Monthly Archives: October 2014

MYRA PGPX-2014 and MYRA PGDM- 2013-15

Originally written by Senior A.S.Kaushal @ on September29, 2013.

My class comprise two parts reflecting what Indian population today is, PGPX- a set of industry experienced professionals with average experience of 14 years (or 8 years if we exclude an individual’s experience of 30 years- Statistics do lie) and PGDM- mixed set of experienced (majority year or two, a few more than 3 or 4 years), fresher, enthusiastic students, both raring to go and set new benchmarks through the business and social learning they gain at MYRA.

PGPX is a one-year advanced executive programme for senior managers and entrepreneurs with at least five years of work experience and we “9 navratans” with diverse industry backgroundsCement Business, Aluminium Manufacturing, Internet Security, IT Consultancy, Healthcare, Shipping, Import consultancy, Learning and Development, and Education are the founding PGPX Batch. There are 47 in PGDM, a two year course.

I knew the batch strength for a founding batch will be small, but I haven’t thought that it will be so diverse. Every day there’s a new learning and definitely a great experience of different cultures, a new place, different kind of teaching system with a new teacher every fortnight, lots of assignments, projects. Sometimes even 24 hours per day appear to be low.

Every fortnight our teams are changed, with one PGPX and 5-6 PGDM students, working on different case studies, carrying out group and individual assignments. Some of the PGDM are really good and their IQ level is at least much more than me. The sheer hard work and speed they bring in is exemplary, always ready to take the head on the challenge posed by the visiting faculty.

Everyone, either from PGPX or from PGDM, is extraordinary talented, for a good singer (in fact there are many), there is a good dancer, for a State level football player there is a movie blogger, if there is an entrepreneur having his own growing company than there is an individual handling traditional family business of mines, for a very good painter, there is a good adobe photoshop artist. Some are very good stage speaker and for them, there is me – a very good listener.

Girls are beautiful, Venus incarnate, yet considerate and focused towards their career aspirations. No one is here for formality or to follow parent dictate, which is quite evident during team presentations in terms of healthy competition, I must say everyone has come here with clear goals and aim is to obtain best of Management education.Saving grace from getting brain dead is the super weekend i.e. fun time (weekend between two courses), we are utilizing this for movies, site seeing -as Mysore is a renowned tourist spot for its royal palace, zoo, lakes, dam, waterfalls and many more. We had a fresher party on our arrival, some of us have been to even a nearby hill station Coorg, Ooty (during an accidental two-day break between two courses).

Overall, its a great going for new institute aspiring to be Harvard of India in near future, which should not be difficult with the faculty associated with MYRA and talented students having zeal to learn, grow and perform.

MBA Log: Month 1 at MYRA School of Business, Mysore

One month done and here I am blogging from the comfort of my bedroom. The last month seemed like a year as we were involved in so many things right from day 1.

June 24th was sort of a red-letter day in my life as I would be rekindling the fun, cluelessness during classes and exams, camaraderie which can only be associated with college life. Though I would have to leave Bangalore for Mysore, the experience in itself was exciting. It was the first time that I would be spending in a hostel and along with that I could not follow the tried and tested ‘photocopy notes from the class nerd at the last minute and slog all night’ model that had served me quite well in my engineering days. MBA was a different ballgame altogether like so many people had briefed me about before  I left.

It was a hard moment for my parents and me when they dropped me off at Mysore as they would see a lot less of me. However, my initial fears were dispelled that very night as the whole group staying at the hostel went out for dinner. It gave us the chance to break the ice with the others in my batch and also due to the early glimpses of negotiating skills of two of us, we managed to get a discount on the food. Good start!!

Day 1 at college was a total eye opener as our administration brought forth Ms. Meera Sanyal, a legend at Royal Bank of Scotland and now pursuing a role in Indian politics. Her message despite the superstardom she had deservedly achieved in the finance world was simple. Work for the society and bring about the changes to them and the country. This was followed by a lot of other speeches and we were done for the day.

The next two days was what I had looked forward to a lot as we were to be taken to The School of Leadership (TSL) in Bangalore for some team building exercises. This would be the chance I had looked to get to know the others in my program a lot more. The initiative was an instant success from the moment we stepped onto the bus at 5 am. Yes, I woke up at 3 45 am!! Believe it!!

I had made quite a few friends within my first two days of College 2.0 and one of them was a Bangalorean by the name of Nanjunda Prasad. We had the misfortune of sitting right next to the speakers on the bus. And no, they were not Bose speakers by any chance. There were more of a D.K.Bose brand of speakers which jarred and screeched at every chance that was given to it. Add to that the driver deciding that he would make this ride hell by playing songs which had ridiculous lyrics like ‘Lets rock the soniye’. I have already launched a manhunt to find the lyricist of this song!!

After a struggle, I managed to sleep for 15 minutes in a 3.5 hr journey. After a little loss in direction, we managed to reach TSL where we famished souls were treated to some delicious breakfast. Our activities were to be coordinated by a person called Mr. Joseph, a truly delightful person who ensured that we had a good time that day thanks to his innovative ways to get us to learn basic management lessons through activities which included a game where we had to kick a football between makeshift goalposts. I managed to beat my career record of 15 goals in this game. Yet to receive that award from FIFA for this. Wondering what’s taking them so long!! 😛

The rest of the day and the following day had other such activities where we learnt more about the nuances of being a manager and also more importantly for me, I was able to get to know my peers better.One of these games involved the usage of absolute gibberish words like Ongo, Pongo, Tongo… Sounded more like auditions to add new words to a Bingo snack ad. (Vango Pongo Ukarungo.. to refresh your memory). Another was where we had to build a missile launcher using bare minimum material. A teammate of mine christened ours Dragon Backfire. I would suggest you start scratching your head right away and continue at it as I will not reveal (or rather too embarrassed to reveal) just why this name was chosen.

One of the persons I met was one who had worked in Narayana Hrudalaya and was part of his very own cancer hospital in Bangalore. And also he was a walking encyclopaedia on football and probably everything else on the planet. Another soccer soul was an Under-19 player for Mysore University who had been working with Dell.

And oh yeah, there was this one guy who could tell your character by means of analysing your handwriting. I have been very careful of not letting him see my writing till now.

The rest of the week passed by with talks from eminent personalities like Mr. Vineet Nayar, a face I could relate to very well thanks to my Infosys Mysore days. This was followed by a session from a German professor teaching at our campus called Dr. Wolfgang Messner on how people behave in a public environment and within offices. Guest lectures were a frequent event as we had eminent personalities from CXO’s of software companies to social entrepreneurs visiting our campus to share their experiences with us.

Leadership was the first course of the year and was to be taken by a professor from Arizona State University named Dr. Minu Ipe. The next two weeks were just an eye opener not only for me but for the whole class as she got us to introspect quite a lot and resulted in a lot of analysis possessing depth as part of assignments. Our group assignments were a delight as I had a team that was very cooperative and receptive to opinions and offered some of their own too.

But this course involved a lot of self-analysis which meant studying couldn’t really help us here (something I always told my parents when I got low marks:-P). Hostel life was simply a dream for me as the building was always full of life. People going into others’ rooms at odd times, different genres of music being heard (Telugu on the ground floor, trans on the first floor and rock on the second just to be specific), beer and food always in surplus were just some of the things I had never exposed to all this while.

The course ended with a module exam. Exams, usually, meant preparation of chits, contacting the studious persons and buying them food so that they will return the favour by helping us in the exam. But for the first time I sat for an open-book exam. Well, an open book exam has purpose when you have a book where you have actually written something relevant. History suggests that I wouldn’t have written anything and I remained true to it.

I wrote the exam with all my powers of limited creativity and music blaring in my ears which had a setlist of ACDC, Metallica and Iron Maiden.

The fun continued as our second course was something called Managerial Accounting to be taught by Dr. Govind Iyer from the US. The general stereotype on accounting professors was that he/she would be strict and no nonsense. Dr. Iyer was anything but that. In fact he wore sunglasses to class, had an ear piercing and had a style of speaking which has become a rage in the college now.

But the course was really interesting as we learnt a lot outside the classroom during group assignments and case studies. The day before the final exam for the module was what was a throwback to the under-grad days. Late night studies till 2 am supplemented by coffee and music has probably helped me garner a just-pass in this course…

And oh I nearly forgot…. Udaya TV had telecast one of their episodes of a talk show called Sakhiyara Sakkath Maathu at our campus. Though a vast portion of my classmates are non-kannadigas, the experience of seeing just how a live talk show is being set up was an enlightening one. Two of my classmates were part of the panel that was to express their views, one of whom even gave a melodious song to inaugurate the occasion. The show was hosted by someone who was a regular in South Indian movies, Vinaya Prasad. A constant smile on her face coupled with sheer power in her delivery of speech, she held the show together with a control that I had never seen before.

Wish the same could have been said about the Master of Ceremony that day. All she had in her locker were ‘speak some inspiring words’!!!

Wow….1000+ words to describe what has been an eventful month…..Hopefully more of these to come as time flies by……!!!

Experiences from Srinivasan PGDM-2 about their first month of immersion model MBA.

original post @ on June 26, 2013.

Financial Accounting lectures – Prof Radha Krishna & his different way of approaching accounts

Professor Radha B. Radhakrishna brings over 17 years of executive-level industry experience to the classroom and most recently was Director at UBS Investment Bank, New York, Executive Director at Morgan Stanley, New York, and Senior Manager at Manikay Partners, New York. He also has a distinguished teaching record – having been a Lecturer at the University of Michigan, Adjunct Professor of Accounting, Columbia Business School and Assistant Professor of Accounting at Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota – where he was named an Outstanding Teacher and nominated for Teacher of the Year.

 I honestly have no words to describe the feeling I underwent before the commencement of the course. I was nervous but also eager to start. Being addressed by an IIM-C alumnus who went on to do PhD from Michigan Ross school of Business, and held director positions across the elite league of Investment banks. I could not have asked MYRA more in terms of faculty- one of the best learning experiences I have had so far.

The course started on 15th June, I was excited and looked forward to the first class as I come from the commerce background. I was eager to see how all the non-commerce students would feel by the end of the course, and I honestly felt a tad bit over confident! But believe me by the end of the course I realized that having all that prior knowledge was not practically applicable.

The subject started with a basic introduction to accounting used by firms to measure and report their economic performance and financial position to all their stakeholders and potential investors. There were many examples quoted in classes that were related to the practical and real-world experiences that helped us relate to the subject better. As our director of Research Dr. Abhinanda Sarkar says,  “Training is about developing skills; education is about learning how to develop skills.” This course helped us learn how to develop such practical skills. The use of excel spreadsheets was an entirely new way of doing accounting for me. It gave me a sense of how accounting is done in reality, and the ease with which it could be done was quite surprising.

We were taught to prepare financial reports by the use of basic accounting techniques i.e. how the data is collected, organized and recorded in the books of accounts to prepare reports. Then we learnt how to analyze these financial reports and evaluate the company based on its performance. The evaluation of a company is based on ratio analysis that we learnt and also applied in our project.

The mid-term exam that was held on the fifth day was quite hard for me, as I had never used the excel spreadsheet to do an accounts exam. I was slow and just managed to complete the exam in the nick of time. I was quite relieved when we all had to give the final exam on paper, like a normal test.

The main aim of a manager out in the real world is to be able to make the right decision at the right time. This was the aim of the project that we were asked to work upon in teams. I thoroughly enjoyed doing the project as it involved in-depth analysis of the annual reports of two competitor companies. It also involved decision-making, as we had to compare earning and performance ratios, to be able to draw a conclusion as to which company is performing better and paying their shareholders well.

I became more confident of choosing finance as my domain to specialize in after I worked on this project, as I realized that I was good at analyzing reports and also loved every bit of working on it. This is the best one can gain when taught by greats in any field. They will install in you the required confidence and equip you with relevant basics to dive deep into subjects and explore further. This has motivated and further consolidated my decision to specialize in finance.

 The main aim of this course is to enable us to read and interpret financial reports and be able to draw conclusions about a firm’s performance. The immersion model of learning at MYRA comes along with a compelling need to perform, as we finished a course that is taught over duration of three months within two weeks. By the end of the course my perspective towards accounting had totally changed, as I now look at it as an imperative and significant tool that is essential for decision-making. Be it as a manager, shareholder or a potential investor, accounting is a critical instrument that is required to judge and evaluate a firm.

This course gave all of us an insight to the fundamentals and primary principles of financial accounting. According to me, there is no better professor who could have given us a sense of both, the theoretical as well as the practical application of accounting. I cherished each and every class that I sat in and made sure that I was right in the first row. I could only conclude by saying that I thank MYRA for putting in the effort to get an amazing and experienced professor to teach us this subject, and equip us as future managers with the knowledge of financial accounting.

Mohita Vijay Kumar [PGDM-1]