He still remembers taking the National Talent Search Examination (NTSE) and ended up finishing the district summit (rather unexpectedly, he added). Natarajan’s father, who was a part-time schoolteacher and farmer, was delighted by the evidence of his son’s first major academic achievement. Natarajan then moved to a nearby town for her upper secondary education.
An MBA holder from IIM Ahmedabad, recalls: “At the time, I didn’t even know IIM until I met one of our family friends on a visit. at my sister’s residence during my university studies. There weren’t many training courses for MBA preparation – one of them was mainly based on natural abilities and the mind! It was indeed a pleasant surprise when I received the letter of admission.
“I am still deeply attached to my roots and visit my hometown several times a year,” he added.
Now a senior business executive in a BPM company, his first job was in consumer marketing – at Ciba Geigy (now renamed Novartis & Syngenta).
The experience of her first job left a very deep and positive impression on her. “In fact, I’m still in contact with the person who recruited me out of business school for my first job.
According to Natarajan, all of her roles spanning more than two decades involved significant management of organizational change.
“Needless to say, organizations take the time to adapt and embrace change! You have to combine several things – reasoned arguments, influencing people, game theory, etc. The initially stated intention or vision is often diluted during the transformation process with several trade-offs to meet the expectations and preferences of stakeholders. The change agent needs to be very patient and not all changes will be successful, ”Natarajan said.
Speaking about his greatest achievements in his career, Natarajan says he has always been “the chosen one” when trying to work with a new idea or concept, which is usually far from the core business of the organization! “I was instrumental in building a business consulting organization in a large IT company, selling the concept internally and externally, and quickly expanding it to a $ 500 million company with a very good brand image. “
The next challenge was to successfully launch a ‘holistic advisory service delivery model’, whereas the norm was to view consulting as a ‘customer side’ activity.
Likewise, in his current role he worked in the technology sector of a predominantly BPM organization, and in the process the company also makes its core BPM services technology enabled.
Natarajan believes in always going with the flow and seeing where it takes you. “I have never been too overwhelmed by positive or negative emotions.”
Speaking about what he plans to do next in his life, he says age is just a number. He plans to continue his professional career for many years – as an employee for a while and then as a mentor to start-ups and companies.
Words of wisdom for future technology leaders
Natarajan believes the pace of technological change is so rapid that even before we climb the curve, another trend has set in. It’s almost like we have to keep running to be in the same place! It is therefore imperative to keep abreast of the latest technological trends.
“But technology is a necessary but not sufficient condition to be a successful IT leader. There are a few other skills such as domain knowledge, people management, organizational change management, and financial acumen to be successful as an IT leader. It’s about solving business problems and generating revenue – IT isn’t just about delivering projects, ”he said.
The role of a CIO is no longer just to manage cost centers and complete projects on time. “I keep saying that the next generation CIO should be a Zen master capable of wearing a corporate hat with his technology and project management skills. I would say that the role of the CIO in an organization should be managed like a corporate NLP, clearly quantifying the benefits. The most sophisticated CIOs are now starting to monetize their intellectual property assets, ”added Natarajan.