12 Students of Faculty of Management Sciences at Shri Ram Murti Smarak College of Engineering and Technology, Bareilly learned the ropes of the real-life corporate world as they were a part of the Live Marketing Project for students at ITC Ltd. What made the experience even more unique was the fact that first-year students had the opportunity to work with one of the powerhouses of Indian industry at a such an early stage of their management learning experience.
As a part of the live project lasting ten days, each of the students was assigned a general store that stocked ITC products. Not only did they have to interact with store owners and teams but consumers as well. As one of the students, Shrestha Kapoor says, “Every management student should have the experience of dealing with consumers. The project was hands-on training in understanding consumer behavior and market scenario.” As they improvised and devised their own strategies they got first-hand knowledge of how things function in the real world.
Another important aspect of learning during the project was understanding market competition and overcoming it. Besides promotional activities and sales, they also had to keep the records of opening and closing stock. It made them realize the importance of every little aspect in functioning of a company. According to Yash Shobhit, “Good quality and packaging is the USP of ITC products as they do not compromise on that. Generating sales is all about a combined effort of different teams taking care of their responsibilities.”
It was interesting that in spite, of working individually in different stores, the students had learned the significance of teamwork. While they focused on ways to deal with market competition, they understood the importance of creating awareness about their own brands. The live project coincided with the launch of ITC’s new products – Sugar-Free Atta and B Natural Juice. Sagar Srivastava believes, “The challenge is to make retailers and consumers aware that they offer top quality, health-conscious products.”
As they managed different responsibilities, the students themselves had lived up to the challenge they were faced with during the Live Project and came back with valuable experience for their future professional journeys. As Vansh Bhatnagar summed it up, “The live project offered us the real-life experience of handling customers, taught us tools to interact with them, get market exposure and understand other management functions. It was a well-rounded journey that prepared us for the road ahead.” That it certainly did.