Monday, July 15, 2013

Some hints to MBA youngsters .. How to think BIG .

Many students are interested in knowing how to gainfully spend their free times during the afternoons. Is there a better way to spend the afternoons ? Can they so something worthwhile, like any good reading, research work, Six sigma training etc during the free time ? Here are my few lines .. Outside one's academic work, assignments and case study discussions, one needs to make use of the extra time gainfully.
Students who join an Institution of Higher Learning has to look out to acquire enough mastery in the following three areas.
1. Subject  matter expertise
2. Personality development and
3. Market readiness.
Making sure that you get enough and more of subject matter expertise through textbooks, interacting with your faculty members and friends, reading extensively from many knowledgeable sources and the library, the points which I am making here is for your development in the other two areas of personality development and making yourself market ready ..

My simple advice to them would be these six simple points :
Point 1. Elevate yourself to a higher level. Nobody rises above low expectations !! Human beings have an infinite potential to rise to whatever expectational levels they aspire to ..
Point 2. Make it a habit to read some quality newspapers and books from great authors, CEOs. management thinkers, reputed Professors from across the world on Strategy, General management etc. like company turnaround strategies, unique business practices, biographies of modern thinkers, great management gurus and so on. Jeffrey Immelt, Thomas Peters, Micheal Porter, Stephen Covey, C K Prahlad, Eliyahu Goldratt, Jim Collins, Jack Welch etc are some great authors..
Click here for top 25 from Time magazine and here for top 20 from Forbes magazine....

A well written book, to say in short, is the life of the author expressed in a few hundreds of pages.
“It is what you read when you don't have to that determines what you will be when you can't help it.” - Oscar Wilde. 
“If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.” - Haruki Murakami
This not only sees that your time is gainfully spent, it also ensures that your thought process changes from discussing silly, mundane matters to professionally enriching, satisfying, intellectually stimulating topics. You can see for yourself, your talking style, thinking style, interactions with peers/faculty/industry personnel etc changing for the better. At last, it guides your life through your actions, elevating oneself to a higher intellectual level. Make it a point to keep notes in a notebook. Read at least one book in a week, if possible two, but make it a point to jot the important learnings. you may need it at some time in future ..
Point 3. Transfer your scribblings and learnings after reading the book as time permits, to a weB LOG (also called blog) either on blogspot (blogger) or wordpress, so that your writings get immediately published for a worldwide audience. (It also helps to improve one's writing style too). To make your writings worthwhile to the reader, add some fine analysis to the writing, some suggestions to improve the organisation, what could have been avoided, what could have been done better etc. ie. ADD TO THE DEBATE .. Do not just be a journalist !
Point 4. It is said interaction with friends and books result in 70% of the learning. To ensure that you spend your time gainfully, discuss with your friends about their internships / projects etc. Discuss how things could have been done better. or about the organisation / business promotion activities in their state, or if there is nothing else, discuss about the latest book you have read.
Point 5. Keep your GOALS in life a little higher than others .. Plan out what you will be in five years, ten years and twenty years .. The higher your goals, the better ingenious ways you will find to attain them. The otherwise painful obstacles now become just enjoyable steps to reach your ultimate GOAL.
Point 6 : The Library is a very good place to find the best books for general reading and read them to your hearts content. I am reminded of this quote : “I have always imagined that Paradise will be a kind of library.” Jorge Luis Borges. Once you enter your professional career you may not get the time to do all the reading !!

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If you try to follow these simple points, it should improve the quality of  your thought processes, peer / external interactions and will put you on a lifelong habit of self-learning. With more and more points being ingrained, the comprehending abilities of the individual also changes for the better, helping you perform better at group discussions, interviews etc..
Do not miss out on any opportunity where you can contribute positively (be it a classroom discussion or with friends in the cafetaria). By being a patient listener you can learn from others too !
It opens to you an exciting future of terrific opportunities in life, which you never ever dreamt earlier. I am sure you will gain from these few thoughts which came to my mind. Wish you all the best !! ( if it was beneficial, do not forget to let me know..)

george..

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