Roshni Nadar of HCL Reveals She Never Touched Excel Before Her MBA

Roshni Nadar, HCL's CEO, went from not knowing Excel in her MBA to leading a tech powerhouse, revealing her unique, inspiring journey

Roshni Nadar of HCL Reveals She Never Touched Excel Before Her MBA

Monday August 21, 2023,

2 min Read

When you think of the CEO of a technological giant, you'd probably imagine someone who's been immersed in technology and its nuances from a young age. But Roshni Nadar's story is a testament to the fact that one's initial circumstances or knowledge don't define success, but rather determination and resilience do.

At the recent Moneycontrol's Indian Family Business Awards 2022, HCL Chairperson, Roshni Nadar, candidly shared a surprising fact about her educational journey. Entering the prestigious Kellogg School of Management to pursue her MBA, Nadar found herself in a unique position.

"I was the only person at business school to never have used an Excel sheet," she remarked. It’s an astonishing admission, considering the reliance of businesses on tools like Excel, more so in the context of someone who would later head one of India's leading technology conglomerates.

Graduating from Kellogg, Nadar's journey was swift yet remarkable. By 2009, she was appointed as the CEO of HCL, a leading multinational IT services company. This rapid ascent wasn't without its challenges. As she describes it, her journey was a "trial by fire."

One would often lean on siblings for support or guidance in such demanding roles, especially in family-run businesses. However, Roshni had no such privilege. "I have no siblings to learn from," she stated, highlighting the unique challenges she faced.

But like every successful individual, Nadar wasn't alone in her journey. She counted on a tight-knit circle of mentors and supporters who guided her along the way. "My parents, my partner, and Srinivasan have been pillars of guidance," she shared.

Roshni Nadar's narrative breaks the mold in multiple ways. From being unfamiliar with a basic business tool like Excel to leading a technological behemoth, her journey is a source of inspiration. It underlines the message that it's not just about where you start but where you aim to go and the zeal with which you pursue your goals. In Nadar’s case, her determination, combined with the right mentorship, helped her conquer unfamiliar terrains with aplomb.

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