It is not uncommon to hear this cynical remark from post graduate students in business schools - “Those who can, do. Those who cannot, teach.” Well, the days of classroom teaching are numbered. Teaching has been taking back seat by giving way for classroom learning. Learning happens when the facilitator and learner accept each others as equals and there is no feeling of superiority attached to the position of a teacher. This is precisely the reason why management education is undergoing a sea change with respect to pedagogy of the courses taught and nature of examinations conducted.
One of the essential changes instituted by business schools over the last few years is the involvement of outside experts in enriching the classroom experience. Courses are designed in consultation with industry experts and sometimes jointly taught by professors and corporate leaders. The evaluations of assignments for such courses are very unique. Learners have reported high degree of satisfaction in pursuing such jointly run courses. The degree of engagement and quantum of learning is increasingly in the favor of this practice.
Entrepreneurship education is becoming an integral part of management education in India. Several top B-schools have embarked on the journey of making entrepreneurship as a part of their compulsory core curriculum. Who better than an entrepreneur can share the pros and cons, ifs and buts and the ups and downs of exercising his/her option to startup. Here are 6 reasons to welcome a doer to share his views about running a startup as a guest lecturer.
Seeing is believing
For graduate students the idea of taking a huge career risk can be intimidating. Most students like to seek a well paying campus job and avoid complexities of dislodgement against their pre-planned goals. But helping them to interact with someone who has done it, at some stage in his/her career, makes them believe the idea of risk taking for new venture creation.
Winning is not always true
Most, if not all, case studies and textbook theories are centered on concepts of successful turnaround strategies. But in real life more entrepreneurs find their fingers burnt than the ones who manage to attain fast-track growth and success. Helping the students to meet people who have suffered failures can train them to overcome adversities.
There is no one right answer
Meeting different entrepreneurs is like seeing your business plan through the eyes of different experimenters. Every time students interact with venture creators they might get a fresh perspective of looking at their idea. It may not only be rewarding in terms of new information but also at times shocking considering some sincere feedback from them about lack of strength in their business idea.
Networking with like minded people
Entrepreneurs are truly friendly people. They like to network and share their thoughts. They believe in spreading awareness and encouraging action. While interacting with the class, startup founders go out of the way for motivating students. They are open to connecting young graduates to other likeminded people, venture capitalists and business leaders. They love visiting campuses as it expands their feeling of being a part of growing eco-system.
In India we have a long way to go before we create the next Stanford or MIT of our own. But these little steps can soon become giant strides in taking us there. So, next time you are invited to be on campus, just do it. You might end-up shaping the dreams of yet another winning startup.