Excerpts from the discussion:
Mr. Tamal Bandhopadhyay, Adviser, Strategy Consulting Editor -Bandhan Bank Live Mint
Moderator, Mr. Tamal Bhandopadhyay, started the discussion on the note that the topic revolves more around political stance than an economic one; the root of which is slowing down of China.
Mr. J. K. Vishwanathan, Chief Credit Officer – Development Credit Bank
Mr. J. K. Vishwanathan started the discussion by telling that, before asking whether it is the right time for India to lead the global growth, we should first analyse if India is heading in that direction with the right contributors of economic growth and government policies in place. He also said that in 1999, when China entered the World Trade Organization, it was ranked below many countries, but has now climbed up the ladder. He was optimistic and said that though we are not going bigger than China, we are heading towards a better future. He went ahead to explain the factors which hinder the growth process like low capacity utilization, problems related to infrastructure and land acquisition. He also highlighted the issues faced by the banking sector in India such as negative operating cash flows. He suggested that the government can come up with right policies to assist banking sector and facilitate growth.
Mr. Ashwini Mehra, Deputy Managing Director & CDO – State Bank of India
Mr. Ashwini Mehra talked about the growth rate of developed countries like US and Japan and told that developed countries grow faster than emerging economies. He told that India is in a sweeter spot with 7.5% growth rate. Though he supported the topic and said that India will definitely lead the global growth in five years, he also highlighted the problems which can act as roadblocks like issues faced by banks to raise capital, problems faced by private sectors due to government policies etc. He went ahead and spoke about the positive measures which are driving the growth process such as Make in India, financial inclusion etc.
Mr. Vishwanathan Iyer, Director, Head of Institutional Banking – National Australia Bank
Mr. Vishwanathan Iyer was of the opinion that to lead global growth, not only GDP, but many other factors also come into play. Slowing down of China might not be an opportunity in real sense as it is affecting some sectors in India too. First we have to get our internal act together. For example, democracy has its own challenges; the labour laws in India have some pitfalls, contemporary issues in banking etc. Public expenditure and consumption is increasing and the focus needs to be on these serious gaps instead of global growth, he said.
Mr. Shreenivas Kunte, Director of Content – CFA Institute
Mr. Sreenivas Kunte, spoke about the fundamental attribution error and the anchoring effect in policy makers. He was against the idea of competition and was of the opinion that old power structures will not allow growth. Growth will happen anyway but it should trickle down to the masses, he said.
Manthan 2016, the annual budget conclave of T. A. Pai Management Institute, Manipal, started off with Dr. R.C Natarajan, Director of TAPMI, giving an insightful address that was followed by an enthusiastic speech by Professor Madhu Veeraraghavan. The theme for this year’s event is “Is it the right time for India to lead global growth?” Dr. Natarajan spoke briefly about the history behind the conception of the TAPMI Finance lab and unveiled the Bloomberg report. Thereafter, Professor Madhu set the tone of the event, which was based on the discussion of the topics: Investment Philosophy and Portfolio Selection.
The TAPMI Finance Lab which was started in the year 2013, with a vision of training students in real time trading and investments is one of the finest finance labs in India today. The finance lab is put to use through several specially designed courses and is also used across all the specializations. Student Management Investment Committee (SMIC) is one of the many courses which uses the TAPMI finance lab to train students the art and science of investment. Students learn the nuances of trading and handle the real money unlike many other colleges where either trading happens through simulations or the management handles the required finance. With the vision to bridge the gap between theory and practice, SMIC provides hands on experience to the students and moulds them into smart investors.
The later part of the inauguration ceremony presented a platform for two of the SMIC teams of batch 2015-16 to present their reports and findings in front of esteemed panel judges: Mr. Anil Ghelani – CFA, Senior Vice President of DSP BlackRock, Mr. Rajesh Nair – State Head of BNP Paribas and Mr. Supreeth Shankarghal – Founder & CEO of QF Assets. The interaction between the teams with the panel opened a world of possibilities to potential investors. They spoke in detail about their investment strategies, choices of stocks, the uncertainties and restrictions involved, the returns obtained and were eventually questioned by the judges upon completion of their presentation.
M-Power by MGM : Shri K. Annamalai, S.P Udupi on Black Money, Hawala and Money Laundering: Perspective of Law Enforcement Agencies
Mr. K Annamalai was present in the Tapmi campus for the 4th session of M-Power organized by MGM. His experience and knowledge, being the SP of Udupi was apt to discuss the topic of black money and money laundering in India.
He started the discussion by defining ‘money laundering’ in layman terms. There is a significant difference between money laundering and black money to which he explained the meaning of the same as defined by the Finance Intelligence Unit of India, Ministry of Finance. Money laundering is the process by which large amounts of illegally obtained money is given the appearance having originated from a legitimate source , whereas black money are the proceeds received from this process. He gave us a brief about the origin of the term in 1873, which was coined by Mark Twain. He discussed how in the old days there was a presence of mafia gangs and the money that they illegally earned which they used to build casinos. The origin of the term money laundering comes from the practice of using the book keeping practices of laundromats which were set up by these mafias to conceal their black money.
Explaining further, he illustrated the stages and layers involved in the process. But why is the issue of money laundering and black money so important? It is because it effects the economy and the country in many ways, some of them being crippling of economic growth, rise of anti-national forces locally, rise of illicit business, escaping international sanctions etc. In the meantime he also gave his own experiences from the cases in the law enforcement agencies. Another important perspective regarding the issue was how the world sees it. Money laundering is considered as a serious offence in developed nations and also several UN resolutions passed, one of them being ‘The Financial Action Task Force’ (FATF). Narrowing down the discussion to the Indian context, he discussed the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIN), Ministry of Finance and the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002.
Another concept that comes to the picture is ‘Terrorism Financing’, which basically means an activity that provides financial support to designated terrorist groups. This is a serious threat that is faced by the financial sector today, not only in India but all over the world. Concerning the same he discussed various cases in which he was personally in-charge, the integrities involved and the legal aspects. Finally, we had a question & answer session in which he interacted with the students one to one.
It was an informative and interactive session which was thoroughly enjoyed by the students present along the faculty members.
M-Power by MGM – “Content is fire, social media is gasoline.” – Mr. Naru Radhakrishnan, Chief Client Officer – Millward Brown
In yet another engaging session organized by the Marketing and General Management Forum, Mr. Naru Radhakrishnan enlightened the students with his insights on social media marketing. Mr. Radhakrishnan is an alumnus of TAPMI who has more than 24 years of experience across media and digital space.
He began the session by talking about the relevance of social media marketing. In this era of hyper connectivity, consumers have the ability to aggressively express and broadcast their opinion at the push of a button. Hence, social media marketing can no longer exist as a separate entity, rather it has become an integral part of the marketing activities. He then went on to talk about the reasons behind the increasing proliferation of social media in our daily lives. Human beings are inherently social animals. It is this psychological need that is driving us to use social media as a digitally enabled social setup. Moreover, it also acts as medium for fulfilling our need for fame, an attribute which was exhorted by the famous American artist Andy Warhol.
Mr. Radhakrishnan then talked about the four kinds of social media users. The “Creators” are the primary originators of all social media content. This is a sect of highly creative people. The “Curators” are the aggregators who collate the content created by creators and packages in an attractive way for the rest of the users to consume. The “Distributors” distribute this content to different segments. The “Consumers”, being the last group, are the set of passive end customers of social media.
Moving ahead, he explained how social media is reshaping the contours of marketing. Instead of the historical “Marketing to People” scenario, it has changed to a “Marketing for/with People” situation. In the past, marketers used to set the agenda. It has gradually changed into a situation where consumers are setting the agenda. Marketing is no longer about the products but about the stories that you weave around them. In this age of social media, a high quality product alone won’t help you to succeed in the market place. The product would need stories in correct context so that consumers would be able to connect with it. He then played the “Dove Real Beauty Sketches” short film which was created as part of the Dove’s marketing campaign. The video showcased how brands can be built on beautiful stories.
Another factor which determines the success of such social media campaigns is the surprise element and interest level associated with it. He took the example of the famous “Smell like a Man” campaign of Old Spice. Moving forward, he spoke of the importance of being prepared for social media overreactions to marketing campaigns. He went on to explain how Honeywell Cereals leveraged this overreaction to their advantage. The trick is to think more like a publisher than a marketer. Even in the era of social media, word of mouth publicity has its own relevance. What you as a marketer tell to a customer is way less credible than what customers tell each other. A brand is created out of these interactions between customers. Hence social media acts as a meeting ground between consumers and brands. This is why online presence is a must for companies looking to leverage the social media tools. A mere presence in itself won’t add value either. Instead of using social media to just impress people, it should be leveraged to impact them. He cited the Ice Bucket Challenge campaign as one of the most successful such initiative which helped in creating a real impact.
The event ended with a highly interactive Q&A session wherein students and faculty members interacted with the guest to make the learning experience even more enriching.
Atharva 2016: Guest Lecture – “Invest in stock markets to beat inflation and to have a secondary source of income against an uncertain future” – Mr. Bharat Dave, Senior Manager, BSE IPF
In a session which was aimed at educating the students of TAPMI about stock markets and investment options, Mr. Bharat Dave began by giving a brief history of stock exchanges followed by that of the Bombay Stock Exchange.
He discussed the rights, benefits and classes of investment, the working of the National and Bombay Stock Exchanges and some functions of the stock exchange market. He elaborated as to how stock exchanges were always in place in the ancient times, during the time of barter system in the human civilization. Talking about the BSE, he said that it is the oldest exchange in Asia, has the maximum number of companies listed and is the first company to be recognized by the India Government under The Securities Contract (Regulation) Act.
Taking the discussion further, he elaborated the various advantages of trading at stock exchanges. He said, investing in stock markets provides liquidity, safety, returns on investments and tax saving benefits to an investor. He also discussed as to why one should invest in the stock market, giving reasons that it helps earn returns on our idle resources, it is a sound source of income, helps beat inflation, and provides safety against an uncertain future. For this purpose, he said that it is important that prospective investors have a sound knowledge of the investments that they make, spend only what is left after saving, engage in a good and sound financial planning, and also understand the tax implications of the same.
He then went ahead and discussed the principles of safe investments that one should keep in mind before investing in a stock market. He also spoke about the types of stock market, trade and settlement processes and the rights of an investor. Further, he gave the students a brief idea about mutual funds and various investment strategies. At the end of the lecture, he spoke about the new initiatives taken in the interest of investors.
He ended his speech with a quote, “Don’t go for the job, but create the job.”
When it comes to Prof. R.C. Natarajan, “Unlearning” is also a case-based learning!
In an engaging session organized by the Marketing and General Management forum at TAPMI, Prof. R.C. Natarajan gathered the views of students about their perceptions of unlearning.
He also shared how at most times, what we perceive might not be what the truth actually is. “To have a clear perception, it is necessary to sometimes make bullet points of what actually we have and what can be changed to see it in a new way”, Prof. R.C. Natarajan said.
Moving ahead, he spoke more about perception and enlightened the audience as he differentiated between ‘Buying and being sold’. Buying is what one chooses as per ones will and being sold is what another person is able to make him do. Prof. Natarajan stressed on learning adaptability and how welcoming new thoughts and ideas is an integral part of unlearning which is never about formatting and forgetting but is about setting aside previous learnings in the memory.
With reference to the Beer Game – a simulation game for Distribution Management, Prof. R.C. Natarajan where the purpose is to understand the distribution side dynamics of a supply chain. Unlearning for life follows the same principle of understanding the volatility of different aspects in ones environment and being able to balance it.
Based on a caselet, Prof. Natarajan asked students about how many perceptions a person can actually have, and how there is a huge gap between words and deeds of many people just because they are taught one way. Eventually their learning somehow becomes something else.
We have always been taught to follow what are parents and teachers have taught us and we lack the basic ability to question why. “Elders are always right” might not always be true said Prof. Natarajan.
Learning happens when one observes and adds additional information to it. Once these elements are assimilated into the brain, framing begins which creates a particular image of that person. This framing may or may not be accurate as it is based on our selective perceptions.
In his closing remarks, Prof. Natarajan said that “Unlearning for Life” is only possible when one comes out of his comfort zone and moves from his cocoon to the meadows. He encouraged students to take up things that scare them. Only then, they can understand what accomplishment really means.
M-Power by MGM – “A career in marketing is not for the faint-hearted!” – Professor Vinod Madhavan, Assistant Professor – Marketing Management, TAPMI
In a first of its kind session by the Marketing and General Management Forum, the students of TAPMI were involved in an enriching and informal session with Professor Vinod Madhavan. He spoke with an open heart and a free mind about the career prospects and challenges in the field of marketing and what lies ahead in the future. He also shared his personal experiences with the students to give them a taste of reality.
He began the session by telling the students that a marketer must know how to impress customers as they are the ones who get money to the table. The other departments of a company simply manage the money. He referred to ‘war’ as the synonym for marketing as it involves a stiff battle with direct and indirect competitors. To win this war, a marketer needs courage and ideas and hence, is not a career for the faint-hearted.
Marketing as a career option gives a diverse, dynamic work experience that gives rise to new challenges every day. It is also fast paced, involves a challenging environment very often and is faced with numerous internal and external pressures.
Moving ahead, he spoke of the skill sets that a marketer must have and told the students to improve on these during their stay at TAPMI. Firstly, a marketer must take the initiative or somebody else will. Secondly, he must have leadership skills in which persistence plays a major role. Thirdly, he should have good analytical skills as decisions are taken based on facts and not merely on intuition. Fourthly, the team is god as far as marketing is concerned. The fifth skill that a marketer must have is that he must possess radical and out of the box ideas. Lastly, he must have the communication skills necessary to convince others.
Moving on to career paths, he spoke of three traditional careers and two modern day career options. The traditional paths included sales, marketing (branding, project management, etc.) and a move from sales to marketing once an employee has gained enough experience. The modern day options included careers in analytics and digital marketing.
To end with he said that students must choose their careers wisely as digital marketing in India will take at least another 10 to 15 years to reach an advanced level. The infrastructural challenges, illiteracy rates, lack of access to technology and branding and communication remain hindrances in the path of digital marketing in India.