October 13, 2005

What ails management education....and my expectations from MDI

We wonder why we come to BSchool after we spend a term or so here... And after the term is over (and the butchering that follows it in the form of screwed up grades) you wonder why you left the cozy comfort of your home and the comfort of your job to come to this hell-begotten place where you are on the run 24x7. The assignments never seem to end. There is no holiday (everyday has something which you can directly or indirectly call work). You are away from home, i.e. if you are not a Delhi-ite. And before you know it some form of assessment be it quiz, mid-term, end-term, project work, some bloody event, an extra-curric, club meeting, etc. comes u and screws up your schedule.

Having gone through the motions of one term, I have come to realise what I want from this institute. Majority of management graduates seriously lack HR skills, rather softly put soft skills. Not that spending two years is going to improve anyones people skills, but it is very important from the following perspective. From what my mentor, Mr. DN Dalal, in Siemens told me, a person spends max 3-4 years using tech skills...maybe less. After that the focus goes into 50% tech-50% people mgmt. And further on the focus is totally on people. As Prof. Debi Saini, here in MDI clearly says, People come before strategy. Problem is that not many freshly minted managers have a people orientatiom.

Another area of concern is tha total lack of development of long term thinking. All simulation games prepared for BSchool students and all that comes out from the academics of BSchools is a terrible short term focus. Though this might work in the minutely narrow area of highly-liquid investments, I doubt its sustainability on corporate strategy. What you get is a mass assembly line output from n number of BSchools churning out short term specialists who are well suited to work out short term strategies fed on learnings from crappy analysis of business cases, last minute botched data from Google and the types. We are generating managers with lack of vision.

Which brings me to what I want from this place. I want to master the knack of thinking into the future. I don't know how I'm gonna do it, but I think it's the single most important learning I can take from this place. I also want to get into the art of managing people, since people are the most important component of any organisation. I think my academic group is a good place to experiment. I successfully tried out certain truths on group dynamics with my previous acad group.

I have learnt that when people are presented with a model which delivers results excellently, they accept it, assimilate it and propogate it. There is no better catalyst for organisation change. It is some form of self propogating fire. It is also much better than other forms of change because other models depend to a huge extent on assumptions that are not practical. (More on the practical applications of models later)

I know most of this might sound extreme gibberish to many. But to those who may understand an iota of it, you know what I want from MDI.....

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