The One Year Post Graduate Programme for Executives (EPGP) Batch 2018-19 under its EPGP iKON CxO Guest Lecture Series invited Mr. Sankaran Venkatramani, Executive Director- Management Consulting, KPMG on August 07, 2018. He shared his views on the topic—‘Building Capability Towards Organizational Excellence in the VUCA World’.
Mr. Venkatramani began his talk raising a question to the participants about what kind of challenges a CEO might face in today’s changing scenario. Appreciating the apt answers given by enthusiastic participants, Mr. Venkatramani noted that every company is going through a sporadic change—which if not handled in a proper manner, might make it difficult for the company’s survival. ‘With various technologies and practices emerging namely, block chain, machine learning, artificial intelligence, sustainability issues, etc. a company needs to be research oriented and focus more on its growth’, he said. Discussing about mergers and acquisitions, he noted that today even the start-ups are acquiring big companies, thus breaking the tradition of ‘snake swallowing the frog’.
He encouraged the participants to change the thought process and focus on lifetime employability rather than lifetime employment. ‘Job is what you do, and satisfaction or security are just feelings. Do not mix the two and look for job satisfaction or job security. Keep enhancing your skills—for you never know when your current skill may not be relevant in future and you get replaced by machines or robots’, Mr. Venkatramani mentioned. Sharing facts and figures from India CEOs Outlook 2017, he noted what the CEOs are grappling with:
- 88% are optimistic about global and Indian economy. They believe in better growth prospects for India compared to that of global economy.
- 85% are moving towards data driven enterprise and planning high investment towards data analytics.
- 72% are looking for newer skills specialists.
- 80% see technology disruption as opportunities rather than threats.
- 79% agree that increase in inflation means increased cost.
- 97% are getting ready for millennial customers and feel growing responsibility to represent the best interests of their customers.
- 44% are collaborating for growth and are likely to form collaborative partnerships or ventures for growth over next three years.
- 84% are planning to invest significantly into cyber security over the next three years.
He then also shared key factors imperative for an organization’s growth including AI, technology, ROI, etc. and various headwinds for the CEOs.
He concluded his talk with predictions for 2019 and beyond and noted that 30% of the companies will see further declines in Customer Experience Quality, 20% of the CEOs will fail to act on digital transformation and put their firms at risk, 10% of the purchase decisions will be influenced by intelligent agents, 75% or early AI projects will underwhelm due to operational oversights and 30% proofs of concept that will create a true foundation for block chain.
The session concluded with Q&A with the guest, which turned out to be very insightful for the participants of the Institute. The talk was also attended by the faculty and staff members of IIM Indore.