18 August 2015 12:29:55 IST

'No perfect solution to business issues, only optimal ones'

Fusing art and science of management is important to be a good manager, says Harish Bhat Tata GEC member

Harish Bhat is a member of the Group Executive Council (GEC) of Tata Sons. He joined the Tata group in 1987, as an officer in the Tata Administrative Service (TAS). Both, RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan, a batchmate, and Bhat were gold medallists of the 1987 PGDM batch from IIM-A.

An engineer from BITS Pilani, Bhat is a director on the boards of several Tata companies, including Tata Global Beverages, Tata Coffee, Trent, Tata Starbucks, Nourishco and Infiniti Retail. Prior to his appointment as a member of the GEC, he was managing director and CEO of Tata Global Beverages.

During his career of 27 years with the Tata group, Bhat has served in several senior roles, which include stints as chief operating officer of the watches and jewellery businesses of Titan Company, and in the group’s telecom business.

He has played a key role in proposing many strategic plans over the past two decades, including the launch and nurturing of many iconic brands, the successful turnaround of the jewellery business, as well as the acquisition of Tetley.

to Vinay Kamath on learnings from his MBA and how relevant they are today. Click here to view a video of Harish Bhat speaking

In this exclusive video interview to BLoC on the learnings from his MBA and its usefulness to him in corporate life, Bhat says an MBA gives you all-round skills. But, he says, the learning from the workplace is that there is no perfect solution to most business issues, though there is always an optimal solution.

“You will never have all the data at hand to reach that perfect solution and, for many business problems, your text-books don’t contain the answer, unlike engineering or science text-books. The answer is in your mind and in the ingenuity you bring to bear to the problem at hand. Management is partly a science and partly an art; fusing them together is important to become a good manager in life,” says Bhat.

To read more from the My MBA Lessons section, click here