Dr. Tanvi works with firms across the globe to create more authentic, engaged and inclusive leaders and work cultures. She is on the board of ARTDO (international) and an invited member to the elite leadership think tank of Corporate Executive Board (The leadership transition institute – USA). list of clients include firms like Microsoft, Exxon, Dell, Medtronics, TNT, Accenture, Verizon among others.
She is honored to be a recipient of the
* Game Changer 2014 award by Workforce Magazine (USA),
* The change leaders of tomorrow award by the Asian Thought leadership conference,
* Recognized as Top 10 HR influencers on Social media by SHRM-I.
Recognized as one of the women HR leaders to reckon with by the Business manager magazine my views on creating the workplace of tomorrow have been quoted and published by international forums such as Harvard Business Review, Forbes.com, Business Times and Economic Times. Worked/taught in 3 different continents & enjoyed the commonalities of the human experience every where. Associated with Universities in Asia & US (Virginia Commonwealth Univ; University of Richmond; Singapore Management Univ)
Dr. Tanvi speaks about various aspects and challenges of HR along with insights on Millennials in an interview with Wenger & Watson Inc.
Q: The 1st Job always holds a special place for an individual, where did you start your career? Could you share your learnings of your 1st job?
A: My first company was TCS corporate office in Mumbai. I was part of the allocation team looking at projects in the US. What was apparent to me from day one, was that if I was to be taken seriously as an HR person, I had to learn to speak the language of business and technology overnight; which I did! I actually attended some basic onboarding classes we had for engineers, not just to acquire their language but, see the world from their viewpoint and get a handle on how they saw the business.
Q: As an individual gains experience, they are given people management responsibility. Can you recollect who was your 1streportee & the experience of handling your 1st team?
A: I had a SWAT team approach to managing my team at first! If someone came to me with a problem, I thought it was my job to solve it. The truth is, if you want your team to develop, you have to provide them with the resources and the inspiration and then stand back and watch the magic unfold. The most powerful words you can use with the team is – What do ‘you’ think we should do ? If you trust people to do their best, they rise to the challenge.
Q: As Millennials join the workforce, what are the proactive steps that an organization should take, to be relevant in the employer market?
A: The companies that will be relevant to the millennials are the ones who embrace the concept of the ‘workforce of one’. Be that benefits, career paths or performance reviews, the millennials are not interested in your ‘one size fits all’ scheme. To recognize, honor and celebrate their individuality and their gift is important to them. I believe the millennials will move the needle on bringing ”humans” back into the human resources conversation.
Q: In all these years of service, can you share with us, one of the toughest situations you have had to face at your workplace?
A: There have been many. I have been blessed with mentors who have walked with me and guided me in the process. During my early career days, I was working for someone who was a toxic leader and it took a lot to hold onto the mastery of who I was. I emerged stronger from the experience and since then, it has guided a lot of my work with leaders on creating authentic and inclusive work environments.
Q: How has HR intervention changed from the day you started your career to now? (wrt employee engagement, retention, recruitment and policies)?
A: HR is in the midst of reinventing itself. It is always tough to let go of the old paradigm and embrace a new one but it has to be done. HR today, is moving from being a custodian of a process to being a custodian of the potential of the firm and its future. It is a role that some grasp better than others. Technology is presenting a huge opportunity to move beyond traditional HR roles. HR was largely a reactive role and it has to now be more proactive in managing all aspects, from recruitment to retrenchment. The biggest opportunity today, is to reinvent HR for a purpose driven workplace.
Q: What has been your biggest accomplishment so far?
A: All accomplishments are special for their own reasons. I believe that the work I do through leadershift has enabled many leaders to look at how they think of their role as leaders differently. Hosting Asia’s first and only internationally trending twitter chat for leaders – www.ihrchat.com has been an honor for 4th year running now. Building community around ideas that matter is my biggest accomplishment. Winning the Game Changer award from Workforce Magazine (USA) was also a big highlight for me. I was being quoted more than once in Harvard Business Review. It was a sign that my ideas have an impact and I am grateful for that!
Q: Finally, Your views on the traits that a new age recruiter should have?
A: We are in an era where top talent has a choice. Recruiters, no longer, can be focussed on closing a position, they have to be in a position of creating a relationship with potential hires. A keen eye for talent, combined with relationship skills and an ability to leverage both digital and social technologies, makes for a powerful combination. The thing that recruiters have to be mindful of, is to not harbour biases about what talent looks or behaves like. Also, creating more inclusive recruitment profiles to include people with special needs or those with non-traditional profiles is a skill recruiters should cultivate. In the era of talent crunch, you cannot afford to define your pool in a narrow manner.
Dr Tanvi, Thank you for sharing your experiences and perspectives.