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Economic Times Corporate Dossier shares Best Selling Author Pavan Choudary's 5 Life Changing and Career building stories


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Economic Times Corporate Dossier shares Best Selling Author Pavan Choudary's 5 Life Changing and Career building stories These stories are from his best selling classic " How a Good Person can Really Win".

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Economic Times Corporate Dossier shares Best Selling Author Pavan Choudary's 5 Life Changing and Career building stories

  1. 1. Regn.No.MAHENG/2002/6295Volume13IssueNo.9“Publishedfortheproprietors,BennettColeman&Co.Ltd.byR.KrishnamurthyatTheTimesOfIndiaBuilding,Dr.D.N.Road,Mumbai400001Tel.(022)66353535,22733535,Fax-(022)22731144andprintedbyhimatTheTimesofIndiaSuburbanPress, AkurliRoad, WesternExpressHighway,Kandivli(E),Mumbai400101.TelNo:(022)28872324,28872930,FaxNo(022)28874230NaviMumbai-400708andPlotNo4,MIDC,DighaVillage,ThaneBelapurRoad,AiroliTel.(022)27609700 andEditor: VinodMahanta,(ResponsiblefortheselectionofnewsunderPRBAct).©Allrightsreserved.ReproductioninwholeorinpartwithoutthewrittenpermissionofthePublisherisprohibited.” Edit&Desk:Dibeyendu Ganguly, Moinak Mitra, Priyanka Sangani and Vinod Mahanta Design: Shubhra Dey, Sanjeev Raj Jain, Nitin Keer Corporate Dossier Friday April 11, 201404 and finally :: mario miranda The Term Strategy man Just sees wider view, can’t do detail. Motto OK, you can take it from here. The Term Sensitive Soul Cares deeply and manages the team by e-mail in case they something nasty The Term Workaholic Does everyone’s work for them, doesn’t trust anyone enough to actually delegate Motto I’ll do it The business of bullshitting has created several types of leaders, based on their recognizable traits. Here are a few of them :: coded transmission Compiled by Moinak Mitra DonaldJ.Trump@ realDonaldTrump Ask yourself: “What can I learn today that I didn’t know before?” Always be a student, always be open to new ideas marcusbuckingham @mwbuckingham You can’t be insecure and be a great team leader. Your insecurity will cause you to compete with your own people :: twitterama Tonyrobbins @tonyrobbins ‘Life is found in the dance between your deepest desire and your great- est fear.” ~ Tony Robbins Honesty is both a boon and a bane for the once darling of consumer electronics who found a new meaning with robots Founder & CEO, Milagrow TOUCH DOWN Rajeev Karwal Ho cco Just before applying for MBA, I met with an accident that left me with a fractured lumbar vertebra. While doctors advised bed rest for three months, I broke down. That incident steeled my resolve and I started writing my diary and reading books on management Rajeev Karwal launching the Philips wind-up radio in retaliation to cheap Chinese imports, in 2011 EDUCATION 1969-1972: Kendriya Vidyalaya, Chakeri, Kanpur—I went with my father to the market and stole a little brass weight from a shop. When the shopkeeper told my father, he had a huge loss of face. He didn’t show it then but when we got home, he made me draw seven lines on the floor with my nose. 1972-1978: Kendriya Vidyalaya, Air Force Academy, Dindigul—One of my friends drowned and since then I have developed fear of water. 1978-1980: Kendriya Vidyalaya, Bengdubi, Bagdodra 1980-81: Kendriya Vidyalaya, Ambala Cantt 1981-1982: B.Sc. with Biology from Gandhi Memorial National (GMN) College, Ambala—I was college hockey captain and even won the Mr GMN award for all-round perfor- mance. Just before applying for MBA, I met with an accident that left me with a fractured lumbar vertebra. While doctors advised bed rest for three months, I broke down. That incident steeled my resolve and I started writing my diary and reading books on management. 1982-1984: MBA from IMT Ghaziabad—I was among the top three in my batch and Dr CB Gupta, then director of the college, present- ed me with a book where he wrote—‘Life is like snow. Tread carefully because every step will show.’ WORK EXPERIENCE 1984-1992: Head-Sales & Marketing, Onida—In one of our internal meetings, someone suggested that we take cash from the market, which I resented. Ultimately, my decision was supported by the promoter, Sonu Mirchandani. I got cheated once by a West Delhi video library owner and that got etched in my mind. So much so, that till today, I don’t give unsecured credit. 1992-1996: Gerente Empresario (Business Head) of Hispano Kaycee & Chelsons of the Chelaram Group in Tenerife, Spain—Apart from learning to speak and write in Spanish, I learnt to do everything on my own since that was the culture there, much removed from India with drivers, servants and at- tendants. 1996-2000: Director-Sales & Marketing, LG India—I realized that I could not be MD of LG, which was being steered by KR Kim at that time. But here’s the catalyst. During the Kanwaria season, the UP market suffers and I explained this to Kim but someone from the logistics side poisoned him against me and convinced him that I was just making an excuse. So after Kim had a word with me, I decided to call it quits and left within two months. Today, Kim and I are great friends and he still rues that decision. LG abolished the post after my departure, and till date, it has not been filled. 2000-2003: Head of Consumer Electronics, Philips India—I worked closely with Frans Van Houten, who was heading APAC out of Singapore, and told him that one day, he would lead Philips globally. My prophecy came true and looking back, he’s the best boss I ever had. 2003-2006: MD, Electrolux Kelvinator—Of my 36 months with Electrolux, we had posi- tive cash flows for 30-odd months. So we turned around the company and sold it to Videocon. 2006-2007: President & CEO, Reliance Digital—I conceived the entire policy, pri- vate label and service framework for the company but left within a year as I was bit- ten by the entrepreneurial bug. 2007-present: Founder & CEO, Milagrow— Initially, we focused on consulting MSMEs but soon realized that either MSMEs were exploited or they exploit the system. So I decided to focus on an industry which would shape lives in the next century—ro- bots. Though we are just Rs 50-odd crore today, we are debt-free and don’t have private equity. Moreover, I haven’t paid a penny in bribe. Though we’re eyeing Rs 3,000 crore by 2019 by diversifying into segments, categories and markets, we’ll never compromise on honesty. Straight out of college, Rajeev sports the Mr GMN tag With sister Renu after recovering from a lumbar fracture, in 1982 The Karwals with two sons on their 25th wedding anniversary in Jan. this year @ mp t at e?” nt, rama Panoramic View: the ice capped Alps from a wonderful ski resort in Switzerland. Bon Vivant Moment: dinner in the African jungle in Serengeti, Tanzania. Indian Surprise: the royal treat- ment we got at a Rambaug Palace suite, with entertainment organ- ized exclusively for our family, Outdoorsy activity: trek off Kigali in Rwanda where we spent time with the last Mountain Gorillas family. Best Drive: Great Ocean Drive in Victoria, Australia. Gourmet gaffes: eating what I thought were sprouts when they actually were baby eels, in Shanghai. Street food Surprises: outstand- ing Shawarma from a roadside stall in midtown Manhattan. Best Bar: Tapas bars in Seville, Spain. Bazaar bargains: glass from Morano, Italy. Goofy traveller moment: missing a connection to Stockholm be- cause I underestimated the time it takes to change terminals at Heathrow. Traveller Tips: change time on your watch as soon as you land in a new country. Interesting stranger: Met a gen- tleman in an Italian panoramic train, near Florence, who knew so much about India and had a brilliant conversation with him on Osho Rajneesh. :: wanderlust:: wanderlust with wife Mayuree, son Abhinay and daughter Abhilasha Ashish BhasinChairman India & CEO South East Asia, Aegis Media 54 1 2 3 As far back as I can remember I always wanted to play by the rules and win. But as a young corporate executive I was los- ing. So almost since I started my corpo- rate career, about twenty five years ago, I wanted to develop a system which could make the good man win. Let me narrate five stories, which are like milestones, in this journey I have undertaken. The Girl And Her Drawing The Crafty corporate games were too much for me to handle. I was bruised and beaten and of course not succeeding. Not only was I sickened by those who played these games, I also found them inscrutable, unfathom- able. I was disillusioned with the world and near despair. Then one day I was sitting with my friend’s seven-year-old daughter who was taking me through her drawing book. We came to the picture below, pointing to which she said, “This is my future house”. Looking at the picture seeing a chimney like structure rising from the roof, I asked, “Your house will have a chimney”? She said, “No uncle, this is a dish antenna”. Her words hit me like a thunderbolt & there was a sudden flash of realization. I had complete- ly missed her as I was interacting with her from my schema, not understanding where she was coming from. I needed to stand in her shoes to understand her. I also realized that I was making the same mistake with the mischief-makers. To com- prehend them I needed to understand their psychological makeup. This interaction changed my perspective. And then I started seeing them clearly. Deep study of their behaviour over many years helped me first catalogue their evil moves and then develop antidotes to them. I also realized that to be a winner I needed to be prosperous. And that I would do well if I make the organization I work for do well, financially. My chance encounters with two young boys drove home two of the most valuable lessons in marketing which I needed. The Boy Selling Lottery Tickets During a visit to the Kashivishwanath tem- ple in Varanasi, as I walked up the stairs, an eleven-year-old boy approached me. He was selling lottery tickets. His spiel went something like this-. ‘Sahib, lottery ticket le lo. Bhagvan muradein puree karega, kis- mat chamkayega’ (Sir, buy a lottery ticket. God will grant your wishes. It will make Fortune smile on you.) Many bought lottery tickets from him. I was no exception. The pitch was compelling. This young boy knew that the average Hindu has a contractual relationship with God. You give something, feed the brahmins, offer a chaddar, and you can ask God for things in return. The boy knew that most visitors to the temple ask God for things. The hopes of a Hindu are high when entering a temple. So he had chosen this strategic place to hawk his wares. Instead of harping on what at- tractive prizes could be won, the boy used a strategy that was different—he beckoned God. He astutely knew his customer. No wonder, then, that he turned out to be one of the largest sellers of lottery tickets in Varanasi. His psychological sensitivity was making him flourish. The Boy Selling Balloons Many years ago, while visiting a pediat- ric hospital in Kolkata, I saw a boy, about thirteen-year old, selling balloons at the gate. As I walked past him, I could not but silently admire his genius. Once inside, I met the doctor who owned this hospital and, during the course of our conversation, I told him I had seen a genius at the gate. He said, “If you are talking about the little boy who is selling balloons at the gate, you are damn right. This boy sensed that kids who are being brought to my hospital start crying at its very sight (fearing an injection or some bitter medicine) and the parents then need something to pacify them. They end up buying his balloons to mollify their kids. Sometimes, in case of an exceptionally stubborn wailer, the hospital staff also buys one from him. He is prospering”. This young lad had gauged the social mi- lieu of the hospital and spotted the commer- cial opportunity that this setting presented. His Sociological sensitivity was helping him prosper. During the course of my journey I also realized that my principles weakened me at places. My values straight jacketed me. Wondering if there was a way that these very values could fortify me, I came across this Zen story. The One-Armed-Boy A boy’s right arm is amputated in his child- hood. When he turns Fifteen, he wants to learn karate and win the championship. He goes to the karate master and requests him to enroll him in the class. The master agrees, but gives the boy only one trick to practice. The other boys, he can see, are learning a variety of other moves. When he asks his master why that is so, the master tells him to carry on with his practice and achieve perfection in that one trick. For almost one year, this boy continues his prac- tice. On the day of the competition, he ap- proaches the ring apprehensively because of his limited repertoire. But to his and others jaw-dropping surprise, he knocks out his first opponent, then the second, and then the third, till he hears a heartening applause and his name being announced as the champion. With tears in his eyes, he falls at his mas- ter’s feet, and asks him how he was able to succeed with his limited knowledge, while his opponents had two hands and knew a greater variety of tricks. The master replies, “Knowing your handicap, I taught you only one trick, which you did well to master. This trick does have an antidote but to execute it your opponent needs your right arm, which, my boy, you don’t have.” This story told me even a weakness can help you win. As my study started bearing fruit, so did my career. I started winning- wealth, status and even a bit of power. The Boy Watching the Football Game A student and a teacher are witnessing a football game. The student asks, “The poor ball gets kicked so badly. Who is at fault, the players or the ball?” The teacher answers, “The ball. If it were not so full of air it would never get kicked.” So be modest, as modesty will reduce the jealous vibes you attract, will help you col- laborate with others like yourself and con- solidate your power base. The Young Man Who Didn’t Get Justice: Machiavelli gives a striking example as to why the ruler should stay just and should have the courage to punish serious offences no matter how powerful the of- fender. Alexander’s father, King Philip of Macedonia, had an escort, a beautiful and noble youth called Pausanias. In his court there was Attalus also, who was one of the powerful men close to Philip. Attalus was enamoured of Pausanias, but faced with strong resistance, he decided upon deceit and force. Pausanias was kidnapped and taken to an isolated place. Here, not only Attalus abused him sexually, but also moti- vated other men to use him in a like manner and humiliate him. After this humiliation Pausanias again and again beseeched King Philip for justice, who promised to avenge him. But rather than punishing Attalus, Philip promoted him as governor of the province of Greece. Now Pausanias’ wrath was not against Attalus, but against King Philip. On the morning King Philip’s daughter was tying her nuptial knot with Prince of Epirus, and the unjust king was on his way to the temple to participate in the ceremony, Pausanias assassinated him. So when you reach the top of the pyramid, stay just. A leader is expected to show cour- age and dispense justice. CD Know Thy HandicapFive stories that have influenced Pavan Choudhary, CEO, Vygon