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BW Businessworld

Overview: Respect And Some More

BW’s MRC survey reiterates what the business fraternity has always known and the winner did take it all

Photo Credit : Ritesh Sharma


A brand for a company is like a reputation for a person,” said Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos. Globally, billions of dollars are blown up by firms to dress up their image to stakeholders. What the world thinks of you matters a lot, especially in the post-meltdown world. For firms (and folks alike), one way to find out is — “Mirror, mirror on the wall…” Many believe its fail-proof. But then, you have mirrors and mirrors; in any case, the fabled magic one broke a long while ago. Your best bet now is BW Businessworld’s annual survey of the country’s ‘Most Respected Companies’ carried out in association with IPSOS, a global market research company.

The Survey — a long-running property of BW Businessworld — is based on what respondents thought of companies on pre-defined parameters — innovativeness, quality and depth of the top management of a company, financials and return to shareholders, ethics and transparency, quality of product and services, people practices and talent management, global competitiveness, and technological prowess. This year, along with the response to the eight parameters, we decided to run a filter — have it validated externally.

So, the first-cut response to the survey was presented to a distinguished jury — Naina Lal Kidwai, Chairman-Advisory Board Advent India and past President of Ficci; Karan Singh, Managing Director at Bain & Company (India); Shailaja Chandra, a former Secretary to the Government of India and Chief Secretary-Delhi; Praveen Bhambani, Leader (private and entrepreneurial services), PwC (India) and Anurag Batra, Chairman and Editor-in-Chief of BW Businessworld.

Right up, the jurors raised a fundamental point — the parameters were not weighted; they had to be. As it was entirely possible respondents would have given their opinions on pure “gut feel”. “We can’t rubber-stamp the survey,” said a voice. Jurors had detailed, lengthy and rigorous discussion on each company by sector. They then arrived at a consensus to assign weights to the parameters.

Yet another issue that cropped up was as to how the validation of the financials were done. Well, the companies were culled from BW Businessworld’s flagship ‘Top 500 Companies’ survey, which is based purely on financial performance. Other matters of detail — the minimum threshold for a company to be up for judgement as an ‘MRC’ should have at least 50 respondents; they should be in the black for the last three years.

That given the woes in the sectors, the apparel/textile’ sector was not to be considered (Refer to ‘How We Did It’ on page 154 for details on the methodology and the weightages).

We also made a significant addition to our annual exercise. In addition to the survey,  BW Businessworld’s edit team also gave its short-list of companies based on their impressions to honour the truly outstanding. The Jury then decided that the ‘Global Indian Business Leader of the Year’ is V.C. Sehgal, Chairman of Motherson SumiSystems; the ‘Business Leader of the Year’ is Varun Berry, Managing Director of Britannia Industries; the ‘Woman Business Leader of the Year’ is State Bank of India’s chairperson, Arundhati Bhattacharya; the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ went to Natarajan Chandrasekaran Chairman, Tata Sons.

When it came to selecting the ‘Policy Reformer of the Year’, it was decided that it should — given its exceptional nature — be called the ‘Policy Reform of the Year’. No prizes for guessing — it went to ‘Team GST’.

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