Saturday, July 17, 2010

ONE-YEAR MBA

class of 2010 at IIM-Lucknow’s Noida campus was brimming with enthusiasm. Quite a few of them gave up well-paying positions to enrol in this full-time one-year residential course for mid-and-senior-level managers at a time when others would hang on tenaciously to their jobs.

During the 15-minute break between classes BW got a chance to meet the IPMX students. Most of them were quite clear that an MBA should be pursued after some work experience and not immediately after graduation.

Says Alok Arora who spent six years at Infosys as a technical architect, “Clarity about what you want to do comes with experience.”

Chetan Yadav, who quit Convergys as senior manager after more than six years on the job, had his own reasons to join the course. “If I had done an MBA 10 years ago, by the time I reached a level of overall responsibility, I would have forgotten a lot of things I learnt. The learning now will help me when I reach a position where my actions will have an impact on the organisation.”

One-year full-time MBA courses pioneered in India by the Hyderabad-based Indian School of Business (ISB) appear to be almost as coveted as the sought after two-year MBA courses at premium institutes of management, if not more. While the debate on whether it is the one-year courses or the regular two-year programmes that churn out better managers continues, the number of applications to institutes offering these courses — ISB, Great Lakes Institute of Management (GLIM), IIMs at Ahmedabad, Bangalore and Kolkata, Xavier Labour Relations Institute and SP Jain Institute of Marketing and Research to name a few — has been steadily increasing.

About 1,400 people applied for IIM-A’s Post Graduate Programme in Management for Executives (PGPX) this year, up from 700 in 2005 when it started. The appeal of these programmes has also broadened with professionals from sectors as varied as healthcare, shipping and the armed forces seeking admission in these courses.

The impeccable placement record is no doubt a key factor for the increasing popularity of the executive MBA programmes. Recruitment has been 100 per cent in many institutes despite a slowdown. As Shailesh Gandhi, chairperson of IIM-A’s PGPX, says, “Seventy per cent of the students in the previous batch were placed by convocation day. The rest were recruited by April.”

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