Management students learn from businesses born out of poverty
A group of executive students from organisations around the world recently visited disadvantaged Indian districts to learn how micro-entrepreneurship is helping transform emerging economies.
Witnessing the growth of entrepreneurship in underprivileged areas first-hand, students on the International Masters in Practicing Management (IMPM) visited Myrada, a non-profit organisation in Bangalore which helps people generate their own income.
The organisation sets up small enterprises through an imaginative range of projects, like helping women from remote villages make and sell their own incense sticks, to move them out of poverty. Students saw how a pilot programme developed into a movement for social empowerment – where women learn basic accounting and begin to organise themselves, loaning money to each other, to the point where they are able to borrow from banks and build their own sustainable businesses.
Jodi Grundyson from the US, IMPM student and Chief Strategy Officer at creative agency Knock Inc., says: “The culture has a strong sense of purpose, as well as fluidity and patience. It inspired me to understand the reasons behind what drives me personally, as well as professionally.”
IMPM students also visited first generation companies like pharmaceutical manufacturer Strides Arcolab and multinationals like Bosch, the engineering and electronics giant, to put their learning into action.
This third module of the IMPM is designed to expose students to other people’s worlds, bringing insight into their own and making them worldly, wiser and better leaders. The company visits run alongside lectures on topics such as sustainability, good governance and doing business across cultures at the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore.