Exclusive | Focus is to build more content based programmes: Ad Club's Bipin Pandit

The Advertising Club Bombay which was recently rechristened as The Advertising Club, thus taking a national platform, made a major announcement post the AGM in September 2012.  The Advertising Club’s President Shashi Sinha announced the promotion of Bipin R Pandit as the Chief Operating Officer of the Adclub.
Adgully in conversation with Bipin Pandit, COO, The Advertising Club, to know what is in store, post the announcement.
Adgully (AG): You have come a long way since you joined the The Adclub way back in 1998. How would you view your journey with them since then?
Bipin Pandit (BP): The journey has been really exciting. I had joined the Ad Club in 1998 and during my tenure I was promoted from an Executive Secretary to Manager to General Manager and now COO! Adclub gave me an opportunity to meet and interact with the top bosses of organisations, who form the managing committee of the club. This was a perfect blend of my natural tendency to love people, meet and interact with them. This also was the best way to keep the learning process continuous as the 15 – 16 member committee of various MD’s and CEO’s always has something thoughtful to offer.  
AG: What are the major changes you have witnessed at the club since your early days here?
BP: During my good old days at the Adclub, we had a lot of heavy-weights from various organisations at the committee. But today I experience a lot of freedom with the younger crop coming in, the way they think and work. People like Bhaskar Das, Sunil Lulla, Shashi Sinha etc, are more like friends with their approach towards to me and that has been very supportive; they love and accept new ideas and my suggestions. Secondly, we are surely looking to go national with the Adclub.  In fact we actively support APPIEs at Singapore and get a good presence over there, which gives me a lot of happiness. Also, some of the initiatives I took up have been very well appreciated. For instance, when I suggested to the committee to begin with a programme called ‘Media Review’, the programme was taken up and has received a good response from the industry. Also, for this year at EMVIEs, we thought of ‘paperless’ judging, which was a huge challenge, but some senior members on the board said that it felt like being at Cannes, which is a huge compliment.   
AG: You love to face challenges in life and in your work. How challenging have your different portfolios in the Adclub been till date?
BP: I love challenges. But I believe that the biggest challenge was to manage so many top run ‘bosses’ all together in one place in the first place! These are people who are under constant media eye and I work with very closely, so this posts a task to manage them and their activities. Other challenges I believe are the events that we do; each event is like the last one. But with the hard work that goes into each event, people who have been supporting through, come up to me and say that I keep competing with myself, and is a huge complement for me. 
AG: According to you, what are the advantages of the Adclub becoming involved on the national front?
BP: With the club going on the national platter, I will get to travel and move out and get an opportunity and liberty to hold tie-up, expand the network of the Adclub and getting in major stalwarts of the industry from the major metros on our board. Thus, it would be more exciting.  
AG: You are of the opinion that ‘the process of evolution never ceases at the Adclub’. Could you please elaborate on this statement.
BP: There have been other Adclubs in the country, but we are a committee here to do great things. So there an urge to bring newness to everything we do. Typically, for example, the EMVIEs is a completely manual format, but we hired officials and numerous judges, and the response we got was that the entire property was glitch-free. Also, I am of the opinion that with the inclusion of the ‘Band Bajaa Award’ at EMVIEs, we recognise the talent within the fraternity, instead of outsiders; which was again well reviewed as a concept by the members and the committee.
AG: As the COO of the club do we see any major changes unfolding soon at the club?
BP: Well with the Adclub going national, you may see the inclusion of members from other metros also. For example, we have representation like N. Rajaram from Airtel and Sanjeev Bharghava from JWT, among others; also more and more regions are also coming in on the managing committee and that in itself is a big and evident change. Also, just like we made ABBYs , EFFIEs and EMVIEs huge and successful brands, I look forward to adding another two – three similar properties to the bouquet offering from the club which is has also put the club in a very different fashion on the financial front.
AG: What would some of the immediate task at hand be?
BP: The immediate task at hand is spreading the net at the regional level. Also I look forward to meet a few prominent opinion leaders and brain storm as to what we can do to better the offerings and services at the Adclub. There have been talks among the members and close associates that there is a constant desire to have content based programmes, and Adclub has always been strong on the content front. So we are looking forward to work on these lines.  
AG: Any one advice you would like to give the new agencies?
BP: Honestly, in my opinion, the newer agencies on the block (3-4) years old are doing some amazing work and banking not only national but international awards as well!
A commerce graduate, Pandit started his career at the accounts department of The Baroda Rayon Corporation in 1981. After six years, he moved on to join Castrol India in 1987 as in-charge of the control section. Ten years later, he shifted to become the executive secretary of the Ad Club thus making his association an extensive 14 years long.
Pandit, who is known to have a keen interest in music is a proud member of his band Khumaar - Experience musical intoxication - a Hindi musical night which has become very popular within and outside the industry. He takes this opportunity to thank God for bestowing the talent to organize and compeer musical nights which have touched 1000's in numbers along with the art to mimic many film personalities. His other interests have been Advertising, Events, Media, Marketing, Music, Compeering, Mimicry, Cricket, Spiritualism, Shares, Astrology etc. | By Ankita Tanna [ankita(at)adgully.com]

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