Sunday, November 2, 2008

Of being rich (Vs just being vain)

Toothpaste For Dinner


toothpastefordinner.com


The class has some rather interesting characters.


This one Indian cannot stop talking about 'my family business worth millions'. By the end of our first day, everyone knew that the person belonged to a rich family of business people (and that very little brain came along with the money). However, this person compensated for the hollow between the ears by buying food and goodies for all those who cared.

We had a lunch-time talk by the entrepreneurial network the other day. During Q&A, this person started off yet again on 'how I come from a business family worth millions'. The speaker was like 'Wait, do you mean in dollars or rupees?' She fumbled a little and said 'rupees but we have significant investment abroad as well'. By then, she had lost her face. Big-time.

MBA students need to do about 50% of their work in groups - this is the so-called studying and bonding time. Classes are held only for 50% of the working week - they are meant to give out assignments and tasks for groupwork. Groups are given designated study rooms within the school with all kinds of gizmos ever conceived by mankind.

A friend of mine is doing his MBA at Harvard. He sent me an email the other day about what happened when he was doing group study. There was this quiet American guy in his group who seemed to get bored and irritable - he desperately needed a change of scene. 'What are we doing here in this room everyday?' he asked, 'let's do an offsite study session tomorrow'. They agreed to meet at a wharf nearby at whatever time the next day.

When they all showed up, the guy was waiting there in his private yacht. He graciously invited them all in and drove the yacht to the middle of nowhere. Needless to say, all food and drink was plentiful and on him. He even had a mini study room arranged inside his yacht - complete with internet connection and overhead projector. They had an extremely productive session with breaks for snorkelling (he had stocked enough equipment for everyone). They're planning a slumber party in the yacht next.

My friend says that if you passed this guy on the street, you wouldn't look at him twice; his manner was so down-to-earth. Maybe that explains how he got into Harvard.

If only our Indian 'millionaire' could learn a few lessons from him !