A short story to make this Delhi election episode simple for all my corporate friends.
A talented, energetic and ambitious guy, say Ramesh, was out to make a mark in the corporate world. He went for an interview for the job of CEO of a Indian arm of a multinational (say Unilever India) and did quite well by impressing the panel. He was finally shortlisted, but he asked for some time to think.
Elated by his recent success and confident of his good convincing skills, he planned to try his luck further. He applied for the position of Unilever Global CEO directly and was called for a discussion. Some excerpts from the interview
- Global panelists: You are a talented guy and have been selected by Indian arm, which trusted you. So you should fulfill the promises you made there as India CEO, gain some experience and then apply for Global position.
- Ramesh: Sir, I will not be able to work with Indian arm because of interference by Global team. To change the entire system, I want to start from the top.
- Panelists: But don’t you think that you should prove yourself first by working in India. We will give you ‘unconditional support’ to make you a success. Also, it will give you a chance to prove yourself and build management’s confidence in you.
- Ramesh: No, I want to start from the top
- Panel: But how do we trust you that you can perform
- Ramesh: I don’t know. Select me or else I will call media and tell that Unilever does not respect talent
Since, the guy was good, the management did not want to out rightly reject him. After long discussions and series of coaxing by management and also by family and friends, he agreed to accept the India CEO position. But he wrote a letter to the management with a list of conditions he would like to have, which are as follows:
- Vendors should give in writing that they will provide us raw materials at additional 10% discount
- Competitors will not launch similar/ better products – give us in writing
- Competitors should sell at prices higher than ours
- Government will give our company sales and excise tax subsidies
- Government will motivate people to buy our products and also give us preference in any govt tenders
- All the employees will work efficiently and at 120% efficiency. If they don’t, I will not be responsible
- Labor should give in writing that they will never go on strike nor will they ask for increase in salaries
- Distributors/ retailers will always give us preference for display space push our products
- …. and 10 more conditions
I am sure Delhiites will be getting a Deja vu feeling after reading this. Others just make the following replacements in the above story and read it again.
Ramesh = Arvind Kejrwal/AAP
Unilever India = Delhi govt.
Unilever Global = Govt at centre
Rest, everyone is intelligent enough.