‘The only thing a designation carries is the level of responsibility'
On this episode of The Shape of Work podcast, we have Dr Upendra Pieris to share about his incredible journey from being a data processing officer to being the CEO of OREL IT, a global corporation that enables machine vision led innovation. It has grown exponentially from a two-person fraternity to a 4500 plus strong company in just over a decade.
With over 15 years of experience in the global IT industry, Upendra has contributed immensely to the IT industry of Sri Lanka and encouraged young professionals to become aspiring and innovative leaders.
In this episode, we discuss with Upendra:
First 90 days of being a CEO:
Being a CEO from a Vice-President has been a huge change for Upendra. He explains the challenges of being the last in the line of designation. For the first 90 days, Upendra worked on clearing the basics.
He looked back at what he did as a vice-president. Being the CEO made him realize that there are small things that often get neglected by employees. These are the things he focused on. He made certain plans to put in front of the team and the management.
Upendra feels that switching to a higher position might have created a gap between him and his employees. But he believes that one should put full effort to reduce this gap.
How to view leadership?
Upendra sees leadership in two contexts.
How did the pandemic affect their company?
When the pandemic began, the company was not known to the concept of working from home. They have a lot of focus on data processing, and they have their own data centers. Hence, the work-from-home facility was not available. Within five days, the tech companies started distributing computers to the employees. They now have a well-managed system with 60%-70% people working from home while the rest work from the office. They have taken certain restrictions. 95% of customer demand was delivered that year.
They have also arranged medical and doctor support and ensured that employees receive timely deliveries of certain facilities and food at the time of need.
The tech development in Sri Lanka:
According to Upendra, Sri Lanka is not lacking in tech but rather in tech marketing. The world does not know about the tech developments because they have not been marketed efficiently.
However, several organizations have excelled individually, and they are facilitating the giants in the international industry.
Another concerning factor is the skill migration in the companies. He also highlights the improvements needed in the education system of the country. However, Sri Lanka has the ability and is also now backing Indian operations.
Follow Upendra on LinkedIn
Produced by: Priya Bhatt
Podcast host: Abhash Kumar
Get the highlights of this episode from our blog.
BONUS: Here is your solution to conduct a successful Employee Recognition Program in 2021 in your organization.