Murali Sathya, Global Alliance Director - Financial Services, Atos, reveals how 2 years at GIM laid the foundation for a Global Career in Sales Management.
Murali Sathya knows the career-defining importance of “taking a break”. Currently the Global Alliance Director (Financial Services) at Atos, Murali took his first sabbatical in 1996. He was working as a Senior Sales Executive with ITW - the global diversified manufacturer of engineering and automotive products. It was his second job after engineering - a shift he had made in 1994 in the hope of growing faster. 2 years down the line, he knew he had to do something more than just change jobs in order to climb the corporate ladder. He took a break… and joined Goa Institute of Management for his Master’s in Management.
“My Technical background was good enough in my initial career.?Once I had decided to get into Sales & Marketing, I began to feel the need for a full time PGDM course.?I decided to take a 2 year break to pursue an MBA that would help me chart my career towards senior management roles. Incidentally, like GIM, I had started my professional career in 1992, but Fr. Romuald D'Souza had ensured that GIM attracted the best core and visiting faculty.?Eminent Professors from our days include Prof CM Ramesh, Prof Ranjini, Prof Uday Damodaran, Prof Suma Damodaran, Prof V Gopal. Visiting faculty included eminent corporate professionals like Blaise Costabir and Suzy Singh.”
Even back in 1996, GIM was a melting pot of students from all over India. Murali recalls how the Ribandar residential campus proved to be an excellent place for building relationships with Professors, classmates, seniors and juniors.?The campus overlooked Mandovi River and had direct access to the great Goan outdoors. It was a great place to bond with classmates. The academic rigour at GIM was unrelenting. The fact that his batch had to submit a project every semester, allowed them to immediately put into practice the subject studied in a particular semester. At the end of 2 years, Murali Sathya was in for literally a huge “bonus”.
“My previous employer ITW, offered me quite a jump. Prior to GIM, I was a Senior Sales Executive, and on passing out of GIM I joined as Regional Manager, Sales. At that level, I was the Profit Centre Head for Southern region and responsible for Business Development of all verticals of ITW - Printing, Automotive, consumer durables and FMCG sector.”
For Murali Sathya, those 2 years at GIM turned out to be the kickstart of his career and he never looked back. His next sabbatical came nearly a decade-a-half later, when he took a “break” to move into the Financial space. Egged on by his GIM experience, Murali did his Executive MBA from INSEAD - one of the top B-Schools in the world. In 2012 he was recruited by Atos - the 15 billion dollar IT Services giant, as GM and Market Leader - Financial Services. In 2014 he was elevated to his current position as Global Alliance Director. He works in tandem with the Global Alliance team and the Global Sales organization of Atos. This needs a good understanding of overall strategic direction of the company, choosing the right partners, and aligning the partnership strategy to the needs of Global Banking & Insurance customers.
“Whether it is a short stint or a long duration I strongly believe in ensuring that my employer derives maximum value from me. It is a “GIM thing” you know. More than anything else, GIM helps you get the right attitude. This becomes increasingly important as you grow in your career. It has helped me focus on technology for Financial services.Accumulating this knowledge over a period of time has paid off in the long run.”
Murali advises the young guns at GIM to Dream big, work hard and be THE expert in their field.“Let your work speak for you,” he says before signing off.