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Ratan Tata: Leading the Tata Group into the 21st Century - Research Paper Example

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The author of this essay critically discusses the leadership of Ratan Tata and evaluate his successes and failings by setting them in the right context. The author also attempts to identify areas where the Tata group lags behind and propose measures to improve those  …
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Ratan Tata: Leading the Tata Group into the 21st Century
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Download file to see previous pages The year 1993 when Ratan Tata took over the reigns of one of India’s largest conglomerates is a crucial time for the country as a whole. It was two years before, in 1991, that the Congress government, under the leadership of Narasimha Rao, made a radical policy move that would change the complexion and dynamics of the Indian economy. Prior to 1991, the Indian economy was highly protectionist, with a regulatory framework that was indifferent to business interests. In the competition between the public sector and the private sector, the former always held an edge. And some of the private sector enterprises too reflected the lethargy and incompetence of the public sector. Even amid the major business houses, the Tata group had garnered notoriety for representing this form of work culture and attitude. So Ratan Tata was met with two major challenges: the first is to adopt the group to the changing economic environment and secondly to change the work culture of his own organization (Case 10, Center for Management Research, 2008). And after seventeen years of his role at the top, there is measurable progress in both these areas. And as a result of that, despite how successful his leadership would be in the coming years, his legacy as a stalwart leader is already assured.
In his early days as Chairman, Ratan Tata had to confront issues of power politics within the organization. For example, many of the individual companies and subsidiaries functioned as independent entities, without reflecting the core values and principles of its founders. This lack of cohesion manifested in the form of CEOs clinging on to their position way beyond reasonable tenure, thereby thwarting opportunities for the next generation of managers. Ratan Tata’s initiative to turn around this situation was met with stiff opposition from below, but he stood by his principles and managed to shake up the top management of the group in a matter of few years.   ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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