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Leadership Series - Seven Habits of highly successful IT Leaders - Connect 1


Presented by Women Who Code Hyderabad Speaker: Saraswathi Narayanan, Dr Renu Lata Rajani & Indira Munjuluri Topic: Seven Habits of highly successful IT Leaders
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Sure so welcome Mindra to this session while I give you all that context about Women Who quote for the participants and for you but the first thing is a pleasure in meeting an old colleague right? You are a leader I always looked up to in my earlier organization so in that sense it's really a pleasure to be connected with you on some topic again today so that definitely brings a smile onto my face too so with that I think I'll get started with this session so Women Who Code. As I was mentioning. Is a not for profit organization which has this mission to inspire more and more women to take up technology careers and then excel in them we can keep moving to the next slide please like every other organization I think there is a lot of focus on diversity and looking at how diverse women are better represented as engineers and as tech leaders definitely would like to look up to more role models like you to make this happen we can move to the next slide so yeah. Women Who Code is a very inclusive community and then there is a code of conduct that really binds us together to be very inclusive and then not discriminate against any aspect of multiple things that we definitely see going on while we don't want to get into that for discrimination so move on to the next slide. So this is the page I know you and I struggled through this a bit but this is the page to sign up for the Women Who Quote Chapter Hyderabad and this is for all participants please do sign up so that you don't miss out on similar exciting events on the Meetup page yeah and these are some of the social media handles for us and I also want to call out that I know a bunch of you may also be interested in volunteering so you can always volunteer through the Slack channel on the Meetup page and there is definitely a lot of work to do to ensure that we're able to create the right outcomes for a larger community so we'll talk about that in a bit but definitely we'll have a lot of opportunities to volunteer so yeah. That's me and Reno. The co directors for Hyderabad chapter and I really want to take a moment to thank Reyno too I think she has done quite a bit in the last several months to ensure that this chapter has multiple events and has been instrumental in growing the subscription base quite a bit. Thanks. So with that I would like to introduce Indira to all of you today like I said. She's a leader that I definitely looked up to in my earlier organization she spent 33 years in the industry and I mean the role that she's currently holding is the global It delivery head for Novarter's Drug Development and she's based out of Hyderabad and she has played several stints across different organizations and really a lot to learn from her. And I also want to give you some context about having a leadership conversation today, right? So over the last several months we have brought in varied topics which have been technical and we've talked about low code, no code, we've talked about cloud containerization but as we went through this there is also this aspect about leadership, right? And a lot to learn from role models in the industry. So with that in mind, we started this series on Seven Habits, right? So that's the most way of understanding maybe, but I think it's also very effective. So Seven Habits of highly successful It Leaders is a series that we want to bring to all of you and who better than Indira to start with on this journey, right? So we definitely want to understand more from Indira as to what makes us successful and then bring out all those seven habits that she thinks make a difference. And we also look at some other general questions in terms of how do we navigate, learn from her career, success story, etc. And hit on a couple of fun questions maybe towards the end. So that's in short the agenda. So is there anything else you want to say first and then maybe we can get started. Thanks very much and it's been equally as much a pleasure that we've got connected again. I know that we were good colleagues in my past company and both of us were at the same company at that time so I'm actually grateful that you thought of me at such an occasion and you've given me this opportunity so I'm really happy to be part of this forum. Now it occurs to me that we may have worked together as well. I used to be in Pakistan house Team during 2004 five. Yeah, it's a small world. Yeah, sure is it a why don't we get started? Sorry, you were saying something? No, I was just saying it's a small world and we are happy to meet and we can connect later too. So I know when we talk about leadership and the bunch of things that we have to do on a daily basis, mail sometimes becomes a distraction too. Right? Now what has been your secrets? Also? We'll start with that. I know you spoke a lot about it as a best practice but maybe you can get started with that. Yeah, sure. It's kind of weird that we are starting with something as I don't know whether to call it operational and such a minute detail but if you look back and you see how much time you spend on your email you'd figure that most of your work day actually is spent on email and it's got this terrible characteristic of just piling up even without you knowing. I mean you're off or you don't clear your mail for a day, then you suddenly be popped up with 100, 200, and then that number just keeps galloping and then it slowly becomes like out of hand and within two days you'll hit some 500, 600 miles and you don't know what is buried under that. And then you'll have to really spend maybe an entire evening to clear all of that. So I try to at least bucket my emails into things that are like just read and then maybe those can be read later. Then there are those, of course, which need to be decided upon. And obviously when you're in the leadership position, people might be writing to you for some decisions, for approvals and stuff. And it's very annoying if somebody sits on those sort of meals and doesn't give a good impression to folks who are waiting on that response. Right? So I like to follow one of the lessons that I learned from my manager way back in Septim. And there are emails which are operational nature, which he told me that the SLA should be no less than five should not be more than five minutes. If it comes for an approval, you should approve it. Either you approve or you don't approve. That's fine, that's your decision. But you got to do it like within five minutes. There are others, of course, which you may need to read and go through and then give a decision. But you have to hold yourself with a fair amount of discipline onto these SLAs, otherwise they go out of hand. That's been my experience at least. Very true. Very true, Indira, but very difficult to practice too. And no doubt you mentioned it as a habit. So you must have really mastered the art of clearing the mails. And it's so true, right? I can say so much that you're not able to sleep well if you don't clear your mail from that day, right? So it becomes second nature to you once you start doing it. Sometimes what happens is when they pile up and then you get into another meeting and somebody refers to something, I sent it to you the other day, and then you don't know what's on that meal or what was discussed then. It's extremely embarrassing for you in those situations. You don't want to be in that. So that's the first habit, folks. So don't ever postpone on your meals, just clear it on the same day, I guess. So I think the mid senior track is what we call these sessions, Indira, and these are very useful tips, right? And while hard to practice, I think it is worth inculcating these as habits. So with that, I'll move on to the next one. Indira, I know one term that you hate is resources, right? So whenever we talk about people, referring to them as resources is something that you hate. So do you want to talk more about it? And what is one really good habit that you think has helped in the context of people. Yeah. So in it, what I have seen is that especially when we are, I don't know this whole concept of people as a resource, right? I mean we all refer to them as resources, right? So resources could be like your laptop and your phone as well but then your biggest asset really in it is the knowledge that people bring, the associate brings and very often we get so used to just counting them as just another resource that we forget that there is a human being there, right? And unless you have that human being engaged you're not going to get the best output that you are looking for. So it's very often I find that you just assume that let's say you're budgeting for a project or you're estimating for a project and you'll see some x number of hours and it's just another thing like another calculation but we forget that they're all people and they all have emotions. They have ups. They have downs. They have their own problems whether it's at work or whether it is at home or whatever it is. But ultimately if you don't have them engaged fully you don't get the benefit that you should ideally be getting. So I always try to open every meeting, I mean you are one on one or your group meetings if it's not a large town hall kind of a situation but the smaller meetings that we have I try to spend the first two minutes or a few minutes just talking about something very personal to them just to make them feel part of that meeting. Right, so you firstly of course address everybody by their first name. Then if you are able to recall anything about their families or just inquiring about their health and talk to them about their kids or their parents or whoever. If you're able to recall, that's good. If you're able to recall them by their first names and they instantly feel connected and when they feel connected they are willing to listen and work in the way that is kind of good situation for everybody to be it's more effective ultimately. So I feel that time that you spend is totally worth it even if it means three to five minutes of every meeting but it's totally worth it because in the long run it really benefits ultimately it's all about how much trust you are able to build in a person and how much you're able to build on that trust. Right? So I think at least for me, for any people based organizations, I am sure it will work but it has worked extremely well for me that I try to relate to them at a personal level to the extent possible and. The authenticity and genuineness with which we connect with people definitely helps create that engagement. You're so right there. We saw that so much in the pandemic, right? Yeah, every family had something or the other. Right? I mean, they had some people who are either down or otherwise. Just for them to be able to talk about it and then share those emotions, share those feelings, I think really brought us together, despite the fact that we are so remote and despite the fact that we are in completely different countries across the world, but somehow just bought everybody together in that sense. That's such a great example, Linda. I mean, although it's kind of almost dying down the pandemic itself, but I think the lessons it has taught us will remain with all of us. With that, I move on to the one point that you made earlier. Right? So you said whether you approve, not approve, but do it in five minutes. Right. So that brings to the next aspect of decision making. So what has been your best practice on decision making, which could be called a great habit to cultivate. Yeah, so at least I think by nature. Also, I don't like to procrastinate, right. I mean, for me, it's like you need to take a call. Whether it is right or wrong, only time will tell. And every decision that you make is in the context of that day. And with that background, the context may change four months down the line, six months down the line. And then you may think that, okay, this decision was wrong, but that's fine. In that context, when we took that decision, it was right. That means you just go ahead with it. So I see around me, and I tried that I should not behave like that when I see other people around me who are either worried to take a decision or feel that something may change tomorrow. So why not necessarily do it today or just kind of postpone the decision making? And that doesn't go down well with me. So for me, it's like you make a decision one way or the other, whatever it may be, and stick to it, and it's okay if it turns out to be wrong. You can always make another decision to revise what we did. That is so true. And all that overthinking sometimes will cost us so dearly. Right. Not taking a decision could have so many repercussions that maybe people don't think about. But taking a quick decision, whether right or wrong, I think is the right way to really progress ahead quickly, I guess. Yeah, absolutely. I definitely think that. Firstly, of course, like you said, analysis, paralysis, I really believe in that. I mean, over analysis and you keep on analyzing. You could do this forever and ever and ever, and then there's no decision that's taken, nothing comes out of it. So I would rather take a decision, get all the data, do the research that you need to do, but take that decision, don't let it kind of simmer. And then what are your team supposed to make out of it? If you keep silent on it, that's how I feel. Very true. Couldn't agree more into that. And also you mentioned some time back about how you make that conversation right before a meeting. How do you talk to people and I think that can't happen unless you really listen. So we want to talk about the way you look at listening as a great habit to form. Yeah, absolutely. I think this is something that I must admit, when I began my career I probably did a lot less of. When you start off using, you know, everything kind of or you want to show that, you know, so in any meeting, any topic comes up, you know, even a very little teeny tiny bit, you want to say, no, I kind of got it, I understood it right, but then I realized that I have to develop this. It's an opportunity for me to improve, to really listen much better, which they say this right. So you could listen to fix or you can listen to truly understand listening to fixes, you're already jumping into the solution mode you haven't even heard and understood fully. I would rather now I think I'm practicing and I can't say I'm like super at it yet, but now I know that it's a journey, but I would definitely deliberately try to listen. I seek to understand. I seek to understand before I seek for others to understand me. So which means that I should first get the point that I want to understand what everybody else is saying. And when I say or when I talk about that particular point, then people should understand and get aligned with what I want to say. Right? So unless you do a very active listening, it's not passive listening, but active listening, you just are not there when you need to make a point and you don't get people's attention and you're not speaking the right, you're not giving the right communication if you have not listened properly. So for me, I feel that don't interrupt when somebody is talking, please listen to them completely and then put out your point of view when it is the time. But not listening, jumping to conclusions, not allowing the person to put forth their entire point. That's something that I think I would like to do less of and do more of listening actively. Yes. So true Indira. And when you listen to fix, you are just rehearsing in your mind what you have to say, what you have to respond so that it is strong, et cetera. Right? And that entire focus on listening goes away. So active listening I think is a skill that all of us need to definitely work on continuously, I guess. So with that I'll go on to the next aspect. Right? So when you are leading a large team, whether small or large, the clarity is very, very important. So how do you really ensure the clarity? And do you want to talk about some best practices there. Say that again. Sorry. Clarity of clarity on the action items in the last how do you really ensure that your team understands? I've been part of many meetings where we talk and we talk and we talk and we talk and we talk. No R is gone or 2 hours are gone and then everybody's picked up, the meeting is over. You go back to your desk and you're just doing whatever you want to do or whatever else that you're expected to do. Right? So it makes me acutely uncomfortable. Hence, when I'm in a meeting, I like to end the meeting with a summary of what actions or takeaways as I call it. And I've become so attuned to that now, actually, even at home when we are chatting at the dining table and I said, okay, what are the action items? My children and my husband just roll their eyes at me. What's wrong with you? But it becomes so much of a habit that I just hate to get out of a discussion without having clear action items spelt out and who's doing what when. And this I want people to summarize internalize record and make sure that we follow it up later. For me, this action items thing has become actually a bit of a joke at home. But it is something that I really internalized now and it's so true. And there are sometimes there is this dilbert joke, right, that you set up a meeting, discuss and then you just set up one more meeting as an actionate amount of it could just go on in that spiral, I guess. But unless you really put that and follow through, it becomes very difficult. Do you sometimes feel that. All of us would love the time back and immediately there are 20 things to do. Then you need the time on calendar which you have blocked with 100 other meetings. Indira, you spoke about this practice of really having the clarity on the action items and I'm sure that's how you drive the teams too, right? So then do you also want to talk about delegation then? How does that help in terms of making the leader more accessible and the whole team as a result? Yeah, so I think in my experience, when you start off your career, you are at the point where you're probably doing everything at the most minute level. Right. And as you rise in your career, the skill really is about not you going into every detail and doing it, but to be able to delegate that piece of work to somebody, make them completely accountable for it. Because otherwise what's going to happen is over time, you're going to become the bottleneck. There are other things that if you become the bottleneck because you want to get into every single detail, there are several repercussions out of this because you're not building trust in your team. Your team doesn't think that they don't feel that sense of accountability, they don't feel that sense of ownership. And obviously you as a person automatically will become the bottleneck and you cannot finish the job. So it's absolutely essential for a leader, I feel, to develop that skill of first spelling out the vision, right, for your team to understand what are you going after and what you're going to do. How does that actually spell out as a win win situation for everybody? And then you get that you clearly delegate who picks up what and then make them accountable for the outcomes. That gives the people who are doing the task also feel a sense of ownership and they feel part of this entire journey. And obviously there is a sense of pride when you do something right and you own that, rather than if somebody just come out and say, okay, just do that one bit, not understanding the overall context, not understanding the overall background, that doesn't obviously get out the best in a person. So you really need to have this effective delegation, right, and at the same time making sure that your team is totally accountable for the outcomes. Very true. In fact, I remember one line on delegation, which is when a rocket is launched, you need to shed more and more payload so that the rocket can really go higher. Right? So that's what we need to do. You need to start giving more and more responsibility to the team. And you rightly said you have to give that big picture to them to really understand and then they take that sense of pride in contributing and then delivering. So I think absolutely, for all leaders, delegation is one art, I would say, and we need to definitely own it as we grow. Yeah. And sometimes there is always this delicate sense of balance, right? So when you delegate and you're totally hands off, right, right. Sometimes you end up in a situation where you perhaps really have no clue what is going on and then it also gives you a sense of losing control of what happened and then you try to go back and grab that control back and really to get in and look at every detail and so on. So it's always that balance where you don't lose track, you don't lose control of the outcomes, but you don't have to necessarily be the person who's getting into every single detail. You should know what and where, what are the right questions to ask to get the outcome that you're looking for. And that's the skill one has to practice. Very true. Indira. So with all this good stuff, so much going on and so many things to handle, then how do you really make yourself available for the team? Which I know you really mentioned that this is one key aspect that every leader should look at. Right. So do you want to touch upon that last piece of it? Yeah, what I try to at least communicate. Very often I see that in a team, access to your leader and the comfort to the team members that they have access to the leader is I think quite critical because otherwise one, there are ivory tower leaders, right? They just distance themselves from the team and that in a sense it's like detrimental to both parties in the sense that the person who's the leader and sitting on an ivory tire really has lost touch with reality. They don't know what's going on on the ground so soon. They will become in effect because they just have no clue of what's happening on the ground on the part of the team member. They will lose respect for that lead up because this person anyway doesn't know what is going on. He just sitting somewhere saying something totally irrelevant. He never understands the problem that I'm facing. So that's typically the kind of reaction that you would get. So I think first to remain glued to the ground. Have a year to the ground to really know what are the problems that are being faced by your team. What are the challenges that have been faced if you don't allow that free flow of information with your team and therefore give them that comfort that they can reach out to you in any situation. Give them that confidence that it's not a bad thing for them to come and talk to you regarding their challenges. I think it gives them a very good safety factor. We call these, some of these as psychological safety nets and so on, that they can speak their mind, they can talk about what they need to talk and you help them to the best that you can. So I feel that if you keep an open access. Whether it is on teams. Whether it is on email so I make it a point that in every single meeting that I'm addressing. Even if at a town hall or smaller meeting or wherever it is. I make sure that people. I convey this message to them that I would like to hear from them. I want to hear their feedback and please reach out to me. You can ping me any time and I'll get back to you or you mail me and I get back to you. So I know it takes a little bit more effort to really sort of address all of these concerns, but over time they really help people feel good about coming and having that confidence of coming and talking to you without any negative connotations to that discussion. Back to the same point that you really need to invest in your people because we are in the knowledge industry. Sorry, there was some glitches. Making yourself available to the team easily and making yourself approachable also has this benefit where if there is a big problem. Two people don't hesitate to share it with you then and you get to know upfront rather than that ballooning into something totally unmanageable and you've set it out so right that giving that access and then also conveying in every meeting that you really care about the feedback. You really care about what the other person has to think. The team thinks about. I think that's a very good learning that all leaders have to take away. I think these seven habits I think are maybe the crux for any It leader to be successful. Thank you so much for sharing. I would like to open it up for questions, but before that I thought we would also like to ask you some more questions. Right. So there's so much to learn from you 33 year career and many perspectives that you can share and I thought maybe I'll just go with a couple. Right? So who do you think has had the greatest influence on your career? I think in a sense I think I was very fortunate that I've now worked in this is my third company eleven years in 116 years in the other and I'm now in my 6th year in the third. At least in all my years of learning, which is the first two companies, I think I was fortunate enough to have some excellent managers. I would think that I learned a lot from my managers in my second company, which was satyam. And I think that was also the time where you're kind of moving from a manager and there's a lot of learning from that sense that I saw leadership in practice and I was very fortunate. So I would definitely put it down to my manager in second. That's so nice. There are lot to learn from managers. I guess, but you also have poor lousy managers. But I think I was fortunate that I had some really fantastic managers. Yeah, so true in that since this is an organization that kind of looks at women more. So I just want to ask you, in today's world, do you still think women struggle to prove themselves? What's your perspective? Yeah, I think women do struggle in certain aspects in the sense that I think we put a lot of pressure on ourselves and I think we can do without we put some undue pressure on ourselves that we've got to excel at every single thing that we do, whether it is home, whether it is in office, whether it's in teams. I think it's like a self we just cause undue pressure to ourselves. So I think that's one thing that we should correct. I feel that women should just chill. You're doing a great job, you're educated well, you're moving around in the right team circles companies, you're doing the same kind of job as anybody else. And there is no sense, there is no need for us to pressure ourselves unduly. That's one. Number two, I feel that we are fiercely we have this sense of being perfect at everything that we do. It's. A nice trade to pursue, right. But it's not humanly possible for everybody to be 100% perfect at 100% of the things. So got to kind of balance that out. And I think women struggle a bit in that sort of a balance. So we are either swinging to one end or to the other. And either way, I think women end up losing. That's so true. And that's where, I guess, investing in women, having that sponsorship and that mentoring also plays a role in saying, hey, you're just doing okay. Right? Sometimes that goes a long way in making us come out of some of these habits that are formed in terms of looking at perfection and then looking at everything that we do, being a super woman or whatever. Right. So thanks for sharing that. One last question that I have is, when you hire new leaders, what are the qualities that you look at. New leaders? When I look for hiring, I look for integrity of thought and purpose. I definitely look for integrity of thought and purpose. By the time I would assume that the technical skills that are needed for the job are already checked out before, and obviously that's a prerequisite. So assuming that that is done, I would certainly look for what I call a culture of it when I'm looking at hiring leaders, because they ultimately become the holders of the culture of the company. So we talk a lot about the company's culture, but in practicality, I feel the manager or that particular team leader is really the holder of the culture. And if the company may talk about anything about the culture aspects that they would pursue. But if your manager doesn't exhibit those, it just means that to you that culture doesn't exist. So you cannot relate to a company's culture until the person who you're working with or who's your team lead isn't exhibiting the same cultural values. So I think the values that I definitely look for those or look for instances where they can quote on what they have done to fit in with those values that, let's say, our company stands for. So I think those are what I normally look at, people who are kind of self starters. They're not kind of waiting. So I look for evidences where they can present that what they have picked up on their own. It's not like somebody has to go to them to do it. But they are self starters. How can they prove that to me? Or how can they convince me that that's not there? Yeah, I think. Great pointers. I think technical yes, absolutely, you're right. Would have all been analyzed. But having that culture fit and looking at how somebody can lead, being that self starter is very critical. So thanks for sharing that. And now maybe we'll move to a couple of fun questions, right? So maybe a rapid fire, if you will humor me. Go ahead. Let me see how I do this. I don't know how picked I am, but I will try. So tea or coffee? Indra. You're not going to like this. But noneither. Okay, but what is it then? It's like I'm almost like, you know, this bone Vita or hardlick skin. Did something like that. One cup of burmeter in warning. It is raining. You need pakodas. Okay. Email or conversation? Conversation any day. Hard work or smart work? Smart work. Super. Your favorite book? My favorite book is actually nonfictional. I mean fictional. So I follow Pgboodos a lot. So I really enjoy Pgbooders. Any normal of Pgboos. Yeah. I think it's such a relaxing way right. To unwind with a PG board house. Just need a plate of cajunuts, fried casual nuts. And one last one. What's your ideal weekend? Ideal weekend is to just put my feet up and as I said, watch the rain from my window. And then probably now I have a grandson, so maybe perhaps watching playing. So that would be my ideal weekend. Super. Indra. I think this was great fun. Like I said, the pleasure of meeting an old colleague and having a very good conversation is maybe my ideal working day. So a couple of questions from the group on the chat. So maybe we'll go over that. First one is from Sunrise, and his question is how do you draw the balance when you are available to the team for everything? Then how do they grow and they start doing stuff themselves rather than relying on you for everything. Right. So how do you strike that balance? Yeah, so the concept of being available to the team is not that every time they want to sneeze and cough and there too, it's not about that. It's really about saying that when they and over time, they also get to realize that if they begin to come to you for everything, it's also about how you mentor them, that they and coach them on what would they do or how would they solve their problem. Right. And normally you will find that if they are encouraged to think along those lines, they do come up with solutions. It's just that they need that. Some people are like self starters. They know what to do. But some people always have a little bit of fear or maybe they don't have confidence. So they want to kind of check out whether their solutions are okay. They want the shoulder to just kind of come and bounce ideas off. So when you're available to them, maybe the worst case scenario is where they come to you for every small thing. Right. But I think over time you also learn how to push that back. And then they also realize that what are those things that they like to come. And initially, if there is a time where it's also about you gauging what that person is going through, what that project is going through, and maybe they need that emotional support or technical support to the extent, how can you enable it for them? And that is what leaders really should be doing. How do you enable them to succeed? Very true. I think over time teams will understand for what they can approach. But first giving that approachability rope, right? So that kind of makes that difference. It's actually a tool for you. It's actually a fantastic tool for you to build trust. Right. When trust is mutual, then people also lose their fear. Most often your team members may have the fear that what if I go wrong? What I'm doing is it's not going to succeed? Fear of failure, fear of being blamed. So all of these fears, if you help them get over those in the long run, it pays off excellently well for you. Very true. So one question from Swathi. Women have often been noted to noted to deter from saying no to additional responsibilities. This invariably adds to the stress and burnout you touched upon earlier. It was you to share your recommendations on how women could handle or manage this, especially when faced with conflicting priorities. So if I understand right, are you saying that we try to say yes to everything and therefore we pile up many things? No, we don't have time to do right. We are hesitant to say no because we think that will be held against us. Right. That's again, I think the fear that we may have that this is going to not look good if I say no and hence I say yes and then I figure out that I don't have time for it. And then I obviously put so much of stress on myself and try to make it work somehow or the other. So for me, I think I would make a practical assessment of whether I can really take it on because it's not like and this, by the way, the threshold of how much you can take on is very individual. There is no standard threshold. There is obviously a set of work that you are paid to do and you do it, that's fine. But for taking things on, your ability to take multiple things on, it differs from person to person. It also depends on what status, I mean, what phase of life you are going through, even from a personal standpoint. Right? So therefore it is quite variable. Whenever you feel that you have the time and you can do it, you should feel confident enough to pick it up and say yes. If you're not, you should also be confident enough to say no, I cannot do this, I will take it up at the right time. I don't want to bother myself with this now. And it's absolutely fine, by the way, your manager or whoever is offering that to you, they will understand. It is our assumption that they will mistake me or they will write me off. It's not true. Yeah, that fear is definitely there when saying no indra. But you're right, over time we have to definitely develop that rate, I guess. Yeah, and I think we can do it. It's only about figuring out what your priorities are at what time, what is your own threshold. Because end of the day, remember that no matter what you are, where you are working, how you're working, ultimately you should have mental wellness also because otherwise you will not be able to contribute at work nor at home. And what are you living for if you don't live a healthy life? Very well said. That should be the circle around which we define our priorities. And then learn to say yes and no. And whenever you say yes, obviously it's with that same confidence that you give that 100% to that team. Absolutely. And I think one other point is when we are saying no or say yes and maybe we are looking at somebody else and they say, hey, that person is able to take this on or this person is not able to take this on. So we build a lot of thought process in our mind, always comparing ourselves with the other person. I strongly recommend that we don't do that. You please compare yourself with yourself. Are you the best self that you have brought today? That is enough. Because if you start comparing with somebody outside, we don't know what situation they are in, your situation would be different. Just compare yourself with yourself. Is this the best version I'm able to bring today? That's good enough. Yeah, that's so true, Indira. And while it's a little hard to practice, I think that's what each one of us should focus on, bringing our best self and how do we sustain that? So it's a piece of advice that I'll take personally too. Thanks for sharing that. The other one from Mary. This question is how do you have confidence in your decision making and your expertise? Wow. No, that's a very philosophical question. Yeah, it's a very philosophical question. How do I have confidence in my decision making? I think it comes with my experience of having seen what has worked and what has not worked. So when you've done something and you have seen it work, then you're very confident about it, right? Yes. And if you feel that you have seen something not working, then you also know what doesn't work. And that's what gives you the confidence when you make a decision. And as I said, when you're taking your decisions, you have data at that particular point in time and that point in time, whatever other data points that you have and whatever analysis that you could make out of it, it is in that context, in that context context, you know, okay, I can do this, I cannot do this. This is a good decision to make and you go ahead with that decision. It may be right or wrong. It has happened several times that it can go wrong later on. Also it doesn't matter, it's not something that we should feel ourselves for. So you just develop it. Yeah. One more from Mary. Were you always a great communicator? I don't think I'm a great communicator. I think I have a long way to go. I always get mesmerized when I see some really good speakers and I try to practice. But I tried this, you obviously read and see videos and stuff where you hear about this guy Tim Cook or whoever talking in front of the mirror and learning how to express themselves in video calls and so on, but I must say I was not that good at it. So yeah, it's a great area of improvement for me because I definitely feel that I can do better on that front. But having said that Indira, to me communication is sending your message across and then the team's delivering towards it. So by that definition, I guess you've always been a great communicator. I definitely try to I think I'm good in smaller groups, but I'm not like that good in large groups. That's where I can improve. Thank you so much Indira, for quickly answering all those questions. I know we have closed the questions on the chat now, but I would like to ask Reyno any of the lead volunteers who are there in the group to see if they have any questions. Hi, Satsati Reno here seeing the seven habits and I see those all fall in leadership area. Where do you place the domain and functional ability of the leader? So let's say you are head of Customer care or you are head of Enterprise supply chain or think of any title being good in the domain or process or work that you are responsible for, how important is that? And you're your thought leadership like establishing yourself in that field to your known internal external circle, how important is that for a leader? So in my view there is a baseline of domain knowledge that one would expect no matter which domain you get into or which function you're leading, there is a baseline. Obviously that can't be the best because we do rotate roles. If that was so, then we would never be able to have any leadership rotation. Right? But in my mind that might constitute maybe 25% and it's also something that you can learn on the job. But I feel the leadership practices that one should develop really take much longer than, let's say a functional and a domain knowledge. And I feel that obviously they are important, they are great skills, they have great knowledge base that one has to pick up. But leadership skills really come. I don't know, like Sarah said, it's almost like an art. I don't know whether you can actually how you work on them, but I think functional and domain knowledge, it's important to have a baseline because otherwise you cannot have conversations that make sense when you're in other forums with other stakeholders, with other team members and collaborating with other groups, et cetera. So you do need to have a base knowledge. But I think beyond that, I think it's more like how you are able to conduct yourself. In either case, you will never be an expert in every process that exists in the company. It's impossible for a single person to be an expert, but you should definitely know how to take the help of that expert at the right time when you need it. And you should have the intelligence and the knowledge enough for you to be able to ask the right questions. So in my view, that's where I would beg domain and function on. Yeah, I think maybe. At the leadership level I'm talking about at the leadership level. If I'm heading a group, I would beget at that. Obviously, if I'm the process expert, I better know it fully. I mean, if I'm playing role of the process expert, I better be that expert in that area. But if heading a group, then I need to know who to go to, who is my expert, what are the questions I need to ask that person? So I'm not sure whether that was the question that you asked and whether I answered your question, but that's what I see. That's fine. Thank you. Thank you. There's one more from Mary before that. Harry, did you have a question? Sure. Thank you. I just want to understand, with all this, how do you really manage the time and in case, for example, if there are any conflicting priorities, how do you deal with them? Actually, how do you deal with conflicting priorities? Conflicting priorities? Yeah. It's always a challenge, like you say, right? Time management is the most difficult thing for fitting in everything that you want to do in a day. But there are some things which I would not like to compromise on and I would like to get them out of the way, for instance, when I begin the day. But there are obviously some things which, out of just sheer lack of time, you try to push it to maybe another day or maybe over the weekend if you can pick it up. But conflicting priorities, I don't know, I feel that while there are a whole lot of them that especially, for example, managing your calendar, that itself is such a challenge when you have so many conflicting meetings and it seems hard for us to decide which meeting we should attend and which we should decline. But then while on the face of it, it looks like that, I think when we actually get to the content, I try to look at what that meeting is going to be about. Am I able to make a contribution to making any decision in that meeting? If not, then I would rather just decline that meeting and go to another meeting where I'm actually playing the role of being a decision maker. And on the previous one I would like to kind of get updated. So maybe I'll read the minutes or I'll try to figure out what happened in that meeting by meeting, by discussing with somebody else there. But I would rather not attend a meeting where I'm a silent spectator. I would rather attend those meetings where I need to contribute and that will decide my priority. Usually I try to use that. A couple more questions will close with that. One is often women are internal leaders in family or home, but not professionally. How can women make the jump to become professional leaders? And alternatively there are people who are both outside but they keep very low profile at home. Yeah, they seem to be leading at home but not professionally. Is that the question? That's the question. Maybe you're so exhausted after leading at home. Maybe you need to get some help in sharing some tasks at home, left with some energy and motivation to kind of lead professional but there's really nothing that stops us if you're able to home is a lot more complex with stakeholders who matter to us so emotionally and there's so much of emotional stress that comes there. If you're able to manage that well, I'm sure that you'll be managed professional well, very true. And one last question will close with this. We are almost at the top of that. Over the decades, how the leaders role. Has changed, how the leaders role has changed. Has it changed? If I look back at, let's say brick and mortar kind of industries, I think the leadership is more like command and control. That's the kind of leadership that worked very well. But then I think in the knowledge industry that just doesn't work. And further on I can see the difference and not even just my generation, maybe Gen Z or whatever. Gen Y, gen Z and all of those which kind of if the person is not excited about the work they do, they can just walk out because they know that their knowledge will be respected elsewhere. So leadership is really about harnessing the potential of your team in the knowledge industry. Respect the knowledge that they have, make them feel part of your big picture. So really your job is about selling your vision to them or selling your big picture to them and having them contribute to it. You're actually taking their expertise and hence you have to very clearly demonstrate that they are the reason why you are able to reach your vision. So basically having them feel part of that journey is I think, the change in leadership styles between command and control versus respect for the knowledge that a person has and then get them to contribute. I think that's such a lovely answer to how the perspective has changed and you're so right. Taking the team along in what we do become so instrumental to overall success. So thank you so much. Indra we are at the top of the hour, but it was a great conversation and I thank all the participants for being interactive and to you, of course, for sharing all the nuggets of business with us. And then give your perspective straight from the heart for all the questions that the team had. Thank you so much. Have a great evening ahead. Thank you. Thank you for having me here. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. Thanks, everyone. Yeah, thanks. Bye.