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January 1, 2007

What Millennials Want
A Forbes article surveying Millennials to learn about what they want… and guess what comes up – happiness, purpose, and freedom!

IIMs vs. Ivy League MBA programs
In my unique capacity of having pursued MBAs at both IIM and an Ivy League school… this article draws a comparison between the two different educational setups more geared towards those young undergrads looking to decide on when to pursue an MBA and where to apply. While both setups are great in their own respects, they serve different set of objectives which results in significant differences both in the structure, constituents, and the outcomes.

In conversation with the IMF General Counsel
Sean Hagan was kind enough to spend time talking about the latest economic challenges and the road ahead for IMF. A lot of this discussion is focusing on the current crisis in Europe but then also delving into his understanding of where IMF stands (should stand) in the global economic system.

FT: Life after Wall Street
An FT article going behind the scenes to look at what some of these “in-the-media-lights” bankers do after their stints at Wall Street… more so after the numerous layoffs during the financial crisis.

Ten must knows before a venture capital pitch presentation
Top 10 things to keep in mind before presenting to a VC… adapted from the wisdom of a veteran Venture Capitalist.

Inside McKinsey – knowing about the firm in the backdrop of a sad incident
While this FT article has been written in the context of the most disturbing scandal it ever faced… it offers a very insightful glimpse into the mystique surrounding the firm’s internal operations. One definitely has to appreciate the homogeneity of the firm culture across the world and also its agility to adapt to changing environments while keeping its core values of client service intact.

David Rose on venture pitch presentations
A very detailed narration of David Rose lecture at Columbia Business School on how to prepare for a VC pitch. This is very helpful for those budding entrepreneurs looking to put their business model on paper to present to potential investors.

The last sermon of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)
If one has to look for a summary of life lessons in Islam, this is one sermon that gives that all. This sermon was delivered on the Ninth day of Dhul-Hijjah, 10 A.H. (623AD) in the Uranah valley of Mount Arafat in Mecca. It was the occasion of annual rites of Hajj. It is also known as the Farewell Pilgrimage.

Preparing for a consulting case interview
Based on a case I have been giving to a number of people for their case interviews, this article is an attempt to pen down all my thoughts about doing well on a case interview by taking a sample case step-by-step. You could either go through it on your own or have someone refer to it initially and give you a case.

The Globalization of Protest
This is an adaptation from an article by Prof. Joseph Stiglitz. Political influence and anticompetitive practices (often sustained through politics) have been central to the increase in economic inequality. And tax systems in which a billionaire like Warren Buffett pays less tax (as a percentage of his income) than his secretary or in which speculators, who helped to bring down the global economy, are taxed at lower rates than those who work for their income, have reinforced the trend.
On one level, today’s protesters are asking for little: a chance to use their skills, the right to decent work at decent pay, a fairer economy and society. Their hope is evolutionary, not revolutionary. But, on another level, they are asking for a great deal: a democracy where people, not dollars, matter, and a market economy that delivers on what it is supposed to do.

An oil company’s outlook for the energy industry
This is based on an excerpt from a session by Hess Corporation’s Chief Stategist.
Overall energy picture: Bottom line – Asia overtakes – globalization
Hess oil view: demand back at historic highs, China and non-OECD drive growth, increasing dependence on Saudi Arabia and Iraq; declining spare capacity, robust price outlook

Limited Purpose Banking – Taking lessons from Islamic Finance
This is based on a Forbes article written by Laurence J. Kotlikoff and Edward Leamer, professors of Economics at Boston University and UCLA.
We need a financial sector but not one like this. Nor do we need Wall Street hitting us up for its gambling debts. What we need is Limited Purpose Banking (LPB), which would transform all financial corporations, including insurance companies and hedge funds, into mutual funds. They would, henceforth, be called banks.

Call for a fundamental change to the existing global financial order
At the World Leaders Forum organized by Columbia University, Dr. Ahmad Mohamed Ali Al-Madani, President of Islamic Development Bank, shared insightful perspectives on the looming international financial crisis, the excessive reliance on debt as the achilles heel for the global financial order, and the way Islamic Finance can offer great ideas to completely overhaul the global financial system. The IDB President also shared five key principles which would be the cornerstone of a sound financial system.

You know what I did this summer? (Part 2)
Second in a series of two posts describing my 2011 summer experiences…

You know what I did this summer? (Part 1)
First in a series of two posts describing my 2011 summer experiences…

Reality and media portrayal… totally out of sync
Media’s approach turning tangential to the ground reality and no longer being the voice of the people it was originally supposed to be.

Is it time to ring in a new era of social justice?
A glimpse into how the current world order (including the democractic rhetoric) is straining the social fabric globally and initial thoughts on how we need to usher in a new era of social order.

First year at Columbia Business School… the highs and lows
Recap of my first year at business school… the secret behind the busy life!!

A preview to Value Investing
A summary of all that I learnt about Value Investing from Prof. Bruce Greenwald

10 tips to nail a venture pitch
10 steps to a successful venture pitch from a serial entrepreneur and angel investor

A conversation about the US Financial Services industry
My conversation with a friend on how hollow this financial services industry has come to be and its direct influence on the global economic crisis.

International state of affairs
Drawing up a replacement for the obsolete international agencies to regulate the new world order.

What India lacks…
Reasoning for why India can never surpass United States’ streak of innovation what with its major business conglomerates thriving on access to regulated industries and indirect control of the government.

Telescopic view of world economy in 10 years
It’s an attempt to answer the question: Who will drive the world economy in 2020? Is it still going to be US or is someone going to displace it from the driver’s seat?

Myopic view of business performance
Companies play with performance metrics to show business results as they want it to be seen. This is no longer about actual performance but about doctored performance.

My conversation with United States Attorney
Snippets from my conversation with United States Attorney, Preet Bharara, on the current insider trading and financial irregularities that his office is investigating.

The Unholy Connexion
Yet another evidence of the dirty politics being played by both politicians and business groups in India

Turning east isn’t easy!!!
What are the unwritten challenges that lie in wait for businesses thinking of riding the eastward growth train?

Putting “trust” in the driver seat…
Putting business on the back seat and thinking about trust building in the world of business… insights from some people who have put trust building to practice in their careers!!!

New York reporting…
Initial glimpses into my life at Columbia Business School (CBS)!!!

America’s Real Dream Team
A case for introducing reforms in US to facilitate easier immigration based on potential contribution of intellect, skills and expertise to the US community.

Optimism vs. Pragmatism
Optimism is seen as a way of leading a happily successful life by many… but many others also see it as a cause for all our miseries. Read this article to know more on my pragmoptimism theory!!!

Going for a second MBA…
The moment I mention about my second MBA plans, everyone’s ears stand up!!! When people are thinking twice about their first MBA, I decide to go for my second… so here’s a reflection on my rationale for a second MBA.

Preparing for the next crisis
The moment a crisis hits us, we say… anything that goes down will come up. And this optimism is ruining us… as we forget to look at the root problem. Perhaps, the solution to preempt the next crisis lies in demystifying this fundamental problem.

The breathtaking Langkawi Island (Malaysia)
A tourist review on Langkawi Island in Malaysia along with tips on not-to-miss tourist attractions and suggestions

Being forgetful during a crisis is hazardous!!!
Attempting to highlight instances where common business rationale is thrown out of the window when crisis comes knocking on the doors

Today’s world… building perceptions of instant gratification
We live in an age when not only do we want everything now, the technological innovation and our lifestyles have created the perception that it is actually achievable.

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