Fri, August 14, 2020

Anticipate. Adapt. Accelerate. – Mr. Suraj Thodimarath

Mr.Suraj Thodimarath, the leader at the centre of energy hub in the competitive work environment at Wittur Elevator Components India Pvt. Ltd., Sriperumbudur, is a person of vigour and valour who thrives on challenges. Being the MD of the successful establishment, he is setting newer thought dimensions in business management with a cumulative vision that encompasses success in both the “business front” and the “people front”. He is a reflection of his forward thinking with a constant watch for newness, always asking – what’s next?

The more I learn, the more I feel challenged”, expresses our inspiring leader.

Still holding to the timeless energy of the 20 year-old that he started his career as, our inspiring leader is an embodiment of dynamism and multi-field expertise, who constantly surprises us with his inspiring ideologies.

THE DEFINITION: Truth of Leadership

“A leader is a combination of Trust, Ethics and Team Building”

Our inspiring leader believes that leadership is a chain of qualities from ethics to team building, ultimately gaining the trust of the employees and the customers. With a philosophy weighing on followership and leadership, he states that a leader is the one who cares for his people with an ethical approach and nurturing attitude, sowing the seeds of trust in a person. He focuses on “offering a career” over “offering a job” where it is the attitude and abilities that people are hired for, and not a mere qualification. His ideologies are aimed towards recognizing the strength of the workforce, grooming and mentoring it, so that people can bring disparate ideas together and deliver it altogether as ‘One Team’.

“Treat everything on its own merit and always be open to new ideas” he says.

When coupled with a strict work ethics, this ideology transcends to the truth of leadership – A 360 degree vision.

“A leader makes a team go from ‘performing well’ to ‘consistently performing well’”, he states.

THE CHOICE: Lead or Lead an Example?

“Leading an example isn’t all about Corporate Jargon”

Throwing light on practicality, Mr. Suraj unveils that “leading” and “leading by example”are far set. He believes that the workforce adopts practices from the leaders and learns from them, which ultimately revolves around how the leaders “live it and show it”.

“When people see an example, they associate with it.”

As a man of inspiration for all people, from the shop floor till the junior and senior management, Mr.Suraj Thodimarath has “lived” his philosophies, making him symbolize leadership that goes beyond organizational structure.

THE CHALLENGE: A Question of Culture and Compatibility

“A transformation doesn’t happen overnight”

If patience is the key to leadership, Mr Suraj wins it with his philosophies. He puts it out that everything needs time, be it the ‘change in workflow’ or the ‘change in workforce’. According to him, the talent pool largely revolves around every individual’s compatibility with the work culture of the organization.  People who are in sync with the values that the company cherishes, usually tend to resonate with other members of the team and thus, contribute better to the organization’s success.

“A talent or cultural misfit can become the weakest the link in workchain” he says.

Amidst the compatibility with the work culture, he suggests that a person must also be in sync with the direction in which the company is headed. Having worked in multiple industries himself, he strongly believes that a leader must leverage the talent of the individuals with the value system of an organization, to inspire a strong sense of self-motivation within the team. Thus, having the right people in the right place is extremely important to maximize the growth curve.

“It is only when the people are culturally well-set that the organization becomes best-set to maximize its growth potential” elaborates our leader.

THE VISION: An Organizational View

“Strategies are decided by leaders and formulated along with the team”

With business credentials from Harvard and a Lead Manufacturing certification from the University of Michigan, Mr. Suraj has acquired qualifications that help him take up challenging assignments, which has in turn helped him hone his skills at Transformational Leadership.  Delivering a CAGR of 22% growth in the last 5 years has not tired the leader from the vision of even greater growth in the future. He has simplified his vast vision with strategic plans that are understandable and implementable at every level of the organization.  This is done by the Strategy Deployment process where a 5-year plan is converted into measurable progress year-on-year. Extending practicality with the mathematical parameter of growth, he has deployed special tools for converting strategies into tangible results.

The leader simplifies the success formula as:

“Formulate strategies with team, break it into do-able elements, spread it across different years, execute what needs to be done this year, while also preparing for the year after”.

Mr. SURAJ THODIMARATH, M.D., Wittur Elevator Components

He believes that such an approach becomes a cumulative effort of the team, where the broad strategy umbrella is opened up by the leaders, but it is the team that gives it a form.

According to him, this “CONCEPTUALISE, DEVICE, STRUCTURE, DEPLOY rule for strategies” encompasses the multiple pillars of the company including market, employees, customers, product portfolio, manufacturing process, investments etc., making the team fully aware of the market trends, to help chart the course for maximum growth.

“More than adaptation to the trends, it is about anticipation of the trends” he summarizes.

In addition to the strong professional attitude that makes this leader stand tall as our inspiration, it is his inherent values and personality that stood out to us, as the strength behind his vision and ideologies.

Read more about his vivid personality in the part II of the article.

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