Rajeshwar Upadhyaya

He is the prof who took our Leadership Development Program classes and is planning to take an elective for us on “Leadership Lessons from World Literature” in Term 8 of our course. He is probably one of the most well read persons I have ever met till date in my stint on this planet.

All I want to say is “Prof. Upadhyaya: Thanks a ton for the wonderful LDP sessions you took for us. Hope to keep getting more opportunities to learn from you in the future too.”

To read an article written on him last year in rediff.com, click here .

3/8th of the road covered

3 out of 8 terms over.

Gave the last two exams of the term today – Corporate Finance (taught by PBC ….. here comes the PBC talk again) and Entrepreneurship. Corp fin paper was multiple choice except for the last question. Lack of opportunity to write much in the exam (we had to just mark the answers) was compensated by the Entrepreneurship paper. It was an open book exam and we had been given a case yesterday evening to study individually. Questions in the exam were based on the case. The exam would be more of a torture for the person correcting our papers than for us coz people here have filled their answer sheets with all that they could find fillable. The TA who would be correcting the papers didn’t miss the opportunity to come to the exam hall and request people to have some pity on him. After getting deeply affected by his senti talk, some people even took additional answer booklets !! Whatever I have written could be written once more within the same one single booklet I used. Wrists and elbows are paining like anything after 3 hours of non-stop writing.

Am off to see the movie “Gandhi“. Have to finish the LDP assignment which is based on the movie by tomorrow midnight (or might be day after .. have to check) utilizing whatever little time I get, with the business presentation workshop happening parallely. I feel that being an engineer gives one the ability to finish assignments whatever/whenever be the deadline. Heard this one a few months ago …… apparently an engineer was given a bulky book to study and asked when he would be able to finish it …. he asked in return “exam kab hai (when is the exam)?”.

2 down, 2 more to go

Two exams of Term 3 over (managerial accounting & operations management). Needless to say, my record at ISB of commiting harakiri in the exams remains intact … …. yes, I did it this time too. Two more to go (Entrepreneurship and Corporate Finance) for the term to get over officially and for me to start doing the LDP assignment. Don’t feel like exams are going on … have somehow grown indifferent to exams, may be due to the high frequency of their occurence.

Thats it for today ….. ta … ta …

No term break this time ???

Exams tomorrow and day after. Then there is supposed to be a term break till Sunday but only for people who do not have their business presentation workshops and experiential learning projects (ELPs) lined up and I am not one of them :-( So the schedule goes like this: exams on Mon & Tue, the workshops on Wed & Thu, LDP assignment due on Thu, ELP till Sun and then Term 4 starts from Monday. Poor me …….

“I LIKE” slips

We had an additional session of LDP today where Prof. Rajeshwar Upadhyay taught us 6 steps which if pursued seriously can lead us to greatness. One of the steps involved writing in slips of paper, what you felt were good qualities in your fellow classmates and giving the slips to them. Here are some that I got in the slips given to me by others ….. every slip starts with something like “I like Ram because” and some go on to say the following:

“sense of humor … amazing duality – silent in class, brat outside”

“he is humorous”

“he is funny”

“too funny”

“silent class participation (CP)”

“calm and quiet nature”

“the serenity with which he sleeps in class”

“you are a really great person to be with, always spreading smiles and happiness around”

“he is always cheerful and can really cheer people up”

“for his ever jovial nature and full of life attitude”

“very helpful guy”

“you are chilled out ….. laid back ….. funny as hell”

“of his exceptional capability to create humor and gel into any gathering”

“sleeping partner from the first term … great guy … always cheerful”

“I like his funniness”

“for his writing skills on his blog and for his sense of humor” (writing skills ???)

“very friendly and has an easy attitude towards life”

“humor, humor , humor again !!”

“cheerful personality”

“very accessible, has a jolly nature”

“real silent performer … has substance & it comes out at rare occasions when he does speak … nice guy”

………..

One thing common to almost all slips was “he is too funny” or “he is too humorous”.

Last class of Term 3

We had the last two classes of Term 3 today – Entrepreneurship by Prof. Ramakrishna Velamuri and Operations Management by Prof. Sudhakar Deshmukh. For more details on the profs who taught us this term, please click here (an earlier post of mine).

One thing that struck me was that the profs who have come till now from Kellogg are very down to earth and gentle people. Prof Mark Finn (Financial Accounting – Term1), Prof. Sri Sridharan (Managerial Accounting – Term 3) and Prof. Sudhakar Deshmukh (Operations Management – Term 3) are all so gentle that they wouldn’t hurt a fly. Prof Deshmukh, probably the cutest/sweetest of them all, has been teaching at Kellogg for 34 years now !!! Thats 7 years more than the average age of our batch and much more than the time most of my batchmates have spent on this planet.

The profs who came in to take the first half of the courses this term were on the average more impressive than the ones who took the second half. Prof S. Venkatraman from Darden who took first 6 of our Entrepreneurship classes was very impressive and I learnt a lot from his portion of the course. Prof Venkatraman started his teaching career in 1984-85. I was really surprised to know that he was the guy who wrote the business plan for Wipro Technologies way back when it was started and was one of the founding employees of the company. So many students of his are successful entrepreneurs in the US.

Prof Ramakrishna Velamuri, who taught the next 4 classes had a style of his own. I personally felt that his case studies were more of reading stories than learning any serious new stuff about Entrepreneurship. We had a case study on Alacrity Housing, Chennai and he brought in the founder of Alacrity, Amol Karnad to class for discussing the case study. He did the same thing in the next case on Infosys Technologies too when he brought the head of Infosys, Hyderabad to class for the discussion.

I have already talked a lot about PBC in my earlier posts and would refrain from doing so now …. hmm … well …. let me just mention this … PBC told us during our finance electives information session that we should consider our MBA over by the next term and we should think of the remaining 4 terms after that as a golden opportunity to put to practice whatever we learnt in the first 4 core terms.

Exam time once again …. end terms scheduled for the coming Monday and Tuesday. Probably the longest exams we will give over a span of two days, ever since we came here. Almost all the exams are of 3 hour duration.

There is a fight going on between my brain and the rest of my body right now …. some voice from inside says that exams are round the corner and I better study something and it appears the logical thing to do to my brain too … but all other organs in the body say that they are damn tired and my eyes are almost closing. The warm, cozy bed beckons me …. here I come …. zzzzzz

D-Day

No .. no … I am not refering to Normandy or the Second World War. We had our “Section D” day today. Our section T-shirts have arrived and they do look cool. Here are some snaps ….

Section T-shirt (back portion)

Close up view of the back of the T-shirt ….. contains names of all the students.

Prof. Rajeshwar Upadhyay, Prof. Ramakrishna Velamuri & Prof. Sri Sridharan (L to R)

Summary of a different kind

Got this from a batchmate of ours …… summary of one of the chapters of our Corporate Finanace textbook has the following – “This chapter is almost 100 percent theory. The theory is difficult. If you think you understand all the formulas, assumptions, and relationships on the first reading, we suggest psychiatric assistance”.

End-term exams are on Monday. Thats how life is at ISB. Exams almost every 2-3 weeks (mid-term or end-term). This term is going to be a disaster for me … there is so much to study and so little motivation right now to do so. All right … I better get done with at least the case to be read for class today.

ISB related programmes on TV

TV9 channel (which I think at least comes in the whole of AP) aired a story on ISB today in a program titled “Young Tarang” from 8:30PM to 9:30PM. Those who missed it can catch ‘Life at ISB’ next Monday ( August 29,2005) – same channel, same time.

Moving on to other things …… the Leadership Development Program (LDP) classes have been going on well. The faculty, Prof Rajeshwar Upadhyay, in my opinion, is an awesome speaker and I am truly impressed by whatever he is teaching us. We have also been seeing clips out of some movies and doing analysis based on them. Two movies that we have seen (partially) till now in this regard are “Saving Private Ryan” and Ram Gopal Verma’s “Satya” (remember Bhiku Mhatre ??). Satya is one of my favorite movies, though I have seen it only once before and I had thought a lot about the movie and its characters back then. Same with “Company“. But I had never known that even the “kallu mama” song in Satya had so much meaning behind each of those lines. Realized this only after attending the LDP class yesterday !!!

Weekends @ ISB

All weekends@ ISB are almost of the same kind. Be it rains, sunshine, exams, no exams, term breaks, no term breaks, assignments will always be there. Number of assignments will be 3 with a standard deviation of 3 with 100% confidence ….. the only thing is that it very rarely might fall bellow three. Ooops … what is happening to me …. when did I start talking like this?

This weekend is no exception. The closer we are to the exams, which I am reminded are coming up next week, the more is the burden of assignments felt (as we are doing just now). There are some who start doing the assignments (to be submitted on Monday morning 8:30AM) on Thursday or Friday itself and there are many who start it only on Saturday or Sunday. It then becomes a race against time but then we have somehow always performed better when democles sword is hanging above our heads.

Whatever I am writing is somehow not making sense to me …. have already done overtime .. I mean its almost midnight and I sleep very early usually …. signing off to bury myself in my warm, cozy bed …. see you tomorrow ….

zzzzzz ….