Hire based on the talent of the candidate, not the location

 

Hello everyone!

We are extremely delighted to announce our weekly column on the most widely circulated newspaper in the country- Dainik Bhaskar!

In our attempt to conduct continuous research to update our curriculum based on the industry’s needs, having a weekly column on Dainik Bhaskar has really helped us spread awareness about the concept of work-readiness among a wider audience!

Here’s our latest piece for Dainik Bhaskar where we talk about how things need to change in tier 2 & 3 cities in India and the Employability Research study in Andhra Pradesh we were invited for.

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As of the 2011 census, there are 8 tier 1 cities in India and as many as 3,133 tier 2 & 3 cities (as well as 1,233 rural hubs). Ensuring access to good quality jobs and work-readiness training in small town India is of utmost importance if we want to ensure sustainable growth for the Indian economy.

This past week, as part of an Employability Research study in Andhra Pradesh, we travelled to several colleges around Vishakhapatnam and Vijayawada. The study was conducted in association with professors at Harvard University and Stanford University, as well as the Ministry of Education. We interacted with close to 1000 students who will soon be sitting for placement season. As expected, the colleges in smaller towns tend to be homogeneous and conservative, but extremely welcoming and hospitable of external researchers and trainers.

 

We sat down with several placement heads in these colleges to get their thoughts. For them, getting companies to visit colleges often involves traveling to their offices and convincing their HR heads to make the trip to recruit. The placement cells have put in significant effort (as compared to tier 1 colleges) to get the students placed.

Here are some trends that we observed:

Firstly, India was one of the big players in manufacturing when colleges in AP were set up. But now, most of the recruiters that visit colleges are IT Services companies who are looking to hire for software development jobs. Since the college curriculum trains students in core engineering, there’s a major gap between what the students are being taught and what companies are looking for. If we could revive Make In India and increase spending in the manufacturing and infrastructure space, more jobs could be created in these sectors.

As Mr. M. Lakshmi Deepak – Placement head, Sir CR Reddy College of Engineering (Eluru) shared, “If the government could increase emphasis on creating jobs for these core engineers, that would be a great solution to the current situation. Our curriculums also need to be constantly updated according to industry needs.”

Secondly, girls are doing better than boys when it comes to placements in these regions. The job offers rolled out to girls is much higher, and companies also want to increase their ratios so conduct additional events for recruiting women.

Thirdly, the students were fantastic academically, with extremely high grades and significant grit and hard-work. However, confidence and exposure are the main differentiators between students in larger cities. This can be overcome with effective training and mentorship. When asked their fears of placement season, students cited their key challenges as confidence, communication skills and English fluency. When asked what their vision and career objectives are, most of them are looking to be respected in society and are keen to work for any reputed company and have a good role.

 

In conclusion, the colleges were impressive and the students have significant potential and drive. They are sincere and very eager to be hired. While it might take some effort to travel to smaller towns, it is time that companies across industries started hiring from across India instead of only from the big brand colleges!

 

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Shibika’s Internship Experience at The Aditya Birla Group- Bangalore

As a second year student doing a Sales internship at The Aditya Birla Group, I have learnt a lot! Starting from strategizing to making pitch-in report to companies, I have grown as an individual. This internship has also helped me improve the quality of my PowerPoint presentations. I am presently working with the Corporate Sales department under Mr. Amit Shekhar Nayak (Sales Manager), who has been a very supportive mentor. 
 

IMG_20160519_155051235I plan out strategies as to how to tie-up with other companies. I am responsible for making presentations and reports on how to make a pitch in to other companies for an alliance. Thank you Talerang for giving me the opportunity to explore the world of Sales and Marketing through such a well structured internship!

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Internship Experience at Talerang

My main projects at Talerang were redesigning the website and creating content for the social media marketing campaign. Additionally, I worked on recruiting Campus Delegates, and collating material for training and placements.

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Photo: Kanika (L) with fellow campus delegates and internship manager Kartik Chaturvedi (second from the right)

Talerang is a start up, hence the work environment was fast paced. I got a lot of exposure through the diversity of my projects. My marketing projects honed my writing and design skills. The Campus Delegate campaign required me to interact with new students – this improved my confidence and interpersonal skills. I also improved my organization skills and work style efficiency through collating information for training and placements. Dealing with multiple projects and multiple deadlines taught me how to prioritize my work without being overwhelmed. I believe that these skills are a step towards becoming more work-ready.

The atmosphere at Talerang was positive and inspiring! The managers acted as my mentors and guided me throughout my internship. They ensured that I made the most of my time by giving me responsibility for concrete projects. Additionally, I was always encouraged to give my input during meetings.

Kanika - Ticker

My internship was not only a glimpse of the corporate world but also a chance to meet new people. I will always remember my time at Talerang as an important learning experience.

-Kanika Jain

Internship Experience at Talerang

At Talerang, I was in charge of two projects – the weekly internship newsletter and social media marketing. During my internship, Talerang’s Facebook page reached 10,000 likes. We created deadline posts that brought in many applications for the Campus Delegate position and the Talerang immersion program. We came up with several themes for the Facebook posts that could be used in the future.

Aashna - TickerI improved my written communication through the Facebook posts and newsletter, and I polished my verbal communication through the phone pitches for Talerang’s program. Since I was working at a start up, I had a great level of responsibility and accountability. The execution plan helped me carry out my tasks efficiently. I learnt how to complete my work before the given deadline.

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Photo: Aashna (third from the left) with internship manager Kartik Chaturvedi (fifth from the left) from Talerang. 

Talerang’s team was young and cheerful; they were willing to teach me even the smallest of tasks. I worked with Apurva Damani and Kartik Chaturvedi during my internship. The managers acted as mentors and guided us on becoming work-ready for the future. I realized that weekly feedback should be taken seriously.

I truly enjoyed my work, it was an insightful experience!

-Aashna Bhimani

 

Internship Experience at HBS IRC

My main project at the Harvard Business School India Research Centre was to manage and update ShareSite, an online archive of the research cases, and create an inventory. Additionally, I had to gather data, conduct research, create exhibits for certain topics, and create a research brochure for the center.

Rahael - TickerThe internship was a holistic learning experience. I learned that a positive attitude benefits everyone, and that each task should be given its due importance. Initially, managing an online archive seemed like a task of relatively less importance but it ended up being one of my major projects as it supported other projects.

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I organized my work effectively through applying Stephen Covey’s time management matrix, which I learned about at Talerang. I had a good professional relationship with the team. Everyone involved wanted my internship to be productive and insightful. The managers took keen interest in assigning high quality projects that gave me the right exposure. I got the perfect opportunity to understand how a research center works.

-Rahael Mathew

 

Internship Experience at Eros Labs

I was a Research intern for Indulge, a discovery platform for services that Eros Labs was planning to launch. I researched the database for the potential back end of the product and looked at strategies for the sales division, three of which were finalized for the launch. I also worked on the pitch that would help with sales, and screened internship applications for Eros labs.

My relationship with my manager was comfortable. The atmosphere at Eros Labs was work-oriented and everyone was open and friendly. It was easy to fit in, which made me more productive. Each week brought a new experience since the product launch was close. I intensely researched the idea’s compatibility in the market before finalizing the idea. Through this, I developed confidence in the product and learnt how to highlight its unique features.

The Talerang training helped me greatly during the internship. I aimed to prioritize tasks carefully and ‘always stay in the second quadrant,’ which became difficult on days when I had multiple responsibilities. I also learnt the perfect way to make, review and screen a resume – this helped in screening the applications for interns from different colleges.

2 (1)One of my most important lessons was perfecting my communication skills. Additionally, one of the biggest takeaways from the training and internship was to be thorough with my work; nothing comes out of a job half done except chaos and the impression of being unprofessional.

-Mithila Velamala

 

My Talerang Journey

Talerang transformed me. Usually, people jump off a cliff and grow wings on the way down. But Talerang gave me the opportunity to grow my wings on the cliff.

Priyanka ShahI completed my Talerang summer internship at FoxyMoron, where the managers acted as my mentors and also gave me recognition for my ideas. Every week we had feedback sessions with the team leader and organizational partners, during which we could ask questions about the organization and industry. Work gave me the chance to meet new friends, where I realized the importance of making and sustaining connections at work.

I learnt how to stand up for my ideas and discover my own untested potential. One of my Facebook posts got 57,000 interactions and 54,000 likes, becoming one of Facebook’s top performing posts. My manager gave me the title of ‘Most hardworking Intern at work’ and offered me a full-time job after college.

Priyanka bloggThere are many things I learned at my internship. I learnt the value of proofreading all client emails and completing my work by the deadline. I had weekly feedback meetings with my manager to discuss areas in which I could improve. I also learned it’s best to be over-prepared, especially being well-researched on upcoming trends related to my work as it is handy during brainstorming sessions.

-Priyanka Shah

My Talerang Journey

I started off as a confused individual, unsure of my interests and unaware of my strengths and weaknesses. Through the course of the Talerang training, I was able to discover my passions and set goals to pursue them. At the end of the Talerang training, I was more confident and self-aware. It was a transformational journey after which there was no looking back.

Sharmi

The six weeks spent at Harvard Business School India Research Center gave me a sneak peek into the world’s number one business school. I was privileged to be a part of an amazing team. Their warm and welcoming work culture allowed me to develop connections. The diverse projects allowed me to explore various industries and enrich my experience. Undoubtedly, the best part of my internship was the time I attended a session on ‘Apple and Innovation’ by professor Tarun Khanna from HBS.

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Talerang Graduation (Mumbai 2015): Sharmi awarded Most Work-Ready  Photo: Sharmi (R) with internship manager, Rachna Chawla (L), from Harvard Business School’s India Research Center

At my internship, I realized the value of perfection and the importance of becoming the best at what I do. This perfection comes with having an eye for detail, which is definitely the 101 of the corporate world.

-Sharmi Sheth

Sharmi was awarded the Most Work Ready Student at Talerang’s graduation ceremony (Mumbai 2015). This was based on her performance during the work-readiness training and internship program.

Internship Experience at Bottega di Lungavita

As an intern at Bottega di Lungavita, I worked on the company’s expansion. I contacted dermatologists and reached out to the consumer base through the online marketing platform, MailChimp. I represented the company at various events and assisted my colleagues in handling online orders. I maintained the company’s margin details, designed descriptive cards and contacted possible partners with business proposals.

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There were many instances during my internship when I was assigned work of which I had no prior knowledge. This taught me how to deal with new situations and develop my abilities. At first I found corporate communication difficult but I developed my communication skills through meetings with famous dermatologists and large companies. I had attended ten meetings with dermatologists along with my manager, after which my manager asked me to conduct a meeting by myself. I hesitated as I wasn’t confident about my abilities yet my manager encouraged me and ultimately, the meeting was a success. After this I learnt that I shouldn’t make assumptions about my abilities without facing the situation.

My term at Bottega di Lungavita was very challenging for me but my manager guided me whenever I needed her. She cleared my misconceptions about my abilities, and helped me to develop confidence in myself and realize my potential. There were times when I was demotivated and tried leaving the internship. But my colleagues taught me that one’s career graph will not always slope upwards; it will be a combination of wins and losses. The losses shouldn’t make one quit but should strengthen one for the future.

– Kiran Chawda

My Talerang Journey – Arushi Gupta

Talerang provided me with a once-in-a-lifetime experience and introduced me to several new things such as goal setting, corporate ethics and the elevator pitch. It taught me all the minute details that hold a great deal of influence in the corporate world.

My internship at Javian Travels was a great learning experience. My work included everything from content management to exploring new websites and applications. My love for travel made my internship experience even more exciting! My mentors were supportive and helped me complete my internship. I can never forget the day I received my first stipend cheque. I will always remember my parents’ pride.

One key takeaway from my journey at Talerang was how to communicate effectively. I also learned that no matter how many hurdles you face, the right attitude will help you complete your work on time.

– Arushi Gupta