Education

Corp honchos flock to IIM-K for B-school refresher

Vinay Kamath Chennai | Updated on March 12, 2018

Debashis Chatterjee, Director, IIM-Kozhikode   -  THE HINDU

IIM-K Campus, IIM-Kozhikode.   -  THE HINDU

New campus in Kochi plans to take business education closer to market place

Two police officers, three officers from the Indian Air Force, IT and financial sector executives, businessmen, executives from public sector companies, and a few executives who have flown down from Dubai and Qatar.

This motley bunch of 47 is listening intently to Debashis Chatterjee as he speaks, flitting between anecdote, stories, humour and discourse.

Chatterjee, Director of the Indian Institute of Management – Kozhikode (IIM-K) in Kerala, is addressing a management development programme, based on his book Timeless Leadership, 18 Leadership Sutras from The Bhagavad Gita, and his class of senior executives is keen to learn what for them is evidently new ground.

Chatterjee points to this class of senior executives as an example of how IIM-K has been ramping up its executive education programmes the past few years.

“We have been doing this aggressively since I took over three years ago. We are scaling up our MDPs quickly. When I came in, the revenues for executive education was Rs 27 lakh; now it’s going to touch Rs 10 crore,” he says.

The B-school has run programmes on manufacturing excellence, on logistics, programmes for school teachers and principals. It even had the whole Kerala Cabinet for a programme on governance last year.

Given the tremendous change that the economy is going through, Chatterjee, in a recent interview on campus, says that there is a huge need for mid-career executive education.

So much so that IIM-K is readying its new MDP block on the campus. Describing it as a ‘work in progress’, Chatterjee says courses are being conducted alongside as the building receives its finishing touches.

It has already hosted a course for the Indian Army.

“Executive education for a B-school is like a hospital for a medical college,” says Chatterjee, adding that it is also a learning for the faculty as well.

This new block, built on the same hillock as the IIM-K campus, offers a breathtaking view of a carpet of coconut trees as far as the eye can see.

When done, it will have 120 well-appointed rooms, including suites for CEOs, and an ayurvedic spa as well.

The Coimbatore Ayurveda Sala will manage the spa.

Kochi campus

Next academic year, IIM-K will also kick off its city campus in Kochi. This course will be for working professionals.

“Instead of people coming to the B-school, we’re taking it to them. The reason that I am going to Kochi is that we want to be closer to the market space. If you are a business school we can’t sit on a mountain top and dictate to the commercial world this is how you should do business.”

The school has zeroed in on a building for the programme for which it expects an initial batch of 60.

Chatterjee says eventually the two-year MBA itself may metamorphose into shorter module programmes.

“The cost of not connecting your knowledge to action is pretty high. I learn something today and apply it two years hence when things have changed. So companies may send their people for four modules of three months each followed by going back to their jobs. What matters is transferring that intellectual vigour to the jobs space. If you can’t, then the value of the MBA is gone,” he explains.

Companies prefer MBAs with one to three years of experience. Chances of getting a job later also increases for students. “Companies can benchmark the experience but can’t benchmark their knowledge from IIMs,” says Chatterjee of the trends he sees.

Published on December 05, 2012

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