Mumbai: Infosys chairman and chief mentor N R Narayana Murthy has emerged as India's most admired business leader, for the fifth consecutive year at the fifth annual B-school study conducted by the Bangalore-headquartered brand consulting, advertising and PR firm, Brand-comm.
The annual Brand-comm survey polled 545 students from 13 leading management institutes across the country including the three leading IIMs participated in the survey.
The other B-schools included XLRI (Jamshedpur), XLRI Jamshedpur, Welingkar Institute of Management Development and Research, Rajgiri Institute of Management, Bangalore's St. Joseph's college of Business administration, Xavier Institute of Management and Entrepreneurship (XIME), Alliance Business Academy, Christ college Institute of Management, Bharatidasan Institute of Management, Manipal's T A Pai Management Institute (TAPMI) and Mysore's SDM Institute for Management Development (SDMIMD).
B-school students admire Narayana Murthy, for being 'a socially responsible individual' and is looked up to as a leader who is honest and passionate about his work. The clarity and consistency in Mr. Murthy's personal branding and positioning seem to have been highly effective over the last five years.
Ratan Tata, chairman of Tata Group, occupies the second position in the list of most admired business leaders. Though Tata was in the second position last year as well, the margin between the first and the second positions had widened this year. The Ambanis, including the late Dhirubai Ambani occupy the third position and Azim Premji, chairman, Wipro Limited, Vijay Mallya, chiarman, UB Group and Kumaramangalam Birla, chairman, Aditya Birla Group are jointly placed in the fourth position.
If Tata is admired for being a visionary and for his commitment to the country's development, Premji is admired for his values towards his employees, his integrity, discipline and vision for Wipro. The flamboyant Mallya, who was low in rankings last year has climbed up to the fourth position and is admired for contrasting set of qualities as compared to the top three. The qualities admired in Mallya are his energy, dynamism, flair, foresight and capacity to innovate.
The changing face of Indian economy seems to have triggered the entry of a new set of business leaders into the top 10 this year. They include Kishore Biyani of Pantaloons MindTree's Subroto Bagchi, ICICI's K V Kamath, Air Deccan's Captain Gopinath and Infosys' Nandan Nilekani.
Says Ramanujam Sridhar, CEO, Brand-comm, "There aren't too many surveys that I know that have survived for five years. This study reiterates the value of personal branding. People like brands can make a difference to companies."