In Speaking

A few days ago, I was invited by Indian Institute of Management, Kozhikode to moderate a panel discussion called ‘Brainstorm‘ at their annual technology summit, AIMS 2007. When the invitation came in, I nearly turned it down. It clashed directly with BarCampBangalore, an event that’s cemented on my calendar.

Then I took one look at the list of speakers and that half titled my decision. The other decision that fully turned me in favor was the fact that I could still catch Day 2 of the BarCamp.

It’s looked like a decent compromise until a ticketing goof up put end to my BarCamp plans. But that’s for another post.

From left to right, Yours truly, Lil Mohan (MD, Intel WiMax), Hitesh Oberoi (COO, & Info Edge) and Murugavel Janakiraman (CEO,

I had known Muruga very well. In fact, he was on the panel at SearchCamp too. I had heard of Hitesh and had very high respect for him for spearheading Info Edge’s spectacular IPO success. Lil Mohan was a last minute replacement for another panelist but he turned out to be the best amongst the lot.

Everyone listening intently to Muruga talking about his experience in growing

The panel discussion was originally supposed to take place at 2:30 PM but my flight got delayed and hence they postponed it to 9:30 in the night. We had a near houseful even that late in the night. That’s the beauty of campus life. Most students crash at around 2:00 in the morning and the night life had just begun.

Quiz: Trace me in the snap above!

Once I had the panel warmed up with my questions, I turned it over to the audience to quiz the panelists. I moved off the stage and started to mingle along with the students, something that I always do as a moderator. A good sign of an active panel discussion is when there are still lots of raised hands for questions even when its well past the end time. Personally, I felt it was a pretty decent show.

I was quite impressed with the Abakus team who pulled off AIMS2007 wonderfully. I wasn’t there long enough to catch the other programs, but from what I could see, it was a thoroughly professional show put in by the team. Kudos, especially to Rahul Gaitonde.