[LBSIM Faculty Speaks] :: The Need of the Hour for Management Education in India

Management
education in India has come of age. Education imparted at prominent business
schools in India endorses this view to a great extent by providing quality
teaching which is evident from the fact that many Indians are holding numero
uno positions in prominent MNCs in the world such as Pepsi Co, Microsoft,
Google, etc. At the same time it is also possible to argue that these people
rose to such prominence not because of the complete teaching that they received
from the management education here, but due to their hard work, commitment,
desire to do well, and mission and vision. What magic worked behind this great
success is not possible to decipher always, but can be understood that a
combination of class room teaching with the factors mentioned must have played
a pivotal role behind this gargantuan success. A large number of such Indian
leaders are currently shaping up the Corporate America whose reach seems to be seamless.

India
is increasingly becoming relevant in the global business space and promises to
occupy such space for a reasonable period of time. As fulcrum of current world
economy largely balances on the prospect of knowledge based economy, Indian
economy and mangers will be able to deliver qualitatively and quantitatively
better due to their first mover advantage in such sectors as R & D,
pharmaceutical, financial, insurance, legal services, IT, etc. These sectors
greatly depended on a judicious mix of technology and ideas where Indian
managers excelled immensely. This is where Indian management education should
focus on and build on further to take the lead in the global market.

This
dimension of management education needs a constant and evolving combination of
theory and practice. Somehow the teaching in management education in India is
not practical-industry driven. Management education otherwise globally is
industry-driven where interaction with industry forms a core component of the
syllabus. Therefore training through industry rigor and experience should add
more value to the grooming of these mangers at Business schools. What is
noticeable are certain faulty policies and gaps in the system that in a way
restrains the true value of education. It is necessary and called for to make
it more holistic in nature. It is therefore imperative to highlight these
problems.

First
major gap is noticed in the form of serious non-interaction between industry
and teaching at business school. This relevance gap is understood to be the lack
of understanding between what the needs of the industry (corporate clients) are
and what the B-schools deliver. That is because the interaction between the two
is mostly seasonal; in the sense when the placement seasons approach
interaction between them get overactive. And, this is purely from job-seeking
point view; nothing really to do with improvement in teaching or charting out a
path for making the curricula more industry-driven or seeking future
engagements at regular interval.

Secondly
the courses taught such as OB, HR, Marketing, Finance, IT, CSR and Strategy at
most of the Business schools are functional in nature. For which industry
experience is the key and this needs to be combined with the teaching in the
class immensely. Now it’s not always easy to rope in industry leaders to
provide their practical experience in the class. Though many of them would like
to take up a full time employment in the business school they face many
restrictions especially in the emoluments front as well as with their freedom.

This
delivery gap is a major problem in India as a result the improvement that can come
from such a marriage between industry experience and class room teaching always
remains unachievable.

Thirdly
in most of the country’s best business schools, active participation of Indian
trade and industry in terms of enriching quality education, designing of course
curricula and delivering important knowledge to the student mass is completely
missing. As a result it becomes difficult for the Business school to understand
and include what really the industry wants.

Lastly
the educational system that is followed hardly provides any time to the
students as well as to the faculty to conduct any research or develop adequate
knowledge in their domain areas. Students are absolutely hard pressed for time
as the trimester system just run through the year without providing any
adequate break in time. Faculty need sufficient time as well as funding from
different sources to conduct research and consultancy which provides a lot of
succor to class room teaching as teaching and research reinforces each other.

It’s
time  that the Government as well as
private Business schools indulge in constructive and innovative policy making
that makes Indian management education more advanced, industry driven, globally
integrated and quality oriented. These policy gaps will be an enabler for
B-schools to reduce the relevance and delivery gap.

Countries
such as the US, Canada, the UK, Netherlands, Singapore, etc. have well-laid-out
policies for MBA education and constantly improve on relevance and delivery. The
World Economic Forum, which measures the Global Competitiveness Index, is using
quality of a country’s B-schools as a variable. In its Knowledge Assessment
Methodology (KAM), the World Bank has also used it as a tool to help nations
transit to a knowledge-based economy. The Global Business School Network, which
operates as a World Bank arm, encourages B-schools to enhance future leaders’
access to high-quality management education.

Dr. Anil K Kanungo

Professor

LBSIM

To know more about LBSIM, CLICK HERE.

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