Thursday, June 22, 2006

Little One!!

I have become a father!!!!

My wife (Aparna) and I have been blessed with a beautiful baby boy. As someone said "the joy of parenthood cannot be explained - it can only be experienced!!!!!!"



Monday, March 20, 2006

The Salary Game!


Well I have been quite distressed by the way the entire way media has been publicizing and sensationalizing the entry level salaries of MBAs.

It almost seems like a marketing war in order to create more pull for the tier II and III colleges - surely there are never enough seats for getting into the IIM etc.

Let me illustrate - they recently quoted that someone has got a salary of USD 200,000 approx. However, they always fail to mention what all they actually include in this. Firstly, always in such situations, the offer includes variable pay - which in I-Banking may be around 40-60% of the offer at the least(100%+ of the CTC). So lets say out of the 200,000 - 80,000 is variable pay. Out of the rest 120,000, there will be components such as Signing bonus, Relocation Expense, Travel Expense, etc. These probably amount to around 30-40K - meaning that the balance left as CTC is USD 80K. This sometimes also includes other perks that the employee may get. So effectively, the in-hand salary of the person is around USD 60-75K - considering the standard of living in the US/UK - this is barely enough to cover all expenses and have a small savings pool.

The offer doesn't seem lucrative after all!!

Well the marketing gimmik is great - however, the flip side of this is it creates mass dissent amongst all executives who have already completed their MBAs (me being one of them!!). If the media starts quoting these figures every day for a month - human psychology forgets the components and starts focusing on the bigger number (who wouldn't want a fatter paycheck). This not only creates demotivation, it makes me ponder whether we were fools to have done an MBA and have worked for 7 years and not earning 1/5th the salary of these entry level studs!

A thought to ponder - what is media actually doing these days - is it selling concepts to consumers or is it responsible for providing truth and information. If it is in the art of selling and not news, will electronic medium such as blogging take over this advertising medium.



Thursday, March 16, 2006

Holi - Lets Make it a Start of a Colourful Year

Hi everyone,

Its been quite sometime since my last post here. Well, firstly, let me wish everyone a Happy Holi - 2006.

Yesterday was Holi - the festival of colours - the onset of spring and the onset of celebrations. I started thinking on a particular issue - what is colour and what does it signify.

Well any layman can define colour - colour is the different shade of what we see around us - and it signifies the position in the spectrum. A scientist will argue that colour is the intensity of light in a particular spectrum and so on....

Well to my mind the definition of colour is two -fold. A logical explaination of colour is that it is the ability to distinguish any object by way of its appearance - not physical dimensions, but intensity of light that is thrown back at us. Its significance in our lives is immense - imagine what it would be without it - an old chaplin black and white movie - all greys, blacks and whites!!!

Another dimension to colour is the ability to express feelings - I think a colour expresses feelings - the mood the person is in - there are various lessons / articles / research on this - go google!!

Going back to Holi - a celebration of colours - if we are celebrating with colours and are colouring each person in bright happy colours - to my mind we are celebrating the essence of life - the ability to feel and we are joyous for this gift. Lets not get more sentimental here. But an even bigger celebration is the inability to distinguish. As a result of Holi - each person looks alike - all messy with a lot of colours - white teeth and black eyes staring at you - otherwise its all the same. Each and every person is happy and merry and forget all religion, caste, colour, status, income levels ----- the list goes on. This is the inability to distinguish - and I think this inability should last for year long and not just on Holi.

Well I am not suggesting that we start playing with colours each day and get to office all drunk (on bhang) - all I am saying is, lets strive to leave this distinguishing ability aside - so that it does not come under our good judgjement and we are able to make decisions and take actions based on pure logic and rationale rather than other issues. Logic and rationale - the pillarstones for mankind's greatness - lets take that as a first step - I am sure this will help all of us greet the world as one.

Cheers (hik!!)


Friday, August 12, 2005

The Chinese Administrative Dragon


I just got back from a trip to Shanghai - China's business hub. My first impression - shock. The next one - awe.

Many persons have cited that the scale of development that has happened in China is unbelievable - it can only be seen. And thats absolutely true.

There are skyscrapers everywhere - 6 tier flyovers - efficient city administration etc. For example: the ride from the airport to the city took us around 1.5 hours and its around 60 KM - there were literally no red lights - the drive was absolutely smooth - and it was an 8 lane superhighway.

A typhoon hit Shanghai while I was there - the met department issued a warning 2 days in advance that this is going to hit and geared up the city administration. Literally the system works like a well oiled machine - even though there were torrential rains and high speed winds - everything was normal. Even though streets were flooded during the rains - by the morning it was completely clear - and without any resultant potholes. Although trees were uprooted, they were cleared within hours.

Now compare this to the Indian reality - torrential rains in Mumbai - resultant flood. No city administration to speak of - dead carcuses lying around - shit all over the place. Delhi is worse - one rain (not even heavy) puts the entire system into a mess - not to mention potholes and endless traffic jams.

If it weren't for the dominance of English as a business language, this era would be termed as of the Chinese!!! We have a huge amount to learn from them.

I think we need to send loads of our IAS officers to the country for training - both military and administrative - to set things right!!!!

The Chinese also excel in their business - especially manufacturing - to give you an example - an extremely good replica of a Mont Blanc is sold at Rs. 40. I can't imagine what would be the manufacturing price of this and top up all the margins etc. This is an entire different story and an entire different article