CxO of The Week: Tushar Garimalla, Chief Growth Officer, Capital Float

By : |April 8, 2019 0

Tushar Garimalla, Chief Growth Officer, Capital Float, has been chosen as CxO of the week. An electrical engineer from Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, Tushar had short insurance underwriting and software engineering stints prior to building his credit risk and analytics career at HSBC Card Services in India and Chicago, USA.

He managed customer management for non-prime credit card portfolios and Best Buy private label cards before moving to the deal valuations team at Capital One wherein he successfully completed the General Motors Small Business Card transaction, the first portfolio purchase of the business of the partnership. In his search for something more exciting, he joined Capital Float in early 2015 where he served as the Vice-President of Decision Sciences for 3 years, before taking on the role of Chief Growth Officer almost a year ago. Our CxO of the week, Tushar, is currently focused on building models and processes to scale automated lending across various verticals at Capital Float.

Your top priority while making decisions to improve tech infra in your organization?

Chief among the decision-making factors for me are – cost and scalability. Implementing the best available infrastructure might not be appropriate for every organization. The cost benefits and scalability offered by the tech-infra must be optimum for the organization, at its stage of development and readiness.

For example, Big Data is one of the buzzwords in the industry today. However, there are a lot of non-Big Data solutions that may not have the uber appeal of Big Data, but in essence, are effective solutions. An organization must adopt Big Data if they are equipped to handle the demands of implementing such technology and if they must absolutely dabble with Big Data. Otherwise, the maintenance of the tech infra could prove to be prohibitively expensive for the organization, which could lead to new challenges.

Challenges you face in driving digital transformation?

Decision-makers in organizations who aren’t well-versed with the rapid advancements in technology often find it challenging to keep pace with the speed of technological change. Due to being detached from these advancements on a day-to-day basis, they shy away from asking what might appear to be basic questions about technology. These inhibitions could lead to bureaucratic bottlenecks and hamper the speed of digital transformation. It is imperative to create an environment wherein asking questions is encouraged.

Junior employees, on the other hand, are often threatened by technology, as they think that technology will eventually replace them. What several junior employees fail to understand, is that the nature of their job is evolving and that they might operate in a largely evolved role in 10 years. Therefore, despite the possibility of machines replacing humans, humans are unlikely to be out of work.

It is advised that junior employees that work with technology perceive technology as an enabler and not as competition, which would further accelerate digital transformation.

Do you feel that freshers in the industry come with only basic knowledge but don’t have the right skills to fulfil job requirements? If yes, your suggestion to students and colleges?

The prescribed coursework in academia is typically not sufficient to prepare students for the workplace. However, there is an abundance of online courses that equip students to prepare for the real work environment. Students are progressively pursuing these online courses, and this is highly recommended. That being said, several organizations still hire based on academic grades, so students are advised to also focus on their coursework, thereby performing well from a traditional academic perspective while also equipping themselves with skills for the workplace.

What’s your mantra to become successful in life?

1. Smart work over hard work; using the quickest and most effective way to achieve the desired result

2. Balancing personal and professional lives, as this is possibly the hardest to do if you are an ambitious person

3. Learning how to say no without breaking the relationship, as it helps you stay focused on what matters and is a priority.

What would you like to give back to society?

In short, I’d say Financial Inclusion. Corporations aren’t typically structured to serve certain segments of society. My aim is to change corporate behaviour and leverage technology to address the financial needs of various under-served segments.

Your favourite book and what are you reading now?

When I do read, I prefer it to be light material. For instance, Tales of Tenali Raman & 51 lesser known tales from the Mahabharata are two books that I’m currently reading. My favourite book is A history of the Sikhs by Khushwant Singh.

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

In my spare time, I like to try out new food and cuisines, watch science fiction shows and movies, and travel to places I’ve not visited.

Achievements (Awards & Recognitions)?

I’ve won awards for professional excellence at companies I’ve worked at.

Experience

Tushar has almost 15 years of experience.

First Job – In 2005, ICICI Lombard as an insurance underwriter

Education – I’ve studied B Tech in electrical engineering at IIT Madras

Take a look at the previous CxO of the Week

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