What is takes to be the Chairman or CEO of one of the Giant Global Enterprise. Is it being born with a silver spoon, schooling from an elite English medium school, the IIT- IIM tag, graduation from an Ivy League College like a Harvard Degree? The answer is simply No and the Tata Sons newly appointed Chairman Natarajan Chandrasekaran (‘Chandra’) has proved it time and again.
N. Chandrasekaran belongs to a Tamil family with agricultural background and underwent his schooling from Tamil medium Government school. He obtained B.Sc. (Bachelor of Science) degree in applied Sciences from Coimbatore Institute of Technology,Coimbatore and completed his MCA (Masters of Computer Application) from Regional Engineering College, Trichy (now National Institute of Technology, Tiruchirappalli) and from there started his career as the Tata Consultancy Services Intern in 1987. Not born in an elite family, no English medium school, no Engineering degree, no IIT/ IIM experience, no Ivy League College and yet this man became one of the youngest CEOs and MD of TCS (a leading global IT solution and consulting firm) just in 22 years of his career life in October,2009. Chandrasekaran was responsible for formulating and executing the TCS’s global strategy and had been at helm of several key strategic transitions at TCS since 2002 when he took over the role as head of global sales. Prior to CEO, he was COO and executive director of TCS. India’s central bank, the Reserve Bank of India appointed him as director on its board in 2016.
Chandra is a Tata Lifer as he has worked for Tata Group since the inception of his career. It takes someone a lot to have great belief in the spirit, vision and mission of an organization to be a part of it for lifetime. This man has nurtured it like his own child or enterprise. He was above average performer in academics who put his mind and heart into his duty. He has displayed qualities of uttermost capabilities, will, determination, hard work, passion, loyalty throughout the various roles and responsibilities he has undertaken in the capacity of different positions he held. His stand out quality is commitment but the quality that made him stand out is that he believed in himself. This quality is the one which today’s youngsters need in the first place to get started. He is the man of real inspiration especially to all those who thinks that these IT Giants have nothing for them and also who consider that they can’t make it big.
Ever wondered what the technopreneur Chandra, known for his ability to make big bets on new technology, use to do other than the professional work. He is an avid photographer, the classical music aficionado, a passionate marathoner and loves his daily run to improve his fitness levels. He completed his fastest marathon or personal record (PR) at TCS New York City Marathon (2014) with a finishing time of 5 hr. 00 min 52 sec. He is a man with great professional instinct and enthusiasm to lead a good and healthy life. These traits inspire everyone to keep going in life. When asked in one of the interviews what he has to say regarding the work life balance. He pointed out that he doesn’t believe in this concept and doesn’t even keep professional and personal life separate. Instead he uses to make a single list that he follows. A single priority list and he keeps it short. We can now figure out how he is able to do all this in a day and that too without fail and with such perfection.
Under his leadership, TCS generated consolidated revenues of US $16.5 billion and became the India’s largest and top IT Giant. . He believes a strong team is one which can help an organization to achieve what it wants and that’s where he has been able to implement that successfully owing to his remarkable leadership skills. TCS has immensely contributed to corporate sustainability under his ambit. He has been awarded with various awards and recognition in the business community. He has been voted as the ‘Best CEO’ for the fifth consecutive year by the Institutional Investor’s 2015 Annual All-Asia Executive Team rankings.
The $116 bn Tata Sons Group has a lot of expectations from him especially after the recent tumultuous environment within the board. It is not at all going to be a cake-walk for him but after being unanimously appointed as Chairman, it is believed that he will deliver excellent value as always while facing the new challenges of managing steel, telecom and motors businesses that form the group’s spine.
Every man and woman must take an inspiration from him to kick start his/her career ahead. One needs not to be successful to start with something new and great. One needs to start to be successful. It’s never too late to start and to learn. Don’t wait for an opportunity; create one for you. Your will and passion is the key to the success.