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Showing posts from May, 2008

On Elusive Answers

It has happened quite often with me that I seem to be on top of a problem, one that seems simple and very ‘familiar’. So familiar in fact that we seem to have the answer at the tip of our tongue but just can’t seem to put our finger on it only to find out later that the simple question that we had asked was actually quite a complex one. I have mentioned two such question I am trying to answer at the end of this post.

But to illustrate this problem i'll give you an example:

I always thought as a kid: organizations are simple, people get together decide on what work to do, make great teams together and get the work done.

My MBA has given me a broader perspective. In order to make organizations run a few other things you need to do are:

1) Come up with the money
2) Research and design the right product
3) Decide who they are going to sell it to
4) How much they are going to sell it for such that with the price that is set the company makes the most money while not scaring away the customer…

On how to de-compartmentalize

A course I recently finished taught me something fundamental. It taught me how to learn: when you read a chapter every word of it every sentence and every page should relate, it should also relate to whatever you have known and add fundamentally to your understanding and you should be able to carry with you a summarized abstract form of the chapter.

If you don’t do this you compartmentalize your chapter like you compartmentalize people (see my post on Compartmentalization) and so the chapter stands on its own in your mind not relating to much else.

So the trick to “de-compartmentalizing” the chapter is to work as hard as possible, to think as much as you can about that chapter while you are reading it, till the point where you cannot make any furthur deductions from the chapter.

The same applies to de-compartmentalizing with career, socializing, being alert of your surroundings. Every thing in your life should relate to everything else that you know to the degree that you are capable of…

On compartmentalization and the resulting sub-optimal performance

I coined a new term: “compartmentalization” and discussed it with a few people and then another term “sub-optimal”.

Both these terms stand for concepts/phenomenon which I am sure a lot of you are aware of although you probably don’t identify them with these words.

Compartmentalization arises from the fact that when we meet different people we assume different roles to some degree. So for example the way we behave with our family might be different from how we behave with friends and that might be a little different from how we behave with children and so on.

There are also occasions when we come across powerful people for example a professor of ours with great knowledge of a subject and an irritation with mediocrity, or a job interview which may require the best performance or the problem in interaction people have with those they are infatuated with, and so the list goes on.

So while in each of these roles you can perform best if you maintain your comfort level and assume to treat each…

Explanation of the movie 'Revolver'

I saw the movie for the umpteenth time last night and I finally got it.

This is what the movie says:

1) In every game and con there is always a victim and there is always an opponent. It's good to know when you are the former so you can become the latter.

2) But the question is how do you prepare yourself for this game?

3) You only get smater by playing a smarter opponent.

4) The smarter the game the smarter the opponent

5) Checkers is an example of such a game. Chess is a better game. Debate is an even better opportunity to learn and so on.

6) But the question is where does the game stop? or one can ask what is the smartest game one can play?

7) The answer according to the movie is: "The game of con you play with yourself".

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The text below has been added on 3 Dec 2008 and is based on a comment posted on October 30, 2008, at time 4:12 PM. I have only recently understood what this person meant and it is …