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Business Case Studies – An Effective Teaching Tool

Tell me and I forget.

Teach me and I remember.

Involve me and I Learn.

These lines by Benjamin Franklin have rightly pointed out the gap in our education system. The traditional model of teaching i.e. lecturing would only help students to remember the concepts that have been discussed in class. The effectiveness of the learning process exists only when the students are fully engrossed in the subject. With the availability of electronic gadgets and the internet, the attention span of students has been reducing day by day. In such a scenario, an effective teaching tool that can be used for the business management students is Case-Based Teaching. The concept of case-based teaching is not only found in the management subjects but also found in courses like law, medicine, science, etc. The idea is to make the students understand a real-world problem that needs to be solved with the application of the concepts that the student has learned in the class.

Benefits of Case-based Teaching:

According to Professor Chris Ronald Christensen of Harvard Business School, the case-based teaching classes unfold without a detailed script. This is because the case is relatively unknown to the student, and the discussion that may take place in the class in the context of the case is unknown to the teacher. Many experienced faculty members say that the same case study brings out different learning for the students each time it is discussed with a batch of students. The classroom becomes an open platform for discussion that helps each student to come up with their idea and understanding of the case.

Efforts required in Case-based teaching:

Many faculty members have been using case-based teaching as a part of their teaching pedagogy. This is also practiced in many leading universities like Oxford, Stanford, and Cambridge, etc. The faculty in these institutes believe that the core concept of the case study as well as the course content has to be discussed simultaneously. This requires rigorous preparation on behalf of the faculty. The challenge lies in the ability of the faculty to make the students connect the theory with the practical case study and create ‘teachable moments’ in the process. These teachable moments arise from the classroom discussions and it is the responsibility of the faculty to guide the students through the discussion as well as give the discussion a desired direction. Thus, case-based teaching is a way of discovering the concept in a new manner. It requires the faculty to learn the art of balancing the discussion, planning the direction and also being versatile with strong and powerful storytelling skills.

Teaching cases online:

The current pandemic has created a new normal which includes online teaching. Teachers of all age groups, across the world, had to switch quickly to the online mode of teaching. This was not an easy task to do but then the change was quickly adapted to by faculty members so that the on-going semester could be completed successfully. In this context, the task of case-based teaching became more challenging. One of the major hurdles that the faculty faces while teaching through cases is that not all students read the whole case study and not all students read the case study before they attend the class. This became an even bigger issue to address when the classes shifted online.

To address this issue, the faculty of IILM had to be more proactive and plan the session in small segments. The cases that were taken up for discussion had to be smaller and crisper. Short case-lets are best suited for online case discussions. The questions had to be deep. Taking the advantage of technology, the students were made to discuss among themselves in small groups i.e. break-out groups where the faculty would visit just like it would be done in a physical classroom. The faculty also had to design more short exercises like polls and engage the students in a better manner. An effective way of doing this was by sharing reading material with the students before the class, beginning the class with a recent example, and sharing the faculty’s screen with students so that they can participate actively and share insights. This is followed by a quiz or a small test so that the students can assess their understanding. It can, therefore, be said that undoubtedly case-based teaching is one of the most effective ways of teaching but it will have to be modified with the change in times.

Importance of Case-based Teaching:

Case-based teaching and learning are important as pedagogy as it helps in developing the lifelong skills of critical thinking, collaboration i.e. working in groups, open inquiry, communicating ideas, and thoughts along with subject knowledge to arrive at a solution. Students also like this aspect and are engaged and interested in case discussions. It is a time-tested way of teaching that has been implemented successfully in various courses and institutions. It is an ideal win-win situation for both the faculty as well as the students. On one hand, the faculty can engage the students and also drive home the necessary concepts, the students can apply their knowledge and learn effectively. Thus, the time has come to implement the case-based teaching and learning pedagogy, with a little bit of revamping.

Do comment / write to me on how do you think Case-Based teaching will evolve in the blended learning format.

9 Tips to Write a Great Literature Review

Students from business schools and MBA aspirants around the world are keen to join the internship. Having an Internship is not enough, documentation of work is also necessary. Internship Research Report is a document that tells what you did during your internship and your productive approach towards the process. An intern needs to create the report carefully. The purpose of a literature review is to make the foundation of any report strong enough. You can define research as a criminal investigation, where you need to prove and justify your approach with tools of research.
A literature review is a process of appraising the studies conducted till date on a specific topic. Let us take an example of an intern working for the recruitment of an organization where their job is to analyze the recruitment process of an organization before hiring. Now during their analysis, it’s important for the intern to check how past researchers studied the recruitment process. What were the benefits of the processes they followed? Which strategy helped them understand the job requirements and better assessment of the candidates? This detailed review of the literature would help the intern to work on the current organizational recruitment process and forecast changes if necessary.

While reviewing various sources it is very important that students and researchers look into the following areas of the literature that they wish to review-

  1. Methodology – Awareness of methodology, and analysis instruments are necessary for the researcher to get familiar with the way research conducted by researchers. It further guides that research is going in the right direction or not.
  2. Research Problem – It gives clarity to the problem being address in the research. The Researcher can compare and contrast the findings of prior researches conducted.
  3. Research Gap – Research gap is the missing piece of the puzzle. It’s an area not yet explored by researchers. An example, the number of physically disabled candidates applying for IT jobs and the number of selection of such candidates. Systematic literature reviews help to identify the research gap. If you would be able to cover such a research gap your report will be worthy of the industry.
  4. Writer’s skills – A well-written literature review gives an insight into critical thinking and writing abilities to the audience.
  5. Limiting researcher’s biases – Human decisions are always affected by psychological biases. Prior research review direct researcher towards an unbiased view.

Writing a literature review is an art. There are certain guidelines that make Review of Literature stronger for any Research-

  1. Define The Problem Statement – It’s a herculean task to create the objectives or problem of research. Being a student of a business school, you can consult your mentor or project guide. It must not be too narrow or too wide as prior researches are available. A wide problem statement makes the research tuff to be justified and analyze.
  2. Locating the Literature Survey – Online resources like google scholar, Microsoft Academic, Base, Core, Semantic Scholar, ERIC database, and many more can help you to locate and review the related literature. A proper citation must be there in the report.
  3. Analysis of Literature – While analyzing literature you need to consider (a) the objective of the study, (b) statistical or analytical techniques used to analyse the literature, (c) result or conclusion of the research made.
  4. Structure a literature review – The chapter must start with an introduction that will define why the topic picked, trends of research. Contribution of researchers in the area, and in the end conclusion explains the gap which you wish to fill and further opportunities of the future studies in the area.

With all this extensive information on how to Review the Literature in Research Projects many educationists, students and professionals have benefitted. Giving it away forward we at IILM University help students at every step in their internships where they work on Research Projects and Proposals. This process might sound rigorous initially but once our students master the basics about Research it opens wide horizons of Creativity, growth & Innovation for them. It gives them a professional edge while being a student they get exposure to learning things the right way.
There is a lot that goes into Research. A true Researcher Lives his Research every moment. Note that during your placement interviews maximum questions are Project-based where your research skills and your dissertation report speak a lot about your analytical skills. Cracking your interviews with critical research gives you an edge over other students. Only a few Universities stress on a Strong Research Foundation and IILM being one benchmarks its Research Teachings on many platforms
Does it end here? No. We keep learning our entire life but to learn it is necessary to read and practice. Keep reading and exploring to uncover the deeper insights about the great findings and researches being done every moment.

For research related guidance, follow my blogs here or write to me at ashutosh.singh@iilmgsm.ac.in

Top 5 Skills You Develop While Studying BBA In Entrepreneurship

Starting your very own venture demands skills that are second to none. These distinctive skills are not acquired overnight and need to be nurtured. A BBA in Entrepreneurship provides students with the education needed to create and begin their own businesses. From learning about legal implications surrounding a business to effective operating strategies to scale-up, a BBA in Entrepreneurship gives you a jumpstart when you finally begin your journey. Below are the top skills you’ll be equipped with towards the end of the course from the undergraduate business school at IILM UBS, one of the top business schools in India:

Become A Leader:

The BBA in Entrepreneurship is a very hands-on program where students will be expected to work in numerous projects and case studies in groups. This enables the development of leadership skills and specialized competencies required to lead a new business, scale-up and adapt to changing environments.

Develop An Entrepreneurial Mindset:

Learn how to apply new ideas, methods, and perspectives to businesses and projects.

The program helps students gain confidence and certainty in their business idea and apply it in the real world with the structures and systems learned at the b-school.

Embrace Innovation:

Furthermore, the program also enables students to develop skills in innovation and creativity, helping them acquire the ability to understand consumer needs and demands and develop products and services accordingly. The ability to gauge untapped needs in the market is a skill that is developed over time through the detailed analysis of numerous case studies at the b-school.

Gain The Tools To Be Highly Competitive:

Courses in accounting, information technologies, and entrepreneurial finance help you develop invaluable hard skills, especially when procured from IILM UBS, which is amongst the best BBA colleges in India. Additionally, soft skills like leadership and people management will be obtained through group projects, giving you a firm foundation to start your own business.

Develop A Global Network:

Networking skills are crucial in the business environment. The ability to make valuable contacts, maintain contacts and know when to use them is important in the real world. Earn a BBA in Entrepreneurship from IILM UBS and take advantage of the professional relationships and connections in made at the b-school.

After the completion of the course, students will be empowered with the tools to fashion new products or services and oversee developments for existing companies the world over. Not only that, they’ll be able to make valuable contacts, further develop their skills into core competencies and deal with the pressures of a big corporate job or their own business efficiently.

How IILM UBS is fostering a Mindset of Entrepreneurial Thinking & Creativity

Entrepreneurial thinking refers to one’s ability to see the world differently and find innovative solutions to a given problem. This is a pre-requisite in the fast-paced business world of today. From budding family business owners to those looking to fuel a startup vision, tomorrow’s businessmen and women must possess the skills required to identify market opportunities and find creative ways to leverage these opportunities.

With a BBA in entrepreneurship, you’ll be exposed to a myriad of experiences that’ll help you develop the skills required to start and manage a business. You will have the chance to explore new learning opportunities, develop your business strengths and overcome your weaknesses. Given the wide variety of responsibilities connected with running a business, the BBA curriculum focuses on holistic learning – from marketing and innovation studies to technical business processes. The end goal is to shape well-rounded entrepreneurs capable of managing and scaling successful businesses.

The central benefit of pursuing an entrepreneurship course at one of the top business schools in India is that you will be equipped with a host of promising career opportunities, including consulting, family business management, startups and corporate jobs. With training in entrepreneurial know-how, not only will you learn how to start a new business from scratch but you will also understand how to restructure, reorganize and expand an existing business. Additionally, greater creativity and problem-solving skills fostered at IILM UBS will give you that much needed push to fuel your startup dream. This is of special importance for students looking to find direction in terms of career goals. Student mentors play a critical role in helping you identify your core point of interest and assess its feasibility in the current market situation. Greater support is provided via Annual Entrepreneurship Conferences and the Entrepreneurship Development Center quarterly innovation weeks.

The 3-year BBA course is designed keeping in mind the special needs of budding business owners, with equal emphasis on imparting practical and theoretical knowledge. With extensive case studies, role-plays etc., you will undergo overall personality development and up-skilling preparing you for jobs in healthcare, retail, service industries, financial services, banking, startups as well as non-profit organisations.

Given the need of the hour, innovation is placed at a high pedestal in our institute. Not only does it create unmatched value for existing family businesses, it is also especially important for setting up a new venture and expanding it. Additionally, entrepreneurial thinking will allow you to stay ahead of others and maintain a leadership edge in the corporate world.

10 Lessons From My Time At IILM

It has been a long journey – from being accepted into one of the top business schools in India to taking flight into the world of corporate administration. My time at IILM, however, has been worth every moment.

Today as I sit down to compile the top 10 takeaways, the most important lessons I have garnered from my time at IILM, I realize that these are not merely components of entrepreneurship courses but are life lessons that I shall carry with me.

Follow your passion:

Leadership is the ability to share your vision, your enthusiasm for your team, guiding it to success. It is only when you are passionate about your own goals can you hope to inspire others; and only with this dedication to your dreams can you leave a lasting impact.

top business schools in India

People are precious:

 One of the greatest lessons I learned at IILM is that it is people that we work for and work with. Placing the people ahead of our goals and challenges will make work a very fulfilling experience and the success worthwhile.

You can make a difference:

One single person, a lone voice, one revolutionary idea, a moment of brilliance – that’s all it takes to change the way things have always been. Being different is a result of courage, though. Cultivate that courage.

Step out of your comfort zone:

Staying with our feet firmly planted on the ground may sound practical but that is not the way to achieve any breakthroughs. Only aiming high, taking risks, pushing ourselves to go beyond your comfort zone, and trying creative solutions to challenges shall help us achieve the success we seek.

Great execution is as important as a great idea:

 Working on creative solutions, customizing products and processes, breakthrough ideas – none of them are worth much unless we dedicate ourselves to flawless execution. Focus and pay attention to details.

Seek diversity:

 Birds of a feather may flock together but it is only diversity that will provide a team, an organization with the skill sets that are required to get a rounded perspective of any situation and to work on an effective solution to any challenge.

Work on your empathy:

At business school, there is a great deal of emphasis on developing soft skills. At IILM, however, we learned to take people-centric management further by working on our empathy factor. This alone will give us a win-win outlook.

Never stop learning:

This in itself is the greatest learning. Make “Stay Foolish, Stay Hungry” your mantra but also stay open to learning that comes from unexpected quarters. Knowledge is not a function of qualification or even experience. Appreciate the critic and the skeptic for their ability to show you your weaknesses.

Take nothing for granted:

 Getting caught up in the dynamics of the corporate world, in our work, in designing and sustaining creative enterprises, we often overlook the need to be prepared for exigencies. Effective handling of crisis situations is just as important as administering business solutions.

Think big:

Through my time at IILM, my mentors and peers helped me look at the larger picture. Clichéd as it may sound, our business enterprises must fit into the global scheme of development. Thinking big alone will help us achieve phenomenal success.