The KSeeker

In Search of Knowledge…

Preparing for the Mad race!

Posted by Girish Krishnan on November 9, 2006

Of late, there have been some occasions where i have been asked to share some high level Bschool gyan with people.Though that brings to the bigger question of how a mad man can suggest a cure for madness 😉 , i thought it would good to write about some fundamental issues which some of us face while deciding on a career.

Though this post is dedicated to B-schoolers who would be fighting it out in placements the same way as my batch went about some months back, i guess it is fairly applicable to a larger community. I remember being so confused of what jobs to apply and trying to connect it with what i would become when i am 45 (huh, the way it is goin, i may be beaten up to heavenly abodes before that ;-0 ).

This is not (at all!) a serious post and i see this as a macro view on the job market – a treatise titled “A strategic stimulation to picking your employment” than a Framework to quantifiably arrive at a suitable job (..meaning most of it is crap!)

Here’s a lateral take on how “Gautama” finds his job…The name signifies an enlightened personality! Note that Gautama is a fictitious person who has generic skills which is applicable to any industry. If you are  experienced in a particular area, there is already a bias towards some careers because of ur background – the rules could be different in those cases. But Gautama doesnt have any such biases and uses a very simplistic framework to figure out what he wants to do in life!

Gautama looks at only three things in true MECE spirit and asks himself a killer question to decide on the answer. The three things are What to work for?, Where to work?, and How much to work? (the third question is a negative on aspiration, but in real life there are philosophies and then there are boundaries :-)).

Gautama looks at what gives him satisfaction at work
– Innovation
– Power
– Social Impact
(If you study the industries and roles, many of them directly map to one of the above attributes that dominate in there.)

he also looks at various industries’
– Growth
– Margins
– Rate of change
(whats the point in sloggin it out in a low margin industry when there are others which would give you more returns if you put in more work!)

then he looks at the weightage he gives for various parameters in his life
– Work
– Family Life
– Others – travel, art, hobbies
(Everything is a personal choice – If u r happy with ur pick, thats all what matters at EOD)

Finally Gautama asks himself the killer question (credit to one of my “truly enlightened” friends for helping to frame this one in such a subtle manner!)

Am i a curd rice eater or a Paneer eater?

If you are a curd rice eater, there is a particular way in which you would behave in life and it seldom changes! Some jobs are not suited for these category of people, and jobs which give intellectual stimulation quite often may be a good idea to pursue. Paneer eaters have their own way, and appear to be really driven people. They fit into a bigger variety of roles than the curd rice eaters!

Boom! – with this structure and by trying to build on nodes to it, u shud have figured out something (atleast that i am trying to confuse you! he he).

One important aspect i wish to emphasize over here is that one should always start from first principles while deciding on a career. Look at your experience as generic skills gathered than getting stereotyped with the background you come from. May be it will take time getting adjusted to a new career, but what do a couple of years’ difference make in the bigger scheme of things? nothing!!!. I recommend being prepared to take that tradeoff when you make a decision.

Now for the execution part – Irrespective of the category you fall into, there are two serious mistakes you could commit.
– Being unaware of the opportunities around
– Not really wanting/(being committed to) what you aim at.

This principle is generally applicable to many things in life, esp for people who have the ability to get something which they aim at. For them it is fear of commitment than fear of failure that poses the whether or not to pursue an option question!. (Now, Joey would get confused at that statement!) It is important to really want something and then go for it on full steam, than be apprehensive of the process that gets u in or thinking about what would happen after you get the job.

So much for fundaes, now let me tell you something worthwhile – unlike some of us, “Gautama” would have pretty much figured this out the during his early days of his Bschool life or even before that 🙂 But again, “late” is always good start, and may be the best of starts (in true Shawshank style!)….For now you are trying to regain lost ground and that definitely gives “focus”!


2 Responses to “Preparing for the Mad race!”

  1. crestosssa said


    I was surfing the web and i saw this site, pretty cool.
    Currently im running and adult site:Reachton
    k, just want to say hi 🙂
    Can i link you from my site? im looking for quality content like yours. If no let me know if i can add u in exchange for a montly fee or something.

  2. Music-Band said


    I was surfing the web and i saw this site, pretty cool.
    Currently im running and adult site:Reachton
    k, just want to say hi 🙂
    Can i link you from my site? im looking for quality content like yours. If no let me know if i can add u in exchange for a montly fee or something.

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