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A TCS career is like an MF investment: Rajesh Gopinathan

From building an innovation culture to investing in internal talent, the CEO &MD of TCS speaks about his big plans. Edited excerpts

Harichandan Arakali
Published: Sep 15, 2021 01:22:57 PM IST
Updated: Sep 15, 2021 01:33:36 PM IST

A TCS career is like an MF investment: Rajesh GopinathanTCS CEO & MD Rajesh Gopinathan
Image: Mexy Xavier

On breeding an innovation culture

TCS has always been a very entrepreneurial company, with a wide range of interests and a fairly open-ended canvas on what people are allowed to do. We continue to be that. We are quite broad-based in our approach and the culture has been kept that way. What we have brought in is much more traceability of what is going on. Therefore, [there is] the element of transparency and predictability to it. Being able to maintain that innovative culture, but bring in the predictability that allows us to bring an objective view in front of the financial markets, has helped us a lot in the way we have scaled.

On agile, automation and cloud

These three things are supposed to disrupt the industry. In fact, in some circles, it was felt that companies like ourselves will become irrelevant because these three trends will blow us away. We took a very proactive approach to it. We said that we are going to be on top of these three, and we are going to integrate these into our operating model, rather than get disrupted or disintermediated by these three changes.

On talent acquisition

When we recruit people, what we value ensures that there is a straight line from who we recruit to who runs the company. We say a career at TCS is like mutual fund investment. There might be opportunities to trade and make money on the wider market and there will be some people who will get rich very quickly. But, there will be a set of people for who the steady compounding of funds will yield better results.

On investing in internal talent

Internally trained resources meet 95 percent of our digital needs. The point is not that we are able to manage it internally. The point is that, as a company, we believe our people should get the first right of refusal for every new thing that happens in the company, whether at the leadership level or at the junior [level]. Because they have trusted the company. If they are going to have a 40-year career [with TCS], there are going to be four-eight changes in technology. They need to be able to trust that the company will make sure they are going to be invested in, training them so that they will make that jump every time.

(This story appears in the 24 September, 2021 issue of Forbes India. To visit our Archives, click here.)

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