(Women on Top in Tech is a series about Women Founders, CEOs, and Leaders in technology. It aims to amplify and bring to the fore diversity in leadership in technology.)
Here is my interview with Anupama Vjai, General Manager & Director for Monitoring Operations of Schneider Electric India Private Ltd. Previously, she worked as a Program Manager at Microsoft Services.
What makes you do what you do?
I have an inherent need to be intellectually stimulated and to create. I get my energy to do all other things from this.
How did you rise in the industry you are in?
I did well and full commitment what I did without any planning and strategy around how I should rise in the industry
Why did you take on this role/start this startup especially since this is perhaps a stretch or challenge for you (or viewed as one since you are not the usual leadership demographics)?
The leadership role I am in now was an excellent opportunity to go beyond my own benchmark – I accepted it because it was priority to the executive management so I knew I would get the support I needed, accepted it because it required me to create something from scratch, build a perspective about it to fuel adoption of its services, build a team and give them direction in ambiguity and volatility. To me, growth is doing well something that has in the past been considered impossible or is surrounded by ambiguity or broader the “VUCA”
Do you have a mentor that you look up to in your industries or did you look for one or how did that work?
I do not have a mentor, I trust my own professional quality of deliverables to win the trust of my organization and just go from there.
How did you make a match if you and how did you end up being mentored by him?
Each of my promoting managers has been my mentors – I have relied on their improvement feedback for as a constructive way to develop my skills and hone my abilities.
Now as a leader how do you spot, develop, keep, grow and support your talent?
For me right attitude and commitment are the only expectation from my talent – once I spot that I leverage coaching techniques and great feedback to move them to high-performance zone. I create the visibility for them with my senior management and create a space for them to excel beyond the goals set.
Do you consciously or unconsciously support diversity and why?
Somehow I only look out for attitude and competence and support high-performance culture and meritocracy – however, I do staunchly believe that diversity is important for well-rounded organization growth and differentiation.
What is your take on what it takes to be a great leader in your industry and as a general rule of thumb?
A balanced focus on current delivery and a keen eye on the technology changes to round the corner to add value to stakeholders.
Advice for others?
To learn more about Schneider Electric India Private Ltd, please see http://www.schneider-electric.co.in.
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