1) Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
2) Why do you want to join this B-school?
3) What are your three biggest strengths?
These are typically the questions you have to tackle.... when answering the application essay for the chairman's son applying to Ivy League colleges. On question 3, I chose to go with self-reliant, strong code of ethics and an inherent ability to ignore irony and sarcasm... (based on his enthusiastic response to strengths 1 and 2).

I knew this was a project of strategic importance to the company as it was personally allocated to me by the CEO. Clearly this was higher in importance in his KPIs than getting clients, closing transactions and chanting, Missionam, Vissionam, Jargonam. Yes, this is exactly what two years of B-school, eight years of work experience and a lifetime of sucking up have qualified me for... A PhD in Corporate Chamchagiri. To go a little MBA on you guys, To attain spiritual nirvana in Chamchagiri, you must tyaag your spirit of the 3 Ss:

Self-Respect:

Abandon this, and you will move up the the chamcha value chain... At some point you will be asked to take care of dogs at the party thrown by the boss's wife. Attaining the same status as the wife's anointed pet is a great addition to your CV. Do tag yourself in the pictures and ask for a Linkedin testimonial from the canine.

Self-Identity:

The chamcha must also seek extreme alignment with the boss right down to his like and dislikes, mannerisms and bowel movements. The chamcha must completely abandon any notion of having any identity or purpose... Like that guy in your “others“ messages on Facebook. Think of yourself as a sponge with no substance whatsoever. No one should notice you for you. This is of great help when you need to act as a moving column for the boss's presentation on sales patterns.

Self-Preservation:

The chamcha must always be ready to commit when called upon to prove his allegiance. However, be prepared. With bosses like Mogambo, total commitment means shouting “Hail Mogambo“ and jumping in a pool of exotic acid...which sure beats that skin scrub treatment at B.Blunt. If you report to Shakaal from Shaan, then the occasional swim with his pet sharks is not too much to ask. (Clearly, pets rank higher than HR in the appraisal process).

The total commitment means, chamchas sometimes have an extraordinarily high mortality rate beaten only by women taking showers in horror movies. But with some bosses, like Gabbar Singh, a simple fatality is not sufficient. You must be ready to play Russian roulette with CAT questions: Kitne Aadmi The?
Option A: Do sarkaar. Option B: Yaar, mai startup join kar rahan hoon. Option C: It was Sholay 3-D. Isiliye pata nahin sarkaar. They were everywhere.

To conclude, the 3-S strategy requires you to be selfless (literally) but stick to it and you may find yourself winner of the chamcha of the year at a prestigious business leader awards function. (which are NOT held to massage the ego of advertising decision makers).

The writer is India's first corporate humourist

THE GREAT INDIAN CHAMCHA CHALLENGE

Ever encountered The Great Indian Chamcha? His greasy tentacles are spread across all strata of public life. We see him most often in politics, lauding the unimaginable, flattering for favour, defying self-respect and logic. In offices, he will invariably be the one singing a boss's praises and ending sentences with “sir jee“. So set your wits at work and tell us about your encounter with the chamcha. Upload funny photos, videos, cartoons, jokes and any other rib-tickling material around the chamcha on facebook.com GreatIndian Circus or twitter.com TheGreat_Indian using the hashtag #TheGreatIndianChamcha.

The best, funniest entries will get a chance to feature in The Times of India and will also stand a chance to win exciting prizes. So, what are you waiting for sir jee? Which kind of chamcha do you dislike the most and why? The most quirky answer can get a surprise.