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Widely regarded as one of the world's leading experts on business and management strategy, globalization and innovation, Vijay Govindarajan (known as VG) is a Coxe Distinguished Professor at Dartmouth College's Tuck School of Business. As the first Professor in Residence and Chief Innovation Consultant at General Electric he pioneered the concept of reverse innovation to refer to innovations first adopted in the developing world. The invention of this concept was chosen by the Harvard Business Review as one of the Great Moments in Management of the 20th century.

BusinessWeek named the Tuck faculty as its outstanding faculty and VG as one of its top ten business School professors. Forbes selected him as one of their top five most respected executive coaches on strategy, The Times (London) chose him as a top 50 management thinker and he was named a “Rising Superstar" by The Economist.

More than a quarter of the CEOs and top management teams in the Fortune 500 have invited VG to work with them on strategy issues. His clients include Boeing, Coca-Cola, Colgate, Deere, FedEx, GE, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, J.P. Morgan Chase, J&J, New York Times, P&G, Sony, and Wal-Mart.

VG has achieved the rare distinction of reaching double figures for articles published in both the highest-rated academic journals and the most prestigious practitioner journals. He has written several articles for the Harvard Business Review, one of which won the McKinsey award for best article. His book Reverse Innovation is a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller.

A Ph.D. from Harvard Business School, VG was awarded the Robert Bowne prize for the best thesis proposal. He received his MBA from the same institution, being included in the Dean's Honor List. He took his Chartered Accountancy degree in India, where he won the President's Gold Medal for being in the Premier rank nationwide.

Full Profile

Vijay Govindarajan, known as VG, is widely regarded as one of the world’s leading experts on strategy and innovation. He is the Coxe Distinguished Professor at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College. The Coxe Distinguished Professorship is a new Dartmouth-wide faculty chair. He was the first Professor in Residence and Chief Innovation Consultant at General Electric. He worked with GE’s CEO Jeff Immelt to write “How GE is Disrupting Itself”, the Harvard Business Review (HBR) article that pioneered the concept of reverse innovation—any innovation that is adopted first in the developing world. HBR picked reverse innovation as one of the Great Moments in Management in the Last Century. In the latest Thinkers50 Rankings, Govindarajan was ranked the #1 Indian Management Thinker.

VG writes about innovation and execution on several platforms including Harvard Business Review and Bloomberg BusinessWeek. He is a co-leader of a global initiative to design a $300 House.

Govindarajan has been identified as a leading management thinker by influential publications including: Outstanding Faculty, named by Business Week in its Guide to Best B-Schools; Top Ten Business School Professor in Corporate Executive Education, named by Business Week; Top Five Most Respected Executive Coach on Strategy, rated by Forbes; Top 50 Management Thinker, named by The London Times; Rising Super Star, cited by The Economist; Outstanding Teacher of the Year, voted by MBA students.

Prior to joining the faculty at Tuck, VG was on the faculties of Harvard Business School, INSEAD (Fontainebleau), and the Indian Institute of Management (Ahmedabad, India).

The recipient of numerous awards for excellence in research, Govindarajan was inducted into the Academy of Management Journals’ Hall of Fame, and ranked by Management International Review as one of the Top 20 North American Superstars for research in strategy and organization. One of his papers was recognized as one of the ten most-often cited articles in the entire 40-year history of Academy of Management Journal.

VG is a rare faculty who has published more than ten articles in the top academic journals (Academy of Management Journal, Academy of Management Review, Strategic Management Journal) and more than ten articles in prestigious practitioner journals including several best-selling HBR articles. He received the McKinsey Award for the best article in HBR. He published the New York Times and Wall Street Journal best-seller, Reverse Innovation.

VG has worked with CEOs and top management teams in more than 25% of the Fortune 500 firms to discuss, challenge, and escalate their thinking about strategy. His clients include: Boeing, Coca-Cola, Colgate, Deere, FedEx, GE, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, J.P. Morgan Chase, J&J, New York Times, P&G, Sony, and Wal-Mart. He has been a keynote speaker in the BusinessWeek CEO Forum, HSM World Business Forum, TED, and World Economic Forum at Davos.

VG received his doctorate from the Harvard Business School and was awarded the Robert Bowne Prize for the best thesis proposal. He also received his MBA with distinction from the Harvard Business School where he was included in the Dean’s Honor List. Prior to this, VG received his Chartered Accountancy degree in India where he was awarded the President’s Gold Medal for obtaining the first rank nationwide.


Vijay Govindarajan Speaker Videos Back to top

Vijay Govindarajan - Ten Rules for Strategic Innovators at the London Business Forum


"How is the company's energy focused…so you are still relevant in 2030?" VG asks, challenging his audience to see what outmoded practices they need to drop and what they need to develop to face the challenges of the future. “I say strategy has nothing to do with competing for the present," he explains, encouraging differentiation between present-day needs and future expectations.

Keynote Speech


Tea with Vijay Govindarajan economist.com


Vijay Govindarajan on Reverse Innovation - Nordic Business Forum


TEDxBigApple - Vijay Govindarajan - Reverse Innovation



Speeches / Speaking Engagements Back to top


VG presents his exceptional knowledge of innovation strategy in a customized form, tailored for audience and situation. He explains how companies have to continually redefine their strategy to cope with competitive imitation and constant marketplace changes.

As well as defining the challenges, VG offers solutions; using a research study of innovation initiatives for over 50 large corporations, he explains how the “organizational DNA" of a company needs to be changed across staffing, structure, systems and culture in order to succeed. He also details his innovative concept of reverse innovation, where new business models can first be developed in emerging markets. He also illustrates how American healthcare can learn lessons from the Indian hospital model.

STRATEGY IS INNOVATION
VG customizes his presentation on Strategy is Innovation to fit a given audience and situation.

We now live in an era of constant change, driven by the dynamic forces of technology, globalization, the Internet, changing demographics, and shifting customer preferences. As a result, companies find that their strategies need almost constant redefinition—either because the old assumptions are no longer valid, or because the previous strategy has been imitated and neutralized by competitors. Rooted in these premises, the strategic and organizational challenges become:


  • How do we identify the market discontinuities that could transform our industry?
  • How can we create new growth platforms that exploit new market realities?
  • What are our core competencies and how can we leverage them to generate growth?
  • What new core competencies do we need to build?
  • What organizational DNA will allow us to anticipate and respond to changes on a continual basis?
  • How do we execute breakthrough strategies?
  • INNOVATION EXECUTION
    Implementing Box 3 breakthrough innovation projects is the triple-flip-with-a-quadruple-twist of general management. No matter how talented and experienced the leader, chances are that this is a new and unfamiliar challenge. VG can help you understand the three fundamental challenges faced by Box 3 strategic experiments, and can offer several specific recommendations to help you overcome them.

    Even world-class companies with successful business models eventually hit the ceiling on growth. That’s what makes emerging industries so attractive. These markets represent huge opportunities for capturing long term growth and competitive advantage. But because they lack a proven formula for making a profit, they are risky and expensive—with dire consequences for failure.

    Vijay Govindarajan argues that every organization’s survival depends on Box 3 breakthrough innovations that target such untested markets, but few firms understand how to implement them successfully. Too many managers think that a great idea is enough to get them from business plan to profitability, but somewhere in the middle of the innovation process, most organizations stumble. Govindarajan reveals where firms go wrong on their journey from idea to execution—and outline exactly what it takes to build a breakthrough business while sustaining excellence in an existing one.

    Based on an in-depth, multiyear research study of innovative initiatives at over 50 large corporations, Vijay Govindarajan identifies three central challenges to strategic innovation:


  • Forgetting some key assumptions that made the current business successful
  • Borrowing assets from the established organization to fuel the new one
  • Learning how to test critical assumptions about the future.
  • Govindarajan explains how to overcome these challenges by rewiring the "organizational DNA" across four main areas: staffing, structure, systems, and culture, in order for a promising new venture to succeed. He also spells out the critical role senior executives must play in managing the inevitable tensions that arise between today’s business and tomorrow’s.

    Breakthrough growth opportunities can make or break companies and careers. Govindarajan can present a guide to execution in unexplored territory.

    REVERSE INNOVATION
    Historically, multinationals innovated in a rich country and sold those products in a poor country. Reserve Innovation is doing exactly the opposite. It is about innovating in a poor country and selling those products in a rich country. Reverse Innovation is a Box 3 strategy.

    In this presentation, VG introduces the idea of developing new business models in emerging markets first—instead of scaling down rich-world products—to unlock a world of opportunities for your business. Stemming from a pivotal article in Harvard Business Review, his reverse innovation presentation offers an important next step for companies looking to derive long-term value from emerging markets. According to VG, "Reverse innovation is a potent force that will transform the global economy over the next few decades. It will redistribute power and wealth to countries and companies who understand it and diminish those who do not."

    VG offers a glimpse at strategies from some of the world’s leading companies—from GE and Deere & Company to P&G and PepsiCo. There is no one industry that needs to reverse innovate; instead, all industries must have interest in the needs and opportunities in the developing world in order to thrive in tomorrow’s global marketplace.

    HBR picked reverse innovation as one of the Great Moments in Management in the Last Century. Reverse Innovation was a New York Times and Wall Street Journal best seller.

    DELIVERING WORLD-CLASS HEALTHCARE, AFFORDABLY
    In this presentation, VG explains how innovative Indian hospitals are delivering high-quality healthcare at prices 95% below American hospitals. Although the context is very different in these two countries, there are lessons that U.S. healthcare leaders can learn and apply.

    To provide high-quality care at ultra-low costs, private Indian hospitals have adopted three techniques: 1) hub-and-spoke networks; 2) task shifting; and 3) basic frugality. These approaches enable these hospitals to maximize the number of patients served, while benefiting from economies of scale. In the years ahead, U.S. healthcare providers should learn about and consider adopting these principles as they strive to expand access, improve quality, and reduce costs. If U.S. providers don’t change, they actually risk being disrupted by these efficient, low-cost Indian providers.





    * Please note that while this speaker’s specific speaking fee falls within the range posted above (for Continental U.S. based events), fees are subject to change. For current fee information or international event fees (which are generally 50-75% more than U.S based event fees), please contact us.

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    Vijay-Govindarajan---Beyond-the-Idea

    Beyond the Idea
    Companies stumble when they imagine that innovation is mostly about ideas. The reality is that ideas are only beginnings. Indeed, even a company with the world’s best idea still faces a devilish challenge: it must build the business of tomorrow without endangering the business of today.

    Vijay Govindarajan and Chris Trimble are the world’s leading authorities on the successful management of innovation. In Beyond the Idea, they distill more than a decade of research and insight into a practical, accessible, read-at-one-sitting handbook that offers invaluable guidance for anyone charged with making innovation happen: executives, managers, consultants, project leaders, and teams.


    Reverse Innovation

    Reverse Innovation
    Reverse Innovation is the new business idea everyone is talking about. Why? Because it presents the blueprint for scaling growth in emerging markets, and importing low-cost and high impact innovations to mature ones.

    Innovation is no longer the exclusive domain of the Silicon Valley elite. Reverse Innovation will open your eyes to the fact that the dynamics of global innovation are changing—and if you want your firm to survive, you’d better pay attention. The gap between rich nations and emerging economies is closing. No longer will innovations travel the globe in only one direction, from developed to developing nations. They will also flow in reverse. CEOs of the world’s most influential companies agree and have cited Reverse Innovation as their playbook for the next generation of global growth.

    Authors Vijay Govindarajan and Chris Trimble of the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth explain where, when, and why reverse innovation is on the rise and why the implications are so profound. Learn how to make innovation in emerging markets happen and how such innovations can unlock even greater opportunity throughout the world. You’ll follow some of the world’s leading companies (including GE, Deere & Company, P&G, and PepsiCo) through stories that illustrate exactly what works and what doesn’t.

    If you’re in a Western economy, you need to accept that the future lies far from home. But the idea is not just for Western audiences. If innovation is at the heart of your company or your career, no matter where you practice business, Reverse Innovation is a phenomenon you need to understand. This book will help you do that.


    STRATEGY IS INNOVATION
    VG customizes his presentation on Strategy is Innovation to fit a given audience and situation.

    We now live in an era of constant change, driven by the dynamic forces of technology, globalization, the Internet, changing demographics, and shifting customer preferences. As a result, companies find that their strategies need almost constant redefinition—either because the old assumptions are no longer valid, or because the previous strategy has been imitated and neutralized by competitors. Rooted in these premises, the strategic and organizational challenges become:


  • How do we identify the market discontinuities that could transform our industry?
  • How can we create new growth platforms that exploit new market realities?
  • What are our core competencies and how can we leverage them to generate growth?
  • What new core competencies do we need to build?
  • What organizational DNA will allow us to anticipate and respond to changes on a continual basis?
  • How do we execute breakthrough strategies?
  • INNOVATION EXECUTION
    Implementing Box 3 breakthrough innovation projects is the triple-flip-with-a-quadruple-twist of general management. No matter how talented and experienced the leader, chances are that this is a new and unfamiliar challenge. VG can help you understand the three fundamental challenges faced by Box 3 strategic experiments, and can offer several specific recommendations to help you overcome them.

    Even world-class companies with successful business models eventually hit the ceiling on growth. That’s what makes emerging industries so attractive. These markets represent huge opportunities for capturing long term growth and competitive advantage. But because they lack a proven formula for making a profit, they are risky and expensive—with dire consequences for failure.

    Vijay Govindarajan argues that every organization’s survival depends on Box 3 breakthrough innovations that target such untested markets, but few firms understand how to implement them successfully. Too many managers think that a great idea is enough to get them from business plan to profitability, but somewhere in the middle of the innovation process, most organizations stumble. Govindarajan reveals where firms go wrong on their journey from idea to execution—and outline exactly what it takes to build a breakthrough business while sustaining excellence in an existing one.

    Based on an in-depth, multiyear research study of innovative initiatives at over 50 large corporations, Vijay Govindarajan identifies three central challenges to strategic innovation:


  • Forgetting some key assumptions that made the current business successful
  • Borrowing assets from the established organization to fuel the new one
  • Learning how to test critical assumptions about the future.
  • Govindarajan explains how to overcome these challenges by rewiring the "organizational DNA" across four main areas: staffing, structure, systems, and culture, in order for a promising new venture to succeed. He also spells out the critical role senior executives must play in managing the inevitable tensions that arise between today’s business and tomorrow’s.

    Breakthrough growth opportunities can make or break companies and careers. Govindarajan can present a guide to execution in unexplored territory.

    REVERSE INNOVATION
    Historically, multinationals innovated in a rich country and sold those products in a poor country. Reserve Innovation is doing exactly the opposite. It is about innovating in a poor country and selling those products in a rich country. Reverse Innovation is a Box 3 strategy.

    In this presentation, VG introduces the idea of developing new business models in emerging markets first—instead of scaling down rich-world products—to unlock a world of opportunities for your business. Stemming from a pivotal article in Harvard Business Review, his reverse innovation presentation offers an important next step for companies looking to derive long-term value from emerging markets. According to VG, "Reverse innovation is a potent force that will transform the global economy over the next few decades. It will redistribute power and wealth to countries and companies who understand it and diminish those who do not."

    VG offers a glimpse at strategies from some of the world’s leading companies—from GE and Deere & Company to P&G and PepsiCo. There is no one industry that needs to reverse innovate; instead, all industries must have interest in the needs and opportunities in the developing world in order to thrive in tomorrow’s global marketplace.

    HBR picked reverse innovation as one of the Great Moments in Management in the Last Century. Reverse Innovation was a New York Times and Wall Street Journal best seller.

    DELIVERING WORLD-CLASS HEALTHCARE, AFFORDABLY
    In this presentation, VG explains how innovative Indian hospitals are delivering high-quality healthcare at prices 95% below American hospitals. Although the context is very different in these two countries, there are lessons that U.S. healthcare leaders can learn and apply.

    To provide high-quality care at ultra-low costs, private Indian hospitals have adopted three techniques: 1) hub-and-spoke networks; 2) task shifting; and 3) basic frugality. These approaches enable these hospitals to maximize the number of patients served, while benefiting from economies of scale. In the years ahead, U.S. healthcare providers should learn about and consider adopting these principles as they strive to expand access, improve quality, and reduce costs. If U.S. providers don’t change, they actually risk being disrupted by these efficient, low-cost Indian providers.



    Vijay Govindarajan - Ten Rules for Strategic Innovators at the London Business Forum


    "How is the company's energy focused…so you are still relevant in 2030?" VG asks, challenging his audience to see what outmoded practices they need to drop and what they need to develop to face the challenges of the future. “I say strategy has nothing to do with competing for the present," he explains, encouraging differentiation between present-day needs and future expectations.

    Keynote Speech


    Tea with Vijay Govindarajan economist.com


    Vijay Govindarajan on Reverse Innovation - Nordic Business Forum


    TEDxBigApple - Vijay Govindarajan - Reverse Innovation