Dec 11, 2017

5 Lessons from MBA IIT Kanpur

1.      Learning is not confined only to classrooms

As the first semester is over, I realize that apart from classroom subject matter, there are a lot more things that I have learnt here. Learning takes place in almost every aspect of one's life at MBA IIT K.

The induction activities that our seniors conducted before the official start of the semester was a great way to interact with the batch-mates.
The group projects and the assignments that followed after the semester began, taught us the art of working productively in teams, time management, importance of feedback and learning while mingling with the people from diverse backgrounds.
Every week, we had eminent speakers from various top positions in the corporate world, sharing topics that they were passionate about which helped us to constantly expand our knowledge base into new areas.

2.       Be prepared to leave behind your comfort  zone

In the class you will be constantly evaluating cases and putting forward your point of view. Everyone is constantly encouraged to put forward their opinion to be refuted or supported by fellow classmates. Not only will this help you to think critically, it will also give you an opportunity to practice public speaking. With time you will find yourself coming up with stronger points and speaking confidently and convincingly to defend your point. There is nothing right or wrong in the opinion you give, as long as you have some logic backing it. Learning and refining that skill is an essential part of overall development. In the class room you will get ample opportunity to do so.

3.       Time is limited! Find your goal and interest

People come to business school for so many reasons, it can be academic, networking or for career transition. Things will get smoother if you are clear about your priorities and why you wish to come to business school.  For each trade-off you make here, these priorities will help you making that decision.
No matter what your priorities are, you will get ample time in IIT Kanpur to pursue those. I am an academically inclined person, may be a small percentage in the MBA crowd, but the excellent faculty in the department has been a great opportunity for me to explore further.

4.       It is okay to not be a finance or accounting major

You don’t need to be a 'finance-wiz' to ace in MBA classes. People come from diverse backgrounds (in IIT Kanpur’s case from Engineering/Science Background), so they might or might not have taken a single finance class in their career. It does not matter as long as you are willing to push through the subject material with persistence. You will learn that, while you lack finance knowledge, another person may lack operations knowledge. Everyone has something to learn from one another and contribute in the overall learning process.

5.       A transformational experience to look forward to
For many of us it was a tough choice to come to business school, because it meant taking time out from an advancing career. But now I realize that I can explore areas that I never would have had the opportunity to do otherwise. I discovered my love for economics after coming here and I am pondering on proceeding further in that field. The seminars that I talked about are excellent opportunities to explore new fields. You get to create a diverse network which can help in your career ahead.
Last but not the least, I have found a group of friends with whom I am going to share perhaps every great life experience in future, because of the strong bonds we have developed while riding the roller coaster called MBA!

- Orchi Bhattacharyya
  MBA IIT Kanpur
  2017-19 Batch


Nov 5, 2017


The flagship event of the 6th edition of Prabandhan, presented by Department of Industrial Management and Engineering, Reflections was nothing short of delightful. Upon the scene of the setting sun,  The event opened with an environment of tense expectations, keeping the audience on their toes with complete attention on the dais. Reflections saw participation of 6 eminent personalities and thought leaders of their respective industries in Mr. Sreeji Gopinathan from Reckitt Benckiser, representing the FMCG industry, Mr. Utsav Rawat from Novartis representing HealthCare and the Pharma industry, Mr. Satish Mittal, ex-CTO of Vodafone, heralding the telecom industry, Mr. Dinesh Modi, of Eros International representing the entertainment industry and our very own Dr. Devlina Chatterjee, an insightful member of the Department of Industrial Management and Engineering representing education and academia, moderated by Ms. Mitali Mukherjee, Co-Founder and Editor at Money Mile, a charismatic leader in her own right. Savants of their respective fields, these eminent architects chose to describe to the crowd at IIT Kanpur, the respective trends in the fields they represent and the external factors that have an effect on the maneuvers corporate structures make towards development. Mr. Rawat emphasized on the second wave the renaissance and reinvention of the new industrial revolution that converges technology with sustainability, the same factors that have helped the healthcare industry retain its growth juggernaut while Mr. Gopinathan emphasized on building with the right intent for the long run, with patience among the rural populus who embody the social fabric of the nation.  They reassured the student community present that modern day India with its immense demography presents boundless opportunities in terms of outreach to truly reinvent the focus and mileage of growth. Dr. Devlina pointed out that such growth comes with a responsibility among the educated and financially stable who would then take up the onus to represent the opinion of the masses and drive ‘inclusive growth’. The driver of such responsible growth should be one considerable step at a time, where Dr. Chatterjee, Ms. Mukherjee and Mr. Mittal brought up excellent examples from their experiences where the rural segment has not kept pace with the ever-changing global landscape of technological upgradation and their requirement was at a much more basic level such as the absence of covered toilets or even electricity. This represents a completely different perspective than the one offered by the urban community which has moved away from money to comfort. In such a varied landscape, it is the right time for the Gen Y to step in, as Mr. Mittal so eloquently put forth. The discussion veered towards the distinct lack of jobs in the market, with figures threatening the ever looming downturn, and the collective suggestion was that the onus was on the true thinkers who could identify the pain points of society. The opportunities to collectively address the entire spectrum of root causes that evolve our cognizance of the real pain points in the society. The panel also spoke extensively about the bridge between academia and its applications, the paradigm shifts that the jugaad culture could see, if India had the gumption, patience and brawn to take the leap of faith at the right time, and most importantly the responsibility to identify the right problems to drive inclusive growth among the entire country as a collective, even bringing forward candid examples from their lives and answering queries from the crowd. The students were overtaken by a rush of belonging to the India that represents a truly bountiful land of opportunities with its immensely large demographic of 1.3 billion and reflected upon a possible change in thought processes can help the new-age techno-managers that MBA IIT Kanpur stands for, take the under-developed core engineering industry from strength to strength with the support of the existing governance. Ideation and job-creation was the call of the hour, and the audience went home to the thoughts of a completely new avenue of career-building where exploration and daredevilry in the corporate landscape were strengths and not blockades into driving socially responsible growth for our nation. Reflexions, the flagship of the new look meaner and ambitious Prabandhan, provided this immense learning experience, which rightfully closed to thunderous applause.

Nov 4, 2017

ALUMNI CONNECT- "Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence" by Mr.Nitin Aggarwal, Quantitaive Analyst, Google

The Department of Industrial and Management Engineering, IIT Kanpur had the opportunity to host a Webinar by Mr. Nitin Agarwal, Quantitative Analyst, Google. The Alumni committee of MBA holds the credit for organizing the webinar. An alumnus of MBA-IIT Kanpur, Nitin Agarwal gave a lot of insight into the world of Machine learning.  The webinar started with the speaker asking our views on Machine Learning. As he explained Machine Learning is the process of making lot of small decisions so as to get an end outcome. The basic objective of machine learning is not to memorize older data set but to recognize a pattern from the given data so as to be able to take decisions on newer data set.  This is where it differs from Statistics. While statistics draws inference answering the question “what does the data mean?”, machine learning is all about prediction, which answers the question “Does it work well?”.  So statistics describes data while machine learning takes decisions based on that data.  The industry is gradually moving from Statistics to Machine Learning.
The speaker next explained the different categories of Machine Learning which include: Supervised, unsupervised, semi supervised and reinforcement. In case of supervised learning all the images were labelled and in case of unsupervised learning the images were not labelled at all. In semi supervised learning while some images are labelled, some are not.  It is this semi supervised learning which is where the industry is currently focussing on. The speaker touched upon the neural network and deep learning.  He also explained the different technologies that extensively use machine learning.  Some notables are, IBM Watson, Google Prediction API, Tensor flow etc. As an MBA student it is imperative that we know how to take business decisions based on the inference drawn from the data.
Finally Mr. Nitin advised us what courses we can take over the MOOCs as well as in our department so as to build a strong foundation in Analytics. He categorically emphasized the importance of continuous learning in this fast changing world and the need to update ourselves to the changing need of the industry. It was a very insightful and informative session and would help people take an informed decision, who want to build a career in Analytics.