Future Leaders Of The Event Industry Discuss 'Legacy: Past and Future' at WOW Awards 2018

Business Events | July 12, 2018 | News

WOW Awards and Convention Asia

The event industry is at its peak today and the industry is progressing at a rapid pace. While the stalwarts have all set a legacy for the future generations, it is now time to pass the baton on, to bring in the future leaders and help them take the journey ahead. At WOW Awards and Convention Asia 2018, top future leaders from key agencies in the countries put their heads together in an intensive discussion on 'Our Foundation: The Good and Bad'. 

In a format which saw the discussion divided into different sub-topics: Our Foundation: The Good and Bad, The Legacy We Must Live Up To?, and The Legacy We Need To Create?, the panel was presided over by three moderators, who have made their mark in the industry. 

Sameer Tobaccowala, CEO, Shobiz opened the first session with an introduction to the true sense of the term 'legacy'. A living example of someone who turned from a future leader to a guiding light for the present generation, Sameer invited Prapti Malhotra - Business Head (Special Projects); Wizcraft; Subhashini Balasubramanian - Director (Projects), 70EMG; Dhanraj Madnani - Maximus MICE and Media Solutions on stage for the first session.

Our Foundation: The Good and Bad

Prapti Malhotra - Business Head (Special Projects), Wizcraft

"I feel that in our country, the event space is still developing rapidly. Luckily for us, we had the legacy and the good fortune of working with a lot of people. Within the industry, there are cults that are formed. Yes, there are such spaces that agencies tend to develop which are more focused on the passions or the likes and dislikes of their owners. But now, with the global influence in India and the exposure that the audience, brands, managers clients even our own people are getting of what is happening globally is so vast that there is no way to go but to change. So the legacy can remain the legacy. But it's now time to change the structure and ring in a new set of norms, a new way."

Subhashini Balasubramanian - Director (Projects), 70EMG 

"To be honest, the previous leaders have still left their legacy behind. The company is defined by the individuals, the founders. That definitely puts an additional pressure on the future leaders. But with the changing times, the sensibilities are changing. Modern clients are opening up in understanding that the company isn’t only that individual. but is a lot more and beyond that name. What has happened for me is that we have been given that power, we have been empowered to be a better individual and to represent the company in the best way that we know how and in the best way that they would like to be represented as well. While initially it’s been a challenge convincing the client, I don’t think that’s as difficult as it used to be perhaps 7-8 years ago."

Dhanraj Madnani -  Maximus MICE and Media Solutions

"The most essential part of a legacy that some of our cult leaders have realized over time is that is the risk that they have to take to give way to the young leaders to come forward to put their thoughts forward and that’s one thing which has been a huge contribution towards the young leaders and this is the good part. The not so good part about it is that we have to challenge some of the wireframes that have been created by these cult leaders to make our place is market and that’s what I think make younger leaders future leaders."

The Legacy We Must Live Up To 

The second session was led by Brian Tellis, Chairman, Fountainhead MKTG. The man needs no introduction and the session he presided discussed the topic: The Legacy We Must Live Up To. The session speakers were Apaar Bhandari - Vice President (Technology), Fountainhead MKTG; Dipika Shah - Lead (Special Projects), Phase 1;  Puja Myne - GM (Key Accounts), CSDirekt

Puja Myne - GM (Key Accounts), CSDirekt

"Event management has become a profession. Many people want to get into the event space today, But I think we should have more knowledge sharing platforms we should make it a subject there should be advanced courses in the field. Having worked with a lot of youngsters I have noticed that many of them get into the field just because of the glamour aspect of it they don't have the passion for it. I think that we really need to concentrate on how we built up the platform to educate them about the space so that they know what they are getting into."

Apaar Bhandari - Vice President (Technology), Fountainhead MKTG 

"Clients today want innovation. They want technology. Even though I live technology everyday, I believe even more than technology stems from an idea. First, it needs to be formalised in a concrete idea, in something that makes more sense. Then, the vehicle is technology. Once that is finalised, everything including the flow is going to be good. Then you won't be typecast. You need to see what the brand wants,  what is the idea that you want to put what will be the objective."

Dipika Shah - Lead (Special Projects), Phase 1

"Today every event is a brand. The event industry is driven by passion, without passion it is impossible to create something which audiences are also passionate about. Event space today is all about what drives you crazy and that is what we need to develop in our younger generation. And that is why a knowledge sharing platform is necessary."

The Legacy We Need To Create?  

Oum Pradutt, MD, Phase 1 led the final session on The Legacy We Need To Create? with speakers: Saurabh Khurana - VP & Business Head, Laqshya Live; Varun Khare - GM, Oranjuice Entertainment; Jankana Kaul - Impact Communications.

Saurabh Khurana - VP & Business Head, Laqshya Live

"Today the stalwarts are dealing with a completely different generation of people. We were part of the generation when we worked with these stalwarts. But the future leaders today are dealing with a completely different generation. I'm not going to wait for nearly a decade to grow in the industry. They need instant gratification. They believe in informal education. The younger generation is not only learning on the job but they are also learning it through formal education and training. As future leaders, we should focus on people who have achieved that kind of education, who have gone through the course. The upcoming industry members need to know and understand the industry they are getting in to."

Varun Khare - GM, Oranjuice Entertainment

"We have started getting more educated people into the industry and that's something that we should keep working on. We need to be a place where are confident of ourselves. Also, within the industry infrastructure makes a difference and the work environment needs to be great. What we are also blessed with is the vibes that our directors have allowed us to work with. It has helped us thrive in the creativity that comes out from the office. Something that we really work on is bringing out the individual self. Not stereotyping them or boxing them."

Jankana Kaul - Impact Communications 

"We have missed on a very critical point here and that is compliance.  I'm talking here about the basics of the industry. I am talking about equal wages, I am talking about work environment, environment for women I am talking about the compliances and we as the new generation, I think, it is imperative for us to kind of take the first step. Younger generation is passionate they are compassionate, so we will do it what it takes."

In a format which saw the discussion divided into different sub-topics: Our Foundation: The Good and Bad, The Legacy We Must Live Up To?, and The Legacy We Need To Create?.

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