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Many give us knowledge, some inspire us, but very few spur us to dream big. This book relives late Professor CK Prahalad's dream life - from a boy who studied in a Tamil-medium school among the poor in Coimbatore, and went on to do MBA at IIM Ahmedabad, a doctorate at the Harvard Business School and sat on the boards of several large global corporations.
Yet, this is not a biography. It is a melange of rare stories of the profound impact CK had on global and Indian business leaders, CEOs, executives, students and teachers, and while doing so, looks at the timeless lessons he left behind for future generations.
This book is for those who get excited and inspired by how path-breaking ideas and deep insights on leadership, strategy and behaviour change the way we run our lives and businesses. It is for those who believe that the world's most difficult problems like poverty can be addressed by asking simple questions and finding innovative solutions for solving them.
Readers will find riveting stories of how CK transformed the mindsets of frightened Indian business leaders, after 1991 Reforms, into formidable global players. It is fascinating to learn how he also greatly influenced the direction and growth of India's information technology sector.
To those who have heard CK talk and have read his books, he seemed tough and distant. This book demystifies the man and makes him eminently approachable.
While the book is essentially about the Big Impact of the Big Man on Indian business since 1991, it doubles up smartly as an incisive commentary on India's tryst with rediscovering its self-belief.
Through this book top global and Indian business leaders share their gut-wrenching experiences, their failures, their success stories as well as their disappointments with issues such as governance and leadership. It also recommends a way forward for India to reclaim its rich past.