Tag Archives: IIM Kozhikode

Abhabanerjee

Konversations with Abha Banerjee

Abhabanerjee As part of the Women’s day celebration at IIM Kozhikode organized by the Gender Sensitization Club of IIM-K, motivational speaker and leadership author, Abha Maryada Banerjee was invited to address the K-community. Besides, Abha  being India’s first woman motivational speaker of international acclaim, she has written two books on Women leadership. The Public Relations Cell got the opportunity to converse with her

 

You are considered to be India’s first woman motivational speaker. What made you choose this seemingly unconventional profession?

I used to be a lawyer. From early on, I was socially inclined and I had a vision to contribute to society. I believed social change was possible. I was in this zone of building people. We need to build people if we want social change. The only thing available, at that point in time was law. I took law presuming that it will get me into the social sphere or places where I could either cause an influence, an impact or in some sort of way get involved in the social system but it was a different ball game altogether and I eventually made up my mind that personal development, motivation etc was an industry in the west, at that point of time. 20, 25 years ago. And when I looked at it, I realized, this is where I need to be, if I really need to follow my vision of building people. I need to understand people first, I need to understand how people can be built, how minds can be built. So I quit law after 10 years of practise and re-educated myself at the age of 34, to do what I am doing today. And I think it was a very wise decision because I am doing a lot better over here. I have helped lakhs of people across the world. It was unconventional, but I did not think it was because I understood it so well, that I thought everybody will pick it up but that wasn’t the case

Did you face any hurdles, along the way?

Too many things happened at that time, but eventually I found it was very important like bathing. Like you bath every day, every day you need motivation. It took me a lot of time to convince people that it works. I had to work for 3-4 years initially for people to be able to see value. Now of course it has mushroomed, everybody is doing it. A lot of people can talk but to have the power to influence and impact people in a positive way is a skill that one should learn. I have taught to many people on how to work on building others. So unconventional as it may be, it is the most important thing, people should be able to learn from. It is like a complimentary education. We get educated in a traditional academic sense but we need to build people. If we don’t do that, the education also sometimes can be wasted.

You have written a book “Nucleus” on women leadership, what do you think is the most significant barrier to female leadership?

Firstly, women are not supposed to be leaders. There is this perception that women live, not only in India but also in societies abroad, where a woman is not deemed to be leadership material. She is not deemed to be strong, she is not deemed to be mentally tough That is one of the key reasons, why we don’t see a lot of women over there. Secondly, women have to bear kids, they have to raise children.

Leadership per say requires a lot of energy and commitment for anybody who takes it up, be it a man or a woman.  Women have to give away a lot of time to things like family, which is equally important. It we choose to do both it can be extremely tiring and exhausting. In the social sphere, in the corporate sphere or in politics, the amount of time it takes for a woman to get there, it is easier to find men who would want to do the same job.  So by the time you can identify a woman who can do it, there would be 20 men standing there, saying they can do it. Plus, on the top there is more men than women so it is easier for them to hire men. Men feel uncomfortable with the stronger leadership women show. They tend to sort of push you back a little bit or cause hurdles on the way. And I don’t think it is with bad intention. We as a society have not evolved enough to see women standing side by side with men or women doing bigger stuff or women doing things that men are doing.  Nowadays things are changing, which is very good. The last hurdle I would say is in women’s minds. Who do not consider themselves leaders because they have always been taught to stay in the background. They have been taught to play from the periphery. To calm down and let things be.

Can you name one individual whom you would call your inspiration?

There are so many people. However, I am a follower of Swami Vivekananda. He is no more but his teachings and who he was as a person is still relevant. I started reading his work at the age of 9, and by 13 I would call myself a full-fledged fan. I would do anything his teachings said. But when I picked it up and I could relate to what it says, it becomes part of your personality. His thoughts are very modern, very cosmopolitan it terms of equality between men and woman, about religion, about society, about the east and the west and about how we build ourselves. He was one of the key influences in my life. He taught that we have to build ourselves as people, if we want to build other

 

You are a mother, entrepreneur and you travel around the world. How do you maintain a work-life balance?

I don’t believe in this word called balance. I use a word called integration. When we talk of balance, we presume that there is lack of it. So it is a matter of prioritizing what is important to you. Keeping in mind, I have to take care of my family, my children, my work, my husband and myself. I have had to prioritize everything in my life. I have very little social life, I do not watch television or movies, I have very few friends, I do not go out, I don’t eat out. So that is the time, I spend with my family and my work. I have always had an office, but I have never worked from an office. I have worked from my home. And I make sure I work from 8 in the morning till 3 in the afternoon, when my children are at school. Now that they have grown up they are not depended on me anymore. Also I systematize everything. I make sure things are in place. I enjoy coming to places like IIMK, this is more useful than me being out elsewhere.

What is your message for IIM K students?

Celebrate your potential. You have huge potential, you have to identify it, you have to work on it and make sure you build yourself to a point that people can see you and be helped. Always be happy with yourself but keep building on everything that you have, whether God has given you gifts of any kind, talents, education, people around you

Interviewed by | John | Rohan | Public Relations Cell – IIM Kozhikode

 

Abha_Banerjee

Celebrating Women – IIMK sets a precedent

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International Women’s Day was celebrated with great enthusiasm and fervor at IIMK on Saturday. It was a student initiative made possible the by a collaboration of individuals who believed in the cause and came forward and volunteered to make the event a great success. Guests for the event were Chairperson of Student’s Council Professor Om Kumar and Leadership Author and Motivational Leader Abha Banerjee.

The event comprised of speeches by four young women who spoke of their life experiences on a variety of topics ranging from ambition, loss, being strong, leadership and sexual abuse. Abha departed some great tidbits of wisdom on managing life, dreams and getting the best of out of both.

But the part of the event which hit an emotional note with the 100 odd students present was a surprise in the form of video. This video consisted of messages from the parents of certain girl students. Many eyes welled up when fathers and mothers spoke about how proud they were of their daughters, how happy they were that they were blessed with a girl child, and how much they missed them.

It happens very rarely that you get to a part an evening filled with emotions, honest admissions, hope and solidarity. International Women’s Day celebration at IIMK yesterday evening has set a precedence for the many events of such kind to come.

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It was an intense event, a single of its kind, which raised many pertinent questions about the kind of society we are living in. Abha spoke about how times had changed and how women today had a forum to express themselves, how they could step out in the public and speak their minds and about things which went wrong with them. I think, as a society, it is great that we have progressed from equality to equity. But the task is not yet done. It is upon us, the future parents, the future adults to take make this equity a triviality. Our children should say with surprise – really, you were treated differently just because you were a woman?!

By Preeti Bhonsle (PGP 20)
Some of the moments from the event

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Leadership Series: Dr. Subramanian Swamy visits IIM Kozhikode

The students of Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode got a chance to interact with the President of Janata Party, Dr. Subramanian Swamy on 20thJuly. Dr. Swamy visited the institute to deliver a key-note address on “Growth versus Development” as part of the leadership series organized by the Industry Interaction Cell of IIM Kozhikode1071233_10151727112122863_12771636_o


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Dr. Swamy stressed the need for women to take active role in the development of the country. He drew an analogy from the Indian mythology where the Hindu deity Brahma had allotted all important portfolios to women. The topic of growth brought back the debate on India and China. Dr. Swamy firmly stated that India was a developed land 1000 years ago, so its only a matter of time when we become a developed nation again. India reigns supreme in terms of intellect and the young population. Indians absorb knowledge fairly quickly but the only issue is lack of risk-taking ability.

Dr. Swamy believes that coming 10-15 years is the time for India to grow at a rapid pace and stand in the league of developed nations. Growth alone would not suffice; it should be coupled with improvement in quality of life, infrastructure and productivity. Only then can one confidently state that India is a developed country. In the present scenario, progress of India and China has been based primarily on Innovation. The onus is on India to channel its immense human capital to transform the world.

India followed the Soviet model from 1950 to 1990. Dr. Swamy was critical of the policies framed by the then Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru. A strong supporter of Gandhian views, he said that globalizing agriculture would expose the immense potential of India to the world. With its lowest cost of production in agriculture sector, India can truly become a world leader. Along with agriculture, Dr. Swamy laid strong emphasis on infrastructure.

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He lauded the way statistics are collected in India and criticized the manner in which China inflates its growth rate by estimating GDP on current prices instead of constant prices. He gave a simple formula to estimate the actual growth rate of China, simply subtract 2 from the data released by China. On a lighter note, he quoted an ancient Chinese belief that states – “Do not fear the gods, do not fear the devils, but do fear the foreigner who speaks Chinese.” Even China followed the Soviet model of growth from 1950-1980 but they were quick to realize the drawbacks and changed their strategy.

The issue of corruption pops up in every discussion on growth and development. The rampant corruption has pulled India back from the path of success.  Dr. Swamy criticized the government on allocation of 2G spectrum, coal blocks, black money etc. and illustrated the mis-deeds rampant in these cases. He said that corruption has to cease for India to become a developed nation. Growth should be in such a manner where people do not face the burden. There was severe criticism of the investment priorities where 70% of the investments support the luxury products. The Indian economy is getting de-stabilized due to the artificial shortages being created by the foreign companies which are not regulated. Dr. Swamy expressed his concerns over the use of ‘participatory notes’ in the stock exchange which he feels is the most dangerous derivative ever invented. He also questioned the capital gains tax waiver for investments via Mauritius in the form of participatory notes.

Dr. Swamy believes India should not open its doors for everyone who comes. He has been opposed to few of the key recent deals such as Wal-Mart’s entry, Jet-Etihad deal, entry of Air-Asia, etc. He believes that these deals do not provide a level playing field for the Indian companies. He was extremely critical of the United States for pushing its cheap capital in India and refusing to allow Indian companies to employ cheap labor from India.

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Dr. Swamy provided a 3-step solution to eliminate corruption in India. In the short run, eliminate the discretionary powers on the lines of the case of railway reservation where online booking completely removed the corruption. The medium term should be to catch the big fish and send them to jail which will create an electrifying effect in the entire country. In the long run, Indians should focus on spiritual prosperity instead of the material gains. Indian society has never been graded on money. Dr. Swamy also talked about the inclusive model of development and the failure of MNREGA. On a question about FDI in defense sector, he was in favor of contracts for component manufacturing, but was totally against the foreign companies collaborating in India to manufacture the entire product. He believed it as a threat to the national security.

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Dr. Swamy emphasized that the need of the hour in India is to align the material and spiritual value and a mental revolution in India. People should choose to not only be prosperous but also happy. Indians are special because they can do what others cannot. If they realize their true potential, nothing can stop India from becoming a developed nation again.

Kreate Talk creates great enthusiasm among K students

25 October:

Kreate, a student initiative for bringing about social change, was started by a bunch of students from IIM-K is now a growing community with over 30 members in campus and several chapters in different cities across the nation. It is also a registered partnership firm  which strives to bring about social transformation through the power of Social Media Campaigns. As such having identified the way an idea attracts people, Kreate offers its services for developing a complete portfolio of marketing ideas by way of Short movies, Music Videos, Blogs, Merchandising and Integrated Marketing.

Kreate is different from regular media agencies because it relies on a novel way of thinking and generating ideas. We rely on our sensitivity towards social issues that grapple the society and our fresh enthusiasm to work with single-minded dedication.

With the purpose of introducing the organisation to the entire IIM community and clarifying some common myths about it, “Kreate Talk” was recently organised in campus. The talk received a tremendous response from the students where several opportunities were highlighted for students to take up initiatives in the organisation as volunteers with different interests and how they can contribute to the team using their skill sets. The talk was also attended by a few faculty members who showed their support for activities undertaken by Kreate. Three of the short movies produced under the Kreate banner were screened for the audience to illustrate one of the tools for social campaigning used by the organisation. Alongside, our future plans and campaigns were also discussed. All in all, the Kreate talk helped initiate the necessary debate over several issues and gave students a platform to join hands with this growing community of people working towards bringing a positive change in the society.

A pill in Entrepreneurship by Dr. Sunil Handa

If anyone has read the book ‘Stay hungry, Stay foolish’, one would come across a chapter titled ‘The Alchemist’. It is about the success story of Prof. Sunil Handa, an alumnus of IIM Ahmedabad.According to the book, “From a hard nosed businessman to an educational entrepreneur, his is a fascinating journey.”

On 9th and 10th of September , 2010 , students of IIM Kozhikode had the unique opportunity to engage in an interaction with Prof. Sunil Handa in his flagship programme ‘Workshop on LEM ( Laboratory in Entrepreneurial Motivation)’.By the way ,the subject  ‘LEM’ is the most sought after elective course in IIM Ahmedabad .With his no-nonsense inspirational take on entrepreneurship , interspersed with witty anecdotes , Prof. Handa has managed to keep the students in the Auditorium engrossed in his words of wisdom .He urged the students to be like a ‘ Shiva linga’ .He told that whatever type of liquid one pours on it , there as no affect on the ‘ Shiva linga’ . It just stands firm. Likewise, during one’s entrepreneurial venture, if anyone is faced with any sort of criticism, one should not be undermined and be firm and should just focus on one’s goals. He went on to dwell on obstacles, stressing the fact that they are like “margasuchak”. They give right direction to oneself and that whenever someone encounters an obstacle then they should thank the obstacle. He quoted an example of him not receiving an offer from a famous FMCG company and that was the reason for him to do bigger things in life. He even went to the temple and thanked God for that incident in his life. He also quoted from Hanuman Chalisa, “Aapan Tej Samharo Aapei, Tanau Lok Hank Te Kanpei” – When you roar all the three worlds tremble and only you can control your might. This means you are the limit of yourself. He asked the students to strip the quote of its religious meaning and apply it to their managerial practices .According to Prof. Handa, “A century ago, being patriotic would have meant ‘Getting freedom from the British’. Today if you want to help your country, start some business and help the economy grow better”.

Prof. Debashis Chatterjee, the Director of IIM Kozhikode, expressed his desire that if at least twenty students out of the batch of first year students could turn up into successful entrepreneurs then the whole purpose of the workshop would be fulfilled. He was curious about the quality of the Business Plans that the students discussed with Prof. Handa and asked about them. Prof. Handa was pleased with the business ideas put forward by the students. The Director informed  Prof. Handa that the curriculum in IIM Kozhikode is under revision and feedback is taken from the students themselves on what they  exactly want .The Director revealed that if the students suggested some courses on Entrepreneurship, then the faculty would try to include more of such courses as they are trying to be very flexible in revising the curriculum.

E-Cell (The Interest Group of IIM Kozhikode which promotes entrepreneurial spirit among the students) enquired Prof. Handa about the activities that  E-Cell should involve in  to foster Entrepreneurship. His suggestion was introduction of a course with focus on one-to-one sessions and industry visits and meeting with top management of the corresponding industries.

During a one-on-one session regarding Business Plans, a student told Prof. Handa that he has 20 acres of land and asked about his desire to start a dairy farm.Prof. Handa replied, “It is a fantastic idea. I always wanted that one of my students have a dairy with 10,000 cows and buffaloes. If you ever plan to implement the idea, contact me, I will help you with the whole thing. We’ll also start a milk processing factory, use cow dung to produce bio-gas and will make organic compost of the final waste.”

Such is the charisma of Prof. Handa that he has turned many students in B – Schools over India into successful entrepreneurs. Undoubtedly, his ‘Workshop in Laboratory in Entrepreneurial Motivation’ has become immensely popular over the years.

Media Cell

IIM Kozhikode

Asking yourself the quintessential question… Why MBA?

All of us have encountered this question and have developed responses that are both impressive and inventive. These responses reflect our perception of an MBA program which more often than naught is the result of certain stereotypes. To utilize something one must first perceive it. As much publicized, the MBA program has immense potential to be tailored to suit one’s personal requirements. But like any tailored fitting its usefulness is limited by one’s ability to perceive oneself in that outfit. There are several stereotypes attached to an MBA program. The numerically inclined want to pursue a career in finance or economics, the verbally inclined want to go for marketing or HR. Although these traits are necessary, they are by no means sufficient.  The most important quality of an MBA program is its versatility. It has the ability to be much more than just a degree.  Business, as we understand it, is based on certain principles spread across measurable disciplines. But a component of business cannot be compartmentalized. Any business activity is driven by five impulses (or “senses”) – finance, marketing, operations, HR and strategy. Finance tells you which option is most profitable among a list of alternatives. But who generates the list? Similarly marketing delivers value to your business. But how valuable do you want your business to be? Operations optimizes processes. But what level of optimality do you want? HR manages people. But which people do you need to manage? Strategy builds business intelligence? But how much intelligence is sufficient? The answers to these questions may not be available in text or speech. But these answers can be deciphered by application. The knowledge of these answers is the “sixth sense” of business. This knowledge (sixth sense) is both critical and elusive. It is this skill that one needs to acquire through an MBA program.

Regards,

Media Cell

Destination Kozhikode…

While people might debate over the Kozhikode (formerly Calicut) being one of the quieter towns of Kerala, it comes as no surprise when Kozhikode is voted as one of the preferred locations for settling down. A recent survey by Rediff.com rated Kozhikode as the 15th best city to live in and 5th among the non-metros. This is not a one-off instance as another survey in 2007 by Indicus Survey Research rated Kozhikode as one of the destination cities.

Rediff rated Kozhikode 3rd on purchasing power, 10th on housing options and socio-cultural political fronts. It fell on the safety front which was pretty surprising considering our hassle-free experiences so far. Touch wood! However Kozhikode ranks # 1 in medical and hospital facilities in the 37 cities in the survey.

Kozhikode, the 3rd largest city in Kerala is known for its history, a melting pot of varied cultures, Ayurveda Therapy and our very own God’s own Kampus.