Tuesday, September 04, 2007

What to do after MBA?

I went to a MBA college in Delhi last month for a talk on my book " The five great myths of career building", published by Macmillan.

Most of the student's questions were about 'which job to take' after passing or what branch to specialise after the first year'.

This question is like trying to choose a chocolate to eat 'without tasting the chocolate'. Students neither have enough information about themselves nor have enough information about the jobs and the market to make the right choices. Static data about the latter can at least be collected, such as the difference between marketing job and sales job, or a difference between working for a share broking firm and a bank.

But very often this data is more confusing than revealing. For instance, one of the student ( let us call him Ashank) wanted to chose between two jobs: pre-sales job in a telecom division of a company visavis a sales job in a government division of the same company. His friends and conventional views suggested that 'telecom' is the domain to work in.

We sat and understood what Ashank's background is, what he has done well in the past and what objectives he currently wants to achieve from his jobs ( to get enough self information about him). Next we understood the information about the choices: what a job of pre-sales comprise vis-a-vis sales job, what lock-in exists in the two jobs in case the objectives change, what difficulties will he encounter in either of the jobs. Only after going through the both aspects of choices : self information and information about jobs was he in a position to 'commit' to one path.

More often than not it is not the decision that matters; what matters is the ability to commit to a path. That ability to commit to a path depends on what each path entails, what each path offers and what each path does not offer. Commitment is above all the ability to stick to the 'path' irrespective of the difficulties one will encounter on that path.

It is the 'process' of making a decision that helps one in making the necessary commitment. The process does not help in taking a 'right' decision, because such decisions cannot be evaluated as right or wrong. Instead the process helps in surfacing the hidden 'biases', the underlying beliefs, and uncover the blocks in one's commitment. In other words, the quality of the decision is determined by the 'process' one goes through, and not by someone guiding this way or that way.

1 comment:

Hiren said...

Just as one has to play a sport to know whether one is comfortable at it or not, so it is with jobs. It is a process of trial and eroor.

According to the latest research in America, jobs should be based on deeply embedded life interest.