Interview by Yash Panchal
Mr. K.C Arora is currently the Registrar at BIMTECH, Greater Noida. He started his career as a banker at the age of 26. He joined as a Probationary Officer in the banking sector. During the 21 years of his term with the banking industry, he identified his zeal towards teaching when he was a part of the staff training college of his bank. He quit the banking industry to join a private company in Singapore as CFO. After 4 years with the firm, he joined BIMTECH as the Associate Professor-Finance and Banking.
Mr. Arora’s zeal for teaching took him to places and his efforts were supported by the management at BIMTECH. He got promotion and is now the Professor- Finance and Banking along with the Registrar of the Institute. He is also an eminent writer and has written the book titled - “A BANKER DOWN THE RABBIT HOLE – Insightful Episodes across India and Abroad”.
Mr. K.C Arora’s experience in the education industry
My experience in the education industry with BIMTECH has been for the past 14 years. Before this, I was in the banking sector for about 21 years, out of which for 5 years I was with the staff training college of the bank. Post this, I cast a glance over my career and realized that the 5 years in the staff training college were the best years out of the 21 years in the banking sector. Most productive and rewarding.
After this, I went to Singapore for 4 years as CFO of a private company. I returned from there and joined teaching in view of my rewarding career in teaching earlier. I joined BIMTECH as a Professor of Finance and I am today here as the Registrar. What makes the journey all the more satisfying is that I always had a bent of mind towards teaching. The sense of satisfaction comes from the fact that in this industry I am able to give back to the society by educating young minds.
A nurturing and caring leadership style
My leadership style is nurturing, caring, trying to nurture the skills of subordinates, to develop the staff, to take along everyone as a team and lead by example, help in everyone’s collective growth and creating an environment for the personal growth of people around me. This is highly important as it motivates my subordinates at all points of time.
Challenges to deal with as the Registrar of the Group
When I joined BIMTECH, I had a fair idea about it. I was told that if I wanted to be a professor in a B-School, I should target a good B-School and BIMTECH was rated as one of the good B-schools even then. I don’t particularly remember any major challenges in acclimatizing with the scenarios in BIMTECH. Our Director is a very good leader who keeps his team bound as a united team BIMTECH by his leadership qualities. I do not face any big challenge as financial resources are strong. The regulators are managed well as the infrastructural facilities at BIMTECH are many times more than the AICTE requirement.
A lot of opportunities are available for the faculties to showcase their skills. I was allowed to present research papers in Brazil and Singapore as well as in India while at BIMTECH. I was deputed to attend an Advanced Global Leadership Programme in Shanghai, China organized by AIMA. There is an environment that encourages research.
Regularly updated curriculum involving best practices of the industry
Our industry-interface is very strong, particularly to revise the curriculum as per the need of the industry. We do an exercise every year. One is Area Advisory Committee that conducts a meeting of industry experts at Mumbai, where we can find all the relevant finance and other stream professionals from big companies.
We provide them with our curriculum beforehand and during the time of the meeting, we discuss as to how we can update our curriculum further. More than 60% of the suggestions are workable and we have been in a very decent way of updating our curriculum every year.
We have 4 programs, for each of which the Programme Advisory Committee is formed. We invite industry experts and seek their counsel. We have a Center for Corporate Relations that is constantly in touch with the corporates and making the best use of our industry-interface. We invite a visiting guest faculty for our students for every course. Lectures of 6 hours out of 30 hours are taken by the visiting guest faculty. All these efforts bring the best practices prevailing in the industry to students.
Placements at BIMTECH
Our placements add up to placing about 95% of students every year. With the brand name associated with BIMTECH and the kind of robust curriculum, our students are industry ready and hence we are able to get our students recruited in all the grade-1 corporates.
Availability for the students
As a teacher, I am always approachable. We have a system of identifying slow learners. After our observation of over 6 weeks during any trimester, we are able to categorize fast and slow learners. We pay extra attention/personal attention to students who are slow learners, giving them extra tutorials and attention, etc.
An ideal school environment
In B-School, the faculty should have practical exposure so that knowledge can be converted to the application. A practical orientation is necessary to be going on side by side.
Goals in mind for the coming years
We are already one of the top 10 private B-Schools and top 20th all over India. We aim at being one of the top 50 Asian B-Schools. We also have NBA (National Board of Accreditation) Accreditation for all our programs for a span of 5 years till 2022. We have also acquired equivalence of PGDM program with MBA degree from the Association of Indian Universities.
We are at an advanced stage with international accreditations with AACSB for international accreditation. We aim at expanding these envelopes further.
Suggestions for the youth
Be focused and hardworking, as there is no substitute for hard work. Aptitude is essential. These are old virtues but will always be relevant and in fashion.