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Mr. Pruthiraj Pradhan - Report on Trends in Retail-Post Pandemic

Mr. Pruthiraj Pradhan - Report on Trends in Retail-Post Pandemic

Dated – 3rd July 2020

ITM Business College, Navi Mumbai had organised webinar on the topic “Trends in Retail-Post Pandemic” on Friday, July 3, 2020. The speaker was Mr Pruthiraj Pradhan. He is an ITM Alumni from 2009-11 batch and has total experience of 12+ year. Mr Pruthiraj has worked with top companies like Vodafone, ICICI bank, Hindustan Pencil Private Limited, Adani Wilmar and Bajaj Electricals limited. He has served at different levels starting from off role employee to senior manager employee. Currently he is working with Bajaj Electricals Limited and he has completed more than 4 years with the company.

He started the session with the quote, “If I knew then, what I know today?” It means, if we knew what we know today, probably today our lives have been different. After this he shared a very simple yet important thing. He shared 3 ways of listening. The first way is Listen to prove yourself right. Second way is Listen to make the speaker wrong and the third way is Listen to what is being said, process it and then choose to accept it, or reject it. He told to follow the 3rd way in our life. He also talked about today’s environment. On what level do we want to play? “Know” about anything completely. We are living in the Google era where whatever we want to know we can just Google it. It is no more a challenge. So Knowing or knowledge is not a problem. The problem is doing or implementing that knowledge. If we will not implement or do the things on a regular basis there is no use of that knowledge. By doing or implementing the knowledge in our day to day activities we can become a better person.

Talking about the Retail industry, he told that people think that retail is only about brick-and-mortar model. It is not that. The potential in retail industry is immense. The customer today has so many options to buy. They buy things from “kiranas” store i.e. general trade. In modern trade customers have options like Demart, Reliance Fresh, and Hypercity etc. And the upcoming trade will be e-commerce or social commerce. He then shared a small data. The unorganised kiranas will DE grow in upcoming 5 years. Today the share of unorganised kiranas is about 84%, which means in the coming 5 years it will fall to 77%. For organised brick-and-mortar stores they will not grow beyond 25%-30%. But the organised online or the e-commerce numbers will double in the coming 5 years. This means there is huge amount of opportunities both for the customer’s and for the job seekers. This is where entire industry is moving towards. He then added about one more sector in retail i.e. CSD (Canteen Store Department) and CPC (Central Police Canteen). These are the sectors where businesses are growing very fast. Mainly the made in India SKU’s are growing rapidly.

He further added, now the businesses are divided into two parts, the Pre-Covid era and the Post-Covid era. We know Pre-Covid era. He talked about the skills required in the Post-Covid era. The Post-Covid era would be a new norm. We all will live our life in a new way. Mr Pruthiraj had come up with the 5 skills that are required in the Post-Covid era. First skill is “Agility”. It means having the faculty of quick motions in limbs. We have to take things on our way, experience it and learn from it. Second skill is “Collaboration”. It means how good we are in collaborating with our friends, family, seniors, and competition. The third skill is “up skilling”. We should always do up skilling to improve ourselves. The fourth skill is “Coaching and mentoring”. We should always coach our juniors and take the help of our seniors. We should always share our knowledge with others. The fifth and the last skill is “Networking”. It means how strong your network is and how productive you are.

He then shared a small video titled “World is changing. Are you?” In the first slide it talks about the number of internet devices in 1992 was 1,000,000, in 2008 it was 1,000,000,000 and today it is 30,000,000,000. There are about 540,000 words in the English language. About 5x as many as during Shakespeare’s time. In 1990, it took 13 years to sequence a human genome. Now, it takes an hour. We are living in the information age. The amount of data in the world is doubling every two years. By 2020, 1.7 megabytes of new information will be created every second for every human on the planet. Reddit is a website of user- generated links and content. Votes promote stories to the front page. Reddit is now the 1st news website. There are 5.9 billion searches on Google every day. This is 200 times more than in the year 2000. This video gives a wider picture of the world around us. Then he told a very famous quote by Jack Weich, Former chairman and CEO of GE, “If the rate of change in the outside exceeds the rate of change on the inside, the end is near.” It means we should keep changing is we don’t we will vanish one day. Apart from it, he told about the concept of VUCA world. VUCA stands for Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity. This concept we should always remember in this changing world and in our corporate life. Volatility means how your organisation is changing according to the market. Uncertainty means there are lot of things which will be uncertain. So are you ready for that situation. If you are not ready then you will miss the opportunity. Complexity talks about the business. Businesses are becoming more and more complex. The dynamics are changing every day. So are you ready for it. Ambiguity is the most important. People will have different interpretations about same thing in different manner. So how do we remove it is the challenge for us. Then he suggested some success factors which will help in the VUCA world. They are as follows:-

  • Don’t lose sight of the big picture.
  • Set up incremental milestones and develop consistent messaging and clear direction.
  • Carve out open space on your calendar to think on a regular basis.
  • Uncertain times bring opportunities for bold moves.
  • Encourage networks rather than hierarchies.
  • Develop independent thinkers.
  • Focus on how the company can improve in the future.

He shared another very famous Japanese quote, “None of us are as smart as all of us” it means that may be we might be weak at certain things and my colleague must be strong at the same thing and vice versa. If we put together our strength then we might become stronger. He further talked about the Business for Whatsapp. It is used for the promotional activities of the product. We can reach many customers through it. It is a two way communication. We can use it for taking the orders and for promoting our new SKU’s. Then he shared a video which talked about social commerce on Instagram. How shopping is implemented on Instagram. The video shows Artificial Intelligence is used in shopping. He also about the chat BOTs. Most of the queries are resolved with the help of chat BOTs only. He ended up the session by suggesting some important skills that everyone should have in today’s world that are Presentation skills, writing skills and reading skills.

The session was very much informative. All of people learned many new things and most important the skills required in the Post-Covid era. Rashmitha, the class representative of RMM batch ended the session with a vote of thanks.