The One With Beautiful Beginnings At An IIM

Someone wisely remarked that the most underrated thing in life is a normal day. These normal days look extremely plain & placid to an outsider but are hard to come by at Hel(l). They talk about the beautiful red bricked walls, the quaint greenery or symmetrical maze like lawns. But there never is enough time to sit back and take these all in. In a month I have realised the importance of alarm clocks in life. A slight miss and one could end up missing an early morning quiz, and there are no retakes allowed!

A great mind once proclaimed “Learning never exhausts the mind”, well here one can see future financial experts trading in sleep. We don’t trade in bullion’s, the enigmatic sweet slumber is precious. All the utility analysis is applied to maximise this precious commodity. Giving up breakfast & regular baths are the meager offerings to the MBA Gods, who bless us with few more precious minutes of sleep.

They talk about the lull before the storm, the eerie monotones of silence followed by the great storm. However, this myopic world view does not hold up at IIM Lucknow. Here the great tide of quizzes, the avalanche of assignments or the massive man-made disasters, the CVs are always beckoned by the onslaught of deadlines. Before every exam (the perfect storm) there is a cacophony of opinions, exchanges and frustration. Engineers trying to get the nitty-gritty of balance sheets, CA’s trying to decipher calculus and statistics while the supply demand curve ends up drowning us all. An hour of sleep before the exams is for the privileged, where one ends up writing papers for statistics and business law on the same afternoon. There are some things you learn best in the storm, and some in calm.

Happiness can only exist in acceptance” another great mind proclaimed. Halfway through the gruelling committee selection process, while trying to finish up a selection task, I realised the clock had slowly inched towards 5 in the morning and sleep had vanished from my eyelids. I packed up my stuff, headed towards my room, slept for a couple of hours and stood up for an 8:30 am quiz. The simmering potpourri of discussions in the class over myriad issues ratchets up your appetite for even more knowledge. Our inherent uniqueness and individuality bring out the best in others, as every single being of hell and his qualities are motivation for all others.

Every day is an opportunity to learn something new, experience something different and unlearn something antiquated. Once, we realize it that is when we start appreciating the beauty that lies at the heart of this campus. The red bricked walls symbolize the hard work and perseverance of all the amazing people who come together and make life memorable. All the deadlines, submissions and extra classes are experienced with classmates who bring both competition and camaraderie to the table. Life at IIM-L might be hard, to begin with, but these few lines by Henry Ford summarise it beautifully:

Coming together is a beginning, keeping together is progress, working together is success


A Bio-technologist, Tabla Player, Writer, Data Analyst and now MBA student. A true "jack of all trades and master of none".



Fasih Uddin Ahmed

Shishir that’s a wonderful description of IIM campus life. It reminded me of my days in the military academy some 45 yrs ago. Loved your expression ‘competition and camraderie’. Way to go. Keep it up!

Kamini Singhal

Very well described the beautiful pain of management studies in IIM L. This surely provides an insight to the life captured in the red walls.

Sandeep Saini

Woahh!!! Didn’t know you were this good at writing. I’m coming to you if I need to get review on anything written by me.

Kapil Saini

You are epitome of literary excellence, my friend. A true glance at happening life at hell full of logical brilliance and emotional connect.