Monday, July 13, 2009

Sam, I Can’t take any more of it….One more word, you are fired!!

Caution: Read till the end…

Scene 1: @IIML
Wow…..I’m amazed, Thrilled ...” I have got the best corp. fin role on the campus”...Placements this year has been fantastic and it parallels…parallels…No , I can’t remember a year where IIML had such an amazing placement with 575 offers on slot 0!!....

Scene 2: @ my firm
Thomas: Hey Vivek, This is Jagadeesh Balu and he is the new management trainee under you , he is a IIML pass out
Vivek: Hey Balu!! Welcome to the firm (“God, The culture of calling with the last name has again started….I’m not Balu…I’m Jagadeesh :)”)

Scene 3: @ My desk
Vivek: Here’s the model which you are going to work on …Estimate all the values and come up with an NPV for the project
Me: (After working with the model diligently for about couple of days ) : But Vivek…This model seems to contain some basic flaw..This is not apt to value a technology firm…This has been created for manufacturing firms..Lot of tinkering work needs to be done in order to work on this!!
Vivek : We know our model ..This model has been working perfectly all this time…Do as directed
Me : ???

Scene 4: Five years latter: @IIML campus, as a recruiter for finals
Me: So why do you want to join our firm??
Ravi: (Blah blah blh…)
(Some Q and A does not change over years and this was one such standard ‘q’..I got a standard answer)
Me : Good!!

Scene 5: At the corporate headquarters(A grp level meeting abt an acquisition) : My first meeting with CFO of the firm
Pete Sampras (CFO): The competition has intensified and unless we diversify ,our bottom lines are going to be under serious threat…Hence this decision of acquisition...ML has given us a acquisition price of $25 billion (By this year, the value of M and A deals by Indian firms has become very much comparable to the developed world)………………………………………………(He keeps on speaking for about 2 hours , half of which goes above my head and remaining 25% through my ears and the rest 25 somehow reaches my brain!!)….Any views gentleman
Me (I rephrased whatever the CFO said , jargonized whatever the CFO told ,took in some numbers to my help)…….and hence we are in for a great run after we acquire this firm…
Pete : (He would have definitely understood that I was beating around the bush) : Excellent!!

Scene 6 : Ten more years later , A grp level meeting abt an acquisition : My first meeting with a group head….(didn’t I mention??…I’m the CFO)
Me (CFO): Sam..I would love this company and would be ready to pay any price for this…
Sam: But Sir…Paying a premium of $2billion for such a stock might not make too much of a sense..(He starts quoting a lot of facts , numbers and his argument was more than convincing I would say)
Me: But I love this firm…Acquiring this firm will make us the topmost in the industry..(As a CFO , obviously I had much more data and numbers to justify my stance….Another half an hour of elaborate discussion)
Sam: This is not fair Sir…This is going to erode shareholder value..This seems to be a decision purely driven by ego
(Partially he was right….But his last response was so blunt and it hurt me a lot!!)
Me: Sam, I Can’t take any more of it….One more word , you are fired!!
Sam: (Keeps on continuing)
Me:Sam..Sam (My tempo starts rising)

I was shouting at the top of my voice but I could hear somewhere somebody yelling my name and this voice also seems to be increasing all the time…
There was also some music playing around me…
God Gosh…..MY ALARM!! How long has it been ringing…What is the time….I opened my room door …

Arun: Dei, How long will I be banging at your door …Its already 9.30 in the morning and you have Prof Vipul’s class at 9.45…You were telling you might be having a surprise quiz

Me : Coming back to my senses ……..Realizing that I’m in my room , I started to rush to the class not to miss the lecture of one of the best professors in the campus!!
The sad story of classes, quizzes, exams continue!!

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