Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A Personal Request to My Students

I had joined a popular “prepare for MBA” kind of site some time ago as I too was a CAT aspirant (once!) for the fellow program. Recently I came across a thread discussing IBS and the rather distasteful issues that we all had to face recently. I know that by  writing this I am treading extremely dangerous ground but as a faculty I feel it is my duty to address the issue.

At the very outset let me make this very clear to you that this legal tangle affects me too. I however am not open to getting into an “I am more the victim than thou” kind of match with anyone. I would also like to inform my students that I have been characterised as a born cynic, an anti establishment rebel, a socialist idealist by friends, family and colleagues. It is almost impossible for me to choose the establishment over the masses, the proletariat over the bourgeoisie! So you should know, I will not endorse IBS only because I am an employee.

I will not about the legalities or the committees or the PILs. I will talk of what is dear to me and what I know that “I know”

Academics at IBS

This is the third college, I am working in and I have had very deep associations with many others. I have had an insider’s detailed eyeball account of what happens at the very best. Despite what has transpired recently and is still on the boil, I assure you that you are studying at what is arguably the best platform for management studies in Chandigarh. As of now, I challenge anyone to show me a college that boasts of the kind of faculty you guys have north of New Delhi.

The kind of emphasis you have on application based education which even the most cynical of you will agree is very important is something which I have not seen in any of the other “AICTE Approved” and “we are ranked 20” kind of institutions. I know the inside out of most of these places and I wish I could share the realities of the systems, the faculty and the teaching these places have. Let us put it this way, I am fairly confident that most faculty in most of these colleges would fail if they were to attempt the question paper for marketing research you guys got for your exam. Right now, my dear students, I am a part of a team which I am proud of. I assure you, this is the best faculty you could hope for, the syllabus is relevant and updated, the systems are powerful and believe me, you guys are doing great.


What is wrong with them? What we managed this time was in the face of tremendous odds and despite that the figures we have churned out are amazing! I will not get into numbers here as they are irrelevant. Then why are so many seniors cribbing, you may ask? Well, that is because, it sometimes is in the nature of a man to keep cribbing! The placement department can do only as much as to bring in the companies! Did they not do that?? They did. Were they less than what you expected? Yes, they were les than even what we expected but I am sure most of you well informed young men and women know what happened to the globe last year!! I have seen the placement department running to convince students to sit for the PPT at least! And then they have the chutzpah to blame it all on the college!!

Despite all that most of your seniors got good jobs. Yes there were many who could not get placed and that will be the case in your class too! If any of you think that you will get placed if you do not make efforts to make yourself "acceptable to the industry”, get ready for a rude awakening. Then you too will appear in online forums spewing venom for your alma mater!

Leave Everything

Yes leave everything. Let us go back to the very basics. IBS is not a building, the classrooms, placement records, projectors. . . . . . IBS is the people who work in it and the people who come to study there. If someone tells me IBS is no good, I am being told that I am no good. When we talk negative we create an atmosphere of mistrust, doubt, uncertainty and anxiety.

Then I wonder; who are these people who are condemning the college? By the tone of their voices and the arguments they make, they sound as if they would have been at home in some IIM but were forced to join IBS! Then they ignore that the same classrooms churned out success stories where they penned their tragedies! And you can always spot them easily as they have the loudest voices and know most about all things under the sun!! It is not only you, any human being would be very easily affected in such an atmosphere. You came here to get good education. Begin that journey by trying to be good human beings with a positive attitude. Stop listening to and stop spreading negativity.

In The End

Stop cooking conspiracy theories and try to behave like a future manager. If you are not one, try to pretend. Will that change the AICTE / UGC tangle?? No. Not at all, but it will definitely help you feel better about yourself. You see the key is to be passionate at what you do. If you do your MBA passionately enough, the industry will care two hoots for your status with regulators. They need well rounded individuals, not empty headed, scared, confidence less so called MBAs from so called AICTE approved institutions. Don’t feel bad about you institution. IBS is one of the best I have seen. And I have seen the following too:

  • Colleges where most of the data given to magazines for rankings and to AICTE as “Intellectual Capital” is pure fiction.
  • Colleges where, there is faculty who were students in the previous semester!
  • Colleges without net connections, leave alone on line databases!
  • Colleges where AICTE rules are broken daily but AICTE still approves them!!
  • Colleges where books for the library are purchased by weight when libraries auction outdated and useless books and in bulk not from booksellers but from back alleys near Jama Masjid!!
  • Colleges which claim 100% placements on paper but even the 10% they could pace are getting a salary in the range of Rs. 8 – 15 thousand!!
  • Colleges where semiliterate old time business men run “educational kiryana” stores where they sell AICTE approved MBA degrees. They charge hefty premiums for management quota seats and even offer discounts for bulk purchases!!
  • Colleges where accountant of the college is asked to teach finance!!
  • Colleges where the attendance is all fictitious and in reality never goes beyond 10%!!
  • Colleges where the senior most faculty joined the college as a typist and once used to aspire to be a meter reader with PSEB!!
  • Colleges where people do PhD in a subject, write a book on it without ever studying that or working in that field!! And believe it or not that book is one of the reference books in one of the IIMs!!
  • Colleges where the children of the owner, as students  get to be wished to by the faculty, appear for exams sitting in their father’s office with all reference books and even faculty to help and then get away with it!!

These are all AICTE approved colleges! Now tell me, is IBS not heads and shoulders above such institutions?


IBS will be as good as you and I will make it. Let us make it Big!!

Monday, September 7, 2009

The Minute

The clock struck 11.59 and the party at le Meridene New Delhi went wild. The countdown began as a chorus, 59, 58, 57, 56……. The high and mighty was celebrating New Year’s Eve 1998. Everyone was on a high! High on spirits, high on success, high on page three glitterati glittering more tonight than ever.

It hurt. Shivering hard and rubbing against the tarmac hurt his ankles. Cold steel of the icy winter of Delhi cut through his tattered blanket through his shirt penetrating the pages of the Hindu and Economic Times he had stuffed in his shirt. The cold steel. Suddenly, the skies opened, pulled apart by a glow so warm that he had to smile! “Thank god! Now I can sleep” he said to himself. Maybe it was the winter or maybe the fumes from the vehicles but he had been feeling sick for the past few days now. So sick that he had not been able to collect enough from the bin to eat. “The bin!” he reflected, it was a lucky stroke that he chanced upon the bin. “I hope it remains a secret”, he thought. He did not want the other roadside urchins to know that even a big name like Le Meridiene in the middle of Lutyon’s delhi was flouting all the rules and dumping leftovers in the trash bin. You see, they were not supposed to that, they were supposed to dispose the leftovers as biological waste in a prescribed manner and carry to a large dump just on the outskirts of Delhi. But they bent the rules often! And thank God they did that!

Food. He suddenly remembered how his parents would leave them every morning and return late at night with food. Food. He remembered how it feel when he ate for the first and last time in a day at night. Food. “And food made you feel warm…… or is that just my imagination….” Food…… Filling and war, just like his mother’s hug! That brought a smile to his face, the thought of food and his mother seemed to increase the warmth and the glow! “What is the winter weakening already?” The pain had also disappeared. He was not shivering anymore. The warmth. So comfortable, so enveloping. The warmth, like the embrace of a beloved he never had. Her warm breath tingling his senses, her fragrance lilting, sensuous, so full of life.

Who was she, he had never seen her on this intersection before. Strange! She was actually smiling! And that too at him! Maybe she is one of the guests at the big party inside, maybe she decided to step out to experience the chill. But still, strange! Her touch was so warm, she smelt so good, fresh like the blossoms they threw away every evening after a VIP left. She was smiling, beckoning him! Was he dreaming? He had not even used the roadside paint remover fix others used. Then she held his hand and draped herself around his frail frame. In an instant his entire life flashed in front of his eyes. Such pleasure, such joy, such contentment. Who was this woman he wondered one last time before falling asleep in her warm embrace. Who was she?

7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, WELCOME 1999!

The next day, MC Delhi added another unclaimed body to the endless list already had.