An Unconventional Journey To An Unconventional B-School – SOIL – School Of Inspired Leadership

I always wanted to do MBA but was not sure when is the right time. Soon after my engineering, I started working with IBM as a SAP Consultant and started being comfortable in my job. A comfortable life becomes too boring and I started my quest to live my forgotten dream of doing post graduation in management. And now I had 3 years of work experience and I started collecting information about b-Schools, CAT/GMAT etc. It just started and in the midst of finding the right b-School, I had one thing clear in my mind which was I wish to go beyond the management concepts and in the quest of finding the right one, I came across SOIL through the network of my college seniors.

Then started, a series of long info sessions with various alumni of SOIL, visiting the campus and attending the webinars conducted by SOIL. As I wanted to be a part of something different which other b-Schools had to offer, I found SOIL to be the right fit. SOIL is co-created by 32 leading companies from across the industries and partner with SOIL to design its curriculum which is why SOIL’s curriculum is always in alignment with the trends followed by industry.

Another unique aspect which drew me closer was the Social Innovation Program (SIP) at SOIL which involves a team of students working closely with a non-profit organisation working towards community development. Every team chooses a project that they can contribute meaningfully to and these include building business plans for income generation activity, developing case studies as marketing collateral, innovative fund-raising initiatives amongst others. Today, more than ever before, the business community is increasingly focusing on the development sector and social inclusion. This makes it essential for any business leader to fully understand and appreciate the ground realities of the development sector. Without the full involvement of the future leaders, this development will remain one-sided, insufficient and incomplete. With this intent, the School of Inspired Leadership has incorporated the Social Innovation Program into its curriculum as an integral course.

Apart from this, culturally savvy leaders utilise mentoring as a strategy for generating success in challenging times. At SOIL, every student is assigned a leader from the corporate world as a mentor. This can be a very energising process, as the mentor helps the student, sometimes for the first time, work towards achieving their learning goals. In fact, the mentor-mentee relationship becomes so strong that it lasts a lifetime and is not just limited for that year.

The faculty is at the core of SOIL’s strength. An eclectic mix of internationally renowned faculty, experienced industry leaders and academicians help create a transformational learning experience for us that is contemporary and comprehensive. Above all, our faculty mentor and guide our students through their one-year programs at SOIL and very often post the completion of the program as well. It is no surprise then, that the students and alumni share an emotional bond with our faculty.

And as I started my journey which is now in the last few months and about to conclude, I would just say that this has been the best decision of my life. Time just flew by being involved in a number of things like study groups, case studies, assignments, presentations, clubs, committees, cultural events, Olympics, group discussions, interviews and just WHAT NOT! A demanding course with a plethora of subjects has not dampened our spirits but has led us wanting more. And it’s not just all about studying. It’s about a whole new experience of living and working together with no time to spare.

We learned to manage time, work in teams, the importance of collaborations, multitasking to count a few.

It just feels like yesterday when all of us came together for the orientation trying to know each other, breaking the ice and how the months have evolved us completely. At this point, we not only know each other but constantly work to improve each other and apply the best out of our learning concepts.

Alongside a tight schedule, we do find time to be a part of various events like celebrating Guru Purnima, Karma Kitchen, Soil Olympics and various other events.

Every subject is a completely new experience for us and the best part is our learnings which happen through groups, the way each one of us helps and maintain a healthy competition is one of the best ways to understand and deep dive and get the best out of it.

The program office keeps us on toes with a number of exams that come up each time a course if finished. It indeed is the best feeling, to witness our tremendous progression.

It is also rightly said, ‘When you love what you do, the work is no more work but a passion’ and here at SOIL, I see it happening right in front of eyes. The intense course structure is exhaustive but we are enjoying the learning and at the same time trying to practically imply all the classroom teachings in the real life scenario.

 

Click here to apply to SOIL – The School of Inspired Leadership.

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About the Author:

Monika Bhadauria, a student of Business Leadership Program at SOIL. She is an engineering graduate in Electronics and Communication.

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