In a conversation with Keerthana, Correspondent, Higher Education Review Magazine, Dr. Veena Jadhav, Associate Dean (MGB), Associate Prof. (Leadership & HRM), SP Jain School of Global Management, shared her views and thoughts on how studying in multiple countries is a game changer for MBA students.
MBA aspirants must make several critical decisions while investing in their MBA qualifications. We are living in a dynamic and uncertain, and ever evolving business environment that calls for agility and adaptability. Not surprisingly, for some MBA aspirants, this is the perfect opportunity to take a plunge and invest in their MBA program and become ‘future ready’ while others may choose to stay in the workforce and gain practical experience.
The trade-off to embrace change and invest in an MBA or maintain the status quo and defer MBA investments is understandably a difficult decision, but the fact remains that MBA aspirants cannot ignore the sweeping effects of these tidal changes and need to make informed choices. With the rise in Global MBA programs, potential MBA students are now faced with an additional dilemma, a choice between a convention¬al single campus program or multi-city, multi-campus MBA learning experience? How do these programs differ from traditional MBA?
Most prestigious MBA programs have a strong core pro¬gram offerings focused on enhancing graduate outcomes. Most B-Schools have fine-tuned their MBA offering to ensure cutting edge curriculum, faculty pool, thriving industry con¬nect, career readiness programs and a vibrant alumni body. These USPs create a strong pull factor amongst aspiring MBA students who share strong values and interests in line with the B-school’s strategy.
So, what makes a multi-campus MBA program distinct to a single campus, stand alone program? The answer can be summarised as ‘global adaptability’! At the heart of a multi-cam¬pus MBA program is strategy designed to offer several unique
learning experiences for MBA participants, to understand their personal leadership and to expand their worldview and ability to embrace change through immersion. Today, more than ever, business world is looking for talent with agile and adaptive mindset, talent that values local diversity and differences and simultaneously embrace global scale and scope. The essence of ‘Global Adaptability’ in a multi-campus MBA program is unfolded below.
”Global adaptability symbolises awareness and appreciation of business environments across different regions and their impact on communities and individuals at large”
Global adaptability can be described as a ‘meta skill’; a skill that enables MBA participants to cultivate curiosity and ability to understand the differences in novel business settings, and to appreciate the finer nuances of cultures and values that shape different business environments.
Global adaptability symbolises awareness and appreciation of business environments across different regions and their im¬pact on communities and individuals at large. It is a complex mix and integration of several key components that collectively generates global adaptability.
Global Business Quotient
Developing an understanding of complex business landscape and the idiosyncrasies of global business environment is an essential element of any MBA program. Given the acceleration in global and digital businesses, the understanding of global business issues through case study discussions in a classroom setting is not sufficient for an MBA participant. In a multi-city MBA programs, participants are exposed to real business challenges across different countries in an immersive manner.
As a potential business leader, MBA students need to develop deeper self-awareness and harness their leadership capabilities. As the business world embraces new age organisations that operate with hybrid or remote work arrangements, it is essential for MBA students to invest in personal leadership development and acquire skills to work across different geographies and collaborate with diverse team members. The ability to deal with ambiguity, uncertainty, and nurture authentic relationships is a critical success factor at workplaces.
The meaning and scope of diversity and inclusion is rapidly expanding, beyond the traditional norms of gender and ethnicity. In today’s interconnected and interdependent world, the definition of diversity is rapidly expanding and embracing diversity in letter and spirit, is both encouraged and in many settings a regularity obligation with far reaching consequences.
The best way to develop understanding, appreciation and embracing diversity, divergent views and practices is immersion in diverse settings. These immersion opportunities are the cornerstone of multi-city MBA programs, one immersive experience has the potential to create a life-changing impression for participants that no amount of reading notes and case studies can substitute! In a well-designed multi-city MBA program, students are pushed beyond their comfort zone on a daily basis, challenging their mindsets, professional skills and lifestyle.
‘Doing good by doing good’ is the new mantra for most businesses. A multi-city MBA program strengthens participants understanding and appreciation of challenges and opportunities faced in driving the Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) agenda in different settings. MBA graduates are often criticised for their emphasis on profits over planet, however in a multi-campus MBA program, a robust curriculum is integrated with select global learning activities to en¬sure that students develop appreciation of real-life issues relating to ethics and sustainability in different country settings. These immersion activities encourage participants to make conscious choices relating to business ethics and governance beyond those covered in classroom settings.
Dr. Veena Jadhav Associate Dean (MGB), Associate Prof. (Leadership & HRM)
Dr. Veena Jadhav holds a Ph.D. from the University of Canberra, Australia, a Masters in Management Studies from Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies, Mumbai, and a Bachelor of Engineering from Victoria Jubilee Technical Institute, Mumbai. With her extensive educational background, she contributes significantly to global business education and student development.