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Showing posts from September, 2007

The bane of the buzz - by Sanjay Anandaram

A friend narrated this to me this morning. He was on a business trip to Taiwan and bumped into a colleague from a much larger division of the same company at Taipei airport. After exchanging some chit-chat, the colleague told my friend that he was likely to be now based out of Taipei as it was an important part of the division’s “China strategy”. On further enquiry it transpired that instead of long distance phone calls and faxes and emails to Taiwanese vendors and partners from Bangalore, he would now be able to visit them and make local phone calls and send local faxes and email! Ostensibly, this would result in enhanced relationships leading to furtherance of the division’s “China strategy”.

One of the banes of our times has been the gross trivialization of word meanings. Words like “innovation” and “strategy” have been almost trivialized into banality - almost every trivial act of improvement or approach is either an innovation or a strategy. There’s this almost manic desire to be…

Following up good PR - by Sanjay Anandaram

Last week I had two very different experiences while visiting two well known global companies. Experiences that made an impact on me and experiences that every startup company can learn from.

I arrived at the fist company a little before my 10am appointment and walked into the reception area. There was pandemonium there with a large number of visitors huddled around the reception desk. The long desk in turn was “manned” by about 6 or 7 smartly dressed men and women and had 3-4 computers on it. I mentioned the name of the person I’d come to visit to one of these persons and I received a blank stare. I repeated the name and was asked if I had the extension number of the person. I did not. I repeated the name again as well as the designation of the person. Finally, the name and a mobile number was located. The mobile number turned out to be an old one. The staff were running around without any clue as to who my host was. The cell phone number I had for the person didn’t work either. I wa…

An Exit Strategy Before I even Enter?! - by Sanjay Anandaram

It is often said that in India, as in some other Asian countries, entrepreneurs tend to be extremely control oriented, tend to be very focused on retaining generational ownership of the company, and view investors as necessary evils and not as partners in creating value. Investors usually tend to be viewed as lenders or project financiers and generally receive the same callous treatment as did banks of yore. However, as more and more private equity capital (including venture capital) flows into companies to satisfy the entrepreneurial aspirations of globalization, scale, and market value, the realization that good governance, transparency, investing in business growth and professional management lead to value creation has gained strong currency.

For startups therefore it is important to appreciate the role of investors as stakeholders and partners in the creation of a successful and valuable business. And part of the appreciation should manifest itself in the realization that invest…