Tag Archive: kirloskar istitute of advanced management studies


Avisek Sarkar believes in following his instincts and mak3ing smart decisions at the right time. That’s why the engineering graduate who was interested in technology decided to switch to management. He says that he wanted to give his career the best platform, which is why he opted for the PGDM with KIAMS. He now stresses that he has managed to combine his technical abilities from engineering studies with analytical, logical thinking from his management program. Perhaps that is what impressed his new employer; Oracle Financial Services Software.

The excitement of being placed with a global powerhouse like Oracle is written large over Avisek’s face. He also realizes that his corporate journey has only begun and he will have to prove his mettle. “The role I have been offered is in financial analytical application development. As a member of the software engineering division, I will have to do detailed design based on high level design specifications. I will also have to assist in system planning, scheduling and implementation, testing bugs, building enhancements etc. I feel prepared for these challenges thanks to my learning at KIAMS,” he says.

Bagging campus placement with a corporate biggie like Oracle is no mean feat. There is a great deal of preparation that goes into making one’s mark in the interview. Avisek sheds light on the process as he says, “One thing that went in my favour was the fact that I had domain knowledge. I also believe you need to be calm and composed during the interview to be able to make the best impression.KIAMS not only helped me build a solid foundation of knowledge but through different initiatives like IRP sessions ensured that I had overcome my fear of public speaking. It reflected in the interview and helped me a lot.”

Avisek also asserts that his learning at the B School was intense with long hours on a daily basis. But his faculty members made things easier by keeping things relatable. His SIP with Novotel Kolkata also enabled him to get valuable practical exposure that he counts on as he prepares for his corporate sojourn. “My time with KIAMS has been a memorable journey altogether. Even the tight class schedules, late night group studies, presentations were fun and lively for me. I am going to miss the hostel life, time spent on the campus and just hanging out with my friends whenever I want,” he says emotionally.

His advice for juniors who might be interested in a job profile like his – “It’s a Financial Analyst profile and if that’s something you are interested in as well then you need to have a strong base in finance and economics. Practical exposure besides academics is also important. But above all be confident and stay true to yourself. You will achieve your goals if you believe in yourself and put in the efforts.” That’s something he himself has done, and is now reaping the benefits for it.

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After karen-saldanha-250-225x300completing her graduation in Oman, where her parents both work as corporate professionals, Karen Saldanha decided to come to India to pursue higher education. She was keen to pursue a career in management and believes that KIAMS has helped her in a big way, borne out by her placement with HDFC Bank.

Karen admits that it took her a while to get over the initial shock of being chosen as a Relationship Manager by HDFC Bank because there were several other right candidates for the job. She also thought her interview wasn’t going too well but managed to turn things around for herself. “Initially it was going all wrong and I think I gave some wrong answers. At one point they even gave me a chance to learn the correct answer for one of the questions. I came back having prepared for more than that, which might have impressed them,” she says with a smile.

She also talks about the efforts taken by her institute to prepare her for the placement process. According to Karen the courses in GD, interviews and business communications groomed students and instilled confidence in them. “Besides that the modules where we were taught what the industry expects of us were very helpful. They had included courses on Customer Insight, Digital Marketing, Strategic Management, International Business, Brand Management, Consumer Behaviour etc and they helped us tremendously,” she adds.

Karen also points out that though she had got placed in her very first attempt she chose to not accept the offer as she wanted to make a bright start to her corporate career. She expects it to happen with a big name like HDFC where her job responsibilities will include, “Meeting clients and addressing their problems, ensuring cross selling of banking products and overall maintaining good relationships with them. I did my internship with Reliance Retail, Chennai and believe that experience will come handy in my job,” she asserts.

While Karen is on cloud nine at the moment, she also feels a hint of sadness knowing that she won’t be spending time on campus with friends. She states that one major advantage of a residential PGDM program is that you make friends for life. Ask her if she has any advice for juniors and she says, “Take efforts to match industry’s needs of skills and knowledge, pay attention to classes and do your assignments diligently. The secret to my good grades is 100% attendance. You might also want to create a LinkedIn profile because networking is the key.” Speaking like a true professional, she already is.

2Ask for Prof. Abhishek Narasimha on the KIAMS campus at Harihar and you are sure to be greeted with a smile and directions to the ‘YouTube Prof’. You look inquiringly at the student, and all you get is a matter-of-fact:“You’ll know when you meet him.”

An Engineer with a PGD in Signal Processing and Communication Technology from Coventry University, UK, Prof. Abhishek Narsimha prima facie teaches nothing remotely close to any of his Engineering subjects. That could be because of his other education – an MA in Political Science. Well, that too is not something he teaches at KIAMS. Prof. Narsimha has been, for quite some time now, been teaching HR purely out of his passion for Organizational Behavior, Cross-Cultural Management, Business Ethics & CSR. A compulsive researcher, Prof. Narasimha has many papers and articles to his credit, which he has presented at a number of prestigious seminars and for which he has gained recognition. So where’s the connection in his academic background?

“A very strong connection, actually,”he says with a smile, answering a question he must’ve been asked a thousand times. “Engineering helped in shaping my analytical and rational thinking, while Arts have helped me in developing my softer side. I try to combine both, to bring out a wide range of perspectives. For instance, while discussing supply chain issues in Business Ethics, it is important to bring in issues like the Savar Building Collapse in Bangladesh, where workers were exploited and were employed under norms violating the charter of ILO. Moreover, promotion of democratic values like freedom of expression, just and humane conditions of work, as well as the promotion of human rights, should be the main goal of every business. It’s what the long term sustainability of any organization depends upon.”

He rattles of a number of crises that have arisen due to globalization, like the mining of Coltan (an important mineral in laptops and mobile phones) during the Congo Civil War (1997-2003), and moves fluently into the importance of cross-cultural understanding.

“Owing to globalisation, the erosion of territorial significance has been an important phenomenon in social, political and economic activities. It has led to mass consumerism and similar consumer lifestyles around the world. But at the same time, it has revealed inherent diversity and has led to an expression for stronger cultural values in different parts of the world, which are rooted in traditions. Like the promotion of the Coca leaf in Bolivia, the failure of Walmart in Germany and rise of Pan-Islamism in Egypt. Therefore, we can see a dialectic interaction of globalization with respect to different cultures. Cross-cultural understanding today has significant implications in HR policies, Marketing, as well as in identifying a right business strategy to target a particular country.”

He then goes into the nuances of why McDonalds serves McAloo Tikki, or PizzaHut sells Birizza (Biryani + Pizza) in India.

“Every choice”he concludes, “is finally a combination of the head and heart.”

And what’s with this tag of “YouTube Prof?”

“Ah!”he exclaims breaking into a smile. “I use videos from YouTube to bring in the concept. We keep the delivery simple and clear in the classroom. We do a lot of group assignments to get students to apply these concepts to real life scenarios. Of course there’s reading material, but I include a lot of discussions and debates around key issues based on the material.”

Prof. Narsimha comes across as an idealist, which is not so surprising considering that he is still young. He concedes that being from the same generation helps him connect with his class better. His work with Shiksha Aadhar, a community initiative for the education of underprivileged children in and around Electronic City in Bengaluru, has been well acknowledged; though he prefers keeping a low-profile when you broach the subject.

“I’ve always been interested in gaining knowledge and sharing it with people. It’s why I took up teaching. I believe it is necessary for young people to get into teaching to contribute towards building a better future with holistic individuals. If all young people take up corporate jobs or get into startups, who will take up the baton of imparting learning in society?”

Prof. Abhishek Narsimha is currently researching the efforts of Dharavi Market, a social enterprise startup, working to bring the craftsmen of Dharavi (one of Asia’s largest slums in Mumbai) to the World Wide Web.

Dharavi Market attempts to break the myths about slums being places of poverty and misery, and helps realize the spirit of entrepreneurship among slum dwellers. They have a website where they display the products of the craftsmen, and they have an app they can use to upload their products directly on the website of the company. There are a wide range of products from shoes, leather jackets, apparels to pottery products all made by the people of Dharavi.”

Given that most of the research in business management focusses on large corporates and new age startups, this seems like quite a revelation. Prof. Narsimha, for one, is extremely excited about this social experiment.

“After all, it’s not every day that you come across an opportunity to go beyond the regular stuff, and explore entrepreneurship at the bottom of the pyramid.”

294298_248994195152998_100001272584331_780954_709961831_nFor the majority in any B-school, the entire package boils down to just one word – Placements. It is no mystery of nature that ‘On-campus Placements’ is the most challenging and nerve-wracking part of being in a B-school. Imagine, therefore, being placed in August, even before the beginning of the Placement season in November? Imagine being handed over the Offer Letter, without even beginning to feel the anxiety of placements? Imagine 8 months of blissful coexistence in the lap of nature at the sprawling KIAMS campus, instead of 8 months of fretting and agonizing over the search of an adequate job?

If you can imagine all of this, you can imagine being Sakshi Vatsa.

Plainly put, Sakshi Vatsa is ‘first among equals’ for the 14th batch at KIAMS. While her colleagues may, in the times to come, claim great feats in the corporate world, this achievement will find a unique place in the history of her batch and KIAMS.

“Not just the Placements, my entire academic experience in KIAMS has been pretty good,” remarks the Finance and Marketing student of KIAMS. “In KIAMS, the assignments that are given to us are not just theoretical in nature, but involvethe application of these concepts in a practical environment. This helped me in a big way during my interviews for Odessa Technologies. Most of the questions in my interview were conceptual, concerning little things that could easily have been forgotten or ignored had we not learnt their practical application.”

Sakshi had been placed with Odessa Technologies – a US origin multinational – as a Functional Analyst with a pay package of Rs. 5 lakh per annum. The last couple of months have helped her gather all the necessary knowhow on her job profile.

“Odessa is into customised business solutions for Finance companies. Functional Analysts deal mainly with clients and their business processes. I am sure the training period should suffice. The biggest advantage for me is that I am pretty well versed with the concepts required. I’m counting on my friends in Bangalore to help me settle down fast.”

Born and raised in Patna, Sakshi was clear that she would be pursuing MBA for her Masters, the very day she took up B.Com. This helped her carry out an exhaustive study of major B-schools in India.

“I first heard of KIAMS from a friend of mine who was graduating with me. Her sister had passed out from KIAMS and spoke very highly of it. When I asked my mentor about KIAMS, he gave me a big thumbs up without batting an eyelid.”

For Sakshi, 2 years at KIAMS is pretty much a roller coaster ride, with two distinct phases – Pre SIP phase and Post SIP phase.

“The Pre-SIP phase – roughly the first year – is absolutely fun-filled; with lots of time with friends, discussions, fests, events, submission of assignments, exams.Post-SIP, I could make out the seriousness in every single batch-mate of mine at KIAMS. It was almost like at the snap of a finger, everything had changed.People had become more focused on their careers, as the SIP made them realise the need of alignment. The Placements pressure too starts building up.”

Sakshi has a pretty simple strategy with regards to her shortly ensuing corporate career – work hard, take responsibilities, adapt fast, be ready to switch roles, learn quickly on the job, and think on your feet. She is positive that if she sticks to these basics she’ll very quickly get where she wants to. With a strong inclination towards taxation, Sakshi has set a target profile of a taxation analyst 5 years down the line.

 

“All in good time,” concludes Sakshi with a disarming smile. “As of now, I’d like to bask in the joys of friendship in my last few days at KIAMS.”

                                                                                                                                Sakshi Vatsa,

                                                                                                                                Batch 14, KIAMS

                                                                                                                                Placed with Odessa Technologies