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Leadership bar to shift mid-50s to late 30s: KV Kamath Print E-mail
Written by Arjun   
Tuesday, 23 October 2007

Gender Neutral approach will lead the way to holistic development: KV Kamath

New Delhi : 10% growth rate for India is a given, said KV Kamath, Vice-President, CII & Managing Director & CEO, ICICI Bank Ltd, speaking at the CII-WR HR Summit and HR Award for Excellence organized by Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) in Mumbai today. However, this is not the usual 10% growth rate that India will achieve primarily because the mix behind this growth is dramatically different, said Mr. Kamath. Talking of Japan and China about three decades back, he said that the fulcrum of growth had been industry. But in India, 60% of the economy lies in the service sector with another 7% in relatively new sectors which is behind this growth. This in turn creates a skill-set issue, he added, and therefore, the HR function has to be innovative. Terming the HR professionals as 'innovators', Mr Kamath said that the lack of HR history has prompted them to come up with their own ideas. 

Mr Kamath also mentioned that the problem of people-shortage will be a long-term one. People shortage is not transitionary, he said. Therefore, the challenge before us is to acknowledge this fact and move on to address this issue through innovation.

 Leadership development is another challenge in India , Mr Kamath stated. The next decade will see Indians with an average age of below 30, pushing the leadership bar from mid-50s to late 30s. Also, diversity would pose another challenge. Calling for a neutral approach, Mr Kamath said that, it could lead the way to a holistic development. He also added that the challenges are actually mind-set issues and need to be dealt with accordingly.

 Mr Kamath felicitated Hindustan Unilever Ltd. and Marriott Hotels , India for having won  commendation certificates for Significant Achievement in HR Excellence in the CII (WR) HR Awards this year.

 Mr Kamath also released the Self-Assessment Guide which is based on the CII HR Excellence Award Model . This Guide is an attempt to demystify the complexity of the HR Award Model along with highlighting some of the specific best practices in Human Resources for each of the criteria.   This Guide will facilitate prospective companies to benchmark their practices and policies by doing their individual company assessment.

 According to R R Nair, Chairman, CII HR Summit, the Indian industry has worked hard on putting the basic building blocks of competitiveness into place. It has worked strongly to improve operational efficiency, quality, productivity and customer orientation. Nair added that the Indian economy has never had it so good: investment as a percentage of GDP is at a record high with three years of close to 9% growth with outstanding performance in the services and industry sectors, both growing at over 11%.   Indian industry is today resurgent, confident and global in its aspirations. The greatest challenge that Indian industry is beginning to grapple with - be it in small, medium or large sectors - is that of talent acquisition and retention. Corporates believe that soon Human Resources would be the driving force towards building India . Of the 320 million children in India between the ages of 6 and 16 only 10% will pass school and go beyond. Approximately 280 million people live below the poverty line and nearly 400 million people in India, live below $2 a day. India has the youngest population in the world.

 Mr Shrinivas Dempo, Chairman, CII Western Region , stated that the CII Western Region HR Award for Excellence is a one of its kind initiative in the Western Region with the sole purpose of surveying the HR practices and processes of participating organisations drawn from the four Western Region states of Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat and Goa.  He added that the Guide is an attempt to provide a structured approach for assessing its own maturity positioning on the various HR dimensions of the HR Excellence Model.

 In his closing address, Mr Banmali Agrawala, Deputy Chairman, CII Western Region said that with the younger generation getting to be in control in nearly every sphere, different challenges are being thrown up.
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