Search This Blog

Wednesday, June 27, 2007


Finally I send the most difficult mail of my life…. hold on…if you think it’s a love letter then you are wrong…it’s even tougher than that….

I had not yet informed about my career decisions to the company which I worked for (before joining ISB). My ex-boss was aware of my post-MBA plans, but unfortunately he did not come to know it from me directly…

I had written the mail earlier but it was not that easy to send the mail, informing that I will be taking a slightly different path. The memories of those lovely four years were even clearer. First job is always the first job…The sweet Nariman Point office (where I had joined this company and from where it shifted to Andheri later) is so difficult to forget in life.

In those five months, I had stayed in that office, I got an idea of the real corporate world for the first time. I learnt that its not the long equation mentioned in Taggarts (That’s considered the Bible of Naval) that defines which machinery should be fitted in a ship, instead it’s the decision of the management of how long they want to do away with the ship.

Life will move on…but certain things will always be special…and even decades after... when you will look back….you will try to gather each of those fragmented priceless moments of that very special FIRST JOB.

(And a short while ago I got the reply from my ex-boss. He congratulated me on my decision and wished me all the best)

Tuesday, June 26, 2007


Two of my newly joined MBA colleagues and myself were trying to analyze the prevalent culture in the top business conglomerates of India. Most of these family led businesses are going through interesting times. They are hiring MBAs in large numbers and developing a mindset that shifts from a traditional hierarchical culture to a young and open culture.

At the same time we were also discussing the problems and the challenges that such huge organizations are likely to face during this process. One of the most important skills we realized is how to deal with people. As an MBA from a leading school, it’s easy to find your first post MBA designations as managers or senior managers (talking about laterals only). These same roles are sometimes even termed AVPs in some organizations. Now there will be a person (twice your age), who has risen from the grassroots and has remained loyal to an organization. But, his designation is officially lower than yours. This provides a difficult situation and dealing with such man-management issues is likely to be one of the biggest challenges.

There is also a kind of cultural mix. Its easy to find a boss, from whom you can learn so many things, and at the same time the traditional support staff can create delay in the execution of various processes. Extremely competitive people as well as the lousy ones will inhabit the same office. Dealing with all these varieties effectively, with due respect to caliber, age and range is quite a challenge.

Its easy to create a job profile which boasts of planning, international business, project execution, fixed asset management, site monitoring…and what not…but at the end of the day all these boils down to the same issue…people management…. technical stuff is always the same (basic finance, accounting, operations etc)…and not the rocket science variety…at least at the level I am in.

Sunday, June 24, 2007


While revisiting my Kolad snaps, came across these three...the first snap pictures a cow near a well. The last one captures an evening moment of a dog. Two pigeons can be seen in the second of them just ready to pick up its flight.


“Keep experimenting and adapting” should be the motto if one wants to stay in this city….

It so happened that I discovered a bus that took 45 minutes from the bus stop (close to my apartment) to my office in the morning. It was a great sense of satisfaction, and I congratulated myself for discovering this bus…so problem of commuting solved… In the evening I took the same bus….but my return journey back home took me three hours…

Next evening I decided not to take the bus back home. I decided to walk till the nearest station …boarded one train, then another and by the time I reached home, it had taken two hours…so I managed to save an extra hour…great.

Third evening on my way back I realized that there exists a concept of share taxi. So my journey started within a share taxi. Share taxi…train 1…train 2….and finally home….and this time I managed to reach home in just one hour and fifteen minutes.

That’s pretty reasonable by the standards of Mumbai. But just as things were beginning to fall in place, heavy rains have been lashing Mumbai for the last couple of days. The trains are delayed; buses are not at their usual best and situation does not look good for the next few days at least…

This city is a tough city….but at the end of the day it teaches a person to keep on adapting and experimenting…and the resilience of the people who stay here is just awesome…

Thursday, June 21, 2007


Days moving on…. and I am getting myself accustomed to the new life. As far as professional life is considered, things are quite interesting. The induction period will soon get over…this period has been quite effective in getting to know the top management, as well as the divisional heads and their team members. People in the top are quite friendly and the divisional heads are co-operative enough to help know the processes and the systems well.

Recently I was asked if any subjects (taught at ISB) has been of more help than others…well to give an answer, I feel it’s the complete synopsis of all the courses that helps in shaping the perspective. There are different profiles in an organization and different people who are involved in the systematic processes of an organization. ISB has helped a lot is this aspect to understand an organization, its people and its processes much better.

However, one may need to get a better grasp of certain courses more than others to customize one’s own role. Considering the fact that my role involves planning in the context of international business and project executions, I personally feel courses like International Finance, Management of Organizations and courses related to operations are directly related to my profile. At the same time the basic accounting (both financial and managerial accounting) are likely to be quite helpful.

Having talked about some of the courses, I still feel that it is my pre-MBA work experience, which has helped me quite a bit in understanding the processes.

Monday, June 18, 2007


The first weekend was rather dull…. equipped myself with some very basic amenities of healthy survival…called some friends only to realize that work has kept them too busy…most of them are busy traveling around. And others are busy getting used to the transition.

Read “Eleven Minutes” during the weekend…. an interesting book…Paulo Coelho has provided quite an interesting perspective on sensitive topics like lust in the context of love and pleasure in the context of pain…The thoughts may not be as inspiring as in Alchemist, but they definitely possess the sensitive element of human nature and aspirations from a different angle.

With the rains around…commuting is going to be tough. Thanks to Bus No.521, commuting has been easier than I thought it to be.

Today morning was interesting as I gathered a fair deal of working knowledge about my job profile…was offered either to move onsite, or to get an idea of the processes and the corporate culture. I think it is a good time to stay a few months in Mumbai, get an idea of all the relevant processes and then decide to move onsite. “Onsite”, let me stress, is not a passport to the developed world, in the kind of business I am in, rather it is likely to take to much tougher places…. anyway…everything is an experience….

Thursday, June 14, 2007


No more seas and the oceans will be the mountains, deserts and rivers...
No more beautiful ships for the time will be the huge power generating towers....
No more countries of the far east and Europe....the present belongs to middle east and Africa...
No more the giant Hyundai offshore structures being built outside my window....its the Vashi local train junction outside...
Well...those are the biggest changes in my professional career after ISB....though the kind of work will carry a lot of similarities with my past career, yet the beauty that was associated with hard core shipping is missing...
But then it is my objective to gain exposure into sister industries that tempted to move into the energy regrets till now....and shipping will always be there....

Wednesday, June 13, 2007


Last ten odd days have been really hectic....the induction process, Kolad adventure trip, entry formalities, accommodation search...
Met 64 other people from the leading bschools of to know some of them quite well...
Finally settled down in Vashi (Navi Mumbai)...hopefully my love for travel will not alienate the Mumbai local trains.
Almost dead now after the induction week...will write in detail about all the interesting things that happened in my next post...