“Making a difference in lives sources my everyday motivation. I endeavor to build an ecosystem of growth stories of people & brands in all ways possible.”– Vijayashree Venkat
Passionate, result-oriented, compassionate, innovative, and growth-focused risk-taker, the self-made woman entrepreneur, Vijayashree Venkat has navigated through a four-decade journey witnessing many women capable of carving their niches but deprived support and platform.
This hinged her on a mission as a businesswoman, i.e. employ and see more & more women celebrating their abilities and being independent. With Vijayashree zeroing down her passion into the quote, “Love What you Do; Do What you Love!”,HumanAlpha succeeded rooting from associations with esteemed brands across dynamic industries and positive word of mouth.
A people leader in both worlds, corporate as well as entrepreneur, Vijayashree manifested her vision of helping people grow into their greater versions into her current identity and HumanAlpha Strategic Solutions in her own right.
The brand personified her ever-standing intent to “make a difference” through enabling brand growth by creating new leaders, building a high-performance culture, and instituting agility in organizations. Customized to the client’s requirement HumanAlpha is specialized in designing and delivering customized Strategic HR Advisory & Consulting Solutions.
This amalgamation of people, process, culture, & technology is aimed to make holistic and dynamic solutions. As HumanAlpha’s CEO, she is continuously enabling growth stories of women through coaching, counselling, mentoring, and even employing them in different capacities. Vijayashree talks over a host of issues in line with her leadership in an exclusive interview with The CEO Magazine. Here are the edited excerpts:
The CEO: In the journey, did you deal with the challenge of acceptance? If not, what were the other challenges you overcame?
Vijayashree: Indeed, acceptance is a major challenge in the journey of a business leader. Owing to the two decades of the role as a Corporate HR, a sudden transformation into entrepreneurship wasn’t something that any of my acquaintances expected.
During this transition, it was indeed difficult for my existing friends and acquaintances to connect to me both in my conversations and to my purpose, and some of them did drift apart. I have accepted this as part of a transformational process that results in the creation of a new ecosystem of people, friends, and partners.
The CEO: How did you differentiate yourself and your brand from the competition?
Vijayashree: I have been on the receiving end of the services that consulting firms “market” to offer and value to the table for businesses & decision-makers, and not receiving them. At HumanAlpha, we created solutions that are specific, customized, high on value, and enabling business growth, implementation-focused, technology & data-driven, and completely aligned to the intent & culture of businesses we are associating with.
It is for this reason that we have attracted brands purely out of the positive word of mouth & reference and we continue to grow this way even today.
The CEO: How did you build your team?
Vijayashree: We attracted the best talent in our team. Mahesh Sheshadri & I resonate with common human values and high professional benchmarks. This has been the reason for our strong brand recall as we have attracted employees, consultants & interns who have been part of our growing family for these two years. People love to work with us for our Values, Our Intent and are mostly long-term focused in terms of growth and learning Vs. being transactional and monetary driven.
The CEO: What are the activities that allow you to keep your team motivated?
Vijayashree: We celebrate every little victory. In our dictionary and our journey, there are only “lessons learned”, and no “failures”. We stand up for each other for our complementary capabilities & our values of transparency, innovation, integrity & respect for each other. There is never a day where we don’t learn and grow as a team. That sums up our strong culture & DNA.
The CEO: How did you handle adversity and doubt?
Vijayashree: I believe the answer to facing adversity is resilience and a complete focus on my purpose. As an Entrepreneur, I take pride in the way we stood up to the challenges in the nascent year of our business and the impacts of a global health crisis The COVID-19 pandemic in our second year of existence.
Each day became synonymous with innovating, learning, becoming fitter, and leaner to create a strong brand presence. We have worked diligently towards building relationships with people in the ecosystem as a result of great clarity and focus on purpose.
The CEO: How do you plan on growing your business in the upcoming years?
Vijayashree: We are growing towards our goals of scaling the HumanAlpha team shortly. We are building a strong ecosystem of consultants, coaches, and partners. While the Pandemic has shown us the possibilities of new conducts of working supported by digitalization, we are working with clients across the dynamic geography, and continuing to grow.
The CEO: What does success look like in the current role and for the company?
Vijayashree: Being the leader of a rising consulting firm, every day is a day of growth and I would like to term “success” as a continuous journey. From our clients and resources wanting to associate with us, each of these is a constant reinforcement of sustained success.
We wish to impact as many brands, especially the emerging small & mid-sized businesses, while we wish to impact as many people across business sizes in their growth as better versions.
The CEO: What are the questions you ask after each breakthrough?
Vijayashree: I usually find myself asking two simple questions of “Did we make a difference?” and “Did we add value?” Along with me, as a leader, each member of the HumanAlpha Team ponders on these questions as it drives our excellence execution.
The CEO: If you were to answer a young female executive’s question of ‘How can I be a good leader?’, what would you advise?
Vijayashree: To every woman, leaders reading this, I would like to tell you to stand up for your values, do what you believe is professionally right, and have the courage to break the rules, if you genuinely believe in “making a difference”.
The CEO: Do you believe in giving back to society, if yes, how?
Vijayashree: Absolutely, it is a deep-rooted purpose in my life. In the same direction, it has been a personal desire to train at least two women from any professional or entrepreneurial background to transition into the greater versions of themselves.
Currently, I am also working with a wonderful team of women leaders, and we intend to build a nonprofit organization that will inspire many lives and professional growth of women at the grassroots.
A Message For The CEO Magazine Readers
“I sincerely believe, each one of us is gifted with the strengths to live a life with purpose, where we can give back to the world and make it a better place. The sooner we learn our purpose, the more meaningful our life becomes every day as we live.”– Vijayashree Venkat