Dec 27, 2006

A longer way to go

Santosh Desai (IIM-A alumnus himself) attends the PanIIM meet on Making the IIMs into a global brand and points out an uncomfortable fact:

And as the professors pointed out, if not in so many words, that if one looked at the ground realities, this question walked the thin line between fantasy and insanity. The need for a globally respected IIM brand came from its alumni to bolster their credentials retrospectively.

I would tend to agree with that. Though not from the IIMs, even I personally have felt good when I hear news of how my juniors are doing well (which is quite simply the "placement news"). There is hardly any path breaking study being done in Indian B Schools that is useful to Indian businesses. Most of the time we study HBS case studies, and discuss US based management frameworks because not enough study has been done on Indian businesses. Even studies on how MNCs need to adapt to developing markets are being done by US business schools and not Indian B Schools.

The IIMs are a great brand because they have super-intelligent students, who were super-intelligent to crack the dreaded CAT. As Rashmi Bansal (another IIMA alumnus) says:

The word ‘business’ in MBA is a misnomer. The programme is, perhaps, Masters in ‘Improvement of Personal Job Prospects’. The corporate giants who recruit don’t care what the student has learnt.

So there. If you're looking at path-breaking research or a PhD head to the US, like Gaurav Sabnis did. In India, the MBAs rule. To work and not create businesses. The ones who do create a business do with inspite of an MBA, not because of it.