Forbes ranks S P Jain Global at #12 among world’s top international MBAs

Singapore, September 23, 2019: S P Jain Global’s flagship Global MBA program climbed four places to be ranked #12 in the world in Forbes’ latest ranking of the world’s top 1-year international MBA programs, ahead of Hong Kong University, HEC Montreal, Erasmus (Rotterdam), Cass and Hult.

Forbes’ biennial ranking of the world’s best 1-year and 2-year international MBA programs is based solely on the return on investment achieved by business school graduates and was released in September 2019. This year, the Forbes ranking compared the earnings of the Class of 2014 in their first five years post-MBA. S P Jain’s Class of 2014 reported a net gain of USD 61,300, even higher than the 2-year MBA programs of NYU, USC, Georgia Tech, UNSW Business School, Schulich School of Business, Penn State and other top international business schools.

“We are thrilled to have climbed in the Forbes MBA rankings this year, especially as these rankings are student-focused. Since 2011, our Global MBA has consistently featured in top MBA rankings by the Financial Times, Forbes and The Economist. It is particularly thrilling to see that S P Jain Global is also now more highly ranked than much more established 1-year and 2-year MBA programs!,” shared Nitish Jain, President of S P Jain Global.

“We owe much of this success to our unique tri-city model that has resulted in more emotionally intelligent and globally-minded graduates who have gone on to do very well in their careers, both in India and outside.” The 15-year-old School presently boasts of a 7000+ alumni community that is spread across 30 countries, including Singapore, Australia, Chinna, Denmark, France, Georgia, Germany, Hong Kong, Malaysia, New Zealand, Spain, Switzerland, UAE, UK and the US.

Dr. Balakrishna Grandhi, Dean of the program said, “When it comes to global jobs, our graduates have the distinct advantage of having lived and studied in three of the world’s top business cities. They have first-hand knowledge of how to operate in a global business environment – a skill that is much valued by recruiters. They undertake projects with top companies, interact with business leaders and thinkers, go on cultural tours and develop important global skills.”

“This is a proud day for us graduates from the Class of 2014! The fact that the program continues to gain international recognition and a steady rise in prestigious MBA rankings, like Forbes, is evidence that the unique learning ecosystem that the School provides, thanks to its global model, is both relevant and impactful. The Global MBA has been a stepping stone to new careers, new prospects, greater responsibilities, leadership roles and so much more for many, like me, and this latest ranking is a testimony to that,” shared Shivani Naik (Global MBA 2014) who is presently working at Reliance Industries Limited.

The Forbes MBA rankings, along with Financial Times and The Economist, are among the most prestigious MBA rankings in the world, and SP Jain Global is the youngest business school in the world to get all three.

S P Jain School of Global Management clinch Flywire Challenge

From left to right: Mr Andrew Ong (Regional Managing Director at Flywire); Sachin Sanjeev, Akshay Gupta,  Vinayak RD (winners from SP Jain); Dr. Grandhi (Dean at SP Jain); Mr Bruce Gosper (Australian High Commissioner); and Dr. John Fong (CEO & Head of Campus at SP Jain)

Singapore, 23 Aug 2018 – Three students pursuing the GMBA (IT Specialisation) program at the S P Jain School of Global Management (SP Jain) have won the Flywire Challenge conducted on August 17, 2018.

Organized by Flywire and SP Jain, the Flywire Challenge seeks to demonstrate how the collaboration between FinTech and educational institutions can power a new generation of entrepreneurs.

Held at SP Jain’s Singapore campus, the awards ceremony was graced by the Australian High Commissioner, His Excellency, Mr Bruce Gosper and Second Secretary, Ms Lauren Hernandez; along with some of the school’s closest partners from SAP and NTUC.

The challenge attracted over 20 entries from National University of Singapore (NUS), Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore University of Social Sciences (SUSS), Singapore Institute of Management (SIM), Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), and S P Jain School of Global Management. It was a proud moment for SP Jain as its GMBA May ‘18 students – Akshay Gupta, Vinayak RD, and Sachin Sanjeev – went onstage to receive the award.

Along with two other winners – Amanda Yang from NTU, and Nicole Ng from NUS – each winning entry received a cash prize of S$10,000, free working space, as well as mentorship for their start up idea.

Commenting on the win, Dr John Fong, CEO & Head of Campus at SP Jain, said: “The Flywire Challenge was an open competition in which we saw participation from many schools. We are delighted that our students have emerged winners – this is testament to the way we immerse our students in real world business cases and ensure critical thinking is embedded in their learning journey.”

Sharing on their idea, the winners from SP Jain remarked: “Our project is about automating the process of medical claims. By automating these usually-manual processes, we think it would help both patients and healthcare professionals tremendously. We had great support from our CEO, Dean, and everyone on the campus; so we can’t wait to start on the project with this cash prize.”

“We would also like to give special thanks to our professors; Dr Kumar, Prof SomaSekhar and Ms Pushpa; as well as our good friend Abhilash,” they concluded.

Developing a Professional Difference through a Global MBA program

Indonesian-born and Jakarta-based Gary Tejakusuma who holds an SP Jain Global Master of Business Administration (GMBA) degree, is weaving through the corporate structure confidently even though the disruptive environment keeps adding “unknown” uncertainties.

The more we learn, the more we don’t know,” writes Gary who continues schooling with the plan to take up Philosophy or another liberal education form to further understand the fundamental for Finance and Economics.

Gary, now deeply involved in the insurance business, is right.

The disruptive technology that is coming on to us, is a mega challenge especially for global executives such as Gary who makes critical decisions on or about people. In fact, business means a deeper relationship with people – or customers as many commercially define their market drivers, the consumers.

The key is being relevant to the real world as soon as possible yet not forgetting the new identity (credential) as an MBA. I call it a “Relevant MBA”, says Gary. Those who have never done an MBA would always correlate the degree with Capitalism or Commercialism.

In fact, the GMBA journey at SP Jain has changed my perspective about capitalism and money, says Gary, 32, and steadfast at building a career.

Other than that, the MBA had enacted self-enhancement, it also had accomplished self-transcendence.

Gary shares his GMBA-accomplished journey:

Q: What is your advice to MBA students on challenges ahead – disruptive technologies; fast-changing market trends, IoTs etc.?
Gary: There are three stages of every development that MBA students need to understand in the corporate or business life — INNOVATIVE, then be DISRUPTIVE, and end with being ADAPTIVE.

Learning to be adaptive is the most precious lesson we can get in an MBA degree for it looks from different angles for any innovative ideas and analyse the sustainability of any disruptive-ness to be adaptive.

MBA is there to bridge “between the innovative with disruptive” and “between the disruptive and adaptive”. Business is always about relationship and people and yet embedding a sense of anthropology and epistemology on having your MBA degree is necessary for this type of current market or situation.

MBA is mastering conflict of interest between stakeholders, and as such, cannot be replaced by any technology. 

Q: As an MBA student how are you doing in the professional field?
Gary: The ability to adapt and to adjust between different cultural diversity is one of many soft-skills that I ascertained during my MBA time with SP Jain. Yes, the finance skill and other technical skill were crucial and eye-opening, but how you act as a minority within the batch and how you add value to the batch and team-mates on your MBA projects did leave an impact, an impact which stays even after your MBA time.

Frankly, as of now, we live in a credential-degree-society, everyone can innovate – for the sky is the limit. Yet, with the three letters degree of MBA, the risk is always less compared to those who don’t have it.

In all the companies I have worked post my MBA, business acumen required as an essential skill. As an MBA, the degree of our business judgment and acumen had frequently tested and simulated during the class exercises, projects, and debates. It is a situation where one is wearing a black hat which is to be supported by a white hat yet confronted with green hat in a yellow hat environment to deliver a red hat feeling and coordinated by the blue hat

Q: What is the advantage an MBA brings to his corporate team?|
Gary: An MBA team leader shows the level of endurance and capacity. When some of us are faced and pressured without knowing the rationales behind it, those with MBA degree may see the alternative point of view by connecting the dots between one to another and by doing so they would be able to find a new source of motivation. A motivation which was needed to be able to keep on enduring and keep on pushing the boundaries; therefore, the residual would such push equals to an increased capacity.

Q: Your experience as an MBA?
: Career-wise, it really enhanced the pace of my journey pursuing the vertical enhancement of the organisational structure. Again, it is because of the business acumen skill and risk-awareness mentality that is embedded on most MBA degrees. MBA surely gave an advantage in climbing the corporate ladder.

Yet to play the role of a technical specialist (widening your span or scope of work), it is more than required to have technical certification such as CFA or CAIA or FRM to stay at up to the current structure of the industry.

I believe those two are not separable but having MBA first has gained me a clear advantage in positional or managerial advantage compared to those who earned the specialist certification first compared to the general-MBA-like degree first.

Q: Is there a need for adapting/adepting/adopting in daily routine?
Gary: The case study that we learned during MBA is mostly related to high-level decision and big picture materials. Incorporating the same kind of mind-sets and thought process at the mid-to-high level hierarchy would be deemed over-the-top kind of mindset and attitudes.

Bringing down the same structure of thinking to the lowest level possible and being able to articulate the same by using industry slangs are two things that are deemed purposeful and crucial.

Gary Tejakusuma is the Head of Investment at PT Commonwealth Life, an insurance group in Jakarta. He is a savvy and skilled financial professional with nine years of comprehensive investment expertise. Gary says he is quick to understand companies and their markets to make sound and profitable investment decisions. Gary manages multiple portfolios with diligent attention and continuous analysis of economic trends to determine appropriate asset allocation.

This interview is published in association with SP Jain School of Global Management, Singapore.

Education should instill thinking skills and mind training: Naveen Chopra, Chairman, The Chopras

“I’ve packed seven lifetimes into one life,” says Naveen Chopra, the Founder & Chairman of education group, The Chopras, immediately after we sit down to talk recently. That sets the stage as the veteran entrepreneur exudes the aura of a ‘happy-go-lucky’, go-getter personality.

Highly opinionated with some strong- and potentially controversial- views on a host of topics, he is a natural raconteur. Stories and characters come thick and fast, validating his assertion of packing in seven lifetimes already. His fulfillment comes from being able to shape the lives of hundreds of thousands of people, he says. “The education business is one where you make money while you do good.”

In a free-wheeling conversation with Manoj Aravindakshan, Editorial Director of AsiaBizToday, Naveen Chopra spoke on a wide range of topics, from starting his career with an advertising agency and “making a bundle of money by the time I was 23” to the Group’s foray into the Singapore market. He is passionate about spreading the profound and age-old wisdom of ancient Indian civilisations to the rest of the world. But perhaps the most illuminating parts of the conversation were his views on the state of education today and the skills that are essential for the workforce of tomorrow.

Edited excerpts from this conversation below:

On the entry into the Singapore market

We have set up our holding company in Singapore, The Chopras Global Holdings Pte Ltd.  We aim to use Singapore as a springboard into South East Asia. We intend to commence operations in Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, and the entire ASEAN. Maybe even Korea, in a 5-year time frame. We see relative stability of government and the regulatory framework; a business-friendly environment in Singapore.

Having established the holding company here, we thought we may as well have some economic activity here. So we have also started our branch office for student advisory services and career planning. We have also added psychometric profiling as a tool to assist students and their parents to better understand themselves and have more informed conversations about themselves. Psychometric test results lead to better understanding, better discussions, and as a consequence, better decisions.

On the eye on ASEAN besides the huge India opportunity

It has got something to do with my personal beliefs/ thinking and narrative. India is not merely a country; India is a civilisation. We are an ancient civilisation that has contributed immensely to  world civilisations, including to China. Buddhism went to China went from India. If you read the thoughts of Confucius and other thinkers, you will find an absolute mirroring of our own ancient thoughts. So, one big factor is the civilisational links with this part of the world. We have come here to be a part of the South East Asian narrative. Although we are not formally a part of South East Asia, we feel we are an integral part of SE Asia for 1000s of years.

Then, from business/financial perspective, we see a huge need for the development of the youth of these countries. We see an opportunity in that. For example, even though a lot of people are offering English language proficiency development, we think there is a big need for soft skills, such as public speaking, confidence building, communication, and so on I keep on hearing business owners and corporate executives say that they are not getting the right kind of talent. All of that is an opportunity for us.

On the issues with today’s education

The lack of thinking skills! You’ve got courses for everything except for how to think. There is no course which is teaching you about your mind. What is your mind? How does it work? Where does thought arise from?  Those are the kind of things that should be researched and brought into education.

The narrative of the “self” is gone. When I was a kid at school/ college, our conversations was centred a lot around spirituality, ‘atma’ (soul). Don’t do this, if you do this, you will have to pay a price. That is karma and karmic theory, which is all about cause and effect. If you are calm, you can trace the cause of every effect. But today our minds are so full of noise, that we don’t have time to think; we are not giving ourselves time to think.

The modern education system was designed by the western countries, notably by the British, to cater to the needs of the Industrial Revolution and post Industrial revolution so that people could fulfill certain roles. But is that the right paradigm for our times and that of the future?

We are all born lateral thinkers. However, the prevailing education system irons out lateral thinkers into straight-line/ linear thinkers.

On what the purpose of education should really be

Education, first and foremost, is mind training and it should really be about developing minds. We need to teach and re-teach people how to think. We need people to use more than the 4 or 5 percent of their brains that they are used to using right now. The only salvation is to lift that and get people to use more of their minds to cope with the issues that life will throw at them.

In today’s world, teachers and parents etc. often say, “Do what you like. Let the child do what he likes” . But does life happen in the way you like all the time? So if you are training your mind to only do the things you like, then how will you cope with something that life throws at you which you don’t like?

If you teach yourself and force yourself to do things that you don’t like; master the things that you don’t then, nothing can defeat you.

On skills needed and career opportunities for the future

We are coming to a phase where people will have to become increasingly self-employed. They will have to be self-dependent to the extent that they are able to. For example, I see great future for people who are able to developing their arts and crafts.

My perception is that the idea of “one career, one job” throughout life is gone. In the next 8-10 years, the world would have changed beyond belief. So, by the time the new generation of kids – say, those born in the last decade- would have finished their professional life, they would have changed 5-to-7 careers, not just jobs!

In such a scenario, ‘mind training’ is indispensable.

On how the Chopras’ new University in Uttarakhand, India will be different

Obviously, we will have all the traditional courses. But we will also have programs that seek to bring a better understanding of ourselves and the world we live in. For example,  our School of Policy and Governance will be mounting a course on Comparative Civilisational Studies, something that has not been done anywhere else in the world as a program. This  will study major civilisations from around the world- Indian, Chinese, European, the Incas etc.- looking at all of them.

The aim will to be understand the flow of knowledge, with a view of engendering a body of evidence and knowledge where the different civilisations understand each other and  know their contributions to each other and therefore become more accepting of the other.