IIM Indore witnessed the gracious presence of Mr. Sanjiv Bajaj, Managing Director, Bajaj Finserve Ltd. on Thursday, September 06, 2018. Mr. Bajaj interacted with the participants, faculty members and staff members of the Institute. He shared his views on diverse topics like economy, growth rate, inflation, leadership, etc.
Professor Rishikesha T. Krishnan, Director, IIM Indore introduced Mr. Bajaj. Professor Krishnan started the interaction raising a question to know what Mr. Bajaj’s views are about the various prospects of economy across various sectors. Mr. Bajaj noted that economy depends on the previous two or three quarters, always. In the last three quarters, consumer sales grew significantly, rural India customers have been better, government has been investing money in the rural sector—which is a good sign as the economic growth looks good at first sight, he said. ‘However, our economy also depends on the global economy—which is going through a challenging phase. There’s a lot of uncertainty and we need to ensure that we do have jobs in our hands in future. We might be moving towards the direction of greater insecurity as well’, Mr. Bajaj said.
Noting that the oil prices are also going up which is resulting in inflation; in turn affecting the Indian economy, Mr. Bajaj shared a ray of hope as well. He noted that Indians are creative people and they know how to innovate and produce world class products. ‘We do not depend on others for running our businesses. We prefer focusing on long term business—which may or may not work successfully in the initial years, but will be a success later’, he said.
He also shared his views as to why the Indian economy might be going down. He said that running any company needs efficient people—and efficiency is lacking in today’s era. ‘The second reason is greed—where everyone is greedy and jealous of one another—thereby killing a large part of industry career growth. We need to understand that there are 99% people who are honest and hardworking who need to be supported and encouraged—and not compare everyone like the 1% people who are greedy, corrupt and lazy’, he said.
Discussing the qualities of a good leader, Mr. Bajaj shared how he got an opportunity of working with different type of people—old, young, people with traditional business, people with startups, foreign leaders, Indian leaders, etc. ‘Leadership is not to be learnt, it is something to be developed. True leadership comes from growth mindset and not fixed mindset. You need to be confident and focused, learn with experimenting, remain action biased and know when you’re ready for executing a particular plan to be successful’, Mr. Bajaj said.
He concluded by saying that a good leader should provide a right direction to the entire team and serve them with a common recipe for success—creating alignment between the team members. ‘It’s not just about building a successful company, but about a legacy you wish to create. Be a leader who leaves behind a contribution to the world—for which he is remembered even after 50 years. All of us have that opportunity, we just need to know when to grab it’, he said.
The session concluded with a Q&A.