This phenomenal growth of the services sector has been driven by an increased investment in human capital. Globalization has resulted in free flow of human resources which accentuates the need to manage employees effectively to gain the much needed competitive advantage in the global marketplace. This dynamic scenario raises many questions and some of the questions that the summit answered included the significance of HR in business strategy, their influence on the ‘Work-Life Balance’, maintenance of the diverse workforce, the success of mergers and acquisitions and virtual global teams.
The fruitful discussion by the esteemed speakers was on ‘Cross-Connection: Mind your culture!’ and ‘Home-Work: The Perfect Balance!’. The session began with the welcome note by Dr. A. Venkatraman, Faculty at FMS who shared some of his work experiences and spoke about the rebirth of HR covering the thematic issue of cultural inferences and tried to answer the question- ‘Why do we behave the way we behave?’ Mr. Rajeshwar Tripathi, Senior Vice-President (HR), Mahindra & Mahindra spoke about M&M;’s experiences of an acquisition and joint-venture in China. Citing the learnings from his experiences, he said, “Sending our best brains to China didn’t click for the lack of attitude, adaptability and an inability of some of the individuals to understand people from alien cultures.” Of the many adaptations and divergent approaches followed by the company, some included were a balance between a logic-driven and vision-driven approach and a step-by-step way of going about things as opposed to multi-tasking.
The second speaker in line was Ms. Sanchita Singh, Head (O&S;), GE Money. Ms. Singh brought onto the dais her experiences from a plethora of sectors including manufacturing, commercial, technology and the BPO industry. She delved into the ‘Flexible Work Assignments’ strategy being followed by GE. She cited her personal experiences from the organization and defined Work-Life balance as a sustainable growth in a changing environment. Mr. Vivek Gera, Head HR (North India), Centurion Bank of Punjab, spoke about his experiences of managing the merger of Centurion Bank and the Bank of Punjab and, sharing information about the role of HR in the success of M&A; deals, said, “We need to match designations, salaries, responsibilities, grading structures and pre-plan the processes of integration to eliminate the occurrence of any attrition.
Introducing Work-Life balance as an ‘Urban Legend’, Mr. Saurav Dey, Black Belt, Process Excellence Team at Genpact, spoke about various myths and inhibitions that we have including more hours in office lead to greater productivity need to be dispelled before a Work-Life balance can be achieved. In a highly interactive session, Mr. Dey cautioned the future Corporate honchos of the ‘tail wagging the dog phenomenon’ taking place as a result of increased dependence on technological gadgets. The last speaker of the first session was Mr. Vivek Tripathi, Vice-President (Consulting Services), Grow Talent. With an industry experience of over two decades, Mr. Tripathi gave useful insights into the concept of Organizational Culture and the consequences of cross-cultural diversity on the seamless functioning of organizations. He defined organizational culture as ‘the personality of the organization – the way things get done in the organization’. Mr. Tripathi described the Edgar Schein’s model of organizational culture that consisted of various tangible and intangible attributes of an organization and its members.
The post-tea session was a breather for the students of the two batches of MBA (Management of Services). The session had Mr. Rajesh Jagasia of Art of Living guiding the students towards the path of spirituality to attain the perfect balance between work and life. He said that there was a need to make a trade-off between respect and love and distance and merger. The closing remarks of the speaker were, “Manage your mind then manage your life for the quality of your life is determined by the state of your life”. The event saw active participation from various management schools in and around the National Capital region.