Alumni Speak

‘A demanding manager is good for your growth’

Apeejay School of Management alumnus Aarushee Kapoor says that If you manage to meet the expectations of a demanding boss, you can reap rich dividends

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Aarushee Kapoor, an alumnus of Apeejay School of Management, Delhi, is working with Ernst & Young (E&Y) as a Senior Research Analyst. In an interview, she shares valuable lessons with young people entering the corporate world.

What’s the role of a research analyst?

My role is to identify, analyse and review potential operational and technological risks and act as liaison between client and functional teams. I also identify opportunities to improve efficiency. Research analysts must carefully examine data and produce meaningful information to improve the decision-making and efficiency of a business.

How can one be a fast learner at a new job?

The most important thing is to keep your eyes and ears open all the time. Don’t just be another average employee, think thoroughly and give your inputs on a consistent basis. Gradually, your manager will notice your spark and enthusiasm. In fast-paced roles, employers are looking for fast learners who can easily absorb new information and apply it to their work. You also need to think outside the box i.e. you’re open to consider different solutions and methods for reaching your desired outcome. Being a fast learner helped me get two promotions in three-and-a-half years. 

How can one deal with a demanding boss?

When I first joined the organisation I too had to deal with a demanding manager, but it is due to that boss that I was able to hone my skills. If you manage to meet the expectations of your boss, you will reap rich dividends in future. It will also help you evolve. You will stand head and shoulders above your colleagues in terms of knowledge and productivity. Understanding why your boss does or cares about certain things can give your insight into his or her management style. Still, if you have irreconcilable differences with your boss or manager on some matters you can get in touch with a skip-level manager i.e. your boss’s boss. In most companies, your interactions with a skip-level manager are kept secret. Overall, to have a cordial relationship with your boss, you must step up and stand out in times of crisis.

What do you mean by step up and stand out in times of crisis?

For example, when the second Covid wave hit India, businesses were going through a difficult time. During such times of crisis, you need to stand up and deliver for your organisation. Tell your manager that you are ready to take the extra load. Your boss will remember the pro-activeness shown by you, I am telling you this from personal experience. It will also ensure that when the company is going through a shaky period and has to take difficult decisions you will not be among the first lot to leave the organisation.

How important is it to work hard?

Obviously, it’s important, but it doesn’t mean you will upset your work-life balance. Hard work for me is giving your best during office hours and being open to new challenges and opportunities. Hard work doesn’t mean slogging in the office. Let me illustrate this through an example. Recently, a fresher joined my team and he used to slog it out in the office for 14-15 hours a day. Naturally, when you are working this long you will need the help and inputs of your team members who have finished their shift hours. Now, the team members were helping him but questions were raised about his efficiency.  ‘Is this person not capable enough to finish the work in the stipulated time?’ The point is with hard work you also need to do smart work.

Dheeraj Sharma is Asst. Editor (Newsroom). He covers events, webinars, conducts interviews and brings you exciting news snippets. He has over 10 years' of experience in prominent media organizations. He takes pleasure in the small things in life and believes a healthy work-life balance is key to happiness. You can reach him at [email protected]

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