Rao, Srikumar S. 1951–

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Rao, Srikumar S. 1951–

PERSONAL: Born April 11, 1951, in Bombay, India; immigrated to the United States, 1972; son of Hassan K.S. and laya S. (layamma) Rao; married lune 26, 1981; wife's name Meenakshi; children: Gowri, Gautam. Education: St. Stephen's College, Delhi University, B.S., 1970; Indian Institute of Management, M.B.A., 1972; Columbia University, M.Phil., 1980, Ph.D., 1982. Hobbies and other interests: Tennis, squash, chess, table tennis, karate, Eastern philosophy and meditation, Wodehouse, science fiction, and creative writing.

ADDRESSES: Home—25 Shirley Ct., Commack, NY 11725; fax: 631-864-3143. E-mail[email protected]

CAREER: Writer, marketing consultant, and educator. Data Resources, Inc., Lexington, MA, associate director of marketing research, 1978–80; City University of New York, Baruch College, assistant professor, 1983–85; Long Island University, Brookville, NY, associate professor, 1985, Louis and lohanna Vorzimer Professor of Marketing and chairman, department of marketing, 1991–. Columbia University Graduate School of Business, adjunct professor; London Business School, adjunct professor; instructor in corporate education programs for companies such as Bell Atlantic, General Instruments, and Northrop-Grumman. Worked as senior consultant to the Continental Group and as consultant for companies such as Citicorp, GTE, Diner's Club, Reuters, Pan Am, and RCA.

WRITINGS:

Are You Ready to Succeed? Unconventional Strategies for Achieving Personal Mastery in Business and Life, Hyperion (New York, NY), 2006.

Former contributing editor to Forbes, Financial World, and Success.

Contributor to periodicals, including Inc., Beyond Computing, Hemispheres, and Training.

SIDELIGHTS: Srikumar S. Rao is a marketing consultant, educator, and business advisor. With an undergraduate degree in physics, Rao holds an M.B.A. from the Indian Institute of Management as well as an M.Phil, degree and a Ph.D. in marketing from the Columbia University Graduate School of Business. He has been a consultant for numerous Fortune 500 companies and large businesses throughout the world. A former member of Mensa, Rao has served as marketing advisor for that group's national board.

Rao is an adjunct professor at the Columbia Business School and London Business School where he teaches a highly sought-after class in marketing, "Creativity and Personal Mastery," noted Fortune contributor Anne Fisher. In addition to being one of the most popular business school classes in the country, Fisher observed, it is also difficult to get into, requiring a rigorous application process above and beyond any required by the school or department. "Each candidate must submit a resume, agree to be interviewed, and write seven essays," Fisher reported. Rao's system of sparking creativity and personal development, called Raoism by his students, "uses a system of intense introspection to revive energy and creativity," Fisher noted.

In Are You Ready to Succeed? Unconventional Strategies for Achieving Personal Mastery in Business and Life, Rao condenses concepts and material from his class and recasts it for a general audience. With core beliefs derived from Eastern and Western mystical philosophy, Rao "promises readers the tools to effect fundamental life changes and find inner peace," commented a Publishers Weekly reviewer. Rao emphasizes reworking of readers' "mental models" in order to perceive the universe as benevolent and to become more attuned to the idea of change. He also uses a variety of introspection exercises to teach readers techniques for quieting the inner chatter that is always ongoing in our minds. He then explains methods for using that newfound peace as an atmosphere for achieving career growth. Rao even instructs his students and readers in a maxim that seems antithetical to a business school setting, Fisher observed: Money, Rao says, isn't everything. A balanced life is favorable to one spent in the constant pursuit of advancement and financial enrichment. Rao's writing "can be a bit euphoric at times but its accessibility is welcome," remarked Sarah Cords in Library Journal, who called the book "a refreshing and quick read."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Fortune, February 20, 2006, Anne Fisher, "Catch the New MBA Craze: Raoism," review of Are You Ready to Succeed? Unconventional Strategies for Achieving Personal Mastery in Business and Life, p. 144.

Library Journal, November 15, 2005, Sarah Cords, review of Are You Ready to Succeed?, p. 75.

Publishers Weekly, November 7, 2005, review of Are You Ready to Succeed?, p. 65.

Time, April 10, 2006, "B-School Buddhism."

ONLINE

Hyperion Books Web site, http://www.hyperionbooks.com/ (April 14, 2006), biography of Srikumar S. Rao.

Srikumar S. Rao Home Page, http://www.areyoureadytosucceed.com (June 2, 2006).

South Asian Journalists Association Web site, http://www.saja.org/ (April 14, 2006), profile of Srikumar S. Rao.