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How useful is B-school grooming
Rahul Nehra | November 08, 2005
One of the biggest changes in the corporate environment over the past several years is that India has become a global hub for several companies. But most B-schools in the country are yet to realise the need for "regional" knowledge, at a time when the "region" encompasses not just south Asia, but also south east Asia.
The grooming and inputs B-schools provide at present are insufficient for a manager to be up and running from day one. Few management institutes in India include in their curricula the legal, financial and cultural perspectives of doing business in other countries; I doubt if there are any database of the best management practices of other countries. I don't suggest that B-schools make it mandatory for all students to take these courses, but at least provide these courses as electives.
The other significant issue in these days of global organisations is that not everything needs to be done in-house. Processes may be the building blocks of an organisation, but they may be done just as well - if not better - if they are outsourced or delegated. In fact, in many cases that may prove to be the more efficient option.
B-schools need to realise that organisation structures are changing. Most companies today have a window of between six months and two years to reach global markets. They no longer have the luxury of performing every task themselves - today, long term is five years. Unfortunately, most MBA programmes still push the do-it-yourself approach.
Finally, a good leader needs to be inherently benevolent and ready to sacrifice. Most B-schools, though, foster an environment of cut-throat competitiveness. This has implications for the team structure. You may be brilliant as an individual, but if you can't be a good leader or a good team player, everyone suffers. Unfortunately, the current environment doesn't drill that home; it breeds competence, but also insecurity.
Rahul Nehra is country manager, India, and business development director, south Asia and Singapore, Irdeto. He graduated from IMT, Ghaziabad, in 1996.
As told to Meenakshi Radhakrishnan-Swami