G. Thangamari, a second year MBA student of Sankara Institute of Management Studies, is an active participant in role plays, simulation exercise and management games. She says they help her understand better what she studies and relate to the developments in the world of business. The active participation and learning has also helped her win prizes in inter-collegiate competitions.
The exercises in management schools are part of the day-to-day learning activity, says K. Nandhini, Principal, Nehru Institute of Management Studies.
The faculty place students in simulated environments that reflect the real world. For example, the Greek financial crisis, or the controversy surrounding Maggi noodles.
The students assume roles – production manager, marketing manager, floor operations in-charge, etc, to deal with the challenges the faculty give them. These not only give students opportunities to implement or use what they have learnt but also know better about the day-to-day developments.
The exercises help students remember for long what they have learnt, says L. Gandhi, Head of the Department, Sankara Institute of Management Studies.
The faculty present real problems to the students by taking cues from their conversations with industry representatives.
As for management games, the colleges place students in situations where they will have to compete with classmates or from students in other management schools. The best manager award that colleges give in such inter-collegiate competitions is something that the students want to win. The preparation for it helps them perform well in academics as well.
The other side to the students’ active participation in games is that they are able to take suggestions and guidance from the faculty.