"Snapshots from IIM
- by Prashant Dinodia *
I am in second year now. Its amazing how all of a sudden you
are expected to know and explain things that you yourself were trying to know
just a few months back. You come back from summers, and - 'poof' - its like
sudden promotion. You are a 'senior', with electives, with spare time, and with
all the gyan. And the worst part is that you have to live up to it.
Unfortunately, you have a sham in form of summers. Really,
most summers are nothing more than a joke. For me, I was picked up by a reputed
bank for a 'finance summers', and was even given the option to choose my
department. And like any wise kid, I choose 'treasury', yes - the happening
place where all the money is managed. But to my agony, I found myself doing an
IT project with unclear deliverables and dubious goal. And to demonstrate the
skills of the HR department of the bank, they had formed a team of four, from
four IIMs, of which three (including me) were commerce graduates and the fourth
(poor guy), a chemical engineer. And I need not narrate the rest of the story,
for its useless, like the whole concept of summer training.
You go for summers and find that actually age-old theories of
Parkinson and Peter make more sense than the so-called 'modern' concepts of
strategic HRM. You find that people are busy beating the rule of 'there's no
free lunch', both figuratively and also literally. You find that the
compensation continues to be the hygiene as well as the motivating factor behind
keeping the employees motivated, or should I say preventing them from 'hopping'.
End of it, you find Dilbertism more practical than Gilbrethism.
But anyways, the CV for my final placement will say great
things about my summers with words like 'value addition', 'learning experience',
'exposure', 'hands on training', etc., spewed liberally. And if the company goes
on to give me a PPO/PPI, the above things were not based on my summers at all,
but on what I learnt from my poor batchmates about their summers. My summers was
just perfect, and I already felt a part of the organization during the summers.
Back on campus, you have your portfolio of electives,
diversified across various disciplines and supposedly hedged against vagaries in
type of companies finally turning up for placements. This time you cannot blame
others for your miserable life because you choose it yourself. Grades don't
matter anymore, but who knows they may just consider the grades for something or
the other. After all the maxim still holds - 'grades don't matter, CGPA does'.
The juniors look up to us for gyan and guidance. I think its
only when they will become 'seniors' that they will realize the irony and our
plight. All of a sudden you feel proud when you see the juniors slog, and the
usual comment, 'Ah! You guys have it easy. You should have seen us slog. Man! It
was hell'. It's another thing that the above statement is made more to inflate
our own vain pride than to comfort the junior.
End of it, things have slowed down. Somehow you know that the
first year is gone. The 'chalta hai' has crept in. A few more months, and that's
it. But really 'that's it'? Hell no! That is where it begins. So would I like to