Sitting here in my room at IIFT, overlooking a majestic view of Qutub Minar, it seems like yesterday when Mr. Debu Bhattacharya began his address to Hindalco’s Graduate Engineer Trainee batch of 2016. He put the emphasis on the culture of accountability, mutual respect & support at ABG. Getting an opportunity to begin my corporate journey with ABG’s Hindalco has been one of the most cherished moments of my life. During my two years as an Operations Manager at Hindalco, I was blessed to be a part of a team & culture which puts its employees before everything. During one of the most difficult periods of my life, ABG’s senior leadership extended all forms of support which helped me to remain on-board. During my second phase of training as a GET at Aditya Aluminium in Lapanga, my mother was detected with Stage 3-A Ovarian Cancer. With my sister not willing to take any chances my mother moved to Pune for her treatment. The next couple of months were the toughest for me. Simultaneously, I mailed Corporate HR and enquired if Hindalco Taloja could be a viable location for me, considering my situation. I also directly interacted with Mrs. Pooja Bahuguna, who was a part of our on-boarding process. She helped me secure appointments with the best Oncologists at ABG Memorial hospital at Pune for further treatment & consultation for my mother. This support was invaluable for a young graduate & his family. After getting relocated to Hindalco, Taloja my entire team & manager were extremely understanding of my situation & helped me settle down as I simultaneously tried to balance work & responsibility of my mother’s treatment at Pune. Over the year my mother returned home after completing her treatment at Pune, I completely immersed myself in work. Interacting with the Union, understanding the limits of my equipment & planning metal flow became an indispensable part of my life as an Operations Manager. My work was recognized by the upper management & I was awarded the “STAR YOUNG MANUFACTURING PROFESSIONALS” award by the MD of Hindalco Mr. Satish Pai. Subsequently, I also won the “PRAISE” reward from the senior management at my plant for my work on the shop-floor. As proclaimed by ABG, I did get a World of Opportunities to learn & grow at the organization
Even though I was very satisfied & happy in my role at Hindalco, I still harbored the dreams of doing an MBA from a Premier B School of India. After 3 failed attempts, I finally braced myself for a final shot at my dreams. But as life would have it, during the summer of 2018, I had to take one of the most difficult decisions in my life, one which would have far-reaching consequences in my personal as well as professional life. My mother’s cancer recurred after two years & my father was having difficulties with diabetes. While at work, my Manager and Plant Head at Hindalco Taloja wanted me to shoulder more responsibility to groom me as a future leader. At this pivotal period, torn between my professional & personal obligations I was at my ebb. Hindalco had offered me an amazing opportunity to lead a section & an operations role that I so coveted. I had been recognized by Hindalco’s MD Mr. Satish Pai, & wanted to excel & build a career in the organization. I talked with my mentors and seniors at Hindalco about my situation. They offered me support in the form of a transfer to a plant near my hometown. But it still would have made it difficult for me to take care of my parents & do justice to my role at Hindalco. With a heavy heart, I decided to quit my position at Hindalco. Back at home, I started taking care of my parents, following their medical protocols & researching about alternate medications for their ailments. Simultaneously, I got an opportunity to work with ASRA (Association for Social Reconstructive Activities) an NGO in Jagatsinghpur. Working at old age homes & special schools made me empathetic about real-life problems. These experiences helped me develop as an individual & as a professional. But I still hadn’t given up on my dream of pursuing an MBA from a Premier B School of India. This was a dream I had dedicated 4 years of my life to. To attain it I, maintained a strict schedule & adhered to it. I had to face extremely tough days when my mother’s health & side effects of chemotherapy would make it extremely difficult for me to concentrate, but I kept solving papers & practicing for the D-day. With proper preparation & planning, I managed to get 99.879% in IIFT. I tried to reschedule most of my interviews keeping in mind my mother’s dates of treatment. With the help of my family and admission committees of different colleges, I managed to attend all the calls. Finally, the hard work paid off and I converted IIFT Delhi in the first merit list. The tears of joy & pride in my mother’s eyes amidst her treatment are something I live for. My parents mean the world to me. On 20th June 2019, I left Bhubaneswar with a lot of hopes & promises. Promises of making my mother smile, promises of giving back to ASRA & promises of giving my best each and every single day.
I would love to get another opportunity to work with ABG in any leadership role. My managerial skillset enhanced by IIFT, one of the premier B Schools of India will allow me to contribute & be a valuable addition to the ABG family. #ABG_WooMe