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Tuesday, November 11, 2008


"It is a strange desire, to seek power, and to lose liberty; or to seek power over others, and to lose power over a man's self." - Francis Bacon

Saturday, November 01, 2008

SO FAR....

Six years of professional life…or was it just a blink….
Three different companies…..three different industries…..three different roles…..
Shipbuilding….Power Transmission and Distribution….Oceanic Oil and Energy Exploration and Production…
Technology….Finance….Business Development....
Once again its about the ships....this time not building them...but learning how to use them to create wealth......

Sunday, September 07, 2008


"If you are trying to build a ship, do not tell your workers to go to the forest, chop wood, and build a ship. Instead, instill in them the desire for the sea. They will do the rest." - Deepak Jain

Thursday, September 04, 2008


"Shantaram" is such a classic that every line of this 1000-pager can prove a memorable line to think about. My favorites.....
(1) It's forgiveness that makes us what we are.
Without forgiveness, our species would've annihilated itself in endless retributions. Without forgiveness, there would be no history. Without that hope, there would be no art, for every work of art is in some way an act of forgiveness. Without that dream, there would be no love, for every act of love is in some way a promise to forgive. We live on because we can love, and we love because we can forgive.
(2) Sometimes we love with nothing more than hope. Sometimes we cry with everything except tears. In the end that's all there is - love and its duty, sorrow and its truth. In the end that's all we have - to hold on tight until the dawn
(3) One of the ironies of courage and why we prize it so highly, is that we find it easier to be brave for someone else than we do for ourselves alone
(4) The tendency towards complexity has carried the universe from almost perfect simplicity to the kind of complexity that we see around us, everywhere we look. The universe is always doing this. It is always moving from the simple to the complex.
(5) And I looked at the men, the brave and beautiful men beside me, running into the guns and God help me for thinking it, and God forgive me for saying it, but it was glorious, it was glorious, if glory is a magnificent and ruptured exaltation. It was what love would be like, if love were a sin. It was what music would be, if music could kill you. And I climbed a prison wall with every running step.
(6) The only time he ever stopped hating himself was when the risk he faced became so great that he acted without thinking or feeling anything at all
(7) At first, when we truly love someone, our greatest fear is that the loved one will stop loving us. What we should fear and dread instead is that we won’t stop loving them, even after they are dead and gone.
(8) Nothing in any life, no matter how well or poorly lived, is wiser than failure or clearer than sorrow. And in the tiny precious wisdom they give to us, even those dreaded and hated enemies, suffering and failure, have their reason and their right to be.
(9) I don’t know what frightens me more, the power that crushes us, or our endless ability to endure it
(10) A dream is a place where a wish and a fear meet. When the wish and fear are exactly the same, we call the dream a nightmare.
(11) Guilt is the hilt of the knife that we use on ourselves, and love is often the blade; but it’s worry that keeps the knife sharp; and worry that gets most of us, in the end.
(12) Luck is what happens to you when fate gets tired of waiting.
(13) Sometimes you love only with hope, sometimes, you cry without tears. Sometimes, that’s all that is left, to cling together till the dawn.
(14) The past reflects eternally between two mirrors -the bright mirror of words and deeds, and the dark one, full of things we didn't do or say.
(15) Men reveal what they think when they look away, and what they feel when they hesitate. With women, it’s the other way around.
(16) Happiness is a myth. It was invented to make us buy new things.
(17) It's such a huge arrogance, to love someone, and there's too much of it around. There's too much love in the world. Sometimes I think that’s what heaven is - a place where everybody's happy because nobody loves anybody else, ever.
(18) You can never tell what people have inside them, until you start taking it away
(19) Silence is the tortured mans revenge
(20) News is about what people do. Gossip is about how they enjoyed doing it.
(21) Every virtuous act has some dark secret in its heart; every risk we take contains a mystery that can’t be solved.
(22)...The wrong thing for the right reason…

Friday, August 29, 2008


One year and three months….this is the time I spent during the tenure of my first post-MBA job. Another week, and after that I will be moving out to try the next assignment of professional life.

These fifteen months were certainly not without learnings….This is the place where I got a chance to work closely with the top management….this is the place where I feel I have developed a sense of professional maturity (in other words, patience). It was also the place where I got the first hand glimpse of what we had learnt in the first half of ISB – mostly Corp Fin and Accounting.

However, in spite of all the learnings, I could feel myself drifting into a comfort zone. Corporate life in a big company is slow (at least at my level). The easy money associated with it promises a safe, yet predictable and unexciting life. After a certain stage, every day is a replica of another, months and quarters are cyclical, and the initial excitement level keeps dropping.

And after a certain period, you wonder …. “Lets get out of this comfort zone, lets try something which has the potential to pump in more professional excitement into life”

Thursday, August 28, 2008


Sometimes we read books to kill time…Namesake, Above Average, The Sub Altern Saheb
Sometimes we read to experience the adrenaline rush…
Airport, The Final Diagnosis
Sometimes we read to lie down and keep recollecting the experience of reading the book ...Shantaram

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


With the frequency of posts at its lowest, I had the impression that this blog is in a state of wilderness…with no visitors. However I was wrong…

Many thanks to all those who have posted those lovely comments….

Sunday, August 03, 2008


Isn't this what "trust" is about....

Friday, April 18, 2008


Jim Collins authored this book after his earlier work “Built to Last”, but he advises readers to consider this work as a prequel to his earlier book. While Built to last was about visionary, lasting organizations, “Good to Great” is about mediocre organizations which leaped to greatness.

A typical Jim Collins book…..extremely well researched over years, this book elucidates certain concepts using 11 companies which satisfied a typical pattern – “fifteen-year cumulative stock returns at or below the general stock market, punctuated by a transition point, then cumulative returns at least three times the market over the next fifteen years". As in his earlier book, Jim Collins has also maintained a list of comparative companies.

Jim Collins has beautifully written this book with the information of a business book and the sensitivity of an artistic creation. In this process, he has explored appealing concepts, which he discovered to be the key constituents of each of the Good to Great companies. Some of the findings are –

Leaders and the way they think - (early build up to greatness)
(1) Level five leaders (who build enduring greatness through a mix of personal humility and professional will)
(2) Hedgehog concept (ask - what you are passionate about, what you can be the best in the world at, what drives your economic engine – and then do those things which answer all the three questions)
(3) Stockdale Paradox – (retain faith that you will prevail in the end, regardless of difficulties and at the same time confront the most brutal facts of your current reality, whatever they might be)
(4) First Who, then What (first find the right people, then think what to do)

Breakthrough and leap to greatness
(5) Flywheel building momentum (incremental and cumulative efforts, which help the system to get momentum)
(6) Culture of discipline (culture of discipline as different from tyranny)
(7) Technology accelerators (aligning technology with the strategy of the organization as streamlined by the hedgehog concept)

Jim Collins has consummately merged the concepts of this book with that of his earlier “Built to Last”.

In this book, Jim Collins doesn’t restrict his thoughts to the corporate world but links the concept of greatness with a subtle sensitiveness….greatness is not about being huge…its about discovering excellence and meaningfulness in work….Nor is greatness limited to the corporate…it can be discovered in every aspect of life.

Felt tempted to quote the last paragraph of the book -

“When all these pieces come together, not only your work move towards greatness, but so does your life. For in the end, it is impossible to have a great life unless it is a meaningful life. And it is difficult to have a meaningful life without meaningful work. Perhaps then, you might gain that rare tranquility that comes from knowing that you have had a hand in creating something of intrinsic excellence that makes a contribution. Indeed, you might even gain that deepest of all satisfactions knowing that your short time here on this earth has been well spent and that it mattered.”

Wednesday, April 09, 2008


Spring time….lovely weather….wide roads penetrating the deserts…..a three hour long drive from Abu Dhabi to Dubai and finally, I was in the Dubai airport to get back home….

The car stopped not far from the airport entrance and the sixty-something year old, kurta clad wrinkle faced, bearded person, who has been driving this vehicle got down to pick my luggage. Somehow I managed to dissuade him not to pick my luggage. He walked to the trolley section and got one trolley where I loaded my baggage. Then shook hands with him and waved him goodbye…

I still had three hours in the airport….did some minor shopping and then relaxed in the airport….one of my shortest trips…just three days….kept on reminiscing the last three days….

A unique mix….both Indians and Pakistanis form an integral chunk of population of this part of the Arab world…the deserts…the classiest buildings and towers…the Dubai FM…and the even the Karachi Durbar (the popular Pakistani restaurant in Dubai)….and the drives…especially the last one…from Abu Dhabi to Dubai....and the chitchat I had with the driver…

I was tired and would have rather preferred to take a nap during the drive…but then the driver asked me something “Aap Bombay se hain?”….I gave a reflexive nod and asked him if he was a native of one of the Emirates…There was a change in the expression of his face…he looked down…and stammered…nahin, hum Pakistan se hain, 20 saal se yahin pe hain…Do saal mein ek baar Pakistan jaate hain.

Somehow the conversation proceeded and I enjoyed talking with this person…Ahmed was his name and I addressed him as “Ahmad Bhai”. Perhaps I am too young to address him this way, but then I couldn’t think of a better way to address him. He kept on talking and I kept on listening….He talked about India….the British…he talked about India and Pakistan…..the Indo-Pak wars…the politicians of the two countries….the people of the two countries…..his experience in Dubai…languages like Arabic and Urdu….

Hum to ek hi kaum ke log hain…Janat se bhi khoobsurat hai Hindustan aur Pakistan….lekin kya karein….that was how he started his conversation….his hatred for the British and the politicians was evident….

Once he was out of the Indo-Pak issue, he talked about the beautiful Arabic language…the rich Arab world…. about his life in Dubai…his family in Pakistan.
Finally, we entered the Dubai downtown and he concentrated on his driving.

Almost one and half month after, as I sit down to pen down this experience, the wrinkled face of that old Pakistani driver is clearly visible. The three hour long drive from Abu Dhabi to Dubai would have been lost in the memory lane as just another drive but for this Pakistani driver.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008


Maverick (by Ricardo Semler) - Was it about doing business in the unreal world of Brazil….or was it about a “quirky laboratory” (read the company Semco) run by a few impudent and iconoclastic managers. Its about both, each intertwined within the other.
It is about a distinct way of running a company, Its neither socialist, nor is it purely capitalist, it’s the third way – “ a more humane, trusting, productive, exhilarating and in every sense rewarding way. As Ricardo closes the book – “ To forget socialism, capitalism, just in time deliveries, salary surveys, and the rest of it, and to concentrate on building organizations that accomplish the most difficult of all challenges: to make people look forward to coming to work in the morning.”

The author claims that this is not a business book, nevertheless, I feel this book should be among the must read lists of all business students. It’s to understand the iconoclastic methods of Ricardo Semler, wherein he creates a system within Semco, where the employees choose their bosses as well as their own salaries. The system was strong enough to successfully survive the volatile Brazilian economy and inflation (which often went as high as 400%).

Monday, April 07, 2008


"Blue Ocean Strategy" is an exceptional book by W.C.Kim and Renee Mauborgne.
“Giving the people what they want is fundamentally and disastrously wrong. The people don’t know what they want …Give them something better”

Red oceans are all the industries in existence today—the known market space as understood today. Blue oceans, in contrast, denote all the industries not in existence today.

Blue Ocean strategy is nothing new. It has been existent over the ages. Many successful organizations and individuals have followed this strategy in the past. “Creating something new” is the simplest way in which I can sum up the philosophy of this book. In this book, the authors have just formalized the concept in a great way.

According to the authors, there is hardly any attractive or unattractive industry per se.
Blue Ocean can be created by reinventing, thinking out of box, creating new markets, and converting non customers into customers. The authors also stress the importance of consecutive rounds of blue ocean creation. Blue Ocean strategy is not a static achievement but a dynamic process, which can be created both by industry incumbents and new entrants.

“Value addition” is perhaps one of the most powerful phrases used during the business school lectures. This book speaks of something called “Value innovation”. Value innovators achieve a leap in value by creating new wealth rather than at the expense of competitors in the traditional sense. The concept is based on a non-zero sum game.

The authors have elucidated the concept using lot of examples and have suggested frameworks and models. Both conventional cases (like Model T of Ford and NYPD’s legendary chief Bratton) and numerous big and small organizations are explained in detail

The authors have created jargons (like “Placing kingpins in the fish bowl” and “Angels and devils”), which I am sure are quite popular already.

The basic theme of the book can be summed up as follows -

(1) Reconstruct the market boundaries (Look across alternative industries, strategic groups within industries, chain of buyers , complementary products, emotional appeal of buyers and finally time)
(2) Reach beyond the existing demand
(3) Get the strategic sequence right (exceptional utility, strategic pricing and target costing and adoption)

The authors have used the concept of strategy canvas where they study an organization with respect to its competitors. What differentiates a successful organization is its focus and divergence from the competitors well defined by a compelling tagline.

Thursday, March 20, 2008


Before I move ahead to write on the topics which I had mentioned in my last post, let me take a digression and write something about the latest books I read during the last one month.

Making the Cisco Connection: This book, I felt, is a plain description of the origin of the behemoth named Cisco. David Bunnell has described well the nature of the three eras of the Cisco Management –
The entrepreneurial stint of Sandra Lerner and Leonard Bosack (the birth of Cisco)
The Morgridge years (the period of consolidation)
The era of Chambers (the age of expansion)
David has well described the major strategies and the culture of the organization. This book is indeed informative but something was lacking – something that was so striking in Richard Branson’s “Losing my virginity” or Sam Walton’s “Made in America”. Perhaps if some day, Chambers writes the story himself, the missing excitement can creep in.
I found something different in this book regarding JVs when David writes about Chambers -
“In JVs – no single transaction he’s had, he says has been 50-50. Sometimes CISCO’s partner will get 70% of the benefit, and the next time CISCO might get 80% of the benefit. All in all it adds up to 50-50.

The Age of Discontinuity: This book by Peter Drucker was first published in 1968.
Through this book, Drucker looked into the future and predicted stuff which we have taken for granted today. He mentioned about four sources of discontinuity, which he felt, marked the end of the then existing continuity. These sources are
Origin of new industries, new entrepreneurs and new economic policies
Changing society tending towards pluralism and privatization
Knowledge economy
The term “knowledge economy” and “knowledge worker” became almost a sociological jargon after this book.
Drucker foresaw the last decade of the last millennium well in advance. He was indeed two decades ahead of his time. No wonder he is considered the greatest management mind of this era.

Games Indians Play: This is an interesting book by V. Raghunathan. In this book, the author has tried to explain why we (Indians) are the way we are by using Prisoners dilemma. While the author has maintained a simple environment in spite of using complex behavioral economics terms like rationality, systematic chaos etc., I feel he could also have used Prisoner’s Dilemma and other game theory principles to the context of Indian-ness as well. I mean he has used game theory as a tool to explain why Indians are the way they are. Perhaps he could have done a better job had he used the game theory to answer the question “what makes Indians behave the manner they do” in the context of the socio-economic status of India. However, this book is a good read…especially for its simplicity in dealing with complex things.

Saturday, March 08, 2008


If you are one of those, whose heart appreciates the mystical dance forms and enigmatic tunes of ancient India, then Abhinaya is indeed the right place for you. This site consists of high quality videos of some of the oldest and rarest of Indian dance forms, apart from the audios of tunes, music and poetry. The catalogue is likely to pick up exponentially within the next few days. If the above videos enchant you, don’t forget to login to


Back to good old life mode after the submission of the longest report of my life….a hundred page report on a power transmission line running across the Arabian Desert. It was a tremendous experience to drive through the deserts….to visit six out of the seven Emirates of U.A.E......Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Umm ul Quain, Ras Al Khaimah, Sharjah, Ajman…

With the submission of the report, I am now back to blogging after a long time.

Will write about the following topics in my next series of posts

(1) Abhinaya
(2) Chit-chat with a Pakistani in a different land
(3) Snapshots from the deserts

Wednesday, February 13, 2008


With ISB in the venerable list of the top Global schools (FT Ranking), things look quite rosy for other schools also. is it going to affect the local scenario. Some possible outcomes according to me –

The Indian schools will reinvent themselves to fulfill the criteria and the requirements of the most prestigious international rankings. The three most respected rankings are WSJ (Wall Street Journal), FT (Financial Times) and BW (Business Week). Unless a business school finds a place in one of these lists, it better try to reinvent itself.

IIM-A shall the next Indian school to appear in the FT rankings, but not before 2009. According to FT criteria, a program/b school must have been operational for a minimum of 5 years and 3 batches must have passed out. They have to bank on their one year MBA to suit the FT criteria – GMAT, Work ex etc. But once they enter, they will be pretty high in the List. But interestingly, they will be in the ranks (Global MBA) due to the new One Year MBA.

The International rankings will see a host of Indian schools circulating, quite high in the list. Indian schools always had the abilities, but may be due to complacency, they never took serious interest in prestigious international rankings. As a result they never reinvented themselves. They were happy with local Indian rankings. Now with ISB starting the trend of global rankings, things look extremely good for the Indian top schools.

Organizations like AICTE hopefully will get out of the bureaucratic outlook and pay attention to the real issues of education.

The age of international sophisticated accreditations for Indian B-Schools is around the corner – Once again, by all probabilities, ISB will be the 1st Indian school to get the most prestigious international accreditation – AACSB.
International accreditations are a must to maintain international standards.

The narrow minded parochial mindset of the top Indian B-Schools will be replaced by a more competitive global outlook. They will stop reacting to changes. ISB always has a lot of critics, primarily because this six year old school keeps on achieving one laurel after another. But then, I believe that there are two types of critics – a critic, who criticizes to earn money...basically that, his profession; and the other who is jealous. And there is no point in remaining jealous. In fact I have always believed that our schools can benefit a lot by cooperating with each other….the same way as the likes of Harvard, Wharton, MIT and Kellogs cooperate with each other.

The number of international applicants will rise in Indian schools

And last but not the least, the research culture will pick up. And by research, I mean the quality research

India, I believe, is the only country apart from US, which has the potential to have at least 5 colleges in top 20. Let’s hope for the best. And by 2010, it should be possible.

Saturday, February 09, 2008


Just 3 more days remain for Abhinaya to unfold...

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


Read “Made in America” by Sam Walton…the saga of the creation of the Worlds biggest organization….from the voice of Sam Walton himself.

This book is amazing….depicts the heart of Wal-Mart…..its technology, sophisticated distribution system, associates culture…..

Also Sam Walton has depicted himself through this book…as he broke all frontiers of success…His famous Hula dance in the Wall Street…his Saturday mornings with his associates…his fleet of little airplanes which he piloted himself….and all such stories which were instrumental in building the Wal-Mart culture.

The ideas of Sam are as entertaining as it can be…and I will like to include two lines from the book…

This one is about the basic marketing trick, which Sam asks his associates to practice

“From this day forward, I solemnly promise and declare that every time a customer comes within 10 ft of me , I will smile look him in the eye, and greet him”

This one is about having the right person at the right time

“All along the history of Wal-Mart has been marked by having the right people in the right job when we needed them the most. We had Whitaker, straight out of the get-after-it-and stay-after-it old school, to help get us started, Ferold , a methodical hardworking German, to get us organized, Ron Mayer a whiz at computers to get our systems going, Jack Shewmaker, a brilliant shoot-from-the-hip executive with a store managers mentality and David Glass who could step up in a crisis, keep his cool, and eventually get control of a company that became so big that it was hard to comprehend".

Also read “Wise and Otherwise” by Sudha Murthy….a book depicting individual instances….extremely simple book….with powerful messages in the Indian context

The third book was “Teaching the Elephant to Dance” by James Belasco….a book about Change Management….This book is informative…well researched …but somehow I felt it was too textual in nature (may be because I was reading “Made in America” also during the same time...

So that’s about the books….

Ah yes… something about ISB….Its official now…..ISB is ranked 20, in the world, by the influential Financial Times (FT)…..once again, my Alma mater has broken all records…..and this time the records are not just in the Indian context….its global….the youngest B-School to make it to these rankings (In fact, TOP 20)…ISB has indeed redefined the concept of Indian B School education….

Monday, January 21, 2008


300 posts already posted in this blog…So want my 301st post to have something special…

Let me post something, which I really liked.... This was written by EM six months back.


About twenty yrs back from today a three yrs old kid was sitting along with her grandfather in his lap in an arm chair in the porch of the verandah….JJ (Grandfather in Oriya) chair that is what we used to refer that chair as.It was his favourite chair.
Kid : JJ what does puuo mean??
JJ : It means son
Kid : Why do u call Appa as puuo??Is he ur son??
JJ : Yes, he is my puuo
Kid : Who is my puuo??
JJ : Ha ha, who do u want ur puuo to be??
Kid : Can I choose my Puuo JJ??
JJ : Yes, u can…so whom do u choose then as ur puuo??
Kid : U….u be my puuo from today JJ…will u be??
JJ : Ha ha sure my dear…but then who ll be ur JJ if I be ur puuo!!
Kid : (After some serious thot) we will shorten JJma’s name as JJ….if I need a JJ
JJ : Ha ha ha ok
And so he became my puuo from being my JJ :).He used to feed me when I used to throw tantrums and find excuses for not eating making my mother give up on me in frustration.He wud bribe me with chocolates and toys and make me drink milk and then take all the credit for accomplishing the great task.My puuo and I wud together have bitter gourd curry together…..I eating on his behalf and he on my behalf….. and the bitterness of the curry would get drowned in our laughter and togetherness. He taught me alphabets before joining school.He taught me the difference between multiplication and divison…when I could never differentiate between them.He taught me multiplication tables till 12th table and I could never learn higher than 12th table till date.And today he’s taught me cooking even :)!I wud coax him to tell me the story of his childhood and he wud willingly accept to narrate the incidents of his childhood to me umpteen number of times without getting tired of it.He wud listen to my endless ranting and answer each and every single question that I ask.He wud blackmail me saying that if I had my bath early in the morning he wud allow me to enter the puja room and have Prasad and I wud always manage to sneak in and have the Prasad without bath.And he wud behave as if he could never make out tht I had sneaked in and finished the Prasad.I wud ask him “what do u do with the Prasad when I am not around Puuo”…and he wud reply “feed it to the sparrows so that they take it to u in their beaks”!!And I wud keep searching for sparrows at my place for the Prasad.He wud say “Grow up soon dear I am getting old”…and I wud reply “Don’t worry Puuo I ll grow up soon and we will both get old together”.
Days passed and distances grew.I got tied up with studies and cud manage to meet him only once in a yr.He wud complain “U call me puuo and don’t care for ur puuo.U simply disappear”….I wud reply “No JJ!!Me really tied up.I need to secure a seat JJ.After that I promise I ll always be with u”…..he replied “Fine!!I will get it for u…will u be happy then and not worry”….It sounded like those days in my childhood when I used to cry for toys and he wud say “Fine now don’t cry I will get u toys from my secret trunk…ll u be happy then”……and I wud forget all abt the toys and secretly sit down to ransack the secret trunk when my grandfather was not around. My puuo couldn’t see me worried ever.Whenever I wud get worried abt my results my puuo wud motivate me by narrating his experience and the way he had pursued his dreams by making it to Stanford University and completed his Phd .He had taught me pursuing ur dreams is all that matters ….don’t worry abt the results…just never give up. Tears filled his eyes when I had gifted him a dhoti and kurta with my first salary.He put away the dhoti and kurta in his secret trunk as usual :)!!I wud say “Puuo come and stay with me.Then we can have lot of fun” and his reply wud always be “No my dear just like that is ur house this is my house…ur Puuo is happy in his house…Next I ll go to God’s house from here”….And I wud retort “JJ!!Don’t talk nonsense.You had promised that we ll get old together”….”Yes my dear I remember my promise. We will get old together.U and I togther.That is why I made the prev. statement”.I never understood then what he meant.But today I understand the true meaning of his statement that he had made then.He had meant he wud always be there with me in my memories and we wud together get old.Isn’t that what u meant Puuo?? :)!
Life is so strange really….we are forced to accept the rules of nature.Much as we wud love to hold on to our dear ones we know that if we do so it will only get worse.Although its painful to depart from your loved ones u will have to console urself telling that its better if they are taken care of by God in his house than they withering away infront of ur eyes.U can’t pause time…u can’t stop age.And its also strange that when ur loved ones depart its only then that all the memories of the days that u spent together surfaces and u try clinging on to them like u never did before.U get so tied up with other responsibilities in ur life that although u know u love them dearly and they are there waiting impatiently to just catch a glimpse of u ….u just don’t have the time to be with them…and the memories just lie at the back of ur mind undisturbed….u don’t have the time to re-live them.So, that is what he had meant then that he can always stay in my memories and I will realise and relive the long lost childhood days with him all over again while he watches me do so from God’s abode…..and that’s how he will watch me getting old , sitting in the JJ chair , along with him :) !Hope you are keeping a secret trunk there too in God’s house Puuo.And I am sure this time God will make sure that ur secret trunk is not ransacked by any naughty kid around. And here I will take care of your favourite chair :)!

Friday, January 04, 2008


The latest addition to my small collection of business books is “Built to Last” by Jim Collins and Jerry Porras...a relatively old management classic.

This book , though full of jargons, proved to be a good read. Even its content-list is a collection of jargons….Clock building not time telling….No “tyranny of the Or” …more than profits…preserve the core…BHAGs….cult-like cultures….try a lot of stuff and keep what works…home grown management….good enough never is….the end of the beginning…building the vision…core ideologies….core competencies…etc.

The amount of research backing this book is stupendous and evident. The methodology followed is simple… “How are visionary companies different from comparison companies” …the definition of visionary and comparison are defined in the first chapter itself. Lots and lots of companies well-described…from the day one of their birth.

Jim Collins has beautifully described a visionary company as follows...just loved it...

Visionary company…A visionary company is like a great work of Art…Think of Michelangelo’s scenes from Genesis on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel or his statue of David. Think of a great and enduring novel, like Huckleberry Finn or Crime and Punishment. Think of Beethovan’s Ninth Symphony or Shakespeare’s Henry V. Think of a beautifully designed building like the masterpieces of Frank Lloyd Wright or Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. You cannot point to any one single item that makes the whole thing work; it’s the entire work – all the pieces working together to create an overall effect – that leads to enduring greatness. And it’s not just the big pieces, but also the itty-bitty details – the turn of phrase, the change of pace at just the right moment, the perfect offcenter placement of a window, a subtle expression sculpted into the eyes.