issue dt Oct 13 2008
Making Of An Entrepreneur
STAY HUNGRY STAY FOOLISH
By Rashmi Bansal; IIM Ahmedabad Publication;
pages: 324; Price: Rs 125
The current US financial crisis has many lessons to offer, especially for young B-school graduates. Most of them dream of joining a multinational company after graduation. Only a few dare to tread the unknown path of an ‘entrepreneur’. Some succeed and many fail — this is just how things work. Rashmi Bansal’s book is a compilation of stories of 25 successful entrepreneurs who are alumni of the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIM-A). They overcame all kinds of challenges, including mental, financial, administrative, social and personal.
Bansal, an IIM-A alumnus herself, captures these aspects in fine detail as she presents each case study. While each case is good individually, the author fails to stitch all the varied experiences together into one narrative. Nevertheless, Bansal does bring out the ‘matter of fact’ developments with a lot of objectivity. Each case reflects the seriousness of efforts made by these alumnus in meeting the challenges and fighting for their dream.
Whether it is the story of R. Subramanian’s Subhiksha, Sunil Handa’s Eklavya Education Foundation or Madan Mohanka’s Tega Industries, the author has presented comprehensively the ingredients that go into the making of a successful business person.
The case studies are a good mix of well-known personalities such as Shantanu Prakash of Educomp, Deep Kalra of Makemytrip.com and Sanjeev Bikchandani of Naukri.com, and others such as Anand Halve of Chlorophyll (a brand consultancy) and Vijay Mahajan’s Basix. It is an interesting book, with the author managing to ‘just keep it simple’.
Author’s note: I am a little surprised to see the stories being referred to as ‘case studies’. But otherwise, a very fair review. And the reviewer seems to have actually read the book – not written a quick piece based on the back cover
Incidentally, I was tempted to add a chapter in the end of the book with all the learnings from various entrepreneurs (which might have ‘stitched up the book in a sense). But it did not feel right. I thought, let the reader decide for himself or herself. Different stories resonate with different people… And there is no one ‘formula’ for success!