Sindhu Gopalakrishnan, Founder & Director, InforTran
“Give opportunities to women who were not able to get back to workforce post maternity leave. There is a gold mine of talent waiting to be tapped.”
I left Tally Solutions at the peak of my career as the Head of Product Management & Delivery in 2011. Tally was, at that time, moving from product business to enterprise solutions business. The organization had to go through a massive restructuring. There was a huge gap between what I wanted to achieve and what the organization was going to offer. So after 20 years in IT industry, I started to think about whether I should join another large company or startup on my own. Luckily, I enrolled myself in a management course at IIM Bangalore. Here, I realized that my core strengths are entrepreneurial. I knew I could do something on my own and make it work. That was my aha moment! There was no looking back ever since. I was confident from the beginning. It helped that my friends, family and mentors had huge confidence in me as well. I was going through a bad financial crunch when I started my business, but that didn’t keep me away from starting up. I had faith in my idea and I knew it would pay off soon.
At InforTran, my customers are small and medium businesses. When I started, ERP consulting was a tricky business. In fact, many a time, people had apprehensions about the business being run by a woman as a promoter without any external funding. But with time, we overcame all of those perceptions. My personal motto is to strive for excellence and always maintain the right attitude towards customers.
Being a founder exposes you to your worst weaknesses. When I started out, networking was a huge pain-point for me. I was always in technical operations through my career. Being the front-face of my business was a hard thing to do initially. But the fear of going out of business in the initial days makes you push beyond your own expectations. Today, networking feels like second nature. Another big challenge was that I never did presentations before. But I quickly figured that presentations are not about nicely designed PPTs. They are about your ability to understand the audience/customers, and confidence in your ability and depth of knowledge. Now, I make presentations to my clients almost every week. I realized that being on the edges, being open to learning, accepting your mistakes, learning from your mistakes and quickly moving on are key for you as a professional. Always have the attitude to make things happen for yourself. Don’t wait for someone else to make things work for you. If you want something go for it. Don’t be helpless.
What drives me is the difference we are making to the IT industry and small and medium businesses in India.
We are a 15-people team today. I hire young people with zero to two years of experience. My mantra is to train and groom young professionals. There has not been a single layoff since the time I started. We announced bonuses to employees even when the gross profit made by the company was just 5%. My team’s well being is important to me, and even from a purely selfish perspective, they perform much better when they know that the leadership genuinely cares.I know that we have built a solid foundation for the business, and the aim is to keep growing. I am right now reading Good to Great by Jim Collins. I want to build a great organization.
Today, I feel the opportunities are abundant. If we look around carefully, there is a lot of talent waiting to be employed. Especially, there are many women who are not able to get back to workforce after taking a break during pregnancy. I am looking for such women. I feel many more organizations should come forward and give them an opportunity to work. They tend to be more committed and do great work.
Contact Sindhu for business http://www.infortransolutions.com/