Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Week 4 Blog 3: Agility --> Dominance

"Think big, think fast, think ahead. Ideas are no one's monopoly" - Dhirubhai Ambani

Reliance Industries Limited was founded in 1966 by Indian entrepreneur Dhirubhai Ambani. His is a dreamlike rags-to-riches story of a modest gas station attendant who went on to become the founder of India's largest private sector conglomerate company by market value. Often referred to as "The Polyester Prince" , Dhirubhai built his empire on the tenets of Strategic and Portfolio agility coupled with the process of backward integration.

" There is no invitation for making profits" - Dhirubhai Ambani

Strategic Agility: He was known for his charismatic ability to wait for the right moment and making hay when the sun shines. For instance, in 1990, he sensed the digital transformation movement and its implications on the way business will be conducted in the coming decades, thus he diversified from chemicals, power to the growing sectors of petrochemicals and telecommunications.

"Human resource is the best resource" - Dhirubhai Ambani
"We bet on people" - Dhirubhai Ambani

Portfolio Agility: From the readings we understand that a lot of issues arise when a company with vested interests in different spheres tends to increase the re-usability of resources. Dhirubhai depicted fine business acumen when it came to Portfolio Agility. He believed in employing the best people and he paid them the most in that era. His subordinates described him as someone who they can look forward to and talk to whenever they want. They described him as the most approachable boss they had. He developed a relationship with them that extended beyond the realms of work. He had life-long confidantes who were ready to go the extra mile for him. Thus making it simpler and quicker to efficiently manage them.

  1. Competing Through Organizational Agility (Sull, The McKinsey Quarterly, 2010 Number 1)
  2. Strategic Sourcing: From Periphery to the Core (Gottfredson, Puryear, and Phillips,
    Harvard Business Review, February 2005)
  3. Capitalizing on Capabilities (Ulrich and Smallwood, Harvard Business Review,
    June 2004)
  4. Dhirubhai Ambani, from Wikipedia
  5. Hubpages
Author: Shubham Raj

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