“In the past, people were born royal. Nowadays, royalty comes from what you do.” Gianni Versace
What can a company learn from an individual who has spent considerable time of a career in royal and aristocratic company of both the social and business kind? To begin with, the lesson could be about a certain kind of finesse in the general work-culture. Sarita exudes grace and elegance of a highly contagious nature in her role as the executive secretary to the Managing Director of Su-Kam Power Systems Limited. The primary responsibilities of this job itself are sufficiently formidable; it’s to infuse elegance and grace into the role that distinguishes an adept from an up-start.
And an adept organiser this Gargi College graduate inarguably is. Sarita took up vocation after marriage upon being consistently encouraged in the direction by a progressive mother-in-law. Armed with a diploma in Secretarial Practice from YMCA, which was secured in 1988, she joined a prominent Sewing-Products company a year after marriage. Never the one to shy away from challenges, in December 1993 Sarita made a move to the Delhi Stock Exchange where she spent twelve good years of her illustrious career.
With this Sarita found herself led by destiny to a tryst with Royalty. After appearing in an Interview in Delhi, Sarita met with H.H. Arvind Singh of Mewar and was offered the position of Executive Secretary to the Maharaja himself. Nevertheless, due to concerns regarding her children’s education away from a big urban centre, Sarita had to cut her royal reservation short and return back to Delhi. In the capital city Sarita joined a prominent Real Estate firm as a secretary to that company’s Legal Director who was also on the company’s board of directors.
Let’s paint the town red: At a Su-Kam recreational event
Sarita was thus able to uphold the career-continuum of working only with the crème-de-la-crème of society and business. She takes pride in a career that has afforded her close proximity to the top business tycoons and cultural czars of the country and of having the enviable opportunity to observe genuine pioneers in industry from close quarters. The experience, says Sarita, has been both educative and humbling.
The thread of working with great personalities continues un-severed for Sarita in Su-Kam, which she joined in 2009 as the Executive Secretary to Mr Kunwer Sachdev, the MD of the company. Infact, it was in interesting circumstances that Sarita gained passage into her current position in the company. The vignette shared by her goes like so: In the interview with Mr Sachdev Sarita had quoted a considerably higher package than the other shortlisted candidate. In negotiations she stuck to her guns and refused to budge. As the interview had gone off very well, the MD consented and hired Sarita on her terms. Sarita feels that this incident is a testament to the MD’s penchant for going with his gut and rendering financial considerations secondary in the pursuit of quality over numbers. She has also found the same attitude replicated on many an instance throughout her stay in the company so far.
A family that cooks together stays together: Putting her culinary skills on display
Her journey with Su-Kam has been considerably rewarding and having begun her role in the Company at the level of middle management; Sarita has today reached the position of AGM and is an active contributor to all its major decisions. As Mr Sachdev is also at the helm of affairs of Administration and HR Support, Sarita frequently engages with issues concerning these segments of work. Thus her work-profile, in keeping with the Company’s philosophy of thinking out of the box in matters of HR, is a bouquet of ancillary responsibilities woven around the principle responsibility. In this vein Sarita makes frequent trips to branches to keep the varied reigns of business in a sorted state. She believes that Mr Sachdev is a man of perceivably manifest intelligence and has a steely grip on issues of HR minutiae. She points to the additional responsibility conferred upon her for running the Company’s then newly-formed bakery as a case in point. The said bakery, which was operational for six to seven months, was placed completely under Sarita’s executive control. This involved a further diversification of responsibilities in the nature of obtaining quotations at airports, negotiating with corporate clients and in keeping an unwavering tab on quality control.
Sarita confides that her current work-place differs from her previous organisations in that the current’s more of a family than a corporate establishment. She acknowledges that the quintessential DNA of the Su-Kam HR policy lies in encouraging employees to be all they can be without ever being constrained by formal lines of demarcation. She points at herself as an example of the Company’s obsession with discovering new talent in employees over and above that they were originally hired for. It wouldn’t be out of place to brand Sarita the standard-bearer of elegance and aristocratic conduct in a world which sometimes gets overwhelmed by the whirl-pool strewn waters of cut-throat competition. Hers is a lesson to both emulate and cherish.