Are you a Doer-Thinker-Doer?

Anita and cousin spar over the need or non-need of an MBA education. I listen to the story and think, 'they've missed the point'. I think the debate should be more about the need or non-need for classroom learning. Never mind what kind of degree that turns into. Sure, the MBA course has attracted more criticism than others over the fact that its the closest to be being industry relevant, and therefore its need to be application oriented.

Too many times I hear about how a classroom simulated MBA does not work in the real world. The ones who opine, let me safely guess, work in the industry and don't have an MBA. Or have an MBA but the lack the ability to either spot or try a conceptual application within the workplace.

Tell you what, you don't need to step into a classroom should you have what it takes to be part of an industrial activity that culminates in a product or service that consumers value. On the other hand, sans a classroom entry, should you find yourself at sea in this industrial value chain or are miserable at churning out the same cr*p every day, I'd say don't hesitate, step in as quickly as you can. Also remember no industrial chain operates in a static environment. Also, as much as the environment changes, so do competitors. This means other chains will come in, compete better, thus deliver greater value to consumers. This may be because they have within them competent intellectual capital. People who are what I call 'doer-thinker-doers'. Having such people means you foster what Noel Tichy calls 'Teaching Organisations', where everyone's a teacher-learner.

Simulated classroom environments turn a fertile breeding ground for varied perspectives. It allows for one to break out of what is otherwise 'boxed-in' thinking, because now you have others disagreeing and debating. For me, working long in an industry and not being exposed to a classroom environment is a no-no. In fact, I think its fatal, because it dries up the ability to think outside of what one's been doing, almost forever. Walk into organisations today and in all probability you will see staid thinking, repetitive working. You will see how personnel conspire to maintain status-quo. Radical thoughts, if presented wouldn't see the light of the day. Of course, there are firms out there that are different. But then they are few and far in between.

The ability to combine thinking that's classroom driven, and action that's industry driven is what will guarantee success for the future. Take CK Prahalad for instance. His advocating that companies look at the bottom of the pyramid consumers as being sufficient and feasible for a sustainable business model broke conventional thinking that believed they weren't moneyed enough to go after. Industry bigwigs soon saw the potential that BoP consumers held. They then tweaked their 4Ps to tap into this potential, with success.

Industrial applications are important. So is classroom thinking and debating. A combination is what produces and nurtures someone into a doer-thinker-doer. And that, I believe, is intellectual capital of the future.


I guess you are spot on. However, most of us out here do not seem to agree. Most of us, having started our internship are being bogged down by the feeling that it doesn't relate. I differ in opinion.
Ray Titus said…

Why am I not surprised?

Its the 'thinking' ones who'll spot the relevance of what was taught, at their work places....most like I said are 'beasts of burden' doers, not doer-thinker-doers!

And hey, Welcome to planet Earth.
As I said, I differ in opinion to my batchmates who do not relate..So...Thank you Sir...Now,I can call myself a 'thinking' student of yours. But then I wasn't able to figure out that last sentence 'Welcome to Planet Earth'...Why was that?
Ray Titus said…
'Cos its about a planet where its loaded heavily against the thinking ones, 1 to 9.

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