Sunday, June 2, 2013

"The Road Less Taken" - Perspectives on exemplary Transitions from Physics

On a broader note,


Somebody said, I remember, "Always keep yourself in constant touch of inspiration". Whatever heights you climb up to, its that inspiration which drives you even higher, gives you an ideal to strive towards. And then we usually meet people, who no doubt have been performers(at few times) but posses in some sense a complacency which drives them towards a self singularity, slowly moulding them to stop considering giving others a chance of being better than them, degrading their humility, perhaps letting the ignorance creep, which proves a bliss in the end. :-| 



Well now that I am about to complete these five years under the spell of Physics (Applied Physics sounds appealing, right? Doesnt make any difference though) and about to take a detour towards a less physical world of Management, Economics or so, I thought of writing something for people who might wanna walk on such a scarce path. A short inspiration stuffed note. Here I will talk about a bunch who have taken up Physics/Engineering Physics/Applied Physics and then have either forayed in Economics, Business or Management. The fact which I essentially see in such type of transitory success lies in the power of Physics itself. I am not being biased at this moment but Physics indeed stimulates your thought process in dealing with more complexities, allowing to build a broader picture. The armchair retrospective approach which generally Physics employs, nurtures wisdom unlike any other branch I have come across. These inferences perhaps should  not be stated bluntly like I did above but we do have time and space constraints to deal with. 


Lets begin



Took up Physics at Loyola College, Chennai and subsequently went to IIM-A and Harvard Business School. He lastly taught at Wharton, where he prematurely died. He wrote one of finest modern pieces on Developmental Economics, Fortune at the Bottom of Pyramid (Havent read it? Buy it now, read it now). Its been said that Western Economies used people like him to make investments in the then Third world. We are now richer, happier, gadgety and have malls to hang out at. Thanks to him. 







Well he isn't Indian, He is Israeli. There is hardly any name bigger than E M G(with exceptions of Peter Drucker, Michael Porter) in  the Field of Management. Heard of Theory of Contraints? He developed it. I personally know atleast 100 boutique Consulting firms having their complete businesses running on his models. He was based out of Tel Aviv University and wrote few must reads like Critical Chain and The Goal. A Bachelors to PhD in Physics.



Took up Bachelors and Masters in Physics at two IITs and then went to Ohio State Univ for studying Economics. He worked with World Bank and Economic Advisory Council(India) with finally scaling up the Governor ladder at RBI. He is very well known for his firm decisions at his present portfolio and his indifference towards succumbing to Govt. pressures. I dont think he wrote any book(let me know in case you have seen one :)), though the previous Governer (Bimal Jalan) is a fine writer.


Took up Physics at St. Xaviers and IIT Kharagpur, presently Executive Director at Tata Sons (Possibly the biggest corporate position you can ever dream of in India). A must watch/read on Leadership, he has written a bestseller management book, The Case of Bonsai Manager. I have met him once at a Social Entrepreneurship event. Very few guys have that ability to spellbound you in as little time as I got there. He is a management academician in practice, teaches at few IIMs and applies his teachings at this big role he has. Cool. \m/ 


Ah! He is the sexiest of the lot. :) 

This guy is CEO of Groupon India, (havent heard about the firm? sit a little more on the internet, you will). Took up Physics at Hindu College, Delhi University and went to Michigan for Masters in Physics. Worked there on few Internet Start-ups and returned to pursue MBA from ISB. I am in full envy with this guy in particular. Rest all are rather products of a bit different times. Do go through his blog here, 
http://www.ankurwarikoo.com/, Worth following on Quora. :)



Its been said(again), 
"There are two kinds of education, One teaches you how to live, the other teaches how to make a living". 
Does this makes sense? Can Physics really not take care of the second part? Or Is Physics so pure that the quote derogates it like Kanpur pollutes Ganges? Why is that for some money is everything and for some it isnt anything at all? Can there be a balance? I wonder. I dont have answers now. Though I do have few assumptions and I will definitely test them with the help of time. 

PS: This article might appear as an attempt to theorize coincidences, or else a documentation of the road less taken. 











3 comments:

Nakul Gaur said...

Good one Neeraj. Yes, even I firmly believe that one should have a list of inspirations, it prevents you from becoming a total zombie at work!

Also it will be more interesting if you can actually share the work of some of these great minds, and give your take on it too.

Keep it up!

Nakul Gaur said...

Good one Neeraj. Yes, even I firmly believe that one should have a list of inspirations, it prevents you from becoming a total zombie at work!

Also it will be more interesting if you can actually share the work of some of these great minds, and give your take on it too.

Keep it up!

Neeraj Pandey said...

@Nakul Gaur:
Thanks Bhaiya. All the names have link on them, you click them. The fact that they diversified from Science towards different other fields makes it a bit controversial to talk about the work though. :)