were already in full swing (the batch starts in December and I got there in late Jan). But I was on cloud nine, and thought I was gonna rock it anyway. Idiotic me.

My first shock came in my first class itself because everybody were 99+%ilers in CL. Like everybody! And these people were freaking awesome. I was shocked. There were A, B, C call getters who had been preparing for interviews since Dec. I was no-where close to them. The kind of preparation tools CL had been giving them so far were excellent and they had made the most of it. And here I was! Lost in my own world! But I had done one good thing. I had joined CL and was put under GP sir’s mentorship. Words are not enough to tell how thankful I am to sir! My first mock was with sir. I was already late for the mock and was nervous. Sir suggested we start with the mock first and then we will do the analysis. Mock lasted for 15 minutes and I had bombed it. Now when I look back, I realize, I had it coming. I couldn’t even answer the basic questions. I remember it very clearly, after the mock, sir said, “Tumne toh puri tyaari kar rakhi hai apni calls waste karni ki, kahan the itne dino se?” I couldn’t have told sir that I was enjoying booz in Gokarna because my overconfidence took the better of me. Sir then made a complete timeline of all my life events and then he taught me a very important thing, “Each one of us has a unique story to tell and the ability to speak about it honestly and sincerely is what an interview is all about”. This advice changed everything for me. I took that sheet and started my prep. I took 20 days leave from office with a sole focus of getting to IIMB. Day in, day out, I used to stare at that sheet and make sample interview pitches. I then used to identify areas where I could be questioned, and I prepared for them. Interview after interview I kept on improving and by the time my IIMB interview was about to happen, I had knowledge of every domain that had a link to my life in some way or the other. This is what I got from CL. A strong foundation!

Now, here, I am, an IIMB convert, waiting to take on MBA with full power hoping that I am able to make my family and mentors proud. What did I learn? Never celebrate too early and remember to have an awesome mentor like GP sir! Thank you sir!

My advice to future aspirants, work hard, dream, make friends that force you to level up and most importantly never stop improving yourself. Your life is a story, make sure to make it the best one!


Mukul Bagre,

IIMB Convert.

PGDM 2019-2021


Believing is Seeing : “In life there is winning and there is losing, both happen. What is never acceptable to me is quitting”. – Beulah, IIMB entrant !

In the next part of the series, ,”Believing is Seeing”, I am going to carry a few personal stories of youngsters who have realized their immediate dream, of securing their admissions in their dream institution. I asked each one of them to write a personal note on

a. What are the key factors that contributed to their success

b. In what ways has the personalized program (PDPP) benefited them

c. What would each like to share with the youngersters who aspire to get into these institutions

Beulah is heading to IIM Bangalore, with over two years of experience in the IT industry behind her.



As they say “It’s not the destination but the journey that counts”. And now as I stop to step into one of the important landing place of my life, IIM B, I sit and reminisce the journey to this place. The ride has started 6 months prior to the CAT exam. The distance was long and the terrain difficult but the focus was clear, and the destination decided. I did hit some speed breakers and reach some road blocks, but was undeterred. The first few months were stormy as I had to battle to strike the balance between work and preparation. There were sleepless nights and stressful days. There were times when I hit low trying to explore new ways, paths beyond the boundaries and was left completely astray.But I was motivated to the core to not give up. I fueled my engine with the confidence that “I Can and I will”, no matter how many times I fall.

IMG_20160316_162825992For any journey to be successful, one needs a guide leading us in the correct path, helping through the rough and rugged times. And on my journey I did find that guide at Career launcher. The mocks were the perfect trail runs before the CAT exam. I didn’t score high and roar during the mocks. I wasn’t even the topper during any mock. But what was important was the analysis of the mocks. They gave me an idea of the amount of hard work and extra effort that is needed to reach the target. They prepared me for the unpredictable storm, and the icy winds that blow across our minds during the D day. What seemed impossible was only possible because the belief I had and the sincerity in the preparation. No matter what never give up in the middle of the Journey. Powered by the knowledge and driven by confidence I acquired through mock analysis and practice I was able to steer through the CAT Results.

But before I could rejoice and end my trip, I have just realized that the” journey had just begun”. It was not the end of the expedition but the start. The most crucial phase of the endeavor, the interviews, were on the way. To drive them was no child’s play. Myriad questions await and haunt you on the way. And the most hounding was the question why MBA? Finding an answer to this question was very important, not just because I had the impending task of impressing the Panels to reach my Spot(IIM), It was important because I had to answer myself as to why I have to leave a bread-winner, my job and pursue MBA spending lakhs. I had to discover my passion and the real reason behind me embarking on this journey.  I found myself lost in the woods finding an answer, I was not able to nail it down as to why I really want to do an MBA.

Enroute to finding an explanation I met a man who was compelling, motivating and engaging. I happen to meet him through the PDP personalized program. Through his compassionate words and engaging talks he gets the passion out of you, makes you realize your dream, makes you stand out of the herd. Sreeni Sir, an affable and empathetic teacher. He never taught me how to play safe, he taught me how to be different. And this made all the difference. I Jpegwent through one of his lectures as to how to write an SOP. Every word racked my brain and motivated every nerve to think. It was because of him that I have realized my area of interest, the solution to my question. I always wanted to enter Media industry, as I always thought of it as the real business in terms of money in and money out. There is a lot of creative control involved in it. Even though many had reservations, He encouraged me to pick this interest of mine and go forward. He propelled my engines and helped me steer through the interview. He never gave me a short route to answer, but he helped to enjoy the ride by myself. He was the charioteer leading me through the battles called “Interviews”. Filled up with the much needed Confidence I was able to crack the IIM B interview and reach the Destination. All is well that ends well, and I had a happy ending with all the support form CL team. Sreeni sir, Raj Sir and Nanda sir, I can’t pay gratitude to these people enough.

Now as I set sail into another interesting journey and plunge into a sea of challenges ahead I carry with me the words that has always invigorated me.

“In life there is Winning and there is losing and in life both happen. What is never acceptable to me is quitting”.

Always believe in yourself. It Is the repetition of affirmations that’s leads to belief and it’s the belief in you that leads to SUCCESS.

Vision for IIM Bangalore : Dr. Sushil Vachani, the new director shares with its Alum

After receiving a mailer from the alumni office, I registered myself for the interaction with Sushil at India International Centre on July 5th. Having been a proactive participant in interactions with all the directors of IIMB since my days at IIMB, Dr KRS Murthy, Dr MR Rao, Dr. Pankaj Chandra I was eager to head for the session.

—————— recalling…

It gives me immense satisfaction in contributing in some way or other to the Institution apart from being an entrepreneur that this institution has ignited. I am sure hundreds of IIMB alum humbly acknowledge our contribution to their career and life! They have been our alums (Career Launcher) before they became alums of IIMB!

Not many may be aware of this fact! I feel delighted to see my paintings and photographs still adorning the walls of the institution even after almost two decades. I vividly recall the interactions that I have had with Dr. Murthy and his encouragement in conceiving the first art exhibition (perhaps only) in the history of the institution. I had managed to inspire quite a few of my class mates and from the next batch to contribute to the exhibition. It was a proud moment to have Mr S M Dutta, then Chairman Hindustan Unilever (chairman BOD of IIMB) to inaugurate that exhibition. Since then, from time to time, my work has featured in the magazines of IIMB.


When I arrived at the venue at the appointed hour, there were a few familiar faces from various classes of IIMB. It was a pleasure meeting Dr. Indira Rajaraman, noted economist, who was a distinguished professor economics at IIMB till 1994. I never had the opportunity to be her student, as I entered IIMB immediately after she left, and I have heard about her legendary classes at IIM Bangalore.

A little while later I had an opportunity to introduce myself and interact with Sushil informally before the session.. Here is the brief profile of Sushil!

Dr. Sushil Vachani, who is a tenured Professor of Strategy and Innovation at Boston University, will took over as Director of the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore on July 1, 2014. During his twenty-eight year career at Boston University, he served in a range of leadership positions: Faculty Director of the International Management Program in Japan, Chairman of the Strategy and Policy Department, Chairman of the Doctoral Program and Special Assistant to the University’s President for its India Initiative. He designed, taught and coordinated programs for students, executives and policy makers in the US, Japan, China and India. He also serves on the board of trustees of the Deshpande Foundation, which promotes economic and social development in the US and India through entrepreneurship.


Dr. Vachani received his doctorate in International Business from the Harvard Business School, a Post Graduate Diploma in Management from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, and a Bachelor of Technology from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur. He has extensive managerial and consulting experience in both the US and India. He worked at the Boston Consulting Group developing strategies for US, Japanese and European multinationals. He also worked with Philips, the Tata Administrative Service and Tata Motors in India.


 Dr. Vachani’s research interests include the global institutional environment of business, multinational-government relations, corporate social responsibility, climate change, strategy and innovation at the bottom of the pyramid and the impact of NGOs on international business. His research has been published in leading journals including California Management Review, Harvard Business Review and Journal of International Business Studies. He has published four books. He is co-editor of Adaptation to Climate Change in Asia and Multinational Corporations and Global Poverty Reduction, editor of Transformations in Global Governance: Implications for Multinationals and other Stakeholders and author of Multinationals in India: Strategic Product Choices.


Dr. Vachani loves traveling and spending time with his family. His favorite cities are Kyoto, Istanbul and Barcelona. He also enjoys visiting New York City, where both his daughters live.


IIMB Ammaji Sneha and Dhruv's perf - 002

The rest of the note here is in first person, with interesting anecdotes shared by Sushil. I thought of presenting in the first person only…

  • “With big names you have been associated with, you may at times get carried away. I would not have been to the US had I not been to IIMA, before that IIT Kanpur, before that St. Columbus school….. Thanks to our parents and their wisdom of seeing education to be very important…..
  • Other day I was with one of my friends and I was carrying this mobile with me..(shows a modest one). My friend showed this mobile to his daughter to tell her that cellphones a couple of years ago looked like these…. ..
  • IIM in 2 years was way ahead of Harvard with 5 years…
  • Education is changing. Changing rapidly… In the initial years it was meant for the kings and the elite… then came the Gurkul…
  • Now cell phone reaches 80% of the population… phones will reach 80% in a decade. Everyone will use to access a range of services. What may happen to education? Access will be free. Of course the certification would cost though..

Education rekindles thinking…. With these things at our finger tips we can reach to the world.

  • World is changing. Technology is giving opportunity..  We need to embrace technology else it will be too overwhelming to cope..
  • The slew of gadgets emerging is going to make life so easy; The human being may be embedded with a few and it is going to impact the way we live ..
  • Massive Open Online Course (MOOCs) – University of phoenix has been a pioneer; later a few moved into online space. For instance, at Harvard, while about 1.6 lakh enrolled for a course on Artificial IntelIigence, only 23000 students completed the course. Coursera and Udacity are a couple of online education and testing platform with huge following.
  • EdX – Harvard and MIT – came together to create the platform… Many units have jumped onto it..
  • We need to embrace the platform of technology; Which one, let us see.. We will not have spontaneous combustion… F. audience – beaming to whom? Who will be target audience?

——- Second area of interest – International business…global perspectives

  • Japan, by virtue of my interest and involvement in the past is a natural choice
  • Will send more and more students abroad for sure, on exchange programmes
  • Create centres and faculty specialists on geographies
  • Build relationships with top universities across the world
  • feed all the learning into the pedagogy in the classrooms

——- Third dimension… Government is usually detested everywhere….but,

  • IIMs would not have been there had it not been for the govt
  • IIMs are national assets..we need to go beyond addressing the creame-la-creame. We need to impact the masses
  • Can we impact small businesses, real India?
  • A blended programme like – MIT poverty lab – can impact immensely

Can we all together not impact in these areas. We need to get together.. We have the urge. The institute can be one of the channels… You, as alumni, can engage with us. Institute can help alumni in the international connections too once we get going in the space..

  • Institute-alum Connect – MIT in the US and IIT Kanpur have a great connect.
  • Sharing Ideas, Regular visits… ..Finally funding by paying up..
  • networking amongst alum itself..
  • connect with the PGP..
  • Harvard / Wellesley college :  do something small and influence the next batches
  • Impacting the society..

[The IIMB team at the session included Aparna, Rohini….saurabh mukherjee (PGP chair), Rakesh godhwani, kavita(communication)]

—— Fourth Dimension – Academic publications

  • Produce our own stuff..
  • Network with publishers..visiting the conferences
  • Invite editors of journals to address faculty  and students..
  • Need to make our doctoral program strong..


Q & A

1. Diversity : Mint did an interview of yours where you quoted about diversity. I am a little curious..

  • we will not dilute quality..
  • women, international students,…
  • we need to orient and market..
  • engage alum for exec-edu program?
  • need to design and market programs

2. Giving back to society…in what way?

  • Do we look at infant mortality rate, women empowerment… how have we impacted?
  • NCAER – fisherman, villages, farmers have been benefited

3. Sense of purpose and mission

  • nation building…manager capability
  • What does India need and what IIMB can contribute
  • Public sector managers….IIMB lost it after the initial phase when it focused on public sector management.
  • IIT Kanpur is in a bubble.. Outside the gates miserable… The institution has not done anything for the betterment of the city..
  • Gyanshala Ahmedabad is a great example to follow..”

Towards the end of the session – Rajeev, an Ex IIMB Prof, now a member of Rajya sabha joined us in the audience and addressed us too..

———————— My thoughts and Suggestions to Sushil for making the institution a great learning place

  • At IIMA, Prof Anil Gupta’s course shodhyatra-like should become integral part of the programme; This enables students to understand the real India and also notice the opportunities that exist
  • OurexperimentsatIWSB (Indus World School of Business) have been path breaking..
    • Students work with small-time entrepreneurs in the institutional eco-system to enhance their business with measurable outcomes
    • Promote entrepreneurship through campus companies, incubation lab, mentoring
    • Offer generous monetary upsides for entrepreneurial endeavours – investing in the company, market access


I was delighted to see a few of my batchmates and friends – Hitesh (CEO and Vandana (Citibank), Vivek Bihani (mentor now – 1992), Ganesha (Walmart now – 1993) and a few more at the dinner interaction…

Looking forward to many many more productive interactions. Hopefully invigorating workshops soon. Thanks

SPANDAN centre-spreads in IIMB Alumnii Summer 2013 issue

I was delighted to receive the mail from IIM Bangalore, my alma mater notifying about the latest issue, the summer 2013 one of Alumni Magazine, which also happens to be the 10th summer issue of the Mag. This issue has a special feature called ART WALK that exclusive covers a few of my photographs from SPANDAN dance photography exhibition which was part of the SPANDAN dance festival celebrating the human spirit that I had at IHC, Delhi in April-May 2013 to coincide with the world dance week, and at IIM Calcutta during the SPIC MACAY international convention in May 2013

I am reproducing the editorial mail and the links to the issue; Also the cover and SPANDAN centre-spreads from the issue here.

SPANDAN centre spread in the IIMBAa summer 2013 issue – page 1

SPANDAN centre spread in the IIMBAa summer 2013 issue – page 2

SPANDAN centre spread in the IIMBAa summer 2013 issue – page 3

You can very well click on the links below, in the text, to browse the whole issue of the magazine online or even download the PDF format to see on your laptop.

Dear All,

We are ten! We planned, we stumbled, we fell, we executed, we soared. We managed to achieve ten editions, covering a range of topics from humanitarian work to gaps in healthcare services, from women empowerment to entrepreneurship. And we couldn’t have done this without your patronage and support.

A big thank you to all of you!

Presenting the Summer Edition of IIMB Alumni Magazine

The IIMB Alumni magazine issue of Summer 2013, that carries SPANDAN centre spreads

Read the Magazine as a Flip Book

Download the PDF version

In this edition we shift our focus to another world that we have started to inhabit: the virtual world. Would it be wrong to say that we oscillate between two world, the real and virtual? We buy clothes online, plan holidays online and even buy groceries online! Our lives are slowly becoming entwined with the wires of our laptop charger. Ecommerce has become an important if not an integral part of lives. And according to statistics, the day is not far when it will become an integral part too. In this edition five alumni speak about their experiences, their visions, plans, investments and heartburn in e commerce. Also, two of our Professors give their advice on how to tame ecommerce.

Also in the Magazine:

This January we had a panel discussion – ‘How to write your first book’ – that captured the imagination of many. It is arguably the most attended alumni event at IIMB. If you are someone who’s hands are itching to write and you missed to attend – the Magazine brings you a digest.

R Sreenivasan PGP 96 takes you on an art walk through his photo feature Spandan. Spandan is a celebration of human spirit in the form of Dance.

It has been happy and exciting few months for our alumni! Couple of our former alumni secretaries got married and some alumni have been visited by the stork.

Enjoy reading and let us know your thoughts on the Magazine. Your responses mean a lot to us.

Write to: or

IIMB Alumni Association
Bangalore -560076
Ph +91 80 26993463

IIMB Alumni Website
IIMB Virtual Tour. Click here
IIMB online Merchandise

Building an Institution : B-schools to search within – A session with Prof Rishikesha T Krishnan

Rishikesha T Krishnan, Chairperson Corporate strategy & Policy Area, IIM Bangalore

Rishikesha T Krishnan, Chairperson Corporate strategy & Policy Area, IIM Bangalore

Rishikesha T Krishnan, in the last two decades, has been very active in the spaces of strategy and innovation, and championed on how they can be made integral to the systems to enhance the competitiveness of organizations on one end to nation building on the other. He is a member on the boards of various government, quasi-government bodies as well as editorial boards of prestigious publications. His silent work has found space in the public domain in the form of research papers and books. His last work From Jugaad to Systematic Innovation: The Challenge for India caught the imagination of policy makers, intellectuals and students of innovation alike. He has been showered with many awards – Dewang Mehta Award for Best Teacher, Jamuna Raghavan chair in Entrepreneurship at IIMB, IFCI award for best thesis at IIMA etc. His complete profile can be perused at Prof. Rishikesha T Krishnan

Prof. H Chaturvedi inviting and introducing Rishikesha T Krishnan, Prof A Sahay, Prof P N Mishra, Prof Rishikesha

Prof. H Chaturvedi inviting and introducing Rishikesha T Krishnan, Prof A Sahay, Prof P N Mishra, Prof Rishikesha

I thank Prof. H Chaturvedi, Director BIMTECH, for inviting me to be part of the invigorating session by Rishikesha at the campus. I was thrilled to be there listening to a thinking individual and was also nostalgic about meeting a professor from my alma mater, IIM Bangalore. Rishi moved into IIMB the very year I graduated (1996), hence missed being in the same learning spaces. I have had a few interactions with Rishi in the last few years at our Alumni get-togethers or over the phone, but this was the first time I was in a session of his. I was more delighted because the session was about institution building and building of self that go hand-in-hand, which is of great interest to me personally. I invest a lot of my time in these spaces.

The session was chaired by Prof P N Mishra, Director and Dean, Institute of Management studies, Devi Ahilya University, Indore and anchored by Prof Arunaditya Sahay, Dean (Research), BIMTECH.

The session with Rishi is in first person as I documented while the session was underway. I sought his permission to blog this. Here it is.

We as a nation are known internationally in the strategy and innovations space because of the two stalwarts, Late Prof C K Prahlad and Prof Sumatra Goshal, whose contributions have impacted organizations and nations.

Revisiting the B-School Curriculum and program Design

As part of understanding the shifts being made and envisaged in the B-school curriculum, I was a member of team that visited a few campuses in the US, like Kellogg, Stanford. MIT, Cornell, Wharton and Yale

Key lessons from US business schools

  • MBA has become more of business analytics than administration
  • Does not foster professional dimensions, especially ethics and governance
  • Promotes most of theoretical framework, we need to move towards applied discipline

US schools response

  • Dire need to link theory and practice
  • Can we think of labs for experiential learning
    • sustainability lab, ecological outcome; work with start-ups
    • work with consulting companies to anchor the. Courses exposing to real problems
    • people come with different background and levels of understanding and analytical thinking; build on people prior experiences
  • Integrated approaches to managerial problem-solving
    • can we look from stake holder’s perspective – customer, investor, partners etc
    • Eg: Yale looks at raw cases and is not packaged in most of the cases; internal portals eg. All related articles regarding an issue and keeps updating (eg Maruti unrest, can I compile are reports and articles historically to the current situation)
  • Focus area on leadership
    • Kellogg : values and crisis decision making
    • Sloan : intensive Leadership workshops
    • Stanford : capstone leadership course
  • More attention on career planning
    • most have no access to unbiased view of careers, industry and companies
    • passport seminars
    • active immersion : going through the whole course
    • Mintzberg’s matrIx ..will to manage vs zest for business  (I will update this with the matrix soon)
Prof Rishikesha in his flow

Prof Rishikesha in his flow

What are the priorities for the Indian business schools?

  • Building business acumen
    • can we build more insights from traditional businessman’s acumen – cash, profits, assets, growth, people etc
    • Using simulation tools actively in our curriculum
    • What does it mean to be a professional
      • people are watching our behavior patterns – authoritative etc, how do we take care
      • Learning by doing (eg.)
        • businessmen teaching, real life issues, evaluation
        • managers supportive of innovation and change – can we give more opportunities to explore
        • Collaborative skills- need to really help future managers to work on this,
        • Sustainability – A key to future course world-wide
        • How to keep all Stakeholders perspective

Institutional building – Curriculum building is taken care of if we do institutional building

  • Matrix on – relevance and practice Vs research, conceptual rigor
  • IIMA must have been a pioneer in India, but what next – the recent cover story in a magazine talks about IIM going back to B-school?!
  • ISB, Hyderabad, started just a decade ago has walked into the IVY leagues of the world. Why?
    • People with strong wherewithal backing it
    • clear vision
    • strong international partners
    • now capable young resident faculty
    • Scaleed to recruit 570 students
    • New campus in Mohali now
    • resources,
    • flexibility,
    • determination to make it
    • Matrix – theory of business V (I will update this with the model soon)

IIMB Trajectory : There has been a significant shift even at IIMB in the last 7 years

  • Focusing on research capabilities
  • Enhanced support of internal research projects
    • use of internal resources to push faculty to excel
      • incentivizing for high quality research output; when you incentivize other things why not research
      • inviting more and more people to visit Campus and take seminars
      • First Research and publications report has come out – target the most reputed  Financial Express 45 journal’s list
  • LEARNING FROM THE STRATEGY AREA EXPERIENCE – we have been consciously working at it even more assiduously
    • can we recharge the faculty to take initiatives in the right direction
      • vibrant doctoral program in management
      • largest number of doctoral programs (15 at any time); 9 of 13 alumni are faculty at other IIMs
      • Emphasis on that get invited for – Awards, seminars and proceedings
      • faculty research and student research programmes have to be synergistic and synced
      • students work published in SMA
      • One of our senior most professor, Prof Ramachandran, teaches his courses with his own cases
      • We do Outreach programmes – Strategic Management teachers programmes – foundation course for faculty from other institutions
      • Shared committed to excellence at the dept level
        – strategic plan for the department has been created

Each one of us can be invaluable to an institution, if we are clear on what we are here for. Have we got our plan right? So questions to ask for, is –

    • Have got strategic goals for self
    • what am I bringing here
    • how much am I driven internally

As an institution we need to ask a few questions

  • Can we create supportive environment
  • You cannot buy innovations. How do I promote constituents to take the initiative
  • Money can play a role to some extent. In fact, we should take money off the table. Yes, raise the compensation base to a comfort level
  • Can we create research platforms
  • Encourage and recognize excellence in all that we do
  • Could be a good practice – CAN I TAKE OATH THAT I WILL EXCELL IN WHATEVER I DO

I wind up by showing A MODEL OF ENGAGED SCHOLARSHIP – source Prof. Ramachandran (I will update this with the model soon)

Q & A

1. What do you think of Qualitative research and relevance in our country? How do people perceive it?

A. Internationally, they shy away. But there has been many a development of late. Now QR is being made rigorous – understand and incorporate


A lot must be happening, considering the popularity it has gained. (quite a few people shared)

  • perception handling : influence and impacts – Look at the Arab spring, Occupy movement, the recent incidents in India
  • information warfare : being used extensively; very potent way of creating panic
  • education : A lot being done.

3. INDUSTRY’s understanding of research and how to apply

Yes, we need to work on educating them and making them partners in many ways


ISB is a success story; Though they had a lot going for them, I am sure every institution if determined can make it happen.

Prof P N Mishra’s Concluding address :

  • Research : relevance and context are very important
  • Look at Japan and Korea Vs the US and UK : The oriental philosophies of building nation is very different from occidental. Each one has succeeded in own ways, at the same time failed the world in many
  •  A real good teacher is one who endeavors to create students better than oneself..

If you don’t dare to make mistakes now, when will you – My Journey with Piyush Sharma

Piyush Sharma, Dean (internationalization), Hong kong polytechnic university on IWSB campus

Piyush Sharma, Dean (internationalization), Hong kong polytechnic university on IWSB campus

Prof. Piyush Sharma, Dean (internationalization) from Hong Kong Polytechnic university was on the IWSB campus to deliver and interact as part of My Journey series of June. This initiated the Pg 11-13 batch too as it was their first My Journey interaction. The new batch was still trickling in and the pg12 was eager to take off this year.

Piyush who has had his university education in Engineering at Delhi College of Engineering, continued his MBA from IIM Bangalore after a few years of working in the corporate world. He went on to do his Ph.D. in marketing from Nanyang University a good 15 years later. In this interactive session he was not only sharing his journey but also was challenging the students to push themselves. Most of his interaction was through questions he himself raised or the ones raised by participants.

Why join acads, even when there was not much money?

Reasons could be –
– like to teach
– make name as a good facilitator and mentor
– Quest for knowledge
– Stable life

Then thought came about PhD.
o Which discipline
o After PhD what, where?

My education broadly can be summarised as –
– 1987 : BE, DCE
– 1993 : IIM Bangalore
– 2006 : Phd, Nanyang, Spore

What did I do before your PhD?

– 1987-89 BHEL, Jhansi
– 89-91 Consulting, Bureau of public enterprises, Delhi
o Economy opened up
o Mandal commission agitation
o Tinanmen square
o Government was thinking of selling off public enterprises
Then went to IIMB, followed by –
– 1993-2002
o Marketing at ITC, Dabur, Becton Dickinson, Hometrade
§ Move from one company to another, mostly for money. That doubles at every jump!!
– 2006-Nov
o Hong Kong Polytechnic, Hong Kong

What do you expect from your job and career? piyush asked
– Money
– Job satisfaction
– Discovering self
o Discovered that I can work under stress too
– Good work environment
o Physical
o Psychological
– Designation and status
– Challenges

What am I passionate about? Questions to be asked :
– What do I love
– What is my personality
– What gets me going

A few are successful and not every one. What are chief ingredients to succeed

o Forming an outlook that is positive
o Solution finder than problem creator
o Self correcting attitude
o Humility to acknowledge that I need to improve
Risk Taking
o To get into places
Ability to learn
Ability to analyse
o Recognizing right time to do MBA
o Should know when to strike it to make big impact
Think like a manager
o If I were the manager in the org, how will I go about.
o Balancing between how to act quickly and
o If it is my company, what would I do
o To be able to be in the zone 24/7
Take more informed decision
o Do good research
Be a good people person
o Understand people
o Motivating people
Be aware of the value that you are adding;
o Do not lose sight of what is happening beyond or behind

[OCB – Organizations Citizenship Behaviour : Understand
of Knowing about the organization, how it is impacting and how it is growing]

– Being able to learn on the job
o You are living in a world that is fast changing
o [Black Swann – book…]
o It always existed, but not many have seen it
o You cannot plan for a few incidents, but have to cope with
o There are people who have wider perspective and are able to see what every one talks about
o Make and see that you can adopt a few of things that you learn from
o Try and innovate and come out with your own ideas

– Have your voice
o Try and do things to raise your visibility in the organization
o When you are working in a team, take initiatives
o Eg When I was in ITC, based in odisha
§ Need to develop network with people with similar situations
§ Turn over tax was an Issue, which I thought should be taken up at the highest level
· Distribution via Bihar than directly in Odisha
· Presentation to be made to the CM
· Later they withdrew the tax
o It is about risk taking too
o Be open to learning

What motivated to do PhD?

– Passion, family in education could be one of the influencers
– I always took training modules in which ever company I have served in
· I was the best trainer in the company even when I was a sales guy
· Selling, talking to people is a passion,

How did you realize that money is not your motivation time?

– I could not see my son for the first four years of his existence
– So being with family was an important parameter

Changing companies? why?

– In the beginning it was mostly for money
– As I grew, things changed and I learnt more

Learning regarding human beings

– I worked through India and outside too
– Do not judge by the cover
– People look very different but give them a chance
– Let them share what they want to
– Do not pre-judge people

Structured vs Start up
– If you enjoy being in creative mode, dirtying hands then you will thrive
– Make mistakes now if you want to, since opportunities cost is low now

– Organizations shape the behaviour of people within, though People shape organizational behaviour too
– Cultural intelligence
o Different levels
o People are different – do not judge through your lense
o You have to have passion – learnt tamil when I was posted in Chennai

Understanding with my boss is a process, it is not an event. You have to be very cautious and figure out what and how.

Two of the take homes from the session are –
· Passion is fundamental
· If you do not make mistakes now, when will you!!

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