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Friday, May 31, 2013

Without Reservations - J.W. "Bill" Marriott

Bill Marriott, the pioneer of hospitality business needs no special introduction to the world community, specially book enthusiasts. Without Reservations is an autobiography of a man who inherited his father's worldly wisdom and keen business intellect, and made a synergistic amalgam with his own brand of innovation and people-centric approach. It reveals to us the many fascinating aspects of his life starting from his childhood through the years of his rei(g)n on the Marriott Hotels. Strongly recommended (*****) read for any intelligent and aspiring business(wo)man, or executive.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Gandhi the Man - Eknath Easwaran

A quick review of the book "Gandhi the Man - How one man changed himself to change the world" by the renowned author Eknath Eawaran. Throughout the book, Eknath's personal admiration for Gandhiji and his philosophy of life, is self evident. What gives the book the real mass appeal is Eknath's personal charisma as a spiritual educator and consummate writer, as well as the innumerable photos from Gandhiji life he presents in the book. Here's a small snippet about the author and the book from Wiki:

Eknath Easwaran (December 17, 1910 – October 26, 1999) was a spiritual teacher, an author of books on meditation and ways to lead a fulfilling life, as well as a translator and interpreter of Indian literature. In 1961 Easwaran founded the Blue Mountain Center of Meditation and Nilgiri Press, based in northern California. Nilgiri Press publishes over two dozen books he authored. Easwaran was influenced by Gandhi, whom he met when he was a young man. Easwaran developed a method of meditation – silent repetition of memorized inspirational passages in the mind, from the world's great religions – which later came to be known as Passage Meditation.

Gandhi the Man is a biography of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi written by Eknath. The book was originally published in the US in 1973. Several subsequent expanded editions have been published. The subtitle of the 4th edition is How one man changed himself to change the world. All US editions of Gandhi the Man contain four major parts entitled 1) The Transformation, 2) The Way of Love, 3) Mother and Child, and 4) Gandhi the Man. All US editions also contain numerous photographs.

“By virtue of being human, each of us has the capacity to choose, to change, to grow.”- EKNATH EASWARAN

Monday, August 16, 2010

The Indian Consumer: One Billion Myths, One Billion Realities

Available on AMAZON.COM review: As India has become a flourishing market, many companies are vying to cash in on the growing Indian middle class. This makes it the right time for a factual look at the consumer class, to understand it better, as companies bank they fortunes upon it. Many foreign firms are cuing up to tap these markets and in the process, they have found the Indian middle class to be largely mythical. In effect, this book provides a clear and honest evaluation of India's consumer market, in order to aid the entrepreneurs and companies in developing realistic strategies for operating in the country.

The book is a fantastic narrative on the evolution of middle classes in India that every retailer seems to target. The author has very beautifully captured the shift in the attitude of the middle class, from self-denial to self-indulgence. Real life stories have been cited by the writer to corroborate his claims with evidence. The book is a thoughtful insight on how circumstances and experiences change the outlook of people towards life. The transition from exercising restraint in consumption to the 'enjoy today, forget tomorrow' approach will determine consumer behavior in the coming decades; this is what the author has intelligently established.

In the book, Alam Srinivas has pointed out that India is among the youngest nations in the world, with over 65% of the population under the age of 5. The younger population, combined with the middle class and the upper middle class proportion, will provide a strong foundation for the organized retailing sector. Fervent consumers of luxury brands are also pictured in, who form a lucrative target for retailers. While the average Indian consumer is conscious of how much he/she is spending; the luxury brand consumers are extremely liberal with money and supremely conscious of the brands.

The Indian Consumer: One Billion Myths, One Billion Realities is as insightful as it is interesting, and appears to have been penned down after considerable field research. It intends to prepare the readers to understand the complexly structured Indian society and its behavioral patterns. The language used is simple and clear, making it easy to comprehend. The book contains six chapters in all, and is capable of striking an instant connect with the Indian reader. Over all, a refreshing and bracing take on the Indian middle class!