“Smile in the face of adversity!”
True courage is when someone smiles in the face of adversity whilst embracing their shortcomings. Right from regaining her confidence to flaring well in the field of Human Resource, Radha Kanodia has steadily risen to a much higher level of success. During a colloquy with Corporate Citizen, Radha spoke at length about her transition from the college to the corporate life, handling various roles in the HR department and much more
"There is a lot of difference between book-knowledge and practical experience. It took me a while to adapt. I made mistakes and learnt from it while keeping my eyes and ears open. What made the transition easy was setting a defined goal and achieving it"
Around eight years ago, when Radha moved to Pune from her hometown Darbhanga, Bihar, for her further studies, she wasn’t certain if she could sustain in this dog-eat-dog world. Big town, fierce competition, different culture and language; it all sent jitters down her spine. But it couldn’t crackle her ardour. “I somewhere had the gut feeling that I have the ability to make it big. All I needed was a boost of confidence and the right platform. Entering the corporate realm was sort of a key that unlocked the path of achieving my dreams. The journey made me realise the importance of a smile. When you smile through your adversities, things begin to simplify,” beamed Radha.
While pursuing her Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) from Bharti Vidhya Peth, Pune, Radha had an epiphany where she realised what her true calling was. “The field of human resource grabbed my attention. I felt a connection with HR as I knew I could influence people, of course, in a good way. Just the thought of being a part of their career growth gave a meaning to my life. I wanted to spread positivity in the people’s lives and HR was the way out,” she explained. To strengthen her base, Radha opted to study HR from SBS, Pune.
Laying the groundwork
After a few months of moving to Pune, Radha fell in love with the city. And along with being studious, she made sure to take part in the extra-curricular activities. “College is one of the platforms where you can explore various aspects of life. The fests, college events and functions came as a breath of fresh air in life which made me realise my aspirations. And moreover, it made me aware of my worth and restored my self-belief,” she said. SBS played a crucial role in shaping her life and preparing her for the placement. Regular sessions, mock-up interviews, guidance and more much; it all made Radha placement-ready.
Never give up
There are always times when things don’t work in your favour. Radha had to give several interviews and GDs before she landing her first job with iPlace, USA, a recruiting company. “At times, I would crack the interview but couldn’t flare well in the GDs and vice versa. I realised that I lacked the confidence that a student needs to portray during GDs and PIs. However, I never gave up. I knew I would crack it one day!” said a determined Radha.
So, what did you do differently the next time, we asked? She quipped, “I reframed the answers that I had prepared for the PIs and polished them well. Secondly, I kept myself updated with the current happenings, as the GDs depend on that. Self-believe is something that helped me during GDs. I confidently voiced my opinions which made the invigilators notice me. And voila, I landed a job with one of the best recruiting companies,” she reminisced.
"At times, I would crack the interview but couldn’t flare well in the GDs, and vica versa. I realised that I lacked the confidence that a student needs to portray during GDs and PIs. However, I never gave up. I knew I would crack it one day!"
the greatest form of expession.
She keeps her family and friends
close to her heart
One possibly might have gathered all the technical know-how from the college, but the real test begins when the student enters the corporate life. It is a life-changing transformation which comes with responsibilities and duties. Radha’s actual tryst with corporate life began during her internship with Eaton Fluid Power Ltd. “This two-month internship helped me gain a lot of perspectives. During this period, I came up with a form with the support of different statistical and quantitative analysis tools. The form measured training effectiveness. This is one of my greatest accomplishments,” she said.
Placed as an associate recruiter with iPlace, USA and later promoted as a senior recruiter, Radha was responsible for the on-call recruiting programme which included the negotiation part as well. She made use of different tools for sourcing, especially Applicant Tracking System (ATS) which is a software application that enables the electronic handling of recruitment and hiring needs. Talking about the transition into the corporate life, Radha explained, “There is a lot of difference between book-knowledge and practical experience. It took me a while to adapt. I made mistakes and learnt from it while keeping my eyes and ears open. What made the transition easy was setting a defined goal and achieving it. Yes, corporate life can be stressful at times, but once you start enjoying your work you will automatically understand how to strike the balance between work and life.”
Last year, Radha shifted to Syska LED Lights Pvt. Ltd as a senior executive, HR. The shift came at the right time as she wanted to gain a wider range of opportunities and responsibilities. Currently, Radha is looking after a generalist profile which essentially supervises the start to end HR process of every single employee.
As the competition got severe, Radha pulled her socks and worked even harder. She developed excellent work ethics, stuck to her deadlines and her work did most of the talking. Thriving on positivity during the tough times, she said, “You won’t be always appreciated for your work but be confident and continue working with all your dedication. I followed the same path. When things did not work in my favour, I smiled and kept doing my best. Never giving up do wonders. No matter what phase I was going through in my career, I was always grounded and respected everyone in the office irrespective of their position.”
With the advent of technology, it has become recruitdecisive to preserve the human element of HR. Being in this field for almost four years, Radha feels that although HR has embraced technology nothing can replace the human touch. “It is always is a give and take relationship. The employees are one of the pillars on which the organisation runs. Respect them and make them feel at home. Not every productive employee is appreciated but every appreciated employee is productive. When people are emotionally invested, they want to contribute. Restoring the human element not only boosts the employee’s confidence but also makes them feel welcomed,” she said.
In these few years, Radha has learnt to adapt herself in corporate life. She acquired the knowledge which she wishes to pass it on to her junior.
Advice for freshers
- When the company comes in for the campus placement, do a thorough research of the company and try to understand the organisation from its roots.
- Keep a track of all the current events. It will help you during the GD.
- For PIs, be as confident as you can, but not overconfident! A mock-up interview will help you gain perspective.
- As an HR, our job is to make the employees feel that they are welcomed and that they are an integral part of the organisation. Interaction and communication are crucial.
- Put a smile on your face and spread positivity. Create a positive workplace environment.
- Once you get settled at work, learn to strike the right balance between work and life.
- Have faith in yourself.