Fly, Maruti, Fly

Its important to know what you don’t know … learning becomes so much the easier….

So said Mr. R C Bhargava, Chairman, Maruti Suzuki during the launch of his book ‘The Maruti Story‘ penned in collaboration with Ms. Seetha, author of The Backroom Brigade: How a Few Intrepid Entrepreneurs Brought the World to India.

In a freewheeling chat at Reliance Digitial Time Out on Saturday, Mr. Bhargava recalled the growth of the company from a mere blip on the industry screen to the automotive giant that it has evolved to become, succeeding against odds, babudom and detractors, revolutionizing the automotive sector in India and sitting on a cash pile of around Rs. 6000 crores.  Apparently, the company name was coined by an intrepid advtg agency ( he refused to name them ) who were given the brief of a product that would ‘fly’ / ‘float’.  Maruti is a nickname for Lord Hanuman and during the first visit to the proposed factory, monkeys of all shapes and sizes were the only denizens of the forlorn place.

He further shed light on the importance of developing a nurturing, caring relationship with workers; recalled how babus were terrified in doing something against a project that was the pet of Mrs. Gandhi;  mirthlessly revealed how paperwork / process and procedures were more important that work achieved in government circles and the similarities between marriages and business joint ventures ( both need openness, trust & transparency!).

Pride was evident when he shared the fact of the company rolling out its millionth car recently and how they were working to up the stakes to 1.5 million.

Here’s are some pics from the event:

Here’s an interesting interview with him published in LiveMint and some details about the book.