Archive for February, 2012


It has been nearly 6 months since I have had a weekend without an agenda! No preparing for GRE or GMAT or CAT, no weekend office work and no more app -ing. The thought of the same on friday got me scared. I hate getting bored and always love being busy ;)

I rang up Sam, very old school friend of mine to come to marine drive, where we would meet up after an year! After synti was done with his weekend football, we went to churchgate when the blistering sun decided to cool down. Synti wanted to eat chicken and after meeting up with sam, we went to the “Bademiyaan”. For those of you who are not familiar with this place, I would definitely suggest this place. It is a roadside eatery behind hotel Taj, near gateway of india, with the yummiest butter chicken I ever ate. People do come in all fancy cars, stop by to have some chicken there. Synti was on a high after he had his share of chicken and when a car passed by, he exclaimed – “See, i told you imported cars do come here!!”. Btw, that was a new model of TATA INDIanCAr ;)

After that lovely little trip on Synti, we went to marine drive to have natural ice-cream. Of-late natural is the only brand of ice-cream i am having, as I get the real fruit flavor when i have one. I took a double scoop (Kesar Pista and Roasted Almond) and enjoyed the ice-cream sitting on the marine drive facing the sea and enjoying the starry night in the cool sea breeze. It felt so awesome! and then, I realized why so many people go to marine drive just for the sake of going! :)

I was having an amazing time, before i realized time absolutely flew by and Synti was getting desperate for a game of DotA. I bid Sam adieu and returned home for a game of dotA. Synti played Alchemist and rock-ed it! A very good end to an awesome and peaceful weekend. I WANT MORE OF THOSE :)

9.00Am slot – Hotel Sea Princess , JUHU

Was asked to come at 8.00 AM (did so! and waited for an hour :( )

Was 3rd in my panel and the essay started on time.

Topic: Media have focused on the disasters more often than not and that desensitizes people with the horrible scenes. (30 mins)

Wrote about how media helps people learn about why and how to protect themselves from these disasters. Then wrote about ppl have choice of what to see and what not! So its ok for media to focus on disasters provided they don’t cross the line and over emphasize on that. gave examples of tsunami, WTC attacks and  japanese earthquakes and the help media provided to mobilize people. Overall: 3/5

Was waiting outside when my name was called. I was so busy chatting with some one else that i did not notice! Made the panel to wait for a while though!

3 member panel, 1 lady (P1) and 2 male profs young (P2) and old (P3)

P2: Graduated in 2009 is it!?

Me: yes sir, from IITM in elec.

P2: what is the relation between what you studied and what you are doing! (oh no! not again. 4/4 times have been asked the same)

Me: putting them side by side, Not much to say there sir, But taking a step back, I learnt about a lot of stuff at IITM. It nurtured my math skills and blah blah blah!

P3: Maths! what maths do you use at work.

Me: told about number crunching for ledgers and stuff.

P2: why not Msc in math if you are interested.

Me: Did not think of that at the time i began work!

P2: What is this ledger engine?

Me: explained

P3: before we digress assuming it was for math you came to MS, why MBA?

Me: Sir, i want to work with the business. want to move out of IT. blah blah blah

P3: What were you options after IITM ?

Me: Sir, Initially i wanted to join a semiconductor firm and work in the digital verification area. But in the crisis of 2009, companies went bust. But i managed to get into MS with my skill set. Told him about my core strengths – number crunching, Logic and quick learning.

P3: isn’t this a better answer to your earlier question?

Me: yes sir. apologies for beating around the bush.

P3: suppose instead of 1 project that you are currently doing if you were to do 3 projects how will you grow?  Assume you have 3 more reportees

Me: sir, will analyze their skill sets and assign the work accordingly.

P3: if A is good in management and bad at coding. what will you do?

Me: will give him an organizational role. I will assign him the work of getting reqs from business and deciding on the deadlines. (geez! how dumb was i to give all my work to person A) All i said was i will keep assigning work – do nothing!

P2: what about this innovation club at morgan stanley.

Me: explained.

P3: how will you decide what benefit your club can do to morgan stanley.

Me: told him will remove redundancies and stuff.

P3: I want a quantitative answer.

Me: calculated for a sample scenario, hours saved and then * cost of resource = money saved for MS.

P1: The work for cotton farmers? is this your work or you just put it to make your SOP look good?

Me: explained what i did and how much of it was my work. Told them about all my achievements and helping reduce the number or suicides and stuff. (should have shown paper clippings! to convince them! they looked on as if i was faking :( )

P1: What is the reduction in the numbers? want a quantitative answer like before.

Me: No idea madam. atleast in the area i surveyed and tried my solution, there was not suicide after my work related to cotton crop.

P2: you seem to be very innovative. Why not work for the society instead of an MBA?

Me: sir, I need money to do anything. Especially, in charity you need money as an investment that yields no returns. That is my long term objective sir. I wish to grow a social network of successful people who will oblige to my requests for money (for charity). I wish to make the best of my ability to raise money.

P2: when did you start feeling the need for money?

Me: sir, from engineering sir. To help kids from my village with education, i need money. for their books, schooling and blah blah blah. Sir also, i wanted to setup a reverse osmosis plant for water purification. water in my district has too much fluorine. Showed them my teeth as a proof! (was so involved in explaining stuff! i started acting dumb!! geeeezz!!) The water purification plant needs money in excess of 6 lakh sir. hence my motive to earn.

All the panelists have a smile..

P3: we are done. Every one also nods. Do you have questions for us?

Me: No sir, not at this moment!

P2: you last chance to ask us (dunno what this meant! )

Me: Sir, I have friends at IIMB, whom i contacted for most of my doubts.

P1: oh! well you have all the answers then.

Me: yes, madam. most of my close friends stay there. (shouldn’t have said the same thing again and again!!)

P2: in that case, we are done. Thanks.

Me: Thanked everyone and left.

Was very happy that the interviews were over. Wanted to just go home and crash like anything!! Overall i felt the interview was peaceful. occasionally i bulbed heavily. But the biggest take away was that i am starting to feel less nervous. I started to take time for answering Q and cool my nerves in the interview.

In all an Amazing weekend. I absolutely cherish every moment of this exercise. I can chill out for a while probably for a month or 2 till the results come.

Result: Converted :)

Feb 19th Morning 9:45 slot

Getting a WIMWI call itself was a dream come true. I couldn’t sleep the previous night! prolly IIMC interview was haunting me or the fact that i was to be interviewed for IIMA was exciting. I woke up early (6AM) had roughly 4 hrs of sleep. But i was confident as i thought i just needed to give an interview. no WAT or GD!

I was with panel 1 and little did i know that WAT existed! I was shocked and very nervous.

Topic: From the inventions and discoveries of the past, which ones would you like to have under your name! (10 mins)

Thought for a minute. electric bulb came to my mind. Then did telephone. But later decided to write about bulb as i had only 9 mins left.

Wrote about edison and his invention of bulb – Increasing productive hours (work after sunset). How it inspired other physicists to invent other electrical devices and the industrial revolution that followed. Life with/without all the good gadgets we have and stuff.Even before i knew, 10 minutes were up and we submitted the forms.

I waited outside for about 2 hours as mine was the 6th interview for the day. I entered very nervous and excited.

P1: Male prof; P2: Female prof

P1: Ok, Mr. Nanda, you are a manager at morgan stanley. what is the organizational hierarchy?

Me: associate – sr Associate – Manager – Sr Manager – VP – …

P1: how long does it take on an average to get there ?

Me: 3-4 years. (proudly, I did it in 2 1/2 years)

P2: The other guy we interviewed earlier – he says grads get promoted straight through

Me: Not always sir. But we have an edge over laterals.

P2: why so?

Me:  I think we have a good network, thanks to our mentorship program and hence it is easier for us to grow and deliver

P2: you have no one reporting to you and still you are a manager??

Me: Ma’am, I was told on promotion that i was given the title for my project management skills and not people management skills!

P1: what do you do at work?

Me: told about my project.

P1: you report to Anil D’souza and he is a VP right? What other projects does he lead

Me: told something

P1: What is your daily work?

Me: started off telling about what i do, but then digressed and explained my Innovation club stuff!

P1: What is the motive of the club

Me: stammered a bit, and explained finally! ( should have told more confidently)

P1: Ok Nanda, Accountant + Electrical engg ( not again!!)  Can you help government with a Energy vision 2020 document?

Me: started off – was quickly interrupted

P1: take you time, i want a detailed report. write down if you please about the broad areas. we can go to specifics later.

Me: i wrote down: Current scenario, Current consumption patterns, consumer base, Estimated growth ( from five year plans), Energy technologies – feasible/ non feasible (if not what resources to make it feasible) , Estimated budget – Fund raising from capital/debt/equity markets

Then i explained the same for like 2-3 minutes as both the panelists listened peacefully.

P2: what % is current energy derived from thermal ?

Me: 60%

P2: Solar and wind energy

Me: around 5 %. India is a developing nation and doesnt have the resources for such huge investments

P1: can you explain where will you get tech from ?

Me: If we are not able to research by then , we can import sir

P1: what is the company in china producing solar power

Me: No idea sir

P1: it has been in the news, you should know it.

Me: sorry sir, must have missed it

P1: what is the efficiency of solar power?

Me: around 20%

P1: close! its actually half of that

P2: You mentioned about electric bulb and it influencing industrial revolution

Me: told that i read somewhere that physicists like Faraday (blunder) were inspired by the buzz around electric bulb to pursue other inventions.

(I was to realize, partially this is true, just that faraday was born 50 years before edison and edison was not the inventor of bulb!! It was found out years ago. Edison just made a long lasting bulb)

P2: What is this achievement of yours on farmers suicides?

Me: Explained. Passionately again. I was interrupted, but then as i was explaining keenly, they let me continue

P2: you also wrote about financial inclusion right ? What is the current scenario?

Me: explained about my village. (stammered quite a bit here)

P2: What about the suicides recently in AP?

Me: explained SHG and stuff in coastal India and they leading to Microfinance/ greed and stuff.

P2: that is not what i want. Why is it that only suicides are reported from AP? why not other states. Is something wrong there?

Me: explained that the 2 cases: cotton farmers suicides and microfinance suicides are not linked. coincident that both are from AP. But also told, the farmers suicides also happened in maharashtra and karnataka, where cotton is grown. mentioned that since i did not know the condition of the farmers in other states i couldn’t draw any comparision.

P2: you have a lot of “bridge” certificates. But i dont see that in hobby!

Me: i mentioned that in the extra curriculars part. So i wrote only chess in hobbies.

P2: you play both chess and bridge. Thats interesting!

P1: We are done with the interview. You can have a toffee and leave.

Me: thanks sir, thanks madam. Very gleefully picked up an eclairs! Wanted to store that as a memoir for life. but then couldnt resist the temptation of seeing a choc on an empty stomach :)

Overall I think the interview went decent, except for stammering here and there and the essay goof up! It was a feel good interview for 25 mins and the panelist nodded for every answer i gave (god knows what went right and what wrong!)

Whether i get through or not – Proud to be interviewed for WIMWI!! :P \m/

RESULT: Converted :) — April 16th 2012 :)

18th Feb 1.00 PM slot.

GD started late at 3 PM as the panel werent done with their morning shift yet. I later realize why so!

GD and WAT topic: Media has been criticized that they are not giving due importance to important news and views, but rather they concentrate only on the Sensational news. Is media justified in doing so?

Essay 15 mins: wrote about revenue model of the media and how they need to conc on trp ratings to survive. Hence their emphasis on breaking news and stuff. Then wrote about they over doing stuff. Wrote about their responsibility to shape things in a better way

GD: entered a couple of times

1. Revenue model is forcing media to take the breaking news route

2. 52 runs short of Sachin’s 100th century on AAJ TAK — is in not taking this a bit too far?

3. Rural mindsets vs urban mind sets. rural ppl are prone to getting addicted to flashy stuff

4. Child nutrition campaign by TOI — started taking and realized it was not connected to the topic at all!! :P

Was asked to summarize 2nd — meaning i did not do well in GD :(

Struggled with summary too.. ended up stating the same points i told before with some examples quoted by others.

result (expectation) Essay – 3/5; GD 2/5

Was the first to be interviewed! So i was called before i could take a breather !

3 member panel

P1 : Loud voice – Stress panelist

P2: Older guy

p3: HR

Me: his holiness Mr. Awesomeness

P1: Tell me about yourself

Me: blah blah blah

P1: Elec –> Accouting at MS!! waste of 4 years

Me: with my past experience i thought its not worth defending. So i did not defend. I told him prolly there is not co-relation but if you step back and see, I hadn’t wasted my time. grew as an individual. Developed deep bonding with my other friends and had a lot of fun.

P1: Do you work for cost center of a profit center ?

Me: cost center sir

P1: difference being

Me: explained.

P1: So engineers after govt spending so much on them work for cost centers!! (Laughing)

Me: Sir, that is the reason why i want to do an MBA and get into a profit center. That is where i can do justice to my skill set.

P1: What is so hard in what you do ?

Me: explained my tech stuff – over simplified a bit so that P1 might understand

P1: School kids will do that!!

Me: sir, told him the complications.

P1: did you build all that or you maintain systems?

Me: Sir i built some of it. Told my contributions to ledger engine.

P1: Ledgers is childs stuff!! Some one gives you what to build and you build it! where is your expertise?

Me: I had to learn everything very fast and that is where they need IITians to do the work.

P1: I dont think you learn “quick learning” at IIT. You might be born with that talent. Why IIT? and why accounting ?

Me: Silence. I gave up!

P1: Assuming you are good at accounting, account for all the money that Govt spent on you since childhood

Me: did some calculations and did time value of money and arrived at 3 lakhs!!

P1: Govt spent more than that on you. What is IITM spending per year ?

Me: Dont know sir.

P1: Try calculating. What is studnt to prof ratio

Me: told him 100 students around 20 profs so 1:5

P3: (Passively looking at certificates till now) tries to correct me. Your batch is the only one studying at IITM

Me: Sorry sir, its around 500 in all!

P1: is that the only cost?

Me: infra costs also add up sir

P1: You are a bad accountant. you dont even consider land costs!

Me: Gave up again

P1: Assuming you are good at accounting, why IIMC? What will we teach you here?

Me: Finance is not all about accounting. blah blah blah!

P1: what is the wall street movement?

Me: occupy wall street

P1: do you support it?

Me: Yes sir, ibanks have taken public money and misused it

P1: (shouting) do you have the guts to tell this at office?

Me: Havent thought on those lines yet sir

P1: (loud) you dont have the guts even if had thought about it. you would lose your job.

Me: silent. ( I felt so bad and pained in life! )

P2: suddenly interrupts and asks me to explain my childhood achievement (soln to farmers suicides)

Me: Felt that this was the moment to explain and bring things back on track. Explained with a lot of passion and energy

P3: where was this passion while explaining your job?

Me: (not again!!) told him my achievements at childhood gave me lot of satisfaction and shaped me as an individual

Next 5 mins on what i did and so on.. (the only good part of my PI)

P2: you seem to know a lot of rural india. what is the diff betn mentalities of rural and urban in your opinion.

Me: rural ppl dont have access to info. Even if they do, they dont know what to do about it. If an educated person goes and tells rural guys to do something, they gleefully do that. and then gave a reference back to the GD.

P2: why did you not tell this wonderful point in GD

Me: it did not strike me then sir.

P3: I will give you a HR seat at IIMC. Join there. all you need is to improve your PR skills and then do social service. It gives you satisfaction too right?

Me: Sir, PR skills are not my ball game. I like number crunching, logical stuff and I can use my quick learning to my advantage in finance. I wish to build a good social network of successful ppl who can contribute money for a social cause. As i grow in the organization i will also earn money and access to higher strata of corporates.Ended up asking P3, sir, if i asked you money stating i will invest this for a social cause with no returns, would you invest in me ?

P3: you have a point

P1: (oh no!! he is back :( ) How many ppl will actually donate stuff after earning well?

Me: sir, i have been able to convince my friends to do that. I think there are enough ppl giving money for a social cause sir. Ex: Nandan Nilekani

P1: he does nothing!

Me: Father ferrer, Industrialist in spain donates a lot of money for the well being of my district sir.

P1: I got it now! you want to finance social projects later on in life?? In that case its justified for you to do finance at IIMC. You may leave now!

Me: Thanks sir. (did not know how to interpret the last sentence!! – well think positive and live to fight another day is all i can do!)

 

IIMA interview is tomorrow and have lot to prepare if i should not get a thrashing like today!! :)

RESULT: Converted :) — April 15th 2012

 

 

Place: Mumbai

Date: 9th Feb 2012, 2PM

Essay writitng:

Topic: What are men without women.

Essay was mediocre. Made a blunder of writing Manmohan Singh as not having married !! Took an example of Mahatma gandhi and Kasturba Gandhi. Then wrote about Women supporting men in walks of life. and then about leaders who did not marry. Had just about time to write the conclusion.

Rating: 3/5

GD: Same topic.

Made the same blunder of Manmohan singh not married :(

Spoke thrice in 15 mins!! – very bad experience

1. Mahatma gandhi example

2. Women protesting against alcohol to keep men at bay in AP

3. Abdul kalam and manmohan singh spending their lifes for the welfare of the country with getting married

Interview:

Time: 10 mins

P1, P2: two panel members

P1: What does your name mean

Me: Lord Krishna

P2: Give me your certificates

P1: Tell me 5 similarities between you and Krishna

Me: Mischief when I was a Kid and a big smile follows :)

P1: What about now ??

Me: Childish traits have wearied off over time Sir.

P1: Is that bad?

Me: According to me NO sir.

P1: other 4 traits?

Me: Planning and Execution, Peseverance, Logic Ability and sometimes I am witty.

P1: Sometimes??

Me: Yes sir. I try to keep the teams spirits high when ever things are bad. Other wise i am serious :| P1 kept a face as if he did not understand

P1: Tell me how Electrical Engineering is helping you in your work?

Me: Told him math skills improved. What I was working in morgan.. Then carried away and started to boast about myself.. (Blunder)

P1: Am asking you how it helped??

Me: blah blah blah!! (P1 not convinced)

P1: You like math?? what do you like about it?

Me: I like application of theoretical math to solving practical problems..

P1: Example..

Me: Stutter.. P2 helps me with linear programming. I said OR. Transportation problems and stuff. Again stutter to explain what is a transportation problem

P2: What is North-west rule

Me: explained

P1: You have not mentioned Monthly remuneration

Me: wrote it down. (Not supposed to disclose that here :P )

P1: What if you may not get this much after MBA?

Me: Sir, Not interested in money. Want to work on the business side and  at the decision making end rather than the receiving end. Told him business is revenue generating and IT is cost saving. Focus on shifting from IT to business.

P2: How do you feel like to work at backend IT after studying at IITM and graduating with a good CGPA?

Me: My work has challenges of its own.

P1: explain.

Me. Told more about my work and stuff.

P1: Dont you think anyone can do all this stuff?? why an IIT-ian

Me: Tried to justify. P1 disagrees.

P1: As a layman i always wondered how power is generated? can you explain.

Me. Mechanical motion translated to Magnetic field. When it moves by Faraday and Lenz law, Electric current is generated to oppose this moving magnetic field.(inertia of motion)

P1: cant understand a thing.

Me: Tried explaining again. No effect :(

P2: How do you produce Mechanical motion to start with

Me: Burning coal for thermal Energy.

P2: How do you burn coal!!!@@

Me: By lighting it!! (God level) Everyone is laughing now!!

P2: how do you light it

Me: explained how to generate a spark. concept of current jump!

P1: using current to generate current !!?

Me: One time to start.. Once it starts, should be self sustaining.

P2: burning coal pushes the motor?

Me: Water is passed through. Heat energy is converted to Kinetic energy in Steam. That pushes the motor.

P1: Have you seen a power station??

Me: No sir.

P1: hasnt IITM taken you on field trips?

Me: no sir

P1: What else do you do?

Me: play chess and Bridge. I said these are incidentally the only mind games that are recognized by IOC

P1: Other games dont require mind??

Me: Misinterpreted this Q and replied that other games are not represented well enough to get the recognition. Probably he meant what about the other games recognised by IOC. Aren’t they mind involving.

P1: who is the world chess champion?

Me: Magnus Carlsen

P1: 2nd?

Me: no idea sir

P1: 3rd?

Me: Ahem. when i was about to say Krammik, P1 interupts and says what a dumb Q to ask. :(

P1: what place is Anand

Me: 4th Sir.

P1: What other calls do you have?

Me: A, B, C, I

P1: You may leave now.

Me: Thanks Sir.

Overall impression 3/5

Should have done better. Should reduce stuttering and listen to the Q’s carefully. Shouldn’t have answered more than what was asked.

Hoping to convert this! :)

RESULT : Converted :)