Show Me a Deal Will Ya?

I happened to come across this shopping site called Singdeals, a few days back. What I like about the site is the fact that it seems to be providing an unbiased shoping experience of what are the deals available. The problem with other major e-retailers is that they seem to showcase only that part of the inventory where they have major deals. Indiaplaza seems to have a great site, but if they fail somewhere its in the fact that they dont seem to have user reviews for most of their products, and this is where Singdeals aims to plug in the gap by being a mouthshut meets Indiaplaza.

Comparison shopping is also a major service they provide, and the most interesting part is that they are not selling, but providing links to sellers with discounts, and that would have a lot of win-win from the retailers who would want to sell their products.In a way, there seems to be some hedging done, by not being an end retail player like Indiaplaza, but they sure have one happy customer, who's writing this blog. I have noticed a couple of unsung heroes on the web segment, which are gaining promonence slowly, and I will write about them in the coming week.

Right now do let me know what you think of this site, which I feel is gaining a lot of prominence.Its pretty neat and nifty and the whole model of "Only Comparison" shopping really looks cool

First Impression is not the Best Impression

The din of the classroom and the B school as such sometimes makes you out of sync with the real world, as it can get really sapping doing multitasking and then discovering that the draft you worked 3 nights was a piece of crap. B school education gives you enough oppurtunities to discover from dissapointments and failures. Failures and non performance are things my life has learnt to tolerate as an unwelcome visitor.Its when the visior stays a little longer that frustration rebels inside you.It is this frustration that shows the "real mature you".

It is how you react when the world is against you is what builds your character shows how deep your skills to counter failure are. Since I have been there and done that a hajaar times, I rarely make a particular failure affect me,but seeing people around me react badly to failure is where I observe that some people are just not made for management. The first impression is far removed from the most recent impression.

Whoever said, the first impression was the best impression, probably did not have management education in mind, as the amount of transformation one undergoes over a period of time, gives different impressions whose sum total is almost always different from the faked first impression.

Some food for thought? Would love to hear your views on this?


Sports Show-9

Here is the 9th episode of my Sports Show


Sleep Deprived Soul

That's what the MBA has made me into. I sleep in bursts now. I generally work till 3 or 4 in the morning and get up at 6 30 to get started with whatever remaining work, including a quick breakfast, and a cursory glance of the case study to be done. There are times I do feel tired during the day, I just manage to catch a few winks... say 5 minute power siesta sessions, but I seem to realise how tired I am when I go back home and lie on my bed. My body seems attracted to the bed like an iron filing to a magnet. Life is interesting ....but its also tough!


The Last 2 Episodes of My Sports Show

It's All About the New Media, Honey!

Susan King at Great Lakes Institute of Management

Susan King of the Carnegie foundation was here last week. She spoke to us on the importance of corporate communication. She was stressing on the fact that if one doesn’t tell his story, somebody else will in this era where the better communicator wins. She was giving examples of how George Bush Senior beat Ronald Reagan in the US elections, thanks to a better branding campaign that was carefully built around a communication that made Bush more aggressive and Reagan more wimpy. She also touched upon the changing paradigms of competition in the new economy, and how communication has started to be more than just the print and TV media ,by extending across social media on the web like Blogs,discussion forums and social networking forums like Myspace. She also spoke on her role in the Carnegie foundation for doling out cash for organizations and causes. Susan was accompanied by her daughter and Rathna Mukherjee(Cultural Affairs, US Consulate)

Here’s a heads up of Susan King’s profile.

Susan Robinson King is vice president, external affairs, director of Journalism Initiative, Special initiatives and Strategy. She is responsible for the Corporation's relations with outside groups and devising strategies to ensure the Corporation's work has an impact on society. She oversees the Corporation's communications including its publications, web site and media and dissemination grant program. She leads the Corporation's Journalism Initiative, begun in 2005, which focuses on university based journalism education, its role in America's research universities, in preparing the next generation of media leaders and its commitment to strengthening journalism's seminal position in a democratic society. She spent twenty years as a journalist covering national and international issues and before joining the foundation served as Assistant Secretary for Public Affairs at the Department of Labor.

During her years as a journalist, King was both anchor in Washington television and a political analyst known for cover story reports on politics, diplomacy and major issues of the day. She worked for ABC News and served as a White House correspondent during the Reagan administration. She has reported for CNN and served as host for CNBC's Equal Time, NPR's Talk of the Nation and WAMU's Diane Rehm Show. She began her career working for Walter Cronkite and became an on air reporter in Buffalo, New York.


Under Skirt Adventure

How's that for some adventure? I just happened to hear news about 2 dutch Bloggers who have been filming women below the skirts....wait wait wait!! It's a far more interesting reason than plain pornotude.

Apparently in Netherlands, they have staircases that are transparent and so when women with low skirts happen to walk on the stairway, I guess the menfolk have enough reasons to ogle at them.( Is Reliance hearing? They could place a shop there..and sell a few things there :-) )

Now what 2 bloggers have done is to have been angry at such blatant ogling by men, and so to bring that to public notice, they have filmed women on the staircase, and the women community in Netherlands seem to have more reasons to frown than smile. Its the case of I will clean the gutter, by getting dirty, but getting dirty is a disqualification for cleaning the gutter.

Moral of the Story: Long live the gutter...
News Link : Courtesy CNN IBN


Dr Nirmal Gupta at Great Lakes

Dr Nirmal Gupta at Great Lakes

Prof Sriram, Uncle Bala and Prof Nirmal Gupta

Nirmal Gupta's knowledge on the Indian marketing scene just bowls you over. He is a prof who can very unassumingly engage you in a class discussion when he goes about substantiating his arguments with data about the Indian advertising and Marketing scene. We at Great Lakes, were just listening in rapt silence when the man taught as Marketing Management II. If you want a session with clear takeaways and a feeling of enlightenment in the Indian Marketing scene, Prof Nirmal Gupta is the prof to have. There was so much of insight in the numbers thathe was throwing at us and his course was all about suggesting to us to always play the game at your strengths and not the opponents strength.

The course was over in a breeze and the amount of marketing insight we have gained out of this interaction was really something which makes your mind delve deeper and ask a lot of questions. It was no wonder that Nirmal Gupta was voted thrice the best faculty at ISB. Dr Nirmal Gupta's profile can be read here.

Back to the Railway Times

What made last year memorable was the train journeys that I had travelled, during the course of the year. Two train journeys that stand out, were the trips made with office, when I was at Sulekha.com. The whole office, or most of whom I knew, travelled for an official trip once and a marriage the next. These 2 trips helped me socialise and get to know persons very well. Given that most of the people were in the 20-28 bracket, it was asy to relate to the crowd. The travelling folks were in one sense simple, that they had not seen much of the outside world, and viewing their world and being a part of their conversations brought together some fond memories.

We visited Ooty in April for a company trip (about 60-70 folks), and a small 1 day trip to a village near Trichy for an employees wedding, and oh....I forgot to include another wedding for which we didnt take leave but still travelled together on the train. This was to Tirutani, when we took the evening 16 30 passenger train to Tirupati. Those memories were great, and I get another chance to re live them partially.( as most of the employees who came on the earlier trips are now joining me in the ex-sulekha gang going to the next wedding trip)

This is happening on the 26th of August, and I have booked myself a journey to Namakkal with four of my friends at Sulekha(now all of us are ex-suleka nevertherless), and look forward to one of those lovely all-night-shout-talk-bitch-2nd class rail journey. Thats one big respite I will have from the course at Great Lakes, which is getting hectic by the term.


One of the best matches at Eden Gardens

I came across this video on Youtube, and was reminded of my days in class 6 at School. I was having a LOGO test the next day, a Thursday, and I chose to ignore it, as I was glued on to this match, and witnessed one of the best matches at Eden gardens. You couldnt get a game closer than this and when India wins at Eden Gardens, a volcanic eruption happens.
Check the match below, has around 9 minutes of video time.


Bring on the Women!

Ladies first (News from Cricinfo)

The television crew covering the Scotland-India ODI at Glasgow on August 16 may well end up focusing on the stands more than the cricket. Lloyds TSB Scotland, sponsors of Scottish cricket, announced plans to draw in cricket widows by inviting male supporters to bring their (female) partners along for free (the first 50 at least). The brains behind this marketing strategy hope to spread the gospel of cricket among the ladies. If Henry Blofeld is around, he might just want to take to earring-spotting again.

Mr Pawar, In case Test cricket/Ranji Cricket needs to get a lease of life, I suggest you to take a leaf out of Scotland cricket :-). I guess something even funkier can be made for twenty twenty...have a couple's nite... (basically to help the singles...mingle)


Compensatory Off?

Thats one term you would never hear in a B school, even in your wildest dreams. One keeps working close to 18 hours in a day, sometimes even 20, but you dont get to sleep those extra few hours the next day or take an extended weekend. At B School, we seem to live every day as if it were last day, and never seem to complain, except for the odd shrug, when you get a few minutes of free time belching over lunch. There is madness and mayhem in the volume and the quality of work given, and you need to multitask activities to ensure that nothing goes wrong.

Oh ya! between all this, you still have profs who dont tolerate dozing in the class to make up for lost sleep, and it can be quite a challenge in such classes to survive the class without the prof noticing your frame droop like a dead body. Some times life is crazy and complex and if you thought I work hard and am doing great at B School, I shudder to say that I have a lot of things pending still and I keep running with a damocles sword over my neck.

This has become my default schedule

Reach college at 9 15 am
Read News Papers for 30 mins
Check out pre reading material and close it before I start pre reading
Classes till 6 pm with a few breaks of 15-20 mins
6-6 45 Dosa Tiffen at a nearby hotel
7 - 9 - Work on research project
9 30- 12 - work on current market researcg project
12 15 - 2 15 am, lie down and sleep on the bench.
2 30 am to 5 am- See the case study/problems for home work to conclude at 5 am, that this has gone above my head.
5 am- Start the bike and head home.
5 30- Have my bath in Hot water to sleep well...
7 45 am Get up in a frenzy and quickly get ready...now with a Cold water bath, to shake off all signs of laziness.
8 15 breakfast with THE HINDU.
8 35 Start from home to college

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