Amit is a MarTech evangelist who has transformed marketing through his passionate focus on Digital eCommerce.  With extensive knowledge of markets, channels & consumers across the length & breadth of India as well as neighbouring countries, Amit believes in reaching out to customers through a platform-neutral, omnichannel approach and changing mindsets by delivering results.

My Professional Journey

I have been a marketing professional right since I began my professional journey with Quantum Communications in 2001. I picked up key roles as I moved to Lintas and Philips India to name a couple of companies among others. I have never treated my job as a mere job. Rather, it’s a passion. For me, it’s not only about doing a creative job in marketing but also seeing how it relates to business and sales and how I must bridge the gap between the two. I often reboot and reskill myself because I believe that to stay ahead in the game you constantly need to acquire and learn different skill sets.

I am, presently, the Vice President, Marketing, Havells India Limited who drives integrated marketing strategy, planning, and execution across channels for the entire Havells group in India.

Why PGPMAX?

I reached a point in my career where I wondered about my next move. I discussed with my mentors and they suggested an EMBA would give me a refresh of everything I had learnt in the last 15 years and would also enable me to reflect on the move forward in my career journey. I evaluated nine B-schools in India and abroad and discovered that no other school brings the rigour and passion that ISB brings through PGPMAX. On consultations with the professors and alumni it became clearer that the programme is not about a certificate, it is the School’s uncompromising academic excellence that was key to my professional development and growth.

Learning comes neither free nor cheap. You not only have to invest money but also your time or else you will not get what you want. ISB was more oriented towards learning and the rigour, and regularity it offered matched with my personality.

The PGPMAX Edge

My time management skills got consolidated on the campus. Learning from the peer group that is backed by a tremendous amount of experience and the exchange of thoughts and discussions with senior folks altered my thinking. You not only learn in the classroom, you learn equally from your peers, and those learning days are power-packed. I applied the learning on the job and shared them with my team. That enabled me to refresh my lessons and benefitted my team as well.

Professional Evolution Post PAGPMAX  

PGPMAX has helped change my orientation to a great extent. I now look beyond my functional expertise. The curriculum aligns you to appreciate every facet of business without limiting you to your functional area. It also helps you to get the measure of a challenge from different angles. You feel well-equipped to head a business in the future. I have begun to look at the balance sheet, the bill of materials, the profit contribution, etc. not only from a marketing standpoint but also from a business standpoint.

The amount of experiential sharing associated with the peer group, in the 15 years to 45 years’ experience range, who come from different spheres of life is an immense advantage. All that affects the way you think.

The PGPMAX Learning

Some key learnings for me were that you need to push yourself hard, and a lot depends on your mindset. Keep your eyes open for the larger aspects of the world beyond your functionality and have an eye on details in a precise and systematic manner. Finally, do not underestimate the need to unlearn and learn.

The PGPMAX ROI

For me, ROI is the return on insights and return on innovations and how do I actually build them. If I combine both insights and innovation, it’s a fabulous outcome. My ROI was the transformation in my personality from a professional, personal, and from leadership standpoint.

PGPMAX Influence on My Leadership Style

I believe in three pillars of leadership—trust, transparency, and technology. Trust your team and have your team trust you; be transparent with your team and vice versa, and, finally, use technology to reach out to everyone and be accessible to everyone. Learning is an integral part of leadership and that’s why I value the term LtoL which is Learning to Leadership.

Happiness is big for me and I have learnt that it’s important that your team members have a smile on their faces. You will never get an empty road to drive your car, and challenges are a given. ISB has taught me to work collaboratively as a leader—with those above you, below you and alongside you.

The ISB Alumni Virtues

The ISB alumni is a fabulously rich community. Fellow alumnus are just a call away and their eagerness to help is overwhelming. I may not have met everyone personally, but the fact that you are in this journey together is a tremendous value you derive as an alumnus. The activity and activeness of the alumni community is phenomenal. It’s quite unlike other institutes. I will be happy to help any of my fellow alumnus because of the support I get from them.

To Invest or Not to Invest During COVID times

In the post-pandemic times, your organisation will expect you to emerge more learned and more skilled. In my opinion, these are the best times to invest in PGPMAX as you can devote more time to study (as you do not have to travel to work) and you can stretch your boundaries to reach out to people.

On the Personal Side

I am a sports enthusiast and have played squash, badminton and cricket at the national level. Sports is a physical and mental energy booster for me and keeps me occupied, helps me reboot. I am taking to running full time and intend to do a full marathon soon.

Advice to the Current PGPMAX Cohort

Choosing this course is the best decision of your life. However, this decision will not help unless you devote 200% of your effort. Diligently attending the classes and going through every module is critical to getting the benefits. You will never get this opportunity of learning again.

Advice to the Aspirants

Do your strength analysis before you decide on the programme. PGPMAX is a transformational exercise and requires many sacrifices. It’s different from any other certification programme.

-Amit Tiwari, PGPMAX Class of 2016; Vice President, Marketing, Havells India Limited.