It is that time of the year where our bonus is distributed. Bonus for teachers like me in the form of thanksgiving from students who cross the final finishing line into the IIMs, Law schools, IITs etc. This month is the month of IIMs and other B-schools.
Here is an open letter to all the bright students who are converting the calls. My whatsapp, mailbox, FB is full of those beautiful messages of ‘thank you, sir’. It is a very sweet moment. A moment of gratitude too. I do try and reinforce a message or two to the best of my understanding of life. This is just a public sharing of the same.
Dear IIM cracker-
First of all, congratulations. There are very few selection processes that are as solid and holistic as the IIM selection processes. Notwithstanding the I might have, you have cracked one of the toughest set of hurdles and made it to an IIM or top B-school. Congrats!
A chapter of your life ends here. A new one starts. Here are some suggestions. May be, some of these are not as often heard as I would like them to be –
1. Dream. Don’t optimise :
IIM campuses could be heartless and mindless too. Before you realise that you actually belong there, the place could have begun her NLP on you – the neuro-linguistic programming! It has a way of drilling into you that CGPA is the be-all & end-all of life. That placements is the end of the world. That consulting or investment banking (keeps changing every 3 years) is the only way to be seen as smart! That money and salary defines you and not an expression of your choices.
If you need to escape anything at an IIM, it is all the above. Retain your stupidity. Retain your freshness. Retain your dreams. Chase your fantasies. Don’t surrender your license to retain your life around you. Do what exactly your heart and intuition says. Nothing smarter than them In the long run.
2. Make friends and Retain relationships
The good or bad thing about campus life is that every one knows how much of a ‘dhakkan’ you are. Focus on building friendships and deep connects at the expense of a couple of CGPA points. Dont become the RG-King! These are the last set of two years for fun and masti. Make the most of it without hurting yourself on the academic side. Try new courses. New ventures. New kinds of projects. If any, push yourself to learn the most by trying everything that is new!
3. Play to your own likes, strengths, aptitude :
You will shortly meet dozens of people who are way more smarter than you are in the usual areas that IIMs test – quant, taxation, logic, reading, writing, speaking, finance, marketing, and so on. But, life is everything but these. Life is about passion, courage, imagination, intuition, love, humanity, humility, audacity, forgiveness, relationships and so on. You will find them only when your books are shut and put away. Your real radar must be on. She must be allowed to read the book of life that she is eminently capable of!
Yeh jo zindagi ki kitaab hai
Yeh kitaab bhi kaisi kitaab hai !
However, do note the caveat. You will, in all likelihood, end up marginally lower in your CGPA than you are, so-called, capable of! But, life and joy are the true goals of life itself! When you chase them, every one chases you including money and fame! If anyone tells you anything different from this, do connect him to me! I will take care. You focus on your life. Congrats, yet again!