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Sunando Banerjee
Sunando Banerjee

Sunando Banerjee

Channel Business Manager, Asia Pacific and Middle East, Openbravo SLU

Openbravo SLU

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Sunando Banerjee is a member of:

Family background
I came from a middle class Bengali family. My mother was a school teacher and my father was working with the Education Department of Government of West Bengal. My father was a popular person in our town and also became an influential MLA in the late 80s. Although I was born in one of those small little Bengali family, where a child is born and taught either Engineering or Medicince is the end of life, I was lucky enough to got the freedom to think independently. I was taught that more than anything being a perfect human being is more important in life.
I lost my father quite early when I was only 19. Since then I had started looking at life differently.
Leadership qualities
I feel there are two most important factors in life that you should never forget.A.To remain human. That is to look at your fellow team members as human and consider their capacity(limitation) before you assign a task to them. And B.Do not forget your past.
Everyone of us has struggled in our respective lives to be where we are today. In this journey, sometimes you find a leader extremely good and sometimes you hated a person. Remember the reason for your love and hatred. Try to understand the compulsion behind the person whom you hated most.Now work on the behavioral aspect and try not to repeat what they have done for which you hated them.It is not simple as it sounds. Leadership capacity is there in all of us.You need to know where you are a leader.You may be bad in the complicated business analysis but you are good in the aesthetics and feels the logo of the company should be changed.Here you have the leadership capacity.Utilize that. I strongly feel that no one is a born leader.
More about me
Well there are many aspects to leadership. What I strongly feel as I mentioned that the quality of leadership is there in all of us. It may get suppressed at times due to multiple reasons. You need to come out of your prejudice and boundaries to analyze what is there inside you.
I think in organizations these days there are competition which are unhealthy.It sometimes kill the natural instincts of leadership in you. An organization must also allow people to exercise their leadership quality. An atmosphere where people can freely work and smile if they want is what needed to brought up leaders.
Excellence in Management
This is something my company can answer better. But I feel, when I joined Openbravo back in 2008 the name was unknown to all. Today we have 50+ partners across 20+ Countries and a customer base of 500+ companies using our ERP solution gives me immense pleasure.
My advice
Be true to yourself.
Know your limitation and work on it.
Be self-analytical if not critical
Think of your fellow worker and help them to succeed - your success will automatically follow.
Important career decisions
Well.. starting from my career I always thought I made wrong decisions. After completing Engineering, I joined a dot.com company as a graphic designer and content developer. From there I went to Bangladesh as a country manager for a lesser known organization and then somehow adopted sales as a career. But looking back, I feel all the decisions were correct. I have known the world from a different angle. Sales gave me the chance to visit close to 30 countries and interact with various people of different culture, values and feelings.
I think taking sales as a career option was the most important decision of my life. Also leaving the association of Microsoft and joining a lesser known company like Openbravo was a key decision. Sometimes it is important that you take up challenges which are almost impossible to achieve. This is the best way to analyze your strength and weakness.
Managing personal and professional life
You are not a human being if you do not commit mistakes. Mistakes taught you what is right. But it is important never to forget your mistakes and analyze why have you gone wrong. If you learn from your mistakes and neutrally analyze them, you are less prone to repeat them.
I am a bit instinctive in taking decisions which to many is not the right way of leadership. But instinctive leadership gives you the thrill to perform better. I do admit the importance of being calculative and being graphical taking major decisions. But for day to day operations, leave certain decisions on your instincts.
I think if you are too skeptical in your decisions and always fear to avoid mistakes it may hamper the growth of your organization.
Handling Grievances
Grievances are important for an organization to grow. You need to create an environment where the employees can feel free to submit their grievances. As I said earlier, you should not forget your past. You have to put yourself in his/her shoes to understand the core of the issue and act accordingly. If you do not act properly on the grievances of people, you may stop getting the feedback.
I think a 360 degree HR evaluation is a good step to make it process oriented. But then it is not only important to implement the 360 degree appraisal system but creating an environment where real feedback are submitted.
Ensuring Growth
Learning... You cannot stop yourself from learning more.
Reading is another good habit to help you grow within. More than anything, I feel it is important to interact. The more I interact with people from different level of the organization, I know more on how the company is behaving with them. This helps you to get the best out of them. You cannot grow as a leader if you are not supported well. And to get the support you need to be a source of constant energy and knowledge. I often felt stagnated in an organization when I felt there is nothing much I can learn from my Boss. This is destructive. So I try to keep myself updated always with what is happening around me, what are the latest trends. HBR is a good source for me always.
Awards and Recognitions
I have been nominated as the best sales person by Microsoft for 2 consecutive years in two different geographies. To me that was definitely something I remember. That was the time, I was trying to understand whether it was a wrong decision to get into sales.
There are number of awards, accolades you receive in your career. But to me, the best award I get is the support of the whole organization. I am extremely overwhelmed with the love and encouragement I receive from my fellow employees and management in Openbravo. This gives me the strength to perform better.
My views on India Technical development
I feel it is a mind-set issue. Product development is not a quick-money project. It is a long-term engrossing commitment of an organization. In India, thanks to the enormous growth of out-sourcing revenues, people have somehow became more keen to bespoke development than developing products.
Also I feel, we have never understood the importance of domain specialists and industry leaders. Today, I see many organizations developing products in CRM or HCM. When I interact with them, I found they have a great team of developer who have worked in similar projects. But in most of the cases, I rarely found the company invested in having a domain specialist to manage the product.
I think the Business Schools today have to take a lead in this. The entrepreneurship in the field of IT needs to get directed towards product development than organization development.Look at China. How they are building products every day. Well,quality sometimes are getting sacrificed but that is a part of learning
Current Job description
Openbravo is a channel based organization. We are the developers of Openbravo ERP which is world's leading Open Source ERP. Our business model is 100% channel centric. So we offer partnership to companies and train them to get equipped with the product and implementation knowledge. I look after the Channel Business for Openbravo for the entire Asia Pacific and Middle East region. My role is to find companies with ERP experience, establish partnership with them, ensure that they get trained and at the end of the day, equipped enough to do business and generate revenues for them as well as for Openbravo. Apart from that, I also work closely with the product team in Europe by providing the right feedback from our customers and partners.
An additional role that I play is to co-ordinate all marketing activities in the region.
Influenced by
My father. He has been an inspiration to many more people like me. He was a simple man with strong ethics and strong fellow feelings. I unknowingly picked up the human skills from him. He knew how to make friends and keep them friends forever. An extremely well read and well mannered person with a simple philosophy.
Apart from him, I was pretty much influenced reading Richard Branson, Steve Jobs and Jack Welch. I also admire Mr. Narayanmurthy a lot again for his simplicity yet astounding managerial skills.
Tech Management matters more on
There is nothing called a Tech managers. Managerial functions are same across industry and domain. You need to be updated, know your competition, know your strength and weakness. These are common traits to become a good manager be it in the field of technology or others.
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