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The importance of man-management


R Venkataraman  |  New Delhi 

There is a disconnect between what our arms students with, and the battles they fight in real life.
While the teaches and consequently tests for memory, logic and mathematical ability, real life or the school of hard knocks tests you for a completely different set of skills.
I pursued degrees in electronics and electrical engineering, and management; in both courses, I leveraged my and quantitative skills to get good grades.
Probability, statistics, calculus and the likes were some of my favourite topics back then. I happily ignored the critical lessons that I could have well learnt in those "tedious" sessions (which seemed oh-so-theoretical back then) of human resource and organisational behaviour.
As I now realise, man-management, marketing, corporate strategy and human resources are the most complex issues today.
Students also need to pay added attention to the finer details of skills. There used to be a single credit course in the first two terms of a degree called "Written and Oral Communication".
Most people ignore these classes, only to repent at leisure. Effective communication is a mandatory skill in modern work life.
Also, while it is good to aim in life with sound planning about future endeavours, fixated perceptions are a strict no-no.
The most common example is that of finance students, who, enamoured by the analyst world, crib about having to delve into marketing and sales. Do not forget, sales are an essential component of every individual's career. Your ability to sell your work is what brings home the bacon.
Creating an idea is like sowing a seed. But it is worthless without the ability to conceptualise and nurture it into sound executable actions.
And B-schools don't teach you that.
R Venkataraman is co-promoter and executive director, India Infoline. He graduated from IIM, Bangalore, in 1991

First Published: Tue, November 14 2006. 00:00 IST