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Aug 11, 2008

Winner

Winners don’t do different things, they do things differently, said ‘Management Guru’, Shiv Khera, in his book ‘You Can Win’. M. Ponnuswami, President of Corporate Affairs & Soya, Sakthi Sugars Ltd. is one such. The 67-year-old began his career as a PA to the Managing Director in Sakthi Sugars and worked his way to the top, thanks to his ‘think and act different’ attitude.With just a pre-university status to boast of, he joined the Mysore University, while working, and obtained Masters Degree in Political Science. He then went on to become the Member of the American Management Association, Fellow Member of the Institute of Marketing Management, New Delhi and Associate member of the Institute of Purchasing and Supply, London.

An international consultant to the World Bonsai Friendship Federation of the United States, Mr. Ponnuswami believes that a successful manager must be a crisis management man. “He must rise to the occasion and contribute his mite in solving the crisis. He must also have the ownership feeling and update his knowledge in every other aspect, be it trade or his position, and involve himself in various other social activities.”

Mr. Ponnuswami is also known for his creative talents in landscaping and bonsai. He owns about 1000 bonsai plants and has been into it for more than three decades. His specialty in collecting bonsai from nature fetched him an award at the Asian Bonsai meet in Mumbai in 1996. Three years later he won the entry-prize winner of the Japan Airlines World Bonsai Contest and a decade later walked home with South Asia’s Best Bonsai Award. He is also into Suiseki collections. ‘Suiseki’ in Japanese means ‘Stone Appreciation’. He exhibited his rare collections in the World Suiseki Exhibition at Shanghai in China and was awarded with a citation at the World Convention in 1997.

A creator of artificial bonsai, Mr. Ponnuswami was conferred with the Sasya Bandhu (Protector of Environment and plants) title by Swamiji of the Sri Ganapati Sachchindananda Ashram, Mysore, in May 2007. He is also deeply involved in sports as a player, organiser and an administrator. Ball badminton is one his favourite sports. After serving the State association from 1981 and the National federation for over 15 years, Mr. Ponnuswami was elected president of the Ball Badminton Federation of India at Bellary in June this year. Having assumed charge as the president, Mr. Ponnuswami wants to further popularise the image of the sport at the national and international levels.

“We have office-bearers who are capable of giving their best. Our priority is to bring the rival association together and sort out all differences. We also propose to conduct the Asian championship, involving Malaysia, Singapore and Middle East countries, in a couple of years,” said Mr. Ponnuswami. Next in his priority list is the rule changes. “I want to make it more competitive. We need to give the referees more powers to tackle issues and thus bring about some discipline among the players. It may be minor changes but it certainly can make a big impact in avoiding conflicts,” he said. His big dream is to see that ball badminton gets the kind of status that other games enjoy at the moment.

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