PGPM Alumni Speak

  • In this article, PGPM alumnus Anjana Rao, Principal Product Manager, Zebra Technologies, United States, speaks about her journey at SPJIMR.

    What led me to pursue a management programme after spending considerable time in the industry:

    Prior to my MBA – I had spent a little over 5 years in the tech industry in different roles of Systems/ Software engineer to Technical QA Lead. But, the exposure technical projects provided me left me wanting for more.

    The teams in the Technology industry work in silos and often there is no understanding of the big picture or opportunity to involve yourself at the strategic level or have an influence in the organizations’ key drivers or activities . This is because the scope of the technical role is constrained to certain areas of work or client project. Often the work turns mundane and repetitive after a few years in the industry; but for a few cycles of promotions or move to a different client project and the cycle repeats. Given this understanding and observing the trend in the industry – the answer came to me that an MBA from a top tier B-school is important. Thus, the motivation to embark on an MBA was to be absorbed into decision-making roles that would help drive the organization forward and to be able to be at the helm of organization initiatives in corporate roles. Also, an MBA would provide a platform to work in roles where one can move into General management which would open the arena for a plethora of exciting roles in the corporate sector.

    Why an MBA is helpful and why is it worth taking a career break to pursue a full-time MBA

    Having made the decision to pursue an MBA – the next decision was in terms of a full time versus executive MBA . A full time MBA would mean having to quit the job and pursue the MBA full-time , whereas the Executive MBA could be pursued along side the job. For this I networked with friends and MBAs from different reputed institutions to understand the different aspects :

    • Why is a full time MBA advocated and why it would suit my aspirations?
    • What are the pros and cons of both – the full-time MBA and an Executive MBA?
    • What are the roles one can aspire for after a full-time MBA program?
    • How to ensure that the opportunity cost of losing a years compensation is made good ?
    • What is the ROI on the investment (opportunity cost of the 1 year, options post MBA etc.) ?

    After speaking to alumni of different renowned MBA programs (both Full time and Executive ), I decided to pursue an full time MBA keeping in mind that

    • Post the full-time program it would help me move towards the roles that I aspired for (E.g., General management, Consulting etc.)
    • The opportunity cost is met by/neutralized by the opportunities and roles one can be hired for post the full-time program (assured by the history of successful placements at SPJIMR post completion of the program)
    • The full-time program will give a strong foundation for future roles of running the different organisation functions

    What are the pros of pursuing an MBA from a renowned institution such as SPJIMR and the PGPM programme?

    After surveying several top MBA schools in India- including the IIMs, XLRI, MDI, FMS etc. – SPJIMR stood out in a unique way for many reasons and therefore I was very keen to have an admit from SPJIMR. SPJIMR stood out as the top of my wishlist of schools for the following reasons:

    • Highly acclaimed B-School in India and therefore accepted in the industry as a top notch BSchool.
    • Consistently ranked in the top B-Schools in India and the world ( #22 rank in QS Global MBA Ranking 2021, #4 with the close competition with IIMs in Business Today and India Today ranking 2020. Economic Times also ranks the institute at #13 place out of 50 best MBA Colleges in India.)
    • Excellent placements with all the top names in the industry recruiting from SPJIMR across the diverse specializations like Finance , Marketing etc.
    • Excellent action oriented pedagogy with international immersion and Industry engagements

    How SPJIMR helped carve out a successful career path post my MBA ?

    SPJIMR was a great platform for elevating my career to the next level. The PGPM programme at SPJIMR helped me to transition from technical roles into a Consulting path post my programme. Thereafter I pivoted into Product and Programme management roles and therefore have benefited deeply from the programme and how it helped me gain the general management and business perspective to move towards roles which are pivotal for an organization. The faculty of the programme provided an enriching learning experience during the programme and laid a foundation for an excellent understanding of the concepts of general management, finance, marketing etc. to name a few and therefore strong basis for a successful general management career thereafter. Also, the credentials of the school hold universal acclaim and therefore set the stage for me to be absorbed into and excel at my management career

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  • How the one-year MBA at SPJIMR accelerated my career?

    Should I take a break and pursue an MBA after working for five years? What does a typical day in an MBA programme look like? What sort of a career acceleration can I expect after an MBA? To answer these questions and many more like these, we reached out to alumni from the one-year programme at SPJIMR to share their experiences.

    Three alumni from different walks of life have shared their remarkable and inspiring stories of career transitions with us. Know how their career journeys unfold with these stories, each unique and relevant.

    Anshul Jain was juggling between a job and being an entrepreneur for over five years. He enrolled with the PGPM at SPJIMR and used the learnings gained in the classroom to develop structured management, leadership and critical problem-solving skills. Anshul Jain currently works with Accenture Technology Consulting as a Technology Consultant.

    Nikunj Jain came from the world of creativity, working on automotive styling. He however felt the need to develop decision-making skills to bring his vision for tomorrow to reality. Enrolling with the PGPM programme helped him develop a problem-solving mindset to face challenges across various functions. Nikunj Jain currently works with Mahindra Rise as the Innovation Manager.

    Dhruv Kumar was looking at professional growth while working at MSIL. He wanted to broaden his learning and also explore new opportunities. He found all this and more at the PGPM programme at SPJIMR. Dhruv Kumar currently works with Myntra as the Head Marketplace & Omni Business and Operations.

    SPJIMR’s PGPM was a Career Altering Journey: Anshul Jain

    After having to juggle between a job and an entrepreneurial role for over five years, I started feeling something was amiss. I felt that structured management, leadership, and critical problem-solving skills could propel me to be a better manager and an even better leader. In my search for one-year MBA programmes in India, I came across the Post Graduate Programme in Management (PGPM) at SPJIMR. Pre-admission interactions with current students, faculty members and alumni made me apply, and eventually, I was selected for the programme.

    The Class had individuals coming from diverse industry backgrounds, each carrying a unique skillset. Every day in the classroom was a revelation and learning, far different from what I had experienced in my engineering days and subsequent professional career.

    Every student in my class was encouraged to speak up and contribute to the learning environment. The focus was not on rote learning, rather it was on leveraging skills that our professional experiences brought to the class. Group assignments and projects across courses, simulated the environment of working in a team set up in a corporate job or business and also fostered a habit of rigour in research.

    The academic rigour along with individualised career guidance and support ensured that I was fully prepared on the day of placements.

    PGPM Helped my Creative Side Don a Corporate Suit: Nikunj Jain

    Prior to pursuing my MBA, I worked in the creative world of automotive styling, a career path that involved imagining the world of the future. However, bringing the vision of tomorrow to reality required a deep understanding on how business decisions are made. This analysis of the decision matrix led me to PGPM, the 15 months full-time management programme at SPJIMR.

    Different elements of PGPM helped me develop multiple skillsets. For instance Design Thinking (DT) taught me a holistic way of ideation, Personal Growth lab (PG lab) taught me introspection and self improvement, case studies helped me develop critical thinking or a diverse classroom that fostered peer-to-peer learning.

    The 3 key takeaways for me from the programme were: a) balancing different thinking hats we wear in the real world b) analyzing the market and crafting possible best win strategies for different situations and c) transforming organisations into customer-centric business

    The rigour and intensity of the programme has trained me to think on my feet; find my way through chaos and be able to apply the lessons learnt to solve complex management challenge for a company. Today, in my role as an Innovation Manager at Mahindra Group, I am able to apply this problem-solving mindset to challenges across various functions; Strategy, Marketing, Business Development, Innovation etc.

    PGPM at SPJIMR Prepared Me For The World: Dhruv Kumar

    The PGPM led to a hockey stick growth curve in my career. I wanted to do an MBA after 5 years of professional life for three things: Professional growth, broadening my knowledge of management and exploring new opportunities in my professional life.

    This course provided a paradigm shift in my understanding of management, networking opportunities and strengthened me as a professional. During the course I could relate to the situations that we faced at our workplace which would not have been possible without previous work experience.

    Personally for me, interactions with various leaders that came to the campus have helped immensely in shaping my thought process and looking beyond what I was doing previously. Their stories have inspired and taught me the importance of networking as a key to building confidence and long-term relationships in the industry. For me this course opened up various opportunities which otherwise would have been very difficult to come across.

    About SPJIMR’s PGPM

    S P Jain Institute of Management and Research (SPJIMR) is a constituent of the Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan and is ranked amongst the top 10 business schools in India. PGPM comprises 15-months of in-class learning followed by 3 months of Industry Immersion. This programme is ideal for participants who are looking for an Executive MBA. It is designed as a career accelerator that enables candidates with minimum 5 years of work experience and strong domain expertise, to move to expansive roles in general management. PGPM is AICTE approved, and accredited by AACSB and AMBA. The PGPM programme currently operates from Its Mumbai campus.

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  • Student Experiences: International Immersion during one year MBA

    “In an increasingly globalized business environment, it is imperative for any student graduating out of business schools to develop a greater appreciation of different cultures and international business practices. This is even more important for participants of one-year MBA who are likely to be exposed to international business as they directly move into middle management roles. To support this, a few leading business schools in India have tied up with international partner schools to give all their students an international exposure as part of their one year MBA programme.

    But how does this play out for the students? To understand this better, we reached out to graduates from the 15-month PGPM course at one of India’s leading business schools, S P Jain Institute of Management & Research (SPJIMR). Post Graduate Programme in Management (PGPM) is a one-year full-time management programme preceded by three months of online learning. It is an immersive, cross-disciplinary, hands-on experience designed for young professionals with a minimum of five years of work experience across all professional backgrounds seeking career acceleration.

    PGPM at SPJIMR has International Immersion as a mandatory module where the entire Class completes three credits of their specialization phase at top global b schools. Students from this programme currently go to leading partner schools in USA universities including Cornell University, University of Texas and Michigan State University.”

    Vishwajeet Sinha
    IM International Immersion
    McCombs School of Business, the University of Texas at Austin, USA
    PGPM Class of 2019

    “Our cohort headed to Eli Broad College of Business, Michigan State University, USA for a three-week international immersion, something that we were really looking forward to after our rigorous general management phase.

    During these three weeks, we covered a range of Operations and Supply Chain topics, with some of the best faculty for the specialization. The teaching format was an amazing combination of classroom sessions, supply chain simulations using cutting edge software and industry visits (including the visit to Ford Motor Company’s manufacturing facility in Detroit). This was instrumental in not only giving us a flavour of how we could manage complex supply chain organisations, but also helped us understand how geography and culture played a pivotal role in shaping a successful supply chain, in comparison to the practices in the US vis-à-vis those in India.

    In those three weeks we interacted and learnt about operations and supply chain from some of the most accomplished professors in the field and obtained three credit points as part of the course. But more importantly, what will remain for life are the strong bonds that we developed with our hosts, the alumni status from the Michigan State University and the camaraderie that we forged between ourselves.”

    Abhishek Chattopadhyay
    Operations and Supply Chain

    Eli Broad College of Business Michigan State University, USA
    PGPM Class of 2019

    “For every MBA aspirant, studying in an Ivey League college is a dream. My dream was fulfilled when we went to Johnson School of Management at Cornell University as a part of our International immersion. We were there for a total of three weeks, which included learning and applying the learnings through presentations every day. We covered courses such as FinTech, Fixed Income, Financial Statement Analysis, IPO, leverage buy out and Portfolio Optimization and Asset Management among others.

    As part of the learning we were taught with live case scenarios and also put these into practice with presentations on the same. This was a learning for us as we got to know where we were lacking and the points which we missed when analysing the cases. The key takeaway was a perspective on how an international b school works with its student, while on a personal front it was a memorable experience as it was my first stint in USA and at one of the best MBA schools.”

    Rohan Prabhudesai
    Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management,
    New York, USA PGPM Class of 2019

    “The Marketing cohort of SPJIMR’s PGPM programme, a group of 20 students from diverse backgrounds made their way to S C Johnson School of Business in Cornell University, an IVY League university, as part of their international immersion. An Ivy League education is a distant dream many MBA students harbour and the PGPM programme ensures that the students get a taste of the best there is to offer.

    The three-week immersion saw the students attend classes at not just the main campus in Ithaca (which is an experience worth cherishing), but also took us to the Big Apple, NYC, where we felt the real-world hustle which we would eventually become part of.

    The programme exposed us not only to theory, in the form of courses such as Analytical Tools For Marketing, and Behavioural Science for Marketing Decision Making, but also ensured we put these classroom lectures to use in the business arena. The courses were taught by seasoned professors of Cornell, sharing their wealth of experiences.

    Coming up with a practical business solution to Cornell’s in-house entrepreneurs challenged us to expand our horizons, with the batch divided into teams and competing to provide a feasible solution as part of the Entrepreneurial Marketing Practicum. It does make me feel proud to see that our solutions were implemented and small businesses are now thriving.

    The team also conducted an on-ground study in NYC (part of the Retail Brand Audit Practicum), interacting with locals and getting a feel of how it is to run a business there, assisting businesses which are close to a century old and adapting to modern conditions.”

    Taher Ahmed
    Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management,
    New York, USA PGPM Class of 2019

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