Ever thought in your wildest dreams, a possibility of towing an iceberg from the Antarctic and turning it into drinking water; or to eat a product packaging rather throw it away thereby containing waste disposal; or to convert your home into a fashion house enjoying the opportunity to maintain a personal contact with the world’s best fashion designers. Turning these dreams and many others into reality is the world’s 3D Experience Company - Dassault Systemes (pronounced as Dasso Systemes). It proclaims to be a scientific software company. This is a company which is the world leader in 3D simulation and modelling.
I did my summer internship at Dasso’s Bangalore office in India. Renowned as the Silicon Valley of India, a place which propagates the energetic vibes of India’s youth, one which offers umpteen options to hangout after office, and treats you with much needed small distance drives on weekends to reside amidst the nature (read Nandi Hills), Bangalore undoubtedly provides a complete picture of that ideal work-life cycle and is rightly the best place to work!
I was offered a role of Sales Consulting and the internship started right at 9 am on April 1st. Unlike my friends at IIM Kashipur and other B-schools who did their sales assignments under the scorching heat, trying to get the details hidden in the preferences of that rural Indian consumer, I was lucky to find myself in an air conditioned office mostly interacting to those blue collared corporate guys. And gosh!! Can an office address be better than this – Dassault Systemes office is at Leela Palace, yes the 5-star luxury hotel in Bangalore. For a period of 2 months, my facebook updates used to be seen with those wide-round-open eyes cutely depicted by a whatsapp emoticon - surprised and bemused!!
The initial week started with the regular induction programme, bombardment of information regarding the Dassault family, the 12 industries it caters to and its 10 offerings around the world – these French guys have really created a sustainable advantage for themselves frequently changing the game of the industry, with the fourth one being rolled out across the world while I was there. Some of the most successful Indian companies in the automobile, FMCG, defence, information technology sector are Dasso’s clients. My work pertained to the Financial & Business Services vertical. I was given the task to strategically help the Indian IT cos in widening their portfolio of business solutions using Dasso products. Amongst my many prospective customers was Infosys. Once an employer was now my customer, well someone rightly said – leave your ex-employer in good terms. I interacted with managers at the companies assigned to me – connected with them through LinkedIn, cold calls and managed a few personal meetings. I quickly realized one thing, written large and loud on their face – ‘I don’t have time to see any crazy salesman, I have a battle to fight!’ The first month passed collecting and understanding the current solutions being provided by these clients and contemplating a framework to gauge the expected response of the client to our products. Interactions with the Business Experience Consultants at Dasso was very insightful, always having an ear to listen to our suggestions, our case study based classes, trying to get some information from our prior work experience.
But actually it was not just ‘work’ at Dasso. As Jim Collins reflects in his book ‘Built to Last’ – you love the work you do because you love the people you work with. Dasso once also provided me an opportunity to listen and meet the stalwarts behind the Agni, Brahmos and Light Combat Aircraft which we only see during the Republic day parade on National channel – and yes these people have hairs, probably uncombed, like Einstein, our depiction of a scientist. I was also fortunate to attend a business meeting with Dasso’s value partners at an exotic resort. It was sheer business, a focus group session to let the partners know the expectations over the next financial year.
I also managed to encourage my mentor and other people at work for the game of table tennis, the table otherwise lying unused. An environment of stiff competition used to build up in the recreation space every working day by 5 pm. I retrospect how restless I used to turn as the dials of the clock rotated to hit 5 and how successfully I convinced my mentor not to expect anything for the one hour starting 5 pm. At 6 pm I used to hit back at the Lenovo Thinkpad which was provided.
And It All Ended
The second month went discussing with my mentor - the plans, frameworks, solutions and time-bound approach to implement a few. With frequent presentations over the last 15 days, I started preparing my intern report. On 30th of June, the last day of internship, our office was celebrating the ‘Kids at Work’ day, and I had to somehow get my report signed and my college formalities filled. Truly, in the two months, I never saw my mentor work as hard as he did managing our little Sonakshi, my mentor’s daughter. I joined a new family, the Dasso family, thanks to my internship. No matter where you work, for whom you work, and at what profile your work, it’s those two months which help you show the people at work, what sets you apart as a knowledgeable, yet humble person studying at one of the best B-school of the country.