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July 15, 2008

Monday is back and we are on work at IFBI. Yes, we have been distributed into groups (5) and allotted a topic each. And we are supposed to give a presentation on the topic given to us. This activity is called as ISAS (Information Search and Analysis Skills). It forms an important part of the PGDBO course and has a value of rating too. It involves the task of searching through the newspapers, information, about the the topic given to us. We are supposed to take only the past 30 days reference and only in rare cases, permitted to go beyond it. Once all articles are collected, we need to assemble them in a scrapbook and hand it over to the faculty. After 2 days, we are also supposed to give a team presentation with a powerpoint show to the class. Everything in the process will be observed and rated accordingly.

5 students are put in each team and there are 5 teams. I am in the 5th team alongwith Anil, Maruti, Aditya and Alex.

The topics that are given are

  • Rural Banking
  • Impact of Technology on Service Industry
  • Retail Revolution
  • Relevance of Customer Service
  • Housing Industry and Employment Growth

Our team, being 5th, has been assigned with the 5th topic- Housing Industry and Employment Growth. We are supposed to submit the scrapbook by 24 July (Thursday) and the presentation will be given on 28 July (Monday). Each person is expected to collect about 5 articles and speak for about 5 minutes. So, 5 people will be speaking for a total of about 25 minutes on 25 articles. Lot of fives in everything. Our team number too is 5.

That was about the ISAS presentations.

Further, the Monthly tests are scheduled to be held on 4th and 14th August. In the first test, the syllabus that will be covered is Basics of Information Technology (BIT), Financial and Mathematical Ananlysis (FMA) and Indian Financial System (IFS). The second test will take care of Overview of Banking (OOB) and also the 2 modules that we will be covering by e-learning through the Learning Management System (LMS) of IFBI, namely, Anti-Money Laundering and Law in Everyday Banking.

So, all the busy schedule of life is going to get busier. And I am so happy for this.

Well, the day began with a review of the previous day’s learnings. The review was given by Anil. He was pretty confident and did a good job. Further, his drawbacks too were analysed and suggestions for improvement were offered. The banking class continued in which we dealt with Asset products like retail loans, overdrafts, letter of credit, etc.

Signing off for the day.

July 16, 2008

Some more momentum gets added with the beginning of a new subject ‘Financial Mathematics and Accounting (FMA)’. This will be dealt by Laxmninarayan sir who is a very experienced and very nice person. All began with financial accounting through an introduction to accounts, conventions, components, etc. Things were a little difficult for the non-commerce students to digest. I am not sure if they have digested it by now or not. That will be known by tomorrow. Accountancy has always been my favorite subject and that’s something which I call as the sexiest thing on the earth.

Yet another important event was scheduled to begin today. Its the preparation for the interview rounds of HDFC Bank. Those students who are interested as well as eligible can also try a hand with getting the career path with HDFC Bank too. The interview will be held shortly and some inputs are being given about the same. After the accountancy class, Rahul sir continued with these points and it was a general introduction to the process.

I came to know just today that there are some people in our batch who are already allocated either ICICI Bank or HDFC Bank in their course offer letter itself. And the remaining students, including me, have to yet go through the selection process for the same. 3 students, all girls, have been placed into HDFC Bank. So, we already had starting doubting the HDFC Bank HRs :). I am yet to find out who is already into ICICI Bank.

I have always had this dream of being a banker. And I always wanted to join a private sector bank due to the enormous growth opportunities as well as competitive nature of work. I have been eyeing ICICI as well as HDFC for a quite long time. I have been very keen on their developments and other things too. My area of interest is retail banking followed by asset management. Both have been a dream place to work, for me. Lets see where I land into.

And yeah, today’s review of yesterday’s class was done well.

From now, there is a need for me to concentrate on the upcoming interview. And yeah, after the class, we had this activity of newspaper reading to collect material for the ISAS presentations. And yes, not to forget, we had a classroom activity of analysing the cheques presented to us and sending them for collection through an appropriate process. Well, things are very interesting in banking. They are very complicated. However, for a person who looks deep and understands the process, he will love it (like me).

Those were all the highlights for the day. In fact, time has started moving faster. I was unable to blog from the institute. And thus, I had to come to this net centre to do it. I always believe that nothing should be kept pending, specially, something thats a daily routine. Else, it will only be a part of the next day and will never get the kind of attention that it needed. I was in the habit of procrastinating. But, I have completely overcome that with a lot of effort.

That was the day. Time to sign off for the night.

July 17, 2008

Today, we have begun with yet another new subject, ‘Indian Financial System (IFS)’. It was a quite normal day. As the routine goes, Mr Raju presented today’s review and he did a nice job covering all the aspects in a decent manner and highlighting the important point. The FMA class followed and we covered more about Accountancy on the areas like journal, ledger, postings, etc. After a tea break, IFS began (which is also taken up by Laxminarayan Sir) with an introduction about the Reserve Bank of India. It is the entity that is the head or boss of the entire financial sector and thus, called as the Central Bank of India. It has been established under the RBI Act of 1934 and came into function from April 1, 1935. The central office (where the governer sits and the policies are formulated) was located in Kolkatta (formerly Calcutta) and in 1937, it has been moved to Mumbai (then Bombay). The present RBI governer is Sri Y V Reddy. RBI was privately owned when incorporated. However, it has been nationalized in 1949 and fully taken under the Government of India.

The preamble of the RBI describes about its basic functions as

“ regulate the issue of Bank Notes and keeping of reserves with a view to securing monetary stability in India and generally to operate the currency and credit system of the country to its advantage.”

Some important roles that the RBI plays are

  • Banker to the Government
  • Banker to the Banks
  • Control and Regulation of Banks and other Financial Intermediaries
  • Foreign Exchange Management
  • Issuer of Currency
  • Formulation and implementation of monetary policies*
  • Publications

* Fiscal policies are framed by the Government while Monetary policies are framed by the RBI

After the class, the OOB class continued where in we learnt about the various financial intermediaries that are operating in the market like Banks, Mutual Funds, Development Banks, Insurance Companies, NBFCs, etc under the organised sector and other entities/persons like money-lenders, bishis, nidhis, chit funds, pawn brokers, etc those fall under the unorganised sector. Its all a very interesting part that we study and I just love this. It has been a passion for me study finance and banking and I am very delighted about all this.

And then, we continued with the interview preparation process. A deeper look into various aspects of interview and the types of questions that would be asked were being analysed alongwith some tips to answer them. Interviews, according to me, are a very funny thing. I personally feel that it depends a lot on the luck of a person. Sometimes, a dullurt who can just impress in 5 minutes of the process is lucky to get through even after doing all wrong things as the interviewer considers him as bold and honest. And sometimes, the best performer fails as the interviewer feels that he is overdoing. A lot depends on the interviewer’s mood too. And also the lines of thought in which he is in. Those who can match those lines of thought are definitely better headed to get in. What appears as positive to someone can appear negative to someone else. It all depends
And after all this, we are now in the process of doing some lab work and research about interviews and HDFC Bank and its products, etc. And will continue with the ISAS activity of collecting newspaper articles soon.

Signing off for the day.

July 18, 2008

A normal simple nice fine cool day has just passed on. As usual, we began with the Banking class. Today’s review was given by an experienced person compared to many of us. As expected, it was a great show covering up each and every point in great details at a good pace. A lot of confidence and energy was exhibited and it was a successful show in all respects.

Further, we have almost come to the theory classes of OOB module today. We are left with a couple of activities and exercises that shall be taken up soon. After the class, we continued with the interview training sessions. Today, we had a discussion about all technical questions relating to banking. All went well. I need to brush up some of the concepts that were learnt in BCom. And then, we continued in the lab. There were some formalities like form filling, etc which was also completed. And now, going ahead for the newspaper collection. We have got the permission to cut the papers to paste them into our scrap book. So, the collection process has begun.

Time is moving at a quick pace. There is a need to recognize its movement and act intelligently. A lot of changes are going to come in the coming few days. These are the defining moments for the future.

Signing off for the day.

July 19, 2008

There are moments in life which we will remain in memory forever. Most of such moments come unexpectedly. And one such moment just got added into my life (and may be, at least a few will remain this for a long time to come). The day began with a review for which Mr Bayya Reddy was called today. It so happened that he was not able to show much enthusiasm in him. At that moment, Laxminarayan sir hinted him to shout out with patriotism as ‘Mera Bharat Mahaan‘. The moment I heard this, I was on my toes to do that. Having been closely associated with the Army, it flows in my blood. I was almost ready to get up from my seat or shout out from there itself.

Luckily, sir instigated, “Can anyone do this and show him?” and I just ran off to the front without waiting for a second. And in a moment, there was a roar of the words ‘Mera Bharat Mahaan‘ and I am sure, it definitely made a difference to everyone’s heart. Its not to tell that I can shout well. Its something that I would like to inform everyone that we are all Indians. That spirit and energy must be in us at each and every time.

It is said in Sanskrit

‘Janani, Janmabhumischa Swargadapi Gariyasi’

It means something like

‘Mother and Motherland are greater than the heaven’

So, a person who doesn’t get excited is .. (fill in the blanks yourself).

After this, we went ahead with the interview related discussions. And then, we had mock interviews. There was a lot of fun and action in the class today. There is situations when we were called to sell some products. There were lot of interactive points. Mock interviews, of course, was the delight of the day.

And then, we had a session on revising BIT (Basics of Information Technology). It was awesome and we had great fun (off the floor :)).

And now, what else, newspaper cutting is on.

Signing off for the weekend and remember, ‘Mera Bharat Mahaan‘ can happen when all Indians join together and show genuine traits like honesty, truthfulness, effort and of course, work with the spirit of contributing greatly towards the value progress of this great nation. The whole world was once upon a time called as ‘Bharatavarsha‘. This proves very clearly what the nation is.

Be proud to be an Indian. Whenever its a question on the name of the nation, ensure that you win it always.

Happy weekend!!