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7 Questions with Neeti Adish Chauhan
7 Questions with Neeti Adish Chauhan
Name: Neeti Adish Chauhan
Current title: Director & COO
Current organisation: MINDCo Consulting Group (MCG)
1. What have you found most challenging as a leader of a small or medium enterprise?
Being the Executive at an organisation, the most challenging aspect I have come across is to keep the strategic direction of the organisation aligned with changing market scenario. Given the fast-paced change in today’s world which his transforming rapidly, it is imperative that executives think proactively to constantly adapt to thechanging context in which they operate.
2. How did you become a leader of an SME? Can you please briefly tell the story?
Our company was founded in 2011 and with almost a decade under its belt, MCG has been able to create a global presence with its offices and associate offices in different countries. I have been associated with MCG as Director since 2014, and recently started playing an executive role when the company begun expanding rapidly. We were suddenly working across multiple countries providing services to our clients globally.
3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?
I start my day with a cup of tea and hitting the gym. Thereafter, I start my work by spending first few minutes connecting with my team,discussing priorities, challenges, and also commending the great work that they do each day. Rest of the day is mostly packed with meetings and other activities. I like to spend my evenings with my family, or on certain days, connecting with industry professionals. At the end of the day, before I hit the bed, I spend 15-20mins on the reading and about 15 mins on meditation.
4. What's the most recent significant leadership lesson you've learned?
I believe that your success as a leader hinges on your team’s success. That’s why my focus is always people-first. I know if my team is happy, they will strive to make our customers happy. At MCG, we have developed a 3HModel (i.e. Head, Heart, & Hands Model) of Talent Management. The aim of this model is to develop tailored plans for each employee-groups to align their skills, desires, and actions for delivering successful outcomes. I have adopted this model to motivate and engage my team, and have seen how magically it works.
5. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?
I can’t really give credit to one particular book that had a profound impact on my leadership. I am an avid reader and I like to read number of books, articles, journals, opinions, and personal stories of people, all of which has shaped up my leadership style. I strongly believe that we can learn from anyone and anything – you can learn a success lesson even from a failure story. I derive leadership lessons imbibing through thoughts, experiences, perspectives, observationsof not just famous leaders, but also from simple people demonstrating leadership in their everyday life. I also feel that being a mother has further influenced my leadership style, making it more empathetic and inclusive, while being assertive at the same time.
6. How do you build leadership capacity in an SME?
SMEs are the best places to build leadership capacity as very few large organisations offer comparable opportunities for autonomy and multi-functional exposure. SMEs need more leaders than a large-sized organisation as to propel an SME to the next level of growth, more leaders are required within the organisation. We build leadership capacity by engaging the existing talent within the organisation, and by scouting for talent from the outside.
7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader of an SME so far?
MCG’s tagline is ‘think unconventional’ and we have demonstrated that not just in spirit, but also in our actions time and again. We have taken approaches and decisions which are considered ‘unconventional’ at a time. However, our proactive and break-the-norm attitude is what has kept as ahead of our competitors.
For example, a few years ago, MCG went fully remote, with all our team members working from home. This was a very different approach and was also doubted by a few. In retrospection, we believe that COVID-19 had minimal impact on our work delivery as we were already accustomed and equipped to manage remote-work.
Our well-established and well-tested systems for Workforce Planning, Workflow Management, Competency and Skills Mapping, Performance Management, KPIs, and Talent Management have not only enabled us in managing our operations effectively, but they also gives an extra-edge when we provide business advisory and HR consulting services to our clients.
We have Change Management consulting expertise and extensiveexperience in it to ascertain that it is not the technology-implementation that makes an organisation effective and efficient, but how to execute and sustain processes around it is the key.