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We reached out to Mr. Shashi Maudgal for the first interview as part of our new initiative 'Know a Member' series. As part of this series we intend to interview one of the group members every week. Please read his amazing responses to the questions below.
1. What was your biggest take-away from the training at IIT?
Ans - A setting of the highest standards.
I also "took-away" my wife from the IIT and that will always rank as my biggest achievement!
2. Post IIT, what has been your biggest assignment of which you are proud of?
Ans - Every assignment has been big on learning. In terms of challenges, the assignment as CEO of a branded garments company relatively early in my career, rates high. I was the company's first employee and we launched the brand after a year's ground-up preparation, starting with building a great team. The company continues to run successfully long after my departure, and that is cause for satisfaction.
The current assignment is great as well. Large in scale in every way and in a region that is the manufacturer to the world. My skills as a global citizen are fully tested in this multi-cultural environment.
3. What has been your formula to successfully rise up the corporate ladder?
Ans - I have tried to be true to myself. I have never looked at any ladder but let success be an outcome of good work.
4. Did you have any role models who inspired you in your career thus far?
Ans - I have had many well-wishers and am grateful for their indulgence. I do not recommend role models. You will discover that even the best and brightest are only human. Try and learn a bit from here and a bit from there.
The best lessons come from common people - drivers and maids and dhaba owners. And from your mother. Listen to Mom !
5. How do you think IIT graduates in Korea can contribute to India's growth under the able leadership of our new govt. ?
Ans - First and foremost, do well in your job and do well by your family and friends. That is the best contribution you can make not just to India but to the Cosmos. Do not look at yourself as an "elite institution graduate" but as an ordinary person who might have got a little lucky.
At another level, look at how you can help to develop the ideas that are on India's agenda today. "Digital India" and "Smart Cities" go well with your own technical background as well as Korea's strengths. You could provide genuine thought leadership in these areas if you get after them.
(The new leadership shows some serious intent but I would not certify them as "able" just yet.)
6. Advise for other IIT graduates in our group?
Ans - I hesitate to give advise, but as a person with good fortune similar to yours, this is what I tell myself frequently :"Stay humble."
Shashi Maudgal is President, Novelis Asia. In this role, he provides leadership for Novelis as the company grows in Asia. Prior to joining Novelis in 2012, Mr. Maudgal was Chief Marketing Officer for Hindalco Industries Limited, an Aditya Birla Group company. He built and led the company’s marketing department, led the European due diligence process during Hindalco’s acquisition of Novelis in 2007, and served as a member of the executive leadership team in setting strategic direction. He was a member of the Aditya Birla Group's Business Review Councils for Grasim Viscose Fiber and Ultratech's Birla White Cement. Shashi holds a Bachelor of Technology degree in Chemical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi and a Master’s of Business Administration from the Indian Institute of Management Calcutta. He has also done the Advanced Management Program from Harvard University.