Recession hasn’t forced B-schools into introspection mode

Your Education is Our World

Karmanye vadhikaraste ma phaleshu kadachana (Focus on the task at hand, don’t let your actions hinge on the outcome).

This quote from the Bhagavad Gita, a poem by Persian poet Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi and an Irish prayer are what 100 students at Welingkar Institute of Management in Mumbai pondered upon as part of a 10-hour discussion on wisdom.

The discussion was led by Pradeep Kaipa, faculty member at the Indian School of Business, or ISB, Hyderabad, as an attempt to develop an Indian model of leadership that can be taught and discussed as part of business school curriculum.

Though Kaipa’s research began much before recession hit the world economy, it has gained momentum after the meltdown. “(The recession taught us that) a single-dimensional view of leadership is wrong,” says Ajit Rangnekar, dean, ISB, which is supporting Kaipa’s research to map the DNA of an Indian leader.

Although the times have forced foreign business schools such as Harvard Business School to question the relevance of an MBA, such introspection hasn’t been widespread in Indian schools. “Actually not, I don’t think we had an internal soul-searching,” says Sourav Mukherji, who teaches at the Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore, or IIM-B, and till recently also supervised campus placements.

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