Anil Modi: Journey fostering Creativity and Innovation

Anil Modi MD Aryan Labs | Insights Success | Business Magazine

As the pioneer of driving customer experience revolution, Anil Modi is the Managing Director of Aryan Labs and is a seasoned entrepreneur & Angel Investor in Analytics, ML, AI and CX Domains.
With over 25 years of experience that includes CEO, CMO, EVP, and VP positions till today, how would you like to define this journey?
My journey can be best defined as “Expanding the frontiers”. In all of my roles, I was fortunate to lead initiatives that delivered innovation in business plans and then leverage these innovations to do some marquee deals. It all started with my first business role in Hughes, before that I was more of a technology Geek. I was given responsibility to initiate a key function of revenue; it was fun painting on a clean slate and makes a success out of it. Gaining confidence, I was able to steer the largest deal of the industry for Hughes. At GTL, I started remote management of IT infrastructure for Global corporates, won a marquee global deal from a large consumer goods company. Later on, industry caught on to this practice, now popularly known as “Remote Infrastructure Management”. At Aegis, the journey involved multiple roles, watching the firm grow from a few millions in revenue to more than a billion dollar. Here too I won a large outsourcing contract, which turned out to be the most profitable deal ever. At the helm of Aegis Marketing, I ensured a number of innovations leading to strong brand recognition, so much so that we were being pegged in the same set as our much larger competitors. Innovation Lab, a unique initiative, delivered some path-breaking products like LISA, ANN and Analytics. It was at this point, Ananto Analytics took birth, a firm that delivered business analytics as a service. An insightful journey for our customers, once again the innovation in algorithms, process excellence and integration of diverse tools brought together to create solutions that industry considered as cutting edge. Aryan Labs now raises the bar still further and targets better understanding of “Customer Experiences” using proprietary Algorithms, Marketing Innovation, and Customer Centricity.
Expanding horizons excites me, it’s in my DNA and I shall continue to do so.
Kindly brief us about the key milestones you have accomplished or some of the mentionable moments of your professional journey.
Some of the key professional milestones were; being youngest business manager, fastest growth to business role, largest deal closure in the history of the firm, recognition as business leader in various forums, featured as one of the 12 Global Marketing Leaders by a book from Thomson Press, Marcom professional of the year and brand leadership awards among others.
However what truly excites me are the personal milestones, which truly shaped me. I started as a hard-core technologist in R&D, yet pivoted to a business role when I wanted to. In business roles, I was fortunate to get opportunities for closing marquee deals, start new functions and lead innovation. More than professional success, recognition by industry leaders and gaining the significant trust of my bosses was most rewarding. At the height of my professional success, a leap to entrepreneurship happened. Jumping in an unknown, risky and financially draining entrepreneurship came only naturally; comfort zones never challenged me enough. For last year and a half, I am developing another paradigm shift in the way businesses understand and deploy customer experiences. This shall yield a significant change in their business outlook. In addition, I spent time helping young budding entrepreneurs with advice and capital, another milestone that gives immense satisfaction.
What is the one thing that is acting as your motivational tool? Or, who is your role model and how the person inspires and motivates you?
Sustained motivation is largely an inner calling. “Challenge” me to get the best out of me. Don’t challenge me and I shall find a way to challenge myself. My competitive spirits are kindled by challenging situations and warrior traits of sharp mind, meticulous planning, and detailed preparation come afore.
There is no particular role model per se, however, over the years two of my bosses had a major impact on my work life. One is Aparup Sengupta and other Partho Banerjee. They have been instrumental in building some of my work principals and ethos.
What are the distinctive services offered by Aryan Labs?
Aryan Labs services are quite simple to understand. Based on three pillars – Leadership Priority, Customer Intelligence, and Empowered Employees, we advise firms to become customer-centric. Behind these pillars is a plethora of competencies of Research, Management, Change Management, Analytics, Business Intelligence, Predictive Analytics, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Market Surveys, Satisfaction Surveys, CX measurement among others. It’s unique to bring these competencies together for an integrated CX outlook.
Net-Net we help from design to implementation to measurement of CX in your organization.
Kindly explain the Customer Experience Management as a successful business model.
CX Management is going to be the way of life for most consumer-oriented businesses. No longer is the product or service a key differentiator; it is going to be all about meeting customer expectations. Both Wal-Mart and Nordstrom have happy customers and both are quite profitable as well; a strong example that meeting customer expectations is the key to sustainable and profitable business, irrespective of nature of your market. As to the business models, it’s about time that consumer-oriented organizations realize that Gross Margin increments are less because of the decrease in direct costs and more due to higher revenues by happy customers. Making a customer happy is no longer in the marketing domain; it is equally impacted by all the major departments of the firm. Imagine a telecom customer who gets fantastic service and coverage but ends up getting incorrect bills each month, CX levels shall be obviously low in spite of great service.
Kindly share your perspective on the current industry scenario and how do you see the future at the Industry level.
The market is in transition; firms are still struggling with imbibition of some recent technologies of Analytics, BI, AI, and ML. The insights so gained are however used to improve one of two business parameters.  With CX Management, the emphasis is on the overall functioning of the firm. Think of it this way, Analytics can help a particular marketing campaign to be most effective and bring success to the campaign. Even if the campaign were successful, CX management would suffer if let’s say implementation or service or billing department are not delivering as per the expectations. All functions have to be effective, work cohesively and deliver on firms overall promise to get a high margin customer.
Today firms are yet to transition to such a thought process. Aryan Labs is ahead of its time; we choose to be early, in the process working closely with early adopters. Encouraging news is to read how Big-5 consulting and management firms are now pinning CX Management as the next frontier of game-changing business advantage.
What would be your advice to the budding players waiting to make a mark in this industry?
Be aware of the complexity of the solution you are offering. Combining Marketing, Analytics and Customer Service fundamentals in one outcome is much more complex than it sounds. However the market is nascent, there is a significant opportunity for innovation, market expansion, growth, and sustenance. Try and be a relevant and trusted partner to your customers. Deliver this with focus, commitment and perseverance and Market will soon enough take notice of you.

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