February 12, 13 and 14 are dates many KIAMS residents and businesses look forward to. For these are the dates when KIAMS Pragati is scheduled to happen. This large scale event is completely organized by the KIAMS Junior Year students.
Huge crowds, to the tune of 50,000 footfalls, during 2011 attended Pragati. They were looking for products and deals in a single location at a fair price. These crowds have a confidence in Pragati that has been built over the ten years that it has been organized. It is an event that helps the KIAMS Management students to hone their organizational and event management skills.
“I really look forward to the kind of stalls that would be brought for display. There are several sponsors and having them is a big boost. Pragati has cultural performances for 3 days. I want to see what kind of culturals would be there this year,” says Aadil Ahmed, who has worked on 2011’s Pragati first hand.
One of the biggest events of its kind to take place Pragati’s platform offers rural marketers from large, medium and small industries an opportunity to conduct their market research while giving the consumers an opportunity to witness developments that could improve the quality of their lives.
“Pragati for me is the most important activity in the campus. It teaches you beyond what is being taught in the classes. It gave me more confidence and has added a lot to my knowledge. With Pragati, I was able to become part of an effort that is the pride of my batch. I put my heart and soul in it, along with my batch mates and the result was amazing. On the first day of my Pragati, 20th February, 2011, When I went to the Gandhi Maidan and saw the whole Pragati setup there, it became one of my proudest moments. The whole experience was something that I could never forget in my life,” says Ahmed.
Six teams are equally responsible for organizing Pragati. They include:
- The Prospecting Team, whose job it is to sell Pragati stalls to local businesses or companies. They are in charge of planning and coordinating the sale and allocation of stalls, following up, maintaining a database, and getting new leads.
- The Promotions Team is responsible for generating Pragati visibility using visual communications and design to create posters, placards, TV and radio ads, fliers, and any other promotional activity they can think of. Their job can really bring in those rural footfalls.
- The Operations Team designs the layout of KIAMS Pragati. They coordinate with the Prospecting Team to ensure spaces are properly allocated in terms of size, location and numbers. They also work on permissions from the various government departments like police, fire, etc and organize electricity, water and maintenance. Operations works on fund requirements for all their activities including infrastructure like tents and furniture.
- The Cultural Team is in charge of entertainment through the three days of KIAMS Pragati. No fair is complete without it. In fact, people from the surrounding rural areas look forward to the entertainment just as much as they look forward to great deals. Performances can be from local schools and artistes. Getting sponsorships for entertainment are also the Cultural Team’s responsibility.
- The Finance Team is small but strong with the numbers on their fingertips. They need to be thorough and organized as every rupee earned or spent has to be accounted for. It is their job to reimburse expenses and release funds for expenses.
- The Calling Team calls people and companies that are physically too far for their Prospects Team to visit. They send out brochures and emails with relevant details of Pragati.
“Pragati is not just any other activity or assignment that we take up in the course. It puts you out there, in the field and makes you work to achieve success: how one would approach a prospect, following up on leads, converting leads, etc. These things cannot be taught in a classroom and have to be done to be learnt. You implement what you have learned in the class, make mistakes and improve yourself,” Aadil says.
Right now, all the teams are finalizing statuses. They are coordinating, discussing and making lists of what needs to be done in the next week. Each of them has a single agenda: KIAMS Pragati 2012 has to be the best ever.