Panel with Prof. Anand Narasimhan

With many experts downplaying the scenario of teachers being muscled out of the profession by robots, it’s still clear that their role in the classroom will change over the years.

But, a teacher will still need to be a good teacher, to get the very best out of their students.

Anand Narasimhan is the Shell Professor of Global Leadership and Dean of Faculty and Research at IMD, the business school for management and leadership courses based in Lausanne. He is also a Board Member at ISL. He’s won numerous awards for his teaching style, so is a good person to explain what exactly makes a good teacher.

“Modesty is important,” said Anand. “Try to forget that you can teach and remember your responsibility to help others learn.

“My story is a case in point: I came from a didactic background in India. In the Asian system you are taught. I learned in my own journey to the US that, as a doctoral student, I had always been TAUGHT: you are a student in the system that you follow. When I went to America, I relied on my supervisor to tell me which courses to take. He laughed and told me it’s up to me. I would sum it up like this for teachers: Transcend your need to “teach” and help students learn.”

While the way people teach is important, Anand also has advice for students to become better learners. He said: “They must have the curiosity to meet challenges. Curiosity is important. The point you stop learning is when you think you know everything. You cannot know everything because the world is constantly changing. Teachers also need to have the humility to learn, to be open to feedback and to learn from it.”

Gradient Issue #2: The magazine of the International School of Lausanne

In this edition, we explore how our community has coped during this special year to make the best of it. We also have a special section on multilingualism and how it can both benefit and challenge our students.