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As I write this post, Flora is on a flight to Hong Kong for a job interview, Prou is organizing the end of term party for MiM class, Marcus is solving the finance assignment due Monday and Andy is amusing himself with Korean baseball videos on youtube.

Get introduced to the MiM team that, just an hour ago, competed for the European regional finals of One Laptop Per Child Global Case Challenge, held at Imperial College London. The College, in collaboration with Hult School of Business, hosted over 20 finalists from all over Europe, including MBA teams from INSEAD and London Business School itself. The challenge was to crack a real business problem pertaining to OLPC’s current initiative of providing laptops to children in least developed countries. This had to be accomplished in a span of 3.5 hours and presented to a panel of judges. The team providing the most practical and effective solution would be rewarded.

This all-day event turned out to be one of the most rewarding experiences at school for all of us. Being a part of a gathering comprising the best consulting brains all over Europe to work together for a noble cause was a real privilege. Our team dynamics made this experience even more worthwhile. Our objective was to have fun. We ended up doing a really good job and received great feedback from the judges. And we had fun, of course!

Some great moments –

“I jotted these numbers down, can’t remember what they are though”

“Ok, let’s target Brazil, Jordan and Parul (instead of Peru)”,

“Yeah well, that’s the flaw in our strategy… but there is no Q&A so..”

“Would I like to present? No thanks. I like to hear myself listen”

Judge to the team: “You finished 1-min before, so we can ask you some questions”
Team-member: “Orrrr… you could give us extra points for finishing early!”

On a more serious note, it was amazing how we supported each other to perform our very best. Our solutions were practical and effective, if not path-breaking. We probably lacked experience as compared to other MBA teams but our enthusiasm and creativity made up for it. Even when we were lost, we didn’t panic or argue but objectively assessed all possibilities to reach conclusions. I so hope to work with smart and fun people like this in my professional life as well.

After spending 11 enjoyable hours of working together, cracking up over silliest of things, realizing when we were screwed, making last-moment changes and finally putting up a good solution, we came back as five friends who were proud of what they achieved together. Most importantly, we were happy to be part of an effort that will provide better education and learning to countless kids in least developed countries.

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It’s over. It will be remembered. It was legendary.  

It was everywhere – Nash Lounge, Marquee, Quad, Regent’s
room, Dining room, parking lot. TATTOO2010 was an evening that brought
together more than 1200 odd LBSers from all programs to relish the cultural
diversity of the school.

 

It all started in November with sponsorship, when we had our
first Tattoo meeting. Though the economic climate greatly affected sponsorship,
we had some leads and decided to focus on raising funds through ticket sales. Come
December, and we were aggressively marketing the event. By January, Tattoo was
everywhere – in classes (presentations), Nash Lounge (Tattoo-taster week),
Sundowners (T-shirt sales and tattoo distributions) and even on Facebook!  On Feb 1st, the tickets sales went
live and set a
record for first-day sales. The event was sold out in a week.
The
days that led to Tattoo built up the excitement. One could see students from
various programs rehearsing dances, ramp walks and rock band performances in
Fitness Studio, E-wing basement (commonly known as the Salsa room), Lower Nash
etc. There were posters everywhere on campus and more than 60
students had volunteered to help with the evening for bar tending, reception
desk, events management etc. People excitedly discussed their outfits for the
evening. The campus felt the buzz of arrival of TATTOO.
 

D-day:
Around noon, the organizers, volunteers, performers and the school teams (AV,
porters, catering etc.) went crazy setting up. In six hours, Tattoo was ready
to land on campus. People started coming in and the evening began.
 
With
stalls serving sumptuous cuisines from 23 regional clubs, people were truly spoilt
for choice. Performances by professionals for Zulu, Lion dance, Break dance,
Flamenco, Samba and Belly dance (especially this!) had people asking for more.
There was also Salsa workshop to burn the extra waffle hogged on at Belgian
stall and Bollywood show performed by students of the school.  Another highlight was the worldwide fashion
show which resulted in a dance-off between India and East-European club in the
midst of a wild animated crowd. For the music fans, there were performances by
Bagpiper, Accordion and Indian Dhol players. There was also a rock show by one
of LBS rock bands. I could write another 1000 lines about the amazing things
that made Tattoo extraordinary and but even that won’t do justice to it. The
people who experienced it have Tattoo imprinted on their minds. Pictures were
taken. Videos recorded. Memories captured.
 

I met some amazing people while organizing this event
and learnt a lot from them. I will miss working with them and sharing the
common passion of making Tattoo 2010 a memorable evening for LBS community. I wake
up this morning and check my calendar – no more Thursday meetings. All I am
left with is a blue band on my wrist and a tattoo on my cheek…

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Posted by: Parul
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High five to those who made it through the first round! See you guys on campus real soon.

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