The next significant first that made a great difference to my career and life was the first time I took up leadership responsibilities .This was when I left ETTDC to join HRL ( Hindustan Reprographics Ltd) part of the HCL Group ,which later merged with the other consituents of the HCL group to become HCL Ltd Reprrographics Division and then as HCLOA Division now part of the HCL Infinet organisation.This was in May 1983.
The team I inherited was a small one comprising Harish Muthana,Thomas George,Vikram Astha ( who didnt fit in and left in about three months ) Sanjeev ,later Anil Sondur and our sincere & dedicated secretary Edna D’mello .We where the Micrography Sales Team of the Western Region .I was then the District Sales Manager ( Western Region).It was really Harish & George who formed the early team , their earlier Boss had been asked to leave for indifferent performance and both Harish & George where on extended probation with just three month to perform or go .
We struggled as a team for a good 4 to 5 months with out a single order but we knew we where on the right track and results where round the corner .We stuck together as a team and also stuck to the task on hand .Then the first order came in from Vulcan Lavel ,Pune and soon the flood gates openned with order after order all strictly as per terms and with 30% advance .Never considered possible at that time.We ended the year way above plan or expectations, infact the Western Region clocked business more than the entire rest of the country by a very huge margin .Harish & George become loyal trusted Salesmen for HCL and grew within the organisation & where rated very highly .I still keep in touch wirh Harish though I have now lost touch with George.I was given instant recognition by being first promoted as an ASM and shortly thereafter an RSM with responsibility of West & South Regions.
This was the arena where I finally broke out of my shell to be recognised as a key performer for the company .This was also the learning ground for establishing my leadership style & traits .I went on to leader much bigger teams with much more resposibilities in HCL and Xerox and by and large my style worked well for me .Looking back I would certainly do many things differently ,however the basic style would remain.
There is a lot I would share about leadership ,my wins and losses ,what worked what didnt, what where effective traits and what not so effective.This I will leave for a future date .
Though I was now a performer ,I continued to be reserved and diffident and unsure of my self .It would take many more years and several outstanding victories before I came reasonably to terms with myself.This is also material for a different day and time.