I was delighted recently to be invited to lecture, as a Visiting Professor, at the very highly rated Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Rohtak, in the state of Haryana, about 50km from New Delhi. IIM Rohtak is a public business school, established in the year 2010 as one of the six new IIMs announced under the 11th Five Year Plan of the Indian Government. It offers undergraduate and postgraduate courses, to MBA level, has a great number of PhD students, and runs executive programmes in management.
I was invited to lecture on the management and marketing of sports museums. I am widely regarded as the leading academic and professional expert on sports museums in the world. I have published a number of academic papers on sports museums and have a book on the subject coming out later this year. It was a great pleasure to teach on this subject to a terrific group of students on the Executive Postgraduate Programme in Sports Management. This is the first year this programme has run at Rohtak or indeed any IIM. Rohtak was asked to take the lead in developing this programme, as Haryana State is very much seen as a if not the hotbed of Indian sport. It was a very great pleasure to meet the esteemed scholar, Professor Dheeraj Sharma, the Director of IIM Rohtak, who explained the particular significance of sport at IIM Rohtak.
The students on the programme are all highly knowledgeable on sport, some have achieved at the highest level in their sports. All will look forward to a great career in sports management. Many of the students are very keen football fans and have a highly detailed, (indeed exceptional!) knowledge of English football. I was not entirely surprised at this. Chapter 45 of my new book, What You Think You Know About Football is Wrong: The Global Game’s Greatest Myths and Untruths, is titled ’Football in India is NOT new – and has a greater tradition than cricket’!
At Rohtak, I also had the very great pleasure of being asked to address the large (about 150) highly talented group of MBA students, and a group of PhD programme students. They asked highly perceptive questions – including on the business of football.
The whole experience was intellectually very engaging. The architecture on site is highly impressive, including a fabulous soon to be opened new library, and there is widespread use of India’s national bird, the peafowl (peacock) in the design. Unfortunately, I took English weather with me to Rohtak – and one evening got so lost in the fog I had to be rescued and taken back to my room! But most days the sun burned the fog away. I greatly enjoyed the hospitality, including the FOUR meals a day – from 5pm to 6pm each day is ‘snack time’!
It was great to get some very positive feedback from the students about my sessions, including:
“Your work is an inspiration to all of us. It was wonderful to meet you and attend your sessions.”
“Thank you very much for your great insights. It was really great learning, with new insights.”
“A pleasure meeting and learning from you. Thank you so much.”
“It was a pleasure to be taught by you. Looking forward to many other intriguing classes from you. Thank you.”
“it was great having you here at campus. We loved your expertise sessions!”
“Fantastic human being with first-hand experience in the subject. Thank you for coming and making this week great for our entire class.”
I now deliver some lectures online from the UK, I but have also already been invited back for next year – can’t wait to go!
The terrific group of students (and me!) on the Executive Postgraduate Programme in Sports Management.
When I got lost in the fog….