1. L&T’s top man A M Naik made 7 spelling mistakes in his job application form 55 years ago

L&T’s top man A M Naik made 7 spelling mistakes in his job application form 55 years ago

Anil Manibhai Naik, the 76 year old Chairman of Larsen and Toubro who has spent more than 55 years in the company, rising from the ranks of an entry level engineering graduate to head the company for more than 18 years, says that he had made seven spelling mistakes in his L&T job application form.

By: | Updated: September 21, 2017 4:19 PM
“I had seven spelling mistakes in the application form,” AM Naik said in conversation with a TV channel. (Image:Reuters)

Anil Manibhai Naik, the 76 year old Chairman of Larsen and Toubro who has spent more than 55 years in the company, rising from the ranks of an entry level engineering graduate to head the company for more than 18 years, says that he had made seven spelling mistakes in his L&T job application form. In an interview to CNBC TV18, AM Naik said that he couldn’t speak coherently in the interview.  “Even in the interview, I could not speak well. The manager told me, don’t you think your English could be better? I said ‘yes’, because I had seven spelling mistakes in the application form,” AM Naik said in conversation with the channel.

The Chairman who is set to hang his boots in October, said that he wasn’t called for the L&T interview, as he’s not an IITian.  Sharing the details he said, “At that time, L&T took people only from IIT. They did not call me for the interview. I went to Nester Boiler, and after 18 months,my experience was so appropriate to what L&T wanted to do, so I got the job.”  AM Naik studied in a village and says that he was intimidated after coming to Bombay, as he wasn’t fluent in English. In the candid conversation, the veteran said, “I came from a village,  studied in vernacular language. My father told me to go to Vallabh Vidyanagar college. In my college even though, 25% of the people were not from Gujarat, people spoke Gujarati. So, when  came to Bombay, I had a very tough time to meet and talk to people. In such kind of environment, how will I survive?”

The interview had a deep impact on Mr Naik, as his personnel manager had told him to improve his fluency in the language. “So, I took it to heart. I bought dictionary, and I bought cassettes. That time there were no DVDs or CDs,” he said.  It was a difficult task for AM Naik, as he took nearly 4 years to come to terms with the language.

Sharing his struggles, AM Naik recalled, “I started playing the cassettes and started hearing the pronunciation and so on. Then correlated that with (my) thought process. I would stand in front of the mirror and start talking. Then I would read well written sentences from the dictionary, because the spelling has to be correct. I took me 3-4 years to come to terms with how I could deal.” Pointing out how he managed the first 3-4 years, AM Naik quipped, “I got away with it, as I was in the shop floor managing workers and unions.”

  1. Karunakar N
    Sep 21, 2017 at 2:20 pm
    inspiring story
    Reply
    1. P
      Param
      Sep 21, 2017 at 11:57 am
      Why can't people just agree that he is one fine Leader India produced in last Century I am so proud of Mr Naik. May we have more and more Naiks in this country.
      Reply
      1. M
        Mani
        Sep 21, 2017 at 6:48 am
        Guess auto spell corrections like in windows or iOS was not invented then. Today’s engineers are no better. But the final draft will be much better because of the spell checking softwares.
        Reply
        1. V
          vasuv
          Sep 21, 2017 at 4:32 am
          I do not believe it as he must have joined L T in 1962 and at that time there were no cassettes. Cassettes came only in the 70s. He must have improved his English by referring to dictionaries. I also had similar problem when starting as I studied in Hindi medium
          Reply
          1. R
            Raj
            Sep 21, 2017 at 12:00 am
            Why should someone spend 55 years in a company and not allow other deserving leaders to succeed to take it into the future.
            Reply
            1. D
              Daddy
              Sep 21, 2017 at 8:31 am
              Because like you exist in this world....you dumb
              Reply
              1. G
                Gtaman
                Sep 21, 2017 at 10:43 am
                He joined as normal worker 55 years ago. Management post came long after. Stupid
                Reply
                1. R
                  R Varadarajan
                  Sep 21, 2017 at 8:57 pm
                  Why can't you reply without these expletives? Please give respect when you reply.
              2. V
                Vinay
                Sep 20, 2017 at 11:23 pm
                What AM Naik hides is the fact that he got propped up by the erstwhile Chairman NM Desai. Naik did not have to work hard as much as others, to rise to the top He was just an executive assistant to Desai.
                Reply
                1. J
                  Jay
                  Sep 20, 2017 at 10:48 pm
                  Getting the JOB DONE WELL LIKE, Mr NAIK DID is the KEY. DO NO WORRY ABOUT THE ENGLISH. LEARN FROM THE CHINESE, JAPANESE, TAIWANESE, KOREANS
                  Reply
                  1. R
                    Raj gopal
                    Sep 20, 2017 at 10:23 pm
                    He is a very lucky man! Reinstated the feeling that luck plays a very important role no matter how much you plan and try in life. If it’s not in your stars, will not happen.
                    Reply
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