Mr. B. S. Nagesh, a Master in Management Studies from Benares Hindu University, joined the K. Raheja Group in 1991 to set up their retail business. Since then he has infused the latest retail techniques into the business, blending the best of national and international talent within the company. With a Passion for retail and ability to take risk and a rib for associates are some of his strengths.
Passion for Retail, a vision to empower its work force and an urge for exemplary customer service, is all embracive of Mr.Nagesh. Though there remains a lot more to be kenned.
What attracted you towards RETAIL?
‘Builder Extraordinaire’ as they call you, with almost 37 years of indispensable contribution in the industry, how has your journey been.
Retail is the only business that allows you to be in touch with the consumers till the last. Second, one has to be a gutsier marketer to work with retail because of its dynamic nature. I have even worked at a retail shop as a seller during my research project, it actually helped me understand what a consumer demands in a particular product. There onwards in every association of mine, the core word has always been RETAIL.
Shoppers Stop transformed the retail realm. What challenges did you come across?
Well there were many challenges
First biggest challenge was that nobody believed in it.
Second was that I was a man dressed in tie and suit, against the then running air in retail sector. Right from the concept to every retail attempt, there were several objections and challenges. Though that only envisioned me more to strive harder for my goals and boosted my confidence.
With the coming of online shopping, retail has surely faced some changes, for good or for bad is a separate question altogether. But, what are your views on it and how is the Shoppers Stop living with it, is something we are eager to know.
As far as digital or e commerce space is concern, it is fantastic to have been able to deliver consumer requirements 24*7.Also looking at it from consumer’s point view, I and you would never have got this kind of convenience without online retail,
And the fact that our life revolves around technology, consumers have developed their aspirations with advancement in technology. They ask for more and get more, and it is hugely getting facilitated by online retail business. So I will say E-Retail is here to stay.
Where do you see retail and SS specifically after five years?
From a retail point of view I definitely see all the big stores becoming omni channel retail outlets and analytics playing a crucial role in the retail realm.
The variety, the Choice in the consumer’s hands will be tremendous. The technology algorithm and analytics is to play a crucial role in the life of the retailers. I accept online players reaching many towns and city on their own and offline players expanding with the help of online retail, thus expanding modern retail with increase in choices and convenience!
Great time for consumers, good time for retailers and tough time for not so good retailers!
TRRAIN supports an altogether new and innovative perspective to Retail. What is the story behind this foundation?
Our associates are like soldiers. The millions of retail employees working with you actually make you a hero. But there is no recognition for them at all. They can’t even take good care of themselves.
My philosophy which I say as 25 years of learning, 25 years of earning and 25 years of returning, made me take a call to step out of profit business and start up a new journey and work for retailers and associates.
What do you seek to achieve for TRRAIN?
I seek to do good for the retail fraternity. If retailers and associates achieve something for them, I will be more than happy. There are more than 35 million people working in retail, what TRRAIN seeks to be is a thought leader and catalyst with support from industry. We have many countries shaking hands, last year 4 million employees celebrated retail associates day, then we have several disability and skill development program.
When I turn 75 I want to look back at my journey and its last leg, be satisfied and have fun after that!
As a personality, so profound as you are, we would love to know the ‘non entrepreneur’ side of yours. So here are a quick set of questions:
What things fascinate you the most when you travel?
I love observing and understanding different people.
I like adventurous tours whereas my wife loves ancient explorations.
What are your hobbies?
During my young days I used to master the game of billiards. But since then it has always been RETAIL and its hands that has drawn my interest.
Best and the worst thing about your job?
Best thing is its absolutely lively and kicking. Understanding different moods and choices of consumers is a challenge that you love to conquer.
I never thought of any worst thing to my job,I have had a lot of failures which are disheartening at times but they ignite you to work harder and achieve your goals.
What is a Sunday to you?
For me a Sunday is definitely lot around day. We go for 15km treks in the morning, have baithaks of music with people. I like cooking food for my daughter and my wife and enjoy people’s company.
I don’t like to go out and shop on weekends.
Be your own fortune teller! Tell us how you’d be five years down the line.
5 years down the line I don’t wish to work in profit areas or associations. I would be still mentoring youngsters. TRRAIN will be a fairly large organisation with aligning more countries at global level enduring development and growth for retail employees and impacting a 100 thousand people globally
5 years down the line I will be
RICHER BY KNOWLEDGE and OLDER BY AGE!
Lastly, a message from you to all the rising entrepreneurs.
“Believe in yourself and you can’t do it alone” Lastly -Have a focus