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Telling the Story of the ‘Indian Dream’
Two decades of economic liberalization ushered in significant changes to India’s business landscape. One important change has been the development of competitive capabilities of Indian companies and the increase in business, professional, and personal exchanges with global businesses, workforces, and ideas. This development has significant implications on India’s soft power projection.
A noticeable trend has been the overseas forays of Indian companies and emergence of the ‘Indian Multinational Corporation.’ Among the known companies, the acquisition of Corus and JLR by Tatas, Mahindra’s ambitions to enter the North American SUV market, Vedanta Resources record maiden public offering on the London Stock Exchange (LSE), and Airtel’s foray into Africa. But consider the following examples of ‘Made in India’:
While these developments underline the entrepreneurial potential of India and significantly advance the ‘Made in India’ brand, there are interesting repercussions in the cultural realm as well. The expansion of these companies also means the export of Indian values in terms of attitudes towards the following:
Tata Group chairman Ratan Tata’s statement in May 2011, condemning British managers as lazy is an interesting example. Not only has his comment resulted in reams and reams of coverage, but also led to an explosion of social media conversations on the issue. Contrasting the managerial attitudes of India and UK, Mr. Tata famously said,
In this context, global competency skills are the new requirement for many Indian managers including the ability to collaborate and compete across cultures. This significantly shapes national image and contributes towards telling a story of India. For corporate India, it is important to understand the ‘idea of India’, to tell its story, and for the policy establishment, the onus is to integrate the efforts. It’s no longer India’s economic story, it is the story of the ‘Indian Dream.’
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