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Reality check for MBA graduates

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Some companies would rather do without them.

On a recent visit to a bank, I had a friendly chat with its sales manager about my work as a placement trainer. He was eager to know if I had candidates to fill sales openings in the bank.

Given the wide variety of students I meet, I asked him what he expected from the candidates. No MBAs please, he said. His reasons are that management graduates have attitude problems and contribute to high attrition rates.

Another day, the director of an MBA class said the students skipped placement interviews held by many companies, especially banks and insurance companies. I asked the students the reasons, and the answer was peer pressure and low status of these jobs as perceived by them and industry.

So, many business schools offer sales and marketing as the main specialisations and the banking and insurance sectors require salespersons, but managers do not want MBA graduates. What is at work here?

Many MBA students affect the airs of a rare breed. Wake up, kids! There are 4,500 business schools in India, and the saying now is that if you do not bump into a loitering MBA graduate in the street, you had a good day. In the name of motivation, we have forgotten to make the students feel grounded. They are praised even for silly deeds, building bloated egos and making them lose sight of reality. Hence, evaluate students properly. Otherwise, attitude problems with respect to learning, listening, discipline and obedience crop up. The proliferation of business schools and lax evaluation are the primary reasons for these problems.

Some enrol for MBA courses just for fun. They have nothing to gain except the degree. But others have to gain skills to remain competitive in the job market. With no-one to tell them so and without introspection, they waste their time and money on the campus.

MBA education is relaxed and fun but do remember that what matters for employment in modern day is not the degree but the skills acquired. Beware.

The writer is Co-founder, Kengcyclopedia


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