Category Archives: education

Social Media and Learning and Development

Geeta Bose of Kern – a learning solutions firm interviewed me recently for Lionsher.com the “learning den” for Learning and Development professionals and focused on asking me Is social media hype or reality? and the way it can add to the learning process.

An avid blogger, a twitter-addict, with 1000 friends on Orkut and an enviable fan following on Facebook, Gautam is a social media and network junkie. But when asked how he’d like to categorize himself, Gautam Ghosh says, “my foremost identity is as an HR professional.” Those who know Gautam describe him as the “Face of HR blogging” in India as well as the global community. This young man has successfully connected the dots between HR, learning and social media. He believes that “learning happens by doing and sharing!”

Gautam has rich experience in the corporate world through his journey as an HR professional in organizations like DELL, Deloitte, HP, Satyam, as an independent OD and Training consultant as well as a consultant with 2020 Social. “I see everything kind of fitting into a larger umbrella of saying how do we make a more human organization,” he explains. By ‘human’ he refers to an organization that is open and transparent. Gautam believes that all his L&D work, HR professional work, HR journalist work, and his social media work belongs to the larger umbrella of building an organization that is more open, transparent and human. “While it wasn’t really obvious when I started off the journey but now when I look back, that’s one thread that has continued throughout the journey,” he adds thoughtfully.

The best part is that the folks at Lionsher.com went over what I said and made some models which explain beautifully better than my words 🙂

You can read the full interview here.

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On multiple intelligences

The Disadvantages of an Elite Education – By William Deresiewicz (hat-tip: Mansij)

The existence of multiple forms of intelligence has become a commonplace, but however much elite universities like to sprinkle their incoming classes with a few actors or violinists, they select for and develop one form of intelligence: the analytic. While this is broadly true of all universities, elite schools, precisely because their students (and faculty, and administrators) possess this one form of intelligence to such a high degree, are more apt to ignore the value of others.

Coaching classes for CAT exams in India

Someone once told me that more people enrolled in IT training academies in India in the 1980s and 1990s than the people that TCS, Infosys, Wipro, Satyam and HCL combined employed totally !

I’m not sure about that, but we know what Rashmi means when she says the same about coaching classes for MBA exams.

A huge industry — mostly headed and fuelled by IIM alumni — has convinced lakhs of students that if they practise long enough and hard enough, they stand a chance of making it. It is a myth that classes actively propagate and one that students choose to believe.

I have nothing against coaching (yes, I did take up a correspondence course and gleefuly passed on the material to two siblings who also cleared CAT :))

But the point is, God helps only those who help themselves. And so it is with coaching.

Practising shortcuts and solving mock papers can give those with the basic ability an added edge. But there is no way it can phenomenally improve your basic verbal, quantitative and reasoning skills.

Qualities which, frankly, are lacking in a large number of CAT aspirants.

The number of e-mails I receive, with incredibly poor English, asking for advice on ‘how to make it to IIMs’ would be amusing, if it weren’t so sad. A couple of 100 percent real (unedited) samples:

“I am engineering student , what is the next step to select for my further studies.Is it better to continue my engineering studie s or i go to business studies which is the beter one”

“I’M EXPECTING SOME SKILLFUL AND EXPERIENCED KNOWLEDGE FROM U WHERE TO ENROLL FOR COACHING ETC. AND WHT MY REGULAR EXERCISE SHOULD BE..”

Is there any real hope for such aspirants?