Innovation is Far Bigger Vision then R&D, Says Veteran Entrepreneur Harsh Mariwala Entrepreneurs should focus on developing an innovation driven workplace culture

By Sunil Pol & Vanita D'souza

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

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Harsh Mariwala, the Chairman of Marico Ltd is a super big fan of the entrepreneurship spirit and innovation-led businesses. No wonder we often see the veteran entrepreneur work closely with the new generation of businessmen, either through his ASCENT Foundation, Marico Innovation Foundation or even in his individual capacity.

For Mariwala, India's entrepreneurial journey has just begun and there is a long way to go. In a conversation with Entrepreneur India, he shares, "Entrepreneurs will pay a very important role in India's economic success. And not just that, they will add value to each and every stakeholder whether it is through creating jobs or giving back to the government through taxes, to their customer and employees."

Innovation v/s Research

Discussing the importance of innovation in an organization, Mariwala thinks any technological development or anything new is very crucial for the success of an organization but innovation is beyond that.

"It is a myth to say research and development is innovation as the latter goes beyond it. Innovation can cut across a process, filling line and product. It can also be a business model based innovation. Innovation is far bigger vision then R&D," he asserted.

Therefore, the veteran business tycoon suggests entrepreneurs and CEOs to develop an innovation-led culture in their workplace wherein the whole organization thinks innovatively and every person's vision is in line with the theme.

"There is need to develop a culture where risk-taking along with experimenting is encouraged and failures are not punished if they are intelligent ones. This is what it takes to run an innovation-driven organization," he pointed out.

Road to Success

But simply innovation can't lead you to the road to success and therefore, Dr R.A Mashelkar, Honorary Chairman of the Governing Council, Marico Innovation Foundation chalks out five principles that every entrepreneur must follow to leave a mark, which is as follows:

  1. Your aspirations are your possibilities and hence, keep your aspirations high.

  2. Like instant coffee, there is no instant success. And hence, you have to work hard

  3. Entrepreneurs keep knocking on to known doors of opportunities. Instead, learn to create your own door to an opportunity.

  4. Move from incremental mindset to disruptive one.

  5. Persistent pays, It is always too early to give up as FAIL simply means First Attempt in Learning.

  6. There is no limit to human imagination except for the one you put yourself.

To hear more from Harsh Mariwala and Dr R.A Mashelkar watch the video.

Sunil Pol & Vanita D'souza

Correspondent and Senior Correspondent, Entrepreneur India

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