Witnessing the Transformation of Nielsen’s Business in Asia

Sharang is the Managing Director of Nielsen’s Business in Sri Lanka. Since joining Nielsen in 2001, Sharang has helped build stronger relationships with our clients and along the way has seen many opportunities for his own professional growth.

My contemporaries from B School still ask me if I plan to retire at Nielsen. My simple answer to them has always been: “What is the need of applying to another company if my current employer is taking care of my growth desires, and my work gets more interesting with every passing year?”

My affair with Nielsen (or ORG-MARG, the name it was known by in India) started with just a bit of flirting, but the love grew over time, and the honeymoon doesn’t seem to be ending soon, even after 16 years of being in a relationship. When I walked into the office in Mumbai in 2001 for the first time, I didn’t think that this would be the only company I would work for over the next couple of decades. But Nielsen has become my family.

As Nielsen has grown over the last decade, so have I. I have been fortunate to witness the company go through a lot of transformation, from name changes to culture changes. Every change has come with a strategic objective, and Nielsen in return, has given the opportunity to its talent to grow along the way. Change of leadership brought change in the way we work, but it also opened new roles and responsibilities to take on. What has stayed the same is my focus on our clients. Whether it’s servicing the emerging modern retail sector in India or being a part of business process improvement, my work has helped me develop my client centricity, product orientation and leadership skills.

Nielsen also allowed me travel across the world and work in exciting cultures and global growth engines, like China and Vietnam. Taking on the role of a Client Business Partner in 2012 offered a ‘board room’ view of how our clients use research data and forge stronger relationships for mutual benefits.

Throughout my career, I’ve also worked on projects where I was providing measurement coverage in growing economies and managing profitable growth. I have come a long way, guided all along by our values and client focus. However, it hasn’t always been smooth sailing. There have been occasions when things have not worked out as planned, but the company’s leadership has trusted me to bounce back with learning to leverage.

I am glad Nielsen is evolving to make sure its measurement tools remain relevant in today’s dynamic world. Being the leader in market measurement, it’s our obligation to ensure that market research doesn’t die as some prophecies suggest it will. It can be a challenge sometimes to keep pace, but that’s part of the fun about working at Nielsen.