Sunday, April 27, 2014

First MBA Additional book Reads - The Goal

From the first day in the class, one of the things that the college faculties has been trying to tell us is that knowledge is important. It is not only about the mugging up the books or  getting good placements or getting high grades. Rather it is important to approach the one year MBA at IIM Lucknow with the aim to get knowledge. The challenges in real life as a manager are plenty. It is in this one year that we have to master those challenges of managerial world by gaining knowledge.  Hence at different times the professors in our class are suggesting interesting readings.  In this series i will be sharing some of these books which i have reads. This books are additional readings apart from the main text book and reference book given in the course syllabus.

The book 'The goal' was suggested to us by the professor who takes the Operation Management (OM) class. He claims to have read it multiple times and he still gets new insights when reads again. So i decided to take this book as the first one, since OM has lot of information related to production industry and i come from services industry.

On completing this book, i realized that all problems in this world have a simplified solution. We just need to simplify the problem in simple terms as much as possible so that we can understand it and then try to attack the problems/constraints/bottlenecks one by one to achieve the ultimate goal of any organization. Wondering what is the goal? Well it is making money. This book gives insights on how management thinking around the world can be changed and no doubt is one of the best selling book of business world.

Since the book is written in novel style, i was enriched and at the same time not much overloaded as i was becoming when i read the text book.this book has nicely depicted on how a plant manager saves his plant from getting closed by using the spark of thoughts provided school professor. he solves his professional and personal problems by
  1.   identify the constraints standing in the way of attaining goal
  2.   how this constraints are overcome one by one by analyzing the cause and effects of the action
  3.   how he made this team think logically and consistently about the problems

In the end things are happily resolved for the plant manager. i am happy to open my additional reading account and the same time get acquainted with new stuff. Next book that i plan to read is 'Emotional Intelligence by Daniel Goleman'

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Though it is below surface , most learning happens here : Unconscious mind

Today i was fortunate to get enlightened on the concept of 'foundation of marketing strategy by understanding consumers". The lecture was delivered by Jerry Olson Professor Emeritus, who is the
is a founding partner of Olson Zaltman Associates and Professor Emeritus of Marketing at Penn State University.

One of the unique things that i learned from the professor is that human unconscious mind hold so much information, that this information can help firms make and decide on competitive strategy. In marketing deep insights are needed. This insights are captured from the sampled people by giving them set of images and then they are asked some generic questions.

Based on the response a pattern is tried to be built using the patented ZMET tools and other methods. Interesting as it sounds, future managers of my class were enthusiastics in throwing diverse question to the professor whose model is one of the most successful. Though the competitors are trying to replicate the model, they are not yet been successful in replicating the exact model. 

The word that probably i will research more in coming days is metaphorsis analysis and how if it can be used to modify my questinaire in some of the upcoming projects. Overall the session left us inqistive and we hoped we had got more time to spend with the professor. 

The case studies on how one company rebranded its marketing strategy just before the product launch based on the results of prof olson and his team OR how the architects of hospital redesigned the ambience to make their comfortable place are perfect examples of some of the successful outcome of this models. Having worked with most of the biggest brands using the expertise of associates/partners from across the globe, the professor and his team are doing a great job in extracting deep marketing insigts for the industry.

Once the results are out from the research, they look simple. However it is due to this patented framework that most research have been able to meet its desired outcome and prove its usage across different verticals of industry. Wikipedia has a nice read on ZMET methodlogy at

You can also see the work done by the professors company at

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Beyond the MBA Hype - An insightful book

Book Review On Beyond the MBA Hype

MBA was the dream of mine. Like the other applicants I too had‘what-if’ queries into my mind. Whether pursuing MBA would really work or it would be just waste my money and also waste my productive life time. So I started searching for the things to know how the things revolve around the person when he is an MBA, when he is at MBA and when he is after MBA. There were very positive and negative answers all around. I also started to discuss at MBA forums. Everything was clear but still there was one question at heart, can I make up the MBA? During my discussion process I had figured out a book named as “Beyond the MBA hype” by Sameer Kamat.

Before I start to review this book, Let me introduced the author Mr. Sameer Kamat. He was working as an engagement manager at IBM. Despite his high designation and high salary, he had a lacking in his mind that was MBA.

There was much confusion in his mind regarding MBA. After research he decided to do MBA and he chose the University of Cambridge. Now he says that his took the right decision. So this book is dedicated to those people who are in the similar dilemma as Sameer was. I have passed the first phase and pursuing my MBA now from IIM lucknow.

This book helps the people to solve up their queries regarding the MBA and achieve their goal. The writer deals with the challenges and confusion that the applicants should able to handle when opting MBA programme. I can say this book is same as a little hand book that we used to have in our primary and secondary school.

Since we already know Mr. Kamat has done his MBA , he talks about challenges. He says that there were many active challenges related  to pursuing an MBA. But some challenges are such that nothing needs to done about it.

This book stats with the introduction and statistics of colleges, student. Then another thing highlighted is comparison between international and Indian MBA. The next chapter talks about a simple question “Why Go for an MBA?” with lovely story of two friends’ sachin and mitu.  How a friend motivates his other friend to pursue a MBA programme. And thus story continues on every new content.

Next content is the application process. This encourages the student to apply for an MBA, deals with how one can build up his MBA profile. The techniques of lectures, case studies, individual projects, group assignments, guest lectures and industry tours are also talked about.

Further comes the skill gap which causes obstruction and the ways to overcome it. Networking is one effective tool in corporate world especially during critical job hunting phase. Internship might help you to get best of best opportunities that might be of your interest from long term career perspective. Lastly book tells about career hunt and career change. In the whole process, the author gives close look of the academic life and also the tremendous issues faced by applicants on pursuing a seat in B-schools.

Really this book has laid out various issues and tells the students what to do and what not to do. I myself was in big dilemma when I had started my hunt for MBA. To conclude, I can say that this book is worth a read and going forward I have decided to share this book with my colleagues/friends who are MBA aspirants so that they can have a better future of their life. So friends grab one copy for yourself, read it and leave your comments below.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Nervousness before the start

As i am about to start my one year MBA program,  i am nervous about its start but mentally prepared to take up the challenge. My first article is live on #financial #times #ft #mba blog.

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