Discuss about the Management of Engineering and Technology.
There are several world class entrepreneurs with diverse interests and backgrounds with different contributions to the world. Whatever may be their operational domain and the location, generally most of the highly successful entrepreneurs do have some common Personality characteristics like undeterred zeal and passion to achieve the best in life. They generally have a dream and committed to the action plan. They generally obliged to their chosen action plan irrespective of practical challenges they face in business. Also another unique characteristic of highly successful entrepreneurs is that they never hesitate to take a risk and to abide for the challenges they face in life. The business empires and the recognition achieved by them are truly phenomenal and it continues to provide inspiration to the people from all walks of life. The current report is a prolific study on the character traits and achievements of Ajim Premji, the Current CEO of Wipro, who is 41st richest person in the world with assets ranging to about $41 billion dollars. He is an electrical engineer qualified from Stanford University. As an engineering graduate he had proven talent and analytical skills, he could not able to continue his education as his father passed away and the subsequent responsibilities he got to take up the business(Mainkutty,2004).
When his father passed away, Wipro discontinued his studies and taken over his family reigns of Western Vegetable Indian Products (WIPRO). His phenomenal growth started with the transformation of his soap and oil manufacturing company to the global scale. He is by nature very clever and is highly known for his quick and intelligent business tactics as an entrepreneur. Wipro fluid power is another successful venture of the Ajim in the domain of truck fluidics and hydraulics. However, with the introduction of IBM into the Indian market, Ajim took control of the computer industry growth for Wipro. Wipro rose as a prominent computer manufacturer as well it also became well known medical computers manufacturers of the country. He got honorary degrees from several universities as well received Padma vibhushan award from the Indian government. Also, Wipro Premji is well reputed and honored philanthropist (Ramamurthi, 2001).
About Ajim Premji:
Ajim Premji is the key person and has played an instrumental role in turning up the $2 million hydrogenated fat company of 1960's to the current company with a profile of $8 billion IT, BPO and R&D Service organization (Rao, 2007). Like several other world popular entrepreneurs, Premji's focus is always on innovation and the customer-centric services. For him the customer is always at the core of every activity. Premji always keeps deep expertise in technology with an equally clear understanding of the customer industries. Business value is a paramount characteristic of the company and he always delivers the right service to the customers. The service quality and the prediction are the two business tools extensively used by Premji in all his business operations. He never hesitated to employ business analytic tools like Six sigma, PCMM and lean in his business practices. He always stood first to appreciate and adapt the business innovation and the latest business practices in his group companies. He always believes in speed, simplicity and excellence (Koti, 2013). They are the key aspects of his success. His humbleness and down to earth attitude along with the strong belief that social responsibility is an essential duty of organizations made him highly respected successful entrepreneur of the world. He received several awards and recognitions for his outstanding business achievements coupled with rare social responsibility attitude. There were awards and rewards both from national and international organizations (Lahagu, 2001).
Entrepreneurial characteristics of Azim Premji:
Premji often says that when it is required to know our weaknesses, it is equally significant to know our strengths. The inherent message is that one need to go ahead with all the necessary confidence and courage to take up the risk and should never get distracted with fear of failure or due to risk aversion. Premji mixes spiritual perspectives in the business operations. His philosophy lies in cherishing the good in one’s self, he believes that when good in self is cherished, it will result in enormous strength and will mitigate weakness from one’s mind. When he took over the control of the hydrogenated fat and Oils Company, ownership from this father, the profile of the company is very small and he never hesitated to take bold steps and innovative initiatives and challenges to keep up the company progression. The current achievement of the company for so many billions of dollars revenue international company has happened only due to the sheer strength of the company’s commitment and risk-taking nature. Another important characteristic of Premji is down to earth attitude; he believed that if the success climbs up to the head, it will pave the way to the failure. He strongly believed that undeterred commitment towards the target, while remaining down to earth in attitude will make one excel in life. Far sight is always very important in dynamic and highly competitive contemporary business world. Being far-sighted is like being fore-warned. Being fore-warned is like being fore-armed, hence continuous business monitoring with efficient business analytics is core needs of business success. Premji's entrepreneurial spirits always enabled him to have fore sight in developing existing business as well in undertaking new business initiatives. When Premji ventured into the computer profession no one believed that it will be going to be a phenomenal success. Competitors realized the great move of Premji only after he has taken up a great initiative with business acumen ship to venture into the computer domain. Sticking to the faith and belief in core values makes him different. He always believed that the trust in core values and adherence to the same will manifest in core strength to the organization. He also believed that attempts are what are needed and they will bring success along with. Also whatever may be the consequences and the challenges we face, have faith in what you believe and stick to them, this is an essential trait that makes entrepreneurs get result in whatever they venture in (Gupta, 2008).
Premji Leadership style and core values of business:
Premji leadership style is characterized by strategic vision and crisp communication style. Whatever venture and endeavor that Premji undertakes, it will be characterized by very strategic focus and excellent skills of planning and management (Kumar, 2012). Also, Premji is quite successful in making communication and motivating his employees (Capelli, 2010). He is always successful in communicating what exactly he wants to communicate to his employees. Also, he is quite successful in motivating his staff and admirers alike by remaining himself as an inspirational business leader of the organization. He always followed the principles which he used to say (Khan, 2011).
Premji believes in hard-work and he let his accomplices also work hard. He always encourages and motivates the people who do work hard. He strongly believed that success comes with 10% inspiration and 90% perspiration. Premji is quite successful in lifting up his business empire several folds only with non-stop hard-work. He followed an undeterred commitment to hard-work from his early days and even now he continues to be one of the most hardworking person. Aiming high is his attitude, he never compromised with what he has and he always works for achieving higher and higher in business. Absolutely there is nothing that comes across to shatter his will and determination, when attempting to achieve the highest in life. Premji is always optimistic and always believes his conscious and his own analysis than anything else. He went forward to invest in computer industries when many other are skeptical to enter into the business. He ventured first into the hardware business of the computer industry and later overtaken software part as well. He played a key role in taking up several innovative and challenging projects in difficult situations. Ultimately it is proved to the world that he is once again correct in thinking process. Independence in thinking and innovation formed key traits of the Premji in all his business activities. He never bent for the established believes; neither carried away by others opinions. He retained always his gut feelings and is highly instrumental in adhering to his own beliefs and opinions in business strategies. Perseverance and excellent organizational capabilities are his positive character features. In his own words, he used to say Dare to dream big and never stop till the goal is reached. Premji particularly encouraged commitment to the social vision and emphasis on physical fitness to combat stress in a profession. Premji advised all entrepreneurs to focus on much broader social vision and commitment to the physical fitness. He believed that these properties are supportive for success in a contemporary business world (Bagchi, 2005).
Aim Premji is known for humbleness, he still monitors the staff in Bangalore and he used to say that if your salary is used to waste the electricity bill and toilet paper, say a big no and start conserving it. Inspite of being the top ranked richest person of the world and of the country, he still saw preferring auto rickshaws several times from the airport, an indication of his humbleness and down to earth attitude in life (Bhatnagar, 2013).
Perception of failure:
Premji used to believe and often says that failure is stepping stone for success. He also said several times that failure is an essential part of success. He said failure is an inevitable and unavoidable part of business innovation (Premji, 2006). The detriment of success in any organization is leadership in general, but for Premji leadership mean the single minded pursuit of excellence. He says that excellence endures and sustains. It is beyond motivation into that realm of inspiration (Chattopadhyay). Excellence can be as strong a uniting force as solid vision. Excellence, as per Premji is not something expected from some cross-sectional people of the entire organization, it should be a collective striving and obsession. It is the start and breathes of life for survival for any organization. Excellence needs to be achieved and to be materialized in two aspects. Firstly it is to be from external influences. Clients and customers will insist for excellence and the competition prevailing in the market will also insist organizational excellence as a mandatory requirement. Apart from that everyone should strive for excellence internally, it is dutiful work of every human being to continuously fight with self and raise the bar of excellence index, there is no another alternative for long-term survival in the market(Premji).
Wipro Premji strongly believes that any thing in life can be negotiated except integrity in character. Ethical leadership is strongly needed for building a world-class institution. Essential requirements for business excellence are values, vision, innovation, leadership and social commitment (Shah, 2011). To meet the future challenges and demands we have to change a lot apart from our believes and core values, since these are essentially the building blocks that keep us united as an organization. Another important trait that is seen with Premji mode of operations is making employees part of the profit sharing, Wipro equity reward trust is one such programme where Ajim Premji offered a share in the rewards to all his employees of the company (Premji, 2006).
Philanthropy as a way of life:
The greatest human character which is unique and worked to let Premji stand alone is his exceptional inclination towards social good and benevolence. This makes him share unique social responsibility with few world famous entrepreneurs of all time (Coulson). At several instances Premji came forward and spent several millions of dollars for the welfare of society. Particularly focused on the disabled and the disadvantageous people of the society (Chandhra Das, 2009). Azim Premji started Azim Premji foundation with an ambitious and overreaching goal to contribute to a just, equitable humane and sustainable society in the country. Azim Premji strived to facilitate better education to the disadvantaged people of the country (Azim, n.d.). Azim Premji foundation was provided with several directives in this direction to uplift the quality of education in the society. The main factors that are considered by the educational mission of the Foundation are 1) To create talent in the country- Where in a large mass of people will be provided with vision, competence, and deep motivation to engage in social action. The important part of the mission is to develop fresh talent and to build capacity in the existing talent. Typically this consists of strengthening the mass of teachers, educators of the society, educational functionaries as well as leaders and other developmental professionals in the society. Another important aspect of the mission is to create knowledge. This is actually a process that works on to provide deeper insights into the solutions needed by the complexities of the education and other developmental issues of the society. This is actually a culture that works out to provide evidence-based decisions in policy and program (Eye). As a whole the intention of the mission to provide knowledge to the company. Also, the foundation is working out to establish chain (network) of academic institutions in line with the requirements of the society at large and each of the institutions is equipped with all the necessary resources and objectives aimed to reach the educational requirements of the society at large. Through strong institutional networks, continuing education and field impact and awareness activities, communities and other related functionaries will be provided with an opportunity to consider the issues in education and development and by doing so this will facilitate betterment of the quality of the educational system (Hamm, 2007).
Inspirational quotes as said by Wipro Premji:
“If people are not laughing at your goals your goals are too small.”
“In our way of working, we attach a great deal of importance to humility and honesty; with respect for human values, we promise to serve our customers with integrity.”
"We believe this combination of excellence in operations and strong execution of our strategy is critical to achieving our vision. We will continue to focus on both in future as well."
Wipro's Azim Premji is a typical entrepreneur with engineering background with excellent analytical abilities. What makes him unique is his high perseverance, unchallenged commitment to excellence from both internal and external perspectives, risk-taking the attitude to aim and achieve high, never hesitates for innovation, have excellent values as his core strength and always work towards what he believes is right and never gets shattered by challenges in business (Businessinsider, n.d.). His commitment to his belief is time tested (Azimpremjiinitiatives, n.d.).
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