The Hindu-Business Line organises a talk for students of Vignan College

Most of the management students pursuing MBA do not have a clear vision of what they want to achieve in life and are in the job hunt soon after completing the degree, and this attitude should undergo a drastic change if they have to achieve anything significant, the Chief Operating Officer of the Varun group Madhav Bellamkonda said here on Friday.

Delivering a guest lecture at the Vignan College of Management in Duvvada near here at a programme organised by The Hindu-Business Line Club, he exhorted the students “not to become mere drifters in life and to set clear goals for themselves. The achievers in life are not the brilliant ones, but those who have focus in the pursuit of set goals.” “They lack a clear strategy and fail to adapt to changed conditions and fall by the wayside. Strategic drift is perilous,” he observed.

Describing the cycle, Mr. Bellamkonda said that in fast-changing times most of the companies rely on incremental change or fire-fighting operations in the first phase, and then they get caught up in strategic drift and flux in the next phase. In the final stage, they either make the requisite transformational change or perish. The role of MBA graduates in such times was to formulate a strategy and steer the companies and organisations through these troubled times. Understanding the organisational culture was the most crucial thing in such an exercise, he told the students.

In his lecture, he also took a dig at Anna Hazare. “I esteem Anna Hazare as he is a great crusader against corruption. But I am afraid the methods adopted by him have also led to a kind of bureaucratic paralysis. No official is taking any kind of decision nowadays. Nobody wants to stick his or her neck out.”

Mr. Bellamkonda noted that greed, inherent in human nature, was the fundamental cause of corruption. “However, human beings can be educated and certain institutional mechanisms can also be developed to minimise corruption. It is a slow, painful process. It can't be achieved through a grand movement,” he said. He also advised the students to stick to a job for at least three years in the beginning of the career and then strive for a higher pay packet.

“Once you get into a particular line, forget the size of the pay packet for the first three years and learn the tricks of the trade.  Don't be in a tearing hurry.” Later, he answered the queries of the students. Head of the department B. Satya Rao, presided over the meeting. Principal K. Alice Mary, spoke.