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What they don’t teach you at ISB

Rank 4 Indian School of Business offers an unparalleled peer group experience report Ashok Das

education Updated: Sep 01, 2010 09:42 IST
Ashok Das
Ashok Das

It’s one of the youngest B-schools in the country, and will turn 10 next year. In this short span, the Indian School of Business (ISB), Hyderabad, has established itself as a premier B-school — not only in the country but also the world.

In its January 2010 B-school survey, British business daily FT placed ISB at #12 among the top 100 B-schools in the world. This is the third successive year that the ISB has featured among the top 20 B-schools in the FT list. It was ranked 15th in 2009 and 20th in 2008.

Interestingly, ISB’s flagship PG programme in management is not approved by the All India Council for Technical Education, the nodal agency that accords approval for all MBA courses in the country.

Also, the fees for the one-year course — R18.5 lakh — are quite high by Indian B-school standards. But this has not affected ISB’s appeal among working executives. Only one out of every 120 applicants gets selected.

So, what’s the differentiator?
“What makes the big difference is the in-class learning from your classmates whose experience may vary from five to 20 years,” Nitin Pulayani, an alumnus, currently working with telecom tower company Indus Towers, said.

Another attraction of ISB is its tie-ups with top global B-schools Kellogg, Wharton and the London Business School. This gives ISB students access to globally-relevant curricula, case studies, real-life projects and international faculty.

The school makes an extra effort to reach out to students’ families. It has it all. “Health insurance for your family, housekeeping, play area for kids, part-time jobs on campus for spouses ... and free shuttles to and from the city,” said Jayender Rajgopal, an alumnus.

From an initial class of 126 students in 2001, the school has grown to 577 students. It is expanding by opening another campus at Mohali, Punjab, in 2012.

The school uses the “rolling placements system”, a lateral hiring process spread over several months, giving both recruiters and students time to find the best fit. “What we find significant is they (ISB graduates) easily fit into any work culture. Having gone through the rigorous schedule for one year they are ready to do any kind of role you put them through. And most important is that they don’t come with a know-all mindset,” said T Karunakar, Vice President, HR at Apollo Hospitals, Hyderabad.

Main courses offered: PGP in Management (One-year)
Course fee: R 18.50 lakh
Current batch size: 577
Male-female ratio: 415 (m):162 (f)
Faculty-student ratio: 1:4.3
Placement season: Spread over four months
Number of offers (2010): 541
Highest salary: Not disclosed
Average salary (domestic): R16.47 lakh p.a.
Average salary (international): $129,275
Foreign placements (2010): 60
Famous alumni: Subramanyam Rich (founder of Biotech company Richcore), Anuj Rustagi (Global Brand Head for Lifebuoy at HUL)
Top recruiters: A.T. Kearney, Arthur D. Little, McKinsey & Co., J.P. Morgan
Fun factor: Weekend parties, outings with local-host families

First Published: Aug 31, 2010 11:22 IST