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Tuesday, 21 July 2015

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Building A Foundation: Interview with Aditya Singh, Chairman of Alexis Group




For the Sake of Argument catches up with Mr. Aditya Singh, Founder, Chairman & Managing Director of The Alexis Group. 







Sourya (S): You studied B.Com (Hons.) from University of Delhi. Tell us sometime about life at DU?

Aditya (A): My undergraduate academic experience at University of Delhi was very enriching and I have enjoyed every part of it. Itenabled me to become an independent person, interact with diverse set of people, understand multiple perspectives, think out of box and widen my horizon.
I was primarily exposed to various types of Accounting - financial, corporate and cost & management, Economics - micro & macro, Statistics and Law. I also chose to study electives such as Political Science, Ethics & Values, Information Technology, Business Communication, Auditing and Marketing which have equipped me both personally and professionally to create value for the society.
My most preferred subject was Law. Law is a subject where you can develop a range of skills and explore many aspects of human life. I studied four papers related to law during my undergraduate studies - Business Law, Corporate Law, Income Tax Law & Practice and Auditing. It helped me to understand the basics of contract and also the complexities of company management. Studying Law as an undergraduate student gave me the chance to strengthen my understanding, deepen my experience and develop my critical thinking.
Alongside with studies, I have also been involved with the National Service Scheme throughout the three years in college. During these years, I held several leadership and advisory committee positions. I was instrumental in organizing Blood Donations camps, Cleanliness Campaign, Each One, Teach One Campaign, CWG Games 2010 Volunteer Induction Campaign, Career Counseling and Personality Development programs. The main challenge I faced during this time was investing people in the idea of social service as mostly students wanted focused only on their studies.
However, I overcame this challenge through one on one conversations and motivating fellow students by introducing incentives and recognition system. The system worked and college NSS unit enrolled 60% students of the college thereby creating significant impact on projects we undertook and communities we engaged with. This was an immense fulfilling and great learning experience for me.

(S): You followed that up with MSc in International Management from University of Strathclyde. Was Management something you had always been interested in from childhood, or did it just come along the way?

(A): My postgraduate learning experience was more about reflective learning, learning from peers and putting critical thinking into action in different projects I took up. Studying with peers from 25 nationalities was indeed a great learning experience. International Management also taught me a lot about, people, culture, leadership and diversity apart from different functional areas of management such as Finance, Marketing, Human Resource Management, Entrepreneurship, and Strategy with the International component in all of them.
Both my parents are Professors and I grew up in IIM Lucknow Campus, so Management was something very natural I got attracted to. Though I have vast  and varied interests in Art and Culture, Architecture, Cinema History, Music and Philosophy.

(S): Tell us something about the Alexis Foundation.

(A): Alexis Foundation is currently India’s leading and most diversified youth-led think tank. It conducts research and provides consultancy in areas such as economics, information technology, law, management, public policy and strategy.From March 2015 onwards, we have started accepting foreign interns as well. Our aim is to expand globally in next 2 years and become one of world’s leading youth led think tanks. With the team I have currently, I can say with confidence that we are on the right track.

Q) Did some particular incident motivate you to start the Alexis Foundation?

(A): My team at Alexis Society was very much focused on ground level work and events. Furthermore, I thought that it would be right to separate the do-tank and think-tank so that they can have separate organization level strategy in terms of key decisions. In the hindsight, I think I took the right decision because both the organizations have different focus areas, approach towards work, leadership team and strategic direction now. It has provided growth and expansion opportunities to both organizations and individuals associated with them.

(S): You are a Hesselbein Fellow. Kindly share some of your experiences regarding the same.

(A): Every year, Hesselbein Global Academy for Student Leadership and Civic Engagement at University of Pittsburgh, USA selects 50 top student leaders from across the world and mentors them to be effective, ethical, and innovative leaders at the Summit. I was selected as a Hesselbein Fellow in 2013. At the annual summit, I met student leaders from more than 25 States from USA and 15 Countries around the world. This experience has helped me understand the concepts of leadership, entrepreneurship and diversity practically.


(S): What was your proudest moment regarding Alexis Group till date?

(A): It has been a long and adventurous journey of 6 years till now, therefore, very difficult to choose one moment. During this journey, I have witnessed transformational changes in lives of some people, few people have achieved remarkable feats academically, and few people have developed themselves as leaders. All these moments fill me with pride and remind me to work harder.

(S): Being a dynamic student leader, mentor and entrepreneur, do you aspire to enter into politics as such to serve the society better?

(A): Yes, I am very much keen to join active politics at the appropriate time. For me, Politics is an instrument to bring about socio-economic change and inclusive development.

(S): What do you think about the current class of politicians and politics in India?

(A): Currently, the situation is not ideal. However, I can see some positive changes emerging in our political system. Having said that, we still have personality driven politics rather than ideology/policy driven and this needs to change. Media, Youth and Civil Society are willing to be part of the Policy formulation process and Government must try to encourage their participation. In this regard, I would like to commend the efforts of honourable Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi ji.

(S): Any word of advice for potential future leaders reading this?


(A): If you wish to be in public life, always uphold a very high moral character, be humble, never sacrifice with your principles, and always be honest with yourself. Different people may perceive you differently based on their life experiences. You may or may not have a good reputation or image at a particular period of time, but these things are temporary. Your character is permanent, once that is lost, everything is lost. You may still become successful, but you will never attain satisfaction and self-respect that way. 

1 comments:

xmen said...

Tks very much for your post.

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