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Smart snippets into Managerial Roles and Career Goals from Prof.Siddharth Deshmukh,MICA

By : Guest on 19 September 2017 E-mail Comments     Print Print  Report Abuse

The Editorial Team of MBAclubindia had the opportunity to interact with Prof.Siddharth Deshmukh, Associate Dean at MICA, Ahmedabad. Here is a brief Q&A on "Career in the Management field" with him.


We see newer industries emerging, the burst in the Online Industry, changes in the Finance world, Recruiting becoming more complicated. Do you see newer roles and respective need for skill set in each of the domains- Marketing, Finance & HR?


Yes. Roles are shaping up differently now. Earlier, roles were connected to functions. Now they are connected to both function and the nature of the organisation. So while we have traditional marketing roles in brand management, marketing communications, and strategic marketing, we also have new roles: Site merchandising, Marketing evangelism, product management, community management and more. These new roles are because of the unique demands that new industries are facing and delivering towards.


Is there a shift towards trying newer roles among Management students? Or they rather stick to the conventional roles?


Management students are very curious about new age companies, since they represent new cultures and mindsets. That being said, there is still a significant chunk of students that want to stick to conventional companies. About roles- management students do want to be at the very latest edge of thinking- and want this to be part of their role in the company, whether their company is "new age" or conventional.


How can MBA students prepare themselves for newer roles?


1. Explore during their summer training period- understand what the world wants
2. Connect with professors working closely with industry projects
3. Make the maximum use of visiting faculty (both from a networking and knowledge perspective)
4. Be very informed about the subject that you are learning in the classroom- which means that you would also challenge the professor to reach a new level of discourse
5. Be industry ready through competitions, projects, and assignments. Treat each assignment as if it will lead to a new roles


Climbing the Career Ladder Vs Experimenting - what is your take?


This depends upon what you are good at. You should always play to your strengths. The new definition of a good job is one that prepares you well for the next one. If you can achieve it within an organization you like to work in, culture-wise- nothing like it. Else, experiment: but only after you have truly learnt what you need to in your current job. And finally, remember: A lot of CEO's are "company men" - people who have spent a huge amount of time in one single company.



Does the Mid-tier Workforce also need to evolve? What are the changing expectations of Corporate / HR from the Mid level employees?


Mid-Tier workforce has always needed to evolve, like the rest of us, but has been able to avoid this so far. Now, mid-tier managers realise that they just can't- people look for what I call "relative value" all the time, and mid-tiered employees have to take up a self-driven initiative to evolve to provide more value, relatively speaking, than someone who is lower down the pecking order.


Mid-Tier workforce also sorely needs leadership and communications training, as well as being trained to have the right mindset for strategy development and execution. These inputs keep changing rapidly in today's age and no one actively tells the managers this. Intelligent companies do invest in mid tier development programs; and are nowadays hands on partners with educational institutes in crafting these.


Preparing for job interviews & Career related


Technical Skills are more important fro your first job- what is your take on it?

Technical skills are a hygiene factor. You need these and dynamic leadership abilities.


Now, what are your golden tips on how to prepare for Job Interviews?


1. Talk to someone who works in the company, especially if they also report to the same boss/in the same team.
2. Deeply understand what the role is about (going beyond the stuff written on the website)
3. Ask yourself how you would do a role similar to the one offered by the company's competitor.
4. Ask yourself what value you can uniquely add. Ask yourself till you truly have an original answer.
5. Be honest with yourself: does the job connect with your strengths? If yes, how so?
6. Be effective in your body language- practice in front of a friend or a mirror. Listen to your recorded voice.


Your first job is never the best one! How should Management students have a bigger vision and chart out their career goals?


I think charting a career goal and having a vision is easier said than done, especially when you are younger. What I have found more effective is for students to use their first job to identify the sweet spot- the combination of what they are good at and what is appreciated by the workplace. Secondly, what truly excites them. Most of us are enamored by the results- a great pay check, glamorous titles etc- but we forget that 90% of the time it is about the journey. You have to enjoy three things: what you do; your boss and team's work style, and the overall work culture of the company. If this is achieved sooner rather than later- your career path takes care of itself, as long as you keep on learning.



Siddharth Deshmukh
Associate Dean - Industry & Alumni Partnerships, Associate Professor and Area Leader – Digital Platform & Strategies
Academic Area: Digital Communication Management


Siddharth graduated as a "first MICAn" in 1996 (first batch of MICA's two-year flagship PGDM) and returns back to his Alma Mater in a new capacity. Siddharth will lead MICA's foray into the digitally enabled world – through the 'Digital Platform and Strategies' Area.


Siddharth has been teaching at MICA for last three years in his capacity of an adjunct faculty. He co-created MICA's Digital Communication Management (DCM) Specialization along with other MICA faculty. He has mentored over 50 students to convert their ideas into prototypes and potential ventures (this is a six-month project for MICA's second year PGDM students in lieu of dissertation). He also teaches foundation courses in Digital Transformational Frameworks and User Experience Design. Besides these, Siddharth has taught various other digital and non-digital courses across institutes.


Siddharth's first two jobs were with Sony Entertainment Television and AT&T (before it became Idea Cellular). He has, since that time, been an entrepreneur and digital venture/product development evangelist for over a decade – with his earlier UK based company, Cohezia. He remains on Cohezia's Advisory Board and the various ventures it develops and grows.


Besides teaching, Siddharth's mandate is to connect and build the MICA brand with industry, alumni, students and other stakeholder partnerships. He will be the in-charge of Marketing, Alumni Relations, Placements and MDP functions at MICA.

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