IIMB: Futuristic & Innovative entrepreneurship lessons for start-up founders
Bangalore: With an upward graph in the number of startups, they have become an essential part of the Indian Business culture. Management schools are also incorporating their existence in the training manual of students.
Rajiv Srivatsa, Co-Founder and COO of Urban Ladder, an alumnus of IIMB and a gold medallist upon graduation, has also accepted the change in the management culture. Urban Ladder has raised $77 million in venture capital funding and has Ratan Tata as one of the investors in its kitty. He says, “There is a lot more focus on entrepreneurship—talks by entrepreneurs, guest lectures and also merging this into the management festivals.” He visits IIM-B as a guest lecturer or to attend an event at least twice a year.
Co-Founder of Infosys and a board member in IIM-B, Kris Gopalakrishnan says that management programs are including topics such as social entrepreneurship and advanced courses in technology management, corporate governance, social networks, digital economy, etc.
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Sourav Mukerji, Dean of Academic Programs at IIMB says, “Then, international schools, like Harvard, Stanford and the others, said, ‘Look it is not just about skills; there has to be a much deeper knowledge-base.’ It was important to have courses that were well-structured with a strong foundation in knowledge.” Initially all the IIMs across the country were set up with a foundation that theoretical knowledge was of utmost importance over anything else. Hence after graduation, with no prior work experience, management graduates especially from IIMs were considered ready to enter the work life.
However, there is drift from this culture now and all the courses and programs taught at IIMs are now more inclusive in nature keeping other aspects in mind as well. He adds, “The business has to care about the environment.”
IIMB has opened an incubation centre, NSRCEL, which incubates or develops new business ideas. 70 successful startups are the take away for this incubation centre with Student Run Ventures, Graduate Run Ventures and MeshLabs Softwares being some of them. In addition to this, IIMB has setup a non-profit incubation centre as well. Michael & Susan Dell Foundation supports this centre and its aim is to set up at least 5 new startups in different sectors like education, child health, financial inclusion, jobs and livelihoods.
Another feather in the cap of IIMB is the introduction of ‘Placement Holidays’ where students can pursue their entrepreneurial ventures after completion of their 2 years of postgraduate study by carrying over their placements.
It is also focusing on developing students skill set by developing effective communication skills and presentation skills among students which are still not up to the mark according to Rajiv Srivatsa, a potential on-campus recruiter.
Sourav Mukerji believes the future of management studies will be way different from what is it today with a huge influence of technology on the way these courses are taught. He says, “Students are usually allowed to take a particular course only after they clear another. Now they will be allowed to set their own pace. How students learn will be driven by students themselves rather than the conventional top-down model.”