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Ashish Bhatia, COO, Gujarat Circle, Sistema Shyam TeleServices Limited

October 31, 2011
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In his younger days, Ashish Bhatia wanted to operate a chemical factory. Determined to fulfil this ambition, he obtained a degree in chemical engineering from the Lakshminarayan Institute of Technology (LIT) Nagpur.

But then, the corporate world beckoned. He started his career as a production engineer in India Power Corporation Limited, where he worked for nearly two years. He then took a break to pursue an MBA in marketing from the S.P. Jain Institute of Management and Research. Post that, he joined Castrol India, where he worked for seven years in various sales and marketing roles across the country. He then moved to Shell India as regional sales manager, south and east.

He began his telecom innings with Tata Teleservices Limited, where he spent a challenging five years before moving to Sistema Shyam TeleServices Limited (SSTL). Today, as chief operating officer of the Gujarat circle, he is responsible for building its customer service channel and promoting the brand. “The core objective is to service customers effectively and build a sustainable business model,” he says.

What excites him most about his current job is the prospect of building SSTL’s brand in the Gujarat circle. “In the past three years, SSTL has managed to carve a niche for itself in the telecom industry. This has motivated me to do my best and help further grow an organisation that has invested billions of dollars in the business and is a serious telecom player,” he says.

So, what are the challenges and targets before him? “The main tasks on my plate are building up channel infrastructure for the mass retail, enterprise, direct sales teams and direct sales associate machinery to drive our post-paid business. That apart, aligning the entire team to one common goal, driving productivity and enhancing the company’s product portfolio in line with market requirements are vital for our business,” he says.

All this seems a far cry from his childhood ambition. “Life in the corporate world presented me with numerous opportunities to learn from,” he explains. “This made me change my childhood ambition.”

On weekends, Bhatia likes to spend time with family and friends, or watching television and reading books on spirituality and management. What he would like to add to his repertoire is meditation skills, to cope with the multitude of challenges he needs to deal with. “I would love to develop the meditation skills of our ancient gurus to achieve spiritual satisfaction. I believe that satisfaction comes from within and one has to fulfil one’s professional, familial and societal responsibilities to achieve this,” he says.

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