CEO City

Viswanath Sivaswamy

Viswanath Sivaswamy

MD –
Keys to Effective Leadership:
  •   A great vision that the leader can articulate.
  •   The ability to pull together a team to rally around the vision.
  •   The ability to consistently deliver expectations of stakeholders.
Views on Leadership and means to Achieve it:
Consistency is the key to every performance. Consistency reduces risk for all stakeholders associated with the organization. Setting realistic expectations and motivating the team to achieve it is my method of achieving performance. Without a motivated team, the leader cannot succeed.

Tools to Motivate Yourself and Others:
The sense of achievement and victory motivates me. I compete to win and love to win. I think that motivates many in the world. So I motivate troops by helping them win/make them winners. That feeling is contagious.

Gist of Your Leadership Role Over the Years:
Doer – Organizer – Thinker to leader. That is how I would categorize my evolution during the last 20 years. Along the way I learnt to apply what I read. For me, management is not a theory. I believe that it is always practiced and experienced by someone somewhere. I just need to tweak it to apply and that tweak is what the leader does.

Finally, over the years I learnt that there are principles by which leaders have to live / lead the world. My principles have been - Simplicity. Tenacity. Passion. Leaders have to simplify for others to understand and follow. Leaders never give up. They learn from failures but never give up. Passionate execution makes it complete.

Avoiding Mistakes - Connecting the Dots:
I am yet to come across leaders who havent made mistakes. My endeavor is to avoid the same mistake. That is stupidity.

In this fast changing world, it is almost impossible to see all the dots. You only get to see a few and have to quickly connect the dots and create your own pattern (markets). Learning and adapting to create patterns from the ever-moving dots is the key.

Role Model:
Mahatma Gandhi. The great man could move millions of people around the country to fight for independence through his method – Non-violence. If he courted arrest, millions did. If he fasted, millions did. In an age where communication was almost non-existent, to get millions of followers is phenomenal. Foe me, there isnt a greater leader than MK Gandhi.

Lessons Learnt on the Way:
I learnt my first leadership lesson from my first boss. When I made a big pricing mistake and we won a "loss" deal, I thought I would be fired by our GM. My manager stepped in and took the ownership of my mistake. From that day, he has my loyalty forever.

Achievement You Pride Yourself:
Professionally - Building ConJoin from almost zero dollars to $250 million in 4.5 years
Personally - Funding the education of some brilliant but financially under-privileged kids

Foresight of Yourself and Your Company:
We will be the largest IT / BPO Services Company focused solely on healthcare providers. We will serve our customers with as much pride and care as they serve their patients.

Macroeconomic Variables that You Look Out for:

There are three variables - US GDP growth, India GDP growth and US dollar to rupee exchange rate.

Fostering Innovation:
To me innovation is not only inventing the iPod. At the end of a long day, I ask myself and urge my teams to think, "Did we do anything different today from yesterday?" When the answer is a YES, we have innovated for that day.

Attaining Success through Adversity:
Adversities provide opportunities for learning. They invariably force you to stop, think and come up with options. This is also when I pull my team together to find a solution. That additionally bonds the team together.

Desire to Change Past:
Hardly anything would be different. I am quite happy with the way things turned out. I believe in evolution-revolution. Only a few things can be revolutionary, most things in the world evolve. So I would not try to change anything from my past.

Suggestions on Effective Leadership:
Use principles to explain situations. You will always find solutions. Every adversity is a conflict resolving activity. When you resolve conflicts for your teams, teams perform better. Anticipate the conflicting issues; educate the team on resolution techniques.

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