Book Review: An insiders account of running a business

07:05 AM Mar 22, 2020 |
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The full name of the book is ‘Back From The Brink: Turning Escorts Around’. One of the author Sharad Gupta is Chief Communication Officer, Corporate Marketing &Brand Strategy, and VP & Head, Technology Innovation at Escorts.

So, it is an insiders account who is still with the organization. But credit goes to the authors, they have been honest about the weakness of the organization. No attempt has been made to push things under the carpet.

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Rather, I felt they have been unfair to Rajan Nanda. He behaved the way he did, because of the business environment of the time. Wish, Rajan Nanda’s fight with Swaraj Paul and Indira Gandhi to prevent the hostile takeover of Escort was given some space.

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The difference in running the business between father and son has been covered nicely. Lot of businessmen’s sons will relate with and learn from the struggle of Nikhil Nanda to create his space.

One wonders why on the one hand authors have been brutally honest with lot of facts while on the other have completely omitted the feud between the brothers Rajan and Anil.

Highlight of the book is that it covers large number of managers who made the difference. In India, managers are rarely celebrated. Full marks to authors and Nandas for this.

Though the book covers all the business verticals of Escorts, it gives immense insight into the tractor business in India. Remember Indian economy depends on agriculture.

Business of tractor impacts the economy directly. The new initiatives in tractor sales will be big business and will be talked about in the future. The turnaround of a company involves turnaround of all the departments, from HR to Finance, Technology to Sales & Marketing etc. and the book has covered all of them in details. I have not come across ‘Dealer Management’, being covered in any corporate book in such details.

The pictures in the book add lot of value. Wish some of the advertisements were also given space. This book should be read by everyone who is interested in Indian business.

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