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Rediff.com  » Business » B-schools don't teach how to deal with people

B-schools don't teach how to deal with people

January 02, 2008 14:25 IST

Goals, strategy, mission, numbers, methods, profits, so on and so forth -- B-school education teaches you a lot about these and other business jargons.

Of course, it is good to impart management education through a systematic and syllabi-led approach -- based on the learning and experiences of many management thinkers and practitioners.

This obviously manifests into a better understanding of the business environment and the situations you may encounter while shouldering responsibilities in a real environment.

Having said that, have you ever wondered why good leaders are always able to handle complex situations involving far complex people, creating a win-win situation, balancing all the coordinates?

The essence of running a business -- large, medium or small -- is actually being able to drive the most valuable resource, that is, its people, in a cohesive and synergistic manner for the growth of the organisation and also the individuals that make the organisation.

This is something that can never be taught in any B-school -- since managing people will never have time-tested, fixed and structured formulae as against most of the other business issues.

The issue of managing people percolates right from within the organisation to the multitude of external stakeholders. It is crucial to establish the right relationships necessary for any business to survive and foster, having to deal with many constituents such as customers, investors, bankers, government and society among others.

The role of relationships can never be ruled out in any corporate environment, be it internal or external. Growth of any organisation is directly proportional to the ability to forge and manage suitable relationships by the personnel at the helm in the organisation.

And this is something that B-schools may not be able to teach through their curricula, however, rigorous and thought out they are. I believe it can be achieved by a lot of practice, keen observation and understanding of people, and one's ability to work with people from diverse backgrounds.

Beyond the good groundwork, grooming and grilling of an individual to make a successful business manager by any B-school, factors such as gaining continuous insights into the human mind and striking a right chord on the relationship front plays a major role in creating leaders.

R N Iyer graduated from IIM, Ahmedabad, in 1991.

R N Iyer
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