Nominated for Best of Blogging 2008-09

April has been a month of surprises and events for me. I joined the Indian School of Business (ISB) on 11th April and began my MBA. As many have heard, an MBA can be too hectic. So I wanted to enjoy my share of free time before starting the stressful year. I traveled to Goa and got tanned on the beaches. Then I went further down in Kerala (God's Own Country) and visit the tea estates of Munnar and the back waters in Alleppey. It was indeed a holiday well spent and got me ready for the MBA.

2 days ago when I got my laptop back from the local IT guys from ISB, after they made sure that my laptop is ready to use here, I got another pleasant surprise. I have been nominated by Clear Admit for their Best of Blogging Awards 2008-09. I feel honored and motivated at the same time to update my blog more often.

For those who do not know, Clear Admit is an admissions consulting company that also have an MBA Admissions Blog that helps share information by other applicants and current students. In addition, they also keep updated on various activities happening in B-schools all over the world.

I really feel elated and proud. This goes out to all my readers who are my real motivation. I wish to keep updating my blog on application process and life at ISB.

Last day at ISB - Graduation Day '09

Today, 4th of April, 2009, was the Graduation Day at the Indian School of Business (ISB) for the class of 2009. Today also marked my last day at ISB as a spouse. Today, my wife, became an MBA, an ISM alumnus and my senior.

Today the campus was abuzz with high activity. Families have arrived on campus to attend the Graduation Day, people are busy packing their stuff as most would be leaving ISB in a day or two. Coming back to the G-day.

The Chief Guest of the evening was Arun Sarin, ex-CEO of Vodafone. The other distinguished guests were Rajat Gupta, chairman ISB and ex-McKinsey head and Dipak Jain, dean, Kellogg School of Management. The evening started with a speech by Ajit Rangnekar, current dean of ISB. He talked about what ISB has achieved in the 8 years of its existence, what ISB is all about and what ISB plans to achieve in the short and long term.

His speech was followed by the guest of honor, Arun Sarin. He talked at length about what leaders are, the importance of integrity in business, and what a dream job should be. Considering the gloomy placement scenario this year, he did motivate by asking the students to follow their dream and not just run after 'any' job. He also mentioned that luck is definitely a factor in your life. While everybody knew that they will get a job soon, it was good to hear it from someone and of course, a boost is required.

After Arun Sarin, came Rajat Gupta. Although he too talked about the same motivational thought leadership stuff, but he accompanied that with his story. Let me share it with you. He went to Harvard Business School right after undergrad from IIT. But the year he graduated was in the middle of an economic slowdown, so jobs for student visa holders were less. Since he was there with 0 experience, hardly any company offered him any interview. He heard from McKinsey, did 2 interviews with them but then was turned down because he had no experience. After a while, at a chat with one of his profs, he came to know that his prof was the McKinsey interviewer's past colleague. On knowing that Rajat did not get an offer, the prof wrote to McKinsey, asking them to interview Rajat, recommending him and thus Rajat secured a job with McKinsey. Rest everybody knows. It was quite motivational.

This was followed by the awards/certificate distribution ceremony.

At the end, Kellogg dean Dipak Jain came to speak. He also serves on the board of ISB. I must say his speech was the stealer of the night. I have never heard such an influential speaker in my life who can grab the attention of audience of all ages. He impressed not just me, not just hte students, but everyone sitting there including the parents. That man, is so humble that you will never feel small. He will connect with you and make you feel empowered. He shared with us stories of life and that was what made us connect with him. While talking about the economic recession, he also touched upon the luck aspect but accompanied with an analogy.

He said life is like a game of playing cards. You can get very bad cards every time they are dealt. But, if you know how to play them, you cna be a winner. A person with very good cards can also lose. So just know how to play your cards and you will do well in life. Moreover, talking about the mood of students which was obviously not very good, considering the placements, he gave another hit.

He said humans should follow the refrigerator principle in life. If things are kept cool, they stay fresh for a longer period of time.

Isnt that the ultimate mood booster? With that the ceremony came to an end and everybody had photo sessions and a sumptuous dinner.

It was not over yet. A late night party continues and is going on as I write. This party is required my everyone to say the final goodbyes. Tomorrow, I am also leaving the campus and will return when there will all be new faces to make new friends. I will go now to say my goodbye to the friends I have made over the year. ISB is just not a good school by itself; it is made good by its people, who are amazing. I am sure the next batch, my classmates are amazing too.

It is 1 am and I am off to the party now.