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Patience and good mentors are key to a successful career, says Apeejay Noida alumnus

Akshay Uday, 33, who is a director in a company, says he owes his swift career progression to the mentors who believed in him

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Apeejay Noida alumnus Akshay Uday’s school memories are fresh in his mind even today—from his interactions with the faculty to playing sports, and more. Acknowledging the “well-rounded exposure” the institution offered, he says studying at any other school would have perhaps made him miss out on a lot of valuable experiences. After completing school, he went on to pursue engineering followed by a master’s degree in management. Currently, he is a director at Anarock. In an interview, Akshay tells us more about his journey. Edited excerpts:

Take us through your journey at Apeejay School, Noida.

My journey at Apeejay Noida began in nursery. I completed schooling in 2006. My mother was a teacher at Apeejay so I actually started coming to school at three years of age. I was actively involved in school sports—I played for the school cricket team and also handled captaincy. During the time that I was at school, the principal changed thrice and each of them was personally connected with the children. I remember in senior school, the then-principal would sometimes walk into the table tennis room to play with the students. I realised later when I interacted with students from other schools that this was quite unusual. I think we derived a lot of comfort from the experience. While pursuing higher studies, I realised the relationship between teachers and students was quite different elsewhere. 

At school, the principal encouraged me to look beyond academics—I remember him telling me that there was no compulsion to take science although I ended up choosing the stream. There were other teachers who were very encouraging and supportive of our interests beyond academics. They supported my love for sports by allowing flexibility in my attendance or even giving me time beyond school hours to help me catch up. The school provided us with a well-rounded experience at a time when it was rare. I sometimes feel that had I been in another school, my experience would have been completely different.

In your current job at Anarock, what does your work entail?

Anarock is a real estate-focused advisory firm. I look after the capital markets business in North India, including Delhi NCR, Uttar Pradesh, and Haryana. My work entails structuring solutions for clients who need today’s capital. If someone wants to develop a project—which could be residential, commercial, retail, or warehousing—they need capital, and we help them organise that. We help them arrange money through private equities, non-banking corporations, or through normal banking channels. The job requires a highly specialised skill set with a thorough understanding of finance and construction as well as market scenarios.

You started your professional career in 2010 and now, you are a director in a company. How do you see this swift career progress and what went into it?

I have been fortunate. There is no dearth of hard work and talent today. The youth is very driven and are ready to prove themselves. I can credit this trajectory to having good mentors who believed in me completely and instilled in me the confidence to go out and make mistakes. A slightly more difficult step than that is to stick around these mentors without getting impatient. From what I observed around me, people tend to look for instant gratification but sometimes it takes time to get the desired results. So, it is important to be patient. This is something I have personally followed. And you have to trust and have faith in your mentor—I have been fortunate on that front all my life.

Do you have a mantra for success?

Not a mantra really, but I strongly believe one should stick around good mentors because it is hard to find them. Eventually, things will turn out to be better. You need to have faith in your abilities as well as in that of others. When it is your turn to become a mentor, you should guide people to the best of their ability.

Disha Roy Choudhury is a Senior Correspondent at Apeejay Newsroom. She has worked as a journalist at different media organisations. She is also passionate about music and has participated in reality shows.

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