Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Why Customer is an undisputed king!

A key driver for financial success and longevity of businesses is the relationship with the customer; understanding their needs and what makes them successful, has been a key for successful companies to thrive for periods in excess of 100 years.
An article in the Journal of creating Value elucidates that no company survives without the customers allowing them to survive. Since no company can exist without customers, embracing the customer as a valued asset should lead to longevity and market leadership. In other words, Companies are powered by customers whether they like it or not or they choose to embrace it or not. Companies must be able to anticipate needs and react to market changes more rapidly than their competitors.
The article cites examples of some companies that survived for 50+ years and some that fell behind and died, one such example is Kodak which was once a market leader but later it fell behind in their market place; Kodak believed in a ‘coat by the mile and sell by the inch strategy’ as making and developing film was a profitable business. Even though a Kodak engineer invented the digital camera, Kodak chose to focus on the film business as it suited their internal needs and culture but did not focus on ‘why’ customers wanted to take pictures and what they valued in the process. On the contrary, IBM is famous for its turnaround from a market leader of computer hardware to a global leader in IT solution Services. IBM, in spite of deep financial problems at the time, was able to make this transition because its service relationships with their customers allowed them to learn more about their customers markets and industries. The more they understood, the greater the breadth of services they could offer.

The findings of this article suggest ‘relationship’ to be the most valuable attribute that company could provide to its customers. Relationship in business is not about brand value, brand awareness, linkages on social media or knowing the name of your customer’s dog. Relationship in this context is knowing what makes your customer successful in terms of positive outcomes when they engage your company and how you contribute to the value outcome. Your customers evaluate your performance everyday by how they choose to spend their money. They hold the power and are your most valuable asset.

Click here to read Powered by Customers: Relationship Is Key to Surviving 100 Years in Business  from Journal of Creating Value!

Friday, August 14, 2015

Are the Tribals really benefitting from Forest acts and policies?

Over the century, Forest acts and policies have claimed to conserve and provide the equitable and justifiable distribution of forest resources among the human populace. Since pre and post-independence periods the development of National forest policies and acts have undergone many changes from revenue generation to livelihood generation and finally to sustainability. Still, these leaps could not provide social equity and justice to the deserving communities.

According to the recent article in The Economic times, “Over 70% of tribals reside in the central region of India, which though resource-rich, is home to the poorest. They have suffered due to the anti-tribal, market-oriented forest policies which depleted gatherable biomass, or due to displacement from their ancestral lands when these were diverted for other purposes. Tribals generally react to their pauperization in anomie and endure their exploitation silently.”  

 An article in the International Journal of Rural Management attempts to address the major trends in the Indian forest policies from 1865 to 2006 and their relationships with the rights and livelihood of the forest dwelling tribal communities (FDTCs).

The formulation of laws probably begins with the assumptions that these are meant to protect, conserve and manage forest resources. Throughout these policies and acts the rights and interests of FDTCs are ignored. The article, in detail reviews these forest legislations in the pre- and post-colonial periods and also talks about the trauma that tribals faced due to evictions from their ancestral lands that created turbulence among them. Tribal society the repository of social capital at one time has lost its value. The de facto occupied and cultivated lands of tribal are trademarked as illegal and encroachment by the State and their interests have been marginalized.
The article concludes on the note that Forest policies and acts have become merely the instruments for the government to pursue its economic interests. The recent Forest Rights Act (FRA) gives scope to the FDTCs to participate in the process of forest governance and thus believed to address the historical injustice. But at the implementation level transparency and accountability of FRA is uncertain. Autocratic nature of the centre leads to over-exploitation, mismanagement and inequitable distribution of existing forest resources.

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Friday, August 07, 2015

Indian Media in a Globalised World!

India is a country with the world’s largest newspaper market, second largest telecommunications market, third-largest television market, and second-largest Facebook community but even today it is  virtually absent from most mainstream global communication studies within academia. In revenue terms, India’s share of the global media sector still remains small but within the top 15 media and entertainment economies, only India has had consistent growth rates for years.
An article in the Journal of Emerging Economy Studies concentrates on Indian media and its future directions and how it acts as a significant lever of society offering an unparalleled view into the daily theater of India.
Combined with the rise of the other device that has grown faster than toilets in India—the mobile phone—television has fundamentally reshaped Indian democracy and emerged as a critical social lever. Within the top 15 media and entertainment economies, however, only India has had consistent over 15 percent growth rates for years. This is why there is such a global interest in Indian media at the moment with companies like Disney and Viacom flocking to Indian shores. In subsectors like the newspaper industry, the contrast is even more strident. India, along with China, is the country in the world where newspaper subscriptions continue to grow. At a time when newspapers around the world are dying, over a 100 million newspaper copies hit Indian streets every morning; this number clearly illustrates the size and scope of Indian media.
Media touches virtually everyone in Indian society, but in the din of daily headlines, it is important to delineate some fundamental questions—Who really owns Indian television? What are the patterns of control nationally and across regional languages? Are there any commonalities across languages and regions? Can we discern underlying trends that drive the business and what are the politics? These questions that are at the heart of the debate about modern media, the article seeks to answer them.
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