Planet-I never sleeps. That’s the catchy phrase Indian Institute of Management, Indore (IIM-I) students use to describe life inside their 194-acre campus located on a hillock on the outskirts of Madhya Pradesh's business capital.
A cricket tournament held under floodlights is proof that work and play don't stop at IIM-I.
“Cricket is fun and it teaches us teamwork for achieving targets,” said K.R. Srihari (21), a final year postgraduate programme student. “But mostly, the night passes in a wink with assignments, projects and case studies, amid breaks at the night mess (for) munching parathas and noodles.”
However, away from the arch lights, Planet-I is doing some serious re-thinking on the larger role of B-schools, and wants to make management education socially relevant.
“Providing ordinary medicine to primary health centres can be more challenging than managing Federal Express,” IIM-I Director N. Ravichandran told Hindustan Times.
To create what it hopes would be socially aware managers and to directly involve students in managing “under-managed sectors of the economy”, IIM-I is tweaking its curriculum as part of an ambitious five-year plan. Students will continue to aspire for the well-known job markets, but they will also be taught to contribute to their city, state and country, Ravichandran said.
Students of the institute are already working on case studies with topics as varied as the success of Mumbai’s dabbawalas, the police’s management of religious yatras in Ahmedabad, the ‘Jaipur foot’ offered at economical prices to the handicapped and the management of Delhi’s Swaminarayan temple.
The institute plans to divide its students into groups of six and send them to districts across Madhya Pradesh to spend a week with district collectors and “understand that management is not all about boardroom decisions”.
Even apart from understanding the changing role of managers, these are challenging times for students. With the global economy not in the best of shape, students realise that even an IIM tag isn't enough to bag that dream job.
"The experience of our seniors in the last couple of years has taught us not to look for blockbuster salaries," said Ravi Mehta (24), a second year IIM-I student. "Decent perks are more than enough. But, the job profile should be satisfying."
The average annual compensation offered during campus placements in 2009 was Rs 10.29 lakh, a 21 per cent decline from 2008. The median annual compensation offered in 2009 was Rs 9 lakh as against Rs 10.5 lakh in the previous year.
Placements in 2009 also saw candidates accepting a range of profiles across public sector firms such as Bharat Petroleum, Steel Authority of India and Union Bank of India.
Chartered accountant and IIM-I alumnus from the 2009 batch, Prashant Somani, opted out of campus placements and opened an academy to coach students interested in careers in accountancy and commerce. “IIM-Indore virtually shaped my personality and career. We had to spend 12 days with an NGO, visiting slums,” Somani said. “We saw things that could not be seen in air-conditioned rooms.”
His batchmate Anindaya Biswas added, “IIM-Indore taught me practical aspects of businesses processes and management.”
2009: Rs 63 lakh
2008: Rs 45 lakh
2007: Rs 35 lakh
Placement season days
Director, Fitch Ratings
Head, Product Management, Deutsche Asset Management (India) Pvt. Ltd
Director, Private Banking,
CFO, Boston Analytics
Head, Anti-virals, Ranbaxy
Bharat Petroleum, Steel Authority of India, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, Infosy