Monday, 26 October 2015

What Should You Do To Join IIM?

Indian Institute of Management (IIM) is the dream destination for MBA aspirants. The selection process for an IIM is an extremely rigorous process, which requires a lot of preparation. All of the IIMs follow 2 stages of selection process- written test (CAT) and GWPI (group discussion/written ability test/personal interview). Selection of the candidates depends on various factors such as written exam, academic background, work experience, reservation category, gender etc.

1st Stage: Qualify The CAT Exam: The first step to secure admission in an IIM is qualifying the Common Admission Test (CAT). CAT is a highly competitive exam that is taken by more than 2 lakh candidates. It is a computer based test held in India to facilitate the admission process to the Master of Business Administration Programme (MBA) in top business schools of India. This exam is conducted to analyze the skills of the students in areas such as English, Mathematics and Logical Reasoning. 

CAT consists of questions from Quantitative Aptitude, Data Interpretation, Verbal Ability and Logical Reasoning. To crack the CAT exam, you first need to analyze your strength and weaknesses and then start to work upon them. Verbal ability is the most significant part of CAT exam. The best way to prepare for this section is by reading books, magazines, blog, posts, novels etc. Divide your time during exam such that you would have the chance to read and answer as many questions as possible.

To get a call from IIM Ahmedabad or Calcutta, you have to score above 99 percentile in the CAT exam. The criteria for getting a call from IIM varies year per year, but the cut-off percentile always remains high. IIM Bangalore doesn’t have strict criteria for percentile cut-off. They generally consider your academic weightage and work experience. 
2nd Stage: Interview/GD: Interviews at the IIMs are generally taken by IIM officials. The officials can be faculty, ex-faculty and sometimes even alumni.  At IIM-A, the interviews are opposite to what people believe. The interviews are generally open ended and everything that interviewer asks you, is related to you or something you talk about. If you are experienced then it’ll work in your favor, but it can be against you if you are not prepared. 

For a Group Discussion (GD) round, be prepared for both sides of the debate. What will happen if everyone has taken up one side of the argument; in such a case you will not be able to make your stance clear. Even if not, taking up an opposite stand will help you stand out a little from the mass.  
Sometimes it doesn’t matter that you are experienced or not. Make interviewers believe that you are a good candidate and nothing can stop you. The most important thing you should know is that they are looking for a reason not to fail you, but select you.  

Monday, 19 October 2015

How Can You Make Yourself Employable in 4 Years of Engineering?

Thousands of students are graduating as engineers in India, but a sizable proportion among them don’t find jobs or are employed outside their core stream. Making a decision to go for engineering is a very wise decision but there are also very high chances of things going south if you do not make yourself employable between those 4 years. This passage enlists effective and simple tips with you can make yourself employable and get closer to a dream job after 4 years of engineering. 

1. Right Selection of Engineering College

It’s very hard to select the right institute or college but this is a very important determinant that will hugely impact on your employ ability skills. You have to choose the right college carefully after clearing engineering entrance exams. There are so many top engineering colleges in India. You can start exploring the right institute or college by

  • Learning more about the engineering colleges and the reputation and facilities offered by the college.
  • Answer questions to find what is more important to you.
  • Try to get valuable advice from college educators and students.

2. Brush Up The Skills
Always remember that every organization wants a right candidate for the right job, and current organizations are looking for the people who hold the critical thinking and problem solving capabilities. Becoming a good team player is a necessary talent that one must possess to lead teams.

3. Learning

Learning is all about wanting to learn newer things and acquiring modifying, reinforcing, existing knowledge etc. It's also about being able to take on new tasks and to develop or improve your learning skills.
These are some of the ways through which you can improve your learning capacity:

  • Join online courses
  • Try to do some research into learning skills 

4. Get involved in Extra-Curricular Activities 

Involvement in extra-curricular activities on your resume will put you ahead among others in a job interview. Your exploration of different subjects, language and other activities will help you to grab a job easily.

  • Get involved in various extra-curricular activities that will help you to improve your soft skills as well as team building skills.
  • Sports clubs and other social activities will help you to improve your leadership skills that are transferable to the business world.
  • Taking part in activities is best way to become more self-confident and overcome shyness.

5. Judgment Skills

Choosing a carrier is the most important decision for college students. Knowing the benefits of the course, your strengths and the skills you have possess will help you extremely in making a decision. Development of decision making skills is very important as organizations are in search of individuals who have exceptional decision making skills and can lead cross-functional teams effectively.
Here are some important tips that can help to take a decision:

  • Availability of jobs
  • Your talent and employ ability strength
  • Work environment

These are the major areas where you need to focus to make yourself employable by the end of four years of engineering.

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Which is better MBA or PGDM?

The task of differentiating between an MBA and a PGDM degree often leads the aspirants of management studies into an undesirable conundrum. This article aims to differentiate between these two management degrees and help young aspirants develop an understanding of what both the courses have to offer and how beneficial they are.  

The eligibility criteria for most MBA and PGDM courses offered by different institutes/universities in the country are similar to a great extent. Both MBA and PGDM can be pursued by any individual possessing a bachelor’s degree in any discipline from a recognized university or institution. Exams like CAT, MAT, GMAT, XAT, CMAT, ATMA etc. are conducted to select suitable candidates for both the programs. 

Differences between MBA and PGDM:

While both MBA and PGDM offer higher education in the field of management studies, there are various factors that create a wide distinction between them.

The very basic difference between an MBA and a PGDM degree is that MBA can only be offered by a University whereas PGDMs are offered by autonomous institutes. In India, colleges offering MBA must have an affiliation to a university that is duly recognized by UGC. This is not so in the case of autonomous institutes offering PGDM. 

The affiliation to UGC necessitates the approval of the program’s curriculum by the UGC, which brings in the second difference – the curriculum. An MBA program follows a guidelines-based curriculum which remains very rigid and hence, provides very little room for flexibility and eccentricity. A PGDM program follows an industry relevant curriculum; it aims to make the students ready for the job market.   

The course curriculum plays a quintessential role in helping students deal with the business environment which they’ll be facing immediately after graduating. 

The business environment is dynamic and unpredictable. An evolving curriculum will help the students to understand, control and mould the turbulence arising in the business arena to their advantage. 

An MBA program, with its rigid curriculum, will lay most of the focus on academics and examinations, which is somewhat different to what a PGDM program aims to do. PGDM program follows an evolving curriculum (industry-oriented, to be precise), which aims to cultivate soft-skills in students. While MBA provides a holistic approach, PGDM offers a wider scope to master specific areas of management and understand its nuances. If the cost factor is taken into consideration, the fee for MBA programs is relatively lesser than that of PGDM programs. 

Which is better?

It depends on what one wishes to gain from the course. A PGDM course is beneficial to those who wish to specialize in a certain domain while an MBA program is beneficial for those looking for a general overview of the business administration. 

University affiliated colleges have established curriculum and have expert faculties on board to provide direction to the students while PGDM also offers eccentricity and wider scope for aspects like innovation, flexibility and specializations.

The employers only look out for talent possessed by the individual regardless of whether the degree pursued is MBA or PGDM. 

What actually matters more than the name of the degree is the reputation of the management schools awarding it. The institutes known for producing extraordinary talents are the ones visited by big multi-national business establishments. The top management schools in the country such as the IIMs, ISB, XLRI, MDI, MICA and IMI offer PGDM degrees which are highly valued in the industry. Even if the placement records are taken into considerations, institutes offering PGDM courses display a better picture, such as the ones mentioned above.

One must take all these points into consideration while deciding between an MBA program and a PGDM program.

Monday, 12 October 2015

Scope of one-year MBA in India

One year MBA programs have gained a lot of prominence in India in the last few years. Working professionals are increasingly moving towards opting for one-year MBA programs rather than going for two-year MBA programs offered at premium business schools. One year MBA programs are seen to be more appealing to the working professionals because in just a year they are given all the necessary training to take up senior managerial roles in organizations.

One-year MBA is a power-packed program which is very carefully crafted to expose students to the complex and dynamic world of business and help them explore and develop their managerial skills. The course moves extremely fast (faster than a regular two-year MBA) and this keeps the students to think on their feet. 

Advantages of one-year MBA program:

1. The experience earned prior to the commencement of the one-year MBA program is appreciated and accepted by the business schools. Since the schools give prominence to diversity inside the classrooms, it emphasizes on selecting individuals with the most diverse set of skills and experiences. This pool of diversity will increase the probability of exploring multiple nuances in the business arena.

2. Going for a one-year MBA saves up on the opportunity cost. Saving one year’s post qualification salary and early entry into work are the benefits of joining a one-year MBA program.

3. One-year MBA graduates are given a global exposure and are also hired for senior managerial roles with higher salaries, while two-year MBA graduates are often selected for entry level profiles such as management trainees because of the lack of work experience.

Limitations of one-year MBA program:

1. Students pursuing a one-year MBA program might lose-out on extra-curricular activities. Since the one-year program has the same curriculum as that of a two-year MBA program, the whole course is squeezed into a single year. This lays a lot of pressure on the students which results in minimum active participation in extra-curricular activities. 

2. The cost of one-year MBA program is generally higher than that of a two-year MBA program. Premium b-school Indian School of Business (ISB) charges about 25 lakhs for its PGP programme. One-year programmes at IIMs will also cost between 14 lakhs and 21.5 lakhs whereas the fee for two-year MBA programmes at IIMs (subsidized by government) is between 10 lakhs and 15 lakhs. 

Top Business Schools offering one-year MBA programs in India:

Thursday, 1 October 2015

10 Things You Should Know Before Joining An MBA Program

MBA aspirants are often seen confused about various things when it comes to choosing the right MBA program and the right B-School. The confusion crops from various aspects that one has to think of before joining an MBA program. This confusion often leaves the student indecisive which is usually succeeded by dropping the plan of going for an MBA or ending up at the wrong place years later.   

Therefore, having a sound knowledge about MBA and the numerous aspects determining whether or not to go for an MBA is a must. To pacify and bring some clarity to the worried and clouded minds, Kampuzz brings a list of 10 things one must know before joining an MBA program. 

1. Types of MBA Programs and Their Value in Current Market
B-Schools in India offer management programs with specializations in varied areas such as Marketing, Operations, Human Resource Management, International Trade and Business, Communications, Business Management, Healthcare etc. Before going for an MBA one must choose to go for the programme that best fits one’s personality. This is often confusing at first. 

Most B-schools expose students to different areas of management in the first year and then offer specialization in the areas preferred by the student in the second year. 
Institutes such as IIFT and MICA offer management courses in specialized fields like Foreign Trade and Communications. These courses have great demand in the market. Placement packages offered to the graduating students from these institutes are mind-blowing. 

2. Cost/Fee structure of the Program
The cost of doing an MBA program is high. Doing an MBA programme from good business school will cost you anything between 10 lakhs and 15 lakhs. 

Good business schools have arrangements with banks willing to extend educational loans to the students. This is extremely helpful for the students finding it difficult to fund their education. The pay packages offered to most MBA graduates cover the cost incurred over the whole duration of the program within a few years.

3. Background of the Faculty
Another determining factor is the faculty that the institute comprises of. What makes a business school worth all that hefty investment is the quality of faculty present in it. This aspect is rarely given a considerable amount of attention by MBA aspirants but a good research into the backgrounds of the present faculty will always be beneficial. 

4. Placement Record of the institute
This is perhaps the most researched criteria that MBA aspirants consider while deciding to join a management program. Placement records play a key role as it provides hints to the types of companies coming for the placement drive in the campus and the different job roles offered to the students. The institutes having good companies regularly visiting the campus for placements are the ones you should lookout for.

5. Alumni Network (are the alumni happy?)
Another important aspect to be taken into consideration is the answer to the question – ‘Are the alumni happy?’ This question will give you an idea about how successful the business school was in mentoring students and showing them the right career paths. Talking to alumni and currently enrolled students about their experiences in the institute should give you an insight to this question.

A good B-school will have a grand network of alumni and this network is beneficial for all students graduating from that particular B-school. Alumni relation is another important determinant.

6. Scholarships and Financial Assistance
Some institutes offer financial assistance to students from weak financial backgrounds and many institutes offer scholarships to meritorious students. MBA aspirants should lookout for such options which can ease a lot of pressure while pursuing a management program.

7. International Exposure
Student exchange programmes offer a lot of global exposure to the students. Before joining for any programme, one must take a note of the number of seats on offer for the exchange programme and the reputation of the institute/university collaborating for the same. Exposure to different cultures, mindsets and perspectives is a sure deal if the classrooms have presence of foreign students and faculties. 

8. College Culture
Before enrolling for a programme, one must also consider if the MBA college environment and culture is the one that suits you. You should ascertain whether or not you’d feel comfortable living in the environment offered by your college. Most b-schools have extra-curricular activities after regular classes which go on till midnight. This can create huge pressure on studies. Before joining an MBA program one must be very certain of his/her ability to handle the pressure that mounts up.  

9. Peers
Your peers in the B-School will have an enormous impact on the wholesome understanding that you develop during the duration of the programme. The more diverse the crowd is the more likely it is that you’ll develop a wider scope of understanding. Learning to overcome cross-cultural and linguistic barriers comes in handy if the campus crowd consists of students from different geographical areas. The diversity in the profiles of your peers also depends on their graduation streams, work experience and various other aspects.   

10. Pedagogy
The pedagogy is another important aspect that one must take into consideration while choosing an MBA program or B-school. If the school follows traditional or archaic methods of teaching, then the huge sum being invested by you is most probably going to waste. Business world is dynamic and unpredictable.  Newer and innovative methods must be used by professors to make future managers identify change and use it to their advantage. One must ascertain whether learning is just confined to classrooms or does it also extend to field work also, before joining an MBA program.