Why opt for MBA?

A majority of those who pursue MBA in India are engineers. But a Master’s in Business Administration is meant for any one from any field who wants to enhance their skill level, feels Prof. S. Bhargava, Head, Shailesh J. Mehta School of Management, IIT-Bombay.

Education Plus caught up with him to understand the need for an MBA and preparing for the global business environment.

Why should one opt for an MBA degree?

Whether you are a fine arts, commerce, media or science graduate, as long as you meet the basic criteria, you can pursue MBA. But don’t join it for the sake of getting an MBA degree. I will not get into a debate on whether a non-graduate should pursue MBA or not. But if you are a graduate in a particular discipline, then you would be mature enough to know the market, have experience and understand your strengths and weakness.

MBA is all about the value addition you get while pursuing the course such as developing skills like thinking, cognition, perception, attitudinal and behavioural change and dealing with people.

Should one pursue MBA right after graduation or after gaining some work experience?

Being a graduate has its advantages – you are young, innovative and creative, because of which the solutions you come up with for cases will also be different. But these are likely to be devoid of insight about the real world problems. People with work experience, on the other hand, will never agree with the youngsters’ point of view, and may think they think are only dreaming and aspiring.

In the U.S. business schools, it is mandatory to have some work experience because it enables you to look at a case or a problem from the point of view of your experience and what you have seen in reality.

Personally, I feel it is better if you complete graduation, get some work experience and then join MBA.

There are several kinds of MBAs available — residential, part-time, weekend, online, and so on. How can one decide which course to pursue?

Given a choice, go for the residential MBA programme because it will give you the opportunity to learn from your peers who will bring in their varied educational and work experience into the classroom. But it may not be possible for many due to practical constraints. In such cases, weekend, part-time or online courses are options. Any course or study undertaken systematically will surely benefit you.

Over the years, the number of people pursuing MBA has been significantly on the rise. What is the one thing that students should focus on to set them apart from other MBA graduates? What is it that employers look for?

Employers always look to employ the person who can deliver the best. There could be bias towards graduates from A, B or C business schools. But ultimately, once you join, your next promotion will depend on your performance which is the result of where you did your schooling, how you did your projects and additional skills. Placements also depend on your knowledge, talent, networking, PR ability, communication skills and how much importance you give to each of these.A few us from different B-schools undertook a study for the Government of India. We interviewed alumni who graduated two years, six years and ten years ago. From the study we found that when you join a company, the skills that are required to discharge you responsibilities are soft skills (those that deal with people). But when you do your MBA, the focus is on hard courses like finance and decision sciences. This is why business schools are now introducing more soft skill courses like value, ethics and culture sensitivity.

What is the difference between preparing for the Indian business environment and preparing for the global business environment?

In most business schools, students are prepared for both Indian and global business environments. In some case studies, the context may be local, but the focus is also on universal concepts like strategy and human relations.

You cannot differentiate between either of the business environments because there are both internal and external factors involved. It’s like an iceberg. There is more to what you see. Bureaucracy is everywhere. Government regulations are just guidelines for businesses to be run in a particular way. Indian or foreign, you should adapt to the system you are going to work in. It all comes down to adjusting and adaptability.

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor

Printable version | Feb 25, 2021 4:45:10 PM |

Next Story