The Elephant Catchers

In 2006, my book The High Performance Entrepreneur broke new ground as a must read for would-be entrepreneurs. It became immensely popular among an entire generation of young Indians who dreamt beyond getting a job to building businesses and creating jobs for others. The book was built on my failed experience of starting a company when I was 28 and then that of successfully co-founding Mindtree when I was 42. Through these two experiences and my observation of many great entrepreneurs, I posited that start-ups must be designed for high-performance and it is possible to do so.

It has now been seven long years since The High Performance Entrepreneur appeared. In these intervening years, as a professional and an entrepreneur, a lot has changed in my life. After the arrival of the book, sometime in 2007, Mindtree’s Initial Public Listing (IPO) happened. Listing a company at the stock exchange is the ultimate dream of every start-up. But taking a company public brings along the obligation of growth. Therefore and quite naturally, after 2007, our struggle, and along the way, the transformative experiences had a lot to do with the challenge of building growth and scale.

For many leaders, the ability to scale brings significant challenge. In some ways, starting something is easier than scaling it. That is why people and their businesses hit the proverbial glass ceiling after a successful start. Based on my own experience and that of others, I wanted to write a book that addressed this theme. The Elephant Catchers is that book. It synthesizes my learning of the last few years as a collection of hard-earned lessons on a spectrum of issues around the core idea of scaling it up.

Elephant CatchersThe book is arranged in six Parts. In Part I, I present the need to build comfort with the idea of scale. Part II is about scaling your business by getting large deals, about the need to stay away from certain customer engagements and business models that could prevent growth and the subject of mergers and acquisitions that invariably engages everyone at some time or the other. In Part III, the conversation shifts to scaling your intellect; after all, the enterprise is an intellect game. The capacity to get to the next level often depends on a leader’s ability to augment the organizational intellect by tapping into external expertise. Not everyone knows how to do it. Part IV deals with the idea of scaling reputation. Reputation is a form of capital and growing it right, beyond just good public relations (PR), helps an organization get to the next level. In part V, we focus on scaling your people because the modern enterprise is all about people. Part VI deals with the aspect of scaling adversity. Here we talk about the need to focus on doing ordinary things extraordinarily well when extraordinary events overtake the enterprise.

The core idea of scale, its associated attributes and challenges are not unique to for-profit businesses. These are equally applicable to any institution, and I can even say, individual. After all, our lives are enterprises and each one of us is the CEO of Me Inc. That is why some very promising individuals fall short of the summit; a few scale. In this book, I hope that you will be able to see your organization, whether it is a business or a not-for-profit and even see your own self.

The Elephant Catchers is due to make its debut on August 24th 2013, published by Hachette India. I would love to hear your comments after you had a chance to read it.

Watch an exclusive interview wherein Subroto Bagchi discusses the core theme of his new book – ‘The Elephant catchers’.

Comments
Gobi C Says
Wednesday July 24th 2013

I have no words just waiting for your book. I am in such a situation to scale. Its sure going to help me as other 3 of your books

Wednesday July 24th 2013

Hello Mr. Bagchi,

Greetings !!!

Looking forward for the book and I am confident that this one shall also be a great source of inspiration like the other three, for all the young entrepreneurs like me who come from a very mediocre background yet to dream to reach great heights.
Wish you all the success !!!

Wednesday July 24th 2013

You are one of the rare Indian business authors. Your any new book I will buy without hesitation because of the quality content. The small and medium scale Indian companies will be thankful to you for this book. Just by reading this book and applying your thoughts, I think we will have few large successful companies in near future!

Souvick Dutta Says
Wednesday August 14th 2013

Eagerly waiting for this book. Prebooked it.

Friday August 16th 2013

Respected Sir,

I have read all books authored by you earlier. Now, I am eagerly waiting for your forthcoming book “The Elephant Catchers”. Today I pre-booked it.We wish to invite you to interact with our members on Corporate Ashram,a knowledge sharing platform founded by our client Ms.Lipsa Mohanty. http://www.corporate-a-sramah.com/

Warm Regards,
Sanjib K. Mohanty
Advocate,Supreme Court of India

Nitai Dhal Says
Thursday August 22nd 2013

Dear Sir,

Eagerly awaiting for the launching of the New Book. Hope, like the previous best sellers this one will exceed our imaginations and expectations too.

Karthikeyan Says
Thursday August 22nd 2013

“Go, Kiss the world” is the first book I read. It was truly inspiring. I know the latest one is also going to be a masterpiece. Looking forward to read. I feel great to work under a Thought Leader like you!

ramakrishna Says
Thursday August 29th 2013

Sir,

I have bought the earlier publication the professional and go kiss the world, this helped me a lot by putting me back in the right track.

Today I bought the elephant catchers and completed 2 chapters.

These publications are an inspiring and now my regular guide during my need of the hour. I look forward to completely read the elephant catchers.

Thanks a lot for these publications.

Regards
ramakrishna

Friday August 30th 2013

We’re a bunch of volunteers and starting a brand new scheme in our community. Your website provided us with valuable information to paintings on. You’ve performed an impressive task and our entire community might be thankful to you.

Animesh Dutta Says
Saturday August 31st 2013

This book would be my first book from Mr. Subroto Bagchi.I hope I will be able to learn a lot of things from Mr. Bagchi.

Sreeram Kannan Says
Monday September 2nd 2013

I’ve read this book and presented one copy to our Vice President. Even asked to hand it over to our CEO if he feels ( I guess he definitely will do so ) the book is good and readable by our company leader.

Its a fascinating book and a must read one by every one. Thank you !

Wednesday September 4th 2013

Hi
Book is so inspiring, eye opener,must read for all those looking to scale business, move to next orbit & raise the bar….

Warm Regards
Chari

Karthik Annapragada Says
Monday September 9th 2013

Hello Mr. Bagchi,

I have ready every book of yours and to me its been an inspiration everytime. Earlier books have helped my professional life and am sure your new book would do the same to my new avatar as an Entrepreneur!

Vinod S Says
Tuesday September 17th 2013

Hello Subroto,

I bought the eBook from Amazon.in and read through. Just realised how convenient eBooks are. With the Kindle subscription, I could read it on every device – my phone, laptop or tablet! It was always accessible.

The book is an amazing read. I had been a peripheral spectator to many of the events at Mindtree. Obviously I had a completely different sense of what was going on – many of us were probably Ninjas :)
Its quite nice to read a book where one has a unique sense of participation with the narrative.

I had one running theme in my mind as I read through your book. You have given an organisation’s perspective on scaling and imperatives therein. I was thinking of an individual’s perspective as she undertake’s this journey of building and expanding. What happens to those whose skills fall short with passing time? Even a rabbit catcher cannot be a rabbit catcher for 30 years. Age will catch up.

Prateek N. Kumar Says
Friday September 20th 2013

I am a first generation entrepreneur ,and my company is called “NeoNiche Integrated Solutions Pvt. Ltd”, I have been a regular reader to your books and would say that you have been a source of inspiration to me as to numerous others.

NeoNiche was started with the single dream of bridging the gap between the marketers and the understanding of his/her hired agency to deliver the brand promise to the end customer in right manner. While I embarked on this journey with my team we realized this was only possible if we truly cared about people who mattered to us ,Our team, Their families, our customers, society that we live in and the law of the land.

NeoNiche journey started with a dream ,we had no money, no backing coming from middle class family in Ranchi with only salaried personnel and certainly no major contacts .

However, the journey of past years and your inspirational books have taught me few things as entrepreneur which I want to share with my fellow entrepreneurs and anyone thinking of bootstrapping.

1.It’s not WHO you know but WHAT you know and WHERE and HOW you can make a difference – The first Client who empaneled us as vendor are yet to do business with us while there are few Angel Clients who trusted us and brought us more clients by WOM.
2.Think BIG, Set hairy, audacious, BIG goals but be humble
3.A motivated team is better than 10 so called experienced experts – Motivate your team to go beyond what they are capable of. and give them the credit when they deliver
4.Be visible and be different –A paradox but both are also true vice versa …..our recognition at CMO Asia Awards and free media coverage helped us
5.Follow the law of the land and pay your taxes on time – Helps to maintain the transparency
6.Do not hire a family member at least not when you are starting off
7.Give Value for Money service and be shameful in asking Clients for referrals
8.Believe in yourself its only then that the world will start believing you
9.Be Frugal- Its not about the flashy car but about that extra penny saved to get more resources
10.Follow the rules that exist for everyone in the team and enjoy your free time.

Thank You Mr. Bagchi

Friday September 27th 2013

Warm greetings Mr.Bagchi ,
It gives immense pleasure to make a mention about your enriched thoughts so nicely & simply represented in your Books .
The value & focus given by you on growth of human capital makes you so special.
Yesterday my daughter (presently working in TCS,Bhubaneswar fond of reading & writing her blogs @ sarba roy got me the book “The Professional”.Very intersting part was when she asked the librarian in TCS to give her a good book , The librarian handed over your book “The Professional” telling that this book is among few other listed books,which TCS – CEO -Mr.N.Chandrasekharan has gone through. I tell you ( with close to 2& half decades of experience in Pharmaceutical marketing)I thoroughly enjoyed going through ” The Professional ” . Today I was delighted to watch your exclusive interview on your latest book”the elephant cathchers”,where in you have used the term “Scaling” to signify progress of Individual/Organization.You & your organization “Mind tree” have scaled high with your value system & nurturing the human capital in “Mind tree “. A lot of learning is the need for every one/Organization ,who do not just survive but wants to scale higher/progress .This will certainly enable our motherland “India” become exemplary nation for others to follow.

Thursday January 2nd 2014

Greetings Mr. Bagchi,
I just finished reading your book “The Elephant Catchers” & indeed it has hit us at the right time. We are part of the largest machine tool group in India, the AceMicromatic Group (Rs. 1100 Crores sales in 2012) which is a confederation of 5 like-minded 1st generation entrepreneurs. Our ethical & values based working philosophy matches 100% with your thoughts. In fact we share wisdom of a common friend Mr. R. Srinivasan who is a Board member at Ace Designers Ltd. Blr. for many years.
Mr. Srinivasan has helped craft our new Vision in Aug. 2012 for the Group, i.e To be amongst the 10 largest in the world with annual sales of USD 2 Bi. in 10 years.
But we are struggling to put the 4 elements together you mentioned in the book i.e. 1. The ReBranding, 2. The Leadership Assessment, 3. Business Developement Capability Assessment & 4. The Future AceMicromatic structure.
In your words, “WHEN THE SHEPHERD NEEDS HELP”
& any help at this stage from you would be most welcome.

Thank you Mr. Bagchi for the beacon that this book will be for us!!

hemant kalikar Says
Wednesday April 16th 2014

good evening mr.bagchi,
am proprietor of a small unit manufacturing and installing electronic security systems since 15 years.I am sensing growth since last 5 years and started planning for it since last two years but was confused for the employeee part as they had with me since long but as u say are rabbit catchers.Last evening i had been to factory of my friend and fortunately he gifted me THE ELEPHANT CATCHERS at about 11.30 when i was halfway through the book i got my aim and solution .thnx

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