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The next article of interest from the Drucker book is on “management education.” Having undergone one recently, I would like to compare my experiences with Drucker’s thoughts. My comments are interspersed.
What I would like to see – and what I have practiced now for many years in my own teaching – is:
Management education only for already successful people. I believe management courses for people without a few years of management experience are a waste of time.
[I don't agree - fully. While I do believe that a sufficient amount of professional work experience is a necessary prerequisite, I don't think that it's always possible to have at least some of that in managerial roles. I am a living example. What is necessary, however, is an appreciation for management.]
Management education for people from the private, the public, and the not-for-profit sectors together.
[My batch was adequately diverse. For example, one of my classmates was from Coal India Ltd. Diversity manifests as viewpoints during class discussions. We did not have anyone from the not-for-profit sector because this was not a general management degree.]
Planned, systematic work by the students while at school in real work assignments in real organizations – the equivalent of the MD residency.
[Our internships are at real companies and on real-world projects. I have already applied a lot of what I learnt at college in my current assignment.]
Far more emphasis on government, society, history, and the political process.
[I pick government and politics. Not sure about society. Definitely not history. Please! The BBC recently aired a program during which the interviewee (a senior politician from Israel) said, "Why do you want to go back in history? It only tells you not to make the same mistakes. It does not stop you from making completely new ones. If at all you want to remember something, put it on the Internet and it will remember for you."]
Teachers with real management experience and enough of a consulting practice to know the real challenges.
[100% required and 100% true at SP Jain.]
Major emphasis on the non-quantifiable areas that are the real challenges – and especially on the non-quantifiable areas outside the business – at the same time much greater quantitative skills, that is, in understanding both the limitations of the available numbers and how to use numbers.
[I think it's very important to know the limitations of available numbers. For example: forecasts and averages.]
Action point: Take executive development courses that pertain to your current position and the position to which you aspire. Apply the concepts directly to your work assignments.
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