Why Women Are the X-Factor in the New Working Environment

New ways of working and leading are desired in today’s business environment.  In order to succeed in that system, organizations will need two fundamental sets of skills. The first being digital skills for which many organizations are actively hiring software developers, data scientists and analysts, experienced designers, and people with critical digital skills. The second skill set, however—is just as important: human-centred skills in areas such as communication, collaboration, motivation, emotional intelligence, creativity, and imagination.

The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, its economic disruption and uncertainty, has only underscored the need for these skills. Over the next decade, these leadership skills will become must-haves as traditional, top-down approaches decline in the face of fast, highly collaborative, agile organizations. Nonetheless, today’s leaders will have to navigate uncertainty and comprehend the needs and challenges of various stakeholders in the ever-changing scenarios. Leaders must be empathetic and able to encourage others, inspire teams, develop relationships, and learn with humility, in a business world with increasingly differentiated, multi-functional teams that operate independently.

A NEW LEADERSHIP MODEL

While algorithms can perform standardised processes and make straightforward decisions much faster, cheaper, and more accurately than humans, other skills – which only humans can leverage, such as empathy, imagination, and judgment—are essential for complex problem-solving.

That’s why, in today’s agile organisations, leaders don’t just issue orders based on their own expertise or experience instead, they identify a problem and then support autonomous teams that do the actual work of solving that problem. Such leadership necessitates a level of vulnerability, such as someone who encourages and supports people who have better knowledge about a given subject than their superiors and are more likely to find a solution. 

Then, the question arises – How can women leaders contribute to this change? Something that many people already know – women tend to be highly empathetic, with strong emotional intelligence, active listeners who solicit ideas, collaborate, share credit, and change course when necessary. It has also been observed that when there are more women on a team, the collective intelligence of the groups tend to increase. Moreover, gender-balanced teams are how diverse leadership teams boost innovation than their competitors, and perform better. While empathy and relationship-building skills appear to be uncommon among leadership candidates, most organisations will find them in their own untapped pools of women employees and managers.

GROWING EVIDENCE OF WOMEN’S ABILITY TO LEAD IN THE NEW WAYS

Empirical evidence suggests that many of the essential leadership qualities are more likely to be displayed by women.  For example, a recent study published in Harvard Business Review found that women in leadership roles were ranked higher than men in a variety of key competencies, such as encouraging and motivating others, building partnerships, cooperation, and teamwork.

When looking at more granular skills, researchers from a German university discovered that women, in general, can accurately decipher emotions from people’s faces. Another research discovered that women are better at reading body language than men. According to a third study, men detect subtle signs of emotion like depression just around 40% of the time, while women can notice them 90% of the time. Furthermore, a study published in the journal Science found that having more women on a team improved the collective knowledge of the groups. Rather than attempting to dominate a conversation or a task, women are more likely to consider others, elicit feedback, listen actively, and take turns contributing. As a result, women-centric organizations have become more collaborative and better able to tap into the potential.

For organizations that understand the need to work and lead in new ways, and the imperative of diversity, the message is clear: workplaces need to identify people with these skills and put them in leadership roles. That was true even before COVID-19, but the pandemic has emphasised the relevance of empathetic, collaborative leadership. Companies that wish to reap the benefits of these leadership skills must increase their efforts to recruit, retain, and encourage women.

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 at the prestigious institution. You can connect with her on Linkedin.

Rising Steel Prices: Can Fintech save MSMEs in distress?

The Alumni Relations Committee of IIM Kashipur has served as a bridge to beget valuable insights about the role of Fintech in MSME from our erudite alumnus. This article covers the questions surrounding the issue of rising steel prices and how Fintech can save the MSMEs in distress.

A sharp rise in raw material prices, (especially steel) over the last few months has impacted the recovery of manufacturing, construction, and small and medium industries from the COVID-19 pandemic.  The MSME industry needs to provide steel at reasonable prices so that export competitiveness of value-added products is maintained

A sharp rise in raw material prices, (especially steel) over the last few months has impacted the recovery of manufacturing, construction, and small and medium industries from the COVID-19 pandemic.  The MSME industry needs to provide steel at reasonable prices so that export competitiveness of value-added products is maintained.

Fintech lending platforms have the ability to address the credit gap for small businesses. Most digital lending platforms which used to rely only on equity and debt capital are now also looking at post loan origination sources of capital such as securitization and direct assignment transactions to improve liquidity. The fintech, banks, and NBFCs will play a huge role in powering small businesses in the post-pandemic new world and will help in reviving the economies. These new and innovative lending models will not only strike a right balance between financial stability and growth but also encourage a focus on the credit needs of small businesses in the country and NBFCs and fintechs are considered as better equipped to support this endeavour.

To understand the reasons behind the bullish prices, we can look at some of the factors affecting the price of steel:

Supply And Demand-

As with any commodity, supply and demand is a huge factor that determines steel prices. The higher the demand and the lower the supply, the higher the price. As lockdowns were gradually eased and construction work resumed, steel prices started rising with the rise in demand.

Moreover, the prices of steel are determined not just by current supply and demand, but by forecasted supply and demand. The more information available, the better this can be predicted, and the less volatile prices will be. We must also strive to be aware of inventory in the supply chain in every link from the steel mills to the end-user.

Industry Trends-

Price is also influenced by the demand of the various industries steel is used for. If the auto industry is strong, for example, steel demand may be higher; the same goes for construction, packaging, and other businesses that rely heavily upon steel.

Costs of Materials-

Scrap metal and iron ore are two of the main materials used to create steel. If there is a limited amount of these resources available, demand exceeds supply, and the cost of materials will jump up.

Iron ore fetching a year-end price of $175 a tonne on the Dalian Commodity Exchange (DCE), is now the world’s best performing major commodity for the second year in a row. Indian Steel Association (ISA) calls for Government Intervention and demands a six-month ban on iron-ore exports, restriction of e-auction sale to steel- and pellet-makers. The Government suspects that the steel-makers might be indulging in the manipulation of production to lift prices, forming a cartel in the cement and steel industry. However, on the contrary, in the steel industry where two major players, namely, SAIL and Vizag Steel are government-owned are also a part of the same trend.

Costs of Shipping-

By the same token, materials used to create steel and finished goods can be costly to ship, a factor that may help determine the price.

Time of Year-

Time of year has its effect on many industries, and those that use steel are no different. Holidays, weather, and seasonal highs and lows affect the output of new products, either raising or lowering demand. Seasonality can impact shipping patterns and transit modes.

All these events have left the MSMEs in jeopardy. Nothing was happening for several months because of the pandemic. The projects were shut down or were on hold. The rise in steel prices is eating into their narrow margins making it more and more difficult for them to sustain. A big issue of MSME credit gap can be solved by fintech lending platforms if they are able to access reliable digital data sets that can assist with credit risk analysis and cash flow-based lending, the regulatory framework supports a low-cost KYC and customer onboarding process and if these platforms themselves are able to tap into a wider set of channels for their own sources of capital.

About the Author:

Mr. Shahrukh Khan, an Alumnus of IIM Kashipur who has completed his PGP in the year 2019 is currently handling the Product & Process – OfCommerce at OfBusiness. While at the campus, he has been a Class Representative and Joint Secretary of Wellness Coordinators. He has also represented IIM Kashipur in multiple TT Tournaments.

Management from a Homemaker’s Lens

The word Management as defined in the dictionary means the process of dealing and coordinating with people. Management is a never-ending loop that begins when one gets up in the morning and ends when one sets the alarm for the next day and goes to sleep.

 Management is always conceptualized as a fancy degree from a Business school and jargons like Presentations, Entrepreneurship, SWOT, ROI, etc. Management is inevitably present and significant in all these fields, but what we often forget is that management is applicable in all walks of life. It covers all facets of our lives. We ignore this fact because we have been so used to doing these roles that we have forgotten about the management nature. Even a trip to Goa with friends or relatives requires proper planning so to effectively manage one’s schedule for an enriching experience.

 If we deep dive into our daily life schedule, I see my mother implementing all my MBA lessons in some way and the best part is though those decisions or acts of her do not bring any life-changing decisions but are pivotal for the smooth functioning of the house.

 The duties of a homemaker are frequently looked down upon, but as we look closely, we can see that becoming a homemaker demands immense management skills. One of the most difficult examples of management is managing an entire family, taking care of everyone’s special needs, settling petty conflicts among children, maintaining the bonds intact, ensuring food is prepared on time. All this might sound so simple when we compare it to the life of an MBA graduate but it is equally challenging and complex.

 If we draw an analogy between the life of a manager and a homemaker, it is quite indistinguishable. The only difference is the nature of the work they both execute. Just like in an organization, A manager is the one responsible for streamlining the tasks, planning things ahead of time so that the needs of the clients are fulfilled on time, and addressing the grievances of its employees. In the same fashion, Homemakers must plan for the whole family, predict future challenges, multitask and make the most use of their resources, and be armed with plans for any last-minute hiccups.

 Let us take a few examples where we see homemakers implementing various concepts of MBA.

 Before buying any vegetable, she does a SWOT analysis for it and checks for if it is the best available product in the market.

She keeps a close record of all house expenses and makes sure every expense is recorded and gets tallied with the money she has in hand. In some or the other way, she exhibits great accounting skills.

She doesn’t have a degree but yes she is a perfect manager and a successful leader.

About the Author
Sakshi Poddar a Computer Science Engineer by qualification is now pursuing MBA(Analytics from IIM Kashipur. She is a part of various student bodies like the Media and Public Relations Committee and Admission Support Body. She is an IT professional with 2 years of experience in Hewlett Packard Enterprise. She loves traveling and dancing. You can connect with her on LinkedIn

Management is an Art!

There are many B-Schools to provide you with the Knowledge of Management but is that enough? Is knowing it all enough? I believe it’s not. To be a successful manager you need to possess the art of applying the right knowledge (the craft), at the right time (the vision) and most essentially, delivering efficiently to the right people (the communication). Books and professor’s knowledge can tell you what different tools and frameworks you can use but which to apply where needs an understanding so deep it will be a tragedy to not call it an art.

A good manager must also have imagination and the audacity to redesign their organisations or the way they work, just as an artist needs vision, and a strong commitment to realise them.

One may argue about the new and improving scientific methods being taught to and applied by the up-and-coming managers for better decision making, or about those skills to derive unexpected success by making probable failure surrender to competence and nerve. But Management has always been more than that. Not all great students have been great managers, and not all great managers have started strong. It takes more than just the technical skills and intuition to be a good manager.

To be a good business manager, one needs to perfect their skills in dealing with people and express themselves verbally, just as an artist needs to master his craft. 

Moreover, just like the art has no right or wrong similarly the managerial decisions can’t be labelled correct or incorrect. In fact, in management failures can lead to new opportunities. There is no perfect formula for success.

Therefore, I strongly believe that Management is an Art and the artist needs to keep on practicing the art to achieve the epitome of success in the career.

About the Author:
Dr. Ankita Gabhane, Dentist is pursuing MBA from IIM Kashipur. She is an active member of different student bodies like the Cultural Committee and Admissions support body. You can connect with her on LinkedIn.

Explore the inevitable

Do you think MBA in an IIM is all about securing good grades and a 6 figure placement offer? Obviously, but not exhaustively

There are a plethora of opportunities and the exposure that a student gets here is quite enormous. What if I say, you are the ones pulling up sleeves and drafting up opportunities in terms of Bschool Competitions, Webinars with Corporate giants, Tedx Workshops, Start-up Fests, not a normal scenario in your high school and undergraduate education, but in a student-run campus like IIM Kashipur, you are the frontline strategist planning and executing the initiatives from alpha to omega. 

Name your interest, and we have a club for it. Well, most of us have this one thing that seems to be sweaty and daunting, the art of Public Speaking. You wouldn’t be surprised if I tell you that we have a very active and alive Toastmasters Club that helps you to break the shell that you have been building since childhood. Six months into the club, you will see the difference for yourself. Have you noticed a trend in recent years? I mean, it’s so evident in all the social media sites that the students of IIM Kashipur outperformed and bagged prizes in most of the corporate case study and other major competitions to quite an extent that it called for an organized club, The Corpus. The team of active participants majorly focuses on helping the students to compete and to provide an insight into the competition because the winners know the best!

Hola Amigo ! Bienvenue à la Maison 

Don’t be confused, it’s just a pinch of Spanish and a dollop of French that I have learned in a workshop and I probably want to show off a bit. During your stay at IIM Kashipur, you will come across a unique club and committee that promotes foreign languages and culture on the campus. From celebrating Halloween, language workshops to exchange programs, they inculcate the best practices to bridge the cultural gap and they train us to survive in any corner of the world. 

Take a small peek into the past, growing up, some of us wanted to design our own clothes, some of us even played with the camera toys and posed as serious photographers, some of us even posed a media person. To keep the child in you alive, we have Kaptured to capture the best moments at the campus, the design cell that makes us take pride in an IIM Tag with hoodies and T-Shirts and the MPRC, the media front that glorifies our college to the external world. All these are student-run clubs and committees, and they get exposed to the real corporate world even before stepping out of the campus. 

Every student in their lifetime at least once must have had this entrepreneurial instinct in them, whether the idea is good or bad, you would have dreamt to begin your own startup. To add fuel to your entrepreneurial instinct, we have Ecell with collaboration with FIED conducts workshops and I must mention their flagship event “Uttishtha”, which instills and brings out the hidden entrepreneurs to light. All these activities are done by the cell members, one can only imagine such huge and overwhelming responsibility and the impact that they can induce. 

The color green is associated with prosperity and the lush greenery scenes around the campus are the fruits to the effort of our ecology club, at one point you sip your coffee enjoying the scenic beauty, and indulge in few cheat moments while being still in the hustle and bustle environment. The students of the IIM Kashipur are compassionate and kind to the community surrounding them, through the Parivartan club, they give back to the community in multi-folds. 

A student studying at IIM Kashipur gets a chance to witness his managerial instincts in every possible way, from maintaining accounts, promoting events, and managing people, he puts the theoretical knowledge into practice. Managing clubs and committees is not a piece of cake, the outside exuberance is the result of every student’s contribution to the betterment of the fraternity. Every year the students pass the baton of their responsibility to the juniors to carry forward the legacy left behind, two years of journey embarks a special place in the hearts of every student at IIM Kashipur, it’s not just an IIM, it’s THE ONE TRUE IIM IN THE NORTH

About the Author:
Angelin is currently pursuing MBA from IIM Kashipur, with majors in Finance and Marketing. She is a part of the College’s Wellness Team. She is fond of playing Keyboard, going for long drives, cycling and listening to podcasts in her spare time. You can connect with her on LinkedIn

Acing the Cases – From the Horse’s Mouth

Case competitions are an integral part of B School life- not only because you get a kind of exposure but also the enormous amount of learning involved with it. Undoubtedly, academics form the basic ingredient of B School but also fine-tune yourself by participating in several International, National & Corporate Competitions. In one such international competition I participated (Zurich Enterprise Challenge), we did not manage to get into the Semi finale stage, but the problem statement was what attracted us the most. The statement demanded the vision for businesses & multinational enterprises post-Covid world.

Amidst the cramped schedule of a B School life, you would not get the time to do all the cases and do proper justice to them. So, picking and choosing the cases becomes a key aspect. “Pick a case and absolutely slaughter it” – should be the mantra. This indeed goes a long way, as a proper approach to a case requires a lot of research and groundwork & it effectively drains out oneself. Picking up simultaneous case competitions will not be a smart choice as the effort gets divided. There’s no fixed one-size-fits-all for the competitions. The main aim of competition varies on a case-to-case basis – sometimes it’s the PPO/PPI/ personal brand building, sometimes it’s the brand and sometimes it’s just the learning one can get by participating in it.

During my 2 years in IIM Kashipur, one thing I effectively learned is “perseverance holds the key to success.” In the first year, I did not participate much effectively in competitions except the only one in which our team won the title of National Winners in IIM Trichy. I felt that with the second year in the fold, it was wise to participate in the competitions that were restricted only to the first years. 

In the second year, it becomes clearer as the domain gets selective – for example, in the second year, I mostly participated in Marketing, Consulting, and Strategy competitions. Moreover, you learn a lot from your mistakes, in fact, the bitter pills you swallow shape up for the upcoming ones. In one such corporate competition organized by Infosys, a minor mistake from our end did cost our entry to the next round. So, these competitions, indeed serve as a replica, to what one might expect from the corporate world – “there are no free lunches incorporated.” One great aspect of participating in various case competitions is that you get to know in-depth about specific sectors you work in while preparing for the cases. The cases are handpicked live industry cases where the participants work towards developing a feasible and sustainable solution.

Lastly, one key aspect of nailing case competitions is having a core team that is well aware of their capabilities & weaknesses. There would be issues cropping up, arguments but the key is the light at the end of the road – a potentially feasible solution. A good team can indeed be a game-changer. Everybody must have set, defined roles within the team.

With this, I ended up with 2 National Winners, 2 Runners Up, 1 National Semi-finalist, and 3 National Finalists in my tally. Of course, you win some and lose some, but the key thing is “Never Stop, Never Settle.” The entire journey of participating in several competitions (National/ Corporate/ International) plays a pivotal role in shaping up one’s journey. For me, it was about going beyond the stereotypes, building and rebuilding myself. Always remember “What brought you here, won’t take you there.”

Each individual has a different story to tell, but selecting the right atmosphere is of utmost essential. I would like to thank IIM Kashipur and the stakeholders for putting up commendable effort and providing individuals with the right kind of atmosphere in which they can rebuild and transform themselves throughout their stay.

About the Author:
Rahul is an Electronics & Communication Engineer by qualification & completed his MBA from IIM Kashipur (19-21 batch). He has been recognized as the Top 100 Competitive Business Leaders’2021 by Dare2Compete and has been featured in Forbes India. He is an IT professional with 2 years of experience in Cognizant. In his past time, he likes solving puzzles & binging on OTT platforms. You can connect with him on LinkedIn.

FPM Perspective-Qualitative reflections of a Quantitative Researcher

Being a civil engineer who pursued an MBA in Operations Management, followed by enrollment as an FPM student in the Operations Management area, I had always classified myself as a person who was more (or only) inclined towards quantitative research. I always recognized and was fascinated by the power of numbers.  

Then, in January 2018, We, a group of 15 research students, entered the qualitative research methods class. Some of us were excited about the qualitative aspect of research, and some were absolutely disinterested; I am ashamed to admit that I, then, belonged to the second category. I later realized that I had been keeping a blind eye towards the ‘dark’ aspect of numbers. I, in no way, wish to belittle the quantitative – orientation of research, but qualitative research is beautiful in its own way. The qualitative research articles, if well written, provide a vivid image of the phenomenon that leads the audience to discover deep meanings of human experiences.  

I now understand that a good researcher should learn about both paradigms. The qualitative and quantitative approaches have distinct and complementary strengths. Both come with a different set of challenges and require different skills to overcome those challenges. For example, as a qualitative researcher, I can always adopt a grounded perspective where I do not need to identify the dependent and independent, nor do I necessarily need to propose hypotheses. My primary responsibility as a  qualitative researcher is to capture individuals’ hidden meanings and explore the phenomena’  possibilities, but it is easier said than done. The experience is like deep-sea diving; we know we are looking for something, but we do not actually know what we are looking for.  

During this journey, I came to realize the beauty and power of text. Sometimes I can feel the ‘dryness’  associated with the numbers in quantitative articles because numbers in no way explain the human feelings that should have been captured. I now recognize and appreciate the mental and emotional strength of qualitative researchers because I believe that risks and concerns are more significant in qualitative research, mainly because of the researcher’s level of involvement with the research process and the participants.  

If I am asked to clarify my stand regarding which type of researcher I would classify myself, I will find myself in a great dilemma. I would instead argue that one should appreciate the different values which are drawn out of the two different paradigms. A researcher who has familiarized himself with both the frameworks may develop a more profound intellectual capability. Reflecting on my learnings over the past years, I can conclude that I have developed more patience, and my inclination towards sheer objectivity has reduced. I have indeed developed slight but noticeable acceptance towards subjectivity and abstraction. I have grown to realize that there will always be things that can never be measured or analyzed quantitatively.  

Today, almost three years later, my qualitative exposure surely helps me reflect on the quantitative work better. 

About the author:

Taab Ahmad Samad is currently a Ph.D. Student (Operations Management) from IIM Kashipur. He is currently working in the field of crowdsourced logistics. You can connect with him on LinkedIn.

TFC-The Finance Club|IIM Kashipur

The Finance Club is one of the pioneer academic clubs initiated towards enhancing knowledge in the field of finance through innovative activities such as events, hands-on workshops, knowledge sharing sessions, and guest lectures from industry experts.

The club organizes innovative events throughout the year to enhance the knowledge of finance among the student community in various concepts such as trading, risk management, and investment strategies. BullsEye, a virtual simulation game that was conducted online recently saw overwhelming participation where students had an experience closer to real-time trading. Accrual Madness, Trade Wiz, Aestimatus, Open Outcry, The Simulation Challenge, High Stakes were some of the events conducted over the past year where students from various top business schools actively participated and gained exposure to various financial concepts such as risk management, portfolio management, fund allocation, etc.

TFC believes in practical application of financial knowledge and hence, Pragati, IIM Kashipur’s student-run investment fund was set up during October 2019 to foster investment knowledge among the student community. The fund was set up with the objective to provide investors with an opportunity for long-term capital appreciation by investing in a diversified portfolio comprising large and MidCap Securities. Students and alumni of the institution have actively participated in the fund by investing through multiple fund-raising windows and gained knowledge of its working. The fund is managed by the members of the club under the guidance of Prof. Dilip Kumar and has consistently outperformed its benchmark index Nifty 50 since its launch. Members of the club are actively involved in carrying out market research, portfolio tracking, and publishing monthly factsheets on the fund’s performance. The setup of the fund helped in real-time tracking of the securities market for the club members and other student’s investors during the challenging times of the pandemic which helped in formulating and analyzing various investment strategies to effectively monitor the risk volatility and performance of the portfolio.

The club published articles and newsletters regularly on current financial events through Vit Pratiti and The Financial Gazette. The club has started to post a new series of articles and content related to the working of various financial instruments and analysis of individual companies and conglomerates on social media in order to collaborate and share knowledge with the external community

Recently, the Club has partnered with StockGro, a mobile application for virtual trading and investing where students from leading b-schools get real-time experience in trading and portfolio management. Over 200+ students actively registered and participated in daily contests which helped them to stay updated with the current trends in the stock markets

The Finance Club conducts a number of knowledge-sharing sessions throughout the academic year. A variety of topics such as personal finance, investment, and trading strategies are discussed over a series of sessions which enhances the knowledge of working of stock markets and trading. Special sessions were also held on the discussion on Annual Budget 2019 and its special features which saw participation from more than 100 students.

The club hosted Coalescence – The Finance Summit in association with the academic forum to bridge the industry-university gap. Rakesh Singhania, CFO of Wells Fargo Bank, India, participated as a keynote speaker and shared his experience on how industries navigated adversity in the new era of the post-pandemic. The lecture was attended by over 100 student participants who had an opportunity to interact and gain insights on challenges faced by the financial markets. The club also hosted Money Matters, a guest lecture session in the presence of Prof. Dilip Kumar on discussing various investment-related topics concerning Pragati. The club also aided the students in preparing for competitive examinations by participating in FLIP National Challenge and CFA Research Challenge.

In this way, the club ensures that students get the essence of finance as a domain of management. It helps the students to learn about the scope in this domain and select the best course of action for their future choices. In nutshell, The Finance club fosters a culture for finance within the realms of IIM Kashipur.

OnYourMark- The Marketing Club| IIM Kashipur

OnYourMark (OYM), the Marketing Club of IIM Kashipur, was established on 16th January 2014 by the students to promote and nurture the knowledge of marketing in the IIM Kashipur community. The raison d’être for OYM is to create an amenable ethos towards marketing. OYM strives to create enthusiasm among the students for the domain of marketing and guide them to explore their careers in this field. As it has rightly been said in the business world, “Marketing is not anyone’s job… It’s everyone’s job!”. The club seeks to make the student community well-versed with the recent happenings in the field of marketing to aid their industry knowledge and recruitment preparation.

OYM oversees several initiatives to achieve the club’s:

Vision: To improve the marketing acumen of IIM Kashipur & build a culture of Marketing studies.

Mission: Organizing student-centric events to involve maximum participation and benefits for all.

With the growing use of the online medium, the club adapted to new modes of learning and incorporated new initiatives to emanate marketing knowledge through channels like social media and video conferencing. The following are some key activities undertaken by the club to foster accentuated learning:

  • Forevision Workshops: OYM facilitated Marketing Workshops from Forevision in Digital Marketing and Advanced FMCG sales techniques training which had successful participation of 100+ students. These help them gain practical exposure to the current trends and tools through real-life case studies, exercises, and live demos which are increasingly used in businesses nowadays and enable them to think out of the box, just like a marketer is supposed to. 
  • CutPaste Article series: Carefully curated articles are handpicked by OYM and extracts illustrating the concepts are shared with the batch in an email blast to familiarize and update them with the latest, modern terminologies in a short period. This allows them to quickly grasp these concepts and also gives them an option to read the full article provided to enhance their understanding.
  • Open house discussions: Discussions on current events as well as concepts that students learn in classrooms are further deliberated to gain deeper insights into the subject matter. 
  • Guidance in case-studies: Conducting in-depth discussions on the cases in the curriculum to better equip the students with the principles used in a light-hearted environment. This gives the students confidence to contribute in class and further their knowledge.
  • Encouraging a culture of corporate competitions: Corporate competitions give students a chance to apply curriculum learnings and search for viable solutions to real-world business problems. OYM identifies marketing based opportunities from a plethora of competitions and encourages student participation.
  • Marketing Weekly – OYM collaborated with Marketing Weekly to help the students navigate the overwhelming sea of marketing content. A breakdown of marketing concepts as well as the latest news are illustrated in these weekly articles keeps everybody up to date with the current industry trends and expectations. 
  • Social Media Campaigns: From concepts, trends, and everything marketing, campaigns are run on OYM social media handles to create an enthusiasm for marketing. These posts provide interesting reads with a visual aid to engage the reader. 

OYM also conducts events year-round to engage students with practical exposure to marketing concepts so that they learn the application of the same.  

  • Guerrilla MarFair: A Guerrilla marketing event enabling participants to create displays and advertise any brand. The event boasts average participation of 125+ students every year.
  • Markaholic: The flagship case study competition of OYM is an event conducted during Agnitraya. It received the highest registration of 1079+ in the previous year with participants coming from many top B-schools like IIM Lucknow, IIM K, IIFT, etc. 
  • Online Week of Social Media Marketing: Participants create a video Advertisement based on the theme selected and strive to go viral on social media. This tests and hones the participant’s social media strategy and technique which is a quickly growing and required marketing skill.
  • MarQuiz: An intra-college marketing quiz competition aimed at inculcating a competitive spirit and encouraging teamwork. It focuses on expanding the students’ knowledge in the domain.

The club also conducts entertaining events to further pique the interest of students in the field of marketing by incorporating elements like brand-knowledge, wit, and the ability to pitch your ideas such as:

  • Ambush Marketing: The participants use their creativity to implement the tactic of Ambush marketing to ambush their rival teams during the Kashipur Premier League. 
  • Pitch Please: A test of persuasion and zeal is presented as a challenge to the participant in this event. They need to pitch a product, an idea, or a sellable item, and winners are crowned based on the votes they receive from the audience.
  • DumbCharADs: A fun-filled brand guessing game that tests students on their brand awareness as well as acting acumen.

In this way, the club presents a spectrum of potential possibilities in the field of marketing for a student to pursue. It keeps a buzz around marketing domain and fuels the enthusiasm of the students at its best.

Scope of MBA in Business Analytics – IIM Kashipur

Analytics is a booming field right now and there is a heavy demand for analytics professionals. An MBA in Business Analytics will give you an overall understanding of how the analytics industry works as well as what role you would be required to perform. You may want to tap into this challenging and demanding field if you have an analytical mindset or an interest in statistics. The multidisciplinary MBA in Business Analytics covers technical, corporate, management, leadership, and communication training as well as business-analytical qualifications.

The MBA (Analytics) program at IIM Kashipur is a two-year full-time residential program which aims to prepare managers and future leaders who will shape the increasingly technology-oriented and data-driven world. It focuses on grooming its students to acquire knowledge, skills and attitudes for leadership profiles so that they can seamlessly navigate the ever-changing business landscape. The primary objective of the institute is to nurture the students through a balanced mix of academics, industry exposure and co-curricular activities. Here is an overview of why and what all parameters one must consider before giving a thought of pursuing MBA in Analytics.

What to Learn?

An MBA trains business leader, including managers, and your primary area of education in business and management. Your MBA program, including “hard” and “soft” business skills, gives you a strong understanding of business fundamentals. This is taught in a fixed sequence of necessary courses or “core courses.” Some of the classes you may encounter as part of your MBA core include:

· Accounting

· Finance

· Marketing

· Ethics

· Operations

· Macroeconomics

· International Business

· Microeconomics

· Human Resources

· Leadership

Your concentration on business analytics will delve into specific business analytics and data expertise and also teach you to understand business issues via a data-driven lens. The most advanced business analysis tools, case studies, and projects, including real-world data, allow you to practice practically. Some of the classes you may see offered as part of a business analytics MBA concentration include:

· Spreadsheet Modelling

· Accounting Analytics

· Marketing Analytics

· Financial Analytics

· Business Statistics

· Applied Regression

· Principles of Management Science

· Data Mining

· Forecasting and Modelling

· Business Computing

Data science vs Business Analytics are separate disciplines, which are quite often  used interchangeably. A layman may not be so concerned with this interchangeability, but professionals have to use the words appropriately, since they have a broad and immediate effect on the company.

Is Business Analytics and Data Science the same?

A Business Analyst’s job includes researching and extracting useful information to clarify business performance (present and future) from data sources. The correct plan to develop the organization is often decided by a Business Analyst. Whereas, Data scientists gather, analyze, and interpret broad data sets and use their analytical, mathematical, and programming skills to decipher valuable insights for solving difficult business problems. The three major factors that differentiate business analysts from data scientists are overall responsibilities, skill sets, and user interaction.

  • Overall responsibilities: The functional requirements that inform IT system design is provided by business analysts. On the other hand data scientists derive significance from the data generated and processed by such systems. Data scientists may also simplify the activities of the company analyst and be able to provide some of the market insights. Taking monetary benefits into consideration business analysts are slightly paid more than data analysts.
  • Skill Sets: Business analysts need data science expertise as well as skills related to communication, critical thinking, negotiation, and management. Whereas, data analysts need similar skills with a more in-depth emphasis on technological data manipulation.
  • User interaction: Business analysts also have more direct contact with system users, clients, system developers, and others as project facilitators and managers than data analysts do. That’s because market analysts will also interview individuals and learn more about how to enhance technology to help business processes. During the course of a single project, they work collaboratively with others. While data analysts can initially collaborate to define important data sets with internal subject matter experts, the majority of their work is performed independently.

Considering business analytics and data science domain, the former attracts the target base more owing to its business coherence and state of the art application-related job role. Apart from these there are few more benefits of pursuing business analytics which are as follows:

  • More informed decision making: Business analytics can be a valuable resource when approaching a substantial strategic decision. For example, when the company needs to analyze its product line update, business analytics can be applied to determine whether the updated product has resulted in faster service, more precise recommendations for resolution, and higher scores of customer satisfaction are achieved.
  • Improved operational efficiency: Analytics, beyond financial benefits, can be used to fine-tune company processes. Business analytics can be used to forecast business operations and assist the company by more effectively timing maintenance, enabling it not only to save operating costs, but also to ensure that it maintains assets at optimum levels of performance.

Is Business analytics a good career option?   

As digitization has become a buzz in recent times with technology and data being utilized from local grocery shops to well-sophisticated malls, the demand for business analysts also has increased significantly. Moreover, as per the statistics, for every hour, terabytes of data are generated by 6 billion connected devices. With this increasing demand, there is an insufficient supply of professionals.

From the above-mentioned courses offered by MBA institutes, one can get the knowledge of the following skills: Python, SQL databases, and R, Survey/query software, Business intelligence, and reporting software, Data visualization, Database design, Problem-solving skills, Effective Communication, Creative Thinking and Industry Knowledge. These help them to be the best fit for diversified job roles, which include data analyst, supply chain analyst, big data analyst, business analyst, marketing analyst, finance analyst, HR analyst, etc. The increasing demand for MBAs with analytical skills has made Business Analytics a relatively new and popular specialization in the management domain.

What is a Business Analytics MBA Job Market?

There is a shortfall of 1.5 million analysts, according to a report by the McKinsey World Institute. With an MBA in Business Analytics, you are eligible for a large range of careers, including popular C-suite jobs. This is because MBA graduates are qualified to hold leadership positions in a number of business environments. In all types of businesses, health industry marketing, supply chain management, data-driven decision-making is increasingly in demand. Based on their domain knowledge, skills and work experience, companies typically offer these job roles to candidates. The high demand for professionals with an MBA in Business Analytics is generated by MNCs, retail and manufacturing companies, IT companies, e-commerce companies, consultancies, telecommunications companies and business analytics and intelligence companies. MBAs are hired not only by MNCs but even by startups. As an MBA is primarily a business degree in Business Analytics, you will not be looking at data science work. You’ll be eligible for data-driven positioning instead. You will also have the advantage of competing with a background in analytics for more general positions in business management.

To conclude, the MBA in Business Analytics is an upcoming field of expertise in all sectors of the industry that is gaining increasing traction. The specialization demonstrates a positive and promising outlook, and you can go ahead and begin your MBA journey in Business Analytics for those of you who have long been skeptical about choosing this career path!

Deshmaa RT and Sakshi Poddar

MBA (Analytics) 2020-22

Indian Institute of Management Kashipur