Indian Institute of Management, Rohtak, conducted its annual flagship event, the Management Summit 2020, on the 31st of October and the 1st of November, 2020. The theme of the summit was ‘From Rising Through A Decade Long Transformation In Business Processes To Imagineering The Future,’ which revolved around the metamorphosis of our business environment in ways no one could have predicted. The panelists shared anecdotes of their personal experiences with surviving economic declines, keeping up with changing consumer mindsets, and shifting of conversations towards running sustainable ventures. With the advent of the digital era, the discussions also elucidated the need for closer alignment of data with products and services across an organization’s functional areas. Many of these disruptions were unforeseen and revolutionary, molding the way organizations manage people and development. Industry Relations & Interaction Cell smoothly coordinated the two-day event, featuring numerous industry stalwarts, that provided the attending students with incredible insights and learnings on the dynamic themes.

Dr. S.K. Pandey, Dean Academics, IIM Rohtak, and Dr. Koustab Ghosh, Dean, IIM Rohtak, delivered the welcoming address, commending the efforts of the student body of IIM Rohtak for facilitating the Management Summit 2020 to bridge the gap between an educational institute and the corporate world. Their introductory notes set the tone for the day by speaking about technology transformations and the futuristic advancement of organizations looking to optimize data and analytics to win over clients, meet business targets, and improve operational efficiency.

The first panel on Day-1 commenced with the theme ‘How Transformative Leaders Lead Through a Crisis.’

Mr. Milind Thatte, Managing Director, Procter & Gamble Health Limited, shared insights from the beginning of his journey at Cipla and how he learned from the humble ways of the owner and CEO of the company. Speaking about the futuristic requirements of a leader in the changing climate, he touched upon servant leadership. He said, “In this kind of scenario, it is important to demonstrate humility and be sensitive to what the new generation of managers are looking for from you.”

“The one fundamental and underlying instinct a young person requires is fun,” said Mr. Rajeev Srivastava, CBO, Reliance Securities, commenting on the young age of the working population of the country and the kind of opportunities leaders should provide to youthful employees. He further outlined how the securities business offered that kind of excitement, as the nature of the industry was such that a leader is always dealing with ups and downs, and even during the pandemic, the securities business did not come to a halt.

Speaking on the type of a leader who can transform a crisis into a survivable opportunity, Mr. Mandeep Singh, CEO and Executive Director, JSL Lifestyle Limited, described three essential components, “One is a wartime leader who is constantly trying to fend off existential threats; second is a resilient leader who can steer through adversity, and lastly that of a servant leader, who is an eager disciple first and foremost.”

Mr. K Giriprakash, Associate Editor and Chief of Bureau, Hindu BusinessLine, provided his unique media perspective on disseminating information during a time of crisis. He outlined how the news industry has already been going through a crisis with the barrage of online news sources and social media. “Unlike FMCG companies, newspapers have a different kind of business cycle. In these times, when a newspaper circulation goes out, the management starts losing money due to the increased production expenditure. We’ve had to strike a fine balance between circulation and gaining ad revenues,” he said while speaking about the economic aspects and the changed consumer mindsets towards print media during the pandemic.

The second segment of the day featured a Leadership Talk by Mr. Rajneesh Jain, President & CFO, Reliance Jio Infocomm. He narrated the founders’ dream and journey in setting up Reliance, creating an equity cult in India, the company’s foray into retail and telecom sectors, and the digital revolution they brought about with Reliance Jio. Further, while talking about how businesses should adapt, keeping in mind the new data protection regulations, he emphasized, “Be mindful with volume and significance of data; ownership of enterprise risk management and compliance has taken a front seat.”

The first panel of Day 2 revolved around the theme ‘Large Scale Agile Transformation in a Demand-Driven World.’ consisting of panel members:

“Technology plays an important role in creating and monetizing content,” said Mr. Bipin Chaudhary, Head IT & Projections, Cinepolis India, while discussing the agile technologies employed in the entertainment industry. While catering to the post-pandemic demand, he talked about agile technologies used by Cinépolis that guarantee safe distancing while watching movies or ordering food. He also highlighted the revenue scope from advertisements in the industry and the need to evolve with the changing demands.

“Even with technology redefining manufacturing, digitalizing inefficient processes is only possible when working with agility,” said Mr. Sachin Kulkarni, Head, NW Operation Excellence, Siemens. He further expressed his views about the fourth revolution in the manufacturing industry based on AI, robotics, simulations, IoT, and more. He also said that along with the Make In India movement, the revolution had a vital contribution to India's GDP by helping MSMEs and MNCs spread awareness about change and adaptability.

“From working in stable silos to shifting to the volatile and swift movements, agile transformations have changed the way we work,” said Mr. Saumya Chakrabarti, COO, ONGC Petro Additions Limited, while elucidating the challenges faced by the traditional organizations during the shift from a stable into an agile environment due to the pandemic. He highlighted the importance of change and transformation in the current volatile environment. He stressed the importance of aligning agility in traditional standards of work.

"It is all about how good you are in terms of change management,” said Mr. TK Balakumar, COO, BigBasket, while explaining how well Bigbasket was able to manage the demand surge given the pandemic. He mentioned the various stepwise processes to cope with a phenomenal rise in customers, including categorizing the essential products and quantifying the inventory.

The Management Summit 2020 concluded with a flourish with a final panel discussion on ‘Changing Dynamics of Financial Strategy for Growing Business’ featuring esteemed panelists:

“Numbers give immense comfort, but one needs to be proficient in the subject matter to make impactful decisions,” said Mr. Neeraj Goel, CFO Global Operations, Jaquar Group. Mr. Goel also focused on the significance of renegotiation with vendors and service providers, cost and design innovation in the changing dynamics of the financial strategies in these unprecedented times, and how Jaquar is trying to reinforce the changes gearing up for the challenges ahead.

Mr. Dinesh Modi, CFO, Cactus Communications, explained how the business model is changing for service firms, and they are moving towards the hybrid working model. “Hiring is changing a lot; the whole world is a marketplace for hiring now, and work from anywhere is becoming the norm,” he said while talking about how drastically hiring has changed.

Mr. Raghuram Krishnan, Head of Finance, Adobe India & Korea, while speaking at the panel discussion on the topic of 'Changing Dynamics of Financial Strategy for growing business' said that "The Financial ecosystem in the new era is going to be more accessible to people around the world." Mr. Krishnan talked about the fact that the pandemic has accelerated the change in financial service dissemination, which was long due. He also emphasized the pandemic's positive influence on the utilization of resources across all global economic sectors.

"Digitization has become a way of life and has seeped in every domain of organizations," said Mr. Rajendra Chitale, CFO, Crayon Software Experts India Pvt Ltd. He talked about the challenges the pandemic has posed for various sectors, such as the demand for commercial office space going down but, at the same time, providing a boom in the electronics industry. He elucidated the unprecedented changes digitization has brought about and how they could manage the auditing process during lockdown without any interruptions by switching to the work from home model.

IIM Rohtak has completed a decade in imparting excellence and management grit to the country’s aspiring young managers. It is amongst the country’s top management institutes and is the only IIM in the Delhi-NCR region. The institute aims to build tomorrow’s leaders by organizing various events to polish students’ skills and update them about the industry’s current trends, hence bridging the gap between industry and academia.

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