What maketh a Manager?
The question is, is this the kind of managerial talent that must be nurtured within business schools or should the mix be more eclectic with backgrounds in studies that straddle a wide spectrum?
Note Sir Ken Robinson talking about the education system; 'But something strikes you when you move to America and when you travel round the world; every education system on earth has the same hierarchy of subjects, everyone. It doesn’t matter where you go. You think it would be otherwise, but it isn’t. At the top are Mathematics and Languages, then the Humanities, and at the bottom are the Arts, everywhere on earth. And in pretty much every system too. There’s a hierarchy within the Arts; Art and Music are normally given a higher status in schools than Drama and Dance. There isn’t an education system on the planet that teaches Dance everyday to children the way we teach them Mathematics. Why? Why not? I think this is rather important. I think Maths is very important, but so is dance. Children dance all the time if they are allowed to, will do. We all have bodies, don’t we? Did I miss a meeting? Truthfully what happens is as children grow up we start to educate them progressively from the waist up and then we focus on their heads and slightly to one side.....
We need to radically rethink our view of intelligence. We know three things about intelligence, one it is diverse; we think about the world in all the ways that we experience it. We think visually, we think in sound, we think kinaesthetically, we think in abstract terms, we think in movement. Secondly intelligence is dynamic. If you look at the interactions of a human brain, as we heard yesterday from a number of presentations, intelligence is wonderfully interactive. The brain isn’t divided into compartments, in fact, creativity, which I define as the process of having original ideas that have value, more often than not, comes about through the interaction of different disciplinary ways of seeing things...
And the third thing about intelligence is, it’s distinct. I’m doing a new book at the moment called, Epiphany, which is based on a series of interviews with people about how they discovered their talent. I’m fascinated about how people got to be there...'
Its a pity that Indian Business schools are prejudiced in a manner where its a taken that engineers are better suited to turn managers. Its time the entry requirements into these schools are radically altered to accommodate those who may not be great at number crunching, but have the ability to move to music like they are possessed. Of course the latter again is no guarantee to a great manager, but the least it will do is throw up classroom environments that accomodate diversity, with a slew of thoughts that will surely be a harbinger to original ideas. And those ideas can then translate into innovative consumer solutions.
After all, isn't business finally about that, product and services that are solutions to consumer needs?