Wednesday, December 01, 2004

Entrepreneurship

Yesterday the classes on entrepreneurship started. The prof is a well known for strategy/entrepreneurship. While every prof has ditched Enron and other kind for their unethical practices, this guy actually supports them. He says they were just taking advantage of the regulatory institutions that were not market-based, that is growing as fast as the industry. While it was all built upon a hype and lies, they attracted talented engineers for the pay and for the illusion of 'value addition' and other management buzzwords. So, he says, they were the best entrepreneurial companies at that time.

He also said something about GE, how the company was growing only at 3-4% and were not adding any value to the stockholder and hence, Jack Welch was correct in laying off some tens of thousands of people. For the sake of the stockholders and the economy, it was a 'sacrifice' to be made and not all were affected, many got jobs in other companies while some perished, as is natural in a capitalistic structure and is a side-effect the country had chosen. Did they get jobs at the same level as before? I think most of them were underemployed. Isn't it waste?, a drag on the economy?. Call me a commie but to raise the returns a few stockholders, was it really necessary to axe all of them at one go? (well, many chops were required). As he truly pointed out, some deadwood will be eliminated in capitalism, but we are talking about people here, not just the employees but families dependent on that employee, children waiting to get into college, sick family members, etc etc. I read a lot of articles about how the top managers got a golden-parachute but the low-end workers and many engineers were kicked out with a soiled boot!

That things aside, we have a case to present today. I had one bad experience previously and did not want to get affected a second time. Another case of 'Murphy's Law', not going to talk about it. I just offered to summarise the readings and the case in two presentations and it turned out it was the whole exercise itself. The other two guys relieved me and started to refine and clean up the presentation. No offense to the people who worked, but they must have changed about 15% of what I had done. Whatever they may say, even if one word is changed in a presentation you did, it hurts! Is it possessiveness or ego? This is not the complete stuff, someone has to present it tomorrow. The last few presentations I made, it was not so bad, this too must go the same way. I can't keep on depending on the team mates to present everytime and me just standing idle. Couldn't sleep tonight after having stayed up till 2 pm and having 2 cups of tea. I just hope I don't sleep in the class tomorrow.

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