Book Review #24/50 – If God was a Banker

As I mentioned in my review of Ravi Subramanian’s first book, I like his style of writing and I had already started reading this book as soon as I completed reading “The Bankster”.

This book came out in 2007 and traces the careers of two IIM graduates Sundeep and Swami, from the time they join as Management Trainees all the way till they become the bank’s CEO. Sandeep is characterised as the shortcut loving, unethical, casanova superstar who tastes success faster than Swami. Swami is characterised as the ethical, family-oriented, genius kind of employee who can’t fathom the politics in the corporate world.

They both have the same Godfather, Aditya who comes to their rescue at different times in their career. I was fine till the last chapter and the ending of the novel … there is hardly any suffering that Sundeep faces inspite of being a womaniser who almost breaks up a team manager’s marriage, a schemer who is corrupt, and someone who indulges in fraud – a bank’s worst nightmare. Aditya coming to his rescue and Swami giving him the benefit of doubt just doesn’t work. On the other hand, this is how the corporate world works unfortunately. The fraudster gets away, the CEO who nearly drowns an organization is given a handsome severance package and ethics are given lip service by everyone in the leadership team. Sad, but true.

If I had been in Aditya’s position, I would have let go of Sundeep – his kind of employee is toxic. If I didn’t manage to terminate him, I would have never come to his rescue when all his mis-deeds caught up with him. He needed to pay the price for what he did.

A fantastic book to use during a class discussion on Ethics and success. Definitely a recommended read. I had infact read the next one too.

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