As the number of programs increases, my job seems to get tougher with all X versus Y versus Z scenarios I am called upon to adjudicate increasing geometrically. IIM-K has been at the forefront of this multiple-program phenomenon launching a slew of programs that, in their nomenclature, range from super clear to PGP-Finance to PGP-Liberal Studies & Management!
Recently, a colleague was asking my if I knew any fresh B-school graduates for some events and I told him that of late given that I am no longer actively teaching or running cities, most of my students are Eklavyas, who just read my blog and attend a few sessions, and not Pandavas!
It was back in the 2015-16 season, if I remember correctly, that Sachin first managed to track me down by leaving a comment on my blog. I was handling the IMS business in Chennai, he was a student of IMS based out of Kolkata and he wanted some advice on quitting his job and taking another shot at the CAT. The thing with really mature students is that they need guidance only at a really broad level, the rest they customize themselves (and there is the blog, anyway) and Sachin is one such individual. He went on to secure admission into the relatively new Sustainability Management Program launched by IIM-L. Since then he has been doing quite well and has even played a part in helping an administration out during the pandemic. If you read his post you will find he had all the ingredients that a student joining a new or baby IIM or a new program needs — this post. Here is his journey in his own words.
The post on the new and baby IIMs last year was meant to be a sort of reality check for aspirants who have to choose between these schools and others. My intention was not to dissuade anyone from joining but to help them make the right choice when faced with a list of schools to choose from. An alum of IIM-Visakhapatnam and still a regular reader of this blog, Abhishek, commented that the new and baby IIMs were not as bad as the post made them out to be. We got talking and it turns out that since since I had only mentioned established private schools — with schools such as NMIMS and SIBM in mind — it was construed to mean a much longer list, including schools that I would never bring into the comparison.
Give the number of queries I get about the new and the baby IIMs, I thought the best way to shed a bit more light on them is to get my students who have gone there to write about their experience. This one is by Siddharth, who is not a student, but was part of the IMS Team in Kochi. I met him whenever I went down there to take a session, which was usually once a year. Siddharth graduated recently from IIM-U and this is his take about the same. Some of the parts were new to me as well, especially the part about why he chose IIM-U — I think knowing why you want something, being clear about it, and not trying to invent ten other reasons apart from the sole reason is not a common trait (a great lesson in no FOMO) So here are his two cents on this experience at IIM-U.
I think I have said this in another post — India is probably the only country where people will be willing to shell out more than 20 lakhs for a product and at the same time be willing to accept whatever variant the seller decides to give them. What am I referring to here? When I ask students who have both BM and HR calls from XLRI, what their preference is, or what they would prefer between XL-HR/TISS and IIM-K/MDI, most are very clear — the specialization does not matter, all that matters is the brand; others start bringing ROI into the picture. I feel people put in more thought when choosing between a diesel and a petrol car! We are so crazy after elite institutions that we fail to even consider whether we will succeed/fail in or like/dislike a particular field. The objective of this post will be to give you enough information to choose the right program when faced with a choice between a premier HR program and other programs.
Now that the first round results of almost all the b-schools are out, we get regular queries about which b-schools to join. There is rarely any confusion about A, B, and C but after that, it seems as if aspirants are having a lot of trouble choosing between the IIMs L, I, and K and other top b-schools such as FMS, XLRI, MDI, and others. How does one go about making the right choice between the IIMs and other top schools? One of the terms thrown around a lot these days is ROI.