Overcoming Problems at B Schools

Here comes a message sent by the head of a group of educational institutions to all his professors: Every one of us is talking about everything, about student’s discipline, behavior, excellence, commitment, character building, unity and what not.

The big question is are we really and fully competent to teach the subjects which are teaching notwithstanding our qualifications with all the doctorates distinction in our PG’s, the tall claims, which we all are making ourselves?

How many of us have kept ourselves updated about contemporary practices? How many of us are engaging our students seriously and for the full hours allotted to complete the course creating curiosities and igniting inner urges and thirst to search for more answers from the big libraries / journals/ global search engines rather than bragging about ourselves and entertaining them? How many of us are up to date about the business environment? Are not unfolding big news in the media, case studies in themselves?

This message perhaps explains the status of the competency level of our B schools . There is an acute shortage of qualified faculty who are sincerely devoted to the profession of teaching. The PhDs in the country have become a big joke. By studying one drop of the ocean they believe that they have learnt everything (As of now any PG with a first class at the age of 22 or so, fresh from the institute is qualified to become an assistant professor to teach the students of the age group of 20 or so ).

The students want everything to be taught in the classes within that six to eight hour engagements every day . They want the salary of the IIMs and XLRIs but are not devoted enough to spend the rest of the sixteen hours at their disposal for the enrichment/enhancement of their attitude knowledge and skill. They plead for practical experiences and are adverse to bookish knowledge . The dichotomy of theory versus knowledge is crying for a solution.

And no faculty can be master of all practices in different sectors of industry. The industry wants readymade managers billable on day one.

These are few amongst many issues confronted by B schools. There are nasty comments that engineering colleges and management institutes are mushrooming in the country. What we forget is the fact that historically we have never been perfect. We have strived on improving our imperfection and innovating the means and methods while still being amidst thick battle fields.

With all the default, the most promising thing is our ambitious youth. The youth of the country and the students of the management institutes have proved that they can accept challenges. They are willing to sit with us if we are ready to sit with them. That is how India is successfully going through the biggest industrial revolution at the moment. The students are fully aware about the need for proper career building and the right grooming for that to match their expectations and the expectations of the parents, students and industry is the biggest challenge before B schools.

The big brothers viz the IITs/ IIMs / XLRIs have to find a solution and help schools. But, alas they too are crying and want to import faculty. So how does one not go about it? Leaving the issues to the bureaucrats and self styled leaders to set standards for us will take us nowhere.

We need more entrepreneurs to pass out from B schools. Hopefully competitions within B schools will raise the bar and standards. After all, ultimately the fittest will survive. And that is the history which keeps on repeating itself.

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