Thursday, 31 July 2014

My summer internship experience at ICICI Bank

ICICI Bank - Bandra Kurla Complex
As I was en route Pune from Raipur to start my internship at ICICI Bank, I had no idea what to expect from the days which lay ahead. Being a fresher, I feared that my concept of ‘the office life’ would be far from reality. However, it was a necessary pill to be consumed as an MBA course would be incomplete without getting a taste of life at work. On the other hand, my internship at ICICI Bank could end up being an enriching experience which could change my perspective on a lot of things. With these thoughts in mind, I set foot into my office.
The first day began with a meeting with my mentor who discussed what his team in ICICI’s Pune branch looked into, what my project was about and what were his expectations from the project. This was followed by a quick round of introductions with the team I would eventually share my lunch and several rounds of ‘chai’ with in the coming weeks. Thus began my story at ICICI.
The first week simply went in figuring out how my office functions and how I could make any useful contribution with my project to an institution like ICICI. As the days passed, I started developing a better picture of what the project required. My mentor’s ideas and experience helped a great deal in this process as did the insights which came in from different members of the team. It was like trying to fix a complicated jigsaw puzzle, which seems impossible but acts as a trigger to the brain waves.
Each day of my summer internship at ICICI was a learning. Getting to see how the corporate finance division of a bank like ICICI functions was no less than a once in a lifetime opportunity. Concepts which I had come across in the textbooks of Financial Management in my first year at IIM Raipur started coming to life. It helped me appreciate the practicality of those concepts better. However, my most important learning was not concerned with understanding finance. It revolved around understanding people and witnessing how leadership helps drive results. I learnt some of my most important lessons so far on human behaviour through my interactions with ICICI Bank’s customers and by observing my team members. These takeaways would never become a part of my project report or my final presentation but they did become a part of an important chapter of my life.
The internship on the whole required nothing short of hard work and resilience. The period was filled with crests and troughs, where the crests were indicative of those moments where I felt I was closer to the project’s objective while the troughs represented the moments when I felt I was away from them. As the internship neared its end, my project managed to take shape and with a few nights spent burning the midnight oil, it reached a successful completion. As I wrapped it up with a final presentation to my mentor and the evaluating panel of ICICI Bank, I was left with a mixed feeling of happiness and a want for more. I could not help but feel that I could have done more and there were instances where I was surprised I managed to accomplish certain difficult feats. Perhaps, it was a normal phase to go through.
A significant chapter of my MBA life had come to an end. However, it lay the foundation to a number of new beginnings, some which I have already started exploring and some which will be explored when the time comes. But there is one advice which I had received from my mentor which I will carry forever, “Don't be afraid of taking a path less trodden. Sometimes they are the ones that bring you closer to your life’s goals”. 
This article is written by Anwesha Dasgupta, of PGP 2013-15. She can be contacted at pgp13067.anwesha@iimraipur.ac.in



Union Budget discussed at IIM Raipur

From L to R:  Prof.Dawra, Prof.K.KRay, Mr.Pradeep Kumar, Mr.Varshney, Mr.Tarun Mishra, Prof.B.S.Sahay, Mr.Anurag Garg, Prof.Pal, Prof. Ashish Garg, Prof.Dash

Union Budget the “Grand Slam” event for Government of India was scheduled to be declared on 10th July this year. It is not that every year people are not excited about the union budget being declared, but this year it was special. New Government , new hope , new aspirations all was in the air regarding this year’s Union Budget. Seeing this enthusiasm in general public and students, IIM Raipur under the vision of our Director, Dr.B.S Sahay and the Finance department of IIM Raipur , we organized the “Union Budget Week” where numerous activities related to Union Budget were being planned.
Building on the excitement that was already there, first event of the week was Pre-Budget Discussion on 7th July 2014 where students presented their views on theme “Expectation from Union Budget 2014-15”. This was a student driven activity and the complete event was being organized by Finatix (Finance Club of IIM Raipur) under the guidance of Finance Department of IIM Raipur. Five panels having a mix of students from both first year and second year PGP, discussed about their expectations from the budget in particular sectors assigned to them. The sectors mainly covered were Agriculture and Rural Development, Infrastructure and Industry, Social Sector, Financial Sector and we had a special panel to discuss about the Taxation (including direct, indirect and corporate tax etc.). The first 20 minutes of this session were about the expectation from the budget in that particular sector followed by the question and answer round with the audience. Eminent faculty from department of Finance and Economics of IIM Raipur were also present in the discussion and gave their valuable insight about different sectors. Students of IIM Raipur actively participated in this discussion and had very good learning experience.
Between all the excitement, we also had budget bites being circulated daily to the students regarding different terms used for better understanding of Union budget.
On 10th July 2014, everyone in the country was excited to know what is there in the black briefcase held by the Finance Minister. From a common man to the people of the corporate sitting in their board rooms, everyone was excited about the changes that the new government was going to put on the table. We at IIM Raipur leveraged this excitement in students and had a special screening of Budget to see live in action as to how the dreams of 1.25 billion people are being unfolded by our Finance Minister. By afternoon government unveiled their plans for next 9 months before the next budget in Feb 2015.
Having heard the expectation of the students from the budget and seeing the budget being unfolded live, it was very important to know the impact and outcome of budget from the experts themselves. To have a critical analysis about budget and its impact, we at IIM Raipur organized a post budget discussion on the theme “Putting India on High Growth Trajectory”. To grace this occasion we had many eminent dignitaries from Industry, Government and Academia. It was an enriching experience to know that how each announcement in the budget has an impact on the business environment  and what was the rationale behind taking a particular decision by Union Government. This discussion not only widened the horizon of students learning with experts touching different aspects of the budget, but it also gave the audience insight of how experts see budget as one of the most important event in India’s business calendar. This event got a huge media coverage both in print and electronic media across India.  
After pre and post discussion were over, a brainstorming quiz was organized by Finatix (Finance Club of IIM Raipur).This quiz included  questions from on the budget terminology , latest changes in budget and some interesting facts about history of union budget in India. This gave students a very good opportunity to test the knowledge that they garnered during past one week. We saw huge participating from the students of IIM Raipur.
It was the starting of academic session 2014-15 and being management student , it would not have being a better start by learning about how the budget plays an important role in the life of an management student. Be it Operations, Finance, Marketing, HR , Consulting or IT , students interested in every domain learned that how important it is to know what Government vision for the country. This Budget Week helped us understand how Macroeconomic factors can affect the day to day working of tea stall owner to a big corporate houses.
Being part of the organizing team and conducting full week of activities related to the budget was a very exciting expedition. Learning that we got from these events were innumerable.
See you in Feb 2015 for another exciting week on Union Budget 2015-2016

This article is written by Gurjot Singh, Co-Ordinator of FINATIX (Finance Club of IIM Raipur) of PGP 2013-15. He can be contacted at pgp13081.gurjot@iimraipur.ac.in
   

Sunday, 13 July 2014

Orientation of Batch 2014-16

IIM Raipur welcomes the new batch of PGP and FPM.

Like us, they received a grand orientation programme of four days with a lot of activity, guest lectures from well-known people in the industry and some exciting outbound programs. Here is what it was like.
Ritualistically, the students were hauled to learn some basics of yoga by Dr. Siddhi Sharma. It prepared them for the busy day ahead.
Day1:
Mr. Kewal Handa, former Managing Director, Pfizer Ltd., and Member BoG, IIM Raipur was the chief guest for the occasion. He was the first imminent personality that the students had the opportunity of interacting with. He told them about important leadership traits like team building and blending in a diverse group.  Next, Mr. Navin Tandon, General Manager, South East Central Railway delivered the Keynote Address. Maintaining a positive work-life balance is important for all round growth of an individual was his advice to the gathering.
Prof. B.S. Sahay, Director, IIM Raipur, addressed the students next. He informed the students about the vision of the Institute and stressed upon the importance of research for a world class management institution. He encouraged the students to develop “Skill, Scale and Speed” which are the key ingredients for achieving all round development. Prof. PRS Sarma, Chairperson PGP introduced the core faculty of the Institute. Prof. Vinita Sahay, Chairperson (FPM), introduced the FPM programme and Prof. Sanjeev Parashar, Chairman Placement, proposed a vote of thanks ending the inauguration ceremony.
Next the students met Ms. Neeta Dumre, former goalkeeper of Indian Hockey Team and  Mr. Nikhil Sahni, Senior President, Yes Bank. The day concluded with an outbound programme by Praxis-EL which was filled with fun, frolic and games.


Day 2:
Mr.Abhijit Ghosh, President and Chief Business Officer, Religare Finvest Ltd. commenced the second day of the orientation programme. He emphasized on developing a culture of objectivity rather than subjectivity among teams and urged the students to stay focussed at all costs.  Mr. Ghosh’s address was followed by a session on ‘How to make India competitive and the role of management graduates’ by Mr.Anurag Goel, Member, Competition Commission of India (CCI).
Swamy Vyomapada Dasji, ISKCON, Bhilai Outbound Programme had a session with students on “Values and Ethics in Professional Life.” Following the inspiring sessions, the students were engaged in a series of outbound activities aimed at building leadership and team spirit.
Mr. Arunava Lahiri, COO, Monnet Ispat & Energy Ltd addressed the students on ‘preparing and heating for industrious life’. “Try to become a transformational leader rather than a transactional manager” was the advice from Mr. Lahiri to the students.

Day3:
The day started with a session by Mr. Umesh Jain, Chief Executive Officer, NSE Infotech Limited. His address was centred on holistic learning. Mr. Jain concluded his address by advising the students to find ways to contribute positively to their institute. The session was followed by a very high energy business simulation conducted by Praxis EL Training & Consulting Pvt. Ltd. The exercise focused on the merits of collaboration over competition.  The students were taken through a psychometric profiling test and given a report of their core personalities.
The outbound programme was followed by an interactive session with Mr. Amit Agarwal, Secretary, Technical Education, Government of Chhattisgarh. He stressed upon the importance of team-work and advised students to be just and fair in their decision making as managers in future.
After this session, Dr. Konidala Kumar, Head (HR), Jayaswal Neco Industries addressed the students on “Building Humane Attitude for Success in Management Career”. In an interactive session with Prof. Vinita Sahay, Chairperson-FPM, the students learnt the difference between the manager and the leader. She encouraged them to find their vision.
The day concluded with the grand finale of the outbound programme series, the new students did a “Fire Walk” and walked over a bed of burning coals to illustrate the power of our thinking.
Day 4:
The day started with a session by Prof. Sanjeev Prashar, Chairman Placement, IIM Raipur on ‘Expectations of the corporate from the budding managers.’ This session was followed by another interactive session on ‘Managing Self’ by Prof. Umesh Bamel, IIM Raipur.
The guest for the subsequent session was Mr. Ashank Desai, Founder, Mastek Limited. He congratulated the students of the new batch for becoming a part of IIM fraternity. The highlight of his address was 3 H’s namely - Heart, Head and Hands. Heart symbolizes values, head symbolizes intellect and hands tell about the ability to work. ‘We should take our decisions by effectively using these 3 H’s’, he said.
The next session was based on ‘The Contemporary Management Education’ and it was conducted by Prof. Satyasiba Das, IIM Raipur. Mr. Vimal Chawda, Chairman and MD, VNR Seeds, took a session with the students on ‘Addressing challenges in Business.’ He advised the students to make a thorough study before beginning any new venture. The valedictory address was given by Mr. K.K. Sarda, Chairman and MD, Sarda Energy and Minerals Limited. Mr. K.K. Sarda’s address was centred on quality, commitment and ethics. He said that adverse situations will come, but with our will power we can overcome them and realize our dreams. “Adversity is not a challenge, it’s an opportunity. If your soul controls your mind, your life would be better. Believe in yourself and act on your instincts. ” he said. 
With these inspiring and encouraging words, the students of batch of 2014-16 began their journey at IIM Raipur. Wishing them all the very best!

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