Interview by Sakshi Aggarwal
Mr. Pradeep has completed PGDPM in the field of HR from Xavier Institute of Social Service. Prior to Garden City University, Mr. Pradeep has worked in various reputed organizations such as Grasim Cement as an HR Manager, in JCT Electronics Ltd. as a Training Manager, in Airtel as a General Manager (Head HR), Bihar and Jharkhand Circle for 2 years, in Tata Teleservices Ltd. as a General Manager (East Head HR), in Reliance Retail Ltd. as AVP HR, in MTIL as Senior Vice-President HR, Chairman and Managing Director in National Institute of Business Excellence, as HR Advisor in Indian and Multinational companies, and as an Associate Director in BS Talent Solutions Pvt. Ltd.
Mr. Pradeep’s experience in the education sector
I am an HR Professional and have worked in various industries at a leadership position across the country. When I was working in the industry, I had visited many institutions ranging from Tier 1 Tier 3 institutions for recruiting freshers for various roles. One thing which was common in students was that they all were a novice, full of aspirations, not industrious and not very much suitable to perform their duties. We as an industry used to hire first and then train them as per our culture and requirement. It was then that I used to wonder that why institutions don’t train their students in a way they become industry-ready. There should be a bridge between academia and industry. All these years, students were accustomed to a certain environment and confined to theoretical knowledge. They were yet to transfer their theoretical knowledge to practice. I observed that due to this transformation, they get frustrated very fast.
Now at GCU, I personally look after student’s personality development and soft skills training, so that they are employable and have harnessed certain skills which shall help them to carry on their job and build their careers.
In Garden City University, I have conducted more than 40 workshops in a year’s time on Grooming and Personality Development where around 800 students did participate. I loved sharing my 27 years of industry’s experience. So far, it is a very satisfying experience for me to train the students. I observe that youngsters have very less tolerance and they get upset very fast. They get excited very fast as well and very next day they get demoralized, dejected and broken.
In my workshop, I never prepare my lecture and firmly believe in sharing my experience. What I share it is beyond any book and it is purely a lifetime experience. Students also connect with me easily and understand while going through my life journey of industries.
I enjoy working in GCU and found that education industry is the best industry. I would rather, not call it an industry but it is more than an industry. It is a service because we are shaping the future of students.
Mr. Pradeep’s philosophy of leadership and his leadership style
The philosophy of leadership in one statement is - “it is nothing but walk the talk”. People follow your actions more than words. Leadership is teaching what you preach by practice. My leadership style is very democratic because I empower my colleagues and give them an opportunity and freedom to perform. Even if they fail, I do not have any problem. If someone tells that I have not failed that means he has not tried. Give them enough freedom but under supervision so that they do not do severe damage.
Changes in the education sector noticed by Mr. Pradeep over the years
I have done MBA in 1989 from Xavier Institute of Social Services, Ranchi. Those days, we used to attend our classes very regularly and we used to study to gain knowledge. Our place of learning was library and handouts provided after class which we used to collect and read in our leisure time. Today, in this Google age, the information is at fingertips of students.
Most optimum path according to Mr. Pradeep for a student wanting to excel in any field of management
Being a State Private University, we have liberty to modify and develop our syllabus and course curriculum suiting to industry needs so that our students will be employable and can work in the industry with much ease. We use modern teaching methodology using case studies, role play, business games etc. rather than the conventional method of lecture alone.
Growth of students through placement opportunities available at GCU
There is a saying that “Hire for attitude and train for skill”. We give enough input and help students to develop right kind of attitude so that not only they get hired but carry on the job very well and rise in the corporate ladder.
Mr. Pradeep on what makes GCU stand apart from other universities
We are 25 years of institution. I am pleased to inform you that every year more than 100 companies visit us for campus placement. Our is global college and has more than 40,000 aluminous. Currently, 35 countries students are here at campus. We really provide 100% placement to our students. We work on students to make them employable. When companies come they found our students confident and fit to work with them.
Qualities, which over the years have helped Mr. Pradeep and the entire management, create a brand name for Garden City University
Our motto is emphasis of life, we provide lifetime experience to students. We do not only focus on academic but also co-curricular activities. We organize more than 120 co-curricular activities. Students get a lot of opportunities to showcase their talents. This makes us stand apart from other institutions.
Mr. Pradeep on how they prepare students to face challenges of modern organizations and global standards successfully
At GCU, we give variety of experience to our students apart from classroom teaching. We give them lot of exposure through guest lectures from industries, interactions with experts and workshops. Last year, Mr. Shiv Khera was invited to conduct a leadership workshop. Around 60 students participated for 5 days. That is the level of support we give them to excel in their career.
Goals in mind for GCU for the next few years
In next 3 years, we are going to be the best University in Bangalore. We have better than best of facilities from fully equipped classrooms to sports infrastructure and library.
Suggestions for the current youth and the aspiring students
I wish all the students who want to excel in their career best of luck.