Wednesday, January 07, 2015

The SPrint that was!

“Pain is only temporary but victory is forever.”

The aim of SPrint across the years has been to encourage and bring together sports persons across all B schools in the country and help them enjoy their passion, which they have probably forgone due to pressures of “The B School Life”. SPrint has been known to display hospitality and encourage fair play and it is for this reason that we have witnessed participation to be growing across the years. Friendships forged on the playground help in networking across corporate boardrooms. SPrint facilitates this in a huge manner.

SPrint 2014 saw players rise above pain and overcome adversities to become champions!
In its 7th year, SPrint witnessed a footfall of more than 1000 students from B Schools across India including MDI Gurgaon, IIM Indore, JBIMS, SJSOM and many more. Spread across 4 days, with 106 matched played which included sporting events like cricket, football, volleyball, swimming and athletics, the event held every athlete’s breath for 95 hours. Our partners included corporate names like (but not limited to) BHEL, Tata Motors, Bombay High and Spykar.

True to its spirit, the theme for SPrint 2014 was “Inspire the Sportsman within”. SPJIMR bagged the overall championship with a total of 37 medals followed by NMIMS with 13 medals and SCMHRD with 20 medals. 

For 4 days, starting from 23rd January 2015, SPJIMR saw participants from across the Top B schools in the country, playing hard to win, gearing up to competition and above all, reliving the spirit of Sportsmanship. The campus located in Mumbai was buzzling with as much energy as the rest of city. The camaraderie off the field was as exemplary as the competition on it. Winners were awarded Spykar coupons worth Rs. 40,000, Bombay high Coupons worth Rs.120,000 apart from gold, silver and bronze medals. 

SPrint 2015 is pegged to be larger. This year’s Greek theme personifies the aggression inside each sportsperson. It signifies the enthusiasm to participate and the passion to win. Above all, it signifies the spirit of sports.  With just 20 days left, registrations are filling fast surpassing previous years’! The campus is abuzz with activity. Students are excited and the SPrint committee is working round the clock to ensure that participants and spectators experience an amazing time. 

What remains constant is our dedication and enthusiasm towards sports and participants. It is time to UNLEASH THE WARRIOR WITHIN! Are you ready? 

See you at SPrint 2015!

~Madhumita Bhattacharya, PGDM 2014-16 Marketing

Making the right moves!

World (Bank) is her oyster:
I studied Advertising, Marketing, Web designing, Multimedia, Film making during my graduation and was ranked amongst top ten in my college. I bagged a placement with The World Bank, Chennai in the HR Shared Services team and focused on HR processes, internal communication and branding.

But it was during my 4 month stint in the Marketing team of Star Vijay Television, Chennai that I developed my passion for Marketing.

‘Sport’ing the right attitude:
I am a professional Table tennis player and have won National tournaments such as All India Inter University Tournament and National CBSE Cluster tournaments. I think my sporting background has built a sense of competitiveness in me and it also gives you the right attitude, which helps you as a professional.

Future ambitions:
I would like to be a Marketing Manager but not necessarily in the FMCG industry. I would love to broaden my horizons and am quite keen on Movie Marketing as a career opportunity. It’s something I am quite excited about.

SPJIMR experience:
It has been a helluva ride so far and has offered me a phenomenal experience. Classroom learning is brilliant and dynamic because of the diverse peer group. If I have to pick out a highlight moment of my time here so far, it will have to be winning the campus round of Mahindra War Room. It’s an experience I will cherish for a long time.

Hostel Life @ SPJIMR

The rays of the rising sun reflect off the water, and the lotuses on the Bhawan's lake open up their pink petals to collect liquid gold. A white bird glides above the water. The picture of tranquility.
 Over the SPJIMR campus - the Dawn just broke.
    In buildings #26 & #29 - All HELL just broke.     

It's 8:00 am. 

A hundred and eight alarms go off - Ghetto Sirens in an air attack.

Instantaneously, deathly drowsy but deadly accurate hands hit snooze like a guided missile.

1. Sleep, 2. Good Grades, 3. Social Life..."pick two, welcome to college!”
       Manage all three? - Welcome to PGPM.

Class begins in an hour at 9, that’s fixed. What time do people leave bed?
That’s a function of individual risk appetite.
Yet the uncles from 7:30, the men from 8 a.m. and the studs from 8:45 all acknowledge the morning alike when the communal Jukebox of the Hostel declares it.

 Dudes with speakers in their rooms belt out hits to which the hostel hums while making themselves presentable for college.  Nothing illustrates the First mover's advantage better than waiting on occupied shower cubicles. Fortunately or unfortunately the Microeconomic Law of diminishing marginal-utility doesn’t apply here. Optimum resource utilization is practiced while sharing the full length mirrors and collaboration happens when the ‘sincere ones’ give a 2 minute download to the ‘drifters’ on a 2 hour class pre-read. 
Mornings in the Hostel are busy - but in a good way. Everybody's on their own path but we're still on the same train. Comradeship camaraderie.

    About Ten minutes to nine:
 A mass exodus is in progress, but between the hostel and the lecture-theatres lies a key strategic decision.
   It’s called breakfast- now or after first class.

 The key parameters of - # of consumers, staff serving efficiency a.k.a "bhaiya jaldi karo" index and time remaining to class are analyzed. 
Yet the Heuristic developed over ten PGPM years still stands good-   

    Be 'Just-in-Time' for breakfast or else practice 'lean-management' till after the first lec.

     When mostly classes and rarely enthusiasm gets over by late afternoon or evening, participants return in hordes, yet the hostel goes deadly silent. It's time for mass hostel hibernation a.k.a Power naps. Don't be fooled by the silence though, it's only the lull before the storm.
Everyone's charging up for the night - the liveliest time of existence at campus.

     One invariably wakes up by shouts and shout-outs happening outside. Depending on the decibel intensity, these could be one of three things –

Sound #1:
If it sounds like a fight that sounds extremely friendly, food has been found!! , someone got sweets/snacks/anything from home - RUSH!! Away from home, the only standard remaining is ‘edible’.

Sound #2:
 Large bouts of laughter, High Fives.

Look for this room and get ready for some solid entertainment. Folks are on someone's case - a.k.a Lagao-ing sessions. These are generally punctuated by punchlines in a single wicked voice followed by howling laughter.

  In the midst of all this, academic group messages have already started floating around - meeting times are being decided. Tasks are being delegated. Classic divide and conquer.

  Dinner time doubles up as a socialization opportunity, where all the animals of the jungle meet at the waterhole. On some table there's a hot debate regarding India's macroeconomic policies, on another an admiration club for a professor's class while guys on yet another table are discussing the next Movie screening of the cine-phile club. Amongst all this, folks from the party committee are surveying around gathering consensus for the next lounge PGPM's gonna crash.
  After rounds of post dinner walks and discussions have ended, folks get to business on submissions due the next day. Seated in huddles in the garden, the mess and hostel common areas everyone glowing in the soft light halos of their laptops.
     Business plans are being made, debt equity ratios being decided, and new positioning and segmentation approaches explored.

It's around midnight, but the activity around hardly makes it seem so- the efficient humming of clockwork, ideas being born over a chai session here,  a round of coke there.
            Suddenly a loud shriek pierces through the cool night.

That’s Sound #3.

  Loud ear shattering Shrieks and sounds of a deadly chase.

   It's a birthday!! The only time to run away from friends.
  For this is a time when brotherly love knows no bounds and spills over in ample measure in the form of birthday bumps being lavished over the lucky guy.
     Just when things get wild and people begin to shout - "THIS IS SPARTA!!!!" - The birthday-bashers committee presents the cake, the theme of peaceful celebration is restored. Phew!
 So much adrenaline in the air already, arm wrestling matches break-out.
Yes, yes we have women's doubles as well.

         A welcome break from work, people start to reminisce the last room party. Weekends are a bit more relaxed and the room parties are to die for. There are those who play instruments and then there are those who invent them. Music flows from Chairs desks even the trash can.
Doesn't take long however before duty calls again and participants return to their huddles to finish work and retire for the day.

It's after 2 am now:   
 A loud resounding “YES!!”  is heard, in the background HIGH-FIVE claps - the first groups to submit all deliverables for the day.
Everywhere you look reviews are in progress, and fingers clicking away relentlessly at the laptop keys.

Birds begin chatter in the background, the dawn is near.
Late nights and early mornings...Life of a PGPM-er.
Having completed tasks for the day, you head back to your room, a little chat with the roomie who you only see mostly before you end the day. A small discussion leads to the realization of the tremendous value that’s been added in the past 24 hours.
   We're all living maximum lives, the realization is powerful, and gets you charged up and looking forward to the next day.    

CAUTION: This life is highly addictive. Use in moderation. May be that’s why, It’s a one year program.                                                

 ~Aryak Singh, PGPM 1013 Marketing

The Calm after the Storm

The sky was overcast
Grey clouds blocked all the light
It took not half a second
To turn day into night 
The rain lashed down in torrents
The tide began to rise
A sole head bobbed in water
No one could hear his cries 

The calm of seas was ruffled
The wrath of skies incurred
The head amid the sea-waves
Now only weakly stirred 

His boat was so completely wrecked
He clutched a wooden plank
As the gale blew harder
The fisherman’s spirits sank 

He gulped and gasped for lack of breath
By cold air his eyes were stung
He weakly moaned in silent pain
As sea filled up his lung 

The fisherman was losing hope
His heart was gripped with fear
He lost the will to cling to life
He thought his end was near 

But just as he was letting go
A thought flashed through his head
How would his wife and child survive,
When they found he was dead?  

He could not let them bear such grief
He had to reach the shore
He had to fight the jeering waves
He had to live some more 

He gathered up his body’s strength
His will was hard as stone

Though not a soul could help him out
He’d reach the shore alone   

He thrashed his legs and flailed his arms
He swam through foaming froth
But the raging storm grew stronger still
The water stewed like broth 

His blood was ice in water cold
His very bones went numb
But he willed to reach the shore
He would not succumb 

His faculties were leaving him
Just then he glimpsed some sand…
All his strength had drained away
Just as he hit the land. 

Astonished that the man had lived
His friends took him in care
This was a newfound ray of joy
In the time of their despair 

It seemed as though all time stood still
They stood with baited breath
They nursed and fed the healing man
Till he returned from death 

Then the cherished moment came
When he took on new life
As he blinked he hoped to see
His dearest child and wife 

But alas – when he looked up
Neither one was there
Although his eyes were question marks
To hear truth, he did not dare 

He stood up straight with trembling feet
He stepped out in the sun
He looked for the hut and shed he’d built
He saw that there was none 

The cruel storm had wrecked his home
‘twas a heart rending sight
Although he had conquered his fate
He could not escape his plight 

His feet were lead, he could not move
As grief gripped all his form
His mind was blank, unfeeling, cold
Like the calm after the storm.  

~Vishakha Vartak, PGDM 2014-16 Marketing

The Heist

The conductor hauled me into the crowded DTC bus at the very last minute. I looked around, acutely aware of the stench of sweat, the strong smell of ‘paan’ and found what I was really searching for-money!
There she sat, the prey, corpulent like a toad, spread out comfortably over two seats and sweating profusely. Her gaudy silk sari was to blame as was her flashy jewellery (necklace, rings, earrings et al). She smiled unapologetically at an elderly gentleman looking for a seat, parting her garishly painted red lips to reveal a row of yellowing teeth. I glanced at her purse, which resembled its owner in size, and assuming that it was well stocked I decided to go ahead with my plan.
As the bus lurched forward I bumped into a college student listening to loud music on his new phone-“the new Nokia 6233” he mentioned (more than once) to the several young ladies sitting in the bus and condescendingly muttered the same to the other college boys indicating his superiority over them and the fact that they now didn’t have a shot with ‘the ladies’. I hastily muttered a “sorry” and continued to make my way towards my intended victim. A young executive’s fake Tag Heuer watch caught my eye as he waved his arm about in an agitated manner and discussed workplace woes with his colleague via his new Bluetooth headset. The time read 7:10 pm. I was running late, I had to hurry. I was distracted by the loud wail of a 5 year old; clearly not happy with the large chunk of chocolate her weary looking father was offering her. My stomach groaned to remind me that it hadn’t received a morsel all day. The glint of metal caught my eye and forced me to turn sideways to see a distinguished looking gentleman scribbling away something on a piece of paper (presumably a critique on the modes of transportation used by the Indian middle class) with an equally distinguished looking silver pen.
Having made my way through the cramped bus, I finally stood right beside my prey. She appeared to be asleep, grunting every now and then, her mouth wide open. A vague feeling of uneasiness that I  couldn’t quite place washed over me as I looked at this comical sight, and for a moment  I hesitated. However, when the bus lurched forward the very next minute, providing the perfect opportunity to whisk her purse away without anyone noticing, all my previous feelings of apprehension disappeared.
I grabbed her purse, stuffed it into the large bag of old newspapers I had been hauling everywhere and was just about to make away with it when my victim suddenly leaped up, shaken out of her slumber, and grabbed my arm sinking her red talons into my flesh. I stood there, stunned by her agility, and waited for all hell to break loose.
“I recognized you the minute you walked in” she said menacingly, “you had tried to rob me last year during Diwali also”. She went on, shrieking now , with a mad  gleam in her eye “Usha never forgets a face.Oh you heartless man, preying on a hapless young women like me” she said , her bosom heaving and all the makeup which she had applied to make herself look so young and hapless trickling down one side of her face.
By then of course I had recalled the entire episode. I had remembered the only time in my 16 year old career as a petty thief that I had been caught, thrashed and forced to spend a night in jail. I stood there silently cursing myself at my own folly.
 The excitement starved crowd in the bus swung into action immediately. The conductor blew his whistle to draw everyone’s attention and proudly announced that a thief had been caught aboard ‘his’ bus.
 I was a celebrity in a matter of seconds. The college student bounded towards me, snapped a picture of me on his cell phone and rushed off to show it to ‘ladies’ and give them a blow by blow and highly exaggerated account of my earlier encounter with him. The executive used his headset, called the local police station and informed them about the situation. A few teenage boys caught me and put my arms in a bind- a move that received approving nods from onlookers and changed their perception of ‘today’s youth’. The distinguished looking gentleman used his silver pen and noted down my (fake) name and (fake) address on a piece of paper.
 The bus driver, clearly feeling a little left out of all the action, stopped the bus and since it was imperative that he also be a part of the drama, rushed towards me and landed a punch on my bony jaw. Having done that, he looked around triumphantly. After a few more tongue lashings, threats, punches and kicks to the shin, I was roughly shoved out of the bus and onto the dimly lit street.
 I noted that I had been dropped off near my house in Civil Lines and hence could comfortably walk home. Good timing- I mentally congratulated myself. I put on my new Bluetooth headset and called up my partner using the Nokia 6233. I fished out the silver pen from my pocket and examined it. There wasn’t much for dinner tonight I thought glancing down at my new ’Tag Heuer’ watch. The large chunk of chocolate in my back pocket would have to do.

~Arunika Ganguly, PGDM 2014-16 Marketing