Management education in India must stay relevant to survive

Management education in India is struggling very hard to survive with the rapid changing global scenario. The challenge before the schools is not just to teach them right but also prepare the students for the future, writes Vibha Singh

“Give the pupils something to do, not something to learn; and the doing is of such a nature as to demand thinking; learning naturally results” ― John Dewey

The new economic policy changes, liberalisation, demonetisation and Good Services Tax (GST) have caused a total change in the way in which India does business. Together with a more competitive climate, the responsibilities placed on industry and its managers have become much greater. There are challenges facing managers where he is expected to stay ready to take more initiative, creativity, leading to success for industry and for the whole nation.

The management of companies in India is changing dramatically over the past few years. There is an obvious change in demand and supply. With economic sentiments improving or at-least remaining volatile, there is a need to keep abreast with new developments and thus to enhance skills at all levels of management which has become very important today.

Global leaders

In the context of globalisation, at present the management schools are focusing on the ideas and concepts that have been effective in the countries of their origin but they may be less effective in India. The experts are of the view that while many industrialised countries have tested and adopted management practices that are in perfect harmony with their culture and tradition, no systematic research and study has been done in India.

Dr R Gopal, director, dean and the Head of the Department of the Department of Business Management, Dr DY Patil University, Navi Mumbai is of the view that, “Management is a practice-oriented domain, the education has to incorporate an element of on-the-job training. So in order to maximise the opportunities for development for students, we have developed course which are research and career oriented. We are ensuring that aspiring students have maximum industry experience to enable them to understand and acquire knowledge beyond classroom.”

 Making them employable

The ‘mass production’ and release of management graduates in the market in past few years gave birth to problems in the form of employability concerns. Manish Advani, head marketing and public relations, TEDx Speaker says, “Most of the well- known futurists have predicted over two billion jobs which will disappear by 2030. I am not trying to scare our youngsters but we have to learn to accept the reality. In the current situation we cannot be too selective about the job.

When I moved to Canada on permanent immigration while we were settling down as residents in the initial period, even being a gold medalist with management degree from Institute of Technology, New Jersey, didn’t get me a dream job. I worked with an individual; I wondered what I was doing in Canada servicing automobiles but this small job taught me a lot about automobiles. One day at work while servicing a car, an oil filter slipped from my hand. My hands were black, this incident taught me the concept of speed, and because I was not quick enough in removing the filter my hands were burnt. But this experience helped immensely when I worked in field and led me to big opportunities.” So management is quite a practical aspect and many schools through daily experiences are training them to become managers.

Preparing them for competition

When you look at engineering education, there are laboratories to experiment and verify the theoretical aspects. But this is not possible in the management education. Hence, the course emphasizes on case study driven education to ensure takeaways to the students.

Shivani Ahluwalia BMS coordinator, Sinhgad college of Commerce says, “Our education had always prepared us for employment. But, sadly we were not prepared for competition. Colleges these days focus beyond academia. We have a lot of extracurricular activities which help in all round development. Our current models of education, career planning and job searching have got the needed of a facelift. Apart from the prescribed curriculum and extra curriculum, we teach students certain skills and habits like effective communication and technological skills, being curious and creativity in articulation. Globalization sounds daunting, but with preparations, it can be a seamless navigation for the ones with hard and soft skills.”

Teaching them to learn to care and share

The students should be taught that small learnings can lead them to big earnings. Instead of thinking big they should also learn to think small. In test cricket Cheteshwar Pujara is the one who can play long innings because he knows when to bend down the way grass bends down during storm, trees don’t know how to bend down they get knocked out during  storm.

As a result, many management schools instead of making the student sit ideal are asking them to go out and work for NGO or teach under privilege kids due to which they improve upon their presentation skills fluency and confidence level. Also this helps in working in a team. Most of the organisations looking for people who could be good team players.

Wayne Pereira, student of Fr Conceicao Rodrigues College of Engineering, curator TEDxCRCE believes that, “The education we receive today can only take us that far. Career readiness requires our all-round development beyond the classroom, we need to constantly improve our self every chance we receive in order to succeed.”

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