Sep
19

Towards Meaningful Corporate Governance – What I learnt!

As a management student, any exposure to the corporate world is a great learning experience. Industry visits and seminars give us immense exposure to Industry standards, Interacting with corporates and understanding their views on how corporate life unfolds and what corporates expect from us as fresh management graduates. This tends to offer exceptional guidance to us for our career goal setting phase.

We were given such an opportunity by the college on the 4th of July. An opportunity to attend the 7th Subir Raha Memorial Lecture. It was a great learning experience for all of us, attending an actual corporate seminar with many distinguished dignitaries being present. This event has been held every year for the past 7 years in the memory of Late Mr. Subir Raha, Ex-Chairman and M. D. of ONGC. He also served as president of Global Compact India Limited. He led ONGC on to deep exploration especially in the deep waters of India. He made ONGC a global level company in terms of integrated energy.

The chief guest of the lecture was Mr. Meleveetil Damodaran. Mr. Damodaran has had an illustrious career. He was Ex-Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI). He also served as an officer of the Indian Administrative Services, Manipur – Tripura cadre and also served as Joint Secretary of the Banking Division in Ministry of Finance (India) for 5 years. He spoke on the topic of corporate governance. He mainly stressed upon the simplification of laws for better understanding. The present laws are actually provided in a complex way which gives people the opportunity to find loopholes and by-pass laws. He went on to say that the lawyers and C.A.s of the companies should provide proper disclaimers and disclose all necessary information in a clear and concise way. He provided some thought-provoking examples such as the better representation of women in top posts in the corporate world and verification of laws and policies by the legal advisors. After this, he was open to queries.

We really learned a lot from this lecture. The views presented by the distinguished dignitaries gave us an opportunity to get a closer look into the corporate world that exists today.

By – Himangshu Khound

Class of 2019

Aug
29

The Scope and Future of Blended Learning in Management Education

Blended Learning in MBA

 

In recent times, education systems worldwide have seen a massive paradigm shift with the advancements in modern technology. Blended learning has become the new catchphrase in the global education space.

Hybrid or Blended learning is a form of education system in which students can learn subjects online by watching video lectures at home and studies can be done in class with teachers and students discussing and solving questions. By incorporating information technology into class projects, communication between lecturers and students can be improved and students can better evaluate their understanding of course material through the use of computer-based qualitative and quantitative assessment modules. Blended learning can enable students to become active learners through reasoning and concept application and also allow increased student interaction with peers and instructors. By keeping students engaged in class, it can decrease distraction, enhancing retention and application of acquired information. According to a research, a sizable number of students expressed satisfaction with blended learning and found it to be a relevant and effective learning approach.

Scope and Future of Blended Learning:

  1. Greater time flexibility, freedom, and convenience by working part of the time online from home.
  2. More interaction with the instructor and fellow students.
  3. Access to unlimited updated resources available through the web.
  4. Enhance skills in time management, critical thinking and problem-solving.
  5. Increased success as measured by fewer course withdrawals and higher grades.
  6. More participation in classroom discussions and ability to choose environment-Online or Face-to-Face, in which they feel more comfortable.
  7. More time to reflect and refer to relevant courses and other research materials.
  8. 24/7 access to online course materials.
  9. Receive more frequent feedback from their instructors.

Innovative, dynamic and efficient, blended learning certainly has a promising future in the realm of higher education. For it makes the learning experience collaborative and immersive, it has the power to not only revamp contemporary educational models, but also implement unique ones.

Student Entry by Akash Patra, Class of 2018

Aug
17

B-Involved: The Student Employability Skill Enhancement Program

FIIB has started a unique student employability skill enhancement program->B-Involved. It offers a platform to the students to enhance their soft skills, be employment ready and stand out from the crowd helping them to boost their self-confidence. The program offers immense benefits to students for participating in extracurricular activities including the FIIB club activities. The aim of the initiative is to groom students for finest placements and help them become successful managers in future as they learn through non-academic activities in the campus.

In FIIB there is a number of Students’ Action Committees to cover various professional and administrative activities. These Committees, each headed by a faculty member/officer, provide an excellent forum to strengthen managerial capabilities through the practical application of life-size projects outside the classroom. With a view to promoting a student-driven culture at the Institute, it is recommended that students participate in these committees to assume greater responsibility, assume leadership roles and promote constructive activities within the FIIB community.

  • Each club has 3 co–heads elected from each batch and the positions are for a one-year term.
  • The Institute provides seed fund each club with a starting corpus; however, clubs have to strive to raise sponsorships for the specific events they organize.
  • Annual activities for each club could include:
    • Organizing conferences/seminars in their relevant area
    • Regular distinguished speaker series
    • Workshops for skills and career development
    • Relevant social events that enrich the entire community
    • Career fairs
    • Contests
  • The officers for each club are required to present an annual plan for their particular club at the beginning of their term; periodic follow-ups on these plans are conducted.

Every FIIB student has to get enrolled in this program but he/she needs to score the basic points to stay in the program. The points slab is given below and has to be scored by the student during the entire academic calendar.

Slab Points Benefit
Basic 50 Become eligible for scoring a Bronze/Silver/Gold
Bronze 100 Eligible to redeem the benefits offered at this level + upgrade to the Silver level by scoring more points
Silver 150 Eligible to redeem the benefits offered at this level + upgrade to the Gold level by scoring more points
Gold 200 Redeem the points for splendid benefits like FIIB Linkedin endorsement, Sponsorship for participating in an external conference, achiever badge etc.

Employability skills enhanement

The program not only covers activities like participation in guest lectures, attending a conference at FIIB, attending events-both national and international, writing blogs on FIIB events, completing feedbacks on time but also covers various extra-curricular activities which are conducted in the FIIB clubs from time to time.

Aug
14

Should meetings go the way of the dinosaur?

Meetings are an integral part of any organization. Meetings provide a platform where executives can interact with each other and take decisions regarding key problems. Besides this, meetings also provide a safe environment for all who would be present in order to speak openly.Management Meeting.

But in today’s business environment, there is a huge subsection of employees who view meetings as a waste of time. I wouldn’t say they are wrong because meetings nowadays tend to be so extensive and laborious that they end up merely consuming one’s time and energy.

But even so, meetings cannot be avoided because they act as a check on the progress of the organization.

Let’s look at a few reasons why meetings play an important part in any organization:-

  • Better decisions – Although there are few instances where decisions are not made at meetings due to some reasons, but most of the time meetings play a vital role in the decision making process. This may be due to the fact that in the setting of a meeting, different individuals are able to put in their own perspectives which sometimes shed light on some key issues which are being pondered on.
  • Better resolution of conflicts – Conflicts are expected to arise in any professional environment. Sometimes these conflicts don’t get resolved and they end up inflicting damage on the work environment. Meetings provide a safe environment for the conflicting parties to sit down and discuss their problems and reach a mutually accepted decision.
  • Thorough follow-up and follow-through – What is actually important is not what happens during a meeting, but what happens after it. The decisions taken during a meeting give purpose and direction to employees. They feel more motivated because they are given an opportunity to present their individual ideas and perspectives and in the process are made to feel important and a part of the team.

I believe there is truth in the fact that meetings do take up a lot of time but at the same time meetings are important and they need to be conducted at regular intervals. Meetings have more merits than demerits. However, there are a few steps that can be taken to ensure that meetings are more productive rather than time consuming. Here are a few tips to make workplace meetings more effective:-

  • The objective of the meeting should be precise and it should be understood by all who are present for the meeting.
  • Only invite those individuals to the meeting who are relevant for the topic being discussed.
  • Start and end the meeting punctually so as to wrap up the work in a timely fashion.
  • Ensure there are break intervals during the meeting to negate wavering attention and boredom.
  • Avoid using PowerPoint presentations. A visual aid is usually helpful but a PowerPoint presentation tends to become the oft-used crutch by a weak speaker who struggles to engage the audience without it.
  • Closed boardroom meetings might be the norm in a workplace, but in a one-on-one scenario doing something different might actually be beneficial. For example, talk-and-walk nature meetings are becoming very popular in recent times.
  • Make sure meetings don’t end up being mundane and sad. Efforts should be made to keep the atmosphere a bit light so as to keep everybody’s attention on the topic at hand.
  • Unless it’s absolutely necessary, avoid using your laptops for the duration of the meeting.

Student Entry by – Himanshu Khound (Class of 2019)

Jul
29

Unlock the Power of Internship

Before anything else, here’s a scenario:

Google HR exec – Sanjeev and Rajeev, you both have been shortlisted. Tell me why should I hire you?

Sanjeev – I have excellent grades, 2 presentations, 1 department project, excellent co-curricular experience and a recommendation letter.

Rajeev – I have all that, plus I did a summer internship at Microsoft.

Google HR exec to Rajeev – You’re hired!

This short but highly probable conversation underlines one very important fact: Howw crucial an internship is in one’s career.

The internship at FIIB

What is it?

An internship is an opportunity offered by an employer to fresh graduates to work at a firm for a limited period of time. It’s a job before the actual job; a peek into your career before it actually starts. You will go to the office, have real responsibilities, learn new skills while utilize your existing ones and get paid.

Why should you?

  1. Work ex – matters – According to a survey, 44 out of 100 employers value relevant work experience more than any other qualifications while recruiting.
  1. Apply classroom knowledge to real-life situations – Internships give a way to utilize your knowledge base and expand it by applying it in situations where the outcome is not the number of marks you score in an exam but something that could affect a whole company.
  1. Discover interest and passion – Internships can be used as tool to identify and discover what you would be good at. Say, you are hired as a marketing intern at a company that exposed you to content development. Now, if you like writing, but never gave it a serious thought as a career catalyst, this internship can help you develop the necessary skillset required to become a content developer.
  1. Opens many doors – When you go out looking for your first full-time job, make no mistake, an internship can and does open many doors for you. Your internship experience could be that differentiating factor to get you hired. (as is apparent from the scenario cited above). Pro Tip: make sure to get a recommendation letter from your internship mentor. That will do wonder for you!
  1. Earn college credit and even money – It’s a win-win situation any way you look at it. You not only get extra credit points at the college for your internship but also get to earn your pocket money. I can’t think of a better deal than this, can you?

When should you?

 Companies hire interns round the year, so ideally you can apply aanytime However, it is best to contact your college’s career cell that manages and oversees the internship cycle to initiate the process. For better flexibility, you can also opt for work-from-home internships, but know that if these are not part of your college scope, you won’t receive any credits or time leniency. Money and work ex, though, you will surely get.

How should you? 

  1. You could talk to the career cell of your college. They are in constant touch with employers and a word of recommendation from your professor will act as a catalyst.
  2. Use the internet and search for internship openings on sites like internshala.com, letsintern.com and many more. Many company websites also post internship requirements and ask you to mail your resume directly to them.

Things to remember

  1. Think long term, rather than short term.

While many internships offer stipend or monetary compensations, not all do. So, it’s advisable to not keep money as the top priority. The sheer work experience you receive from a non-paying internship can sometimes help you land a big package first job.

  1. Make mistakes but learn from them.

 For an internship is your first foray into the business arena, mistakes are bound to happen. You should just ensure not to get disheartened or demotivated by them. Always remember that your office seniors and mentors (both in college and office) are there to guide you and correct your course. But yes, constantly making the same mistakes over and over again is not appreciated. So, learn from them…and make new ones.

  1. Treat it as a stepping stone and not a summit.

 Of course, if you do rockstar work during your internship, you could get hired by the same employer full time, too. Still, it’s best to remember that an internship is just you dipping your toe in the ocean that the business world is. Your internship mantra should be: to work hard and smart, to discover and develop your skillsets, to broaden your business network, and then once it’s finished, to explore further and further.

In short, an internship can pave your way to that dream job. It can change your life.

So, stand out. Find an internship today.

Student Entry by – Akash Patra

Jun
19

My Internship with Paharpur Group

FIIB has been constantly contributing to my development as an aspiring HR professional. My job responsibility is an end to end recruitment and a major part of my job involves around receiving a vacant position from the various companies of the Paharpur group along with a Job Description that defines my search criteria to hunt for the relevant candidates. I use Naukri.com to source CVs and calls are made to the potential candidates to verify their eligibility and validate their interests for the new job. Only after connecting all dots between the company criteria, job description and the apprehensions & skills of the potential candidate is the candidate called for the first round of interview, which is generally an IQ test.

I am approximately halfway through my internship period, and it has been a great learning experience so far. The 1st year spent at FIIB has facilitated me very well in spending my time in a corporate. The myriad of subjects that were taught in 1st year relating to the basics of business and corporate environment and knowledge of various small operations and processes that constitute a business have proven to be extremely helpful. I was also provided with the necessary guidelines and training before I assumed office and that has helped me in maintaining a balance between office, college, and personal life.

Although I’m in the HR department, knowledge about other departments does help in understanding how corporate functions. For ex-

  • Business Statistics helped in understanding the huge return on investment given by Naukri.com by providing access to over 50 million CVs thereby saving a huge time on headhunting and random calling.
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Behavior in Organizations facilitated in knowing the various functions in HR and how people tend to behave in specific work environments, and also how to see the other side of things or looking at situations from a different angle.
  • Operations Management helped in realizing that Operations are a part of each core function of a business.
  • Business Ethics made me think about the difference between the conventional way of doing things and the best way of doing them. This subject has and will always be a part of my development- both professional and personal.
  • Strategy Management has enabled me to identify the pertaining business practices in the office, and again allowed me to ponder on the best way of performing functions.
  • Change Management allowed me to accept changes, whether good or bad in the best possible way so that my learning and performance are hampered the least.

The first year at FIIB has been vital in grooming me up for the corporate world and establishing a firm ground on which I can lay my for my career foundation on. However, the key takeaway here is that if you are willing to learn, step outside of your comfort zone and expose yourself to new situations and experiences, you will be given ample opportunities and learnings on how to further improve and develop yourself.

-Student entry by Shiva Verma

Jun
01

My Acculturation Program Experience

In the past one year at FIIB, I have participated in many events, but in terms of fun, excitement and learning, this 2-day Acculturation Program was something else entirely. Acculturation means understanding and assimilating the culture, values, tradition and psychology of a different country. This year, the students from Sam M. Walton College of Business, USA, visited our campus for the same. What an amazing experience it was! My teammates from Sam Walton—MacKenzi Owens, Elizabeth Arredondo and Chris Sheldon—were the loveliest people I have ever met in my life. They were really friendly and very funny. My two-day journey with them was totally amazing.

Day 1 started with some business lectures followed by a cultural program in which students from both colleges participated. It was a very entertaining program that acted as an icebreaker between us. We were then appointed teammates, with whom we took some selfies and started our Learning Day activities. We traveled to 3 different places in Delhi, i.e. Iskcon Temple, Lajpat Nagar Market and DLF Emporio mall to understand how management of various activities is done at these places. We also understood how marketing, financing, and operations is carried out there. My teammates were curious to know how religious Indians are, how businesses run and compete with each other, how efficient is our government, social issues Indians face, Indian food and languages spoken by us, and much more. I was happy that I was able to answer all the queries they had in their mind. Even I asked them a few questions about their country, which they happily answered. In between, we also had a nice lunch which they absolutely loved. All in all, by the end of the day we had learned about management system adopted by Iskcon Temple, product pricing strategy and promotional techniques used by business owners at Lajpat Nagar Market and luxury marketing and operations management at DLF Emporio mall. After returning to college, all teams had a pizza break followed by presentations in the auditorium in which we shared our day’s learnings. My teammates were super happy when we were declared winners. We also received Rs.3000 as cash prize.

Day 2 began with Amazing Race, in which each team had to reach a specified location in Delhi using five means of public transportation, with the winning team being the one first to reach. We were given some money to spend for transportation. This was most exciting for my teammates because they had a gala time travelling in auto, bus, E-rickshaw, cab and metro. But, since we could not find the appropriate route to the final destination, we lost. We were disappointed yet joyous at the same time. My teammates also went for shopping and purchased some Indian ethnic goods. Finally, we all went to Hauz Khas Village to party hard.

All the students of Sam Walton College loved the things we did for them. While bidding goodbye, we also exchanged gifts and thanked each other for the wonderful time. As now we have become good friends, we will stay connected even if we live miles away. I would like to thank FIIB for giving me this amazing lifetime experience through this Acculturation Program.

Student entry by – Akash Patra

May
04

Leadership Vs Management

 

Gone are the times when the terms ‘manager’ and ‘leader’ were used interchangeably. With ever-evolving business paradigms and a smarter globally-conscious audience, these terms have come to be interlinked, sure, but are now clearly demarcated. Consequently, to become a trustworthy leader or a better manager, you would first need to understand what the terms mean and entail.

Fundamentally an employee of an organization, a manager is responsible for carrying out four crucial functions—planning, organizing, leading and controlling. And before the term ‘leading’ confuses you, it would be important to remember that even managers can have leadership qualities, but to a certain degree. How efficiently do they effectuate these qualities makes the difference between their subordinates complying with their demands out of will or obligation. The managers also follow certain protocols and use quantitative data to maintain the status quo and meet organizational goals and objectives. Because they are held responsible for their own actions as well as of their subordinates, they enjoy the privilege of promoting, hiring, ousting or rewarding employees based on their performance and behavior.

Leadership, contrastingly, is the ability of an individual to inspire or influence others towards a common goal. Leadership is about three things: to listen, to inspire and to empower. Effective leadership includes strong character and communication skills, along with traits like honesty, integrity, trustworthiness and ethics. A leader is a person who creates an inspiring vision for the future, motivates and inspires people to engage with that vision and manages the delivery of the vision. He finds answers to challenges, shows optimism and provides positive energy to people around them. He is someone who looks at the bigger picture and plans long-term goals accordingly.

FIIB is not just a business college providing a PGDM degree, but rather it’s an educational institution where young managers are nurtured and future leaders are born. It makes us truly prepared for today’s business challenges with quality activities and projects that push us to walk an extra mile, thoughtful case studies that make us think beyond and come up with a feasible solution and exciting conclaves and events that teach us teamwork and leadership. FIIB Alumni who are now spread across the world in top business roles are a testimony to that.

by Akash Ranjan Patra

Class of 2018

Apr
27

5 Business Lessons from Baahubali: The Beginning

Why did Kattapa kill Baahubali? This is the question that’s been irking the cinemagoers after the phenomenal success of the first part. Baahubali: The Conclusion will surely satiate that curiosity. For MBA aspirants, entrepreneurs and anybody with interest in business management, however, it’s worth knowing that there’s more to the first chapter than meets the eye—and don’t we all love what meets the eye?

Below are 5 commandments from Baahubali: The Beginning that when efficiently followed will refine your business acumen and keep you sure and confident, no matter the odds or the competition.

  1. Thou shall research, and then some

Reel Life: After finding out that a spy has stolen the military secrets of the Mahishmati kingdom, Sivagami (Raj Mata) sends both the princes—Baahubali & Bhallala—to catch him and extract valuable information on possible threats.

Real Life: An integral aspect of any business venture is extensive research, be it about target customers, marketplace trends, production processes or financial practices. This can help you predict trends, spot opportunities and avoid potential problems.

  1. Thou shall strategise smartly and prepare proactively

Reel Life: To oust Kalakeya from the kingdom, Mahishmati’s core leadership comes up with a sound game plan backed by effective strategies. From checking out all possible means to make a foray into the enemy camp to deploying all available resources, the leaders make their way into the battle field prepared and confident.

Real Life: In the business world, the importance of setting lucid goals and preparing for contingencies can’t be stressed enough. It’s only when your employees make rational decisions and come up with pragmatic strategies do they nurture excellence.

  1. Thou shall use thy resources creatively

Reel Life: Partial towards his son, Bijjala Deva provides Bhalla Deva with the best weapons, while Baahubali is given inefficient second-grade weapons. Considering this an opportunity to innovate and improvise, he devises a way to use an oil-drenched cloth to set his enemies ablaze.

Real Life: In any business venture, especially in its nascent stage, there will always be the dearth of resources. But a leader should always take this opportunity to come up with innovative solutions and creative strategies to gain an upper-hand against the competitors.

  1. Thou shall inspire

Reel Life: Seeing Kalakeya’s army invade their territory, Mahishmati’s army loses all hope of victory and begins chanting about death. It is then that Baahubali rises to the occasion to use his motivational skills to encourage his comrades to never give up and give their best.

Real Life: It’s only when employees start losing morale or motivation at the workplace that a necessity for a true leader emerges; a leader who will not only stand steadfast with them but will also resuscitate their impetus and inspire them with an example.

  1. Thou shall not allow ambition cloud compassion

Reel Life: During the war, Kalakeya holds the innocent citizens of Mahishmati as a defence against the incoming attack. Bhalla Deva, blinded by his thirst to kill Kalakeya and become the king, remorselessly rampages through the citizens and kills a lot of them. Unlike Bhalla Deva, Baahubali first secures his innocent people before proceeding to attack Kalakeya.

Real Life: Instead of just focusing on acquiring market shares and winning over the competition, any business venture should first concentrate on the well-being of its stakeholders—a big part of which are its employees and workers. A leader should always remember that care and compassion are as integral to a company’s growth as ambition and vigour.

For leaders of tomorrow who aspire to become Baahubalis of their respective domains, there can be no better place to hone their skills and begin their epic journey than at Fortune Institue of International Business.

Apr
17

Learning inside Vs. outside the class – CIP Journey

Recognizing the need for our future leaders to operate in a global setting, the PGDM course of the college focuses on providing all our courses provide relevant multinational inputs that help learn the best practices in differing socio, legal, cultural environments.  As a summer intern, our students are assigned to projects from various companies. Assignments cover various areas of work throughout the specializations Marketing, Finance, Human Resource Management, Operations Management, Information Systems Management, International Business, Strategy, and Entrepreneurship.

While most of our students have already joined most of the Big 4 organizations for their Internship, we spoke to Akash Patra to give us some insight on the difference he spotted in the classroom learning and learning outside the campus.  Here’s what he had to say:

In order to be a successful manager, it is important to get corporate exposure, which is possible through application of therotical concept into practical one’s.  1st year at FIIB, taught me basic concepts from diverse subjects of management. Individual and group assignments gave me the understanding of working in a team and better understanding of  subjects.  After I used different concepts of class room learning while working on projects in various subjects,  I knew how and where to apply them, which increased my understanding of the fundamental concepts and it’s applicability. Guest lectures were also an add-on for me in understanding various management concepts and thier implementation in the industry.

Understanding concepts in a classroom and applying them practically in real life work environment is a whole new ball game. Internship at Birla Sun Life Insurance is  coming out to be a great opportunity for me to showcase my skills to the company and at the same time get maximum learnings from my 3 months of work. To me, Skill=Concept+Application and Learning=Mistakes+Failures. My 1st week at Birla Sun Life Insurance was really a good start. My primary duty is to make a communication strategy for Birla Sun Life Insurance by analyzing consumer behavior data, understand their values and belief and matching them with Birla Sun Life Insurance product. This is a pretty exciting project to work on and I as an intern will contribute to the growth of Birla Sun Life Insurance.

Internship at Birla Sunlife.

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