Sunday, January 28, 2007

Placement Prep - The buzz on campus.

Everyone is seriously into their preparations for placement week. The whole campus is buzzing with groups meeting up to prepare for some common interest fields. Mock interviews, mock group discussions, mock day 1 (where you have 8-9 interviews in a single day), mock me, mock you.. its all happening here on campus :-).
I am part of 3 different preparation groups each geared to a different concentration. However, I don't feel like I"m doing justice to anything :-).

3 weeks to go for placement week. Lots of people are nervous. Lots of people are having sleepless nights. Lots of people are cursing themselves for doing 4 courses this term.

I'm just lazing around. Watched 3 movies over the last 2 days. I haven't done any serious preparation or anything yet. I've revised like 3 chapters from one of the easiest core-term subjects. Others have revised every core-term subject 3 times. I get a good 8 hours of sleep every day.

However, I haven't been totally useless. I've been going to the gym regularly these days. Spend about 1.5 hours everyday. I've started running again to fit back into my suit which I just before I got here to ISB. I've gained close to 7kgs since I got here to ISB. Sarovar feeds us unadulterated pure fat! I also got my suit dry cleaned. Gave myself 2 brownie points for doing that before everyone else did. So, a little content with myself.

Now to go eat and go to catch up with that 9th hour of sleep I didn't get last night!


Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Ganguly.. and inflation.

Ganguly's back for a while in the team from the looks of it. Finally, he is a playing/contributing member in the team and its great to see that. Hopefully he'll keep up his contributing spirit.. and not just wane away as a 2 series come back wonder. His 90+ score was a good knock. It was great to say everyone finally contribute in the batting lineup and a good score put up on the board. But what's with the 4 dropped catches?? Catches win matches no doubt! If we played like this in the world-cup, well, we'll be walking home real soon. No space in the finals. Buck up Dravid and team! No excuses of "senior members" not being agile.

On an unrelated note.. inflation in India is at an all time high. 6.10+ if I remember right. This is a typical case of the economy "over-heating". The WPI (wholesale price index) and Consumer good price index are all going up, contributing to the high inflation. What can the reserve bank do? Well, as usual they'll hike the repo rate, try to reduce the money circulating in the Indian financial system, thereby indirectly raising the value of the money as compared to the goods being sold. In theory, this should contain the inflation. Well, the RBI has been hiking the rates for the last two years, and nothing has happened. Looks like the problems are much bigger. There is a severe supply problem for skilled labour. The demand is very high for skilled labour. So, what happens.. companies start hiking up pay to attract best available labour. Upward spiral in salaries till this skill shortage is dealt with. Ofcourse, the increasing salary costs are reflected in the prices of goods and services made. If my salary component of cost of my business goes up.. and there's pressure on my profit margins.. heck I'm going to raise the prices of whatever services/products I offer to maintain my margins. Business 101 fundamentals!
So, I guess thats where there Government will try and do something. Crank up the produce of skilled labour. Right now the economy is overheating with the rapidly increasing number of businesses coming to India. Huge increase in demand for skilled labour. It's at levels India is not equipped to handle. So the Government will try and slow things down a little (on the booming business side).. till the supply of skilled labour can catch up. I hear that the Indian Government is looking for foreign partnerships in creating educational institutions to churn out more skilled labour. That should ease some pressure off this problem.
With organized retail coming in now, the inflation figures will pull down a little. Prices of goods usually drop when organized retail kicks in. Lets see how the future pans out!


Saturday, January 20, 2007

Mock Interview & later..

Well.. Google dinged me. Not surprising. I sort of expected it at the end of the interviews I guess. I didn't get a good feel for the interviewer and so I guess they didn't get a good feel for me either. I also realized how much more I need to put into my interview preparation during the interview. Sigh. Miles to go before I sleep.. Miles to go before I sleep. Well, now to try and join some of Google's competition and kick some butt from there!

We had a mock interview session conducted by the placement cell. The session further drove home the point of me needing to prepare much better. The next 1 month is going to be crucial. Need to brush up all my core-term courses also.

If I were to give any advice to the next batch students, PLEASE make sure you write a one pager for every core-term subject highlighting the key take-aways from the subject. It would've come really handy now during the placement season if I had done that!

ZS Associates was here for their pre-placement talks today. Pretty impressive stuff.


Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Shortlists start flowing in..

So, the top two consulting firms release their shortlists. The top company actually picked 19 non-deans listers out of their 41 long shortlist. Pretty healthy ratio I would say. The other company ofcourse, picked mostly dean's listers. Glad to see that they stuck by their word of not picking only the dean's listers especially when a lot of people here have proved beyond doubt that they add value on another diverse scale.

I wish all those shortlisted very good luck. Looking forward to you guys getting into these big big consulting firms. And then.. hehehe.. hopefully I'll hire you guys one day.. and give you a lot of shit!

Just kidding.

Lot of excitement on campus about the coming recruiting season. Lots of people excited about being shortlisted. Others are disappointed at not making it to the short list. Today, Microsoft held their PPT. They have some roles that I'd be interested in applying for. Let see what the future holds for me :-)


Monday, January 15, 2007

Kite Flying @ ISB

Happy Pongal/Mahara Sankranti/Lohri to everyone!

We flew kites as part of the tradition. Was great fun! My kite though crash landed thanks to VK. Tch tch tch. Well, I just switched to photo shooting mode once I was done with the kite flying. It felt good to give my camera/lenses a workout in broad daylight!

Some pictures from the day. More on my flickr stream.

Last picture courtesy Doc!


Friday, January 12, 2007

Placement season gets underway..

Lots of companies coming. There are almost 3-4 pre-placement talks everyday these days. It is going to be very interesting.
Tesco was here today giving their pre-placement talks. They offered a very interesting position in the International Operations group. Looks like a great place to be. Very good compensation. But a lot of travel looks like. And here's the interesting part about their recruitment procedure. It'll probably be based on a test/exam. I think it will be some sort of a psychometric test. Not sure. But, it sure is different from the run of the mill case based interviews.
I'm quite sure there will be a lot of people applying for this position.

I missed the Cisco pre-placement talk session today. Sigh, need to find the video and watch it to know more about the roles offered now.


Wednesday, January 10, 2007

I'm in love..

with the new iPod Phone.

I've never been more impressed with Apple. People have been talking about cell-phone and Mp3 player convergence. Apple has actually executed.. and has done an awesome job at it!

Read a detailed account of the Macworld conference here.


Monday, January 08, 2007

A new mp3 player from Kenwood

Ah.. visual and audio pleasure.

Finally a player to match the iPod in looks.. and beat even the Creatives in sound quality.

This player has the new Kenwood Clear Digital Amplifier technology which supposedly produces the best sound among all mp3 players.

Worth a look! Read more about it here and here.


Sunday, January 07, 2007

Avalanche in Colorado!

My friends GB and JS were travelling to Winter Park and they missed this avalanche by 3 min. GB sure thanks his stars for hitting the snooze button in the morning! A huge avalanche near the Berthoud pass swept cars off the US-40 highway and sent them spinning down the steep slopes almost 300 feet. The avalanche also buried the cars and everything in its path under 15 feet of snow almost.

Everyone associates driving in the mountains and going to the ski resorts through high country and passes with a lot of beauty and thrills. I have always felt nervous especially when driving through one of those passes. These passes usually get a LOT more snow than the rest of the mountain ranges because of the altitude they are in. Throughout the year barring peak summer, these passes always get snow. So, when we hear about the blizzard that hit Denver and neighboring areas which dumped about 3 feet of snow, then you can only imagine how much snow the passes must've got overnight. When one of the ledges of snow near the peaks give way when the sun shines later, its avalanche time!

Don't forget to check out the video footage of the avalanche posted in that article on CNN!

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