How to Choose the Right B School

Top Management Colleges in India
Top Management Colleges in India

Except a few of the top notch business schools like the IIMs, most of the 5,500 business schools in India are producing “unemployable” sub-par business graduates, earning less than Rs 10,000 a month if at all they find placements, an ASSOCHAM study has said.

The report says that only 7 per cent of the MBA graduates are actually employable. Report blames the lack of quality control and infrastructure, low-paying jobs through campus placement, poor faculty, and poor syllabus maintenance as the major reasons behind India’s unfolding B-school disaster.

India has at least 5,500 B-schools operational at present, but when you include unapproved institutes operating in rented buildings selling distance degrees in regular “mode”, the number can be much higher, the report by Assocham said, expressing concern over the decay in the standards of these B-schools.

 “Low education quality coupled with the economic slowdown, from 2014 to 2016, campus recruitments have gone down by a whopping 45 per cent,” the study revealed.

In the last two years in Delhi-NCR (National Capital Region), Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Ahmedabad, Lucknow, Hyderabad, Dehradun etc around 220 B-schools have been shut down. At least 120 more are in line to close down in 2016.In the last five years, the number of B-school seats has tripled. In 2015-16, these schools offered a total of 5, 20,000 seats in MBA courses, compared to 3, 60,000 in 2011-12.

An average MBA student is spending almost Rs 3-5 lakh on a two-year MBA programme, their current monthly salary is a meager Rs 8,000 to Rs 10,000.

 Problems in management education in India:

Not enough seats in Tier-1 B-schools:

The top B-schools in the country, which are actually able to provide a good quality education and placement opportunity, have insufficient seats to accommodate all the meritorious students.

A large number of CAT aspirants qualifying with a decent 80 percentile score or above, seeking admission in the colleges have a few seats on offer. This genre of candidate pool consists of a substantial number (50,000 or more) of applicants every year hits a dead end after not being able to secure admission in any of these top ranking institutions.

Candidates who score well are unwilling to settle for Tier-2 or Tier-3 colleges, but the top management institutes simply cannot provide seats for all such meritorious students.

Droping an year to re-appear makes things trickier and since performance on the day cannot always be guaranteed it makes for a riskier option.

Low quality education in smaller B-schools:

While there is a dearth  of seats in the top institutions, paradoxically, seats are going vacant in Tier-2 and Tier-3 management schools.

This is because many new institutes still do not follow globally benchmarked practices to ensure  top scorers select these schools.

The problem can be either be solved by increasing the number of seats in premier business schools or upgrading the other lesser known options still struggling to make a  mark.

Moreover, these smaller institutes attract lesser salaries for teachers. Thus, quality of faculty applying for such colleges ensure a below par education delivery, thus  of pea-nuts attracting only monkeys scenario makes for a very poor academic culture

Lack of skill based education and an unrealistic syllabus content:

Skill based education is somewhat lacking in all the higher education fields in India and management is no different. The focus of B-schools need to shift from theoretical knowledge to skill based education with a more practical and dynamic approach. Management education is worthwhile only on pedagogies with content focused on using case studies etc. instead of imparting the practical expertise attained from years of experience in the domain.

Management institutes, not following latest contextual syllabi with a mix of innovative pedagogical tools and not thriving on innovative delivery models create an immense disparity between the real and academic culture of business management. Lower tier B-schools do not exist on the ambiance of hands on training.

Major gap lies between what the job market needs in its employees and what the B-school freshers are able to provide to the industry and a non – refreshed syllabus just widens it.

What sets apart a good B-school?

The gulf between top business schools and others is through intellectual contribution by faculty in the form of research, publications, usage of innovative pedagogical tools, usage of latest state of the art infrastructure, conducting management development programmes and by providing consulting services.

Indian MBA vs foreign MBA:

Management graduates from India lack on-the-job experience though they are in demand the world over. Summer internships are usually offered to bridge this gap but are often not found enough to compensate the challenges put across in full-time employment weather.

Thus the trend in India of getting an MBA first and then getting a job is changing. Premier management institutes in India are increasingly giving more credit points during admission process to students with some work experience after the Bachelor’s degree. This also helps them to land mid-level managerial level jobs early in their careers which is the primary focus in all B-schools

The process of selections beckons a few steps to make sure you get into the right college:

 Choosing the right B-school that matches your aptitude and attitude can be a life changing move.The below mentioned steps can help you in this decision making process:

Step One: Why do you want to do an MBA?


Are you looking for a complete career change? Do you want to change job function or industry? Are you looking to break through a glass ceiling? Depending   on career considerations, you should also spend some time reflecting on the location of the business school. This can be important factor when it comes to taking advantage of the school’s network of alumni and relationships with the local business community. Even if it means brushing up on a second language, the location could be a crucial lever to opening up your personal and professional life to international prospects.

Obviously, you will have more than three questions and several possible answers to each one. Why, you wonder, do working professionals interrupt successful careers to go back to school for one or two years. What do successful applications to business schools look like? The answers to these and other questions will drive your selection process. Start writing entries in an MBA diary, a good habit to get into for the rest of your MBA. Keeping a diary will help you focus on your commitment and be honest and sincere with yourself. One of the first entries will be your GMAT score.

Step Two: Where Do You Want to Work?

Where Do You Want to Work?

Your choice of location can depend on the industry you are going to be working or aspire to work in. Don’t forget to plot your search for the best place on the planet to do your MBA as a diagram in your diary.

Step Three: Getting the right focus

Getting the right focus

Richard Branson knew he wanted to be an entrepreneur at a very early age, as do many successful businesspeople in every sector of the economy. Some people, it seems, know what they want to do almost from birth and cannot wait to start doing it. If you know your strengths, whether it be in entrepreneurship, finance or general management, and more importantly, you want to build on them, doing an MBA is an excellent means of achieving your goal.

Once you know which skills you want to focus on, you are in a better position to consider which kind of general management MBA is right for you. That’s because nearly all general management MBA programs offer far more than the core management skills. London Business School, for example, is where you might apply if you want to work in finance. A programme strength will enable you to tailor an MBA to your particular goals. Careful selection of modules may enable you to strike out in new directions over the course of your career. Furthermore, you will still be able to take advantage of the alumni networks that are the hallmark of general management MBA programmes. On the other hand, Specialized MBA programmes often lead to opportunities in niche industries such as Healthcare or Hospitality Management or even the very select wine business. If you want to fulfill the dream of a lifetime and switch to a career in an industry in which you have no previous experience, then a Specialized MBA might be just for you.

Step Four: Full-time or Part-time?

If you want to advance your career in your company or sector or relaunch your career in a different part of the globe, a full-time MBA is probably the ideal choice For example, say you want to improve your team-building skills, a full-time MBA can do just that. Sharing your life in an intense learning environment with 100 plus other MBA students from different cultures will most certainly turn you into a super team player and help you master adaptability.

 Part-time MBA programs are the ideal choice for professionals who do not want to give up thriving careers to attend a school.

Step Five: Local School or International Powerhouse?

Entire experience of an MBA is bigger than the sum of its courses .Do you prefer a local business school to a foreign destination? If you’re aiming for the top programs, the choice of location will only make a difference to you if the qualities of the particular school are in line with your criteria. If one of your criteria is an MBA program with an international student body and an alumni network with chapters in 50 countries, you would then select among those schools matching this criteria. At Instead, MBA participants who select the Wharton exchange option can live and study in Europe, Asia and North America during the MBA. Instead also offers courses at its new Middle East campus in Abu Dhabi.

Local business school will be economic and will limit your experience to the situations that are relevant to your geographic habilitation. The exposure is again conditioned on the fact of how one see himself/herself spawning a career i.e. if an international career is an objective probably an international B-school is your destination that gets you to your dream company faster.

Even if the same criteria were even further conditioned on your continuing to work, you could still choose a modular MBA program with campuses in different countries. At the very least, you could go for an online MBA programe that is open to international students.

Step Six: Return on Investment

Return on Investment

How to enhance the return on investment of an MBA is the million-dollar question among most MBA students. Fortunately, the return on investment is indeed rapid for the vast majority of graduates, with the average return being three to six years.

In calculating the rate of return, candidates should also consider whether as a rule the business-schools with the highest tuition rates offer the best return on investment or lesser tuition fee can offer better ones. Finally the end experience is worth the scrutiny as it’s an investment where returns will be coming throughout the tenure of your professional life.

Step Seven: Rankings


Before applying to business schools, most prospective MBA candidates consider the rankings such as the HRD ministry,AICTE rankings,Times Of India  rankings for national options and  QS rankings,Financial Times and Which MBA (Economist Intelligence Unit) in the UK, and Business Week and The Wall Street Journal in the USA for international options. Candidates should match their criteria to the top schools in the rankings and consider rankings of only widely accepted and respected ones.Paid media are slowly selling the ranking system to the highest bidders.

Step Eight: Contacting Schools

Make sure you have been given all the information that business schools provide. By requesting brochures and other hand-outs,going through websites,connecting to alumni groups  on Facebook,Linkedin etc, you can have facts and figures about the schools on your list. School visits are also important. A visit to the campus of your choice will enable you to see the school facilities firsthand gets you a real feel of the learning environment.In a campus visit, you can meet faculty, alumni and dedicated staff in the student career services cell or placement cell.

Step Nine: Confirming Your Selection

Your research is now stuffed with facts and figures. Now is the time to sit down with an MBA expert or career counselor who will confirm your choices. As well as your dream school, you are advised to select two to three schools to which you have a good chance of getting an admission.