The success of a b-school depends upon how well it anticipates the emerging manpower requirements of industry and how well it trains and develops its students to make them job ready.
The globalized economic environment has forced business entities to improve their efficiency and adopt best practices from around the world to survive and grow in a highly competitive market economy. Business activities have become extremely complex, requiring continuous improvement of systems and processes, innovating new products and services, and making strategic decisions to satisfy highly demanding customers. This has thrown up a great challenge for managers to conduct business effectively.The success of a b-school depends upon how well it anticipates the emerging manpower requirements of industry and how well it trains and develops its students to make them job ready. It requires a close coordination and interaction between b-schools and industry. There are many issues to be addressed in this regard. The curriculum must evolve continuously around the emerging needs of industry. This is possible if the b-schools have the freedom to modify their curriculum on a regular basis and adopt innovative learner-centric pedagogy.<!– Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The emerging integrated and inter-dependent global business environment demands that management students get adequate international exposure and have a global orientation, so that they understand business context and business demands. Many b-schools provide some opportunity to their students for international exposure through international immersion; under which the students are sent on visits to a few business units or multinational organizations or educational institutions in other countries to get a feel of international business environments and processes. Alternatively, b-schools have exchange programmes with international institutes, in which students from one country complete part of their curriculum in the partner institute in the other country. Finally, b-schools set up up multiple campuses in various regions of the world. These interconnected campuses share their regional expertise and exchange students.More than 2/3rd of India’s population lives in villages. Corporates are recognising the tremendous untapped business opportunities in rural India and focussing their business strategies in that direction. B-school students need to be sensitized to the needs of rural population and have an awareness of rural economic activities and market potentials. A few proactive b-schools arrange for their students to visit villages, and study rural institutions, rural markets, etc. and collect qualitative and quantitative information to analyse the income, expenditure and economic activities of rural folk.The demand for business education has increased manifold in the past two decades, but the number of b-schools has outgrown the demand. This situation has posed many challenges for the education industry. Finding competent faculty, creating bonding with industry and aligning curriculum to their needs; adopting learner centric pedagogy; internationalizing business education; and providing adequate industrial and rural exposure to students, are the major challenges faced by a large number of b-schools.
Dr C Babu is the Director of Durgadevi Saraf Institute of Management Studies, Mumbai.