Guest Lecture Session by Mr. Sunil Naik, Talent Head, DHL Logistics

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On July 4, 2015 Tapmi got the privilege to have a one-to-one interaction with Mr. Sunil Naik, Talent Head, DHL Logistics. Mr. Naik’s relationship with Tapmi dates back to more than a decade.

A person of very high academics, he is an MBA from Cochin University, a PG diploma holder in Sales and Marketing from IIM-K and a PG Diploma holder in HR from XLRI, Jamshedpur. He has a vast industry experience in various corporate domains and has worked in the past with Exxon Mobil, More and Fortis Healthcare.

Mr. Naik, who began his talk by thanking the placement committee at Tapmi, whose warmhearted hospitality had made him feel delighted, talked in detail about DHL Logistics, and about the nitty-gritties of this industry.

DHL Logistics is a part of the DP DHL group, which started off in US in the year 1969 and is currently owned by the Deutsche Post group based out of Bonn, Germany. It’s a €56 billion company with an EBIT of €2.97 billion. The two major divisions of the company are: DP, which handles the post and DHL, which handles the logistics.

The occupation of transportation of goods & services was existent even in the ancient era. However, in the modern world, it began to emerge as an industry during the period of the two World Wars. At that time, sea was the prominent mode of transportation. The number of ports were limited and the cargos were assigned a stipulated time, exceeding which, they were penalized in the form of demurrage. It was then, that some sound minds of the industry thought of sending some of their workers by air, who would take care of the lengthy documentation procedures regarding the goods well on time and the ship owners would avoid penalty.

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Over the years, the logistic business has undergone numerous changes and it has become essential for every player in the industry to develop a USP for his services. In case of DHL, the USP is reliability. When people send their important and/or confidential documents, they trust DHL. When students send their admission papers to universities abroad, they use DHL.

“There is a similarity between us and the Soccer team of Germany. We as Germans are highly process driven; be it soccer or handling the logistics”, Mr. Naik remarked. Annually, DHL ships around 2.9 million TEU of containers and 4.4 million tons of air freight. With an employee base of 4.80 thousand, DHL is present in 220 countries. “From ‘cornea’ to Formula 1 cars, we deliver everything”.

DHL handles warehousing and/or supply chain for companies like Flipkart and Snapdeal. Every mobile phone that we buy in India is shipped, majorly from China by DHL. Soon, it’s going to be the only company to handle the distribution for Coke. By and large, DHL ships over 119 million shipments every year- unbelievable! It also has a 24×7 customer logistic center and two major gateways at Delhi and Bangalore.

When it comes to innovation & technology, DHL is the front runner. Like drones, it has something called ‘Packet-copters’, which are used for delivery purposes abroad. This technology though is yet to make its mark in India. DHL also has RFIDs installed, to locate and place containers near the ports.

Talking about the major concerns of the logistics industry, Mr. Naik felt that data security is a critical issue. He added that innovations like Google’s Dropboxes (in Europe) and 3-D printing technology, have become appeared as rivals to this industry in some form or the other.

Towards the end of his session, Mr. Naik discussed some key things, which as a growing management professional, every person should keep in mind. He asked students to choose to be a ‘specialist’ in one domain, rather than being the jack of all trades. He also suggested them to be agile and ready to quickly learn and unlearn things. But the most interesting point that he made was to ‘be creative’. “Once you enter the industry, the application of the left side of your brain becomes minimal. It is your ‘right brain’ that takes you to your success curve. So, don’t be hesitant to be creative- develop a hobby and hone it, and be prepared to take calculated risks in life (don’t be suicidal though).

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Guest Lecture Session by Mr. Sandip Grover, President and Group Head HR & CSR, Welspun Group

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As part of the ongoing expert talk series at TAPMI, the college once more opened its arms to another distinguished personality – Mr. Sandip Grover, President and Group Head HR & CSR at Welspun Group. Mr. Grover is a master practitioner in the Human Resources field with a teacher’s heart. He started the lecture by asking all students present how they were feeling and why. Instead of a dull lecture on HR practices, the students received a friendly interactive and extremely interesting session on developing one’s attitude. It is after all rare for a corporate leader to shift away from business lessons and focus on the importance of a student’s personal development and happiness.

He spoke how in today’s environment, a person’s emotional quotient was given more importance than his intelligence when it comes to recruitment or job responsibilities. He also dedicated a part of the lecture speaking on the Welspun Group and its transformation into a leading industry giant over the years.

However most of his talk was based on helping one change for the better. He advised the students on the importance of having a right attitude and peace of mind when it comes to work. He expressed seven steps to having a good attitude and positive outlook in life which were truly relevant and the morale was helped by motivational videos shown by him. Overall his guest lecture was widely appreciated by the students and I am sure there would be many more opportunities for him to inspire coming generations of managers.

TAPMI CXO Leadership Lecture Series: Guest Session by Mr. Damodar Mall, CEO – Reliance Retail

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TAPMI welcomed Mr.Damodar Mall, the man behind Big Bazaar, DMart and who is now with Reliance Retail. Mr. Mall is the author of the acclaimed book “Supermarketwalla : Secrets to Winning Consumer India” . Much of his interaction revolved around the contents of the book: why retailers should make room for the “elbow push factor”, how to stop short of becoming a “shopkeeper-in-law”, and what to design for the “Gold-collared man”, among other things.

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Mr. Mall discussed about the rapidly changing demographics and psychographics of the Indian population which has given rise to new opportunities and new challenges for the marketer. One area where we see the effect of this change is in retail.There is no longer one solution for all and it has become imperative to get to know consumers at close quarters to be able to talk to them meaningfully.Mr Mall talked about the changing roles and ways of the modern consumer and the aspects of behaviour that define a person’s attitude to retail.

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The interaction was very enlightening for the students as the speaker shared a lot of insights from the retail sector. He also answered various questions put forward by students. The guest lecture conducted by Mr. Mall at TAPMI was a great learning experience for the students, future retail managers and those who crave to understand consumer dynamics.

Guest Lecture Session by Mr Krish Radhakrishnan, Channel Sales Manager – Freshdesk Inc

DSC_0519TAPMI welcomed its alumnus and former Student Executive Council President Mr. Krish Radhakrishnan, Channel Sales Manager – Freshdesk Inc. to campus. Krish started the lecture by reminiscing his journey from TAPMI to Freshdesk.

Freshdesk Inc. is a cloud-based software provider, headquartered in California. The company’s flagship product is Freshdesk, a customer support software, which brings together multiple communication channels like email, phone, and social networks, and makes it easier for businesses to communicate with customers

Mr. Krish discussed about what it is like working at startups. He went on to debunk common myths about startups. Mr. Krish then went on to give a brief introduction about Freshdesk. He explained about the history of the company, the motivation behind formation of Freshdesk and about Freshdesk products.

DSC_0524The interaction was very enlightening for the students as the speaker shared a lot of personal experiences from his career in SaaS and IT products. He also answered various questions put forward by students. The guest lecture conducted by Mr. Radhakriahnan at TAPMI was a great learning experience for the students and helped clear a lot of clout about the work culture at start-ups and the career growth prospects for MBAs working at start-ups.

Guest Lecture Session by Mr. Siddharthan Muthuraj , VP – HR Jubilant Retail

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Mr. Siddharthan Muthuraj , VP – HR Jubilant Retail involved in an interactive session with the students sharing his experiences and his success mantra in the Retail industry. He encouraged students to ask questions and clarify doubts which were an enriching experience for all the students.

The speaker asked the students about what was the basic objective of students doing MBA. He stressed on the point that growth and money are something that will follow as you work with passion; it doesn’t have to be your primary aim. He illustrated how a 12th graduate could do better in his company than a person in MBA; He invited opinions from students to explore the probable reasons which would have made that possible.

He explained the irony in the situation that people examine all features of phone before buying it but rarely ever evaluate their individual competencies while choosing their goals. The speaker inspired the students to write down their strength and weakness to polish themselves in line with their competencies. He elaborated on how the hunger for learning and applying the concepts studied in MBA helps to succeed in the long run.

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In the opinion of speaker, every individual can be a specialist only till a point in time beyond which he has to become a generalist to propel success. He explained that over a period of time, every individual should try to collaborate with the views of other departments. For example, HR also requires marketing skills as you have to build marketing strategy to let the employees accept the policy and welfare activities in the organization.

Later in the session, he brought in a whole new perspective by saying that managers needn’t have all the technical knowledge of the domain but should have a basic technical knowledge to ask the right questions. He concluded the insightful guest lecture by delving on the importance of  how discipline and flexibility to adapt are the key point to become a good manager in corporate world.

Guest Lecture by Mr. Joseph K Varghese, Head HR, Khazana Jewellery

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Mr. Joseph K Varghese, Head HR, Khazana Jewellery visited campus on 10th October for a guest lecture for TAPMI students. Mr Varghese began the session by giving an overview of the jewellery industry in India.

Emphasizing demand of gold in Indian markets, Mr. Varghese said 25% of world’s gold consumption is in India, making it the largest consumer of yellow metal in the world. Gold is one of the fastest growing sectors in India economy with an annual growth rate of 15%. Khazana, leading jewellers in South India has a very good name and brand image. First opened in 1989, it has grown from a single store to 41 plus stores in 2014 with a turnover of INR 3284Crore and an employment strength of over 2600 plus. Throwing light on expansion plans, Mr. Varghese shared that Khazana plans to open 100 showrooms across country in next 3 years, expand overseas in UAE, Singapore and also venture in ecommerce arena.

Explaining the Business Process of Khazana, Mr. Varghese apprised that firstly gold bullions are imported from South Africa and Switzerland or purchased from RBI, and then passed to goldsmiths with designs for every ornament given by Khazana team. Then, after karigars make the ornaments, jewellery is checked and hallmarked by Government of India Institute for purity, quality, durability and then Hallmarked. After Hallmark stamping, it is sent to showrooms for sales.

Highlighting the point of differences of Khazana jewellery, Mr. Varghese emphasized that the chances of gold contamination are nill and even diamonds are sourced by Khazana. Exclusive designers design unique designs of ornaments. Over a decade, Khazana has built dedicated customers across India. They were the pioneers to introduce ‘Purity’ Guarantee Cart with photo of the ornament, which ensures that if a customer ever wants to sell or melt the ornament will not lose a single rupee in the gold value. In today’s parlance, it is called BIS hallmarked ornament. Khazana has manufacturing hubs all over India and maintains quality, product finish and competitive pricing to its customers.

DSC02673Talking about Management Trainee Program, Mr. Varghese said that a Management trainee after undergoing 6 months development training and on the job training becomes Area Sales Manager. An Area Sales Manager has cross functional stints in area of sales, Product (which includes sourcing, making and pricing), business development and marketing. The major roles of an Area Sales Manager include handling cluster of showrooms, sales and operations, team management, crises management, customer retention and acquisition and driving customer-focus approach within team.

The deeply insightful session was concluded with Mr. Varghese taking barrage of students’ queries and answering everyone.

TAPMI CXO Leadership Lecture Series: Guest Session by Mr Rampraveen Swaminathan, President, International Paper Inc.

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Mr Rampraveen Swaminathan, visited TAPMI on the 8th of October, 2014 to interact with the students. The session was conducted as a part of the TAPMI CxO Leadership Lecture Series. Mr Rampraveen is the President of the International Paper Inc, and serves as the MD and CEO of the International Paper APPM ltd. a subsidiary of the mother firm.

He has more than 15 years of experience in the field of Strategy and General Management. Mr Rampraveen is an alumnus of TAPMI with an MBA in Finance. He set the context of the talk upfront by saying that the two topics he will be talking about will be the Company and Leadership.

He went on to tell about International Paper Inc, and its history. Established in 1898, it has operations in 24 countries and has more than 3000 employees in India. It acquired the Andhra Pradesh Paper Mills (APPM) in the year 2011 to form the Indian subsidiary firm International Paper APPM ltd. The revenue generated from its India operations is $0.4 billion, whereas the revenue generated from global operations is $34 billion.

They have a B2B model, wherein the business is segmented into the following divisions:

  • Industrial Packaging
  • Consumer Packaging
  • Printing Papers
  • Distribution

He spoke about the “Sustainable Forestry” philosophy that is followed by International Paper, as per which for every tree they cut, they plant four trees so that the environmental balance can be established and sustained. With this they have been able to grow wood and agro land and forms a major chuck of their Corporate Social Responsibility.

He then spoke about his experience and what it takes to be a successful leader. He said for a leader it is very important to be able to deal with Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity. The major values that should be demonstrated by a leader are Courage, Higher Ambition and Entrepreneurship. He said that leaders should have learning agility, network centricity and diversity.

???????????????????????????????He ended the lecture by saying that, “It is always necessary that we do what is right, rather than doing what is convenient”. The lecture ended with the TAPMI Placement Forum, extending the vote of thanks to Mr Rampraveen for taking time out of his busy schedule and addressing the students of TAPMI.