Your top priority while making decisions to improve tech infra in your organisation?
While taking a decision on improving the tech infrastructure, the most important thing for me will be whether this helps makes the product easier to use. So, for instance, if procuring a new data server will positively impact customer experience, I will procure it. Of course, from a business perspective, the other things that I consider while taking decisions on tech infra are whether it will help us scale faster as a company and whether it helps quicken our expansion into newer markets.
Challenges you face in driving digital transformation?
As a company, we’ve always broken the mould with our SaaS-based products. Our customers usually expect a physical product, and convincing them about our online suite is a challenge. Other challenges include customer resistance to digitization, a tendency to stick with legacy systems or processes, and in some cases, a lack of a future-ready strategy.
We have solved this using a combination of Quora answers, explainer videos, and other online media, by employing a more conversational way of reaching and educating customers about our products. We have a highly interactive online sales team, who educate customers about our products and their benefits, even making sales and conducting product demos online, without needing to meet customers. This approach has helped our customer engagement more lifecycle oriented, where we have a better understanding of how customers use our products, and how we need to work on future updates.
Do you feel that freshers in the industry come with only basic knowledge but don’t have the right skills to fulfil the job requirements? If yes, your suggestion to students and colleges?
I don’t think so. While freshers do have a basic knowledge of the industry, what they lack in skills they make it up for in zeal and energy. Having said that, there are many fundamental aspects like written and verbal communication, along with a certain level of emotional intelligence, which if learnt, go a long way into shaping how a graduate’s career pans out. I think this is where students and colleges need to improve, as these aspects are not traditionally taught.
What’s your mantra to become successful in life?
While I draw inspiration from other successful people, and hard work is a big part of becoming successful, but personally, “heart work” has played a more important part in my journey. I am an ardent believer in the power of positivity, and I feel that if you set your mind to something, and you want it enough, the universe will help you make it come true.
Building better relationships, whether with employees or friends, or family is a key aspect that ensures success in professional and personal life. And this is one mantra that I have extended to my company.
What would you like to give back to the society?
There are a couple of things I want to give back to society. Apart from making products that make life easy for society as a whole, I would like to share my learnings, mentor young people, and even invest money to help young entrepreneurs. By doing this, I will help create an ecosystem which encourages more and more people to believe in their ideas and start their own business.
Your favourite book and what are you reading now?
I have a huge collection of all kinds of books, which have inspired me at different stages of my life. I prefer reading success stories, and crime fiction. The book I am reading right now is called “Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking”, a collection of short stories by Malcolm Gladwell.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?
I love binge watching series on Netflix. I don’t have a preference for a particular genre, but if I had to choose - “Narcos”, “4 more shots”, “Made in Heaven”, are a couple of my personal favourites
Recently, I have gotten into gaming too, because of my son. And reading has always been an all-time favourite leisure activity.
Achievements (Awards & Recognitions)
In my 16-year career, I can list many awards and achievements, but, what stands out for me is the positive impact I have been able to make on the lives and careers of younger people, my peers, and my family.
I am the Founder & CEO of Telebu Communications, and I have been successfully running a customer-funded business for over 16 years. In 2003, after realizing the potential of Bulk SMS, I began A2Z exams, an online examination portal, and 160by2.com, which I sold later in 2011. In early 2019, I decided to rename my company SMSCountry to Telebu Communications, a word that merged telecommunication and business and better conveyed our core offerings.
First Job - While studying at the University of Western Sydney, I worked at the university library sorting books and keeping order. I really enjoyed this job, as I loved being around books.
Education - Bachelor’s in Mechanical Engineering from Osmania University. Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Western Sydney.
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