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Institute of Imperfect Management the lowdown truth of iims

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daredevilrocks
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Institute of Imperfect Management the lowdown truth of iims - May 17th, 2006

Institute of Imperfect Management200,200They are the cream institutes of learning - on top of the aspirants' list of ambitions. But a close look at the IIMs, their faculty and students reveals a picture not quite perfect. Apurv Pandit looks at the issues ailing our B-Schools as they plan to go globalIf you ask what 'global' means to a student of any of the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs), he will reveal to you that in MBA classroomspeak, talking 'global' refers to uttering a lot of academic jargon that impresses the professor no end but, in reality, amounts to zilch.The word global, however, came into limelight in an entirely different context for the IIMs this year, after IIM-Bangalore rubbed the Union Human Resources Development Ministry the wrong way by opening a campus in Singapore in a bid to go international.Forget global, go completely local first, said the HRD Minister, pointing out that the six IIMs at Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Calcutta, Lucknow, Kozhikode and Indore offered only 1,500 seats as opposed to a national demand of 20,000. Unperturbed by the rebuke, IIM-Bangalore called an emergency meeting of its Mukesh Ambani-led Board of Governors and decided to amend B-school's Memorandum of Association (MoA) with the HRD Ministry that would loosen the Government's control on IIM and open the gates to Singapore.On February 1, 2006, a meeting of the HRD Minister Arjun Singh with Directors of the six IIMs at New Delhi resulted in an amicable compromise. The IIMs agreed to increase their intake in lieu of the HRD Ministry's blessing for international foray.And, thus, the devilishly difficult Common Admission Test (CAT) - arguably the world's toughest - just got a little easier. You can now take statistical solace in the fact that IIM-Bangalore and Calcutta have decided to add 30 seats each for their MBA-equivalent Post Graduate Programme's (PGP) classes of 2009.Independent voices from the industry and academia, meanwhile, ask an entirely different set of questions. Have the IIMs succeeded in delivering to India what was originally intended? Are these much sought-after institutes really as world-class as have been projected? Is IIMs' internal show being managed as it ought to be? Do the IIMs really deserve to go global?Established in the early 1960s, the IIMs have generated a steady stream of young management professionals who have gone on to take key managerial positions in top Indian companies, public sector businesses and after 1992, top multinational banks, FMCG giants, consultancies and the social sector. A degree from the IIMs is the magic key to prosperity and higher ambition for a comparatively low price - an IIM graduate is assured on an average a job with an annual salary of Rs 7 lakh, many months before she completes her course. Some IIM graduates have forayed into globally competitive entrepreneurships.But a deeper look into the IIM phenomenon reveals that this is all there probably is to it. Contrary to general perception, none of the IIMs features in the top 100 of any of the international B-School rankings that matter, even though the BusinessWeek, Financial Times and The Times London ranking teams survey them. Though they boast of having world-class faculty, barely a handful of professors in the IIMs have any contemporarily relevant research to their credit. There are few research papers going into international journals. The student diversity is staid at best, with more than 70 per cent engineers in every class. A majority of the class has zero or less than a year of work experience. There are very few women studying in IIM classrooms.The infrastructure and hostel facilities at the older IIMs do anything but stand up to their reputation. In a local environment, the IIMs continue to have an edge in terms of student quality and faculty over other B-Schools in the country. But the equation changes when the IIMs decide to compete with global business schools on the international turf. Or worse still, international giants like Wharton School, Pennsylvania or Tuck School of Business, Dartmouth, decide to make inroads into India. The rules of the game change and the very model that the IIMs have been functioning on is put into question.According to Dr Kuldeep Singh, Senior Consultant at Infosys, Bangalore, and former Chairman of PGP at IIM, Indore: "The IIMs follow an input-control model and have their reputation built entirely on exclusivity. If you have an entrance examination that is the world's toughest, you are assured of admitting students who would have above average number crunching skills. If you collect 1,500 such students at six institutes, the companies are going to hire from there because they have a guaranteed pool of skilled people. But if you remove the input-control from IIMs, do you have anything left to show?"Says a professor of finance at IIM Calcutta on condition of anonymity: "After the first year of rigour, absenteeism in classrooms increases alarmingly because classroom participation in the latter part of the course does not add to the final grades. When I talk to students at that point, I begin to feel that placements were their sole motivation for the entire two years."But are students entirely to blame for absenteeism? The Dean of Programme Initiatives at IIM, Calcutta, Prof Anup K Sinha said, "The biggest problem facing management education in India is the lack of quality faculty. That is a big constraint because typically a good faculty member will prefer to teach in Singapore or the US and we just cannot match the salaries he gets there. There can be people in the industry who are good practitioners and can also be wonderful teachers but they just don't have the time to teach. So, in India, unless you are very passionate about teaching, or you didn't land the job you wanted, you decide to hang around teaching in a b-school which, incidentally, is not very financially rewarding.""The IIM faculty are remunerated on Government payscales that offer little incentive for excellence," says Dr Singh. The figures testify. Except for IIM-Ahmedabad and Bangalore, all other IIMs have a shortage of full-time faculty in key areas of Marketing, Finance, Human Resources and Information Technology Management.IIM-Indore, which besides PGP offers three other programmes - including the money-spinning management development programme for companies - has only two full-time marketing professors. IIM-Kozhikode has only one full-time IT professor, only two marketing faculty and only two teachers for finance and accounting.The IIMs make up for this shortage by inviting visiting faculty which is very often from the industry. However, industry experience is no indicator of good teaching skills."The odd visiting faculty is brilliant but most are so atrocious that leave alone holding our attention, they astonish us by their level of ignorance. Sometimes, we find that what they tell us about business practices is the complete opposite of what we have learnt during our jobs," says a second year student of IIM-Lucknow."The international average for faculty research grant is Rs 2 crore per annum per professor. At the IIMs, it is only Rs 1.5 lakh. How can you do pathbreaking research in such a small cost? Which good faculty would like to stay on in such a research-hostile environment? Why will they not teach outside or work for companies?" asks Dr Singh.In fact, the IIMs have already lost the likes of Prof Vijay Govindarajan, Dr Bala Balachandran and Prof CK Prahlad - all internationally acclaimed management gurus - to foreign b-schools. Prof Govindarajan, who is a professor of International Business at the Tuck School of Business, Dartmouth, and a global authority on strategy, said in an interview to a TV channel last week that the two years he spent teaching at IIM-Ahmedabad in the 1980s were a"highly frustrating experience and nothing has changed in the past 25 years".Sanjeev Bhikchandani, CEO of naukri.com and the most well known entrepreneur from IIM, had a different viewpoint though: "The problem is not IIMcentric. By and large, research is not awarded anywhere in India. In fact, this is a string reason why IIMs should go global for which they should be freed from the clutches of the Government".Asked if there was a shortage of quality faculty, the heads of IIM- Ahmedabad and IIM-Bangalore disagreed. Prof Bakul Dholakia, IIM- Ahmedabad Director said: "We have absolutely no shortage of faculty and our professors are comparable to the world's best."IIM-Bangalore Director Prof Prakash Apte said: "In fact, some of our faculty has come back after teaching at foreign business b-schools." Asked why IIM professors were not doing any relevant research or why their papers were not being published in international journals, Prof Apte said: "Research done in India does not get as much attention as it does in the US. In India, nobody cares to listen. It does not mean that IIMs are not doing relevant research."The infrastructure at older IIMs is in a poor state. The academic block and hostels of IIM-Calcutta crave for upgradation. The Computer Aided Management Centre, popularly referred to as CAM-C among students, is worse than some computer laboratories at Delhi University colleges.The hostels are dark and dingy. While the newer IIMs, like Indore, have facilities like a Laundromat, at IIM-Calcutta, students have to juggle washing their clothes in the bathroom with the rigour of lectures, assignments, projects and presentations. Despite a corpus fund of at least Rs 10 crore with the older IIMs, no intent of upgradation is visible."The IIMs have nurtured a very stagnant culture over the years and there is inertia to any kind of change. They have settled down comfortably in their self-glory of exclusivity and don't seem to move with the world. Will they take the same culture to Singapore? Will it do good or bad for them to go global?" asks Dr Singh. His concern could be real, for IIM-Bangalore would compete with three global top 20 b-schools in Singapore - INSEAD-France, Chicago GSB and the National University of Singapore. Unless the IIMs undergo a major attitude change, it would not be surprising that they are reduced to just another non-entity in the extremely competitive world of management education outside of India's protective borders.* The IIM faculty are remunerated on Govt payscales that offer little incentive for excellence* The infrastructure and hostel facilities at older IIMs do anything but stand up to their reputation* After the first year of rigour, absenteeism in classrooms increases alarmingly because classroom participation in the latter part of the course does not add to the final grade



this is an article written by mr. apurv pandit in the pioneer he is the editor of a b school forum
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Re: Institute of Imperfect Management the lowdown truth of iims - May 17th, 2006

so if this is state of iims god save other low rung b schools
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Re: Institute of Imperfect Management the lowdown truth of iims - May 17th, 2006

hmmmmmmmmmm..................wat a pity!!!!!!!!!!!1..................all this fuss about these IIMS n in reality its almost nothihng!!!!!!!!!!!1
seriously god knows wat happens in the lower graded institutes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1
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Re: Institute of Imperfect Management the lowdown truth of iims - May 18th, 2006

Quote:
Originally Posted by daredevilrocks
this is an article written by mr. apurv pandit in the pioneer he is the editor of a b school forum
i know this one.!!

wouldnt hurt if u mention the source too!


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Re: Institute of Imperfect Management the lowdown truth of iims - May 18th, 2006

seen this before ... still will slog like crazy for CAT 06 .. want my BLACKI
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Re: Institute of Imperfect Management the lowdown truth of iims - May 18th, 2006

I think its the exclusivity of being an IIM grad. more than anything else....
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Re: Institute of Imperfect Management the lowdown truth of iims - May 18th, 2006

i just care abt Placements thts it.............. WOOooOOOOOoooo 16 lacs thts wat i want ...... i dnt care whichever institute it is just give me money baby



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Re: Institute of Imperfect Management the lowdown truth of iims - May 18th, 2006

same here dude @ karma...we both share same perception on money matters...lol


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Re: Institute of Imperfect Management the lowdown truth of iims - May 18th, 2006

Quote:
Originally Posted by ch21599
seen this before ... still will slog like crazy for CAT 06 .. want my BLACKI
same here , i will also work hard and get into blacki

cheers

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Re: Institute of Imperfect Management the lowdown truth of iims - May 18th, 2006

Neways this goes to show that its the quality of the student intake that determines the performance of the institute and not anything else....
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