Stick to Smart Work for Success, says Amit Saha, Kotak Securities

AMIT KUMAR SAHA – HR VP – KOTAK SECURITIES –

Q) Sir, what inspires or keeps you motivated for work as you said from last 11 years you are working with Kotak?

A) I always believed in self-motivation. Now, you may say that Sir, you are using a very generic word. But no, you know why I believed in self-motivation? You will never get knocked down by any challenges that comes your way. So, my secret behind my rapport with Kotak for almost 11 years, is mainly the structure and another, the culture. We are very open as an organization and we have a lot of opportunities to develop our employees. I give you an example. After joining, I have done two certification programs, rather my organization has allowed me to do that. One is dale Carnegie training and the other is a program in strategic management. So, there are a lot of things that have happened for employee’s development.

Q) So, Sir you want to say that this helps to bring in creativity in your organization?

A) Yes, obviously. This openness and flexibility actually helps us to think of new things. We are not that type of organization where you only set a bunch of rules, hand it over and say that you have to follow them. There are always opportunities given to us that we as employees,should become innovative. So, this helps us to do a lot of new projects, which is being implemented in our organization. This also motivates us to stay in the organization.

Q) So, Sir according to you what is more important a good leader or a good boss?

A) Leader. See, I will give you a reason. The meaning of the word boss is very small. In broader context, a leader’s role is to lead. You know sets theorem. Yes, Boss is a subset of leader. I believe if you are a good leader you will automatically be a good boss.

Q) Sir, then what is more important hard work or smart work?

A) You see, obviously, its smart work. I am not saying that those who are hardworking they are not smart enough. But in today’s time, you have to do a lot of time management. Take less time and do lot of quality and correct work. That actually happens when you do smart work. See,I give you an example. Instead of writing everything you can do voice recording. That’s smart work. Nowadays, you must use the technology.

Q) So, Sir in the initial 2 years of your job what were the challenges that you faced?

A) When I joined UTI, the system was not there properly. We used to do a lot of manual work. The challenges that I faced during my initial days in UTI bank was, as a whole the organization was huge. I had to get acquainted with all my branch managers who were in my jurisdiction. That daily communication was an initial challenge. To get myself acquainted, gain trust and faith. I would rather like to tag it, as a hurdle.

Q) Sir, as a fresher we don’t have any work experience so what skills should we adopt to easily get acquainted with corporate world?

A) I have only 3 things to say:

1) You have to gain an experience and get feel and taste of the corporate field.

2) Attend lot of seminars, do projects.

3) Try to get some internship.

Q) Sir, one last question, what piece of advice would you like to give us?

A) Try to experience as much as possible. Get aware of the things happening around. Plan from right now in which industry you want to go. You better start planning immediately.

Through Thick and Thin, MBA has Stood the Test of Time

“We’re like The Apprentice, only nicer,” says Terry Kendrick, MBA director at Norwich Business School. During the course, students find themselves pitched in competition with each other in a way that resembles the popular television series: in teams, they create an event to make money for charity. “But we give them a couple of months to do it, rather than a day, and we’re not Sir Alan Sugar,” he says.

Typical of many courses, Norwich’s emphasises group work, collaboration and, crucially, experience- and skill-sharing – the hallmark of a good MBA. “Half of what students learn is from us, and half is from their fellow students,” says Kendrick. And that is what BIBS Kolkata being one of the best B. Schools in Kolkata prepares students for.

In the current economic climate, MBAs have never had it so good. Their appeal is counter-cyclical, with many applicants taking the chance to polish skills, build networks and look at alternative careers during hard times. “They give a chance to look at theory behind business practice in an atmosphere of calm and self-reflection,” says Paul Forrester, director of MBAs at the University of Birmingham. “You develop skills you might not have discovered.” Business schools across the country are reporting a rise in numbers of applicants for full-time courses, and a huge range are now on offer, both flexible and full time.

In essence, an MBA gives a solid grounding in general management, and is targeted at graduates with several years of management experience.

“You emerge with an appreciation of all angles of business,” says Kendrick. “You might spot if an accountant is pulling the wool over your eyes in a board meeting, identify a problem with a supply chain or recognise when a marketing department isn’t delivering.”

Graduates of MBAs also say one of the most useful elements is coming into contact with individuals destined for global managerial careers. “This ready-made network of influential contacts tends to outlast any of the knowledge gained,” says Anne-Marie Martin, director of the Careers Group at the University of London.

But be warned, says Jeanette Purcell, chief executive of the Association of MBAs (Amba), which accredits courses in the UK. With fees for the cheapest course starting at £10,000 – and exceeding £40,000 at the top end – MBAs are a significant investment; that’s before you’ve even accounted for costs such as loss of earnings, books and living expenses. Typically, people apply for three reasons, says Purcell. They might want to use redundancy money to retrain; they might want to secure their future in an uncertain climate; or they wish to switch industry or set up their own business. “All these reasons are valid, and the right course exists for each one,” she says.

While the reputed rise in salary is legendary, be realistic, says Amba. Graduates of MBAs immediately enjoy a salary 46 per cent higher, and 129 per cent higher three to five years after completing an MBA, according to Amba’s latest survey, and the average salary is £72,500.

But these figures include salaries of overseas students who, in relative terms, find better-paid work in the UK. If you aim to change industries, don’t expect a pay hike immediately, says Kendrick. “You’ll probably go in at the pay level of your previous job, and won’t reap the rewards until two or three years into it.”

Amid the wealth of courses, some digging will help turn up a course to fit your needs. While the content and framework of an MBA is standard among most courses, focus and methods of teaching can vary hugely. “Look at how the course is textured with guest speakers. Is it self-contained study, or practical group work?” says Kendrick. “Find out what industries and companies the business school has links with.”

Most MBAs offer specialist modules or a chance to diversify during the elective – usually a project lasting the final three months of the course. “These electives demonstrate where the focus is. Many are increasingly entrepreneurial; looking at small business and corporate responsibility,” says Purcell.

Some established MBAs – from London Business School, Cranfield or Warwick, for instance – continue to carry huge prestige. Many newer courses have added extras or specialisms in order to distinguish themselves. Norwich Business School, for instance, offers an MBA in strategic carbon management and an extra diploma in management consultancy.

This course paid off for Dr James Kazer, 35, who now works for the Carbon Trust. Formerly a software consultant in the automotive industry, he is responsible for maintaining standards of measuring the carbon footprint of goods and services, from a crisp packet to a financial product. “I could tell the [car] industry was a little shaky, but knew it wouldn’t be easy to get a job in a new sector. I’ve always been interested in conservation and the environment, and this job fits really well.

“It’s important to know the language, attitude and background of an industry – so you sound like you know what you’re talking about. The last six months of the MBA were really valuable – I don’t think I’d have got the job without it.”

Before committing to a course, visit the business school if possible, speak to former students, and attend some of the lectures, says Purcell. While full-time MBAs are in demand, some companies will sponsor employees to complete an MBA part time. “If it’s accredited, it will carry the same kudos,” says Purcell.

However, flexible study carries its own problems, with many students reporting the combined pressure of work and study is too extreme. MBAs are demanding, with conscientious students putting in 12-hour days, five to six days a week.

A degree and at least three years’ experience is a standard requirement for accredited MBAs, although some schools such as Birmingham ask for a minimum of five. Time in junior and small project management can be sufficient, if you can show you bring skills and knowledge to share with fellow students. The average age of MBA students is 32, though some may be in their forties or fifties. Some schools require a GMAT (graduate management admission test) or similar. Treat your interview as a two-way process; a chance to discover whether the course suits you. “This isn’t something to do if you’re just hiding from the recession,” says Purcell. “It’s potentially life-changing.”

Manzoor Hussain completed an MBA at the University of Birmingham in 2007. He now works as category and procurement change manager at Martin-Baker Aircraft Company Ltd.

“I’d been working at Ford and wanted to put academic rigour against some of the stuff I was learning. There were all sorts of business and management theories cascading around me, but they weren’t well implemented.

I got a comfortable feeling looking around Birmingham, and the level of detail of the course seemed right – broad but not too broad, and very strong on experience.

My interview investigated my experience [and] what I could add to classroom discussions. You need to be able to understand the context of the theories. At 37, I was one of the older students.

When I finished the course I was broke, and returned on a short contract to clear my debts with the first company I’d ever worked for. They offered me a job at the front end of developing procurement strategy. The MBA gave me leverage to get this; I could show I had potential.

I could think differently around key topics and share thoughts in a different way from the past. It’s given me a broad perspective; it’s incredibly useful. I can look at things more strategically and add to the day-to-day running. I don’t spout academic text.”

In Kolkata BIBS stands as one of the best B. Schools in Kolkata and provides education that is designed to make one the most valuable asset in any company’s workforce. So Be it hail or rain, the MBA will stand the test of time.

Become an Achiever in the Finance Industry: With BIBS PGPFM Program

How many of you are in love with numbers or solving critical calculations? Surely, there are many! Being a math lover, you may dream of becoming an engineer, professor or a scientist; but you can also consider setting your foot in the finance industry that is readily offering ample promising career prospects. Let’s get you informed how BIBS is preparing a thousand of future finance professionals through its especially designed MBA program.

What does BIBS Offer?

BIBS, a premier Business School in Kolkata offers the PGPFM + MBA program, made exclusively for all finance professional aspirants. This regular, full-time course has been prepared in collaboration with NSE Academy, a subsidiary of The National Stock Exchange, one of the largest exchanges in the world. This first of its program in West Bengal brings together a unique combination of renowned academicians and financial experts to help its students gain contemporary skills and the knowledge to capitalize on forthcoming opportunities in financial management.

How PGPFM + MBA Program Can Add Value to Your Financial Career?

The post graduate PGPFM program equips its students with comprehensive knowledge to meet the vibrant demands of the financial sector, both at the national and international level. The course is gaining huge popularity amongst students because –

  • It is the only program combining the strengths of NSE Academy, SEBI (Securities and Exchange board of India) and PwC for a guaranteed career in core finance with a Pan-Indian acceptance.
  • This program is backed by live Learning Opportunities. The industry faculty team at BIBS comprises of industry professionals.
  • Industry recommended certifications like NCFM (from NSE) and NISM (from SEBI) are provided which are compulsory to work in the best financial firms in India.
  • On completion students receive regular Full-Time degree affiliated to Vidyasagar University, a NAAC accredited, W.B. State Govt. University, recognized by UGC, Ministry of HRD of the Govt. of India.

Placement Opportunities: Strike a Golden Career

BIBS carries an outstanding track record of 100% placement year after year, not only in India, but abroad as well. The B-School’s tie-up with PwC has provided a number of successful students their final placement at the organization. Corporate giants like UAE Exchange – Dubai, PRAN – Oman, ITC, KPMG, Phillips, HUL, PepsiCo, Aditya Birla and many others regularly recruit at BIBS. In fact, more than 150 companies visit BIBS campus every year, for recruitment. So, go on, strike a golden career as a finance pro.

Learn to Face the Challenges of Professional Life Inspirational Talk with Mr. Soumen Ghosh of Apeejay Oxford Bookstores

People often say, real life learning comes from real life situations. And, it is as true with life as it is with education and career. BIBS, the premier B-School in Kolkata believes, none prepares a student better other than the experts from the industry itself. Here’s a motivational conversation, between one of our students, Abhishek Singh, MBA Batch of 2017-19 and Mr.  Soumen Ghosh, Assistant Manager of Apeejay Oxford Bookstores Private Ltd.

Mr. Ghosh visited BIBS campus and interacted with our students on 22nd July, 2017.

  1. Why success should not be measured only in terms of money?

Ans.   The parameter of success and the unit of measurement is not equal every time. For

example, M.S. Dhoni is a very successful captain for Indian Cricket Team and Anil Ambani is

a very successful businessman. They both are successful in their own field of work. However,

Anil Ambani has more wealth than Dhoni and Dhoni has more fans.

  1. How can the young professionals discover themselves in the chaos of responsibilities and challenges?

Ans.   Everyone has to take responsibility and face challenges in their life and a young

professional is not an exception. Life is the most efficient teacher for every human being and

therefore, one should not stress about problems and get prepared mentally and professionally to face all challenges of life. Yes, failures will come definitely but that’s a part of the journey. Don’t worry about the falls and start taking lessons from your mistakes because your mistakes will become your experience one day.

  1. How can we differentiate between a good boss and good leader?

Ans. Now, if you are talking about a leader like Mahatma Gandhi or Netaji Subhas Chandra

Bose, that is entirely something different, as they were from completely different league all together. But if you are talking about within a corporate organization, then I would say that only a Good Leader can be a Good Boss and visa-versa.  A Good Leader/Boss is the person who will be your friend, philosopher and guide and the same time should be a role model for you. A Good

Leader/Boss will always inspire you to be like him/her by his/her action.

  1. Sir, what would be your advice to aspiring managers like us?

Ans.

  • Be positive – It’ll keep your journey steady,
  • Always analyze – It’ll help you to be in check,
  • Learn new things – It’ll help you to keep on evolving.