I'm currently enrolled in an MS/PhD integrated program in a school in Korea. I was originally planning to study in the US, but I wasn't confident that I'd get funding and the lab/advisor that I'd met at my home school fit with me well.
After having a meet up session with the advisor, things were great for the past year or so. I was able to study and do research (mainly help PhD's with their projects while thinking about what I want to do). All was good but recently the professor has become more of a businessman than a researcher. He's hardly at school and is always attending meetings or networking events. There is barely any supervision or guidance. I read this Quora answer and it reminded me of my advisor.
I'm not here to judge another person's personal life choices, but I feel like I need some insight into what to do in these situations because it's been quite distressful as myself and many others in the lab are being forced to work on projects that bring in funding, which are usually irrelevant to our own interests.
Many of my peers have brought up how they're thinking of changing advisors to other professors within the same department, some have outright said they're thinking of dropping out and looking for a job. It was manageable before, because we would just be able to take care of tasks and do our own thing. However, the funding situation of the lab has recently become a bit more dire and hence the desperation on the professor's side.
I don't want to quit, I love the environment of a lab and school. How should a graduate student approach his advisor regarding conflicting research interests? I've tried to talk to him about it before, but it didn't go too well (he was mostly reluctant to let me do my own research). Is there any particular way that I should be approaching this issue? Thanks in advance.
Just for some background information, I'm enrolled in computer science and do research on machine learning/deep learning.