Indian management education
has its own inherited problems of volume and value. The loosely defined regulatory framework and lack of governance by statutory authorities have led to mushrooming of business schools in India. These schools have admitted students without even mapping the managerial competency of students. The grossly undervalued outcome from Indian business schools have flooded the market with substandard and unemployable manpower leading to catastrophic situation with unintended consequences. Many students are unemployable; parents have paid huge capitation fees to buy these courses, industry is not benefited from this qualified but non competent workforce leading to overall decline in the brand image of ‘MBA’ as a product.
We have bigger issues to handle even for surviving and excelling business schools in India. Scarcity of faculty resources, unavailability of contemporary pedagogy, inaccessible library and other online learning resources have crippled the overall experience of program delivery. Though promoters have taken care of the hard and visible resources, there is a serious lacking on the softer resources that otherwise would have enriched the learning experience of students. Overall the scenario looks blink with lapses in governance and regulatory framework, structural problems in design of curriculum and imbalances in hard and soft part of content. Do we foresee a change in this picture in the future?
The answer is both ‘yes’ and ‘no’. While many traditional business schools still continue with an obsolete pedagogy and try to only deliver a part of the course, a handful of business schools have moved ahead of the curve and tried to bring in the desired change in their curriculum and approach towards management education.
The focus is slowly moving from “doing” to "knowing" and finally towards "being”. This framework is likely to guide management education
into the future. While ‘doing’ takes care of skill based courses which helps students to understand and apply key functional learning in the workplace, ‘knowing’ is bringing in larger social perspective to management curriculum. The business manager is seen in a larger social context and is also expected to understand the socio-cultural context on which business decisions are being made. He is expected to know about social changes, climate change; be sensitive to sustainability of business decision making, bring in changes to reduce diversity and workplace and be sensitive to larger social and political context in which business survives and managers make decisions. Management education is slowly moving from being narrowly focused on functional courses to a multi-disciplinary courses to create a logical and creative problem solver on the foundation of a symbiotic social, environmental and geo-political background.
The most difficult task is the ‘being’ part of management education. While most of the value system and ethical orientations are well developed within family and social settings and during school education, bringing a desired change and inculcating higher moral values along with leadership skills is an upheaval task for management educator. How do we bring in those changes that transforms an ordinary person to an exceptional human being and a business leader is the most interesting and intriguing challenge for management educators? To add onto that, we are experiencing unprecedented technological changes during our life time.
There is no doubt that management education is undergoing a facelift but what matters is the speed at which such changes are embraces in this domain and its impact.
The author is Dean at Jindal Global Business School, OP Jindal Global University