If you wish to create a new identity in the business world…

In recent years, there has been an increased demand in the industry for quality leaders who can supervise, administer, and manage enterprises. This situation calls for rising economies like India to groom today’s youth into tomorrow’s business leaders, says Professor and Director of Karnataka Law Society’s Institute of Management Education and Research (IMER), Belgaum, Purushottam Bung.

Mr. Bung, who did his graduation in engineering and his postgraduation and Ph.D. in management studies, shared his views on the challenges and opportunities in the field of management education in the country in the wake of growing demand for dynamic and efficient business leaders who could make a qualitative difference. The IMER has been one of the well-known B-schools in north Karnataka for the last two decades.

Excerpts…

What is so unique about management education?

The first step in the recipe of making a chicken stew is: catch a chicken. Do not really ask the second step, unless you have caught one. Whereas an adventurer may contemplate on ways of hunting the fowl, a tactful cook may well order the meat from the local butcher’s shop and a mathematician or a wit may empty the contents of a ready-to-cook chicken stew sachet into a vessel and follow the printed instructions. Life is full of instances where not only what you do, but also how you do is of supreme importance. And that subtle art of making things extraordinarily good is known as management. Although the above analogy may seem cliché ridden, it tells the story of management education.

While other branches of knowledge focus on domain-specific skills, management training involves decision making skills, negotiation skills, presentation skills, leadership skills, team building skills, interpersonal skills, communication skills and a whole pack of multidimensional management proficiency to handle unforeseen events to make the success story sound like a fairy tale.

What is the scope of the MBA course?

An MBA programme, or any management equivalent, or at least a good one not only makes the learners ready to understand the problems/challenges that businesses face but also groom them with the required talent, knowledge and skills to resolve the problems and/or convert them into opportunities. Management programmes mould one’s cone of vision and add a global perspective. Hence, pursuing an MBA degree or an equivalent is useful to those who wish to create a new identity in the business world. The return on investment is much greater, if the student can pursue the programme from a reputed institute with passion to create management leaders and opportunities for other educated youth.

In other words, management education institutions bear the moral responsibility of inculcating in its learners the single most transformative force called Leadership, with the ambition of taking the society and economy to new heights. Hence the success of a B-school depends upon the curriculum it frames, the pedagogical tools it employs and the teaching methodology it adopts.

A word of caution for the students...

Innumerable institutions offer MBA/PGDM programmes…two-year full time MBA programme, executive MBA programme, two-year full time PGDBM programme, MBA through distance learning and so on. But a college is only as good as the students it produces. There is no dearth of B-schools that make tall claims and boast of newest infrastructure to churn out graduates year after year. How many of them become employable, however, depends upon the quality of the programme, as companies can easily distinguish between degree holders and capacity holders.

Can the grade deliver the goods? How to choose the right B-school?

It is very important to choose the right B-school, as management education is expensive and students and parents want good returns on the time and money invested. Before selecting an institute, one must take into account the following factors: the academic rigour, the quality of faculty, curriculum, infrastructure, industry-institution linkage, and past placement record. Nevertheless, before taking the call, it is important not only to visit the website, but also the campus (interact with faculty and students) to get a first-hand feel of the institute, because, after all, seeing is believing.

Obvious benefits…

MBA touches nearly every part of the modern business enterprise and adds credibility to your perspective when making business decisions. It teaches you to look at problems and opportunities holistically. It provides analytical framework such as risk assessments, cost benefit analysis, strategic plans, etc., which can be fruitfully applied to any problem or opportunity. The MBA programme provides you a platform to think and equips you with the art of communication and presentation.

And finally... Mr.Bung tenders an apology to his vegetarian friends, who could be offended by the thought of catching a chicken. However, he is open to partaking the delicacy over a business luncheon if carrot stew is their favourite.