As a Faculty of MBA education for sometimes, I was always of the opinion that knowledge is the primary driver of getting a good placement. The more a student is knowledgeable in class, has the ability of critical thinking through debates, discussions and deliberations, the better he/ she is equipped to face the challenges of the interviews and crack the placements. This process of knowledge driven placement would further be augmented by research acumen and presentations leading to a student understanding an issue with a lot of depth and becoming an expert in that field. MBA education in the pre-COVID times was majorly physical where the faculty would take one-on-one sessions, prepare students with knowledge for them to crack the placements. The companies were also in a physical mode where employees were expected to be in the office and hence their evaluation of recruiting the students was also different.
So, based on the company requirements, the MBA institutes would prepare their students by providing appropriate training and education to cater to the needs of the career market. Those MBA institutions like Globsyn Business School, whose motto was to create industry ready and industry running professionals, left no stone unturned to sync the requirements of the industry with the training and education of the students.
When COVID-19 hits the world, the corporate and the academic institutions were taken aback. With work-from-home as the new normal, both corporate and academic institutions grappled to be agile to the changing ways of life and the mode of deliverables. The corporate organizations were quick enough to understand that while COVID-19 paralyzed the movements of individuals in the company, it positively enhances the working hours and create an eight job into a sixteen hour job. Moreover, their infrastructural cost came down as fixed costs became irrelevant and the cost of things like electricity, internet, and general infrastructure was no longer required as employees were using all of these things from their homes at their own cost. So, in a nutshell, work became more, cost became less and benefit to cost ratio as well as return on investment became higher. Unless a dire necessity for an employee to physically be present, employees were asked to be at home and continue their work. The advantage that the corporate has seen of work-from-home is not going to die very soon. COVID-19 has exposed an economical version of work-from-home which was under the cover or sidelined for quite sometimes. With this re-alignment of the corporate working to become resilient in the world of tomorrow, the expectations from Business Schools are also bound to change. The Post-COVID environment of the corporate would like to embrace the best of both the worlds – online and offline. The homogeneous form of communication is going to be blended into a hybridized format of communication. In the post COVID hybridized environment, companies would look for skilled resources to tackle the complexities of a hybridized environment and embrace the technological infrastructure and advancements. The business schools thus need to train students through a process of education to handle a hybridized environment and thereby make the students ready for such a corporate world. The supply needs to meet the demand always.
There have been business schools like Globsyn Business School, who have incorporated such a hybridized environment in its DNA. Every process in such a business school trains students to absorb knowledge through a heutagogical approach and mature them for the future corporate world. The hybridized way of life through heutagogy would enhance student’s acumen to handle the complexities of a hybridized corporate world that they are going to face. Every MBA education should be imparted in a way that students are ready for the hybridized corporate environment not only academically but also has the structural knowledge of handling the complexities of a blended environment. Training for being placed thus requires additional inputs to make students corporate ready. The parameters of recruitment would also change from body language to digital dexterity and from solving problems offline to solving problems both offline and online. MBA education thus requires some reimagining in the delivery process to realign the hybridized needs of the corporate. Developing a heutagogical skill set among the students would reap rich dividends to make them enriched resources for the career of tomorrow.
Prof. (Dr.) Sabyasachi Dasgupta
Faculty, Marketing & Research
Globsyn Business School