Life at IIM Indore: A Management Perspective
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts”- Winston Churchill
It was 20th of May 2014; a usual hot evening in a small district in the western part of Odisha. I remained glued to the little smartphone screen to check the results of IIM Indore – one of the most coveted B-schools in the country. The long process which started in October had already acquired an astounding amount of time of my final semester of graduation. When graduation ended, I went to the wait and watch mode.
It is very surprising how small successes can energize a person. It is like some high power energy drink which really takes the fatigue out of your body. It worked amazingly well for me. After tasting an average success in CAT I kept waiting for the shortlists. Believe me there is nothing more painful than waiting. Finally, IIM Indore bestowed its kind blessings on me. And I converted in the first attempt.
The results were out. Yes, I was selected. Elated, exuberated I jumped in joy. Such a happy feeling it was seeing everyone around me showering their blessings and feeling happy and proud for me. Leaving home was painful. I came to this place with a lot of hopes. From the first day itself one could sense the amount of competition in this place. The place was booming with glowing faces of the most talented bunch of students from all over the country who radiated volumes of knowledge much more than the heat radiated by the soaring temperatures due to the raging sun. Yes, finally I was a part of the rat race.
Today I am on the verge of completing one year in the institute. What an amazing experience it has been. Not in terms of amount of knowledge I have gained or the summer placement I have secured. The experience has been phenomenal only because it has given me the broader perspective. I have seen intricate threads being weaved in the most unusual places, intimate relationships being formed between the most unlikely of pairs and the most imperative issues taking a corner seat. The most important lessons that this institute teaches is of the five Ls i.e. listen, learn, leverage, leapfrog and love. In strategy words, it is the five Ls framework.
Every time you find yourself stuck in a critical position, you can always use this framework to find your way out. It is very easy to get disheartened at such a place where the people are so goal oriented and you face such tough competition. If you analyse your position using this framework you will realize, that leveraging your strengths, working on your weaknesses and having self-confidence can fetch you success in the long term.
People generally focus on the two factors: leverage and leapfrog. I was also no different. My prime focus used to be leveraging others’ weaknesses and leapfrogging others’ achievements. But this institute over a year has made me realize success are more about leveraging your strengths and leapfrogging your expectations of yourself. By constantly evaluating myself using the five Ls framework I have always found out answers to the toughest of situations and made my survival easier. Also, this has helped me to keep myself fresh and energetic.
One more key concept I would like to add here is the presence of debt in your life i.e. you being indebted to people for sharing their knowledge. Companies use debt as a leverage. They use other’s wealth to prosper. This concept has far larger implications in real life. Every person on the campus will have some amount of knowledge to share, how so ever miniscule it may be. Gather knowledge from every possible source. Peer learning is the most important aspect of learning. This will help you in getting better in life. Remain grateful to even those people who pointed out your flaws. After-all, he made you aware of your “blind” spot in your Johari Window.
As I write this article I hope that all the new joinees will take up these two years as a learning phase and not get bogged down by the challenges they will face in this institute. After-all, failures are the pillars of success. Tough times extract the best out of a person. This is true only when the person has the confidence to face the storm and carve a way out of the storm. Else, tough times will extract the best “out” of you; what will remain is junk.
Anurag Satapathy is a first year PGP student at IIM Indore. He believes in learning by doing. His cheerful nature is appreciated by all.