Earn trust to build nation's brand | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, October 03, 2010 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, October 03, 2010

Earn trust to build nation's brand

Say business thinkers at Leadership Summit

Ram Charan, an Indian-born business adviser and writer, speaks at the Leadership Summit 2010 at Radisson Hotel in Dhaka yesterday. From right to left, Arnfinn Groven, chief people officer of Grameenphone; Niaz Rahim, group director of Rahimafrooz; René Carayol, BBC broadcaster, are also seen. Photo: Amran Hossain

To step up in the global business race, Bangladesh needs to brand itself internationally as trustworthy, and deliver on that promise, suggested speakers at the Leadership Summit 2010 in Dhaka yesterday.
"Bangladesh needs to focus on four issues -- entrepreneurial development, business-management education, distinctive industries and foreign direct investment -- to execute the re-branding initiatives," said Ram Charan, renowned business adviser and author of What the CEO Wants You to Know.
"The strategic plan should be specific, actionable and clear so that the executors can easily understand and implement the plan," he said at the Radisson Water Garden Hotel.
Charan also stressed the need for top management to find the talent to effectively articulate and implement the corporate vision.
"Business leaders should
pinpoint the goals and disseminate those to the entire organisation to give the workforce a clear understanding of the organisation's plans," he told the summit,
organised by Bangladesh Brand Forum (BBF).
Dipak C Jain, a professor of marketing at the USA's Kellogg School of Management, said the companies have to build trust with their consumers to develop a successful brand.
"Asian businesses are mostly based on trust, so the businesses have to build trust and deliver accordingly. This is the basic of branding for any type of product," he said.
Allen J Pathmarajah, executive chairman of AJP Advisers PTE Ltd, stressed the need to accept change, be it in politics or the world economy.
"A leader moves people from the comfort of today to face the challenges of tomorrow."
"But the fundamental theory of sustainability includes creation of leaders, striving for excellence, continuous learning and respecting human values," he said.
Toffael Rashid, Singapore-based regional planning director of Saatchi and Saatchi, outlined the importance of raising standards, differentiation and strengthening of a brand image through branding “ethos”.
"To ensure a double-digit growth rather than a 6 to 7 percent growth, Bangladesh needs to gather knowledge from the global knowledge base in transforming its economic status," said the Bangladeshi-born Rashid.
Ahmed Raihan Shamsi, deputy CEO of Grameenphone Ltd, said Bangladesh has the potential to become one of the world's largest economies in this century, along with Brazil, Russia, India and China (BRIC).
"The country has been gradually achieving recognition as an emerging market. And Goldman Sachs, the renowned investment bank, has already picked the country as one of the next 11 emerging countries," he said.
In his opening remarks, Shariful Islam, founder of BBF, said the main objective of the programme is to help local corporate leaders develop their own brands effectively, and help them play a role in driving economic growth.
"The event is designed to address the most contemporary and relevant issues to a growing organisation," he said. “The format enables a business leader to gain the knowledge and expertise, and also share their experience.
"The role of the leaders become critical in that transformation, as they are the key player in taking the enterprise forward," he said. "And, that's why the theme of the second summit is Taking the Quantum Leap."
The daylong summit focused on issues including strategic planning, marketing, branding and leadership. A total of 320 leaders from different corporate houses participated.
Grameenphone was the event's platinum sponsor, and automotive battery-maker Rahimafrooz Ltd was the summit partner. Ali Reza Iftekhar, managing director of Eastern Bank, and Kazi Anis Ahmed, director of Gemcon Group, also spoke.
René Carayol, BBC broadcaster, and Farhet Anwar, chief adviser of BBF, were also present.

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