In Conversation with FIIB Alumnus- Ms Harshie

When I met Ms. Harshie Wahi, FIIB Alumnus (Class of 2010) at the FIIB Alumni Sports Meet in November this year, she shared a little information from her current working life and also a few memories from her life at FIIB. Her simplicity, dedication towards her dream and her choices influenced me. Here are excerpts from our conversation-

Being Different for a Cause

“Life is a set of experiments! We may fail 99 times, but that one single time of success will make up for the 99% of the failure”, said Ms. Harshie as I asked her how she would describe her career growth so far!

Her life since FIIB has not been less than a roller coaster ride. Ms. Harshie shared with me how for her the two year PGDM course was not just about being able to earn a high salary. It taught her professionalism and inculcated the skills to run and handle an organization with maturity. She elaborated as I heard intently- With its uniquely sculpted curriculum and courses, the two years at FIIB provided her intensive practical academic wisdom that was necessary to come out to the world and take it by storm. It is in these two years of learning, she realized that instead of the urge to be driven by fame and money we should thrive for innovation and effectiveness while attempting to offer simple solutions to prevailing problems and bring about a change.

The conversation so far gave me a sense that Ms. Harshie was in to surprise me with some career choices she made. I was sure that the lady I see in front of me chose to travel a road less travelled. I knew that the next few minutes of our conversation would leave me in awe of her. And as she spoke about her job, the expected happened. She told me how she decided to pursue her inherent passion for innovation and inclination towards social enterprises as she contacted GOONJ, an NGO that deals in various social causes. It was a decision she took in sync with her inner conscience and in spite of getting difficult reactions at the beginning, she stood firm at it since she knew that it was the right platform to apply the management skills that she had gathered at FIIB.

To quote Harshie “It still makes me wonder how I used to stumble at the mention of the word- Social Entrepreneurship before joining FIIB. But, gradually the idea and the aspiration to set up a social enterprise in the future built up somewhere deep inside. I couldn’t fare well at the initial campus interviews after our course was over. At that time I came to know about a unique platform to know more about social entrepreneurship. After attending that Jagriti Yatra and travelling across India for 18 days on train, my life took a new direction altogether. Eventually I became a formal part of the Team GOONJ. Even at this stage I get skeptical looks from people when they come to know that even after passing out with an MBA degree from a reputed Institute like FIIB, I have long been associated with an NGO. But I consider that as an opportunity to enlighten them about a much neglected issue.”

I heard with concentration as Harshie explained how Management lessons taught at MBA institutes are universal for any organization as it will function due to its human resources, financial provisions, marketing strategies, supply chain and logistical systems. When all these functions and their application remains same in all organizations then what difference does it make if an MBA graduate is working in a corporate entity/government organization/NGO.

As her friends called on to ask her to join them for ongoing Women Football match, Ms. Harshie concluded our conversation- “I still have fond memories from those two golden years at FIIB. When I recollect those sweet memories in random, a smile always joins me. The various kinds of activities such as those of dance performances, making presentations, bunking classes are some of the evergreen memories that I will cherish throughout my life.”