View Point

The Changing Scenario of Management Education in India
Prof. C. S. Venkataratnam, Member, FICCI Higher Education Committee & Director, IMI, New Delhi
Ms Shobha Mishra,
Joint Director & Team Leader, Education & Health Services Division, FICCI
AcademiaArticle: Towards a successful career
path: MBA in Retail Management
Article: Art & ManagementPersonality Development Current AffairsCampus NewsGD Topics

Choosing the right B-School is crucial

By Alka Kaul

Doing an MBA is an important decision for most students not only because it involves a substantial investment of money and time, but also because it is important for making a career change for some people.

In good times, it did not matter much, which B-school you went to, but in bad times like these, every decision can become important. Shorter programs have suddenly gained relevance. In some cases, students have begun to opt for lower cost programs at lesser known B-schools or even seek out specialized programs.

One solution that is often used by students is to increase their number of applications so as to make sure that they are able to get into some school or another. This is not a right move and often works to an applicants disadvantage because he/she is unable to justify to each school why they would want to enroll for their respective program.

Others choose to apply to lower ranked schools than they should be applying to, simply because the number of applications to every school has increased.

Seeking advice can solve a lot of these problems. Talking to students and alumni from your chosen school, local representatives of institutions and doing extensive research on the Internet can be a fruitful. The number of students from India applying to top five business schools is increasing every year.

Those that get in, have something exceptional to show in their backgrounds. That is why it is most essential to make a realistic assessment and then decide. There is no point in spending money in application fee if your profile does not match the requirements of the school.

Most of the students who come for counseling want to go to the top schools. It is really difficult to convince them that despite their high scores, they may not get admission in the top-five schools.

Even if you do not apply to the very best schools, you can still make it big by doing well in your course and out performing others at work.

It is important to apply to schools that match your profile rather than get swayed by the ranking exercise. Despite the growing concerns about the impact of graduate management education, few studies have documented their effect on a student's managerial abilities. An outcome assessment study was conducted on entering and graduating students in an MBA programme. Graduates of the MBA programme were found to have significantly greater levels of six skills, as compared to entering students. The results indicate that attending an MBA adds value on a number of abilities related to effective managerial performance. The lack of impact on interpersonal and leadership abilities was consistent with frequently cited criticisms of MBA programmes.

But many MBA institutes now offer additional soft skills training which hone the required skills which essentially lack in the core MBA Degree programs. These institutes should be preferred.

People invest huge sums to pursue management in the best B Schools to learn managerial skills in a simulated business environment to ultimately be placed in a good multinational corporation. Placement is one of the most important criteria to take admission into a particular MBA college. After doing considerable research and depending upon their performance in the entrance exams, students take admission into only those colleges which are reputed for good placements and excellent industry interface.

An MBA degree opens up new vistas to business professionals to get jobs in almost all sectors. These include marketing, finance, banking, legal, insurance, sales, information technology, management consulting and many more. Nowadays most organizations look for a MBA graduate who has specialized in a certain field to take up a job. But still having an MBA tag in front of your name is not a sure shot way to get a high paying job as there are many students who enroll in post graduate management programs. Apart from this companies also look at a number of other aspects of their prospective employees, as they have become conscious about the fact that they need to hire the best candidates in order to see their business rising.

Many MBA colleges offer in house placements. Many good MBA institutes offer pre-placement training and skill enhancement programs. There are others also which allow their students to go in for pre-placement offers which means that the student may join a company, provided he has the call letter anytime after the third semester. In this process the person is allowed to take exams of the fourth semester. The top-B Schools of India which have the MBA career placement services organize MBA job fairs and maintain active links with reputed business organizations. This gives the student leverage and also the B-School which offers such placement services become really sought-after. Carrying out such fairs and maintaining liaison with organizations is a job of the in-house placement cells of the B-Schools.

Many think that IIMs is the place where only geniuses and students with extraordinary intellect study. But though this is partly correct, but most of the lot is formed by hard- working students, who have really believe in themselves and performed well. If you are an average student, there is no need to think that you will not be able to make it. Just ensure that your candidature is good, you must showcase an all-round personality. Nothing is lost. You can start from today.

The author is Director, Global School of Business, Delhi