Access is our thought leadership platform where we will review and discuss new FedEx products, technologies, and processes. Additionally, some of the brightest minds at FedEx will share trends and provide their insights into how culture, people and policy are affecting the global marketplace.
Syndicate content

India Trade Mission - "It looks chaotic, but somehow everything works."

"This city needs a new coat of paint."

"It looks chaotic, but somehow everything works."

"The exterior of a building can be completely deceptive."

These are just a few of the very insightful comments I overheard from some colleagues during the recent FedEx sponsored Trade Mission to India (November 9-14, 2008).

Overall, there are numerous juxtapositions that exist between India's "hard infrastructure" - including airports, railways and highways - versus the country's "soft infrastructure" - such as work environments and policies and procedures.

As we travelled through the country and used the airports, roads and other public infrastructure, it was evident that there is opportunity for improvement!  Having grown up in India and visiting on a regular basis, I can see palpable changes in the right direction.  For example, the Mumbai domestic airport is a far cry from where it was even a couple of years ago.  Even so, for a first-time visitor some of these elements can be a bit surprising.

However, if you are able to see past those initial impressions, chances are once again you will be surprised by the ways the country consistently delivers. Domestic airlines are impeccable, as are the hotels and the service. Then, you show up at the office and you feel like you are back in the Western world.  Not only because of the English language is the lingua franca, but also because the language of business is essentially the same as the one you use back home in the western world.  India definitely scores on the "soft infrastructure" part of the equation.  The creativity, innovative spirit and entrepreneurship of the Indian culture are hallmarks of success.

To get a quick feel of the freedom of press and the chaotic democracy that is India today, while in the country I encourage everyone to turn on the TV and watch the Indian channels (several of them are in English, in case you are wondering).

I am now in Delhi to speak at the World Economic Forum's India Economic Summit - primarily on the issues of infrastructure in India.  More on what I learn there in my next blog......


Comments (2) 

* Required fields

Hi all, New to the forum, just thought I'd introduce myself :-)

Interesting ! I found this sentence very familiar. "It looks chaotic, but somehow everything works." Maybe our reality here in Argentina is quite alike. Regards ! Rodrigo

All comments are moderated. Comments will appear as soon as they are approved by the moderator. We will not post comments if they are defamatory, spam, off-topic If you do submit a comment, you warrant that it is your own original work, that it is not defamatory or offensive and does not infringe any law.
* Required fields
  • You may embed videos from the following providers . Just add the video URL to your textarea in the place where you would like the video to appear, i.e.
  • You may use <swf file="song.mp3"> to display Flash files inline

Type the characters you see in this picture. (verify using audio)
Type the characters you see in the picture above; if you can't read them, submit the form and a new image will be generated. Not case sensitive.

About This Blogger

Rajesh writes about his daily experiences at the forefront of global trade.

Other Posts by Raj Subramaniam