This week on #septemberspotlight, We’d like to share coach Vishakha’s interesting thoughts and advice for individuals. She is currently working at Tata Consultancy Services. She is a veteran of 11+ years in the industry. Learners are delighted to be mentored by her, as her diverse experiences reinforce her zeal and push to strive towards excellence.

We’re proud to have her as our career coach!

Read the conservation with coach Vishakha around how to live a balanced life, what keeps her going and her advice.

BI: Things you love the most about your job?

VV: No two days are alike, really. And also, no one stops me from taking up any initiatives I feel will add value to me, my team and my company. I have a pretty awesome set of colleagues and a boss who is invested in my growth as well!

BI: Your favorite books/films/documentaries

VV: I've taken to biographies lately... Open is a great book even if you're not much of a reader. Apart from that I'm reading a great book called Thinking, Fast and Slow on how people think and make judgments.

BI: Who is your mentor and the best piece of advice given by her/him?

VV: I've been fortunate to have a number of seniors who have mentored me but one mentor I keep going back to is Harshavardhan S - the best advice he's given me yet is don't let anyone get you to believe you can't have it all when you believe you can. And set your goal for what you want to do by 35, and go do that.

BI: What dreams and goals inspired you to succeed?

VV: My dreams and goals keep changing but personal growth in a horizontal rather than a conventional vertical manner excites me. I like to try things that I've never done before - keep pushing myself out of my comfort zone. I guess that's what keeps me going.

BI: How does it feels to be a working women in the business world?

VV: Feels fantastic - it's like there's always something different to look forward to - no monotony! If you get bored of the routine at home, you're going to have work and if you have a day when you're probably too stressed at work then routine at home is refreshingly stable to keep you rooted.

BI: How do you relieve stress?

VV: Recently I have started playing Board Games very regularly.. that's an amazing way to catch up with friends and family and relieve stress (or counter it with intense rounds of negotiation in games of Catan!)

BI: What do thing should change in the Industry you're working in?

VV: Largely the Indian industry is characterised by extremely long work hours and as technology takes center stage in most businesses the days are just getting longer. This needs to change... People need to realize that for innovation to happen, one cannot push oneself towards burnout and balancing long hours in front of the desk /screen with constructive leisure is important.

BI: What are the 3-5 Leadership Principles that you have discovered and executed that have contributed to your success?

VV:

1. It's important to prioritize personal goals and not just focus on the best career decisions because life is not just about work.

2. Discipline in learning new skills and gaining new experience is necessary to avoid becoming irrelevant. This has to be a personal goal you set for yourself at work.

3. Go out, talk to people, don't be afraid to voice your views... Because otherwise you won't be true to your job. But with humility.

4. Trust your team to deliver on the task you assign to them - your expectations push them to ensure that they meet their goals if you're a leader they don't want to let down.

BI: What do you do to live a balanced life?

VV: I try to stick to working hours (at times they are long hours but if they're in office, that's still better than bringing work back home)

BI: How would you describe your personal style?

VV: Passionate and energetic.. I'm pretty passionate about the things I do or I don't like to do them at all.. and somehow I guess that's also the source of my vast reserves of energy that everyone seems to notice!

BI: What advice you would give to larger group of people?

VV: Hear all the advice you get.. but pick only that which you believe works for you. Everyone has their own individual style they need to preserve and cherish :)