I am an MBA student from one of the top five b-schools in India. I entered the institute with thousand dreams and million aspirations. However, it is not what it looks from outside. There is much more to the rosy picture painted outside.
1. Placement reports are inflated.
Yes, they are! The single most point of attraction for outsiders is the so-called placement reports. Claiming exorbitant salaries in lakhs of rupees as an average mean median package, innocent students are fooled. Apart from the reports which are verified by some external agencies, mostly all are inflated. The salary figures are quoted based on the industry trends, previous year’s figures and placement committee’s will! This is done in order to maintain college reputation. Next time you see such a report, read it with a pinch of salt!
2. So are the Salaries!
‘IIM student gets 1 crore package!’ Don’t let such news fool you. The package seems high either because it is an international offer where this amount is nothing but what any ordinary software engineer gets in India or it is a CTC which includes other perks such as ESOPS, one-time joining bonus and truckloads of other variable components. Such offers are rare in the campus (1 or 2 students gets it out of a batch of 400 people). The otherwise mountainous looking salaries are also bloated with these perks. Ask an MBA graduate his monthly in-hand salary of two consecutive months and you will get the picture.
3. Not everyone gets placed.
100% placements is a myth. ‘Entire batch placed in 3 days’, such news circulated by these institutes are mostly a hoax. It is impossible for a batch of 400 students in an IIM to get placed in 3 days. The placements happen in 3 clusters. First is a diamond cluster: The highest paying top notch consulting firms and international offers comes in it. They recruit just 1% of the batch. Then comes the gold cluster where 20% of the batch is placed. These include investment banks, FMCG firms, big conglomerates etc. Next is the silver cluster which takes 30% of the batch. It includes low paying firms. The bronze cluster is the final one where 40% of the batch is pushed to take up jobs. The roles offered here have no relevance to the MBA degree and let’s not talk about the package. A bank PO earns more than these people. The remaining students are asked to opt out of the placement process! Yes, the placement committee asks the students to find a job on their own from outside in order to maintain the 100% mark. The number of these students is masked under the garb of Entrepreneurship or any other creativity the placement committee can think of in the placement report.
4. Placement committees literally rule the institutes.
Popularly known as the ‘placecomm’, these people literally rule the 2 years of MBA. The perks of their job include violent shouting, penalising the batch-mates on personal whims, attendance concessions from all the guest lectures on campus, free food, and database of all the corporate competition PPTs (which they cleverly use to win more competitions!). But the most important one is their ability to rig the placement process and get the best of the best placements for themselves. Yes, they slog hard during the placement season but it is nothing compared to these perks. Nobody questions them. The professors are least bothered about this. Only the placement coordinator professor is somewhat concerned. But he is also interested in showing the 100% placement achieving more than anything else.
5. MBA is much more than academics.
“I write the best code and hence I will get the best placements”, this engineering mentality doesn’t work in IIMs. I have seen Gold Medalists and course toppers getting placed in average companies. It is not that they don’t have the knowledge but only a CGPA of 10 can’t help you crack that coveted GD or interview. Companies want good communicators. The only thing certain during b-schools placements is uncertainty.
This article is not written by a delusional student who is miffed with the process. Rather it is written from a rational, logical and objective point of view. This is the situation in country’s top 10 b-schools. You can imagine the scenario in new/ baby IIMs as well as other tier two b-schools. Take this article as a guide before you apply for that 20 lakh ‘education loan’ to pay the IIMs fees whose EMIs will be paid by you for the next 20 years of your life!