Mafia India CEO: Techies with a social heart

BENGALURU: Some start calling it India Mafia, like PayPal Mafia. The latter was used to describe former PayPal employees and founders who founded and developed other technology companies such as Tesla, LinkedIn, Palantir, SpaceX, YouTube, Yelp and Yammer.

India Mafia (head of Microsoft), Sundar Pichai (Google), Shantanu Narayen (Adobe), Sanjay Mehrotra (Micron), Nikesh Arora (Palo Alto Networks), (NetApp) and now (IBM) are leading some of the companies largest technology companies in the world. There are also others, such as Thomas Kurian, CEO of Google Cloud, and Sanjay Poonen, COO of VMware. And, of course, the last appointment at WeWork.

What makes the Indians so good in technological leadership? Vivek Wadhwa, a distinguished member of the engineering faculty of Carnegie Mellon University in Silicon Valley, says that the combination of formidable technical skills with great business acumen and management skills has allowed Nadella and Pichai to build the most valuable companies in the world.



Live plus But what people don't realize is that they also have something that is generally lacking in the world of technology: a sense of humility and understanding of human needs. Too many Silicon Valley leaders have grown in their bubble, they are isolated from the realities of the world. They are lucky and begin to believe they are gods. This is not a problem that the native leaders of India have, ”he said.

Something similar was pointed out by The Wall Street Journal in 2015 when it quoted a then recent cross-cultural study from Southern New Hampshire University that examined managers from the US and India. The study found that plus Indian managers achieved the highest ranking in terms of leadership traits. Indian managers, the study said, are future-oriented, and had a “paradoxical blend of genuine personal humility and intense professional will...These leaders achieved extraordinary results and built great organisations without much hoopla.”

Vijay Govindarajan, a distinguished professor of Coxe en Tuck in Dartmouth, also says that to lead in today's world, a CEO must embody social heart, entrepreneurial mind. American Indians have the ability to cultivate this, ”he says.

Indian CEOs are considered to have a strange ability to detect the new and convert disagreements and disagreements within the company to prepare it for the future. , Marketing Professor at Lee Kong Chian at Singapore Management University, calls it the senior management team browning. Kumar says that given the huge technological disruptions that are occurring, companies are looking for CEOs who understand the evolving technology landscape and combine it with the market vision.

“It is easier to teach a technologist about markets and sales compared to bringing a marketing/sales person up to speed on technology. Previously, we needed CEOs with sales capability and an understanding of finance to compete in relatively undifferentiated, slow-moving markets,” he says. All of the India leaders built their careers as technologists, before getting into the sales and marketing side. Krishna, for instance, was a researcher for much of his career, and has co-authored 15 patents. Govindarajan says since every company is a digital company today, he expects plus and plus technologist CEOs, since domain knowledge is key for leading an enterprise.

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