Fascinating and moving read. The narration is straight from heart. Only crime that Rajat Gupta can be accused of is naivety. And the crime of justice system (this itself seems to be a dreadful oxymoron) is being blinded by emotion of the times that this case was tried on.
This book also gives very intimate understanding of how things work at McKinsey which itself is a big value that can be got out of this read, even if one is not interested in Rajat Gupta per se.
But still I'm left with wonderment how a man who was dealing with billions in his work and in his after work activities for decades, who did so much good for society (all documented in public records) could be seen as somebody who *may* have done insider trading for *some* profit (not proven till the end).
"what to do, what not to do" - is a lesson that is critical to anyone's knowledge. This book so far helps readers decode this very important aspect. More to follow as today is just day 1 of purchase. It also gives a glimpse of how powerful the time is...
I honestly did not see myself buying or reading this book. I had a lot of notions about Rajat Gupta fuelled primarily by internet articles, newspaper reports from the time and even his own Wikipedia page.
A social media post about the book launch at ISB got me interested and I looked more closely into him. I have been intrigued by McKinsey and have generally been interested in the life of a consultant. The book was brilliant. Provided many insights (some of them very humbling) into the exceptional journey of the son of a freedom fighter who was orphaned at a young age, looked after his 3 younger siblings, excelled at IIT Delhi and Harvard Business School and went on to head McKinsey for three terms after which he shifted his focus towards philanthropic efforts. He was the face of the global business world before his fall from grace after being convicted for insider trading. It is rather well written and a tell all tale. The author is of the opinion that he was made the scapegoat of the financial crisis of 2008 and that the public wanted to see a powerful man in a suit be put away. After reading the book the reader can't help but feel that Rajat Gupta was innocent and was manipulated by certain individuals around him. The book does seem slightly biased though.
I was initially unsure whether to read his book, at first place. He was a heroic figure and his fall from grace was deeply disappointing, to say the least. But then I thought even Ravana and Bhishma taught invaluable life lessons before they withered away. So, I bought one. I am glad I made the right decision. He was authentic. Even those who argue that the book is just an effort to rebuild his tarnished reputation, I would say that his is one good attempt. I agree that it is hard to believe that someone like him, who has wealth of business experience, could get himself into such a mess and not have a strong line of defense. But like many of us, perhaps he was able to reason/handle better others’ problems/interests than his own in his life. His biggest regret is that he gave into his fear (perhaps of a longer imprisonment) in one of those life altering moments. Key lessons from my perspective: Values based decision making and to not get too busy to not listen to your heart during hard times and more so during better times.
A well written account of extraordinary life . Though title is mind without fear, fear has dominated Mr. Gupta' life and he seems to have counter it through hard work, excellent professional, social and political networking . But then, in the end, like any ordinary human being, he was to endure his worst time, all alone, on his own. Even though, he appears to innocent on the charges he was convicted, the book has failed to substantiate this beyond reasonable doubt.
Great piece of work . A must read book to anyone whoever aspires to climb the corporate ladder. Gives a clear glimpse of what not to do in life. He showed us how we cannot control our life sometimes. Never losing spirit of the author when the life hits at us hard is inspirational. Rajat showed us that good thoughts when become good actions would give good results. We can understand from his life how determination helps in getting things done.
Makes a genuine attempt to connect with the people who looked upto Mr. Gupta and to share his account of events. The book highlight his upbringing and events that shaped his thinking and ties it to how the charges against him were so misplaced. He makes an honest attempt and book has a kind of feeling of being written by someone who had made a considerable attempt on self-reflection
This book covered almost all virtues of his life and a presents a very interesting account of how everything that he built in terms of relationships and influenced many trusting his instincts ended up hurting him when he was down. One other important teaching you will realise reading this book no matter how difficult times are if you have been a good person you can always count on your family. Then there are fellow immigrants (like Preet Bharara) who have utilised the opportunity for personal vendetta in order to rise for fame by having a media trial before conviction just like we have it in India. I absolutely agree about how it’s the story that matters not the fact. If you can sell a story to jury and judge, you can win else you’re screwed.
Critics may call this book a futile attempt by Rajat Gupta to prove his innocence to the world, but the truth is, this book is about how a man, who despite being at the echelons of corporate America, was fooled and cheated by the system. You learn a lot about life from this book. A definite must read