Management education was something I had always wanted to do. Not because of my abilities, but because of my inabilities to pursue a career in any other technical field. Now that I am almost through with the course, I take a moment to look back and reflect on my learning’s at my management school. I am sure I learnt nothing more than what has been listed below. Except for names of local booze, slangs in 6 different languages and when to keep my mouth shut.
1) Wal-Mart has the best supply chain.Ever.Period.
Three out of five examples cited by the faculty and students directly or indirectly refer to Wal-Mart. I have been led to believe that the processes of the company are so much in place that probably no company can ever duplicate it. I am enamored, but still unclear of how the company does that. Did everyone believe I was born knowing all about Wal-Mart? Or did they feel I would make efforts to go read a book? What the hell, Wal-Mart has the best supply chain. Who on earth is gonna question me on that anyways?
2) Nike is not about branding. It is Vice-versa.
The most cited example in any marketing class. Whatever may be the topic, Nike is the example. Nike does brand building, brand management, brand valuation, etc etc. I wonder who is willing to buy a Nike if they don’t have money to do so. But from the sound of it Branding will propel a bankrupt customer to rob a bank and come running to a Nike outlet to buy a shoe. They say it is the “Power of branding”. I say it is the “Height of wishful thinking”. They say “You are a fool, you do not know marketing”. I shut up.
3) Vision and Mission of a company are not the same. They are different.
I cannot explain the above statement. I am still unclear of their differences and unsure of how they matter.
4) It depends.
Remember this: There is no one right answer to anything in management. Or anything in life for that matter. Every question aimed to test the knowledge of the faculty by a geek sitting in the first row is answered in the same monotonous, obscene tone: “Well, It Depends”. You can do anything you want with a business problem, you can screw a case study, you can question the established, because everything depends. Yeah, it depends on the patience of a listener how much of dreams his eyes can conceive. And budding managers are pretty good at that.
5) Nothing is impossible.
A case study last for 45 minutes. A company which was “sick” had negative cash flows for the past 100 quarters and whose management sounded something like a clan of vandals, has changed. It is now a publicly listed company, with a profit margin of 25%, has people like Tata and Ambani running behind the management(who have been awarded the Nobel peace prize, “If Obama can get it why can’t they” is the presenting team’s retort) for their referrals. Everything is hunky-dory. And nobody in the audience voices one bloody concern. This is the power of teamwork in a case-study.
6) Tata Nano, Apple, Dell, Pepsi/Coke are examples which you can use anywhere. It does not matter whether it’s a strategy or a finance class. It does not matter if it happened in these companies or not. These products/companies have been made in heaven. What can they possibly do wrong?
7) Buzzwords to use---“Outsourcing”, “Strategy”, “Innovation”, “Competencies”, “Alliance”, “Takeover/Merger and Acquisition”, “Economic times/Wall street journal/Forbes”, “Nimble companies(This is probably the funniest)”, “A 800lb gorilla(Reference to a very big company”,” The company must look at overseas markets”. “Diversification”,”S.W.O.T/P.E.S.T”, “Profile Vs. Package”
I spent 6 bloddy lacks on this degree. My failure to gain any knowledge is often disposed as my inability. That undoubtedly is true to a extent. I truly deserve a chance to rewind. Everything I know does not matter in the “corporate world”, supposedly. In the middle of all this my father is searching for the office where he can file for bankruptcy. Chapter 11, where are you???