Rakesh Mohanty is your typical, confident ‘Gen-Next’ student, who was well aware how B-school rankings by a number of agencies are manipulated. As is increasingly becoming the trend, he decided to pay a personal visit to his shortlisted B-schools.
When Rakesh Mohanty was choosing which business school to attend for his MBA, his decision was largely based on the quality of teaching. Newly graduated, Rakesh was keen on completing his MBA before stepping out into the professional world. “I was very particular about the quality of the teaching,” he says, explaining why he chose KIIT School of Management (KSOM), Bhubaneswar. An Engineering graduate, it didn’t take Rakesh long to realise that past placement records are not a guarantee that corporates will converge on a B-school’s campus. “KIIT is a reputable University, and one of the finest in Odisha. But, the clinching factor for me was that the teacher-student ratio at KSOM is 1:10. Coming from an Engineering background, I knew I’d need greater attention.”
Sunita Kumar, a first Year student at KSOM, has already seen the benefits of the institute’s emphasis on teaching: “60% of the faculty have PhDs and 30% are from IIMs and XLRI’s, at KSOM. There are faculty members who either have been educated or have taught at Universities like Massachusetts, Wisconsin, Durham, Portsmouth, etc. They are IITians, and quite a few come from a CA, CS background. A number of faculty members at KSOM come from a very real background with substantive corporate experience. They know exactly how different parts of the industry work. All in all, I realised I would be in good hands.”
Prof. Biranchi N Panigrahi, Asst. Professor, Finance area, KSOM is an IIM Kozhikode alumni. While discussing on various techniques that he adopts inside the KSOM classroom to make his subject interesting, he elaborates- “I try to make my sessions interactive and ensure student participation through group activities, class discussions and case studies. Apart from this, I try to explain the concepts through real life examples, drawing from my experience in the financial industry. Further, I ensure that students benefit from the course assignments by aligning them as much as possible with the tasks they would get to do on they join corporates.”
The fact that B-schools like KSOM are a part of a University further gives their Management an immense amount of flexibility in imparting multidisciplinary education. “It is actually one of the big reasons why students at KSOM grow exponentially,” says Mr. Anil Bajpai, the Director of KSOM, better known as the COO of Vodafone prior to turning to academia. Dr. Bajpai is himself an alumnus of IIM Ahmedabad. “If a subject has suddenly gained prominence, any other B-school will have to look outside for a subject expert; not at KSOM, since faculty from the concerned department can be allocated to KSOM almost immediately.”
A diverse faculty allows B-schools a certain kind of leverage, because the professors can comprehend and value other fields. B-schools like KSOM have also started to stress the importance of rotating their faculty. When a faculty from one area begins to teach in another, it creates a wider perspective and depth of knowledge for students. They look at rotation as an opportunity to do things they’ve not been able to do thus far.
All said and done, when you cut through the hype and hoopla, the faculty counts above any other factor in a B-school.
To read more about the pool of faculty at KSOM, you may visit: www.ksom.ac.in/faculty