Saturday, July 3, 2010

Thoughts on MBA + Long Letter from "Senior"

Having completed one year of MBA successfully, I think I have attained sufficient age to begin philosophizing about the whole system of Management Education in India. While this one-year in a B-School has been an eye-opener, drastically changing my perspective towards the World, thanks to several interesting people I met throughout the year, I have also begun to wonder on the uncomfortable existential question asked by Educationists and other bunch of intelligentsia: Is MBA education really necessary for anyone? While government is mulling over creating IIMs in every city, not to forget the slew of foreign universities waiting to descend the shores, it might look like a joke to ask the question of whether a B-School is really necessary. While I was an MBA aspirant, I vividly remember reading articles from various philosophers who advised me not to take MBA program as they felt It doesnt really add value to one 's career. Now, having spent a year, I understand why they mentioned so. After spending considerable period of time in a B-School, one begins to realize that it is actually not necessary. Allow me to indulge a bit of philosophizing. MBA is often like those vicious cycle of Samskaras: You need them as long you realize you dont need them. You need B-School education to experientially realize the obvious thing you were meant to do in your life. Prior to B-School Education, one tends to think along the traditional lines, blurring the individual identity amongst the hordes. B-School is important only if it lets you find what you really wanted to do in life. Although I have been wanting to make my career in Business, I never had my personal choice on the sector where my heart yearned to work. This can be verified easily in India: Ask anyone who aspires to do MBA: Where do you want to work? Almost 80% is expected to answer FMCG Sector. Remaining percentage is reserved for Consulting.

These are bunch of incoherent thoughts, I shall put it coherently some time later. Meanwhile, having become a senior in my college, I decided to write an endearing letter to my B-School juniors. I felt like sharing it in in the Web. It can do with little bit of editing. However, I leave it untouched.

Hello Folks,
Few might have met me in the class. Let me make my introductions, nevertheless, I am Venky, SIIB 09-11 Marketing student. I hate this word "Senior", as it makes the stupid assumption that I know more things than you. I happened to join SIIB a year earlier and had a ball of a time during my first year. I did few mistakes here and there and learnt few things on the way. Also, there were few things I wished somebody told me earlier while I finished my first year. ! While this might come unasked, I felt I needed to share few things with you, so that you could also have more fun during the most precious time of your career.

This time is very precious because 1) you are in the last leg of your student life, something which is never gonna come back 2) you are free from the pesterings of your parents/boy-friends/girl-friends. I dont want to talk bad of them. I love them. However most of the times, they often make decisions for our lives. Now, it is the best time to shape your career as per your dreams and desires, without their influences whatsoever. You might might want to take their opinions. However, you are free to chisel how you want your career is gonna be from here on.

I am sure, most of you might be lost in the break-neck speed of things happening around you, with incomprehensible Harvard Case studies and assignments and non stop lectures and what not. While the college folks have one mission to make you busy with a whole lotta things, often they really dont look beyond: What is that you are busy about?

Time runs faster than Usain Bolt, especially during first year. So, there are chances, that you might get lost in the thick of things and wonder at the end: What the hell did I do in my first year: Let me come to the point without much philosophizing:

Life in MBA is not about these lectures and endless supply of assignments. Its all about finding your voice and finding your pathway. Its more like the Lakshya movie, if I can draw some parallels. So How do you find out your "lakshya"? Simple: Explore the world: Get out of the campus: Go for competitions, meet other B-School Students, see whats happening around. Its a cruel joke played in the campus that our campus is set in scenic hills, distant from the grimy business reality. Business happens there. So go out and explore around..

Few Checklists you could check out
1) Get yourself a LinkedIn Profile and start building your profile and your networks. The whole world is in..Arent you in??
2) Start Blogging. FInd your voice. Express your opinions and thoughts. All books you are asked to read by faculty members are simply their thoughts on business: what are yours?
3) Build brand equity for college. It helps you in million ways
4) Start building rapport with faculty, seniors, alumni. Everyone is networked. You never know who could be of help at any point of time

Thanks for reading my patient mail. You can mail me your thoughts/comments/queries whatever you have on life here to my id, instead of floating it around the group


1 comment:

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