Vikrama Dhiman
My name is Vikrama Dhiman. I lead Mobility Products @ Gojek. Previously, I led product teams at Bharti SoftBank (Airtel Money, myAirtel, Wynk), Directi (BigRock), Zeta (Corporate Benefits and Gifting), WizIQ (eLearning) and MakeMyTrip (Travel/ Hotels). I was an Agile Coach with Cisco, Yodlee, Sapient, HP & I am an avid reader.

Six Secrets Smart Students Don't Tell You by Chandan Deshmukh | Book Review

The book has secrets of studying smart, and not just six - there are several. Some of those secrets are well known (like studying Math by reading it is like learning swimming by watching YouTube videos, concentrate on some keywords in objective tests), others were not so obvious to me (not giving away the secrets here - pick the damn book). Luckily, the author gives you interesting acronyms to remember the secret (I particularly liked the Chennai Police ATE Ice-cream).

“Don’t be fooled by the calendar. There are only as many days in the year as you make use of. One man gets only a week’s value out of a year while another man gets a full year’s value out of a week.”

What a great thought to start the year with. Six Secrets Smart Students Don’t Tell You was the first book I finished in 2018. It wasn’t a very hard read but I did read it slower than my usual pace. Chandan Deshmukh writes well (or perhaps I comprehended writing from engineers better).

What I really liked about the book was the story-telling format of the book. There was an average student and there were smart students. Chandan tells you how the smart students unravel their secrets one by one. I also liked that each of the chapters is crisp. The book never becomes meandering or boring. In fact, it is one of the books where I think the editor did a really nice job. It is a crisp but a thorough read. Finally, the quotes to set the context of the chapter seems to have become a widely used technique. Chandan employs that technique well in his book. The book could have obviously gone deep into psychology and neurology to make it a more academic book. However, I think that would have ruined the book of its crispness. Maybe, the author could write a more “academic well-researched” follow-up for those who need an academic text. Overall, I really liked the I loved the book. My favorite technique and takeaway are not the environment you study in and the 2-chair technique. I am going to definitely employ them in 2018. I can’t recommend the book enough - whether or not you are a star student.

Rating I gave on Goodreads: 5/5 How did I read this book: Kindle How long did it take to finish to book: 3 and a half hours, in 3 sittings

Some of my favorite excerpts and quotes:

  • The atmosphere you live in influences 70% of your decisions, behavior and character!
  • If Your Study Materials Are Not Within Reach, The Deviations Will Be!
  • "The best revenge is massive success." - Frank Sinatra
  • "If you don't run your own life, somebody else will." –John Atkinson
  • We are taught to be afraid.
  • Even Sachin Tendulkar needed a coach.
  • Cricketers must attend every practice session.

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