Praveen Kenneth

By Anant Rangaswami
Likes 52
Comments 18
Praveen Kenneth
The Man Who Pretends To Talk

One day, Praveen Kenneth will let the world in on his big secret: the recipe for his secret sauce.

I’ve not known Praveen Kenneth for ages. I had my first serious conversation with him in 2007, when I went over to his office to understand what it was about Law & Kenneth that caused clients to a) work with the agency for many years and b) to heap praise on Praveen, the person.

Since then, I’ve had tens of lunches with him and many drinking evenings. For the most part of these meetings, Praveen listens. It took me some time to figure that out. He says a few words here and there, but that’s to keep up the pretence of a conversation.

When he listens, he absorbs. He sucks it in like a sponge, almost able to repeat all that you said verbatim.

I’ve had many of these conversations. On some occasions, I’ve made suggestions or offered some advice. Quite often, I’m pleasantly surprised to see, in a few days, evidence of my suggestion being acted upon.’

That’s his secret sauce. Listening.

He listens to his colleagues. He listens to his well-wishers. He listens to his critics.

Most importantly, he listens to his clients. He hears every word that they have to say – and he remembers every word that he has heard.

Then he acts on all that he has heard, remembered and absorbed.

That’s his secret sauce.

In a world where everyone wants to talk, Praveen wants to listen and to do.

And that comes as a pleasant surprise to all, because we’re not used to quality ‘listeners’.

To anyone, being listened to is the greatest acknowledgement of existence and a great demonstration of respect.

Real respect, not the fawning and sucking up to that people attempt to disguise and pass of as respect.

To clients, the listening translates into work that is on brief, to work that is delivered on time, to Praveen being punctual to a fault, to complaints being addressed in a hurry and commitments that are honoured.

That’s the secret sauce. The secret sauce that saw Praveen grow Law & Kenneth into one of the top ten Indian advertising agencies (despite whatever the Brand Equity Reckoner might say), that saw the spectacular deal between Publicis Groupe and Law & Kenneth and that sees an enviable roster of satisfied clients – and loyal colleagues.

Editor, CNBC-TV18
Comments (18)
Rajan Sarmalkar Raju Sarmalkar (Guest) I am very proud of being Pravin has conquered the world of advertising. What an apt title "The man who pretend to talk" All the best...
21 Mar 2017 Reply
radhika vyas (Guest) there are rainmakers and cyclone creators... the way praveen has grown his empire is akin to a cloudburst
15 Dec 2015 Reply
Anthony Koshy (Guest) He is such a hard worker and a down to earth person.
10 Dec 2015 Reply
Vartika Das (Guest) Praveen Kenneth seems to have an undying bond with Publicis. He always ends up there no matter where he was before. :) Lucky Publicis. 
09 Dec 2015 Reply
Ankita Gosh (Guest) This article truly encapsulates Praveen Kenneth!
08 Dec 2015 Reply
Survi Mohan (Guest) L&K has grown so much in just a few short years. It remarkable. 
07 Dec 2015 Reply
Tommy Matthew (Guest) This article definitely makes me want to be a better listener. It seems like a stepping stone towards success.
04 Dec 2015 Reply
Debjyoti Jadhav (Guest) He is legendary. A true inspiration.
04 Dec 2015 Reply
Shweta Bhatt (Guest) His dynamic nature is like a breath of fresh air, especially in this industry.
03 Dec 2015 Reply
Akhil Dev (Guest) Praveen Kenneth's listening skills have become one of his biggest asset
03 Dec 2015 Reply
Manpreet Kaur (Guest) Praveen Kenneth's work ethic is very interesting. Even his silence speaks volumes.
03 Dec 2015 Reply
Ajay Singhania (Guest) Praveen Kenneth has taken L&K to great heights in few short years. His hard work and dedication has definitely paid off.
02 Dec 2015 Reply
Rachna Changra (Guest) Praveen Kenneth knows how to exploit his resources to the maximum. He knows what works best, and his gift of being a great listener is one of his biggest asset.
02 Dec 2015 Reply
Karan Shekawat (Guest) From what little I have heard about Praveen Kenneth, he is a doer. He believes in getting things done rather than procrastinating.
02 Dec 2015 Reply
Vanishri Garodia (Guest) Praveen Kenneth became the CEO of Publicis at 29. The man must be damn good to achieve that feat. I guess good
02 Dec 2015 Reply
Wendell Sharma (Guest) "To anyone, being listened to is the greatest acknowledgement of existence and a great demonstration of respect"- such a true statement. The happiness one gets just from being listened to, is at par with being appreciated for your job. Sometimes even more.
02 Dec 2015 Reply
Alankara Shekar (Guest) I want Praveen Kenneth's secret sauce. That is indeed the secret to success too. Listening.. makes all the change.
02 Dec 2015 Reply
Shruti Venkat (Guest) The man who pretends to listen! What an apt title for Praveen Kenneth.
02 Dec 2015 Reply

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