How Top 5 Myths about MBA | Management Education Debunked

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Management Education or MBA one of the most popular career options in India. But along with the popularity of MBA, several myths associated with it have perpetrated the management education domain over the years. These myths, which have now become part of the popular narrative and to an extent, shape the perception of students and in a few cases even of few faculty members. Prof. Bhartendu Nath Srivastava, Former Director-in-charge, IIM-Calcutta helps us debunk such myth and understand what truly management education is!

Myth 1 - Top leaders base all their decisions on data:

It is often believed that business managers, especially those who occupy the leadership positions, only work on the basis of data and its analysis. This might not be completely true. Many a times, mangers also depend upon intuition or their ‘gut-feel’, as it is termed in the common parlance. Managers, who have had significant experience in a particular industry often depend upon their ‘sixth sense’ to take important decision, despite having tools like data analytics and Big Data within their reach.

Myth 2 - Everything is well-planned at higher levels of management:

Another popular myth is that at higher level, everything is very well planned and that is what aids the decision making process. This is another myth. Many a times, the decision making process at the higher level of an organization happens in a very chaotic manner. It may be because of the difficulty circumstances or due to lack of time; but not everything is always well-planned in the management domain.

Myth 3 - In a team, everybody should have the same approach to problem-solving:

Another popular belief about management education is that everyone works as a team and that because we have all the data and its analysis before us, it would mean that everyone will have the same approach to solve a problem. But, more often than not, there are a lot of differences among the people who occupy the leadership positions in the organizations. They interpret data in different manner and have different world-views which often translate into difference of opinion among the leaders.

Myth 4 - B-schools are dominated by male students from affluent backgrounds:

This is another myth that B-schools are often dominated by male students, especially by those who are from well-to-do economic background. This is completely untrue when it comes to IIMs and other top B-schools in India. Top management colleges in India follow standard guidelines and process issued by the MHRD to admit students. The transparent admission process at IIMs, grant additional points to female candidates during the selection process. Similarly, students from socially and economically weaker backgrounds are also offered the advantage of the reservations as per the government norms. Therefore, the student diversity on campus is not as skewed as believed by many students.

Myth 5 - Qualifying CAT and joining a good B-school is the ultimate victory:

Many students believe that they have won the battle by qualifying in the CAT exam or by being selected for admission to IIMs. However, joining a B-school is only the start of a very long and arduous journey for a student. Now, being among the best brains of the country, the competition for success is even stiffer as compared to CAT or any other MBA entrance exam. So, students who are coming to a B-school must overcome this myth before they join an MBA programme.

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