Convinced ISB Board members to come to Hyderabad: Chandrababu Naidu

By Team Marcomm Dec 16, 2022

Creating something out of nothing is the greatest lesson that former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu can impart best. And he did just that at the closing of the 20-year celebration of the Indian School of Business.

The next thing that Mr Naidu excels in is his vision for the future. So, when he learnt about the idea, he realised the potential and did not sit thinking over a rejection he had received earlier from the ISB board members. “I invited them to have a cup of coffee. I knew if they come to Hyderabad, they cannot say no to me,” said Naidu speaking at the valedictory ceremony of ISB’s 20-year celebrations. 

“I sent letters to each of the board members…I garlanded them. And then, I served them breakfast,” he said, exemplifying how he worked to convince his naysayers. He gave a PowerPoint presentation titled ‘Hyderabad the future knowledge hub of the world.’ 

Asked by the ISB board members what he would be able to give, he promised to provide ‘plus one’ over the incentive that the other states were willing to provide to the upcoming b-school.

L-R_Dr Pramath Raj Sinha, Founding Dean, ISB and Shri N Chandrababu Naidu_ former Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh

The board members were on a whirlwind tour of Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, and Chennai to locate an address for setting up the school. However, touched by his warmth, vision, and right intentions, the ISB Board members chose to locate the school over 260 acres of what he described as ‘barren land’ in Gachibowli and next to a Central university. 

Through the interaction, Mr Naidu distributed nuggets of his life’s wisdom for future business leaders among the students and alums of ISB. “Life will have its ups and downs. There will be crises. But we always have to move forward,” he shared to a packed audience at the auditorium. 

ISB’s founding Dean, Pramath Raj Sinha, who was instrumental in building the school’s relationship with the then Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister, interacted with him during the event. He also recounted the many other generosities he showered on the school in its initial years. 

Madan Pillutla, Dean, ISB and Professor of Organisational Behaviour, welcomed Mr Naidu’s vision to make ISB count among the top three b-schools of the world. “What we want to do now is India-relevant research which would be relevant for our economy, polity, and businesses are what we aim for,” said Dean Pillutla addressing Mr Naidu. 

The talk was attended by ISB Board members Srini Raju, G V Prasad and former Dean Ajit Rangnekar. Top leaders from the corporate and academia participated in the talk along with alumni of the school who had come for the ‘Solstice 2022’ event and filled up all the chairs and staircase of the auditorium.