Management guru MB Athreya launches Manthan: Art & Science of Developing Leaders


New Delhi: India needs to prepare a pool of future leaders ready to scale greater heights in a fiercely competitive global economy that faces challenges of climate change, rising inequality and terrorism.

“Indian corporations, equipped to sustain current economic growth levels, too need to build a robust pool of leaders to beat the mighty Chinese economy, currently estimated to be five times bigger than India’s,” according to leading management guru Professor MB Athreya.

Prof Athreya who is credited with creating a policy for restructuring India’s telecom sector in 1991, was speaking to an audience of CEOs, policy makers, management and leadership experts at a book launch here during the weekend.

Prof Athreya, who has contributed the Foreword to the book, said young leaders need to cultivate competencies and the right mindset and attitude to mitigate newer challenges. He called for the urgent need to address gaps in ‘good corporate governance’ among leaders on the boards of today’s companies.

Prof Athreya said that leaders — corporate, social, national and world — present many learning opportunities. Alluding to the work done by social visionaries, strategists and outstanding leaders, he spoke of Prof Varghese Kurien, who helped farmers grouped as co-operatives, get a bigger share of the price paid by consumers. He also mentioned E Sreedharan who is helping build the Indian metro system with a unique sense of purpose.

Manthan: Art & Science of Developing Leaders, is a synthesis of dialogues emerging out of twelve leadership round table events organised by BIMTECH with 55 participants sharing their experiences, processes and best practices in leadership.

These leaders are from corporations, academia, and leadership consultancies across India. The sessions were held in association with National HRD Network under the leadership of then Director General Kamal Singh, who shared his perspectives on the subject.

The book has been edited by Prof KK Sinha, dean development, BIMTECH; Ajay Soni, Chief Learning & Development Officer, Aditya Birla Group and Indranil Mitra, Lead Faculty at NTPC’s Power Management Institute who participated in each of these sessions over three years and published by Bloomsbury.

The 440-page book deals extensively with leadership: the India way, leadership in current times, the development of future leaders, succession management, building global leaders in uncertain times, leading transformation, and driving innovation and building diversity.

Dr Harivansh Chaturvedi, Director, BIMTECH said that his institute has been developing ethical global leaders levered by the credo of ‘Excellence with Values’ through a series of management programs for beginners as well as those embarking on leadership roles in their organisations. A deep connect with the industry over the past three decades led us on our journey to present our shared knowledge in the form of Manthan: Art & Science of developing leaders that packs years of hard work and passion of authors, KK Sinha, Ajay Soni and Indranil Mitra.

Eminent management scholar Dr Pritam Singh, Chairman, LEAD Centre said that organisations must begin the process of seeding leaders for tomorrow, today. We need leaders who can adapt and manage in a turbulent world and they must have an ability to respect diversity of thinking, generations and gender.

Mr RV Shahi, former Power Secretary, said of all the attributes that exceptional leaders have, he found the ability to empower individuals and the capacity to respect, accept and encourage dissent, the most powerful.

The book is priced at Rs 500.