Innovation is nothing new to KIAMS; infact it is the very basis of its evolution. Starting out as a centre for Management Development Programmes for senior executives of the Kirloskar Group in 1991, KIAMS became a full-fledged business school in 1998
Innovation is nothing new to KIAMS ; infact it is the very basis of its evolution. Starting out as a centre for Management Development Programmes for senior executives of the Kirloskar Group in 1991, KIAMS became a full-fledged business school in 1998. Understandably, its curriculum has always been deeply rooted in its corporate connect.
However, even by KIAMS's standards, academic session 2012 is proving to be quite a paradigm shift. In a first-of-its-kind move in B-schools across India, all development needs of an ace future manager has been brought under one umbrella - the Professional Personality Programme or 'PPP'. The PPP has two main divisions - Personality Development (in the first-year) worth 8 credit points; and Professional Development (in the second year) which has 16 credit points.
"Earlier, activities like SIP, alumni interaction, Individual Industry Project, KIAMS LIVE Project, Research with faculty, and competitions conducted by CRISIL, ITC innovation foundation, were mostly stand-alone, and did not a part of the formal, graded curriculum," says Professor Shruti Das of KIAMS. "The PPP has changed that."
The first big test of PPP came on the 28th and 29th of September 2012. Under the 'two locations, one campus' philosophy, the 15th batch of KIAMS (Harihar and Pune combined) came together for their Outbound Training. The entire course of 130 students was divided randomly (not campus-wise) into two groups. One of these groups did their OBT on the 28th while the other group went on the 29th.
The day started early for the Outbound group, which gathered at the KIAMS Harihar gate at 5 AM. By 7.30 AM, all 65 students of the group reached the camp where a series of group activities like the 'tangled rope', the 'marbles task', and the 'mission raft' ensued.
"The task looked childishly easy to us," recalls Titir Ghosh, from KIAMS, Harihar. "The teams planned, thought, applied... and failed. After several attempts and reworked strategies, all teams finally got the job done; and we earned our breakfast!"
"We were compelled to work as a team, choose leaders, and accept orders from them, in order to perform tasks efficiently," sums up Chitransh Srivastava. "It made us see our classroom concepts in a more practical light."
Ever since the immense success of this assessed OBT, the PPP has smoothly ingrained itself into the DNA of KIAMS.
"Our education has a natural industry tilt," says Dr. Gopal Iyengar, Director, KIAMS, Harihar. "PPP is a process that has evolved out of our deep-rooted corporate connect with the Kirloskar Group of Companies"
"There is no scope for ad hoc'ism at KIAMS in utilizing our corporate connection," remarks Dr. V.S. Pai, the resident 'guru' in Strategic Management. "Over the years, eminent faculty members of KIAMS have studied, documented, and reinvented procedures that help students as well as the faculty of KIAMS get the most out of the Kirloskar organisation."
From SIP's to industrial visits, scheduled interaction with senior executives, round-the-year guest lectures, projects in functional areas, and final placements with various companies, including the Kirloskar Group; the corporate connect is woven into the KIAMS fabric.
"Nothing compares with being a part of a LIVE Project in a Company of the Kirloskar Group," says Apoorva Kulshreshtha, who is part of a Live project at Kirloskar Oil Engines Ltd (KOEL) along with five other students of Batch 15th of KIAMS Pune. "Our live project revolves around managing the HR Help Desk. It involves interacting with 3100 employees of KOEL, and answering their queries and doubts regarding policies and procedures pertaining to HRA, HRR, and Leave etc. The assigned students themselves deal with the queries, escalating only major issues. Fortunately we met one of our 'super seniors' at KIAMS, who has been a great help."
A continuous stream of consulting assignments, Assessment Centers, RKQP (Ravi Kirloskar Quality Prize) assignments, and Management Development Programmes for the Faculty of KIAMS ensures that there is no dearth of cases based on first-hand knowledge of current industry practices. Inevitably, these cases find a place in international competitions/ publications.
This highly evolved corporate connectivity with the parent organisation has reaped rich dividends for both the Kirloskar Group as well as KIAMS . The ultimate beneficiaries, of course, are the future managers being groomed at KIAMS.