Tuesday, August 26, 2014
Like the age-old adage goes, “change is the only constant”, companies too have to keep transforming and reinventing themselves. But how and when do they transform themselves is the billion dollar question. To answer this question, SIMSREE Corporate Relations Committee was honored and privileged to have on campus, Mr. Sudeep Nair, Global Head – Business Transformation at Jardine Lloyd Thompson on 26th of August, 2014. Mr. Nair is an IIM Ahmedabad Alumnus and has prior experience in Cognizant, Switzerland as the Head of Cognizant Business Consulting.
To train the naïve business minds of the batch, Mr. Nair kicked off the session by giving a basic idea about how a typical business organization looks. He explained that any organization is built on three basic blocks viz. the front end, the middle office and the back end; and also mentioned that the core competency of a company comes from any of these three basic blocks.
The discussion slowly steered towards how an organization should constantly assess itself using Porter’s five forces and adapt to the changing attitude of the customers. Mr.Nair focused on the point that regulatory hurdles could also be considered as a force that could disrupt the industry.
After assessing the operating model, if an organization feels that a major overhaul is due, it should set its sights on a target operating model that it could capitalize on in the long run. This transformation roadmap can include people, process or technology. Mr. Nair mentioned that implementation is the most difficult part in any business transformation after the vision and methods are set, especially if the change involves transforming people.
After sharing insights on business transformation Mr. Nair threw the floor open for Q&A. The enthusiasm of the batch was portrayed by the number of quality questions asked by the students, which Mr. Nair answered patiently. The session gave the students an understanding of the various aspects of business transformation.
“Blood is that fragile scarlet tree we carry within us” - Osbert Sitwell
SSR (Student Social Responsibility) Committee in association with Tata Memorial Hospital, Lions Club (Juhu) and Think Foundation organized a ‘Blood Donation Camp’ and ‘Thalassemia Checkup’ at SIMSREE on 26th August 2014. The event commenced with a very informative session about blood donation and Thalassemia by Mr. Vinay Shetty, Vice President of Think Foundation. Mr. Vinay has been responsible for running a structured program for testing for Thalassemia minor in colleges in Mumbai University, which has now spread to various corporate offices and residential areas.
The session helped break myths about blood donation and educated the students about the importance of blood donation. It also had detailed information about Thalassemia and pointed out the importance of Thalassemia checkup for every individual. Think Foundation is trying to ensure that no child is born with Thalassemia major and the students were encouraged to check whether they were Thalassemia minors by conducting free tests. After the session, the blood donation campaign was carried out.
The camp witnessed an enthusiastic participation of 89 people wherein 450 ml /bottle and 350 ml/bottle were contributed by male and female students respectively. People from outside the college were also allowed to participate in the camp. This camp spread the feeling of contentment among the students of SIMSREE as the message given out in the session was that every individual can save 3 lives. Also dual sided English and Marathi version badges of “I donated blood today (मी आज रक्तदान केले)” were distributed to spread awareness across everyone in the college and outside the campus. Each blood donor was thanked and given a token of appreciation for his/her contribution. The process was smooth and painless; thanks to the cooperation of nurses and friendly doctors. SSR Committee would finally like to thank Dr. Sangeeta Pandit (HOD, Finance, SIMSREE), who guided the committee throughout the process.
Friday, August 22, 2014
Students of Sydenham Institute of Management Studies, Research and Entrepreneurship Education (SIMSREE) belonging to the Corporate Relations Committee organised “Marketer’s Mark” for the first time ever on 22nd August, 2014. It brought together a few of the marketing world’s stalwarts with its theme being “Rewriting the Rulebook”. The guests included Ms. Deepali Naair (Chief Marketing Officer, Mahindra Holidays & Resort India Ltd.) as Keynote Speaker, Dr. Hemant Dande (President, Raptakos Brett & Co.) as Moderator, Ms. Anjali Patil (Director - Brand and Communications, BNP Paribas), Mr. Ajay Jethi (Chief Marketing Officer, Reliance Capital Asset Management), Mr. Sanjay Vakharia (Director - Marketing, Spykar Lifestyles Pvt. Ltd.), and Mr. Madan Mohapatra (Head - Media & Marketing, Future Group).
The students were introduced to many new marketing concepts like micro segmentation, need for reshaping the customer demand and the importance of personalization amongst many others. Apart from these, through the discussions of the panellists, greater emphasis was laid on adaptability and pace of the current world. The esteemed panellists mutually agreed that everything is evolving continuously as the consumer is changing, becoming more confident and technology dependent. As a result, companies have to innovate to include digital mediums and follow innovative marketing campaigns in order to capture the ever decreasing attention spans of the consumer.
The importance and need for context in marketing was reiterated throughout the conclave focussing on the changing needs, wants and demands of the consumer. Marketing cannot be considered in isolation and must be done with the right context to succeed.
All the guests were very enthusiastic in sharing their experiences and answering all the students’ questions in detail. Through these discussions, the students gained immense knowledge into the workings of current marketing world, its evolving nature and the latest trends which they would be otherwise hard pressed to find in any textbook, magazine or newspaper in such a lucid manner. This shows the very successful start to Marketer’s Mark becoming an annual event at SIMSREE.
Wednesday, August 13, 2014
What is digital marketing? Is it the next big thing? How does it help businesses to grow? To answer all these questions, SIMSREE’s Corporate Relations Committee organized a guest lecture by Mr. Gaurav Sharma on Digital Marketing.
Mr. Gaurav Sharma is the General Manager (Digital & Mobility) at Omnicom Media Group. He considers himself as a Solutions Specialist and a Sales Professional with an experience to sell digital solutions to clients. He builds a connect with clients, understands their business issues and works on result oriented solutions
He commenced the session with a short video clip on motivation to inspire the students to stretch themselves and stay ahead in today’s intensively competitive marketing industry. He then shared his varied experiences as a marketing and sales professional and emphasized upon the challenges that an marketing job needs to face. One of the major challenges in this job is achieving the given targets on time.
Mr. Sharma then elaborated on the concepts of video marketing, substantiating each concept with a corporate example. Moreover, he also explained how an advertisement should be relevant and attractive to the consumers. According to him, viral marketing through the social media could be a cheap and effective means of communication for the same. He stressed that businesses should constantly revamp themselves to sustain and survive in this ever changing market by citing an example of how a leading bank changed its advertisement from serious commercials to fun filled animated viral online videos to connect with a wider audience.
Having said that, he also explained how the advertising industry is technologically budding every day with several advertisers now using mobile apps to engage with their customers. Mr. Sharma gave an example of a new trend in the market wherein marketers are making the use of mobile apps coupled with the Bluetooth or Near Field Communication (NFC) technology to create interactive multi-player games for children.
“The internet of things” was another topic which he spoke about. He explained how businesses are trying to connect various devices such as a washing machine, a refrigerator, or even a smoke detector, to the internet and let consumers control them from any location.
Towards the end he left the audience with a hard hitting example of social advertising. The “Kankhajura Tesan”, winner of 3 Lions Gold awards at Cannes 2014, is an initiative aimed at entertaining media-dark villagers through mobile phones and also creating brand awareness amongst them, making the rural market ready for urban brands.
Mr. Sharma's enriching interaction with the batch resulted in an enthusiastic response from the audience which was evident in the fruitful question answer round towards the end of the session.
Sunday, August 10, 2014
Dr. Rajeev Mishra, an HR professional having more than 23 years of experience in training, management education and generalist HR, presently heads HR and Administration at AMW Motors Ltd and is an accomplished trainer, conducting sessions on soft-skill modules like Self Development, Change Management, Leadership, Emotional Intelligence, Communication Skills, etc. He came to SIMSREE on 10th August, 2014 with the objective to help students understand themselves better in order to grow responsibly, be motivated, and have the right perception and appropriate attitude.
Humans have a tendency of looking at themselves through the eyes of others, in the process they often forget to take their own opinions into consideration. He laid emphasis on believing in oneself and that evaluating and understanding oneself is a continuous process. He stressed upon the importance of the ‘Looking Glass Self Theory’ i.e. how one can develop oneself by just looking into a mirror. Also, introspection needs to be done objectively and rationally. Human emotions are destructive; the challenge is to keep these emotions in check.
Introducing the students to Sigmund Freud’s elements of psychology – the Id, Ego and Super Ego, he explained how pressure is a result of expectations and consequences while frustration occurs when our journey is blocked.
Everything is relative and introspection is the key to improving oneself. Different situations need to be adapted to differently. Understanding the context, the situation and the people involved always helps broaden one’s perspective.
Trust yourself and never give up, be rational and follow your own path. Accept it as a challenge. The way we steer our ego defines us.
He ended the lecture by sharing a mantra:
1) Give- Surrender yourself to the cause
2) Mercy to everyone
3) Self Control
Set your goals and you can become whatever you wish! Self-realization is the key to success and one must master the art of looking at things either subjectively or objectively.
The entire session was very interactive and stimulating and he cleared several misconceptions by giving anecdotes from his repertoire arising from years of experience in dealing with people.
Friday, August 8, 2014
HR Conclave-14, held on 8th August, 2014 was the first event for the academic year 2014-15 for the 2014-16 batch organised by the SIMSREE Corporate Relations Committee, with the topic ‘Mergers & Acquisitions: The HR perspective in managing change’. The panel included eminent personalities from the HR domain such as Dr. Adil Malia (Global Head - Leadership, Learning and People Management, Essar Group) as Keynote Speaker, Ms. Madhavi Lall (former Global Head- Employee Relations, Standard Chartered) as the moderator, Prof. Darryl Cabral (founder, Total Solutions Incorporated), Mr. Sanjeev Parkar (Director - Human Capital at PriceWaterhouseCoopers), Dr. Jayant Kumar (Chief of Business HR, Tata Power) and Mr. Dharam Rakshit (Assistant Vice President-Employee Relations and Compliances at Mondelez Foods).
Mergers and Acquisitions are a route that companies use to achieve success. However, there are various differences present in terms of human capital and cultural differences prevalent between the two companies being merged. The feeling of being a victor and vanquished company tends to prevail amongst the two companies and leads to a major loss of morale in the company being acquired.
Many a time, the HR is involved in the process only after the finalization of the financials and material MOUs. Such a deal would lead to a future failure in the negotiations. The panel highlighted how one needs to focus on “Realization of company values and integration of various processes across the two companies”, along with integration of work cultures of the companies. The crux of the discussion was that the HR team should be part of the strategy team present in the war room so that all the differences regarding human capital and internal processes are ironed out smoothly and the process of M&A becomes smooth for the blue collared employees along with the white collared employees.
The panel highlighted various scenarios from their personal experiences regarding M&As so that the students were able to comprehend the importance of HR in the process of M&A. Various intricacies of M&As were revealed during the session, shedding light on the close association between different verticals in a company and how each of these verticals are engaged when a company chooses to acquire another. It was a great session for first year students to get a taste of corporate interactions.
Thursday, August 7, 2014
SIMSREE was honoured to have Mr. Ramu Menon, (Director Consulting - Consumer Goods/FMCG at Cognizant Business Consulting) on 7th August, 2014. He is an alumnus of IIM-K & an IT leader with 23+years of global experience in managing IT value creation for the consumer goods industry leaders namely P&G and PepsiCo.
The topic for the guest lecture was - Breakthrough Technologies in IT Sector like Social, Mobile, Analytics, Cloud (SMAC).
The enthralling session began with what traditional business meant. In earlier days, traditional business was characterised by Captive Markets, Brand Driven Messaging (which was one way i. e from producers to consumers), Limited Choice, Lack of Information (Both ways – From producers to consumers & vice versa), Reined in by umpteen regulations and Unfulfilled Regulations to go beyond. On the other hand, current business is characterised by Open Market Access, Customer Driven Communication, Inclusive Organisations, Democratisation of Information, Open Regulations and Abundance of Supply and Opportunity Creators.
Next topic was drivers of this transformation in business. The below factors responsible for bringing about this change were discussed.
- Digital Metamorphosis
- Inclusive Internet
- Sliver Casting – Self Directed Communication (Fetching information from small group)
Then the discussion veered to impact of business. The new business comes with new rules and new players, for example - Kishore Biyani’s new model for Big Bazaar. New business has also led to extreme transformation, for example Philips foraying in to an entirely new category of Healthcare. Challenging core competency is one of the important changes happening due to new nature of businesses. Also the concepts of Fluid Core, Radical Adjacencies and Externalisation were duly explained.
Next in line were the technologies enabling these transformations collectively named as SMAC – Social, Mobile, Analytics and Cloud. At the centre of SMAC there are intense social users, volumes of data created by consumers, leveraging footprint i.e. electronic DNA, multitude of platforms, own control & drive your own experience kind of things.
- Amazon Pre Shop – Shipping products to consumers based on forecasting
- Coke Freestyle Fountain – A dispenser giving coke with customized flavours
- Miller Colors Smart SKU – Based on Customer spread anticipate sales & perform community sensing
- Dynamic Car Insurance
Active participation of the students was marked by the number of quality questions asked by them and Mr. Ramu Menon answered each of them with due diligence. SIMSREE thanks him for taking out his valuable time and coming on to the campus to interact with students through a guest lecture.