Monday, December 10, 2012

The Search for Excellence Continues

The transport excellence awards are almost here. And this time the jury met to debate award hopefuls from the West Zone. The jury meet was held in Mumbai on the 2nd and 3rd of November.
Leading professionals from various sectors were part of the esteemed jury. Including Mr. Muder Chiba (Managing Director Mumbai and Chief Marketing Office India Region, Millward Brown),  Mr.Uttam Ramani (Head Logistics, JSW Steel), Ms Savita Mathai (Sr.Vice President HR, DraftFCB Ulka), Mr.T.N.Seetharaman (Chief Operating Officer, South Asia, DAMCO) and  Mr. Srinivas Sattiraju (CEO, DelEx Cargo India Private Limited)
The nominees from the West Zone were a combination of large and medium sized Fleet Owners who have grown their business successfully in the last 5 years. The presentations were well thought out and insightful. It was interesting to note that these presentations demonstrated specific value additions to their own and customers businesses. One fleet owner demonstrated how GPS and technology has helped improve their operating margin, another discussed how data collected from accidents and Root Cause Analysis (RCA) helped them bring down the rate of accidents to provide better value for their customer. And some even explained how they managed driver shortage over the years, by making drivers the own assets, which served them well over time.

Two candidates participated in The Lady Transport Personality Award, Their ideas focused on the softer side of business. Including HR, IT and supporting their husbands perform “Smarter” and “Better”. The jury was pleased to see their eager participation in this male dominated industry.
The Jury recommended that both the large and small fleet owner categories be segregated, as exciting innovations were being discussed for both respective categories.
Nominees from prestigious colleges in India and abroad took part in the Youth Transport sector.  They presented exciting ideas about the future for their business, showing a strong desire to expand their business into 3PL/Warehousing.
The jury heard some interesting stories and some inspirational at the meet. One nominee started life as a peon in a transport company only to go on to own more than 70 vehicles. And has been in a partnership which has lasted 30 long years and is still going strong, something quite unheard of these days. On the other hand, we had one of the Largest Fleet Owners in the industry presenting a plan to expand his fleet by 100 % in the next 3 years. Confidently adopting the “will buy more trucks and will do more business” philosophy.
The Mumbai jury meet saw many exciting and interesting ideas. Making it the third successful event leading up to the much awaited Mahindra Navistar Transport Excellency Awards.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

East Zone hosts the Jury Meet for the Mahindra Navistar Transport Excellence Awards ‘12

With the second edition of the Transport Excellence Awards just around the corner, the final jury meet for the awards was held. And this time it was the East Zone’s turn. Geographically being one of the most challenging terrains, especially in the north-east, the judges were excited to see what solutions the potential winners would present. And Dr. Debjit Roy, Assistant Professor, Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, Dr. Deepankar SInha, Associate Professor, Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, Kolkata, Ms. Devika Devaiah, Erehwon Consultants, Bangalore and Mr. Jagadeesh Kunchey, Head – Logistics, ITC Limited, Kolkata were more than pleased with the results.
The nominees, both large and mid-sized fleet owners, were individuals who had grown their business substantially over the past 3-4 years. Each presented their work on unique requirements like the ODC movement. And while some presentations gave solutions for unsatisfactory terrains, others tackled unsatisfied customers. In fact, one fleet owner went as far as sending empty trucks one-way if his customer required them at the other end.
A lot of innovative approaches to build more profitable businesses were also demonstrated. One fleet owner presented how GPS and technology improved his service levels and operating margins. There were some who explained how they managed drivers differently simply by making them assets owners, sharing profits with them, etc.
It was amazing to see how much these individuals gave towards the betterment of the transport industry. Especially the young minds who were nominated for the ‘Youth Transporter’ award, who showed great commitment to the transport business. And in many cases took full responsibility for a segment of their business, growing it rapidly.
All in all, a great end to a successful day.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Another bead in the necklace of the transport industry.

The second meeting of the Transport big-wigs was held in Chennai.  11 out of 16 customers were present and two of them took part via teleconference. Mr. Saurab Ghosh (Sr. VP and Head Transport & Handling, Arshiya International), Prof. Sekar (Professor, Indian Maritime University), Ms. Nandini Dias(COO, Lodestar UM),  Mr. Ramesh Kumar(Journalist & Author, CV Industry) were all part of our esteemed jury.
The nominees in South India showed their enthusiasm by presenting detailed and insightful AV’s to the jury. Four candidates presented ideas for the Lady Transport Personality awards. Funnily, they highlighted the need for soft skills to improve the present troubles of the truck drivers.
The CEO and Director of GATI, Ms. Chitra Shinde, a resident of New Zealand, shed some light on the improvement of the transport industry by getting a deeper understanding of the Indian audience and adjusting to cultural factors. Her experience and knowledge was an asset to the meeting. The idea of making drivers, partners in the Fleet Owners’ business seemed to be the strongest recommendation of the jury members as a way forward on the vexatious issue of the driver-owner conflict.

They etched out plans to resolve the discrepancies between the younger s and older generations of truckers. The jury also recommended a “Best Thinker’s Award for the best idea for the Transport Industry”. This will help MNAL gain insights and take up projects in the future without hesitation. The Jury also pointed out that nominees ought to use current affairs to personify previous case studies and bring them to life. This will help nominees focus on recent achievements and plan better for the future. The jury opened their arms to suggestions and feedback from transporters, drivers, YTPs, financers and LTPs to broaden their outlook.
The idea of Dhabas also acting as service centres for drivers received impetus from the panel. The jury discussed fool-proof plans to understand the business better by doing a SWOT analysis of the situation. They recommended that the nominee evaluation be more rigorous and an increase in the entry barrier would yield better output.

Various topics were discussed and many ideas were deliberated upon, making the Chennai Jury meet yet another successful event leading to the Mahindra Navistar Transport Excellency Awards.

Friday, October 26, 2012

When Transport Titans Meet

With the Mahindra Transport Excellence Awards just around the corner, the heavy-weights of the industry came together to discuss the future of the transport industry in Delhi on October 12th and 13th 2012.

This meeting highlighted several issues and milestones of the transport industry. Industry big wigs like Mr. Tej Nirmal Singh (Head Logistics, Ericsson, India), Mr. Ranganathan (CEO, DCM, Retail), Mr. Pradeep Saxena (ED, TNS Automotive), Mr. Siddharth Patankar (Editor, NDTV Profit) and Ms. Shobha Subramanian (MD, Market Vistas, Ex-ED, TNS India) were part of the esteemed jury.

They discussed the growing influence of the younger generation in crucial decision making roles; the increasing levels of professionalism in the industry and the positive impact of competition in helping the transport industry grow.

This year the jury saw an even greater number of passionate candidates taking part. They believed that candidates recognized the Mahindra Transport Excellence Awards as the ideal platform to showcase their best practices to likeminded and reputed people in the industry. These candidates displayed an increased level of enthusiasm to highlight the nuances of their individual cases showing their respect for the entire judging process.

Daily troubles and serious issues faced by truck drivers were also addressed in the meeting. A plan was etched out to solve these problems with the help of the OEM.

This was the first successful meet of the transport aficionados who got to see a glimpse of the talent that would take center stage at the forth-coming Mahindra Transport Excellence Awards.