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Indian Management Personalities - A Synopsis
chillibreeze writer — Rachana Mallya, MBA
They say the ‘pen is mightier than the sword’. The power of words is so intense it can cut through systems, strategies, operations and perception of masses. That’s the force of verbal expression. When words are expressed with clarity, vision and profound perceptions they evolve into management thoughts and principles. People with this gift then become what we have phrased ‘Management Gurus’. Internationally there are renowned personalities known for their management concepts and practices. The likes of such ‘management celebrities’ are Tom Peters, Edward DeBono, Philip Kotler, Peter Senge, Bob Watermann, Stephen Covey and many more.
Micro-scoping on India, we too have prominent ‘Management Gurus’, from legends to contemporary trend setters. But before we delve into our journey on their works, a noticeable fact is that these business thinkers have studied, travelled, worked, operated, managed and made their presence felt in many parts of the globe.
Follow these links for quick glimpse of each author:
If you wish to refer to one of the greatest Indian business thinkers, C.K. Prahalad should be on the top of your list. He needs no introduction; every management student in India and internationally knows the name C.K. Prahalad. He is known not only for his prolific works also for his management perceptions and strategies.
CK Prahalad is a professor, researcher, speaker, author and prominent consultant. Business Week has called him “a brilliant teacher at the University of Michigan” and also described him as “maybe the most influential thinker on business strategy today.”
In addition to serving as the Harvey C. Freuhauf Professor of Business Administration at the University Of Michigan Business School, Prahalad specializes in corporate strategy and the role of top management in large, diversified, multinational corporations.
In 1994 he co-authored the bestseller, Competing for the Future, with Gary Hamel. Translated into 14 languages, it was named the Best Selling Business Book of the Year in 1994. Prahalad is particularly well known for the work he has conducted with fellow strategy expert Gary Hamel. This includes the articles The Core Competence of the Corporation (Harvard Business Review, May-June, 1990), Competing in the New Economy: Managing Out of Bounds (Strategic Management Journal, Vol. 17, No. 3, March, 1996) as well as the bestselling book Competing for the Future: Breakthrough Strategies for Seizing Control of Your Industry and Creating the Markets of Tomorrow (1994).
He has won numerous awards. The most recent include the McKinsey Prize three times, the SMR-PWC award, and the ANBAR Electronic Citation of Excellence.
A prominent world-class guru, Professor Prahalad has consulted with the world's foremost companies, such as Ahlstrom, AT&T, Cargill, Citicorp, Eastman Chemical, Kodak, Oracle, Philips, Quantum, Revlon, Steelcase, and Unilever. In addition, he serves on the Board of Directors of NCR Corporation, Hindustan Lever Limited and the World Resources Institute and services on the Board of Directors of NCR Corporation, Hindustan Lever Limited and the World Resources Institute.
His latest book, ‘The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid: Eradicating Poverty Through Profits’, proves that the future will develop from serving the poor, because the innovations that are developed are superior-- top quality, low price, high volume and world-scale. Only the best innovations will work for both sides of the equation, those in poverty and those in the “developed” countries.
Books by C.K. Prahalad
C.K. Prahalad is also the author of numerous award-winning articles. Harvard Business Review awarded the McKinsey Prize to him three times for the following articles:-
More often than not, a journalist’s viewpoint is considered to be critical, biased and dynamic. But a journalist with a PhD in business history is a potentially intense combination. This profile describes, Gita Piramal an author who has written for many years on the corporate sector for leading Indian and international publications such as the Financial Times and the Economic Times, and is a consulting editor of the World Executive’s Digest. She also has been involved in the making of television programmes on Indian business for the BBC and Plus Channel. In 1986, she co-authored India’s Industrialists, and in 1991 contributed to Business and Politics in India—A historical perspective, published by the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad. She divides her time between London and Mumbai.
Through her works, she describes the Indian corporate sector with Indian historical and political references as the foundation. How earlier systems have an influence on contemporary operations and radical changes or ‘Business Mantras’ required to keep abreast in this dynamic environment.
Gita Piramal is one of India’s foremost business writers. She is now the managing editor of The Smart Manager, India’s first world-class management magazine.
Books by Gita Piramal
If you attempt to visualize a mentor, an author and a consultant in one being you are sure to find one personality, Sumantra Ghoushal. Born in India, educated in the US and currently living in Europe, he is a teacher, author and consultant in the field of international management. He is also founding dean of the Indian School of Business in Hyderabad, a new venture jointly sponsored by Northwestern University and the London Business School.
He has published eight books, over forty-five articles and several award-winning case studies. The book “Managing across Borders: The Transnational Solution”, co-authored with Christopher A. Bartlett, has been listed as one of the fifty most influential management books and they have become one of the world's most respected business thinkers.
His most recent work focuses on the need to develop strategy which encompasses people. He has been critical of the current fad for knowledge management.
Books by Sumantra Ghoushal
* (co-authored with Christopher A. Bartlett)
If you want to know how to strip down a concept to its core meaning and then put it into action, you should consider the works of Ram Charan. He is a highly acclaimed business advisor, speaker, and author. Ram has coached some of the world's most successful CEOs. For 35 years, he has worked behind the scenes at companies like GE, KLM, Bank of America, DuPont, Novartis, EMC, Home Depot and Verizon.
Ram is a favourite among executive educators. He won the Bell Ringer (best teacher) award at GE's famous Crotonville Institute. He won similar awards at Wharton and Northwestern. He was among Business Week's top ten resources for in-house executive development programs.
Apart from authoring fine books, he also tailors his books for specific client companies such as Gateway, Ford, and EDS. His articles have been published in Harvard Business Review, Fortune, Time, Information Week, Leader to Leader, Director's Monthly, Directorship, The Corporate Board and USA Today. Ram is a director of Austin Industries and The Six Sigma Academy.
He was elected a Fellow of the National Academy of Human Resources. He serves as a co-host for the Fortune Forum on Corporate Governance and also serves on the National Association of Corporate Directors' Blue Ribbon Commission on Corporate Governance.
He is known for his practical, real world perspective. His expertise entails areas of business like: Profitable Growth, Business Acumen, Leadership, Execution: Discipline of Getting Things Done, Tools for Changing a Social System, Global Matrix Organization, Innovation, Corporate Governance, Succession & Leadership Pipeline, Building Top Management Teams.
Books by Ram Charan
Speaking of contemporary business thinkers, another fine entrepreneur, educator, author and enterprising personality is Arindham Chaudhuri.
Professor Chaudhuri is the Dean, Centre for Economic Research & Advanced Studies at IIPM (The Indian Institute of Planning & Management, New Delhi). In the year 1996 he founded Planman Consulting which is now one of the fastest growing Indian Management Consulting Firms. After being associated with the production and marketing of two Bengali movies, in the year 2001 he formally launched Planman Life: A fully dedicated production and communications venture.
His latest book ‘Count Your Chickens Before They Hatch’ for which he got an unprecedented seven figure record advance has created a new benchmark in India by selling more than 80,000 copies in just 8 months! It has been in all national best seller lists from the first week of inception, till date.
As a management consultant he specializes in the areas of Strategic Vision, Leadership, Social Sector Consulting, Comparative Management Techniques and Global Opportunities & Threat Analysis.
His contribution to the field of management studies in India can be found in the iconoclastic “Theory ‘ i ’ Management” which he has developed for India Inc. “Theory ‘i’ Management” is about India centric management ideas. For the last few years he has been conducting workshops on Leadership and Strategic Vision exclusively for CEOs, MDs, Directors and Presidents from the corporate sector. From the Managing Director of Hero Motors to the President of Tata Chemicals, from the Executive President of A.V. Birla Group to the CEO of Ernst & Young… have all taken leadership training workshops from him. As a celebrated speaker he is regularly invited to speak at various annual conferences and national conventions. He also happens to be highest paid speaker in the country.
An economist by passion and education, during Bill Clinton’s historic visit to India he launched his Great Indian Dream -: India can beat America, a series of seminars for every Indian. Held in all the metros of India, these seminars had thousands of people pouring in from all walks of life. In these seminar’s he not only highlights the inherent strengths of the Indian culture but also talks about an alternative resource mobilization and allocation package for an Indian turnaround. To facilitate social activities based on this he has started the Great Indian Dream Foundation in memory of his brother Aurobindo Chaudhuri.
He was recently rated as one of the 50 leading thinkers in South Asia by Wilton Park (an organisation supported by the European Commission and British foreign office).
Further, he was awarded the Academic Gold Medal while completing the Post Graduate Diploma in Planning and Management from IIPM. Prof. Chaudhuri was awarded “Management Guru 2000 Award” by Chennai based Om Venkatesa Society which annually honours management experts.
Books by Arindham Chaudhuri
Have you ever been in a situation when your need a trigger to propel those business thoughts? The answer lies in a think tank that provides distilled wisdom of finest minds, ‘Management Thoughts’. This book was written by Promod Batra, which was a new concept in 1991 and the first of its kind in the world. It is a collection of simple management thoughts, supplemented with full page illustrations by Mickey Patel, a cartoonist of repute. It has sold over 2,00,000 copies in India and abroad a record by itself.
Promod Batra got his professional training with General Mills Inc., Minneapolis , Minnesota, and the Soyabean Council of America. On return to India he joined Escorts Limited in 1963, and retired as Chief General Manager in 1996. His tenure with the Escorts Group included his assignment as Chief Administrator at Escorts Heart Institute & Research Centre for six years. He is now devoting full time to writing, publishing and selling books on Management of Self, Family Employees and Customers, and conducting Attitudinal Seminars based on his books
A co-author with Promod Batra is Vijay Batra, the first non-Japanese to join Kankaku Securities as a lifetime employee. In 1994, he was promoted to Vice President of the New York branch. During his tenure with Kankaku Securities, he was directly involved with various Japanese and American companies. From 1997 to 1998, he returned to India for a one year period to study the Indian situation with the objective to create seminar and training programmes suitable for Indian professionals. Vijay Batra has succeeded in creating a relationship with PHP, a think tank affiliated with Matsushita Electric Industry. The relationship with PHP will allow Think Inc. to introduce fundamentals of Japanese management to Indian professionals.
Books by Promod Batra
In this dog-eat-dog business world, if you are not self motivated, self confident and unique, you WILL be trampled over. At such times look into the works of the distinguished management guru and motivator, Shiv Khera.
His gospel:- "Winners don’t do different things, they do things differently”
Shiv Khera is the founder of Qualified Learning Systems Inc. An educator, business consultant, a much sought after speaker and a successful entrepreneur. He has taken his dynamic personal message around the world. Shiv has been recognized as a "Louis Marchesi Fellow" by the Round Table Foundation. His client list includes the who’s who of the corporate world.
He has authored three bestsellers, amongst other books. His first book “You Can Win”, which came out in 1998, has sold over a million copies worldwide. His second book “Living With Honour” hit the stands in August 2003, becoming an instant bestseller. Then within a span of six months in February 2004, his third book “Freedom Is Not Free” was released, also to become a bestseller.
His first two books are on an individualistic level, where he defines the winning edge as achieving excellence rather than perfection, as excellence paves the way for progress. He also conveys that it is better to be honourable than to be honoured. His work offers direction for living with pride in a cluttered environment. His latest book concentrates on society. Here he firmly believes that a progressive society is the basis for individual progress of its people.
Transforming his years of experience as a motivator into a practical tool, he has developed a core program/workshop known as the Blueprint for Success (BPS). This program motivates people to recognize their true potential and gain success - personally and professionally.
Books by Shiv Khera
Apart from the prominent business thinkers mentioned above, India also presents other management thinkers who have a substantial influence on business minds and operations. To name a few:-
Co-opting Customer Competence (co-authored with C.K. Prahalad)
The Art of Developing Leaders at Kraft
Alexander the Great’s Art of Strategy
Sack the CEO!
Damodaran on Valuation
The phrase “Management Guru’ describes a person who is intellectual, experienced, ingenious and a person who develops business perspectives that provide beneficial outlooks and practices. With reference to the adage ‘An idea is only a thought until it is materialised’, the most successful Business Thinkers are those who have ensured the successful implementation of their thoughts.
In the past, the benefit of such resourceful business practices was limited to only those people who were privileged to have communication links with knowledgeable business tycoons. But currently in India, the exposure has broadened. Perspectives and practices of Indian business personalities are now made available to almost anyone in the form of workshops and seminars. So with an open mind, think ‘WOW’, act now and pay attention and participate with our Management Personalities who are willing to impart their knowledge.
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