Born: Chennai, India
Worked in: Various parts of India
How would you characterize innovation in your work? Innovation is looking at an existing situation or problem differently and exploring the “other way” — not how things are done today, but how they can be done tomorrow.
Innovation for innovation’s sake rarely works. Any program must achieve an important measure of its relevance. I generally ask:
• Will it yield better results vis-à-vis today
• Will it make us future ready?
• Will it bring in benefits on time with appropriate cost and productivity?
• Will it make people more satisfied?
Why do people see you as an innovator? A common challenge of the agency business is attracting and keeping good talent. Often, training and coaching is left to individual offices, and a worldwide team can suffer from inconsistencies. A solution that I am proudly and passionately implementing for MEC worldwide is using technology-based learning that positively impacts our most important asset – our people.
Why do people see you as an innovator? At the risk of sounding immodest, they may see a self-starter who doesn’t wait for things to happen, but has the initiative and resilience to move new ideas from plan to execution. In today’s fragmented media market, innovation is a necessity and not a luxury. Consumers need to be engaged and not just informed and engagement is not possible without creativity and innovation.
What is the biggest challenge you face in applying thinking to international projects? One challenge from my Indian vantage point is to find an idea that is truly innovative globally, while another challenge is the ability to execute the idea with a consistent threshold of excellence across different markets. Any idea is successful only of the owners in every market believe in it, are passionate about it. Co-opting all constituents into the merit of the idea and its benefits is both challenging and imperative.
Other International Facts: I strongly believe that in today’s technology-enabled world, where you are geographically located is irrelevant to what geographies your work impacts. While I live and work in Mumbai, India, a part of what I do here will hopefully impact the worldwide organization meaningfully.