In the orientation programme for the new post-graduate students of the MBA programme, IIM, Kozhikode invited Mr. Rajeev Baid, MD of Evergreen Tea Group, Chai Chun, and Okayti Tea Estate, where he shared his incredible story of building a business to reckon within the tea industry.
Rajeev Baid, MD, Evergreen Tea Group, shares his story with the newly admitted MBA students at IIM, Kozhikode
“I told the story that I was able to recollect but what was really enthralling was their genuine questions regarding my journey. It made me reflect on things that I had forgotten over the years. It gave me a perspective that I had lost,” Mr. Baid said.
The institution organizes the “Orientation Programme” for the newly admitted MBA students every year to give them the right kind of motivation before they begin their strict schedule of studying organizational behavior, marketing, principles of management, etc. Speakers at the orientation programme included trailblazers in the world of business, and those who are setting a new trend or have reached the highest echelons in the industry.
The programme was not like any other orientation programme. The brightest minds from across the nation who want to make their mark in the business world were present. It was a rejuvenating session where Mr. Baid shared the nuances of his journey of becoming the most successful tea entrepreneur from the region starting from a mere tea hawker at the railway stations. The participants were receptive with a willing mind to listen to the anecdotes full of life lessons.
IIM, Kozhikode is an autonomous public business school in Calicut, Kerala. The Institute was set up in 1996 by the Government of India in collaboration with the State Government of Kerala. It is the 5th IIM in India and is famous for delivering the best education and producing top-class Managers and Entrepreneurs. With its alumni in the top tiers of multinational businesses, IIM Kozhikode is shaping the business arena of the nation.
Mr. Baid had quite a humble start in the tea industry. Born to a modest family, he started hawking CTC teas to the tea stall owners of Kishanganj railway station and bus stop at the age of 14. While still in school, he was aware that his father was having difficulty taking care of the family with nine children. He shared about his struggling days in childhood and how he has become strong in life with all those experiences.
When Bihar’s first tea factory was set up, Mr. Baid knew where he needed to be. He worked as a salesman for the tea produced in the first-ever tea factory in Bihar for several years till he was made one of the working partners for his exceptional salesmanship. “This was a turning point for me, being a partner strengthened me to ask for more from life and I have never looked back,” – he added.
“Dreaming is one thing and working every day to achieve those dreams is another. Being successful comes with its consequences,” Mr. Baid said that he has never taken a Sunday as a holiday, every waking hour is a working hour. And today, he is the most revered entrepreneur in the tea industry with a business worth crores.
At the end of his speech, he re-iterated in the houseful auditorium that entrepreneurship is the only promising avenue today for the youth to hone their skills and find who they really are.