5 Qualities of a Kick-Ass Executive MBA Professional

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There are numerous advantages to becoming an executive MBA professional. When you complete an online MBA in India, you’re investing in your all-round development and defining your career path. These courses are an opportunity to learn from industry experts as well as to access the latest industry knowledge. Do you have what it takes to succeed as an executive MBA professional? Take a look at the top five qualities that you’ll need to get ahead of the competition.

Interpersonal Capabilities

Interpersonal capabilities are vital for executive MBA professionals. A leadership role requires outstanding people skills and the ability to motivate and inspire others is an important aspect of this role. You’ll need to be able to communicate effectively with staff, colleagues, and clients if you want to succeed. You can advance your communication capabilities by completing an executive MBA in India. During an MBA you’ll learn more about complex business language and how to express key concepts, which makes communicating in a corporate setting easier. The ability to get your message across verbally as well as in writing is important for this role. You’ll need to develop a professional communication style in order to succeed. The ability to connect with people is also vital for networking. Understanding how to build and maintain good relationships is important in a business environment. An MBA for working professionals will help to develop your confidence so that meeting new people becomes easy.

Strategic Analysis

An executive MBA professional must be able to think strategically. The aim of an online MBA in India is to develop your ability to see the bigger picture and to create a plan of action that will result in the achievement of your company’s goals. You’ll need to possess the ability to envision your company’s future and to figure out how you’re going to get it there. Superior problem-solving skills are required to succeed in this role. You’ll need to be a critical thinker with a comprehensive understanding of business issues. It’s necessary to think problems through carefully before taking action as the decisions of an executive MBA professional have far-reaching consequences. The ability to carry out research and analyze data adds value to the company. Professionals in this role must be able to develop new methods of approaching certain aspects of the business in order to boost efficiency.

Resilience

Resilience is a key quality for any successful executive MBA professional. These senior level positions require the ability to work under pressure in a fast-paced business environment. The high level of responsibility that this role entails makes the ability to cope with stress important. An MBA for working professionals develops your capacity to handle deadlines and to stay calm in challenging situations. As a senior level employee, you’ll need to be able to cope with whatever situations come your way. The ability to stay focused when challenging emotions are triggered is an aspect of resilience. Executive MBA professionals must be able to handle times of uncertainty without becoming distracted. As a senior level employee, you’ll be required to develop strategies to navigate your company through challenges. Strong leadership is required in hard times and staff members will be looking to you as a role model so the ability to stay focused and motivated is vital.

Entrepreneurial Capabilities

Entrepreneurial capabilities refer to the skills that are required to identify gaps in the market and to assess whether they provide an opportunity that’s worth pursuing or not. An online MBA in India is an opportunity to develop solutions for real-life business problems with guidance from a mentor. The creativity and business knowledge to develop a strategy to cater to gaps in the market is also beneficial. Entrepreneurial capabilities facilitate a company’s growth and expansion. If you want to advance your career and become a successful CEO in the future, you’ll need an advanced understanding of business. Entrepreneurial capabilities enable you to develop the steps that are required to achieve the company’s goals. A global mindset is beneficial if you plan to take your company’s operations to the next level. Flexibility and the ability to learn new things is helpful when you enter the global market. Technical skills are required to conduct business on digital platforms.

Leadership Qualities

An executive MBA in India enables you to develop your leadership capabilities, which are vital for any management position. You’ll need to be able to oversee staff to ensure that they’re carrying out their duties efficiently. An efficient leader will motivate and encourage their employees so that they’re able to reach their full potential. Good leaders are excellent role models whose hard work inspires their team. They are also able to make their employees feel valued so that they give their best at work.

Now that you know what qualities you need to succeed, why not enroll for an online MBA in India? These programs provide an opportunity to advance your knowledge of business so that you can take your career to the next level.

5 Common Executive MBA Interview Questions

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Searching for a job after completing your MBA is a tedious process and having a plan to approach this challenge makes it a lot easier and less stressful. Once you scout the jobs that you want to apply for there is a need to understand the hiring process of each organization and role you want to apply for. Once you have applied and confirmed an interview with the organization, the toughest part is to crack it.

Are you prepared for your upcoming interview? Get ready for your big day by taking a look at the questions that you’re likely to be asked. Preparing your responses beforehand reduces interview stress and increases your chances of being hired.

To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of the five most common executive MBA interview questions. Knowing what to expect during the interview can help you to get ahead of your competition.

Work Experience

Prospective employers will ask you for information on your professional background. You can prepare for questions about your professional history by writing a summary of your relevant work experience. It is important to note that prospective employers will be looking for evidence of your leadership capabilities. They’ll also want to know more about the business and management skills that you have developed. You can expect your interviewer to ask you about the key responsibilities that you performed in your previous job. Your response to this question will provide insight into the capabilities that you have developed during your career. When you’re responding to this question, you can include a problem that you addressed, how you solved the issue and how your contribution benefited the company. When you’re answering these questions make sure that you provide the interviewer with clear and concise responses. Exclude any irrelevant information and instead focus on the qualities which will contribute to your success in an Executive MBA position.

Strengths and Weaknesses

When a prospective employer asks you about your strengths and weaknesses, you need to respond in a way that highlights your capabilities. While you should use this answer to showcase your skills, it’s important, to be honest. Honesty during an interview helps to build trust with your prospective employer, which will increase your chances of being hired. It’s advisable to share strengths that will be valuable in an Executive MBA role. Focus on your capabilities that are related to leadership, communication, and problem-solving. You’ll also need to back up the strengths that you’ve mentioned by giving examples of when you’ve displayed these capabilities. Think of one concise example for each of the strengths that you plan to mention. Include an experience where your problem-solving skills benefited the company as well as an experience where you demonstrated your capacity for leadership. When it comes to mentioning your weaknesses, you can explain how you’ve addressed any shortcomings by completing executive MBA programs. This question aims to ensure that you are a good match for a senior-level role.

Qualifications

You can expect your prospective employer to ask you about your qualifications. This question allows them to gain insight into your suitability for an Executive MBA role. Completing a one year executive MBA in India will help you to stand out from other interviewees when you’re responding to this line of inquiry. When you’re answering this question it’s advisable to include the key skills that you developed when you were completing your MBA. You can include how your leadership and entrepreneurial capabilities were enhanced during the executive MBA program. Including the development of strategic analysis, capabilities are also beneficial.

Motivation

Your prospective employer will want to know why you want to work for their company. After you’ve completed your executive MBA in India, you’ll need to browse through job listings and apply to suitable positions. Part of this process involves deciding whether the company is the right fit for your skills and qualifications. A thoughtful answer to this question shows your interviewer the reasons why you think you’ll fit in at their company. To prepare for this question make sure that you research the company and its history. Read the company’s goals and mission statements. When you’re compiling your response it’s advisable to include the reasons why you’re interested in working at the company as well as why you think that your capabilities will be beneficial to the success of their business. Include the reasons why you are the right person to help the company reach its goals. By reading the mission statement and company values you can also explain how you are compatible with the company culture. Your response shows prospective employers that you’re serious about your job application and that you’re interested in their company.

Career Goals

Your response to this question will give your prospective employer an understanding of how ambitious you are. Your reply will also provide them with insight into whether you are focused on your career or not. Prospective employers want to know that you are passionate about your job and dedicated to completing your duties successfully. During your reply, you can mention why you made the time to complete the best online MBA in India. Taking the initiative to complete additional training is an indication of your ambition and commitment to your career.

Now that you know more about the questions that you can expect during an Executive MBA interview, you can start preparing your responses. It’s advisable to compile concise responses which showcase your work experience as well as the skills that you developed when you were completing your MBA course.

Top 5 Benefits of Pursuing Cloud Computing Courses

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Do you work in a highly technical environment? Would you like to shift to a totally different job and have a good understanding of the new duties you are embracing? Would you like to have a competitive edge over those you are trying to beat at the next job interview? The solution is simple – take a cloud computing course

The market is demanding more and more people who are capable of understanding and working with a cloud computing service, and this branch of the IT industry is only destined to grow. The cloud computing market is growing at a 22.8 percent CAGR (Compound annual growth rate) and will reach $127.5 billion in 2018. Wikibon research says that the Amazon Web Services revenue will increase to $43 billion by 2022, while its main competitors like Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud will follow at a close distance. Also, more and more companies are opting for cloud services, with a decrease of in-house IT facilities and an increase of cloud service providers, which makes it crucial to know how to handle a cloud service. You need proof you are the right person to rely on when dealing with cloud computing, and a certification is your entrance ticket in this crucial IT service. Here are the top 5 benefits you will gain by embarking on a cloud computing course.

1. Learn a skill that is highly in demand and is destined to grow in the following years. 

Nowadays employers seek more and more IT professionals that know their way around cloud computing and can help them implement a cloud environment into their infrastructure as seamlessly as possible. Recently, Indeed.com conducted a research showing that in the US there is a high request for positions in cloud computing, and yet 25000 positions remain unfilled. By taking a comprehensive cloud computing training and certification, you would be one step further than the competition and one step closer to a job you are super qualified for thanks to the key concepts, latest trends and best practices you have learned in the course. For example, Microsoft Azure is a cloud computing service that is actively seeking professionals to take on board, the number of jobs they offer has increased over the years, but a study of 120 Microsoft partners highlights that companies are having a tough time to find qualified professionals.

2. Get a certification that will open up the doors to a better-paid job.

This title is a clear statement, but here you can find more figures that will tell you the truth: a recent report from Simplyhired says that the average salaries for cloud administrators are less than $78,000, while cloud developers earn an average of $118,758 a year. Cloud architects can earn up to 6 figures, with median salaries of $124,406 and some salaries as high as $173,719. Forbes states that with a cloud computing certification an IT professional can earn an annual salary of $125,971. Having a cloud computing certification will not just be an ornament in your living room, but it will seriously increase your chances to get a better paying job.

3. Set yourself apart and get a recession-proof job.

Even Silicon Valley had a terrible moment when worldwide recession hit the job market. Many qualified engineers had a dreadful time when job hunting and finding a fulfilling position seemed to be impossible. With a cloud computing course and certification, this will not be the case for you. The IT industry is demanding more and more cloud professionals and the market just keeps growing by the hour. Companies are having a hard time to find the suitable skills they look for in a specialized IT professional, so getting that cloud computing degree is a no-brainer.

4. Build trust with your employer and get recognition from your peers. 

In a recent research conducted by Microsoft and IDC, holding a certification, having a highly relevant training and experience are three of the four core attributes that a company looks for in an applicant when trying to fill a cloud-related position. Taking a cloud computing course can be your ticket to a better paying job and can get you to an above average status among IT engineers. For a cloud computing company, your certification is a seal of guarantee regarding the fact that you will be able to help your company reduce risks and cut costs to implement your workloads and projects on different cloud platforms. Thanks to your certification you will enter and better cloud-related projects, and you will rise to the status of cloud computing experts in front of your clients. It will be the tangible proof you can be trusted with complex procedures and handle cloud deployment in an enterprise. By now, you have a greater understanding of how a certification can help you. You can specialize in one area or you can get a new job. Cloud certifications are a great way to take your career to greater heights.

5. Beat the competition at your next job interview.

The job interview stage is stressful in any job-hunting situation. You suddenly have sweaty hands, you can’t stop your legs from shaking, and you look at the next candidate that stands up and enters the room for the interview. And yet, you are the one that nails the interview and gets the job. And all thanks to the certification you gained just some weeks before. Hiring companies will notice it and tell your employers you have the right cloud computing skills, knowledge, and expertise for the job. Cloud computing is a domain that is going to grow exponentially in the next years. Choosing a certification in this field will be a wise choice for job opportunities and better salaries.

Cloud Technology Is the Past, Present, and The Future

Over the last few years, cloud technology has transformed the way businesses operate. Today, companies big and small rely on public cloud platforms to host and implement critical applications—this trend will only grow stronger in 2018. Whether you’re planning to carve an entry into this domain or looking to grow your cloud computing career, a certification will help you gain the most-recent skills and contribute to your organization’s business.

Why Digital Marketing Should Be a Focus Area for Every MBA Program?

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At the time of writing this, the live internet stats revealed that there were close to 3,844,290,105 people from around the world online. Over 168,464,899,765 emails were sent, 3,977,654,365 searches were made on Google alone, and there were 2,102,439,759 active members just on Facebook. Additionally, there were over 359,114 laptops, 2,886,249 smartphones, and 335,890 tablets sold on just this one day.

From the times of print and mass media to search engine marketing and personalized marketing strategies, we have come a long way. But has our education become completely relevant to cater to the exponential growth of diverse industries? Have our MBA curriculums adapted to the modern trends?

How Relevant are the MBA Courses in India?
In India, a full-time MBA course covers core concepts on Accounting, Strategy and Frameworks, Human Resource Management, Organizational Behavior, Leadership, Marketing, and Information Technology. Though the curriculum is comprehensive, an Indian Express report reveals that they are obsolete and fall short of current industry expectations and job skills.

Here’s Why Digital Marketing Should be a Focus Area for MBA Programs:

To Make the Graduates Employable
According to an ASSOCHAM report, only 7% of the MBA students graduating out of B-schools were employable. The rest did not possess industry-relevant skills or exposure to get hired by potential companies.

The report also claimed that apart from the economic slowdown, one major reason for the poor employability ratio has been poor education standards and irrelevant curriculum. There is a gap between what students study and what is expected out of them. This makes it inevitable that MBA courses with curriculum inculcating in-demand skills will increase the employability ratio.

To Get Them Better Salaries
The same ASSOCHAM report also revealed that despite spending close to 4 or 5 lakhs on their education, an MBA aspirant draws a salary as low as Rs. 8,000 to Rs. 10,000. The problem even persists with the top B-schools, and one of the key solutions to tackle this is to revamp the entire MBA course ecosystem.

Brands, today, need digital marketing experts and analysts to stay ahead of the competition and connect with their target audiences, and that is where skilled digital marketing graduates come into action. MBA graduates with specialized skills in digital marketing are preferred more by companies and startups, and according to Payscale, the average salary for digital marketing managers is Rs. 4 lacs per annum. An increase in experience and specialization skills is followed by an increase in the amount as well.

To Meet the Growing Demands of Diverse Industries
Throwing in some more statistics from research on Statistia.com, India (in 2017) had more than 460 million people using the internet, making it the world’s second hottest online market after China. The trend reveals that by the year 2021, the numbers will increase to more than 635 million. With such a massive increase, it only makes more sense for brands having a market in India to switch to the digital medium to target, interact, and take their brand and products to their potential consumers.

As brands continue to eye the Indian market, they will need not just qualified but innovative, proactive, and sensible people with them to take the brands’ vision and products to their customers. This calls for the need of digital marketing not just as an ancillary course, but as an integral part of every MBA program.

To Make Graduates Job-Ready
According to Professor K.Y Bhushan, a senior advisor at the IBS, it’s not just about digital marketing today but about several allied technologies like Big Data analytics, IoT, and more that influence marketing and promotions as well. With tons of companies looking for individuals with a blend of the most in-demand job skills, MBA needs to be tailored to courses and content that will make a graduate job-ready in today’s competitive market.

Parting Words

Abhijit Bhaduri, management consultant, and author opines that the Indian business schools should step up their game to address the gap between what students study and experience in the industry.

Abhijit believes that the shaping forces of the world have to be brought into the classrooms for more effective learning and that is why professors and practitioners must work together and co-create course content. With the AIMA also aiming to make the Indian Management education the second most prominent in the world by 2025, we can expect to see a revolution in MBA courses in terms of the curriculum in the near future.

5 Qualities of a Product Manager

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One of the most sought-after roles in the industry is that of a Product Manager. Not only does it combine various functions but also packs great potential for growth into higher leadership positions.

Forbes states that “The role sits at the intersection of business, technology, and design, combining strategy, marketing, leadership, and other skills with the end goal of launching an amazing product.”

So, what does it take to be a great product manager? Read on to find out:

  1. Thou Shall Know Thy Customer
    A product manager is the key to identifying the intersection between customers’ value and what they are willing to pay. It needs to fit back into the organization’s product plan. Josh Elman, a widely acclaimed product manager said, “The job of a product manager is to help your team (and company) ship the right product to your users.”
    Unless the right segment of customers and their latent needs are identified, building the right product is never going to take off. To better know the customers, young management trainees are often advised to tour client locations. Having attentive ears, an open mind and a ready notebook help. Make a quick note of customer pain areas as you interact. These are inputs for the product engineers.
  2. Solve Through Innovation
    The product manager is the entrepreneur within the structure of an organization. Once the customers and their problems are known, the product manager needs to come out with an innovative solution that solves the problem, yet is technically feasible. The solution must also be commercially viable and must make business sense. Marwan Soghaier, CPO of SteelHouse says, “Product managers are problem solvers with vision.”
    A good starting point is to think from the customers’ perspective. Often the product manager imbibes a bias from the engineering team by thinking of quick-fixes or what is readily buildable. In reality, the product should undergo as many build iterations (even at the cost of angry engineers) till it meets the customers’ requirements.
  3. Lead From the Front: Communicate Effectively
    By design, a product manager is at the center of all action. This means that there are multiple people to deal with. A good product manager is a people’s person. It is one thing to assign tasks and drop emails, quite another to get those done. On the one hand, the product-in-charge needs to be able to break down technical information in a way that can be explained to the customers, who may not always be technically inclined. On the other hand, he/she needs to understand technical conversations well enough to convince the stakeholders to get behind the agreed design.
    A budding product manager must start with listening well, summarizing lengthy meetings and discussions into crisp action points and getting them done.
  4. Drive User Experience
    So there’s a great idea, the development team is rallying behind it, and in theory, it does what it is supposed to do. Or does it? Would a customer use the product after committing to the sale? If not, that’s an end to the product roadmap. The answer to the question lies in User Experience (UX).
    The more pleasing the visual and overall experience of the product to the customer is; higher are the sales. The product manager is uniquely positioned to interface between the design and build teams. Through providing inputs on everything from color schemes to product logo, the end outcome is noticeably well managed. For young professionals, this doesn’t come easy. They may start by shadowing senior product guys and learning from the marketing and communications team.
  5. Decide like a Boss!
    In a perfect world, all customer requirements are addressed in a single launch, well within timeline and in conformity to proposed budget. But in reality, none of it is possible. There are multiple solutions, designs, customer requirements, feedback and steep timelines. Effective decision-making is the true essence of product management. A good product manager has to cut through the clutter of conflicting interests and prioritize a list of immediate to mid-term deliverables. In the product management world, it is often said that “There are no right answers, only intelligent choices.”
    Rajiv Srivatsa, the former senior Product Manager at Yahoo, believes, “Best PMs would say NO more than 95% of the time. Products are always built with limited resources, limited time and a barrage of ideas come from the PM, engineers, users, management, etc. They must have the conviction to say NO many a time instead of meekly succumbing.”

In conclusion, it may seem that the product management is a gray area, with no clear tasks or key responsibility areas. However, in more than one way, a Product Manager is the CEO of the product/ brand. The more time product managers spend in executing the job well, the better placed they are to take up positions in the top echelons of management.

The Essential Elements of an Ideal Product Roadmap

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A good idea doesn’t guarantee a “winning product.” It takes a tremendous amount of brainstorming, allocation of resources, finalization of timelines, and a lot more before a concept is materialized and delivered within the deadline. However, all this is greatly dependant on the product roadmap.

WHAT IS A PRODUCT ROADMAP?

A product roadmap provides an overview of the “big picture” and answers some of the most important questions:

  • What are the business goals of the product?
  • What kind of team is required for the project?
  • What software and technologies should be employed in the product development?

There are two main objectives of a product roadmap, which are:

  • To identify a forward-looking go-to-market plan and all the possible risks and obstacles.
  • To open a dialogue between various stakeholders- investors, manufacturers, designers, etc. to weigh in on the strategy and help in making appropriate changes before the actual work is started.

Most products meet failure because of weak or poorly structured roadmaps. However, it’s easy to tell if a roadmap is a winner or not by its essential elements:

FLEXIBILITY

“Stay committed to your decisions, but stay flexible in your approach.”

Tony Robbins

Perfect roadmaps don’t exist, at least not when they are created. Seasoned product managers know that a product guideline goes through many alterations till completion. The reason is simple – you can’t predict the future. Problems, hurdles, a difference of opinions between stakeholders, etc. are natural. So, an ideal roadmap must be flexible. It should have room for adjustments. Otherwise, making changes when you are in too deep can become a nightmare.

The following are the two main variables that you need to be careful about regarding project flexibility:

Time – A product’s release date may change by a few days to a few months. So, the roadmap must be divided into a series of “current,” “near term,” and “future” goals. This makes it easier to adjust to the changes as instead of sliding every single task on the timeline you need to focus on a particular “time horizon” only.

Scope – Many times, project delivery according to the deadline can’t be compromised with. So, when trouble stirs up, you may need to bring in additional resources and put in more hours. However, unless there is flexibility in the scope, it can’t be done without increasing stress.

To maintain scope flexibility, a product roadmap must not be created with set minute details that direct exactly how a feature must be delivered. For instance, instead of aiming at “Twitter Connect” by the fourth quarter, you can put it down as “Social Media Integration.” It leaves enough room for the adjustments. Besides, if by Q4 the stakeholders decide that they prefer Facebook instead of Twitter, you won’t have to worry too much.

For a mature product, a goal-oriented roadmap is a correct format to choose when the market is dynamic. However, when the market is stabilized, focus on the features can benefit the product in the long run. In case the product hasn’t matured yet, then the orientation should essentially be towards the goals, the degree of which is again dependant on the market conditions.

ORGANIZATION THROUGH SIMPLICITY

A blueprint with tons of labels and micro-deadlines can easily bring chaos in the making of the product. Now, one might argue that product development is a complicated process with some moving parts. However, this necessarily doesn’t mean that it should have a complicated guideline as well.

The roadmap of even the most complicated product can be simplified. The more complex the product is, the simpler it’s roadmap must be. This is because too many complications will hinder the growth and increase the risk of discrepancies and errors.

 

In conclusion, a product roadmap should be created using the venture capitalist Guy Kawasaki’s “10/20/30 Rule of PowerPoint” which says that an ideal PowerPoint presentation should have no more than ten slides, last for 20 minutes tops and uses a font size of 30 points or more. So, if one has to make a presentation of a product roadmap, it should satisfy Kawasaki’s rule.

A great deal of time and energy can be saved by giving due attention to the creation of a roadmap first because that lays the foundation for the actual product development. So, if the building blocks are positioned correctly, the rest of the process is likely to work out without a hitch.