Ruben Vardanian, President of Moscow School of Management SKOLKOVO, gave a talk in “Real time” programme on FinamFM.
We offer you Ruben’s brightest statements about a current world situation, a status of education and the SKOLKOVO School.
a struggle for the best human resources. Modern technologies and transport infrastructure allow people to live around the world. People will choose the best place for their family and themselves. The time of resources is passing by. There comes a time when talents are important.
The world increasingly becomes interconnected. It’s highly important to understand what goes on not only in one country, but also in countries with different cultural and business traditions. It’s very important to have knowledge that helps you make decisions in great uncertainty and with a lack of information, because we live in the environment where rules of play are neither clear, nor definite, there are constant changes, it’s not so obvious as we would like it to be. But nevertheless people succeed. And the question of how one can succeed in this environment is of high importance …”
“If you look at Harvard Business School and its curriculum even today, you’ll see that MBA students have about 750 cases for two school years: two-three cases about Russia, 15-20 about China, 7-8 about India. But they have a poor notion of the actual situation in those countries. Moreover, they live in the environment that was originally formed on a different qualitative level including jurisprudence, infrastructure, information, access to various resources. For instance, it strikes me that all Chinese cases absolutely ignore the role of the Chinese Communist Party, its influence of business. It’s absurd, because if somebody wants to do business in China, they should understand that Indian bureaucracy is also hushed up.
From this point of view, a student who graduated from a prestigious school is prepared to work at good corporations, good countries and is completely not prepared to what is going on fast-moving economies”
“Less than 3% of those who graduated from a business school do start their own business, in the first 5 years on average. It’s 8% at Stanford. Over two thirds of the CEOs of 500 world top companies, the major ones, don’t have MBA. It turns out that a model designed for business education is management-oriented. A graduate from a prestigious school is prepared to work at big corporations, but is completely unprepared to work in a changing environment, i.e. in emerging markets”
“Moscow is a megapolis of the world level. This is a very attractive place for foreign students, because here they have an opportunity to live in the environment that is different but still more similar than Chinese or Indian one. Moscow is the gateway to BRIC countries. During their education students get an opportunity to understand what goes on both in Russia, and in China, and in India at least. The advantage is some other countries, continents. That is rather unique, few schools offer that”.
“The structure of our entrance exam is different from that at usual schools: there is always a sort of officer, a school member, you take a formal test, either pass or fail. Our exam is very interactive, it also includes interviews with professors and founders. The final word rests with the founder. We try to be subjective and see a twinkle in their eyes, whether they are ready to take these risks or not.
So I ask a simple question: “Imagine that you play cards with three other players in a public room and the loser will get undressed. While playing you realize that your partners are cheating you. What will you do?“ There are very interesting and different answers. One says, “I’ll start a brawl”. Another says, “I’ll cheat too”. Another says, “I’ll stop playing”. “I’ll try to reason them”. “If I knew they would cheat, I wouldn’t start playing”. This is a standpoint. This question has no correct answer. This question is aimed at making people think for themselves: am I prepared to do business with partners who may potentially cheat me?
The main thing here is that people should have a standpoint and understand what they are prepared to do and what not, that they should have some model to evaluate their success”.