Posted in Human Resources Articles, Total Reads: 2005
, Published on 20 August 2012
MBA as all of us know stands for Master in Business Administration. The word ‘business’ here tends to overpower all our thoughts on this particular degree. If one asks MBA aspirants why they want to pursue an MBA or an equivalent program, one of the most common answers would be ‘to know the various aspects of a business’.
According to some concepts of microeconomics that I came across in my first trimester as an MBA student business comprises of money making opportunities. And to understand its nitty gritties one has to understand how wealth is created and destroyed. But I would like to consider business as anything we engage in. We classify people as belonging to ‘business-class’ or having a government sector job etc. But I think the government is no different than a business. Governmental activities deal with managing people, managing resources, negotiating with people at various levels, managing the economy of a country. These are some familiar sounding roles and responsibilities of MBA graduates.
Being an MBA graduate also provides great opportunities in getting jobs in Government agencies as well. These job profiles require big thinkers, team players, analytical abilities etc. MBA curriculum has a lot to do with developing these abilities of a person. The government agencies and other public sector companies value MBA graduates as staff and aggressively hire MBA graduates. There are all sorts of profiles and opportunities for MBAs in this sector. There is place for a Marketing person, a Finance MBA graduate, an HR, a consultant, a strategist, an Accounting MBA, an e-Business MBA and list could go on.
But the actual reason that got my mind ticking on the role of MBAs in governmental organisations was the interaction I had with few of our alumni. It all started with brain drain. Brain drain is an oft repeated and very hackneyed phrase that we come across. MBA graduates all over our country look towards high paying jobs. This is the reason why we don’t shy away from leaving the country and rarely giving a thought to giving it back to the government or rather the people. But there still are a handful of people who do come back and contribute to the society they themselves are a part of. And one of the best ways to that is by being a part of government projects.
Government is responsible for the people. But for development the people also have to be in tandem and be responsible. A major area where the governmental organisations falter the when the execution of plans come into play. There are ample numbers of plans, bills, legislations that are formulated by the government, be it the central or the state government. But execution is the key. This is where we can really make a difference. Being the marketers, finance bigwigs, strategists we can contribute in taking these plans to the public.
Now the position of an IT Consultant to a Chief Minister is a profile that can make a difference. What better than a person with an MBA in systems here. Like any other organisation the government needs to market itself and its ‘products’. As a MBA one can use one’s knowledge in marketing domain to reach out to the masses, devise the best possible ways so that people can make the best possible use of the policies and schemes by the government. A major politician while campaigning for elections can be seen in a troupe with academicians, HR managers, consultants etc. The reason behind it is that they want to understand what masses want, what gets them moving. And inputs from these able minds are strategically used in building up the campaign.
To emphasize the role of MBA graduates in the government, I would like to mention the concept of viral marketing. A person with an MBA in marketing is well aware of the concept. He/she understands the need of the pre-existing social media to achieve greater brand awareness. These techniques could very well be used in reaching out to the public.
If talking about the role of MBAs in the government, another term that crosses my mind is ‘Social entrepreneurship’. Social entrepreneurship implies using business policies in driving social change. Bill Dryton is the man who has coined the term ‘social entrepreneurship’. Like any other entrepreneur these entrepreneurs fight it out through all the obstacles. Social entrepreneurship aims at bringing about change by identifying societal problems, unleashing resources from within the society and develops strategies for sustainable growth.
Identifying the problems and changing the status-quo for good is not enough. What needs to be done is to actually change the society from within. Social entrepreneurship is not just a moral sounding concept, but it actually is a professional course. MBA in social entrepreneurship is a course offered by the very prestigious Yale, Harvard, Stanford, Naorthwestern University etc. It is yet to achieve recognition in India.
Anybody and everybody who wants to contribute to the society can make a difference. But as MBA graduates we can achieve greater success and make our country a better place. The business Managers need to take initiatives to felicitate progressive change and bring about radical shift in their thinking. And the existing ones need to slow down, pause, introspect and embrace the future. We need to believe that we can and we will make a difference.