Narrowing the gender gap and inculcating an inclusive environment at IIM Kashipur

While the gender gap and career development opportunities continue to provide barriers for women around the world, business schools are taking measures to ensure that women are more motivated than ever before and given the resources required to ensure they reach the top of their chosen profession. As a female student, I take immense pride to be part of an institution that has made constant efforts since its inception to enhance gender diversity and have left no stone unturned when it comes to what the MBA has to offer. 

Being a part of this prestigious institution, I have realised that the learnings as well as achievements are not restricted to be just classroom specific. All my female batchmates have shown active and equal participation on and off-campus, be it representing the institution in various B-schools & Corporate Competitions and emerging as the National Finalists and National Winners or running the campus along with their male counterparts through several clubs and committees while heading a few. 

It is the ripple effect of the combined efforts of all the women who joined IIM Kashipur and paved the path for equivalence, that the batch of 2020-22 witnessed a growth rate of 186 per cent in the number of female students joining the institution, compared to the previous batch. The current batch has a healthy representation of female students from 20 states and union territories across the country. To promote gender diversity, the institute has continued its initiative of sanctioning 15 supernumerary seats for women.

While we are on the subject of gender diversity, it is of utmost importance to realise and strike a healthy balance between the genders and promote growth, inclusivity and responsible management to ensure we give back to the society, future leaders who can inspire and set examples for the next generation of gender-inclusive leadership.

The vision set for students, is towards attempting for gender hypervisibility to be diminished and eventually disappear. At IIM Kashipur, we have come together in an attempt to develop leaders irrespective of the gender they belong to, who are not only mindful of the differences but also involve all categories of social distinction, so that they become leaders who form a workplace that is inclusive and equitable for all. 

About the Author:
Payal Singh, a Production Engineer by qualification is currently pursuing MBA (Analytics) from IIM Kashipur.  She is a part of  Team Insite- Admission Support Body of IIM Kashipur. You can connect with her on Linkedin.

Acquiring PPO in Flipkart by acing Flipkart Wired 4.0

Corporate competitions had always been a key area of focus in my MBA journey as they gave me a platform to take my classroom knowledge to the real world. Having worked in a fortune 500 organization I was always fascinated with the use of technology to elevate the human experience and hence E-Commerce was a domain of my interest. When Flipkart launched its flagship B-School competition Wired I pounced on the opportunity to apply my acquired management knowledge backed up with my technical skills to solve challenges faced by a giant like Flipkart. Since I was preparing for this competition for a long time (and well yes, the chance of scoring a PPO made it more lucrative), I was closely following the developments in the E-Commerce supply chain industry regularly. After understanding that how crucial E-Commerce had become to an average Indian in the times of COVID-induced lockdown, I wanted to dive deep into the sector and develop models on how E-Commerce can penetrate in a challenging country like ours.

The case competition required us to develop a model using which Flipkart could cater to the Tier 2 Indian customers with their day-to-day purchase needs. Understanding the importance of this problem statement in the context of Flipkart’s business situation and the national lockdown scenario, our team’s objective was to design an easy to implement supply chain model that could be easily replicated across the country within a time frame of 1 year. After clearing a series of rounds our team had the absolute delight to reach the national semifinals of this coveted competition. The very fact that this competition provided me with a platform to present my solutions and ideas to the top leadership of a dynamic organization like Flipkart tremendously added to my learning curve.

Having missed a chance to be a part of the National Finals, I was overwhelmed when I was called up for an interview with Flipkart in the form of a pre-placement interview (PPI). Well as Flipkart rightly claims “Ab har wish hogi poori” they certainly fulfilled my wish by providing me a chance to kick start my career with an organization like theirs. The interview process which had three rounds (a general aptitude test followed by 2 rounds of interviews) gave me enough opportunities to understand how I as an individual could contribute to Flipkart (technically and behaviorally). The interviewers were very keen on understanding what skill sets I bring to the table and what do I look for in terms of growth and opportunity. After those three rounds of virtual interactions, I finally got to experience that most sought-after day of MBA life when finally Flipkart offered me THE job!

The entire experience of participating in corporate competitions, learning bit by bit in each of them is a continuous journey. A journey that I believe is different for every individual. I cannot be thankful enough to be a part of an institute like IIM Kashipur where the entire atmosphere focuses on making you ready for real-world challenges. With competitions taking the center stage of academic focus it was my institute that played the pivotal role in grabbing my dream job opportunity.

About the author :
Pranav Bhardwaj is currently pursuing MBA from IIM Kashipur, with majors in Analytics and Marketing. He is a part of various student bodies like the The Consulting & Strategy Club, TEDx IIM Kashipur and Prep Cell. You can connect with him on LinkedIn.

Journey of winning ‘ICICI Bank Beat the Curve 2019’ – A step towards being 4th in D2C Competitive B schools 2021

From the beginning of the campus rounds, we focused on the aspect of bringing the youth’s (millennial) perspective to our case solution. For the competition, ICICI Bank Beat the Curve 2019, we chose to suggest an innovative product that will help attract people from 20 to 30 years of age towards the services of the Bank.  

The Challenge

We started by gathering a lot of primary data by getting responses from more than 1000 individuals of varied age groups and localities. The competition had three stages – a campus round, Stage 2 (semi-final), and a Final round. We spent close to 20 hours on the semi-final and the final rounds. The mentorship provided during the semi-final round was particularly very useful. There we understood what aspects of our solution we need to focus upon.

The Winning team – Team Ideates

There were 6 teams who made it to the Grand finale of the competition. They were from institutes like IIFT, FMS, JBIMS, IIM R, etc. During the presentations of the final round, we particularly felt that the team from JBIMS had put in a lot of research in building their solution. But we were confident about our solution as well as the presentation. Both Shubham and I were part of a winning team even in the first year of our MBA. The experience and learning during that competition certainly helped us here. We had confidence in each other. While preparing for the presentation, we helped each other out in finding faults critically and correcting each other. One of us was a late-night worker and the other was an early bird. Instead of quarreling over finding a common time to work, we took it as a plus point. We worked over this across time, building on each other’s work and just cross-checking before submitting the work when we were short on deadlines!

The moments that mattered

The panel of judges was from the leadership team at ICICI Bank. The competition had a unique and amazing judgment criterion. Along with the jury panel, the audience that comprised 50 senior-level executives of ICICI Bank, scored the different teams on 4 parameters. It was based on parameters like research depth, presentation quality, innovation of the solution, and the QnA round. One key learning in this competition was that the delivery of your presentation is as important as the hard work done while building the solution. Also, it is important that you look at your solution from the audience’s perspective. This helps you judge your own presentation before anyone else does! Well, there were two amazing moments for us. One was during the QnA, where we could justify a question put up by a senior executive sitting in the audience. Later, when we took our seats after the presentation, he came to us and praised our solution. That was really reassuring. The second was obviously during the declaration of results when our team, ‘Team Ideates from IIM Kashipur‘ was announced as the National Winners of ICICI Bank Beat The Curve 2019 and we were called on stage!

About the Author:
Chirag Dixit, MBA from Indian Institute of Management Kashipur and currently works with Bloomberg in their Financial Products team.
He has also been a part of the Placement Committee of the institute for both years and has worked in fostering relationship between the institute and industry on various levels. You can connect with him on LinkedIn.



Story of successfully hosting Uttishtha- The Annual Entrepreneurship Summit amidst the pandemic!

What we are going to read about will be sort of a story (Fairy Tale! Nothing short of that!) of ‘The Spring in the North’! – The Spring rejoiced by young entrepreneurs, startup owners, industry experts, faculties, college and school children from across the country. Yes, we are talking about Uttishtha – The Annual Entrepreneurship Summit of IIM Kashipur – The Spring of Entrepreneurship!

Here is the story by Team E-Cell about how they managed to pull off the event amidst difficulties posed by the pandemic!

Uttishtha is the much-awaited Entrepreneurship Summit which has an objective of revolutionizing how people view entrepreneurship and create an indelible impact in the entire startup ecosystem of the country and beyond!

The restrictions imposed on us due to COVID-19 and taking into consideration the safety of all the stakeholders of the event, we were forced to organize an event of such high magnitude on a virtual platform, which in turn meant restructuring of the entire Summit.

We, the entire E-Cell Team, decided to break the entire summit into small tasks and decided to go about the event in a phased manner. Subsequently we divided the entire summit into 3 phases, namely, the planning stage, the preparation stage and the summit!

So, we divided the team according to the preferences and expertise of the members and set off on our Voyage of “Making Entrepreneurship Bloom”!

The Planning Stage:

We all knew that Uttishtha’21 was going to be a completely new experience for all the stakeholders and we precisely knew that to create maximum value for everyone we had to restructure the entire summit upside down and planning or ‘Out of the Box’ sessions, we used to call them, were going to be the most important element of the entire summit!

The Importance of a Business Plan for MSMEs - AREAFENCING

In Uttishtha’21, as we were revamping almost everything, we decided to go beyond the mainstream in everything we were doing! While deciding the theme of the event, our thought process was to keep a theme that portrayed new beginnings, asked people to get rid of their winter blues (COVID blues!) and focus on embarking on the journey of 5R, namely, Rejuvenation, Regrowth, Resurrection, Renewal and Regrowth! So, with a decision to keep the whole Summit light and bright, we decided to keep the Theme – “Spring”, or the “Spring of Entrepreneurship”, more holistically!

We believe, the first major challenge that came towards our way in the planning stage was in the form of event crafting and flow mapping! We knew, that events of last year needed a major revamp, if we were to create the Summit engaging and create value for the people involved! Last year Uttishtha, had events like Startup Exhibitions, Entrepreneurship Bootcamp and Expo, which could not be conducted online given the nature of the events. So, we needed to come up with events which could fill the space of these events and so we started brainstorming on the needs and wants of all the stakeholders and subsequently came up with new events such as Not Clubhouse – focused panel discussion sessions, firechat conversation – a dialogue between experts from completely different areas, co-founder dating – a virtual internship fair for students across the country, among others! The molding of events according to the theme of the summit and requirements of the stakeholder involved, was a fun-filled experience!

We believe, ‘Uttishtha’ is an epitome of collaborative effort and it sees contribution and cooperation from each and every member of the IIM Kashipur community. After the planning of events and identifying the work areas, it was very important for us to gather support from the community and form an enthusiastic team comprising people who were motivated enough to work on the event diligently. Given the lack of physical interaction with the people involved, in a virtual setting, it was a bit difficult to find the real potential of the applicants. But after due process, we were lucky enough to have found a team, where members were on their toes to make the best out of the opportunity provided. Given the virtual nature of the event, the division of the functional teams had to be revamped where traditional functional teams such as arrangement teams, People management team and promotions team among others had to be dropped off the chart and made way for new teams such as virtual platform team, Audience engagement team and social media team among others.

The Preparation Stage:

Uttishtha’21 being virtual posed a lot of challenges in the execution of ideas, but along with the challenges involved, it also provided us with a lot of opportunities with respect to the extended reach of the event.

Challenges |

The main challenge that the team had to endure while executing the plans was the possibility of miscommunication at times due to lack of physical interaction leading to redundancy of work. Also, too much follow up on the tasks slowed down the process of execution of plans. Although these were challenges which were natural to come in a virtual setting, the dedicated and mindful work of different functional teams ensured smooth operations throughout.

The teams working on onboarding industry experts, dignitaries, speakers, startup founders, school administrators and students had a large pool of people to target given that there was no need to look after travel and lodging arrangements of the guests and with the click of a button experts could join the sessions. This not only allowed us to reach out to people beyond boundaries, but also opened wide range of opportunities for the teams to reach out to people of high stature. One approach that stand out during the whole process was the use of quirky tweet threads on twitter to reach out to people. The choice of this unconventional way led to us having onboarded a lot of good speakers and industry experts.

One of the tasks, that took substantial amount of our time was choosing an ideal virtual platform for the Summit. It proved to be an exhaustive process, given we had certain criteria such as neat user interface (UI), easy accessibility and usability, and comprehensiveness with respect to functions among others in our mind.  We tried out nearly 12 virtual event platforms before narrowing down on “Airmeet” for conducting the Summit, which we believe served our purpose well.

The digital media team had a humongous task in hand, given they were responsible for creating all the buzz around the event and getting the word across boundaries. They came up with innovative ideas to promote the event to the best of their abilities. With the support from Media and Public Relations Committee (MPRC), the team was able to forge meaningful partnerships with various media partners such as Amar Ujala, Campus Beat among others which helped the team in multi-channel promotions of the event. The digital marketing team came up with numerous creatives and took advantage of all social media opportunities (paid as well as unpaid) to promote the Summit.

The Summit (5th March – 7th March):

Team Uttishtha Meet! Date (4 March, 2021), Time: 10:00 PM! Each and every member from the entire team was there. We all had our cameras switched on! We all were from different functional teams, we all had completely different tasks assigned, but one thing common in all of us was the satisfaction we had with the level of preparedness for the summit that was going to commence next day morning. We all were pumped up and were fully motivated to make the summit a memorable one for everyone and enjoy the three-day summit to the best of our abilities.

Finally, the Spring of Entrepreneurship was here! The first day started off as a warm breeze with esteemed speakers showering their wisdom on the attendees. The first day saw the presence of dignitaries like Mr. Arun Pandey (Chairman and MD, Rhiti Sports), Subhadeep Sanyal (managing partner, Omnivore) among others. We expected that getting the speakers and attendees accustomed to a fairly new platform like ‘Airmeet’ and ensuring the smooth internet connectivity throughout the sessions were something which might play spoilsport during the events, but we are proud of our Techno-savvy team which kept technical issues at bay throughout the Summit.  

The Second and third day were going to be crucial days of the event given we had events lined up in those two days which overlapped too, the risk we had to take because of the limited time we had and plethora of events planned out! We had Clear Harvey workshop for school students, Udaan – a national level B-Plan competition, speaker sessions, panel discussions with school administrators planned out, which led to many of them overlapping. But unconsciously, the bond in the entire team and the culture passed on by our seniors helped us sail through roadblocks smoothly and conduct the events in a synchronous manner. It was great to see people taking ownership for their responsibilities and coming forward to take additional responsibilities! Last minute cancellations of few of the experts was something we always had in our mind, and we are happy that we had backups and plans to deal with those situations!

Overall, we can say that Uttishtha’21 was a roller coaster ride for each and every member of the team. Each turn had some challenge for us and we are proud and happy that we had our experienced seniors (our partners, supporters and mentors), who were not only there to show us the path but were there to handhold us through the trouble times. The support from the entire IIM Kashipur community helped us in making the event a national success!

Uttishtha’21 is indeed an epitome of collaborative effort!

10 things that make IIM Kashipur special!

The moment we hear IIM Kashipur we relish the scenic beauty of the majestic Himalayas lining up this exalted building of bricks. IIM in the North(as it’s fondly called) is bestowed not only with the stunning beauty of nature but also ensures wholesome experience to academic rigor.  So, we have come up with 10 best highlights which makes IIM Kashipur the nostalgic addition to students’ memory lane.

MBA Analytics:

This program is specially devised to provide a comprehensive learning platform for the students to make them industry prepared, to suffice the increasing demand for complex data analysis, and thereby helping organizations make better decisions. This aims to make students understand the necessary principles of different forms of analytics to facilitate decision-making in practical business settings. Moreover, this program enables students to acquire and use advanced analytical as well as managerial skills to evaluate uncertain and dynamic business environments and to make effective decisions.

Gender Diversity:

IIM Kashipur has achieved more than a 3X increase in female candidates in the AY 2020 -21 compared to the previous year. Moreover, IIM Kashipur encourages the enrollment of female candidates through points assigned in the diversity metric as a part of its academic policy and it also continued with its initiative of sanctioning 15 supernumerary seats for female students.

Experiential Learning:

The institute comprises of 41 faculties from various domains of specialization with rich experience and showcasing higher research potential. Moreover, IIM Kashipur believes in imparting application-based knowledge to the student fraternity, and as a step to achieve the same, the institute has about  34 visiting faculties from other IIMs and top B schools. The curriculum of IIM Kashipur is structured in a way to instill practical knowledge to the student community through projects and assignments. In addition to this, regular classes are shaped with interactive discussion-based teaching and learning activities through simulations to deliver the inexplicable things in a more fathomable way.

Competitions:

As we know MBA is not a degree that can be acquired through books, IIM Kashipur promotes the participation of students in various corporate and B school competitions. This academic year, students have bagged 100+ achievements to the institute in competitions organised by fortune 500 companies like Xiaomi, One plus and ET, Tata group, Google, Flipkart, L’Oreal, Reliance, Edelweiss Tokio, etc., Students have also bagged prizes from IIMs, IITs and top B schools.

F.I.E.D:

Foundation for Innovation & Entrepreneurship Development (FIED) is the incubation center of  Indian Institute of Management Kashipur, which is an initiative to cultivate and improve India’s entrepreneurship ecosystem. With the assistance of the Ministry of Agriculture, the Department of Science and Technology, the Government of Uttarakhand, and other supporting partners, FIED is set to incubate India’s most promising start-ups in the areas of tourism and hospitality, agriculture, art and craft, and education. FIED concentrates on the major focus areas which include art and craft, agriculture, technology, tourism, Ayurveda, and education. These areas focus on preserving our rich heritage, spreading the knowledge about science and technology, working towards the betterment of agriculture, enhancing the knowledge level of inquisitive minds, and fostering the inner wanderlust within people. Moreover, FIED has successfully incubated 150+ ventures, has engaged 500+ entrepreneurs, raised more than 50 crore rupees of funding, and has established a network of 100+ investors setting a stage for the budding entrepreneurs to learn and establish their dreams.

𝐄𝐱𝐜𝐡𝐚𝐧𝐠𝐞 𝐏𝐫𝐨𝐠𝐫𝐚𝐦 𝐚𝐭 𝐈𝐈𝐌 𝐊𝐚𝐬𝐡𝐢𝐩𝐮𝐫:

𝗦𝘁𝘂𝗱𝗲𝗻𝘁 𝗘𝘅𝗰𝗵𝗮𝗻𝗴𝗲 𝗣𝗿𝗼𝗴𝗿𝗮𝗺:

IIM Kashipur has, over the years, developed strong ties with multiple universities and institutes from all around the world. IIM Kashipur students have the chance to visit top MBA institutes in France, Denmark, Greece, Israel, South Korea, Taiwan, UK, Thailand, and many more. In the year 2019-20, 11 students from IIM Kashipur visited 5 different institutes in different countries as part of the Student Exchange Program which lasted for about 3 months.

𝗦𝗵𝗼𝗿𝘁-𝗧𝗲𝗿𝗺 𝗘𝘅𝗰𝗵𝗮𝗻𝗴𝗲 𝗣𝗿𝗼𝗴𝗿𝗮𝗺 (𝗦𝗧𝗘𝗣):

IIM Kashipur also offered its students the opportunity to visit some of these institutes as part of the Short-Term Exchange Program (STEP) which lasted for around 15 days in the academic year 2019-20. A total of 24 students took part in the STEP Program to visit ALBA Graduate Business School, Greece.

The program included 2 weeks of workshops, lectures, and immersion programs wherein the students get an opportunity to explore in and out of Europe giving them significant geographic and cultural exposure.


𝗦𝘁𝘂𝗱𝗲𝗻𝘁 𝗕𝗼𝗱𝗶𝗲𝘀 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗔𝗰𝘁𝗶𝘃𝗶𝘁𝗶𝗲𝘀 𝗮𝘁 𝗜𝗜𝗠 𝗞𝗮𝘀𝗵𝗶𝗽𝘂𝗿

IIM Kashipur is a completely student-driven campus right from placements to day to day functioning of the campus. Being a part of the student bodies and event-specific teams, students mold themselves in various spheres of qualities which include time management, team building and management, situation handling, and maintaining cordial relations with the administration.

𝗡𝗲𝘁𝘄𝗼𝗿𝗸𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗼𝗳 𝗜𝗜𝗠 𝗞𝗮𝘀𝗵𝗶𝗽𝘂𝗿:

𝗜𝗻𝗱𝘂𝘀𝘁𝗿𝘆 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗻𝗲𝗰𝘁

This year IIM Kashipur conducted guest lectures in various domains like Finance, Marketing, Operations, and HR by inviting industry leaders from organizations like Bain Capital, Henkel Adhesives Technology, Myntra, Jabong, MRF, Karvy Group, Capgemini to name a few. The focus is also on providing live projects to the students of IIM Kashipur that gives them hands-on experience to get the required industry sensitization before actually going out in the corporate world. This year the college has floated numerous projects for students from leading companies like Swiggy, PUMA, Crisil, Dish TV, Ashok Leyland, Reliance Industries, Scale Labs, Faber Infinite to name a few.

𝗔𝗹𝘂𝗺𝗻𝗶 𝗖𝗼𝗻𝗻𝗲𝗰𝘁:

Creating an engaged, supportive alumni network is crucial to an institution’s success. With mushrooming educational institutions around the world, one way for an institute to stand out from the domestic and international competition is by promoting its brand. And an institute’s alumni are its best bet. They act as flag bearers of the institute in the outside world and ensure the current batches are made aware of ongoing trends. IIM Kashipur believes in continuous engagement with its strong alumni network via biannual city meets, annual reunion at the institute, regular webinars, and guest lectures.

𝗜𝗻𝗳𝗿𝗮𝘀𝘁𝗿𝘂𝗰𝘁𝘂𝗿𝗲 𝗳𝗮𝗰𝗶𝗹𝗶𝘁𝗶𝗲𝘀 𝗮𝘁 𝗜𝗜𝗠 𝗞𝗮𝘀𝗵𝗶𝗽𝘂𝗿:

  • The new campus of IIM Kashipur is spread over an area of 200 acres, visually very striking and functionally very effective. The campus is equipped with modern technologies in classrooms to provide the best management education.
  • Gymnasium, Library, Amphitheatre, and Mini-Amphitheatre are the other facilities present on campus to ensure the holistic development of students.
  • Sports facilities include TT Table, Lawn Tennis Court, Basketball Court, Badminton court, Futsal Court, Volleyball Court, Frisbee ground, and Cricket Ground.

IIM Kashipur hosts a variety of events across the year to foster all-round development and extend the values of our institute. Coalescence is our annual corporate summit, Uttishtha is an annual entrepreneurial event, TEDx IIM Kashipur, Agnitraya, is our annual flagship cultural, sports and management festival, Convocation, and many others.

In short, ‘Life is amazing, here, at IIM Kashipur.’

By

Deshmaa RT and Sakshi Poddar

MBA (Analytics) 2020–22

Indian Institute of Management Kashipur

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