Meet the EPGP Class of 2023: Harshad P. Bhoir, IIM Bangalore

Harshad P. Bhoir

Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore

“Strategic by Nature, Engineer by Heart, Simple by Choice, and Dog parent for life.”

Hometown: Thane, Maharashtra

Fun Fact About Yourself: I did a 3-month internship at the age of 30 to learn more about the e-commerce industry.

Undergraduate School and Major: Veermata Jijabai Technological Institute Mumbai – B. Tech in Civil Engineering

Most Recent Employer and Job Title:

Services and Trade Co. LLC – Muscat, Oman

Manager – Strategy & Innovation (CEO’s Office)

Aside from your classmates, what was the key part of IIM Bangalore’s MBA programming that led you to choose this business school and why was it so important to you? The electives – the number of options that IIM Bangalore offers in terms of the electives is unmatched by any other institute. Moreover, the faculty conducting these electives are or have been industry experts, so it’s not just the academic flavor that you derive out of the hours spent learning these programs.

One of the best and least spoken of part of the elective terms is that you get to decide your own calendar for the last 2 terms depending on your elective choices. This way you are in complete control of your time to be invested in beyond the classroom learning, readings, application and research.

What has been your favorite course or extracurricular activity at IIM Bangalore? What has been the most important lesson that you have learned from it? Being someone passionate about the Indian Real estate market, I have always felt that I understand the industry. However, that changed in the very first session of the Real Estate Investment Management course, which made me realize that the lens I had was probably very narrow. Prof. Venky helped us elevate that lens to a 30,000-foot level to get a fresh perspective of the Indian real estate industry.

Describe your biggest accomplishment in your career so far: Stepping down from where I was already in my career – I believe is my biggest achievement so far. Working as the strategy manager to the CEO’s office (Something like an EA) came with a lot of exposure, responsibility, and (to some extent) even authority— all at the age of 30. Then, I quit all that to come down to India for an MBA with IIM Bangalore.

I call this an accomplishment because it wasn’t easy to leave behind a life, that I had built over 6 years. The change was drastic, but equally necessary. I went from driving a 3.5V6 to a 1.5V4, from my office cabin to being the classroom desk and from board rooms to break-out room. There have been some serious downshifts. Yet, none of what I have learnt at IIMB in the last 6 months, would have been possible unless I had given these things.

Describe your biggest accomplishment as an MBA student so far: I launched a dog food start-up in March of 2022, monetizing my 2-year experience as a pet parent who cooked for his furry. It’s a subscription-based model, which has over 8 products in the menu ranging across 4 different proteins. Our product has the highest nutritional level of all products available in the market by not just using human grade meats, but rather using the entire bird/fish to ensure a perfect natural balance of proteins, fats and minerals. The products were designed in a way that only ingredients common to the Indian household kitchen would be used. This was based on the principle that our pets should eat what is suited for the weather of the place.

Within two months of running a pilot in a micro market, we went from zero to 8 subscriptions, with zero complaints and zero drop-outs. The whole idea was to have a parallel avenue to apply and test possible learnings from the course in my everyday life, like making operational improvements, or creating pricing strategies.

What is your class’s favorite hangout away from school? Why do you gather there? My favorite hang-out is my home. We gather there mostly because of three reasons. First, I am a good cook, and food is the best way to great conversations. Second, my wife is the best host one could ask for. Third, having a golden retriever at home is like having a magnet with de-stressing abilities. MBAs, especially when packed into a year, aren’t easy on you. Having a dog is probably the best way of getting rid of all the stress.

What led you to pursue an MBA at this point and what do you hope to do after graduation? The goal is T-shaped Growth. Starting my carrier in an area of specialization, to working a role with horizontal reach across the organization, made me understand more-and-more about how businesses work. That raised my appetite for learning more about other businesses because I believe business nuances do not really change across industries.

What advice would you give to help potential applicants gain admission into IIM Bangalore? It is important to understand that you didn’t get in because you were better than the other applicants but because you were different from them. Being different means the unique ‘YOU’, and only together with the others did you make the class a more complete experience. It might so happen that when you land here, you see a lot of different and amazing individuals. Again, don’t forget you are one of them. With that said, it is extremely important you build new things around who you already are because your core is probably the strongest of your suits. MBA isn’t about reinventing the wheel, but about improving what you already have.


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