Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Of CG and other demons

Another placement season is here. Another season of hope. And despair. Another season of someone ruing the fact that "If my CG was a bit better". It is a thought that is realised a bit too late by most students. And irrespective of all that I might have written earlier, if you are looking for the more materialistic pleasures of life, all you require is a good CG. Like the good old Metallica song, "Nothing Else Matters." With a good CG, a bit of aptitude (now considering you have made it to IIT, this should not be to hard) and smartness (now thats a bit tough, especially if you are one of those good for nothing maggus) nothing can stop you from getting a "good", highly paying job. And no, irrespective of the JEE which filters student (it used to filter students this way, but now apparently it has stopped doing even that) on the basis of their levels of understanding, CG in IIT is more an indicator of your slogging abilities than anything else. While JEE tests your "intelligence" (I wont shy away from use of that word) the exams at IIT are nothing much than testing an ability for rote learning.
The most successful people, they say, are those who are able to change with the times. It means, consequently, that the most successful people are those who dont stick to anything, who are unable to stick to their principles. Surely there are exceptions (and I really respect people who reach the top sticking to their principles) , but thats the general rule and I will stick to it. And are the most successful people also the nicest people? I believe (I just dont think, I believe) that its rarely the case. And the most succesful people are also not the "best" (this refers to being the most talented) people. Success is a combination of many factors, of which luck probably is on the top. I just read one of my most respected seniors (Lets call him B) writing this about another person, one of my better liked juniors (lets call him A) , (and who happens to be one of the best friends of the senior guy) who has just got an offer with one of the top consulting companies, and was close to securing a job in the other big consulting company as well (Forgive me if this sentence has become too complicated) : "If nothing else, there is one quality that I know I possess, and that is being a good judge of people. Yesterday, two of the world's leading consulting firms happened to concur with me." (Hope I am not infringing upon the copyright). And this set me thinking:Does B judge people by how successful people will turn out to be, or do companies choose someone on the basis of how good the person is? The second surely cannot be the case, I think, for otherwise B would have been the foremost candidate for the two companies. And he wasnt even shortlisted, because again, his CG happened to be on the bad side of seven. The former also seemed unlikely, because I cannot imagine someone like B judging people on how successful they are going to be. So I guess he was wrong on that account: The company had not offered A the job because he was a nice guy (not that he is not a nice guy), but because he was the best guy: That he had a pretty good CG. And a fabulous co-curricular record.
Now, coming back to the point, here is what it seems to me: irrespective of whatever crap do companies speak about selecting all-round talents, what they want are people who are ambitious (and their definition of ambitious is just : Having a good CG. You might have plans, and the right ideas, for moon travel, but if your CG is not good enough, you are not ambitious enough). If you dont have it, you might be good enough to crack 100 percentile in DI in CAT, but even then these so called Data Analytics companies wont take you because you dont have a good CGPA.
What exactly does CGPA measure. Nothing more than how much can you be a constant slogger and your ability to be in the good books of your professors. I have been lucky that most of my professors have been pretty good. So my bad CG can mostly be explained by my lack as a slogger. Because I believe myself to be one of the most "intelligent" persons around (As in, I believe myself to be one of the more intellifgent persons on this planet. So if you dont want me, F*** you, Mckinsey!F*** you BCG! And F*** all those companies that make such a big deal about attracting all-round talent!Be honest to yourself, and to the students you come to recruit. And if you are still about attracting "highly ambitious" guys, take my middle finger. Up Yours!! You might be the most presentabler guys around, but neither are you the best, and deifinately not the nicest. And I care only about nice persons, which means I dont care about anyone, because I am also the nicest. Just f*** off! Like the brilliant REM lyrics of Ignoreland,
If they weren't there we would have created them. maybe, it' true,
But I'm resentful all the same. someone's got to take the blame.
I know that this is vitriol. no solution, spleen-venting,
But I feel better having screamed. don't you?
And I feel better as well, already.


Arnav said...

There's a lot that I would like to say here, but I'd rather we discuss it sometime in the future if we do meet again.

I think B meant to say that companies, or at least the ones being talked about, don't come looking for people with high GPAs. They want capable people, and unfortunately they normally interpret it as high GPA. But they also want people nice enough to impress their clients, and someone they would want to work with. The fact that these people found A a more capable person than other people with much higher GPAs and also considered him a person nice enough to fit into their work culture, contrary to the opinion of many people who have known A, probably made B as elated as he sounded. A good CG and a fabulous extra-curricular record wouldn't take one very far after the shortlist if the person himself is not worth it. I believe it also shows that all is not wrong with the recruitment process of these companies, even if it may not be perfect.

And such outbursts of frustration betray the importance the author gives to GPAs. People who know your worth don't care about your GPA.

zubin said...

@ Arnav
One thing is that we would definitely meet again. And yeah we do need to talk about it. And maybe I start understanding your viewpoint..
Aap batao kab free hoge...and I am just happy that you left a comment.

Anonymous said...

I'm surprised with the way Arnav maintains the open secret in this comment. But I agree with the rest of his comment. As for the post, well Zubin, u are right for most of it, but I dont see any oint in getting frustrated any more.
Even if we call it worthless, which of us wouldn't have liked to have a better CG? It's just that we don't have it, and now it's too late.

As for A, yes, he deserves the job well, being the kind of person he is.
Also if both of you look closer, there are other people, esp some females, who have got a job they just don't fit, but they have a GPA to go with it.

Life is tough right.

Hemu said...

Hehe .... nice blog be and seriously a nice topic .

Dont wanna comment anything here ;)

Keep blogging !!

zubin said...

See, such bouts of frustration only help make me feel better, and contrary to what it might feel, Iw asnt feeling bad for myself, but for some of my friends whom I thought deserved to be shortlisted but werent. And Arnav, I aint very sure of the fact that people who know your worth dont care about ur GPA. I just wish it were true.
And true while I feel happy for A as well for Vibhor and Varun Sud last year (It was really great); I am also sad that some other people who might have had made it as well, didnt get a chance. And as for me, I never liked having a good GPA. I am happy the way it is. Such outbursts probably do betray what I feel abt CG.