Monday, September 22, 2008
I thought that I should reserve some space on this Blog to prospective MBAs. To start off I wanted to share my perspective on the CA Vs. MBA story.
Before I joined ISB, I tried to do some research on whether an MBA was worth it after completing your CA from the big 4. I never got a clear cut answer. Most of the answers were either negative - 'an MBA does not add much value' or were not answers at all, but mere statements - 'A CA is better than an MBA'. My question was, do I need to do an MBA after doing my CA? If yes, from where?
The second part of the question was pretty easy. I knew that if I did an MBA I needed to do it from a top school. It was the first part, investing the time that was not getting answered. Now that I am a CA + MBA and am well settled in a good job, I think I can answer this question for some of you folks who are in a similar crossroad like I was 2 years ago.
For starters, I am better off with my MBA. Both from a monetary and professional point of view (not to forget the personal point of view also). I will cover the monetary bit first.
1] You sink in big money for an MBA, but trust me you will recoup the investment in quick time if not no time (if u top ur b school many companies will be willing to take the cost of ur MBA on them)
2] The salary you will land up post MBA will be a significant jump from your previous CTC (this will be more so tha case if you are a few years of work ex down)
Now comes the tough part. Professionally does it help?
1] Your career progression to a CXO role will be faster. Companies now days are looking for CAs with a business focus to don the CFO hat which is the most powerful position after the CEO (not to forget that a successful CEO always gets along with his CFO :-) ). Further you can make shifts to strategy and other roles much more easily.
2] But before you get swayed by the point made above, it is important to identify your competence and your long term objective. If you want to be an 'Accontant' and Compliance guy then I would say give the MBA a pass and you will reach your goal of Head Accounts and Compliance faster. You can look at a CS and LLB qualification to make faster career progress and these courses can be done while you are making money.
3] For a business finance guy, an MBA is a must. While you do learn NPV, et all in MAFA, the corporate finance bit you do in an MBA is altogether different. The additional core term courses you do in Marketing, strategy, statistics, economics all will help your thought process and will take out a lot of clutter in your mind.
4] The top investment banks want a CA + MBA. So u ace ur CA. Work with a top firm in transaction advisory, and do ur MBA from a good school majoring in finance is a perfect recipie to making moolah in a top bank.
5] The point 4 above should be taken with a pinch of salt though. For a person like me who spent a lot of time in industry, making a shift to a bank is difficult. Further, please note that it is your past work ex that counts. That does not mean that the MBA does not. An MBA will help you take the big step into a great company, which you could have otherwise got in only if ou were a CA topper.
6] At work you will be far better off. People will look upto you and you will be better equiped to provide solutions, not just data.
On the personal front, you would have gained the maximum. The CA is not a great netoworking opportunity. After your MBA the doors to the coporate world will be in your hands. You will have a friend or an alum willing to help you out in any industry. The time you spend in Bschool is also a great opportunity to introspect and get your career strategy back on track.
To sum up, I would like to make a statement too! 'I value my CA more than my MBA but less than my CA + MBA '. The CA is like the assault rifle and the MBA is the lifetime supply of ammo. A CA+MBA (from a top school) is a killer combination. There is no looking back after this.
While I am getting late to work, I will write tonight....
Hopefully this post should make me get back to writing.. Let's see.
Thursday, August 30, 2007
Term 3 at ISB is the most exhausting term. Though many might not agree with me, if you are a CA, it is a lil easy as you have to fin courses. But CA's beware, and don't get complacent. It's not going to be easy. First of all, being a CA means your group is going to look up to you and you will find this the biggest challenge. Then, the corp fin course ain't easy. It is infact the best subject I have studies at ISB. The book, Demerzo, was really good and then our instructor Bhagwan was adorable. Though the non fin guys love him, I feel that he skimmed through some important concepts. But overall the pedagogy is awesome out here. I find that you will be pleasantly surprised to note that even the courses in one term gt linked somehow and you are able to appreciate an issue better. They say, term 4 onwards, the work load isn't going to be as much. Let's hope!!!
Last week was pretty disturbing for me personally. I am from Hyderabad and the blasts at Gokul Chat and Lumbini Park came as rude wake up calls. Hyderabad has always bee a peaceful city. I don't remember so much chaos and fear even during the 1993 riots. Gokul is a place frequented by students and I can still remember those days when I would go there to enjoy the wonderful chat with my friends.
Anyways life moves on. Term 4, I wait for you.
Saturday, June 9, 2007
With every passing day, my admiration for my peers only increases. In one word it is a like looking into one of those kaliedoscopes during my child hood.. Different colours, each distinct and adding to the splendour of the rest.
The 1st terms are done and over with.. and term 2 starts coming monday.. they say the 2ns term is even tougher and the 3rd is one helluva term (with 30 assignments). An alum said that u have to blindly trust ur study group mates in this term as the workload is going to be something! But I guess, with time u get used to the ISB kinda life.. Believe me its fun and the most fun u would have ever had.. Yes what Nishant Pandey said "जैक लग रही है भाई!" is true, परंतु जैक लगने से आदमी ऊपर ही उठेगा ना!
Friends, friends and more friends at ISB. I have never interacted with so many bright folks.. and my FIRO-B (U will learn about it when u join ISB) indicates that I am low on inclusion.. but I guess post ISB there should be some change in this part of my personality. But the LDP programmes didnt impress much. Maybe the trainer wasn't great, maybe we were all to tired after the terms... but the experience left a lot to be desired.. Anyways... I wanted to talk about my new friends... Last time round I introduced you to my study group mates... this time round I introduce you to the senior citizens club...
Let me start with Rao kropulu... the oldie in our group.. well he is the oldest actually.. but is young at heart.. A volleyball champ...and he actually looks like the chubby Jupiter Jones from the three investigators... Rao is championing the General Management Club at ISB now.. and he is doing a great job...
Ratnakar Gore... is the fellow Satyamite.. not a dynamite cause only nipunites are meant to be dynamites... He is the second oldest in our group... Recently Preethi, Ratnakar's wife hostd us for dinner.. Great Pav Bhaji...
Kiran Alla... the trainer.... He keeps the club going by demonstrating high degrees of discipline and focus.. Kiran.. keep going buddy... Not sure if he is the third oldest...
Now my two favourites... Doctors Keerthi and Sushanshu... I finally have friends in the NCR.. Actually Neha my groupy pipped them to the post for that credit.. They are the diversity in the group.. Sudhanshu sahib needs his armstrong to keep his brains strong! The armstrong session we had was something man... If you get a chance lay your hands on a armstrong... Its worth it...
I am at home and mom is shouting asking me to come and have dinner... So I sign off now... I will continue introductions to my friends in my next write up... Sushant, Ankit, Random and the Peacocks, Sonali.. All my CA project buddies... plus Jayshree (Khakhra speacilist..) and many more....
Hey it feels so nice to have so many friends.... My Dreamz continue.... :-)
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
We.... Let me introduce you to my group mates at ISB. BTW, I am part of Group E6 and my team members are Anant Jhawar (the Detroit Guy!!! Ask him about the detroit incident), Jaspreet Sidhu (the fiery chemical man from Chandigarh), Shubha Pai (Salsa is thy middle name) and Neha Kaushik (the only Mallu in our group).. Isn't my group interesting...
Well this post is not about my group, but I had to mention their names, cause they are part of the endurance test - the marketing assignment... We are almost done with our assignment... but are still not sure about it! Well thats how it is.. 20 Marks it is... We have be sure that we get it right enough to embarass Kotler... Yeah Kotler is my good friend.
साला, पिछले जनम का बदला निकाल रह है मुझ पर... क्या करूं।
Tomorrow is photo shoot day.. CAS (the career advancement folks) are going to snap us up... and then publish them in a matrimony booklet, which I presume will be seen by prospective employers. Imagine me going for a swayamvar... Plus tomorrow is election day.. The new Prez (praise the Prez) is going to get elected...
Otherwise today was a dull day.... I was sleeping with my eyes wide open.. till I decided to contribute to the groups assignment efforts... I have to get back to dreaming now... eyes wide open or eyes wide shut ....
??? What was the samosa for...
Sunday, May 20, 2007
Well thats the first 36 days at ISB for me. Just finsinshed my ECO assignment, so thought of taking a break and yes, for the fist time in 36 days, I did think that I have the time to pen down a few lines... Well that's me... the typical taurean, lazy is thy middle name.
Time is flying by and there are only 11 months or even less to go before graduation day!! and maybe a month or two fewer before our future employers make offers to us.. At ISB be rest assured that you will not know how time flies by.
I reached campus on 14th at around 2 PM and from 3PM to 630PM or so I was busy with completing all formalities. Sushant, my buddy from school was with me to hep me out. I was relieved from my duties by my last employer at 10 PM the previous night (BTW, I was on call up to 2 AM), so I didn't have the time to take a back up of my Laptop data. When I was told that I had to give my laptop for formating on the day of arrival I panicked. Lucky me, Sushant was carrying a 2GB pen drive. So I quickly took a dump of the data and handed over the laptop to the IT folks. Only did I realize later that they only reformat your C Drive. THEY DON'T FIDDLE WITH THE PARTITIONS ON YOUR DRIVE. SO IF YOU HAVE ANY IMPORTANT DATA ON ANY OTHER DRIVE IT WONT GET LOST.
The next one week was orientaiton week. Lot's of fun is on the cards during this week. Lot's of bonding activities, inter section games, competitions et all.. BTW, I am in section E... and our slogan goes ROCK E..... ROCK E.... The previous section E folks had a funny slogan which went something like EEEE----HO... EEEEE---HO.... Doesn't it sound familiar!! We dumped it straight away.. Our section has lots of talent... We did pretty well in the outdoor sports, but were at the bottom of the table overall.. But that doesn't matter, we still ROCK....
Pre terms started in week 2 and we got our first experience of what life will be at ISB. Honestly the pre terms were not of much use. I suggest that guys who plan to enrol next time round, do a read of some of the recommended texts for Stats and Quant (I took these). Heard that account pre term was decent. For Stat, buy a Levin Rubin.. It's worth it and is easy to digest. Spend an hour a day with Stats and Quants during your one month before ISB and you will notice the difference in Term 1. I will write more on the pre terms later.
Term 1 starded on April 30 and our first mid terms are thru.. Waiting for the results now.. and also doing the pre reads for the coming week. The GSB election process has started and there are a couple who have thrown their hats in the ring. Let's see what happens...
In between all this, I had my most wonderful experience on campus. I was woken up at 12 in the night on my birthday.. Friends were there to wish me.. and to complete a ritual at ISB... i.e., DUNK the Birthday BOY/GIRL in the swimming pool... Sushant was there with a birthday cake. Dunking is truly a great experience..... All you folks who dunked me... love u guys.... Thanks for making me feel special.. Well these are the moments which help you survive the rigour at ISB, so be a part of every such moment.
I gave myself fifteen minutes to write and I realise that this blog is getting a lil bit unwieldy and is not having a proper flow. Guys this is what happens to you at ISB.. So many things to do.. so little time... you have to plan... plan ..... plan.... to get things right.....
I am going to stop now... I will try and post more regularly on the happenings at ISB (Weekly basis). See, better planning already.. and my blogs will surely read better..
Before sigining off.... I must tell the reader that I have met some great folks at ISB.. and I guess many will be friends for a long time from now onwards... Particularly our ROCK E's....
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
14 working days to go, the countdown to my last day at Nipuna has begun. However, this post is not about Nipuna but about lunch! It is the most important hour or so (can be less or MORE!!) during the workday because of many reasons.
For starters, your boss can’t stop you from going for lunch. If it’s not your day, this time is the best time to take a break and clear up your mind. It is the best time to catch up on gossip too (Why do you think the cafeteria is always so noisy?). For some people it is the extra hour to work. Yes, WORK!!, while for some it’s siesta time (I remember those days when I used to sleep in my car during the lunch break). For the guys who are just about to get married, it is the uninterrupted one hour of cootchie cooing… and for working guys going to take their GMAT (like I did) it is the one hour of studies for the day…
Now, wasn’t I suppose to be focusing on lunch.. hmm…. When I think of lunch, I am reminded of my school. The lunch used to be awesome and we used to wait eagerly for the Friday CUTLETS!!! Ask a HPS guy about Friday lunch and he will say CUTLETS! The next great lunch thingy that comes to mind is the unfixed lunch at Mainland
Lunch during the next one year at ISB is going to be something, when I will most probably be spending more time using the break for other thingy’s rather than lunching… Let’s see… But I want to cook.. Cutlets, Rasam, Pappadums, and the list goes on….