How to build a successful career with NV “Tiger” Tyagarajan, President and CEO, Genpact LLC

How to build a successful career with NV “Tiger” Tyagarajan, President and CEO, Genpact LLC


You know, over the years, I’ve
actually also come up with my own theory of how do you build a career One day I’ll write a book I think about carriers along three dimensions Let’s call it X, Y, Z The X dimesion is
the types of skills that different roles require So finance skills vs technology skills
vs marketing skills etc., etc. The Y dimesion is the type of cultural environment in which those skills
are used and exploited So the cultural environment could be an American culture vs European culture
vs an Indian culture The cultural environment could be a family oriented
entrepreneurial group vs multinational environment vs
an Indian professional environment and so on So it’s really the cultural environment
in which that business and
that role has to be delivered The third dimension is the industry, domain that
that role belongs to So I’ve always thought about every role can
be defined along these three dimensions X, Y and Z And I’ve always said as you
go through your career do three or four things One, at least one of these dimensions, make
sure you really become an expert at and you do that early in your career I’m a big believer that as you
go through your career you’ll always be known for one or
two things that define you It could be that you are, at your heart, a finance person or it could be that you are, at your heart,
a real engineer who understands production and supply chain and those kinds of things or
you could be really be a marketing parson That defines you as almost a safety net So if everything else is lost
you can go back to your core The second rule that I had I kind of don’t have any more because I don’t
think I’m going to be changing jobs in a hurry but I used to have when I changed jobs and careers is Change one dimension everytime you
move from one role to another but don’t change two dimensions
if you can avoid it and please don’t change three dimensions
because that’s a disaster So, you know, if you want to move from a very different culture to a very different culture So when I evaluated roles from
India to Hong Kong I didn’t want to change the
functional expertise that I had which at that point was risk and I said, in risk,
I’ll go into Hong Kong because trying to change
two dimensions is risky Your chances of success are going to be lower The third is,
over a period of three or four moves change all dimensions So, if you look at, from role number 1 to role number 4,
you should have changed X and Y and Z and then you are in a different culture, in a
different industry in a different domain You almost can, therefore, chart your career as
multiple potential options So, what I used to do is actually think about
my next role could be this or this or this So everytime someone came up and I used to work in
organizations where change was driver hard driven hard Unilever, Citibank and then GE all organizations that have a very change-oriented culture and, therefore, when I was told to move jobs it
took me pretty much ten minutes to say yes or no Most of the times, I said yes because all I needed to do was
fit it into this model So I changed six roles in three years with Citibank I changed four roles in six years with Ponds and Levers and I must have changed some five roles
in five years with GE and GE Capital until I took this role you know, and until I took this
particular company of this business and then I’ve been there for a long time Every generation goes through a different evolution
and it’s probably happening faster than ever before So, if you think about the generation that
is getting into the work force today they are more impatient, they are actually more exposed, they probably are more knowledgeable, they want everything in life, their gratification has to be instant, so all of those define them And I don’t think you can change that That’s how they grew up, that’s the exposure they
have, that’s the technology they use so you have to assume that’s the way it is I think, if I were them I would find a
way to leverage that but yet find a way to build one or two areas that you become known for,
that you’ve become passionate about, that you can fall back on because those, I don’t think, have changed Unfortunately you may
realize it only after ten years When we hire people today
and we look at resumes I don’t care what a great job someone is doing
today or yesterday If their resume shows
six jobs in ten years zero chance of them being called
for an interview. Zero chance We just don’t call them Because no amount of telling me why they did what
they did is going to convince me that they are gonna last Equity gets created whether that’s personal equity, relationship equity
or just equity equity only when time is spent Knowledge gets created only with time Knowledge gets created when you combine
intellect with experience So one of the biggest things
that I would tell people coming out of universities into the workforce
and joining the work force today is Do not underestimate time and
do not underestimate relationships and both require equity The other thing that I would tell them is don’t worry about what you’re getting into Worry about where you are getting into and who are the people
you’re gonna work with You are at a stage where you’re gonna learn
and if you don’t have an attitute that’s to learn and if you don’t have an environment
that the teaches you then you are in the wrong place If someone were to ask me,
what is the one joy that you get over twenty five years of a career,
I would say the one joy that I get is when I see people who have worked with me who have worked for me and
are now in probably bigger jobs adding a lot of value,
really successful and I can look at them and say,
part of the reason they are who they are is because of the fact that we worked together I think the joy of being able to
do that and proliferate I think that reorganization which I did
a lot when I was with GE because it’s a large enough company and you keep
grooming people and you throw them around Over time they become your moles, your supporters and then you progress because of them But that applies even to the broader ecosystem If you look at the industry today, a
lot of people who run companies in the industry are actually people
who’ve worked with us in the history and then it obviously applies globally as well so again, if you define that as what is the
most important thing that gives you joy, then actually, you’ll run every role that you have differently You’ll be a big coach so I ‘m a big believer that all
leaders have to be coaches You’ll spend a lot of time with people
to make them successful You’ll define your success
based on their success which means you will never take credit
you will always give credit So lot of things like that become important when you think about
what makes you happy happy and joyful about your twenty five years So, the last thing I’d say is
I’m extremely passionate about what I do I, actually, am a big believer, and I
think Steve Jobs has said this, you do what you’re passionate about and
you should be passionate about what you do otherwise, you should not do it And if the two match, then there’s no difference between work and play,
there’s no such thing as work-life balance So I work 24 hours though I might not be in office I love what I do I’m really passionate about what I do and I think
if people actually gravitate to doing things whatever it is that combine those two then I think the chances of being
hugely successful is so much better

Randy Schultz

Related Posts

16 thoughts on “How to build a successful career with NV “Tiger” Tyagarajan, President and CEO, Genpact LLC

  1. SABIT AZIZ says:

    great words!!!!

  2. Jasveer singh says:

    Really nice

  3. Prashant Sahni says:

    truly awesome!

  4. shyamala sasi says:

    some of them was eye opening!!

  5. Bizpunditz says:

    Thank you for the kind comments. Let us know what kind of videos you would like to see. We will do our best to get them! 🙂

  6. MrRaghuram9 says:

    Tiger you made me realize what I lost and What I should now…very thought provoking interview this is…. thank you very much

  7. Ravi Chaudhary says:

    It really inspired me a lot so that i can make my career with the adoption of new idea and opportunities comes in competitive environment ….. 

  8. Nisha Patel says:

    Thank you so much . I hope this helps me alot.I would like to know about some interview rounds of genpact such as versant round.:)

  9. Bizpunditz says:

    @Tiger Tyagarajan shares his insights on how to build a successful career with @Bizpunditz  here :

  10. Amruta Tendolkar says:

    This is really helpful!

  11. Dnyanesh Gore says:

    Wow, I must admit. Skills is today's currency!

  12. Akshay Nikam says:

    Wow!!! Its really very nice… great words!

  13. Bizpunditz says:

    Subscribe Now – http://www.youtube.com/subscription_center?add_user=bizpunditz

  14. Sadanand Maheshwaram says:

    very impressive speech

  15. Kunal Sharma says:

    I changed all dimensions after my mba and landed on my bum. Very true

  16. Rambabu Jakka says:

    I am delighted to listen to the 03 career dimensions you have put forward.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *