Image: Mexy Xavier
An interest in marketing and content writing took Bansi Raja to Gozoop—a digital marketing company co-founded in 2008 by Rohan Bhansali and Ahmed Naqvi—in December 2011. Raja, who did her Bachelor of Mass Media (BMM) in advertising, joined as a content writer. The hiring and employee activities were handled by Bhansali and Raja started pitching in. Soon she found herself moving full-time to handle the firm’s human resources (HR) department.
The company, says Raja, didn’t want a conventional HR person, so she was designated as chief happiness officer. “The thought mainly was that HR sounds very boring and non-approachable,” says Raja who, seven years later, heads a team of five for the overall company team of 175 people. “Most companies have three HR staff for 300-400 people. Over the years we have managed to find good, strong people in the team that believe in redefining HR and doing things differently than what other people in the industry are doing,” she says.
The company has several initiatives for employees. “For example, every month we have a counsellor in office. She spends the day with us, and people discuss personal and professional issues with her.” Other initiatives include mental wellness leave, menstrual leave, not insisting on clocking nine hours and helping employees keep a good balance between personal and professional life.
Her background in marketing and content writing makes her job easier since she knows exactly what the job involves. “Through my educational background, it’s easier to take care of the recruitment process because when I am interviewing someone I know exactly what is it they do.” On the flip side, not having a background in HR can sometimes prove a challenge. “For me, personally, what’s been challenging is to earn credibility without the formal education system of HR, and still being able to achieve the results that we are achieving today,” says Raja.
Her instincts and people skills seem to stand her in good stead. “Once, we had to let someone go because of performance issues, but the employee was genuinely a nice person and the letting go was done very gracefully… it’s been a year-and-a-half now, but the person is still in touch and reaches out to me to discuss issues. So it’s about building great relationships.”
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(This story appears in the 10 May, 2019 issue of Forbes India. To visit our Archives, click here.)