Manmohan Taparia
Jan 09, 2012

Looking back: 2011, Going ahead: 2012 - Tarun Jha

Following our list of ad men is the head of marketing, Skoda India, Tarun Jha. We find out what he opines.

Looking back: 2011, Going ahead: 2012 - Tarun Jha

Looking back: What have been the macro-level gains for India in 2011? 

Recognition of good work, strengthening of brands and the emergence of probity in the work that we all do.

What kind of work / campaigns / events impressed you the most in 2011; and why?

In 2011 we saw a lot of work that blurs the boundaries between what we call traditional and what is new age. The clever integration of ideas across media and platforms, plus the increasing participation of the end-consumer in the whole process of communications has been the leading theme of good work in this year. Finally we see the much prophesised change from one way to participative communications.

They say growth in India will be driven by rural markets, the 350 small towns spread across the country and PSUs. True or false? And why or why not?

Quite true. Urban markets are showing growth but much of it is related to the ever increasing numbers in our cities. It is true that growth will come from semi-urban and rural centres where the net consumption per head is going up.

How can we sustain a strong and diverse talent pool in ad land which has equity across the globe?

This is not going to be very easy. Years of neglect in scouting, nurturing and retaining talent is causing difficult times in ad land. We have been too busy in creating stalwarts and personalities and forgot to build a larger and wider talent pool. We need to do some soul-searching.

Harish Manwani, the COO of Unilever said: India is the future of the world. Does this statement reflect the reality? Your comment.

India will definitely play an important role in the future of the world but we will not be the only ones. There are many emergent nations that will decide the future of the world and we are definitely one of these.

If you had to start this business all over again in 2011, you would...

Listen more to customers and less to specialists and consultants.

If you could design the Indian business for 2012 with a clean sheet of paper, what were the three things you would do? 

Hire good listeners who would listen, understand and empathise.
Make everyone spend more time outside the office so that they can see, do and learn more.
Reduce information overload as not everyone needs to know everything.

What do you ask the person in the mirror every morning?

Are you going to make some small improvement in yourself today?

Campaign India

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