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Beware of these professional flaws

Goa Institute Of Management | February 22, 2006

You are young, hard working and ambitious.

You want to succeed -- be it as the CEO of a top conglomerate, an entrepreneur managing a successful business or a consultant who wants to make a mark in his/ her chosen field. There are some essential questions to which you want to know the answers. For example:

How can you build up a strong, reliable team?

What are the essential qualities of a leader?

What are the common mistakes made by young working professionals today?

Pranesh Misra, president & chief operating officer, Lowe India shares his mantras for success in an exclusive interview with

Mirsa completed his post-graduation from IIM-Ahmedabad in 1977 and joined Lintas India as a management trainee. He has also worked as the vice president, marketing, at Mashreq Bank, Dubai, from 1993-1995.

What are the five professional flaws to beware of?

~ A closed mind when it comes to new options.

~ The belief that age is the only relevant measure for a person's worth (ie someone younger cannot be as worthy as a relatively older and more experienced person).

~ Lack of an ability to listen.

~ No clear vision.

~ Giving lesser importance to the consumer's perspective.

What are the essential qualities of a leader?

~ A clear vision to start with.

~ You must have good communication abilities in order to share this vision clearly with your team.

~ You must be able to motivate and inspire your team consistently. You must be ready to give credit for any success to your team.

If one has more that one job offer in hand, how should one decide which one to choose?

You must always choose the field you are passionate about. Therefore, it is very important to identify what you are passionate about in life. Money is important, but it follows if you are doing something you love to do.

What factors have driven you in life?

I have always been focused on what I like to do. I have constantly focused on my areas of interest. This I think has driven me all along.

Any tips for managing people?

You must respect others' views; try building strong teams and not merely groups. Don't be a taskmaster all the time. Build a comfortable environment around you to work in. Most importantly, build mutual trust between members of a team.

What are the marketing mantras everyone must know?

Every company must try to gauge the consumers' needs at least three years from now and target those needs.

What are the challenges for the FMCG sector today?

The basic challenge the FMCG sector faces today is that it has no answers for new questions.

It means they have captured most of the market that is there and now each company is vying for a larger market share out of the same pie.

What are your mantras for young advertising professionals today?

There are two mantras:

~ Curiosity

Have a curiosity for everything in life. You must be eager to know why things happen the way they do. This helps you to develop a broad perspective in life.
~ Building relationships

Remember, you are selling ideas and not products. You have to maintain relationships internally as well as externally.

First, you have to get your idea approved within the company; then you have to get it approved by the client.

Also, you are dealing with highly qualified and experienced people and they can be unpredictable at times. As such, it is all the more important to nurture strong relationships in the industry.  

This interview was compiled by management students of the Goa Institute of Management.

Next: Pradeep Mansukhani, CEO-Sales & Manufacturing, Marico Ltd shares his mantras for success.

Share your comments

 What do you think about the story?

Read what others have to say:

Number of User Comments: 2

Sub: Great!

Great! Bingo!! A common mantra that segregates leaders from Managers or taskmasters.

Posted by Ganesh Bhat

Sub: Hedgehog Concept

Yes I do agree with the author. Jim collins gave a concept for successful companies, which can be applied to personal professional lives as well. ...

Posted by Prabhash Kumar Choudhary


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