IIM Indore students get corporate lessons through Himalayan Outbound Programme
Team Careers360, 27 Dec 2017, #IIM Indore
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Beyond classrooms, management students of IIM Indore prepare for the corporate world in an exciting way – a high-altitude trek in the Himalayas. Triti Zalka, a student of IIM Indore shares the experience of this high altitude trek with Careers360.  Read the complete article below to know more about outdoor learning while pursuing your management education.


If you want the best management education in India, you go to the Indian Institutes of Management. If you want the best life experience in the world, you go to the Himalayas! Luckily for the students of Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Indore, management and mountains go hand-in-hand. Since 2010, final year students of the Post Graduate Programme (PGP) have been putting their management knowledge and skills to the ultimate test—a strategy game in the Himalayas. The four credits course that is the six-day ‘Himalayan Outbound Programme’ is arguably the most fun and memorable part of the two-year curriculum. Just a few months before their placements, academics and adventure converge to create an unforgettable experience for these soon-to-be managers.

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From classrooms to outdoors

Conducted by Indiahikes, one of the country’s biggest trekking organisations, the high altitude trek includes activities especially designed to bring classroom learning to life in the great outdoors. Three days of trekking are followed by a final day of white water rafting down the Ganges. Students are divided into teams of 10, with groups of about 50 tackling different slopes. This year, they explored the captivating trails of Dayara Bugyal, Bedni Bugyal and Kedarkantha in Uttarakhand, reaching summits as high as 12,500 feet. At such a height, resources are limited, terrain is tough, weather is unpredictable and the very air you breathe is thin. It is in this backdrop that students compete.

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“We’ve always been interested in high altitude treks. It takes us out of our academic setting and puts us in a new and challenging setting,” believes Prof. Swapnil Garg. For the Strategic Management professor at IIM, Indore, who accompanied students on the Dayara Bugyal trek, the experience was outstanding. “It teaches them how to address challenges when put in real life scenarios where they can experiment with many things they’ve learnt in their classes,” adds Prof. Garg.


Experiential leadership training

Working through tasks in such a stimulating environment brings about experiential leadership training. Along with mustering copious amounts of perseverance, endurance, confidence and grit, students also get a chance to work on team-building, problem-solving, effective communication and strategising in the face of real challenges.

Virtual ‘mountain money’ is used throughout the game, which culminates in teams with the highest amount winning. Teams bid on various activities, stategising to increase their funds. This approach, which is quite innovative, reiterates fundamental concepts of finance, accounting and budgeting to the managers in-the-making.


Developing real life skills

As fierce as they are formidable, the mighty slopes of the Himalayas present a uniquely challenging landscape for students to develop real life management skills. “From the moment they arrive, till the time they leave, they are working with their teams,” explains Swathi Chatrapathy, who was among the Game Masters from Indiahikes conducting the strategy game this year. Take the ‘Race to the Top’ challenge, for instance. Students had to cooperate and work together as a team to race from one campsite to another, overcoming obstacles along the way. This saw stronger team-mates stepping up to help their struggling peers by carrying their bags and motivating them.

In another task of ‘Survival in the Wild’, students were expected to build a fire and cook a meal with limited resources – all in just 90 minutes and with only three matchsticks. Other activities included packing relays, water relays, setting up of tents, collection and segregation of waste.


Collecting ‘green points’

Students could also pick up extra ‘green points’ by collecting litter off the slopes in their ‘eco bags’. Back at the campsite, they would put on their thinking hats and come up with innovative ways to make the best out of waste. This year, students built small stools by ‘upcycling’ waste. This involved stuffing plastic bottles with other non-biodegradable waste to create sturdy ‘bottle bricks’. Impressed by its durability, Indiahikes is considering adapting the stools for their kitchen staff at base camps, who work tirelessly to provide the delicious food students and trekkers so love. In the way of social good, students were also required a make a presentation on how to address the various problems in the mountains after spending some time with local villagers at the outset.


Team building

While students became more sensitive to the world around them, they also became more empathetic and understanding towards their peers. “You don’t get a perfect team, you have to build one,” says Dushyant Sharma, a trek leader with Indiahikes. Five days of trekking, working and living in such close quarters with teammates goes a long way in forging bonds and balancing group dynamics. “We all complemented each other. Some were good at cooking, some were good with making the best out of waste,” says Harsh Govind Paunikar, a student from of one of the winning teams. As students learnt team work, strangers became friends, and experiences became memories of a lifetime.

Students also learn the much-needed virtue of time management. “Punctuality is everything in the mountains,” says Chatrapathy, who is also Chief Editor at Indiahikes. Thankfully, waking up to a steaming cup of ‘bed tea’ on chilly mountain mornings means students were up early and energised to take on the day’s challenges. They were involved in activities right from 5AM to 10:30 PM. “They’re all out of their comfort zones, they’re cold, they’re tired after a long day of trekking, yet they’re ready for another task. It’s amazing!” exclaims Sharma, who has been leading IIM treks for four years. The moment when students reach the summit and see the beauty of the Himalayas is special. The smiles on their faces say it all. “Only after a hard climb do you cherish a moment more. At this point, they realise they’ve got the potential to make that climb.” Both in its literal and metaphorical sense, the ‘climb’ brings about immense transformation.


Discovering the hero within

Students may have competed against each other, but they have also triumphed over themselves. “Everyone is the hero of their own life, one just needs to discover that hero within. I rediscovered myself on this journey,” beams Paunikar, who realised his leadership potential through the mountain tasks. Amidst hours of intense action, emerged moments of introspection and reflection, empathy and compassion. Students moved from strength to strength towards personal growth and individual learning. “We were focussed on winning over ourselves, not others,” recounts Paunikar. He believes it applies to business as well, where you have to constantly better yourself, and play on your own strengths and skills to emerge as competent leaders.

Out in the Himalayas, students had to learn how to survive in the wild. How different is this from surviving in the corporate jungle? Not much at all. Swap mountains for offices, and you’re left with the same set of core kills and capabilities required for success—teamwork, problem-solving, cooperation, communication, time management, HR management, budgeting, strategy, creativity, innovation and leadership.


Practices abroad

Mountains and high-altitude treks are not uncharted terrain in management education. As many as 30 years ago, Prof. Garg went on a similar expedition during his own training. Across the globe, London Business School’s Snow Club brings hundreds of students on annual ski trips to the Alps, and Kellogg School of Management has been known to take the biggest MBA ski trip in the Rocky Mountains. Later this year, IIM Lucknow and IIM Bangalore are also set to take on ‘Himalayan Mountain Challenge’ with Indiahikes.

“It is a very good crash course in management for the students. It reinforces everything they learn in their classrooms as they translate their management skills to real life in the mountains—where they deal with limited resources, strict timings and tight budgeting,” sums up Chatrapathy. A few years down the line, these students may not remember lectures in the classroom, useful as they are, but they will surely look back fondly at the memories of a trek in the Himalayas. Through this experience of a lifetime, learning becomes life-long.

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Questions related to IIM Indore

Showing 184 out of 184 Questions

date for admission form of IIM indore

Halry Bhalodia 13th Dec, 2019

Hello Aspirant,

IIM Indore admits about 120 students to the IPM every year. The students have to appear and qualify in all the three tests, i.e., Aptitude Test (AT), Written Ability Test (WAT) and Personal Interview. Only after qualifying all the three test, students will be granted admission to the IPM at IIM Indore. The important date for various events of IIM Indore IPM 2020 Admission is given in the table below:

Event Date
Registration for the test begins from Mar 2020
Last date to submit the application form Apr 2020
Issuance of Admit Card Last week of Apr 2020
IPM 2020 Test Date 30 Apr 2020
Declaration of Result 2nd week of May 2020
The interview will be conducted from Last week of May 2020
Declaration of Final Result 3rd week of Jun 2020

how much I need to score in CAT exam to get call from IIM indore

Loveena Gupta 12th Dec, 2019

Hy Anil

Well this is the most asked question after the CAT exam.

So to get a call from IIM INDORE , and if you belong to general category, your overall cut off in CAT exam should be 90 percentile and the sectional cut off is 80 percentile.

If you belong to ST/PWD your overall cut off should be 50 percentile and sectional cut off should be 45 percentile

If you belong to SC category then your overall cut off should be 60 percentile and the sectional cut off should be 55 percentile.

All of this data is according to previous year cutoffs as cut off from this year is not announced yet as the result is not out yet.

Also IIM I has quite different selection criteria categorising 70% weightage to class X and class XII scores,  20% to the CAT scores and the rest depends on GD/PI etc.

Good luck


What is a better option for a HSC Commerce student - IIM Indores 5 year IPM or first a B.Comm. from a reputed college like Narsee Monjee Mumbai, and then an MBA from IIM Indore ?

Yashu Shrivastava 4th Dec, 2019

Hello Sharth

I would prefer you to prepare for 5 years integrated program from IIM Indore.As IIM has its own brand name.It provides the chance of making it to the IIM when the competition is extremely less. While almost 2.1 lakh students appeared for CAT in 2018, only about 18,000 appeared for the IPM test in the same year. Comparing it with the B.Tech graduates who pursue an MBA after engineering and spend 6 years in doing so, IPM saves the students’ one year as it gets completed within a matter of 5 years.

So its better to do IPM instead of doing B.com (//B.com) from any reputed college.

Hope This Helps

Good Luck!



What is a better option for a student with Commerce stream in HSC- a 5 year IPM IIM Indore course or B.Com. from Narsee Monjee Mumbai (one of the best in the field) and then MBA from the older IIMs (ABC)? (assuming one can crack both)

rishabh5978@gmail.com 6th Dec, 2019

Hello there. Hope you are doing good. I would like to tell you that IPM course from IIM Indore is a better option rather than doing B.Com (//B.Com) from NMIMS and doing MBA later on. If you decide to do MBA later on, there are certain parameters which you need to follow such as scoring exceptionally well in your entrance exams such as CAT,MAT,NMAT,XAT etc. maintaining a good aggregate score in your graduation, participating in extra curricular activities, exceptional achievements and sometimes a good work experience is also needed to build a strong profile so as to improve your chances in getting a call from a top business school.

However, if you get the chance to pursue IPM Programme offered by IIM Indore, it will help you in landing a good job with high package at a lesser period of time. You will be able to possess knowledge of undergraduation and postgraduation management courses from a top notch business school in India.

My suggestion for you is to consider IIM Indore as an option if you are getting the opportunity to study there.

I hope you found this answer helpful. Good luck for your future.


Are any other IIMs (the older ones) going to start a 5 year Integrated Program in Management (IPM) like the one IIM INDORE and IIM Rohtak have started?

Yashu Shrivastava 4th Dec, 2019

Hey Saarth

There's no official news of any other IIM that will going to start 5 years integrated program (BBA+MBA).As per now there are only two IIMs that provide opportunity to do 5 years integrated program(IIM Indore & IIM Rohtak).But if you prepare well you can easily crack it.

Hope This Helps

Good Luck!

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