Thursday, June 29, 2006

KPMG Head talks about ISB

In an interview on the Australian Radio, the KPMG head Mr. Edge Zarrella discusses the future of Australian Economy. The problem in Australia is that they have reduced unemployment rate to such low levels, that now there is a shortage for skilled labor. Mr. Edge Zarrella was here at ISB for a talk with ISBians. He mentions ISB in this interview in relevance to his plans for KPMG in the future.

Here is a transcript of the interview

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

IT 100

Business Week's list of top 100 IT companies (in the world) for the year 2005 is out.
Some observations
* Bharti Airtel ranks No. 8 in the top 100 just behind Nokia.. and ahead of the likes of Google (12th), Motorola(11th) etc.
* Seagate Technology (the last company I worked with) ranks 19th.
* CTS ranks 8th in the fastest revenue growth list.
* TCS ranks 9th in the most profitable (return on equity) list.

Looks like the Indian companies are starting to appear on the map. Overall, this year has been good for most of the emerging market cell-phone companies.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Google @ ISB

Today we had Prasenjit Phukan, Sr. Product Manager of Google visit ISB. He gave us a talk about Google and their plans for India. An ISB alum, Ravi who is an Operations Manager there accompanied him. Apparantly Google India is looking for a few Product Development managers of good calibre. I had the opportunity to have dinner with him along with a few other Google interested people. We had a good chat session with him over dinner pitching forward some ideas and areas where Google can grow and stuff. From what he says, Google India seems like an interesting place to work. Previously, I wouldn't have thought of applying to Google in the placement season. But, I think I have changed my mind now. Since, I have been interested only in Tech Product Development roles, and Google India is now looking for Product Development Managers, I think I might actually fall on their radar with my product focussed background at Seagate. Maybe my M.S. can also fetch me a few brownie points here. Let's see.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Mumbai Dabbawalas @ ISB

The Mumbai Dabbawalas were here at ISB to give us a guest lecture on their practices. For those people who don't know what is so special about these people..

* Mumbai Dabbawalas are unique in their way of delivering lunch boxes to different locations across the city. According to a recent survey, there is only one error in every six million deliveries. That's a 0.17 DPPM!! And all this without the use of ANY technology.
* The Mumbai Dabbawalas also have the distinction of setting a record for Best Time Management with the Guinness Book of World Records.

Here is an article about this event which appeared on the Times of India.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Come Back Kids

YEAH! That's the new name for my group. We bounced back from the horrible performance in round 1 of Markstrat. We've jumped up from the bottom of the rung 18th place to 13th place across industries at the end of round 2 with some SOLID performance. In Marketing terms, on the BCG matrix, my firm now have two fat cash cows. Now, we have to look to get some star products in place.
Group E who screwed us in the first round, have done well again. They've moved from strength to strength.
We turn in the decisions for round 3 tomorrow morning 8.00am. We plan to protect our cash cows and milk them enough to get some star products in place. My gut feeling however says that the big fat cows will become a little lean this time. We are spreading our bets out and hence stretching our resources. Having said that, I think we have a small star in hand. Let us see how it goes.
Out for the night! Two gruelling days of Leadership Development Program in store for us over the weekend. Presentation skills improvement. It is going to be a big strain considering that this is the last weekend before the mid-term and realistically the only good time to prepare for the mid-term.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Steve Balmer selling Windows 1.0

A classic piece!

Found it on Kiruba's blog

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Photography Club

The Photography Club kick started last weekend. We had a good session with Mr.Gunshe Ramchandani from PhotoCafe, a well known studio here in Hyderabad. This was the first talk in the series. We took a look at some interesting effects captured on camera. We also learnt about the "rule of the thirds" and the different kind of lighting.

Here are some pictures from the session.

The president of the club was the Chosen One, for elucidating the different types of lighting :-).
Demonstration of soft lighting and reflective lighting.

Demonstration of high noon lighting.

One of the spouses was a good sport and volunteered to pose for all of us to shoot pictures at this location picked by the instructor to illustrate composition and framing.

This picture is an attempt at the background blur effect on someone finger.

Monday, June 19, 2006

The Lost Temples of India (Documentary)

A brilliant documentary ! For people who haven't visited the South Indian Temples, hopefully this will be a good eye-opener!

The Lost Temples of India

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After 12 hours of slogging it out and turning in decisions, we returned home to sleep.
2 days later (after one brilliant Arabic Theme party at SV3), I wake up to the results of the markets reacting to all our decisions.

End results : WE GOT SCREWED.

Something we did is made us lose market share. We dropped from the largest market share before our decision, to the lowest market share. Now, we have to do some damage control.

Some pictures taken at 4.00a.m. after my group's decision was done and we went to bug Chetan's group.

This was them making their decisions peacefully before we went there.

This was them, after we landed.

p.s. For some reason, I think the umbrellas reminded Sam of a beach, and hence the "Beach Boy" pose in the last picture!!

Friday, June 16, 2006


This term, we use one of the most exciting learning tools ever made in the history of B-Schools. Markstrat! Markstrat is a simulation environment in which many firms will compete to maximize their profits. We will be using this software as part of our advanced Marketing course. The entire batch has been split into groups of 4 or 5 and 18 "parallel" play industries have been created. 5 firms A, E, I, O and U compete in each of these parallel worlds. Each firm holds a different market position like in a real world. One will be a market leader, one will be a close second, one might be a player catering to a niche requirement, etc. We compete over a period of 8 years. At the beginning of each year we are expected to make a marketing decision and we will see the result of our decisions (w.r.t. those made by our opponents) at the end of the year. Various factors are in our control. We can invest in R&D, we decide how much to produce, we control inventory levels, we control the distribution channel, etc.
I love these sort of games where you get to lock horns with other humans. It is always a challenge and an extremely dynamic environment. It definitely beats playing against a computer. I have been looking forward to play this game for quite some time now. Supposed to be one of the most exciting (and also hectic) periods during the MBA program. In our case, we have the first decision for all the groups has already been made by the professor. We now take over and make the next 7 decisions. This "game" accounts for 40% of the grade, which makes it even more interesting. Our first Markstrat decision is due tomorrow morning. I think tonight will be a looong night, considering we are still learning about the industry we're competing in, our own strenghts and weaknesses and we still have to learn about our opponents.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Interesting Tech articles..

Guest lectures this week.

We had a guest lecture today by Deepak Jolly, VP of Coca Cola, India. It was interesting considering that I'd just prepared for the case study on the Cola Wars just yesterday. Mr. Deepak Jolly was working with Pepsi before he moved to Coca Cola. This made things even more interesting. Everyone's knowledge about the Cola Wars ensured maximum attendance and I was pleasantly surprised to find the Khemka auditorium full.

We have another guest lecture lined up for tomorrow. This time its Professor Stuart L Hart.
Prof. Stuart Hart is the S.C. Johnson Chair of Sustainable Global Enterprise and professor of management at Cornell University’s Johnson School of Management. Apparantly he has published more than 50 papers and has also co-authored the book "The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid". He's considered a pioneer in the field of corporate sustainablity. This lecture should be very interesting and I"m looking forward to attending it.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Term 2 starts.

The term break came and went. And here we are already in Term 2. Today the classes started off with Competitive Strategy (a.k.a Comp Strat). We discussed the Cola Wars Case today. Coke Vs. Pepsi. Somewhere in the introduction to the course, they'd mentioned that the best way to stimulate interest has been proven to be Case Studies. I couldn't agree more. I loved reading for it. We had some analogies from Dell and their low-cost model. This course has 25% of the grade allocated to Class Participation (CP). So, as expected, there were a lots of raised hands in class and quite a lively discussion. I participated a fair amount I would say, so, hopefully I scored some brownie points. Arbit CP wasn't that high thankfully!

Today was also Red n Blue day for our section. It was fun to see the dining hall dotted with Red all over. Some pictures from the class. Oh.. and the class seating also changed today. I have new neighbours :-).

Friday, June 09, 2006


Here I am. Done with my exams and relaxing for 4 days. No particular agenda. Woke up at 8.15am, worked out for an hour, had breakfast. Slept. Woke up, had lunch. Slept.

AND THEN! One of my friends here at ISB comes online from Bangalore (she's gone back for the break). I don't think I can sleep anymore after this conversation!

S.T: know what i got the global eco book home....thought i wud die of guilt of not studying while u ppl are !!! anyways was flipping pages and came across an article
S.T.: which talked abt palm meadows...blr...thats where i stay
S.T.: so was mighty kicked!

Me: well, wait till the whole world hears about this

S.T.: oh come on!!! i really dont care what u tell to the world!!!

Me: good good

S.T.: u shud check that article out...its got photo and all too!

God save me in the next term!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

I Know What I'll Get Next Summer!

I"m going to get myself one of these..

Live! Motion Creative Webcam

Not bad at all for 100$! A camera which can rotate/adjust height and face track. This one is designed to sit on CRT Monitors as well as Laptops/Flat Panels!

Monday, June 05, 2006

ISB on Business World!

Cool! Hot after ISB being invited to join the Graduate Management Admission Council (GMAC) which conducts the GMAT tests, BW makes a mention of ISB on their rankings for highest average GMAT scores among the top B-Schools in the world.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Impressed with INFY

Was going through Ram's blog and he has this link to a Flickr photo stream on INFY Development Centers. This is the first time I've seen pictures of any INFY campus. WOW. I'm sure these pics are professionaly taken. But still, I'm surprised by the truly world class campus! A lot sure has changed in the 5 years I've not been in India.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Photostream from Rajni & Shankar's Sivaji

Thought I'm a hard-core Rajnikanth fan (Rajni of the yester years), I'm not sure if I really enjoy watching him now. He was a disaster in Baba and Chandramukhi. I hope Shankar is a little more sensible in casting him in a role his age. Else, I might just throw up!

The photostream is from the shooting currently happening at Spain. Shriya DOES look hot!

Edit : Got some more video links. Thanks FSN.

Clip 1

Clip 2

Clip 3

Last Week of Term 1

Wow! Sujayath really was very accurate when he said that it was an MBA @ the speed of light! We're already into the last week of Term 1. I have my finals on Monday and Tuesday. Back to back, 2 exams on each day. For some reason, I am not feeling as serious as I should be! I guess when the flood water's have risen well above my head, it doesn't really matter if I'm 100 feet under water or 10000 feet under water. I'm still sunk! My only aim is to stay performing above average.

It's about 12.55am and I just got back from a group assignment submission. This is now becoming a very regular feature though. I need to be up and running again by tomorrow morning 7.30am. My last two classes for the term are tomorrow.

Prof. Jagmohan Raju wound up with his Marketing class today. He and Prof. Stine (who handled Statistics) were my favourite professors for the term. Brilliant stuff! Prof. Raju will also be handling Marketing 2 next term. I'm really looking forward to his classes (though I dread his cold calls for CP!).

Alright, now for another hour of studying before I hit the bed.