Building an Innovative and Engaging Culture for Future

‘Make in India’ initiated by our Honorable Prime Minister is a restart for India which similar to the ‘Khadi – Swadeshi Movement’ by the Father of the Nation. MK Gandhi had re-invented Khadi to kindle indigenous manufacturing using appropriate technology. The present PM is also re-inventing indigenous innovations fine tuned to international technology and blended with ‘lean & frog manufacture’ amongst SME, the backbone of the nation for inclusive growth. The change in environment involved invitation to overseas investors for Capital & Technology.

The thrust is to build an innovative culture and engaging culture.

‘INNOVATE OR PERISH’ has become writing on the wall. We Indians have failed to innovate. The best or the last innovation was only ‘Ahimsa’ by the father of our nation M K Gandhi, which we did a 100% export like we did with Buddhism. We have failed to innovate by building a ‘Berlin Wall’ between Theory and Practice, and Knowledge and Skills. We are in utter confusion from whence we inherited an educational and economic situation that has made us act as foreigners in our own country. We question our own people without any personal involvement or contribution to anything indigenous. Thanks to information bombardments, we worry about happening around the world and at the same time not aware of the threats waiting at our own door steps or opportunities or resources inside India.

It is already late for us to build an innovation culture which has to be an engaging culture through inclusive growth. ‘Better Late than Never’ is the proverb. At least, we can do a restart by reviving our innovation culture and ‘Make in India’ as an engaging culture to energize our ‘Sleeping Elephant- India’ to wake-up and do a jogging - if not running.

Culture of Innovation: We have talked about evolution of ‘Quality’ - A practical & comprehensive approach which helped the critical principles & practice of Quality to percolate into a majority of firms /institutions world-wide. Most importantly Quality became a disciplined, deliberate & determined-activity with a great degree of predictability - as per Dr. Jay Rao of Babson College in Boston of USA. “Deliberate” is about being purposeful & systematic. “Deliberate” is a purposeful practice. Purposeful practice is an intentional one with a specific outcome in mind. Purposeful practice has intermediate goals, focused  coaching, structured support systems and measured feedback, “systematic” is about being organized, comprehensive, rigorous and thorough’.

Innovation is more predictable, if it can fine tune the technology it uses to market – Internal & external

Engaging Culture: ‘Make in India’ is to energize manufacturing. Manufacturing needs innovative practices and products. Manufacturing needs more competitive knowledge and skills to impart spirits to bring an engaging culture to young and old, employers and employees. A real inclusive growth will empower men & women to get tooled up to meet varying demands of agriculture & industries and will definitely bring home an engaging culture. What we need is the speed with a human touch to rapidly adopt the emerging technologies, for which there is a huge need for attitudinal change.

Attitudinal change happens only through proper gurus, and not by simply transferring the Technology and forgetting our own strengths or constraints. However, thanks to the Internet of utilizing which our younger generations have become more informative. How to guide them to assimilate and transform huge information into Knowledge and Skills is the part to be played by Gurus, the Business, Industry & the Rulers.

Our gurus need more continuous up gradations in Theory and Practice: then only our students will give more respect to gurus and get embedded with both Theory and Practice and acquire talent.

Then is ‘Inclusive growth’ which is a concept that advances equitable opportunities for economic participants during economic growth with benefits incurred by every section of society’.

Inclusive growth basically means ensuring that everyone in a society or country is included in growth, regardless of their economic class, gender, sex, disability and religion. Inclusive growth approach takes on long term perspective and the focus is on productive employment rather than merely direct income redistribution as a means of increasing income for excluded groups. Thus inclusive growth approach takes a long term perspective of development.

According to World Bank, the growth is said to be inclusive when the growth is sustainable in long run and it should be broad, based across the sector and inclusive of large part of countries’ labour force. Inclusiveness should understand in this sense and focusing on equality of opportunity in terms access to markets, resources and unbiased regulatory environment for businesses and individuals.

Sustainable economic growth requires inclusive growth. Maintaining this is sometimes difficult because economic growth may give rise to negative externalities. Nonetheless, an emphasis on inclusiveness — especially on equality of opportunity in terms of access to markets, resources, and an unbiased regulatory environment—is an essential ingredient of successful growth. The inclusive growth approach takes a longer-term perspective, as the focus is on productive employment as a means of increasing the incomes of poor and excluded groups and raising their standards of living.

We have to find how to employ people from Agriculture continuously by a mutual arrangement between Small/ Medium Industries & Agricultural Sectors and skill development focus with a two pronged approach to solve to some extent to improve the Engaging Culture.

In a time – bound manner, we have to narrow the

  • Gap between Theory & Practice
  • Gap between Design & Manufacturability
  • Gap between Industry & Agriculture
  • Gap between Employers & Employees  &
  • The gap between Planning & Execution

Easily said, but we have to still cross so many hurdles like making our teachers to learn practice and to upgrade the knowledge and skills and thin teaching of practicing people alternatively. Secured jobs have become the thing of the past. Securing one through continuous learning has become the need of the day.

Our Indian educational sector awaits a huge challenge from Internet or Search Engines – the great challenge to present teachers who are not upgrading themselves in both knowledge and practice. My suggestion is allowing people to teach as well as work like learning engineering in the sandwich pattern.

We have to appreciate the present Union HRD Ministry for not allowing the sick self-financing type Engineering Institutions to sell part of their training cells outside. Now the direction is to establish Skill Development Centres in-house only to add extra skills during academic career itself not only to the students, but also to the outer world.

By bringing Inclusive Growth to India, we can bring Engaging Culture here...

The Future: Hon. Peter F. Drucker has told in his popular book titled as ‘The Age of Discontinuity’- the great need is the man who can develop and teach the application to end results of knowledge and information drawn from diverse disciplines.

We need further the man who can, in his own work, bring together knowledge from a great many disciplines and integrate  them into effective application outside the university .He is today not officially recognized-but he is the real ‘star’ in today’s large university’.

The time has come for India to identify these ‘stars’ in India who can become not only a dual teacher (theory & practice) ,but also a mentor for developing Innovative Spirits in our young minds and also be the catalyst for bringing Innovative Products .Processes & Equipments to take India to the next higher level.

The welcome change can occur by evolving /re-inventing ultra modern gurukulums by synergizing our traditional gurukulums with the modern Internet of Things. Otherwise India will only grow physically and will be a big market for consumption for the International Businesses and not contributors to Overall Development -in spite of having the largest younger population. The young brains will get drained away to outer world and may remit more US $ while India will become the largest consumer market only.

The ultimate path-way is only to Build an Innovative and Engaging Culture for Future through  Reliable Design, Rapid Development & Responsive Direction.

About the Author

Er. Ramalingam KS, is a DFM Consultant who mentors engineers on TDFM for various institutions such as IISC-Bangalore, REC and professional bodies like COINDIA, CES, IIPE & I E India.

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