Ratul Banerjee has a passion for the triple bottom line — organizing profit, people and planet. He is one of a growing band of business school students who are exploring their impact on society. And ESADE, one of Spain’s top schools, has been the perfect spot to assess his career goals.
The Barcelona based university is a leader in this area. It’s Institute for Social Innovation aims to hone the skills of individuals and businesses to strengthen their contribution to building a fair and sustainable world.
Ratul says this is one of the school’s “core missions”. Before enrolling in the MBA this year, he was a project manager at the International Monetary Fund, where, based in Washington, he led IT services. He has worked across the international development industry, including in a consultancy post at the World Bank, and at the US Department of Transportation.
Previously, he worked for US mortgage company Fannie Mae, software group BMC and at the IT consultancy, Tata Consultancy Services.
How important is it for companies to align profit with people and planet — the triple bottom line?
It is very important for companies to align profit with people and the planet so that not only are they profitable, but also socially responsible and environmentally sound in their practices.
Now more than ever, companies are being evaluated on the scales of sustainability. Future generations’ investor confidence will not depend on profit alone. Companies should adopt a perspective of seeing this as an opportunity rather than a challenge.
Companies that drive home profitable growth attribute a lot of that to their management practice. Companies need to incorporate sustainability values and accountability in their management practices. A shinning triple bottom line will result in better reputation and more holistic stakeholder satisfaction and confidence.
How did your MBA at ESADE Business School fit into this?
One of ESADE’s core missions is social responsibility. The MBA at ESADE Business School takes a very holistic approach in preparing the managers of the future, who can make significant contributions to society’s needs.
I believe the opportunities in training and social debate that students receive at ESADE will help prepare them to be aware of their responsibilities as citizens and professionals.
What career prospects do international development organizations like the IMF and World Bank offer MBAs?
International development is increasingly becoming an area of interest for MBA students, as they want to better the conditions around the world by applying their business knowledge. The World Bank and the IMF are prestigious and reputable institutions. Through the World Bank’s Young Professionals Program, it recruits the brightest MBA students from around the world.
You’ve worked with Fannie Mae, Johnson & Johnson and more. What’s been your favorite private sector project and why?
I have worked for several private sector clients and I have learned a lot at each place. My favorite one has been my first project, at Johnson and Johnson. I had the chance to learn a lot about their business model. The global nature of the project, plus the amazing team of people made the experience very memorable.
You took Harvard's HBX CORe. What’s your assessment of the program and the online learning environment?
Its online learning platform is one of the best I have seen. It lets you connect with peers in your cohort through the online system, making the learning collaborative.
What do ESADE MBAs do for fun in Barcelona?
Barcelona is rich in history, culture and love of football. “Esadeans”, coming from almost 50 countries, quickly find themselves at home because of the cosmopolitan nature of the city.
We have fun enjoying the city’s amazing food offerings, walking around [and] discovering different monuments or parks, football games at Camp Nou, and spending time at the beach.
Apart from this, we also have fun celebrating festivals like Diwali, supporting and promoting various causes such as Movember and arranging various campus activities such as GastroFest and the ESADE Innovation Summit.