event image


Event held on 29th March 2019

Freelancing has truly come of age for the modern corporate professional in India. In an era of increasing life-spans, and shortening career-spans, how can experienced professionals prepare themselves for the changing demands of jobs and careers? And how can they adapt and succeed in the emerging freelance gig-economy? What are the options to them after retiring from a fruitful corporate career?

In the inaugural event of Gurukul – “Thriving In The Gig Economy”, organized by IndusGuru, a curated platform for independent business consultants, more than 100 senior freelance professionals – from functions related to Strategy & Finance, HumanResources & Organizaiton, Marketing & Operations, InfoTech & Digital, got together to discuss and explore these themes. The event was led by an eminent group of speakers and panelists, who have been CEO’s and Business Leaders – and then chosen to take the road-less traveled, including Mr R Gopalakrishnan, Milind Sarwate, Pramod Gothi, Anant Bhagwati and Priyanka Gulati.

The key note speaker, R Gopalakrishnan, who is a celebrated author and has served on the Boards of India’s 2 most respected companies – HUL and Tata Sons, regaled the audience with his personal life journey of learning and renewal – abiding themes he has explored in his books. He spoke of the need to unlearn before learning, when faced with new situations, challenges and roles – citing his own experience in Unilever Arabia and later, when he moved from HUL, as one the oldest executive Board members to the Tata Group – where he was the youngest on the Board! Most importantly, he shared his tip to staying young– “keep your Telomeres long”! Telomeres as biology students would know, are the end points of our DNA, whose wearing off and shortening leads to aging.

The finale of the session was a panel discussion, drawing out the life events, stories and mantras of success from accomplished business leaders – who had chosen, at a relatively early point to leave the corporate rat-race – and do something different, whether it was being a Coach, an Independent consultant, an Entrepreneur, or join the Social Sector.

Milind Sarwate, a celebrated CFO with Marico and Godrej, shared his own life changing event at 50, when he decided he must do something different. He now serves on the Board of several listed companies, and runs a financial advisory firm.

Priyanka Gulati and Anant Bhagwati, represented that breed of young professional of today, who have chosen to give up lucrative corporate & consulting career in a large firm in their 30’s and 40’s– and instead do something different, be it turn entrepreneur or join the Social sector – to contribute back to society.

The audience engaged in high-octane Q&A with IndusGuru’s established management consultants Vinu Vishwanathan and Sangeetha Shankar. Both questioned the assumed norms of consulting and marketing. Vinu translated the diversity of India’s culture to his success as an independent management consulting – when in Rome do as Romans do. Debatable? Perhaps. Sangeetha shook and questioned the very foundation of marketing. Why do you choose Amazon over Flipkart? What makes a product successful? Its marketing campaigns? Word of mouth? After-sales service? None of those.

IndusGuru today has grown to a network of 400+ senior professionals, with a combined corporate experience of 6000+ manyears.


A professional manager since 1967, having attended the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School, he has served as Chairman of Uniliver Arabia, MD of Brooke Bond Lipton, Vice Chairman of Hindustan Lever and as ED of Tata Sons and several other Tata companies. He also serves as an independent director of listed companies Castrol India, Akzo Nobel & Hemas Holdings PLC, Sri Lanka.

He is a start-up mentor, actively engaged in both instructional and inspirational speaking and the author of seven bestselling books.
Milind Sarwate
Founded Increate Value Advisors LLP in 2015, after 32 years across Marico & Godrej in Finance, HR, Strategy & Corporate Communication. He facilitates creation of business & social value through Advisory & Board roles and investment largely in Consumer & Social Responsibility sectors. His Directorships include Glenmark, Mindtree, Metropolis, & House of Anita Dongre.

Accolades received by Milind include ICAI Award -CFO - FMCG (2011), CNBC TV-18 CFO Award -FMCG & Retail (2012) and entry in CFO India's Hall of Fame (2013). He is a Chartered Accountant, Cost Accountant, Company Secretary, Commerce Graduate and CII-Fulbright Fellow (Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, USA).
Pramod Gothi
Pramod is currently helping leaders think differently, he has coached more than 150 CEOs, COOs and Entrepreneurs across a range of industries .He is also advising Family Managed Businesses for their growth, strategy and succession planning.

During his 38 years long corporate career, he has served at leadership positions across diverse industries. Out of these, 25 years has been as MD/CEO of various group companies of Piramal Group. He has setup greenfield projects and turned around loss-making companies. He was instrumental in setting up joint ventures and technical collaborations with Italian, German, French and Japanese companies during his tenure.
Priyanka Gulati
A seasoned professional with over 18 years of experience in Management Consulting and entrepreneurship. She has had exposure working in Tier 1 consulting firms such as Accenture and Deloitte in her career span across multiple industries spanning multiple geographies before establishing her own consulting boutique firm in India. She is also an independent Director on the Board of various companies and runs a NGO.
Anant Bhagwati
A management consultant and business strategist with close to two decades of experience charting the growth trajectory and strategies of various companies, he is currently a Director at Dasra. He has had a corporate career in FMCG and Consulting (Bain India and Accenture), culminating as Partner at Bain India, where he led Digital Transformation in India.

Anant is passionate about applying these skills learnt in the corporate world to support NGOs with strategy formulation , implementation and scaling fields.
Sangeetha Shankar
A marketing guru with nearly 20 years of leadership experience steering the marketing, communication and outreach programs of giants such as HDFC, HSBC and National Australia Bank, she has spent the last decade amassing a wealth of knowledge and experience in digital marketing, setting up digital as a channel for sales, bridging the gap between product and sales. She also consults companies, auditing their digital presence as well as assessing their digital maturity and potential to build “digital customer journeys”.

She is an innovative marketer with proven expertise in brand growth, digital strategy, customer journeys & entrepreneurial experience.
Vinu Vishwanathan
A business strategist and serial entrepreneur, he has devised and executed elaborate marketing strategies to scale-up several companies, for new market entries and for brand positioning. He has a startup consultancy and strategic advisory which has consulted for brands such as Maklay, Ruchi Foodline, Aver Industries, Durotex Paints, among others, and helped startups zero-in on viable projects varying from retail to manufacturing.

He is a business ideator and been a strategic business consultant for FMCG & FMCD businesses, a business coach, a brand consultant and an evangelist.


To speak with one of our Business Representatives contact – or call +91-98209-01755/ +91-98203-72596.