PEMANDU Russia talks humanity at the Skolkovo Startup Village 2019

In the thick of what many call ‘the startup era’, aspirations towards effective and innovative entrepreneurship continue to loom large worldwide. And the buzz at the Skolkovo Startup Village 2019 event held in June, is testament that this is no different in Russia.

Organised by the Skolkovo Foundation, the annual event brings together the most innovative, talented and open-minded individuals from the business communities in Russia and CIS countries. Chris Tan, Managing Director of PEMANDU Russia, was invited by the IPChain Association to share a fresh perspective on delivery transformation – specifically how value creation through human capital and knowledge was instrumental in effecting Malaysia’s socio-economic transformation.

Drawing from a crucial aspect of PEMANDU Associates’ Big Fast Results (BFR) – 8 Steps of Transformation© methodology, Chris remarked, “It is critically important to have a program management framework that constantly aligns planning and implementation actions of the implementation community on the ground with the high-level aspirations of the leadership”.

Speaking on how the methodology can be applied to start-ups, Chris illustrated a condensed three-part checklist comprising a) a detailed program of action with clear accountabilities, timelines, and targets, b) a program management framework that guides the transition from planning to implementation, and c) a problem-solving mechanism to make quick decisions at the numerous inflection points a startup can expect to encounter.

Having covered more of the process and systems-oriented approaches of the firm, Chris went on to elaborate on what the firm calls ‘transformational leadership’ to deliver on a start-up’s business objectives, reminding the audience that, “even though most of you are starting up small technology ventures, you will face the same transformational leadership challenges as CEOs of the largest corporations, if not more so.” This was also a chance for the audience to be taken through the firm’s proprietary 6 Secrets of Transformational Leadership © – a holistic framework to help leaders effect tangible change in any organisation, big or small.

These humanistic insights, which included adopting a “Discipline of Action” and “play[ing] the Game of The Impossible” were a refreshing take for much of the audience. But what perhaps piqued the most intrigue was the mention of the sixth and final point on ‘Divine Intervention’ – the acknowledgment of mankind’s limited control over the outcomes of our actions. Chris quickly followed this up with an exposé on the firm’s counterintuitive belief that a leader who knows that he or she is not in ultimate control over every variable is a leader who is more willing to take bold steps required in pushing ahead in the transformation journey in the pursuit of delivering big fast results.