Monthly Archives: April 2010

Jack-Straight from the gut

If you don’t know how to lose, you will never know how to win”.

“Don’t kid yourselves. That’s the way it is”.

-Grace Welch

Great values make great people. John Francis Jack Welch Jr, the most famous CEO, management expert and longtime chairman of General Electric(GE) is no exception. Known as ‘Neutron’ Jack for his outragious management policies, Jack Welch was the CEO and Chairman of GE from 1981-2001, arguably the most famous management person alive today.

It is always fascinating to read business success stories. They give you an insight into the values and characters of the people who dreamt about them, built them from scratch.  In that way, Jack Welch, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Azim Premji, Larry and Sergei are remarkable persons.

Jack-straight from the gut tells the story of Jack Welch, of General Electric fame and his management policies defying conventional thinking as a result of which GE is one of the most successful companies in the world and Jack Welch the most famous CEO and chairman.

Co-authored with John.A.Byrne, Jack Welch tell us of his early childhood days in Salem, Massachusetts, USA and his entry into GE as a Junior Engineer for the Pittsfield plant of GE. From there, the story takes a rollercoaster ride as Welch gives us an idea of how he developed his business acumen and why he valued people more than anything and why it is important to trust yourselves more.

Welch tells us of the mistakes he committed(blowing the roof off the Pittsfield plant and lots more), his rise in the company, his frustrations regarding the bureaucracy in GE, his love for golf and his workaholic ways.

As we progress through each of the chapters, we learn, along with Welch what it needs to survive in a competitive world and why bringing out the best in yourselves and the people around you matters and why it is better to face reality than fool yourselves. Though considered a harsh way, demanding the very best actually helps you out in a competitive sense, understood in the right sense.

We also come to appreciate the passion that drove Jack Welch to achieve what he had done in his years, his adaptability to new ideas, his penchant for discussing business anywhere and sketching out his ideas on virtually any paper available, even on napkins, and his tenacity for striking deals that at first view appear ludicrous but later turn out to be money spinners. We learn of the deep love he shared with his mother who encouraged and supported him at every opportunity(her encouraging remarks are at the beginning of this post) which made Welch what he is today. There are many anectodes that Welch narrates which tells us what a visionary he is and his love for the job at hand. His passion that envelops anything and his innovative spirit, his relentless pursuits to weed out the useless and retain only the best are indeed management lessons to take up.

In a sense, reading such stories, that too business success stories help develop our competitive sense well and bring out the best in our characters. In that way, I would sure recommend this book as a definite read.


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IPL Bubble

I don’t think I have anything new to add to the ongoing debate on the recent IPL sham except share with you my thoughts on the subject.  No field is exempt from money laundering and lobbying, notwithstanding making a few bucks. So, what has the face of Indian sports become? A punching bag? A laughing stock? A company for making bucks?

We are a nation who love sports very much.  Too much would be apt, that too for cricket.  And in the process, we have neglected the other sports which are also existing albeit with difficulty.

One can see the attention the single sport gets in contrast to all the others.  I am not critical of those of you who love cricket, but I ask why, have we neglected the others? Baichang Bhutia(how many of us actually know who he is?), Vijendar and Akhil Kumar are less known faces in comparison to Tendulkar, Dravid, Ganguly.  Why? What has become of our mentality? Have we grown to love glamor in sports? Does it need a beautiful girl to take your attention to the sports? I bet people would have loved Sania Mirza more for her looks than her style of playing.Let alone the controversies she got into.

And we have the goddamn politics in every area.  Politics for selection, politics for sending a team to a foreign location to play/train, politics for conducting a match, etc.  What are politicians doing in a selection committee? Are they there because they are knowledgable about the sport? No, it seems.

The partiality we are showing in favoring cricket has taken it’s toll heavily. People no longer take to playing basketball or football(in the latter, a ground is needed, but not for ingenious minds), chess, golf(we need a lot of greenery here, which we have practically depleted), billiards, snooker, kabbadi.  It’s cricket all the way right from school.  You play cricket, you are in.  You are a basketball player? We will see if we have a team. Chess? That’s for nerds and intelligents.  So goes the mentality.

What is the result? The partial treatment has borne it’s fruit in a different way-scams resulting in nasty dealings, betting, demoralizing an opponent to win the game, steroids, and lots. In short, it is now in the form of IPL, the latest. The below picture is a better representation of IPL in it’s current state. Shame on us.

When three years ago the league was formed and lots of excitement was going on, I doubted for how long this bubble would last.  Seems it has broken now. What with the cheerleaders and instant gratification that the players give their fans by their sixes and fours, it is no more a game.  It is entertainment. We have forgotten that the very purpose of playing a game-for the game’s sake alone and not for making a fool of ourselves, which we are now.


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My 3D Models

I am putting here two snaps of my 3D models.  It really feels great to work on a 3D model-the more complex, the better.  It boosts your creativity and also helps you to think out of your mental box to new realms.  I have definitely grown addicted to this hobby and am eagerly waiting to get my next model. Why don’t they put this as an exercise in B schools?

I chanced upon my first model in Spencers Plaza, Chennai.  Something made me to lift the package up and consider buying it.  And the picture of a pyramid was interesting enough to add it to my collection.  Thus came the Mayan Pyramid.  They say that having a pyramid is a good sign.  Then definitely it has been good in my case.

The next one, the Empire State Building was spotted at Anveshena, Coimbatore.  I was looking for something complex and tall.  I rejected the ever favorite Taj Mahal(too obvious choice).  The Empire State model seemed to reflect power and authority.  Further it was a 2ft tall model.  So, voila!

I nearly cracked my brain in connecting the pieces(54 in all).  They are very simple, but have to be dealt with an absolute concentration and artististic mind.  And how proud I felt on finishing them! They now sit proudly on my desk.  Whenever I set my sight on them, I feel happy and positive.  Do try out one for yourselves and experience the pleasure of creation.

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