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Jugaad, frugal engineering ways need to go global: Smriti Irani

Our Bureau Kozhikode | Updated on November 25, 2017

Smriti Irani, Union HRD Minister. (file photo)

Indian management practices such as jugaad, langar system and frugal engineering ways need to be documented in a formal way and taken all over the world, said Smriti Irani, Union HRD Minister.

Delivering the inaugural address at the second Pan IIM World Management Conference held at IIM Kozhikode, on the theme ‘globalising Indian thought’, Irani said these practices are helping in unique ways to serve the needs of the society.

“Organisations like Arvind Eye Hospital and the dabbawalas of Mumbai have blended efficiency with value in a way that is unmatched in the world. Such contemporary and grassroot level practices need to be formulated and presented to the large businesses worldwide,” she elaborated.

The Pan IIM conference, held here from Nov 5 to 8, is one of the largest platforms in the country to exchange management research ideas and practices.

This conference is supported by the HRD Ministry and collectively organised by all the 13 IIMs. This annual conference started last year with IIM Calcutta hosting the first Pan IIM Conference in Goa on the theme of 'Emerging issues in management'.

Guillaume Sicard, President, Nissan India, in his keynote address said: “The key word in India is synthesis – synthesis of culture, ideas, generations and knowledge. While synthesis has defined India’s culture, heritage and art for centuries, it is also defining business environment, practices and processes.”

He focussed his address on “give and take” by referring to the exchange of two cultures and processes for the development of both economies - India and Japan.

Elaborating on Indian and Japanese business practices, Sicard said that In India, by nature everyone is emotional and instinctive. Due to this nature, there is a natural tendency to take business decisions that are not so much based on hard facts and data, but on more personal feelings and intuition.

“I would say, this is even more true, when we are working in one of the fastest growing economies and volatile market conditions - where one is conditioned to act and react quickly. Japanese, on the other hand, are very analytical and process oriented. They understand situations based on facts and figures. The Japanese cannot take a decision if there is no data substantiation,” he elaborated.

This process, said Sicard, forces one to take decision based on facts and not feelings. “It is most of the time more effective even though it is slower and might give less room for innovative thinking,” he added.

Referring to what is called the PDCA approach - Plan, Do, Check and Act, he said it is like a never-ending circle that is always climbing up on the curve of performance. “Between us, talking with my Japanese colleagues, I sometimes call it a state of continuous dissatisfaction,” he said.

Sicard concluded saying, “What we have achieved in India in such a short time wouldn’t have been possible without Japanese Kaizen and Indian jugaad!!”

Kaizen has helped Nissan to launch 24 models in four years, 61 per cent of which are being exported to more than 100 countries, he said. “And, it is through Kaizen that we have achieved 90 per cent localisation in our cars and developed over 200 suppliers,” he added.

Published on November 06, 2014

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