The world of business has a profound impact on the state of the planet. If our work places create meaning, enthusiasm and character, the communities we shape become inspiring.
Business Schools produce the future leader of workplaces. The way they provide education is therefore extremely important. If they develop leaders with whole systems thinking, character and the enthusiasm to make a real difference.
SOIL was created with this Vision. It is often recognized as “game changer” in higher education by Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM) & at various other Platforms.
SOIL was featured in an exclusive documentary on ET NOW.
Story of SOIL
SOIL is an experiment in “Higher Education”. It aims to build leaders with “Character, Competence and enthusiasm” who enable organizations to take responsibility for the way we live now.
Most of the problems that the world faces today require “Inspired Leadership” rather than “good old management”. We cannot “manage” terrorism, climate change, corruption, loss of community and other such global challenges. Instead we need to create a sense of shared vision, purpose, responsibility, synergy and corrected action as one global community. This is the role of leaders who are truly “aware”, deeply “care” and “dare” to make a difference.
In SOIL, we have started a new conversation on “Inspired Leadership”. We believe that “Character” can be built at any age. We refuse to take the defeatist view that all values are shaped in our early childhood and cannot be changed once our minds our “set” in our twenties. Instead we believe in the power of vision led transformation that can be brought about at any age.
Values are shaped by rituals, symbols and stories. The five values that define character in our eyes are;
Mindfulness is developed at SOIL through education in “Wellness” that covers Yoga and meditation. It is practiced every morning through the ritual of the “morning circle” in which all students , faculty and staff in a circle, hold hands and then recite a prayer from any denomination and observe silence for ashort while.
Ethics is the difference between our right to do things and the right things to do in a context. Ethics is imbibed in SOIL through all that we do in SOIL in the way we live, lead, manage and practice. Our accounts and MIS are “transparent”, we have a “zero tolerance “policy for unethical behavior, we stand up and fight any pressure from authorities to “bribe” to get our rightful work done etc.
Compassion is about the capacity to feel for others and take action to make others less pained and happier. Compassion is developed in SOIL through our “Social Innovation Program” which entails every student working with a NGO, one day a week to focus on a real life social cause that enables our world to become better.
It is also reinforced through a week long learning journey to Chinmaya Mission’s Tapovan Ashram at Sidhbari in the Himalayas. The students visit the villages to learn and feel first hand, the amazing work done by the Chinmaya organization of Rural Development (CORD) in transforming the lives of over 700villages in the Kangra District of Himachal Pradesh.
Diversity is about valuing and leveraging the uniqueness o each person. It is practiced by profiling of each student in terms of multiple intelligences like IQ, EQ, creativity etc and encouraging students to work in teams by leveraging each others’ uniqueness. It is reinforced by inviting visiting faculty from all over the world and by student exchange programs with other schools in different parts of the world.
Enthusiasm is developed through courses on “Self Leadership” which enable students to define their purpose/vision and values and identify their gifts and learn to leverage their gifts towards their “calling”. It is reinforced throughout the year through regular dialogue with internal and external mentors. SOIL is fortunate to have over 100 senior leaders from Industry who act as mentors to our students through monthly 1:1 sessions.
Students also work on their “Individual Learning Plan” right through the year. SOL believes that if each person discovers her/his purpose, “knows” his/her gifts and learns to leverage his/her positives towards what matters to each person then the person always does his/her best work and is joyful andenthusiastic.
This comprehensive approach to development helps students not just to learn the basics of management subjects like Finance, Marketing, operations, Strategy, HR and IT but use this conceptual knowledge in ways that creates the highest impact and positive energy.
SOIL runs a very intense one year Program that has 40% emphasis on character building, 40% on competitive development and 20% on generating and sustaining enthusiasm – it is therefore the right combination of “Being “,”Knowing” and “Doing” – the three ingredients of transformational learning.
We are blessed to receive the support of a large number of conscious businesses, NGO’s and educators in this bold new thinking.