Just imagine you’re a successful management consultant cum entrepreneur and have written a very well received book on management studies – Beyond The MBA Hype. And when people were expecting you to write another book that would help the confused students who want to go for the management courses, you come up with a ‘wild’ kind of book.
A top-class management consultant gets approached by a underworld Don who wants him to help him improve his illegal businesses like drug trafficking, adult movies, murders and so on. Though the obvious response of a successful and professional management consultant would be a sharp ‘NO’, this story goes on differently. The job of helping the underworld don is accepted and then the real action begins.
This is the plot of the Business Doctors: Management Consulting Gone Wild. If you have read my review of this book, you would know how much I liked it and when you like an author and have a popular blog 😉 you must interview the author. So, here it is – Interview of Sameer Kamat , the author of Business Doctors and Beyond the MBA Hype.
He has written two books – Beyond The MBA Hype which was published by HarperCollins and is currently in the third reprint. His second book Business Doctors – Management Consulting Gone Wild is a self-published book and is receiving great response from the readers. It managed to reach in the list of top 27 books in Indian Writing on the very day it got listed on Amazon India.
Here’s my conversation with Sameer Sir:
1) What inspired you to become an entrepreneur? Did you plan about becoming a writer before or did it occur to you just like that?
I had spent many years in the corporate roles ranging across technology, consulting and finance. But in each job there was the feeling that something was not right.
Becoming a writer was not on the cards. It just happened. I started writing the first book to share many pitfalls that international students experience when they enthusiastically jump onto the MBA bandwagon without doing enough research. I thought I’d write a few blog posts and be done with it. But as I began writing, the number of related topics increased and there was enough content to fill a whole book.
2) (Question from a reader of my blog) Do you think you need a job experience to become a successful entrepreneur? Is it necessary to get a job experience in the similar field to achieve big in that field as an entrepreneur?
Theoretically, the short answer is No. But I’d still advise getting some experience before launching a startup, because it reduces the learning curve. Why re-invent the wheel when you can experience firsthand how successful business run?
Working in the same field is even better, as there are many technical skills that can be picked up and re-used in your own business.
Of course, if entrepreneurship is what your real passion is, then staying on for too long in stable and comfortable jobs just makes it more difficult to manage the transition.
3) You’re a writer cum entrepreneur. How do you manage your time?
My primary focus is on entrepreneurship. That helps put things in perspective and plan my book related activities accordingly.
The consulting work I do (i.e. helping professionals get into the best universities across the world) is seasonal. So there are off-peak phases as well.
4) How did you get such a ‘wild’ kind of idea – management consultation for the underworld don?
Management consulting isn’t a mainstream profession. In fact, many readers (including students) who haven’t spent enough time in the corporate world to cross paths with the species wouldn’t have heard of management consultants.
So I was looking for ways to introduce the idea to folks who may not be familiar with it. Instead of writing a boring non-fiction book, I thought it might be interesting to spice things up and present it like a Hollywood action movie.
Well, I long for becoming a management consultant now all because of this book 😛
5) After an overwhelming response to your first book – Beyond the MBA hype, why did you chose to go for a completely different genre with Business Doctors: Management Consulting Gone wild?
I have no intentions of becoming a full-time professional author. So it wasn’t very important to me to build an image as a non-fiction author or a business fiction author.
That allows me to experiment more with my writing projects. The audience for the second book isn’t very different from the first one. Both would connect with professionals who’ve been working for a few years.
We love stories more than advice. I wondered if it was worthwhile creating a story that would entertain as well as inform. Something that’ll give the readers much more than a few hours of living in a fantasy world.
Business Doctors has a lot of the typical action scenes – jail breaks, car chases, guns, explosions. But there are also plenty of management concepts that would prompt readers to look at their own businesses in a different light.
6) Why did you go for self publishing? Your first book was well received and you would have got the second one easily published. Right? What made you go for this not so popular idea of self publishing your book in India?
As I keep telling people, writing the book is the easy part. What happens after that, in case you decide to go down the traditional publishing route, needs far more patience and perseverance.
It took 5 years for my first book to reach bookstores after it was first written. For my second book, I did not want to wait for that long. Even though I have published one book, I don’t have a track record in fiction. So the process wouldn’t have been a cakewalk anyway.
Here’s the bigger story of getting Business Doctors self-published in India.
7) You are a consultant too. What if, some day you’re approached by a person like Woody? What would you do?
I guess most professionals, whichever industry they might be in, would realize the difference between reality and imagination. They are wise enough not to approach amateurs sitting at a desk and creating fictional stories.
I was expecting a better answer but got a ‘management consultant’ answer 😛
8) Which one do you think is better – Beyond The MBA Hype or Business Doctors? If you had to suggest only one to us, which one would you choose?
When a mother says – ‘Mere Karan Arjun aayenge’, it is unfair to tell her that there’s only one seat left so she can’t invite both.
‘Beyond The MBA Hype’ which is aimed at a very niche audience of professionals looking for a formal management education.
In contrast, ‘Business Doctors’ is more mainstream, entertaining and informative. For the readers of Finix Post, Business Doctors is a better choice.
9) What do you think about Finix Post? Be truthful. We love criticism.
In the cut-throat world of blogging, managing to get a foothold is tough. Finix Post has not only carved out a niche for itself but has managed to grow the traffic really fast.
So more than criticism (which is easy for people), I feel the effort needs to be applauded for what you’ve achieved in such a short amount of time.
I reached out to Finix Post because I knew the site (and the enthusiastic team behind it) will ensure that each post gets the maximum mileage.
I hope other authors and professionals also realize this and reach out to Finix Post to get featured.
Oh, how good it feels when you get appreciated. I want more of it O:)
10) Plans for the next book?
None, yet. For now, the primary objective is to get the word out for Business Doctors. So wish me luck!
Count us in for putting a ‘sold out’ tag on Business Doctors.
I hope you all loved reading this interview. I need you to share your feedback with me. Start commenting!