"Self-blame or self-pity in tough circumstances stops women from becoming leaders"
Having been in the finance field was not an easy task; but she took it as a challenge and today she is the Founder-Director of Avaali Solutions. We are talking about Srividya Kannan whose office cabin wall poster depicts the life she is leading with words written “Dream Big & make it Possible”.
“I’ve always wanted to challenge myself. I’m never happy with easy, very predictable jobs. Right from early on in my career until today, I’m in my best flow when the task is uphill and when something difficult needs to be done. I’ve got involved early in my career to collect over 300 crores in bad debts by filing civil, criminal suits and attaching properties. I used to spend most of my days in courts and with law firms. Everyone thought it was not appropriate for me to be doing such “manly” jobs, but I was simply excited to collect these long pending outstandings from defaulters.”
Let us know more about her…
Born to a middle-class family, in a family of five, we led a simple but very positive lifestyle. My parents imbibed us with great values early in our childhood. My husband Kannan, my beloved teenage daughter and my lovely golden retriever make my life complete. I’m fortunate to have a great person to help with our domestic chores who is more now part of our family.
I completed my post-graduation in Business Management from Mumbai after my Bachelors Degree in Commerce. I also simultaneously completed my Cost Accounting from Institute of Cost and Works Accountants.
PRINCIPLE IN LIFE
There is no magic potion, only hard work and persistence will lead to results
FASCINATION FOR IT FIELD
I started my career in the hard-core finance space. In working with various enterprises, I realized the huge opportunity with technology, back in early 2000’s. In those days, even internet, networking and hardware infrastructure was exciting, with the immense possibilities to shrink geographies and get people together. I was fortunate to get some great opportunities in the IT consulting and services sector when I switched over to manage IT sales for the financial services sector.
When I first moved from finance to IT sales, I took on the responsibility to handle two large banking accounts – one of which had blacklisted the company and never did business with us for over 10 years. We won a large engagement there in the first 12 months of my engagement. I’ve done a variety of roles from finance, IT sales, partners and alliances, business operations, to internal training and enablement and competitive intelligence. Every role I chose were the ones which had a fair share of challenges or where something new was needed to be built. With so many experiences, my life has been full of learnings and continual growth. After all, without these, there is no meaning of any achievement.
MOTTO FOR SUCCESS AT WORKPLACE
Focus on delivering the job no matter what. You can either deliver results or can give reasons. Work is like meditation, when the mind is fully focused, results will have to come.
STRATEGIES WITH WOMEN CAN ACHIEVE A MORE PROMINENT ROLE IN ORGANIZATIONS
As much as I think about it, the passion towards ones’ goals and never say die attitude needs to be very strong. Family support is imperative without which progress is very difficult. Hence, it is important to share our goals with our family and get them on our side. It is equally important to keep a back-up support system handy at all times to support on the home-front.
Networking and establishing good connections is important to success. Learning effective leadership is an iterative process and is like learning any skill – it requires persistence and willingness to learn from failures. When circumstances are tough, there is a tendency for women to indulge in selfblame or self-pity. This is the first thing that needs to be taken off from the mind. Integrating leadership into one’s core identity is important and is an iterative process. When the purpose, passion and will is strong, success will have to follow.
ONE LEADERSHIP LESSON LEARNT
Building a core team who carry strong passion and purpose is imperative. Nothing can ever be achieved in isolation.
THOUGHT FOR DIFFICULT TIMES
I try to focus on all the positives – even in difficult times, there is always something positive that can be counted.
ADVICE FOR BUDDING ENTRE PRENEURS
Keep the energy going, with persistence comes success.
SRIVIDYA KANNAN, Founder-Director of Avaali Solutions