‘An institute can become top-ranking only if it has a learning culture’

Garima Singh New Delhi | Updated on January 09, 2018

CP SHRIMALI, Acting Director of Management Development Institute

CP Shrimali, Acting Director of Management Development Institute (MDI), joined the institute on March 14, 1977, as a professor. He has held almost all important posts, such as professor, trainer, consultant and researcher during the 40-year period. Shrimali, who completed his doctorate from Udaipur, did a consulting course from Manila and post-doctorate fellowship from Kellogg. He also studied labour law from Indian Law Institute. As his tenure ends on December 31, Shrimali talks to BusinessLine about what makes a management school different and the future plans of MDI. Excerpts:

In what way is MDI different from other B-schools in India?

At MDI, merit and only merit is the criteria that we follow. The institute does not give any quota and students get admission only on the basis of merit, which makes the college 100 per cent merit-based. Also, a variety of programmes have been developed by MDI for different strata and segment.

We have courses, such as on public policy, for policymakers in the government, human resource, post-graduate programme, national management programme, and international programme, to name a few.

The second advantage is the institutes’s location in Gurugram, which is a corporate hub.

What makes MDI one of the top-ranking B-schools in India?

An institution can become top-ranking only if it has a learning culture. Our focus is not on teaching, but on learning. I think my distinction is that my institute runs 24 hours, my students do not sleep for more than five hours, the library is open 24 hours. The faculty here does not have mindset of a 9-5 job. They work round the clock.

Second, placement gets high weightage, so we focus on level-two competence, which means those who are picked up from MDI are industry-ready.

The industry would not be required to give them training to make them suitable for the job, they will be productive from day one.

So, our differentiation from others is that our students, while doing their MBA programme in these two years, do a large number of projects and assignments. So, they have the confidence of doing things when they join industry.

Lastly, a top school becomes top only if it is a knowledge creator, which means that the faculty devotes enough time for research. I asked my faculty to give half of their time to teaching, and the other half to self-development and research.

MDI was the first business school in India to get accreditation from Association of Management in Business Administration.

Among other top B-schools, why do you think MDI was chosen for the accreditation?

Our focus has always been on international quality and that will happen only if we have a global mindset, which is why we applied for AMBA accreditation.

We wanted to be different from others and we started our MBA programme around 1994 at the time when the economy was opening up.

We could visualise that in a decade or so, the Indian economy would get integrated with the world economy. That meant our mindset, education and courses should be global.

And for that we wanted someone to come and evaluate us, our courses, faculty etc. So we invited AMBA. They evaluated and suggested certain things and based on those,we got accredited and improved our quality.

How has MDI fared in placements in the past few years? Does the institute have any specific course that other top B-schools do not offer?

Our placements record has been outstanding. The salaries are going higher and higher. Students are getting their dream jobs and almost all the companies that go to IIM-Ahmedabad also come here. When someone is looking for finance, strategic or marketing role they come here.

The advantage that this institute has is something that IIM-Ahmedabad does not have – an HR programme, which competes with XLRI.

Then, we have an international management programme which none of the top B-schools have. Because of this, our placements are global.

Students selected for the two-year programme study here for a year, and then in Europe. And when they do their internship in Europe, they get placement in Europe. Our placements are 100 per cent for these courses.

What are the future plans of MDI?

With falling interest rates, share markets and mutual funds are giving away new instruments. The bond market is emerging and a number of new financial instruments are coming up. We’re planning a course in financial and insurance sector.

How strong is the MDI alumni network, and how do they help existing students with placements?

We have a large alumni base because 1986 onward, we have national management programme. Many of our students are now CMDs and CEOs, directors general and board of members. We have nearly 600 entrepreneurs and CEOs. You name an IIM, and my students are there as faculty members. You name the industry, and our students there.

In alumni meets, we take various initiatives, such as Guftagoo. We engage some alumni as a third person to give inputs on whether students are industry-ready or not.

Published on November 20, 2017

Follow us on Telegram, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Linkedin. You can also download our Android App or IOS App.

This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor