Editorial Team

Young Leaders Forum, the youth wing of Indian Chamber Of Commerce organised an interactive session with Mr. Suresh Narayanan, Chairman & Managing Director Nestle India Ltd on June 1, 2022, at 12 pm in Kolkata, West Bengal.

Mr Pradeep Sureka, President, Indian Chamber of Commerce welcomed the audience with a speech, where he mentioned, “Mr Narayanan needs no special introduction as over 30 years of experience in FMCG industry with top leadership positions and major worldwide recognition. He’s not only a strong missionary leader but someone who believes and practices good guidance as a necessary discipline otherwise he won’t be leading a company like Nestlé. You know there’s a Chinese expression which says, ”may you live in interesting times.” I’d say that uninteresting times are more life-enhancing. It is these crisis times that have always witnessed the evolution of the fighting spirit of mankind. Currently, the world is going through a prolonged crisis starting as a full-grown health crisis that further developed into a global economic crisis. every major international crisis be it the Spanish Flu, the Great Economic Depression or the World War 1/2 the world has emerged stronger and more resilient, not just for countries but for individuals too. We look forward to hearing from Mr. Narayanan today about his journey on how he has faced the challenges in his life, handled crisis situations and learnt from his experiences and experiences of other and reached where he is good and his goals ahead in life. We look forward to hearing from him, learning from him, and especially I am sure the youth is going to go back inspired to hear from him the subject Leading in Crisis.”

The session was then taken over by industry veteran Mr. Suresh Narayanan, who has more than 30 years of experience in the FMCG sector and has held senior management and top leadership roles in major international corporations. At present he is Chairman and Managing Director of Nestle India Ltd. Mr. Narayanan talked about his perspectives on “Leading in Crisis” in the program. He stated, “Never take advice in life but to share perspective and hence what I can offer is a wisdom of a lifetime and a shared perspective of a professional.

Crisis is going to be the new normal in the current scenario and leadership defines how to cope up with it. Managing self is the resolution to more than the 50 percent of the problem, I have come to this realisation before the pandemic convinced me. All of us in crisis have faced destruction and despair, yet all of us have had hope because there are always proceedings that humans are not so grand after all, that the self-seeking and self-oriented nature of human beings can go beyond and can be charitable. Today in the pandemic and post pandemic if you are running an enterprise which is national or international you have to learn to trust the person. Hard skills and negotiations are important, but governance, ethics and practices are important as well. He goes by the quote of Nelson Mandela – The greatest glory in living lies not in never failing, but in rising every time we fall.”

The closing remarks were addressed by Mr Mudit Beriwal, Chairman of Young Leaders Forum, who expressed, “All of us get inspired by knowing about great achievers and corporate leaders like Mr. Narayan. But it is really a journey to success that we have learnt today in this learning and engaging session. This session enriched us with key insights revolving around the topic leading in crisis. In today’s environment leaders face tremendously dynamic difficulties. Mr Narayanan’s words give us hope and courage to look forward and motivate us in testing beliefs in order to bring out positivity in crisis situation and believe that we shall overcome the situations very soon and India will grow in the upcoming days.”

The session was very informative and helpful for the young leaders. There was a Q&A section as well, which helped the participants gain perspective on the crisis at hand today.

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