Raghu Kolath of FabFurnish has been nominated as the Awesome Startup Employee by the Founders Mehul Agrawal and Vikram Chopra.
Raghu joined FabFurnish in May 2012. He has been at FabFurnish for the last two years. His role involves anything and everything to do with customers. “Operating on a business owner model, I am responsible for operations, hiring, training and quality of the entire customer service set up. Being from a customer care background, it is my responsibility to ensure a delightful experience for each and every customer. This involves streamlining and monitoring processes on a continual basis and understanding and ensuring quick and smooth redressal of their complaints and feedbacks.”
What Raghu loves the most about his role is the challenge and scope it gives to him to develop people.
Raghu truly resonates with the culture and values of FabFurninsh. Mehul Agarwal says, “Customer centricity, integrity and a passion to redefine ‘home’ are core to what FabFurnish stands for, and Raghu truly epitomizes each of these elements. Raghu defines customer centricity in a way like no one else can. His enthusiasm drives the entire team to stand up for his values and make him proud which in-turn leads to unparalleled customer service.” Raghu’s most amazing quality is that he never gives up. Mehul says, “If he has given his word — be it to a customer or an employee or any of his superiors — he will do whatever it takes to keep it. His dependability is his biggest strength.”
Raghu has previously worked with organisations like Vanguard, Convergys and Sitel, which are high standard employee-oriented organizations where processes are set and are demanding. “Being a startup, FabFurnish was different. We had to make, streamline and monitor processes, which was a challenge. Customer care team is the voice of FabFurnish, so the process demands high accuracy and precision. Sale of furniture online is a relatively new concept in e-commerce industry, so the problems we faced were also new and unknown. But I can say with confidence today that we have evolved. And our team is one of the best in the industry.”
Mehul adds, “Raghu has led multiple levels of development and implementation of our ticketing and CRM system. In fact, he pushed a lot to be involved into the operation of Warehouse ERP systems too and that is fascinating and inspirational.”
A secret Mehul shares about Raghu is that, “Raghu loves FabFurnish so much that he actually found the love of his life here. He is getting married in August!”
The journey has been quite an experience. The team is young, energetic and open-minded and feedbacks are warmly welcomed. The customer care team has evolved over time. We have reached a different level altogether, but we still have a long way to go.
The company has grown manifold. All the different verticals have grown, including Customer Service unit. The culture has evolved with time too. “We always have been an employee centric organization and truly believe that a happy employee is a happy customer. We promote an environment wherein every individual is encouraged to think freely, articulate and believe that they can bring in change,” says Raghu.
According to Raghu, “The culture of FabFurnish is focused on four major elements — team work, respect, integrity, and service excellence. We value team accomplishments and we promote an environment where we treat each other with respect, fairness and dignity. We value integrity in everything we do. We strive to exceed our customer’s expectations by delivering superior customer experience. We are steadfast in our unwavering pursuit of excellence.”
Raghu shares an amazing bond with his colleagues. He says, “The bond is not just limited to work and office. With my team I am demanding and friendly.” He shares a warm bond with both the founders who are very open to new ideas and very open to feedback.
One of the defining moments of his life was getting through to Convergys as team leader. Just before joining Convergys, Raghu had been appointed the team leader in his previous company but as the company shut down soon after Raghu’s role became short lived. Convergys gave him that second chance to be the lead and this time with a lot more people in the team than his previous company. “This was when I started believing in myself. This made a huge difference as to how I saw myself. Well thereafter there has been no looking back,” he says.
Raghu has many other team leaders who report to him and he is as always doing a great job of leading. Raghu believes,
That you do not need extraordinary people, you need ordinary people who can do great work to make a great team. Everyone has something good, you just need to look for it and tap that potential.
“I would definitely recommend startups to people. It is only at startups that you have ample scope to explore your talent. Your role is not just limited to your work. There is no boundary to your reach. Also, only in a startup do you get to see the end to end process, as you are involved in the making of the process. This clear understanding you get only in startups. All this obviously results in a bonding which is beyond office and working hours; you feel connected with the company and the people.
Family, few friends and work define his life. “As I love my work, work-life balance is well managed,” he smiles and says. He loves to read anything he can lay his hands on. He loves reading books on leadership and great leaders. He is also a movie buff and a keen follower of sports. Raghu is a die-hard fan of Sachin Tendulkar. Watching and reading about Sachin Tendulkar, be it e-books and videos gives him much joy.Raghu says, “He is someone who energizes me to the core.”
His message to his team is,
In a short span of time, FabFurnish has made a mark in the industry and we are one of the best. Watch out how we become the best and be a part of this journey.
Raghu sends out a great message to the world, “If you like challenges, love freedom and truly want to explore your talents and test your limits, startups are meant for you. Those who are already in the startup ecosystem know what I mean.”
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