Day 1 kicked off pretty early around 9.00AM with a talk by Mr.Anil Mukim, MD of Gujarat Informatics Limited. The talk started off with a touching presentation on the devastation caused by the massive earthquake that hit Bhuj in northern Gujarat three years ago, and the consequent relief and reconstruction work going on there. His talkcentered on the theme of “Perception Vs Reality”. The IAS officer that he was, and a top administrator we were told, he dealt at length on the various perceptions that people usually have of the Govt servants, and how they can be quite different from the actual reality. And winding up, he exhorted the management grads out here to seriously consider a career in the Civil Services so they could implement all their learnings on a much larger canvas.

One of the good questions which i can recall being asked by a student was ” How can volunteerism help & how should it be encouraged?” Pretty relevant to our crowd here @ PG. Mebbe folks active in community service across delhi and hyderabad should take on this onus of sensitizing the rest of our junta ?

Along with these Panel Discussions, there were several games/events scheduled for the day. Obviously, one cant make it to all the places at the same time ? Here’s a brief list of the events that happened today.

1)The McKinsey & Company Stratosphere Game:

Close to 60 teams participated in the prelims and 20 qualified for the finals. In Team Confluence’s words ” The game will be played real-time and will test the ability of participants to keep all business dimensions in mind, be it in finance, marketing operations or management of information technology while taking decisions. “

2)The Grey Cell ITC Simulation Game:

The prelims saw a huge number of teams (100) battling it out for 20-25 final slots. In Team Confluence’s words, ” It will be a real time simulation of a marketing situation where the teams will compete with each other on certain parameters pertinent to the circumstances. It provides the students with an interactive environment that simulates the market and the forces that operate in it.”

3)The ONGC Opulence Quiz:

This Operations quiz again saw over 100 teams of two each competing. Questions involved identifying punch lines, spotting ads, etc. And probably keeping in mind the international participants, quite a few questions were not India specific.

4)The GIL Technocrat Case Contest:

A case study contest revolving around a case that was already presented to the teams on the issues facing a Govt organization (GIL) aiming to increase IT investment in the state, while focussing on issues specific to Gujarat such as domestic law & order, infrastructure, etc.

5) Finomenon Paper Contest:

A paper presentation contest that revolved around the topic of ” Impact of FDI in emerging markets”

6) ONGC Opulence Paper Contest:

A paper presentation contest that revolved around the topic of “Retails Operations”.

Post Lunch saw a McKinsey & Company Corporate lecture on the topic “Made In India”. The speaker was Mr.Ramesh Mangaleswaran, Principal, McKinsey India. He spoke at length on issues pertaining to manufacturing and export in India and how and why India can and should change fast. And as is typical of most such talks by consult majors, his presentation was majorly interspersed with loadsa of facts and figures on how India can achieve increased exports in manufacturing and how easy it really is, if the Govt really had the will to go ahead. Overall, a very interesting presentation as it sure put quite a few things in perspective. Something like saying that it never is India Vs China, rather it is and has to be India & China. Like i said, a very good presentation that i believe most people would have enjoyed sitting through.

Evening saw a keynote address by Prof. Yasheng Huang, MIT Sloan School of Management. Prof Huang is the author of a recent Best-seller “Selling China”. He spoke very eloquently on Hard & Soft infrastructures in Chinese Economic Growth. His presentation was again one that was quite engrossing and insightful. And yes, it isn’t daily that you get to hear to a Sloan Prof :p. Something must be added here. As is the standard operating procedure after every such presentation, there usually comes a time when the speaker as well as the junta at large have to endure silently. It can also be a time when there is more understanding of the issue than during the entire presentation.

Its called the Q & A session. Some questions were such that the speaker was found squirming in his seat ;), well, almost ? ….one particular question was atleast three times the length of time (and complexity) than the answer. Beat that ?

The keynote address was followed by a panel discussion on “Comparative Advantages of India & China as FDI destinations”. The panel included Mr.Ramesh Mangaleswaran (Principal, McKinsey), Sunil Parekh (Chief Corporate Advisor Zydus Cadila), C.V.Ranganathan(Former Indian Ambassador to China), Prof.Sebastian Morris(IIMA) and Prof.Yasheng Huang(MIT Sloan).

Other events for the day scheduled are the Greysell ITC Simulation game finals and the GIL Technocrat quiz .

And now, am waiting for what i believe a LOT of junta out here are now waiting for. No, its not sleep ? Its Dandiya night here @ IIMA and people are making sure they are gonna be present throughout. Thankfully, the Dandiya is scheduled to start early, i.e. 11pm ?

Signing off for the day……………….. ?

Dateline:23rd October, 2004

Place: IIM-Ahmedabad,TATA Confluence 2004

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