I may be wrong but most business management students I have come across in the recent years seem to be sceptical of the value of investing time studying. It is definitely not that they are bad students or that they do not want to do well in life. On the contrary, most students in the classes I teach are way better than what we used to be.
In my opinion the blame lies with the education system; the regulatory bodies, the colleges and universities, the faculty and even the parents.
If a student is demonstrated a clear advantage of doing something it is safe to assume that most students will do it. It is then obvious that if you want a student to attend classes and prepare for exams, you just have to demonstrate the benefits of doing so. That said, just telling them that it is for their own good is not good enough! We need to make changes to our teaching and evaluation system where the students who do bother to attend classes and prepare for the exams are actually better off than those who do not! And as of now, I can confidently say that the teaching and evaluation at business schools (at least the second rung schools) is not doing that.
But that does not absolve the students. Working hard persistently is a habit. That is why most achievers have been that consistently throughout their student life. My experience as a student and as a faculty tells me that student performances do not see dramatic improvements even though dramatic falls are possible. Most of us keep scoring in a particular range throughout our student life. In fact, marks during 10+2 and graduation can be good predictors of academic performance during postgrad courses.
So being an achiever or a dud becomes a habit!
Then there is this issue of many of my students telling me that studying theory is futile and that when the time comes, they will deliver! I am sure some might, but most wont. The reason is simple. Human beings are creatures of habit. Working and achieving is a habit and so is not working and failing. Our habits affect all aspects of our life. It is next to impossible to expect someone to deliver a sterling performance in the industry when the poor soul has not been able to get more than 60% marks ever!!
Then should all those who have scored less than 60% give up??? No…… They should make radical changes in how they work and study. If they keep doing the same things, the results will remain the same.
The changes can be many and in most cases, customised solutions will be needed. Till then, they can start by believing in themselves and start by developing the right “habits”!! One good way is to do the only job they have today. STUDY!!