Be an Influencing Leader, not a Strict BOSS
Visionaries with veracious steering wheels are the power behind the success of the organization and the boosterism of employees’ morale. Transcending the title of ‘leader’ or ‘Boss’, these potent doers head the organization towards triumphant journeys. Dedication, commitment, decency, and effective leadership are some of the factors that are responsible for the longevity of a thriving organization.
Bolstering oneself, the organization, and the team is what a proficient leader does. Efficient communication with a strong vision to accelerate the company’s growth and hoist employees’ performance is a must in any organization. Employees are the most valuable assets of any organization because, without them, a company bears losses. Employees’ high-level performances are also determined by their supervisors and managerial teams.
Rolling Plans Pvt. Ltd (RPPL), a consulting firm with an intensity of providing multiple services, recently launched Rolling Nexus, a professional networking site, an online hub for jobs, tenders, skills assessment tests, and many more. Mr. Gyan Raj Panthi, Chief Operating Officer at RPPL, shares that an effective leader can only drive the employees towards organizational goals. Let’s dig up about his caliber and leadership skills for boosting employees’ morale and performance. Excerpts:
1. When did you join RPPL and how did you know about the organization?
I came to know about Rolling Plans through my friend as my friend recommended me for the job at Call Center. I never had to look back from that day. I took the shot and applied for the vacant post. I joined RPPL on December 10, 2010, as an outsourcing staff for NCELL Call Center in the position of Customer Service Representative.
2. Please tell us about yourself, your strengths to cope with the situations, management style, and communication patterns with team members as GM - HR & Operations Manager before and Chief Operating Officer (COO) now.
Talking about my management style, it is very simple. I prefer not doing ups and downs but I prefer the same hierarchy, opportunities for my colleagues and associates. Working safely in a transparent, fair, and self-conditioning environment with one hundred percent dedication, commitment, and involvement with full focus is my working Mantra.
I worked as a Marketing Executive for RPPL for almost one year. When I started my journey in RPPL as a customer care employee, I was eventually upgraded to Project In-charge of the Rolling Contact Center/NCELL Call center. Speaking about my strengths, I did a lot of research on the market due to my working field and I think I know the people from ground level. It’s generally hard to find the expectations of the middle and the low-level staff. Due to my extensive research, I can relate and observe them and find out their expectations from the company, their requirements to reach the company goals.
I believe I have fulfilled my responsibility as a bridge for management and employees. With almost 8+ more years of experience in HR, I worked out as a mediator for the fraternity of HR. I handled over 250 agents while working in the Rolling Contact Center and the experiences I gained from previous tasks made me efficient to make correct decisions on the hiring of the right people for the right job. I have taken numerous interviews over my lifetime and I am sure of the people who are best suitable for the jobs.
I always tell my employees that my doors are always open for them for any kind of suggestions, feedback, and grievances. Teamwork is not a single man job and I believe teamwork is a key to my management style and communication plays a pivotal role in this. I prefer formal and informal communication patterns but I always articulate to my team that to avoid any conundrums, they should at least come and talk to me about my expectations towards the results, their way of performing to eradicate the information gap.
And I don’t prefer to be called a BOSS but I prefer to transcend the title of a leader who leads the team with the support of each others’ ideas, boosting their morale and motivating them. Two major things that I prefer are proactiveness and a learning attitude. I strongly believe that Learning never stops even if we are old. Even though I am also learning with my jobs and how much we become experienced, new things are always coming in the market. And we have to be updated every time.
3. What does your ideal work environment look like?
In my view, an ideal working environment looks culturally developed, open, and approachable. I should be approachable to any kind of support, any kind of coordination for the employees, for the stakeholders, clients at any time. It should be a two-way working environment. It should be abided culturally with rules and regulations and we need to understand that if someone is paying for us, we need to address the expectations of the company and we need to herd our efforts to give the company something great in return. It should look like a liberal and democratic way as I believe my colleagues and associates have the right to speak, the right to take any actions, and they can come up to me for any queries to resolve the things.
4. What are the qualities that you look for in a new hire? Please tell us about your hiring approach.
I prefer the interviewees who are well-prepared because it catches me a lot. It’s not about coming up for an interview, introducing oneself, and speaking about “I am here about learning and experience”. They should never speak those words. I always want to see the caliber and real spark of the candidates. I have no barriers to hiring the right candidates. My hiring approach is based upon the competencies and capabilities of the candidates. Personality, attitude, and commitment that I want to look upon the candidates. They should know that this company will drive them towards growth and the company will provide learning opportunities. I strongly admire the candidates with such positive vibes.
5. How do you determine priorities in your role?
I always segregate my work by being focused on deadlines. As our organization is a client-based service industry, we need to focus more on our customers. We need to stay proactive in taking actions efficiently and speedily in this competitive market. I have multiple roles as HR, secretary handling client-related projects, and working on so many proposals requiring setting deadlines. When you set Standard Operating Procedure(SOP), it starts working in the higher-level form, and you can achieve your goals in no time.
6. How would you handle extreme situations with your employees?
First of all, I start a conversation with the person who has made a mistake, try to figure out the reason behind it, and sort out the situation. If any of my employees fail it means that I have failed in some manner. If I have to pertain to any rules and regulations, first of all, I need to set an example that yes I do follow the rules and they can look up to me or it will go haywire, otherwise. I am inclined towards two-way conversation to calm such extreme situations.
7. What employee benefits/perks do you believe are best at driving engagement, retention, and satisfaction?
I believe monetary gain is not everything. Employees should be work-motivated rather than money-motivated. The best thing that can drive commitment and higher engagement is I believe a conditional working environment with flexibility. A working module should always be a two-way aspect encompassing both management and employees. If anyone wants to join the company, they should be self-driven. The benefits should be of Combo Pack: employees should be given the monetary benefits as per existing market plus they should constitute a learning attitude and the growth that they can see in the company.
8. What HR technology software tools do you prefer?
Rolling Access is an HR based software to digitize manual tasks. And this software is a combo pack with not only HR tools but includes HR aspects, performance management, leave details, employees’ details, company policies, performance tracker, and many more. An assignee can converse about the assigned tasks with the assignor, this software has enabled to track record of even a mini thing of a company. It has minimized the manual workloads and it is very efficient and effective for HRM in any organization.
9. How do you define company culture? What would you do to help maintain it as the company grows?
Company culture represents who the employees are and who the management is. When you don’t have any culture/systematic approach, people won’t like to be in the company. Employees should not feel that the working environment is pale and they should be motivated towards the work. There should be open culture and proactiveness in learning new things, participating in various things. Monotony should not be there.
10. What do you think are most responsible for a company’s growth and are you applying the same in the company?
I believe in my working period, I have helped my juniors grow. Adopting succession planning and growth techniques, talent acquisition has been groomed over. Not every employee sticks to the organization for a longer period. If any employee leaves the organization, it is my failure too but we can’t make every employee stay in the organization. They may have several other expectations too. We need to have patience and follow specific rules to obtain certain objectives.
11. Where do you want to see RPPL in 5 years?
We have recently launched Rolling Nexus, an online professional application for employers and people who want something different. Our goal is to become Nepal’s first professional networking hub and market leader in terms of job-provider, call center, business process outsourcing, and more. Working continuously with effortful actions is our mission to achieve these goals.
12. What do you think are the important qualities to be the best boss?
I don’t prefer my employees calling me a Boss but instead I introduce myself as a leader who works along with the team in a democratic pattern. To be an efficient leader, one should always give priority to the employees, company growth, and the clients too. If the company is investing Rs 100 in me, I should have or develop the caliber to make a return of Rs 1000 to the company. Teamwork, actions to overcome weaknesses, continual efforts in improvements, transparency, and two-way communication with the embracement of employees’ ideas are the qualities that a true organizational leader should have.
13. Any message that you want to share.
Nowadays, youths are more inclined towards switching jobs from one company to another in a very short time. If anyone wants to practice internship, Rolling Plans Pvt. Ltd. welcomes anyone having great caliber and competencies. They can also get proper counseling in choosing their career field. Patience, commitment, desire for learning, and improvements are the major factors that make a human being proficient.
Let’s hear it out from the other staff of Rolling Plans Pvt. Ltd about Mr. Gyan Raj Panthi:
Anup Jangam (Executive Chairman)
Gyan Raj Panthi landed in our office at Milan Chowk in 2010 AD to attend the selection interview for Call Center Agent.
My first impression of him was of a late teenager impersonating American accent, smart ass flaunting overconfidence. We decided not to select him for the position instantly but within a few days, we considered him with the condition to test his performance with a trial period.
Within six months, we offered him the position of Sales Coordinator into our core team from call center agent. And then slowly he advanced to Call Center Coordinator and then to Unit Head for Call Center. In 2016, he took up the responsibility as General Manager and from 2021 onwards, leading the company as Chief Operating Officer.
That day of his first interview in 2010 and after 11 years today, I still consider that as my biggest error in judgment, of being heavily reliant on stereotyping and generalization. Had we not corrected our error in judgment then, we would have missed a central pillar at Rolling Plans.
In 11 years he has grown from strength to strength on the professional front and continued his higher education along the way. Now, he is a leader in a true sense of the word.
Pravash Rai (Manager - HR Services)
Employees in many cases don't choose companies. They choose supervisors. When I was offered a fulltime job position after completion of my internship in Rolling Plans, I too didn't choose the company then. I chose the supervisor. I chose Gyan sir.
Rojesh Man Shrestha (Deputy Manager - CCO)
For every new project, he always takes the time to break things down to a level that I could not understand and build upon. Assigning work tasks to me that were sometimes quite difficult allowed me to have the chance to expand my knowledge and build confidence in my abilities. The valuable skills I‘ve learned from him over the past year have given me that boost in my professional career: then and now I am completely independent and confident in this competitive market.
He has always been calm, composed, and supportive. His extra quality as my supervisor is he never denies if it’s his fault rather he pushed me to fix that issue showering his experience on me.
Anisha Joshi (Officer - HR & Admin)
I have the opportunity to work with an excellent supervisor, Mr. Gyan Raj Panthi Sir. I have always been able to communicate effectively with him and he would often acknowledge my work and dedication. He gives very constructive feedback when needed, which I believe have helped me to hone my skills further.
The pipeline of continuous improvement and growth should always be there in the organization which requires the strong collaboration of employees, management, and strong leaders. Mr. Panthi fosters collaboration through his leadership and exemplifies an ideal leader.