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What the world’s top Indian-born CEOs can teach you about leadership

Sundar Pichai

As Google Cloud looks to welcome Kerala-born Thomas Kurian as CEO in the new year, it seems Indian’s are ruling the world of tech. He’s in good company, as he joins the ranks of other Indians who have advanced to the top job as leaders of global companies.

Adzuna decided to take a look at what makes a great leader, as told by the world’s top Indian-born CEOs in tech.

Whether you are just starting out as an intern, you’re pushing for a promotion, or you already lead a team, see what these global tech CEOs have learnt over the course of their career, and take notes on how you can succeed in your own as well.

Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google, on encouraging others to succeed:

Sundar Pichai

“It’s learning to let go and really empowering people at all levels of the organisation, and trusting them to do the right thing,” he says.

“As a leader, a lot of your job is to make those people successful. It’s less about trying to be successful yourself, and more about making sure you have good people and your work is to remove that barrier, remove roadblocks for them so that they can be successful in what they do.”

Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, on the importance of empathy:

Satya Nadella

“I’ve come to realise that if you think about creating anything new, any new product, any new business, as a leader, the one skill that you need more than any other skill is that deep sense of empathy,” he says.

“Our job is to build things that somehow are in tune with these unmet, unarticulated needs of customers. It is not written down. It is not like I can interview five customers and figure it out. What is the next hypothesis you are going to test? That, to me, is a form of empathy.”

Rajeev Suri, CEO of Nokia, on embracing change:

Rajeev Suri

“Do we want to stay in our comfort zone, with the same business models that have served us well until now, or do we want to look to the future and embrace new ways of working? Yes, there are challenges, but also immense new opportunity for revenue growth.”

Shantanu Narayen, CEO of Adobe, on learning from your mistakes:

Shantanu Narayen

“Creating a culture where you allow people to take risks and grow their careers, I think, is important,” he says.

“I have looked back at aspects of my career where somebody might look at it and say, you know, that startup was not successful, and I look at it and I say, “I learned how to build a team, how to raise money, how to sell a vision, how to create a product.” It was a great stepping stone for me.”

No matter your level of experience, it’s important to demonstrate good leadership skills in the workplace. You’ll be respected by your colleagues, and more likely to succeed in your career.

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