Talent crunch is a pertinent issue for the Indian advertising industry, and leading agencies are taking various steps to stem this problem. O&M, which has been in the news recently for losing some of its senior people like Pratap Bose (former CEO, Ogilvy India), JC Giri (former President, Ogilvy Mumbai), and Anurag Gupta (former President, Ogilvy Action), has recently concluded its annual appraisals. Following this, the general spirit of the organisation is high.
And not surprising, because the agency has promoted many of its key people, which has come with significant salary hikes. Ogilvy officials divulged that on an average there had been a 30-40 per cent salary hike in the organisation. For many at O&M, this has been one of the best appraisals that the agency has seen in recent times. At least 12 officials have been promoted to Creative Directors, and there has been an elevation to Senior Creative Director as well.
This round of elevation was seen in the teams of Abhijit Avasthi, Anup Chitnis and Rajiv Rao – the Executive Creative Directors, South Asia, of the agency.
According to Avasthi, “People movement is a natural phenomenon anywhere, and it is for various reasons. Nobody can really stop that. When a company grows, the business grows and the people grow with it. We need to give added responsibilities and take care of our talent, and we have done just that.”
Amongst other elevations in Avasthi’s team, Mahesh Gharat is now elevated to Senior Creative Director. Chitnis’ team has also seen quite a few promotions. He said, “I am very happy for my team, they deserve it. The elevations would help our creative talent to do a better job in the future. This has been one of the best promotion rounds that the agency has seen and there is a certain degree of correction that has come in the salaries with that.”
Piyush Pandey, NCD and Vice Chairman, Ogilvy India and Ogilvy Asia Pacific, has been quoted on several occasions that talent was an issue with the Indian advertising industry. He had said that the industry should collectively and individually take necessary steps to ensure that advertising didn’t lose out talent to other disciplines or to clients. This move from Ogilvy India does appear to be a right step in that direction.