I derive my identify from how I live, over what I do and where.
Here, you will find out how my days unfold, and not where I graduated from. For that, there is always Linkedin.
I hold contradictions within me. I love the quiet life. I also love having clear goals and chasing them down.
I love birdsong, the outdoors, unhurried meals and afternoon strolls among old trees. I also love pushing clients and friends to go after audacious targets and jumping in to help.
I love the gentle awareness of opposing forces of holding a Yoga asana. I also love the resilience-building rigour and pain of endurance sports.
I love working on multiple unrelated projects across my areas of competence. I also love to focus on one complex problem till it’s solved.
I love routines because they soothe. I also love a good “throw away the playbook and get all in” crisis that tests first principles and coded value systems.
I love time-nurtured relationships. I also love new connections.
I love puttering about in the labyrinths of the mind. I also love discovering beauty. I am learning to love detachment.
I love the whimsy of flutes and harps in the background while working. I also love the silence needed for imagination.
I love meditating without counting minutes. I also love talking people through complex situations (as long as there is progress).
Where is the backstory, you say? Here goes:
My first professional milestone was at age 16. After 10 years of rigour to morph into a Bharatanatyam dancer, my debut performance generated enough press for interest from the entertainment business. With the lucky steadfastness of a teen brought up in a library, I walked away from that space, sanity intact, in pursuit of a conventional career. I closed the chapter on that first love of my life, dance, by age 24.
Chased up an undergrad in Psychology, Political Science and English with an MBA and then Pensioner’s Paradise called with the lure of an authentic life.
My second work path started in 2000 when I got an HR Generalist role at a vibrant company in a sunrise industry. I saw incredible personal and professional growth here. In addition to hobnobbing with some great minds in what was then an intimate tech industry, across the planet, I also experienced instances that are now the stuff of legend in memoirs of industry captains.
In parallel, I landed in a very inclusive neighbourhood, a haven for artists and all kinds of others. So I fit right in. I was bumping into jazz legends and local rock band legends and classical singer and dancer legends on a near daily basis. This, despite working at a job for 15 hours on average, that gave me very little time at home.
I made truly supportive friends, entertained my brother’s and my friends at home, and grew rapidly in my career. To get all of these in the first 4 years of work life was a massive stroke of good luck.
After 7 years of corporate gigs, I quit at the turn of my 30th birthday to take stock of life. This is where my other parallel work milestone of facilitation and coaching kicked in.
For the past dozen years, I have done work that has speaks to my values. It means I have a preference for young companies, intentionally small ones and companies that have a similar DNA to mine. I have traded off the bags of money in a conventional corporate have been worth it in spades. My work is to help businesses grow their people side of things. Sometimes, this is via coaching, other times, via facilitation, and yet other times, with more involved hands-on work. I am open to all of these.
With a ringside seat to the unfolding of India Inc., there are few occurrences in the last two plus decades that I have not experienced, been impacted by and learnt lessons from. When I hung out my consulting shingle, those experiences and lessons have been invaluable. Articulating these in my own style has got me invitations to write in my own style, which I do, when called upon to do so. That’s yet another branch off on my work paths.
Through these journeys, books have been my closest friends. From pre-internet times, these has been no question unanswered thanks to my trusty tomes; I was extremely fortunate to grow up within walking distance of and unusual access to one of the largest libraries in the country. Arts, headlining with music, possibly, has been the other big supportive track in life.
All in all, I am very aware of the amount of luck holding together this charmed life.