WPP & Kantar launches Institute for Real Growth, a cross-industry initiative, in India

IRG aims to help organisations focus on sustained, long-term growth by equipping leaders with best practice approaches to their strategy, structure, capability and leadership

e4m by exchange4media Staff
Updated: Aug 26, 2019 4:50 PM  | 4 min read



WPP and Kantar has announced the launch of a global cross-industry initiative - Institute for Real Growth (IRG) in India. IRG is the first programme of its kind to help CEOs, CMOs and other senior business leaders to drive more effective growth strategies.

The not-for-profit, independent Institute, co-founded by WPP along with Facebook, Google, Kantar, LinkedIn, the NYU School of Professional Studies (NYUSPS), Saïd Business School at the University of Oxford, Spencer Stuart and Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) aims to help organizations focus on sustained, long-term “real growth” by equipping leaders with best practice approaches to their strategy, structure, capability and leadership.

IRG was launched in India at an event titled ‘Real Growth Summit’ held recently in Gurgaon and attended by numerous top leaders from major corporates. The IRG study, which differentiates growth Overperformers from Underperformers, undertaken by the institute across 73 countries was unveiled by Marc de Swaan Arons, Co-Founder, Institute for Real Growth at the event.

The findings from India are based on an online quantitative study conducted among 600 business professionals based in big metros, preceded by in-depth vision interviews with over 30 CEOs to understand their view point on growth and ways to drive it.

The key findings pertaining to India from the global growth study revealed that:

 The growth drivers that define an overperforming company globally remain alike even in India
 Growth is very subjective in India – it varies from industry to industry. While it is revenue increase for some, it is driving better customer experience for some. Some define growth as bringing in higher automation; while some companies measure their success from the growth that they provide to their people.
 In India, the overperforming companies are the most ‘employee friendly’ – they always put their employees first followed by customer satisfaction and then, revenue.
 Overperforming companies put data and analytics at the core of all strategic decisions and are clearly more long term focussed than their peers
 Given that they believe people and not technology/processes are the key to success – they are very well connected both internally and with their external partners
 Keen to adopt new business models – they believe that incremental growth can only come from new/unconventional business models

The speakers at the ‘Real Growth Summit’ included D Shiv Shivakumar, Group Executive President, Aditya Birla Group; Sandeep Kataria, CEO, Bata India; Vipul Prakash, COO, MakeMyTrip and Goibibo, and Vikram Mehra, MD, Saregama.

The keynote speech was delivered by Dr Pronab Sen, Country Director, India Programme of the International Growth Centre.

At the Institute for Real Growth’s first event hosted by WPP and Kantar in Gurugram, CVL Srinivas, Country Manager, India for WPP, said: “The study highlights that the definition of growth is very subjective in India. This reality makes it critical for businesses to identify what will drive real growth for their business. IRG has been founded for this very reason – to help organisations achieve sustained long-term growth by enabling its leaders with proven approaches which are based on knowledge, innovative thinking and peer to peer coaching and partnership.”

Preeti Reddy, CEO – South Asia, Insights Division, Kantar, said: “Growth is hard and is becoming even harder. Companies are realising that the old formulas no longer guarantee growth and that growth itself is becoming episodic. They need to develop an architecture for ‘real growth’ and approaches that will deliver sustained all round growth. We are delighted to collaborate with the IRG program and inspire clients and our leaders to embrace these new approaches to meet the challenges of growth.”

Marc de Swaan Arons, Co-founder of the Institute for Real Growth, said: “Together with my Co-founder Frank van den Driest, we have expanded on WPP’s global growth study to create an industry-wide program that is focused on helping senior leaders make better business decisions and steer their organisations on the growth journey. IRG is the only platform where growth leaders can learn from world-class Overperformers and topic experts and collaborate with peers to solve their specific business growth challenges.”

The participants in the programme benefit from a curriculum approved by the IRG Founder Advisory Board and will receive an NYU School of Professional Studies Certificate of Completion in Real Growth Leadership. The programme comprises a series of workshops that provide close collaboration with peers, the latest in-depth research, world-class case studies, expert speaker insight and individual coaching, personalised to each attendee’s leadership and organizational business growth needs.

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