Day 1

A few weeks ago I had an amazing opportunity to visit Amazon offices in India. This was an eye opener with so much to see and learn about how this building is designed for providing Amazon employees maximum comfort as they spend many hours in these facilities developing new innovative ideas.

In the four buildings that I have visited it was very clear what are the expectations and the emphasis on creative and ideation from their employees. The message is very clear, we deliver results and with phrases such as: “Work hard, play hard” or “Free your imagination” you get the drift. In return, the facilities provided to all team members includes plenty of nice breakout spots to choose from, top of the art scum areas, large cafeteria and games room.

At the reception area, there is a large sign of “Day 1” and when I asked what does it mean they explained how in Amazon they want their employees to come to work and feel like it is their first day in the company. The idea is to preserve the motivation and avoid any bias influence on creativity and innovation.

This approach made me think about how companies communicate with their employees. Should it be a bold and outgoing statement or more of a subtle approach…I presume it is come down to the company philosophy and strategy. That’s what makes the differentiation between business. Plenty to learn from this driving company.

Dealing with perception

A few years ago, I participated in a leadership program and part of the introductions we were required to introduce ourselves following a feedback session on how we went. I remember that when delivered my elevator speech the feedback that was given by my fellow colleagues was that I looked younger and the perception might be that I don’t have enough experience.

This was the first time I came across the power of perception and what it means in term of my career path. Later on, as I progressed and moved into more senior roles I had to deal with perception and find creative ways to influence how people think and operate.

Recently I was privileged to travel again to Bangalore, India and had the opportunity to explore the surrounding and experienced it through the eyes of the local team. Every time I travel to India, I’m discovering a new gem and I know that there is so much more to see. What I have discovered every time that I’ve been here is that people will go above and beyond to make sure you have been looked after. Beside the fascinating sightseeing and the incredible food, I encourage everyone to travel to India at least once in a lifetime.

So next time before forming a perception about somewhere or someone, try to give it a go and really see things for what they real are. You might be pleasantly surprised.

Here we go again

It feels like not too long ago I wrote about the year that passed and now 2018 has already gone.

As last year, I see this as a great opportunity to reflect on the year that was and what a great year it has been. In 2018, I faced challenges, had the opportunity to meet amazing people all over the globe and accumulated new skills along the way. The most important thing, was the fact that I have enjoyed doing what I do and through the year, I have evolved and grew so much.

So what did I achieve in 2018? This time last year, I moved into a new role within the finance department, without knowing where this path will take me, I was requested to lead the establishment of a new entity located in Bangalore, India.

This was a steep learning curve and I gained business and local knowledge. It was also a great opportunity to work alongside incredible people who taught me so much and I’m so grateful for each person I have met and interacted with along the way.

I have no doubt that 2019 is going to be exciting with new challenges on the horizon which makes me thrilled to what’s ahead of us.

Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a Happy New Year. I know that this year will be even more exciting than last year.

2019 here I come!!

Just do it

So many times in life we heard the phrase, do the right thing even when no one is watching. This expression was resonated with me and I was thinking about what it means to me.

A few days ago, I started my routine in the morning and got into the car and was on my way to work. When I was few metres away from a very busy intersection I noticed that most of the cars in front of me started to shift towards the left lane. Few more metres forward, it was clear what was the reason for the shift. On the right lane there was a very big branch that fell on the road.

Same as everyone else, I signalled to the left and overtook this obstacle. When I have done this, I thought about what is the right thing to do. Is it to keep on going and continue with my busy day or should I do something to help others. In a split of a second decision, I decided to pullover and drag the branch into the side walk to ensure the safety of the people that were behind me and maybe couldn’t see this object on the road.

Sometimes those little things we just do makes an impact on someone else’s life. Sometimes it is just making us feel great about doing something for the greater good.

Co-pilot

Recently I was assigned to a large project and was advised that my role will be a supportive role to the project lead and I will be acting as the co-pilot.

Initially I was concerned about the role and how I can fit in with the project team. At that point I wasn’t sure about my role and how I can contribute to the delivery of the project.

Very quickly, I started to learn more about the project itself, the team and the challenges we were facing. It was evident that the project team was required to build a governance framework for delivering tasks and accountabilities.

Slowly things started to fall into place and I’ve gathered a better understanding of the value of the supportive role to the project group and that this was as important as any other leadership role in the project team.

This made me think about how sometimes we underestimate our contribution for the greater good. We all have a role to play and it is important to have a sense of appreciation for what each individual can deliver and the pivotal role everyone plays in achieving the share goals together as a team.

Reward and recognition

In the last few months I was working on a new overseas initiative that was completely different from any work I have been involved with in the past.

Only few days ago when I was requested to provide a list of all the people that contributed to the successful delivery of the project I realised how many people from all business areas were involved in the execution of this program.

This morning we had a thank you morning tea for everyone involved and I was so proud to stand with the team and reflect on what we have been able to achieve and the great learnings we had along the way.

At the end of the recognition of everyone’s contribution, I received these beautiful flowers and amazing card from our leader. To say that I was humble and grateful will be an understatement. It is amazing what recognition and a simple thanks can do to boost your motivation.

The best part for me was that I didn’t expect anything and throughout the whole project was focused on delivering the milestones and support the project team.

Truly grateful to work in a workplace that appreciate and apprise all team members with their contribution for the greater good.

Thank you to each and everyone who has been a part, I won’t be able to recognise everyone but you know who you are.