Winners on leadership: An introduction

These leadership gems that you will find in the pages of this issue are worth savouring

Winners on leadership: An introduction - IT Next

NEXT100 is about leadership. And it is no coincidence that the first compilation of the articles from the winners is on leadership

What you will read in the next few pages are experiences of leadership by a set of practicing executives who have distinguished themselves by being recognized for their ability to lead the IT transformation of Indian businesses, over the last eight years. NEXT100, as you know, is the only program in India that identifies and honors the future CIOs.
Today, some of them have already become CIOs. As you start reading this, it is probably proper to set the expectation right. Each of the authors in this issue is a practicing manager. None of them is an academician or a consultant. So, if you are looking for a new buzzword or a new management mantra, you may be disappointed. As the karma yogis don the hat of jnana yogis, they articulate what they have tried and/or learnt about leadership while still attending to data center issues or meeting the deadline of a project roll out. Many of them have tried things and succeeded or failed. Whether it is a success or a failure, there is a learning. You may face similar situation or a completely different one; but the tip may still be useful. From gamification to people-powered leadership; from agility to risk management, from collaborative thinking to importance of communication and public speaking—all the leadership gems that you will find in the pages of this issue are worth savoring not because they are new, disruptive thoughts or ground-breaking discoveries—of course, they are not—but because they have been made to work in real life situations, more often than not by the authors themselves.
Leadership is not just about knowledge; it is more about judicious and timely application of that knowledge. Use the issue for what it is.
Identify with your situations. You can find a lot of leadership lessons by great management thinkers in leadership books. We have not an iota of illusion that we add to that knowledge. All we are doing here is—as we always do—to provide a platform for sharing thoughts from your own tribe—situations that you can identify with; because they are tried, tested, and the experienced captured—by some of the best in your tribe. NEXT100 is about leadership. And it is no coincidence that the first compilation of the articles from the winners are on leadership. 
We followed a fairly simple process for this. 
We reached out to all the past NEXT100 winners by inviting them to write—on leadership, other management areas as well as selected technology areas. It speaks volume of the importance attached to the leadership that more than half the articles we received were on leadership. Some of them are an individual’s perspective of leadership as a whole—as in the case of Anand’s opening article with liberal does of his own tryst with it. Most of them, like Nikhil, Sanjay, Priya and Sujata focus on the attributes and qualities of leaders; some others focus on specific aspects. Aniruddha, for example, writes on people-powered leadership while Saloni deliberates on the soft issues. They argue their points logically but emphatically. Atul, a fresh NEXT100 winner, looks at the changing nature of leadership through his looking glass. Meetali gets into an emerging leadership role and specific expectations and focus areas within that role, while Puneet decides to highlight importance of a skill. 
By the way, even if you are not looking at leadership tips per se, the issue still gives you some interesting insights—into the minds of some of the brightest IT leaders of tomorrow and what they think about leadership. After all, they are the people who will drive the transformation of Indian businesses to a new era leveraging technology. Some are already doing so.
This issue is just a beginning. We will do a lot more to bring the lessons, experiences, tips and insights from these next generation leaders through various platforms. The immediate next offering will be a similar issue by NEXT100 winners, but focusing on technology. 
Expect it in January 2018. 

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