In conversation with Rakesh Mediretti, Deputy Director, Jagdish Sheth School of Management
In this interview, Rakesh Mediretti, Deputy Director, Jagdish Sheth School of Management, elaborates about what a business school expects from its students and how holistic training helps them prepare for a successful future
How does one prepare for an MBA college interview? What do you expect from the applicant?
The key to be successful in the MBA interview is to ensure that one is suitably prepared. Every school has its own selection process and hence it is important for the candidate to understand the mission and values of the school. Alignment of the thought process to that mission is a great starting point. It is important that the awareness level on the current geopolitical topics is up to date and the aspirants should be able to hold conversations around that. Clarity regarding career goals is important and hence the applicant must align that to the kind of placements the business school is known for.
The golden rule for being successful in any interview is the ability to lead the interviewer into the next question. This is a skill which can be practiced and mastered. The sense of dressing up and body language hold equal emphasis and play an important role, especially in the first few minutes of the interview. One must remember two important aspects, one is that the interviewer is looking for reasons to select and not reasons to reject and the second is that in most of the cases the decision to select or reject happens in the first few minutes of the interview. The schools look for traits like clarity of purpose, effective communication, thinking on your feet and high awareness levels of the environment around you.
Is MBA relevant today?
MBA schools are ‘finishing’ schools and are still relevant today especially from the first job perspective. Most of the relevant MBA schools have adopted curriculum which offer the opportunities of extensive interaction with the industry which include working on live business problems in collaboration with the industry executives. These projects when clubbed with other skill-building courses and long-term impacting management courses give the MBA students a head start in obtaining a relevant role in the industry and success in their first job. MBA education also provides a great platform for networking and joining the network of alumni always plays an important role in enhancing one’s career.
At the Jagdish Sheth School of Management what are your key strengths?
Ours is a truly global business school with the Board of Directors drawn from three continents, namely, Asia, Europe and America. We have a globally acclaimed curriculum with global faculty. Both the campuses of the institute are AACSB-accredited and the programmes are QS World University-ranked. We offer global careers to students in collaboration with the best global business schools in Europe, Australia and the US. The curriculum adopted by us is aligned with the industry needs and it prepares the students for new-age industry roles.
Which skillsets do you expect to remain high in demand for 2023 and beyond and how does your institute prepare its students to acquire them?
We are a mission-driven school which believes in nurturing holistic, socially responsible and continuously employable professionals. The school aligns this mission with the skillsets that are most valued by the industry. The school addresses to build those skillsets which cater to the industry’s needs of solution orientation, people and team orientation, dealing with change, social sensitivity, entrepreneurial orientation, managing self, globalisation, multidisciplinary approach, analytical mindset and integration of data and communication.
What is your advice for MBA aspirants?
The first advice would be to choose the right business school that matches with one’s career aspiration and that will provide the right kind of exposure to achieve the stated career objectives. The opportunities are multi-fold today and there are programmes available which can help the students get into global careers. Use the two years spent in the business school to enhance the overall personality as the curriculum of the relevant and progressive business schools encourage holistic development.
What have been the placement trends in the past two to three years which were impacted by the pandemic?
We take pride in having handled the pandemic well and probably our institute is the only business school in India which had zero impact on the timelines and the effectiveness on its academic delivery during this period. All activities from admissions to placements happened exactly as per the academic calendar. We take pride in achieving 100 per cent placements for our students. For the batch of 2020-22 we had more than 130 companies that participated with Rs 23 lakhs as the highest compensation. Up to 35 per cent of our students had more than two offers with roles in marketing technology, financial technology, banking, sales and business analytics. The ability to adapt and the commitment of our faculty and staff towards achieving the common mission of the school made all the difference during the difficult pandemic-driven situation.