‘I am a mother of 3 kids and at IIM A I am living a dream I left behind many years ago’ – Nita Menon – Best50
Nita Menon has been chosen as one of the top 30 most employable candidates across schools and programmes in India for the Class of 2015. She has one of the best 30 profiles among the 66 final round candidates who participated in the Best50 competition. The final 30 were chosen based on a combination of scores for the write-up below and the candidate’s resume.
What have you done at your business school which makes you stand out from the crowd?
My focus at IIM A has been only three things: –
1. Learn as much as possible from the outstanding world class professors here
2. Focus on building relationships. A friend earned is much more rewarding than a grade earned
3. Lead several cultural activities of the PGPX batch. For instance, our batch was the first in the last 10 years to win the trophy for the cultural fest at IIM A – many thanks to my wonderful batch mates – all seasoned managers with more 10 years of experience taking the time to practice a few dance moves and thereby prove that we can still rock the stage!
What have you done in your life that you are the most proud of?
Leading my life with a high focus on integrity and believing in my skills. At one point in my career I was offered a significant reward from a vendor to approve their solution. I worked in an environment wherein this was the norm. But somehow, neither the conversation, nor the offer appealed to me. It was on that day that I realized my potential to perform came from the confidence I had in my own skills. I walked away from the vendor’s proposition without a hitch – knowing fully well that this could end up wrongly for me and my career. I ensured the vendor went through the same due diligence process as the other vendors. The result today everyone I worked for and the vendor remember me for my high focus on ethics and I have a great relationship with them. Lesson learnt – it is difficult to stay on the good path; but it is surely rewarding if you choose to stay there.
If there was one good aspect about your school that you could take back after you graduate –
The relationship with the amazing set of colleagues at PGPX at IIM A and the guidance of the world class professors here.
If there was one thing that you could change about your business school, it would be –
An international presence. A gem like IIM A deserves a global stage. Someday in the future I would like for everyone in the world to know of this school and the potential it holds.
If you had to open a rival social network to Facebook, what would it be like?
In my mind, social networks of every possible kind have been invented and delivered. However the ability to monetize them is where the differentiator lies. I think a good monetization strategy in a social network is where the future of social networks lie. For example, discussions in Facebook amongst friends on the latest movie has the potential to provide analytical data that could be feedback to movie makers. The same goes with discussions on the clothes you are wearing in a picture or the recent place you travelled to. All of this generates data – which could be monetized if mined and curated correctly. This is where I would focus my attention on – if I had to engage in the social network game.
Who are you – Express yourself
My achievements are simple. Nothing outstanding here. A B.Sc in Statistics – amongst the top three in the college and perhaps amongst the top few in the University of Mumbai – I have always had excellent academics. I have done good in sports too – competing on school, college and district levels in athletics and racquet sports. I went on to live in the USA for 15 years and exceled there too. From job to job – till I ended up being part of the management team of a very successful product. And then I started my own firm – and did well in that too. Ran it for four years successfully making more money than I was making in the corporate world. I am also a mother to three kids (triplets in fact). And now I am at IIM A; living a dream I left behind many years ago.
So what is so special about all that? In a population of close to 7.5 billion people, there are probably several million people that have done better than me at all that. So if I discard all that baggage and look beyond – what have I truly achieved? And as I introspect – below are my true achievements.
A circle of true friends : Amongst my family, my class mates, my colleagues, my superiors and my clients. Far more reaching and fulfilling than any certificate gathering dust in my cupboard. A lively and truly commendable set of friends each of whom I could call on to help me with any need at any hour.
A reputation of credibility and strong ethical behavior : It is said when man faces his toughest challenges only then the best or worst of him comes out. And I have had my share of challenges which I am thankful for because every one of them have made me stronger and have helped me establish more credibility and showcase my ethics to the world without which any of my achievement would not have been possible.
The desire to learn and keep learning : Some higher force destined that I have three kids – all at once too. I have triplets – three boys. And though we walk through life thinking we need to teach our kids good lessons – I have learned more from my three boys than from perhaps any book or course. Children develop and learn because they are curious and though we tend to get annoyed with the continuous stream of “Why’s?” – that has perhaps been my biggest achievement and learning from my children. Always question and always learn and therefore always improve. This has helped me distinguish myself in innumerous ways in my corporate and personal life.
And that is what makes me – me. A Circle of true friends, A Credible reputation and A Curiosity to learn.
Meet the rest of India’s 30 Most Employable Management Graduates from the Class of 2015 here