Interview with Aparajita Sharma

Aparajita Sharma

 

Class of 2003

 

Currently employed with IBM, Kolkata

 

Aparajita Sharma's determination and enthusiasm have taken her places! She always had a way with her words and wants to wield the pen in the longer run.

 

Designation: Instructional Designer

 

Campus Placement: CitiFinancial Consumer Finance India

 

 

Career Path:

CitiFinancial Asst. Mgr. Credit Conumer Finance 2003-08
HSBC Trainer and Instructional Designer 2008-09
IBM, Kolkata Instructional Designer 2009-Present

 

Achievements / Awards:

  • Highest sales figures achieved for 6 months pan Delhi as RM- Sales and Marketing for CitiFinancial (2003)

 

Life Quote: “The woods are lovely, dark and deep. But I have promises to keep. And miles to go before I sleep, and miles to go before I sleep.”

 

Q: Why don’t you give a little bit of background about your career history till now?

Aparajita: The full time professional experience began as a management trainee with one of the big brand names of the banking arena- CitiFinancial, a big wake call from the protectiveness of my post graduation into the big, real financial world. I worked a Relationship Manager in Sales & Marketing, handling a team of approximately 25 people to clock sales figures for the consumer finance - loan division of CitiFinancial Delhi. That very successful stint lasted 2 years, and after clearing through the credit underwriting exam, I worked as a Credit Underwriter in the Credit & Risk dept for 3 years. 5 years with Citigroup, and I finally parted ways to join another MNC bank – HSBC Plc, but as their banking systems trainer in HSBC GLT, Pune. This was my foray into a different industry and sector. I also started working in their e-learning division as an Instructional Designer, learning the ropes and delivering on the job. This was a high learning curve of 1.5 years that finally took me back to my home city Kolkata and to IBM, where I continue to function as an Instructional Designer for the Learning and Knowledge department of IBM India GBS (Global Business Services).

 

Q: You started your career in financial services and now you are working with IBM as an Instructional Designer. How different has the change been?

Aparajita: The change has been drastic in many ways, and smooth in some. The Banking culture is high on the stress factor, and long working hours, which in some cases extended to seven days a week. But due to the business setup of having teams physically present, it does create its own comfortable rapport and bonding. The IT industry on the other hand is less stressful with mostly five-day working weeks. But because most teams are virtually located across the country and internationally, there is a lack of personal touch in interaction between teams and bosses which tends to be mostly through the laptop/phone/web conference. There are some situations where I have worked for 2 years on a continuous basis with some colleagues and yet never met them face to face.

 

Q: If you were to recall your favorite moment at Infinity what would that be?

Aparajita: Mr. Batra‘s classes. It was a mixture of fear and awe and the heady excitement as his personal approach towards the subject and the world of management, made all of us want to be the Indian Warren Buffets. Also, one statement of his that I try to apply at every work that I do - If you are going to sign on a document, literally or not, better be proud of it and know what you have signed on, or don’t sign at all.

 

Q: From your MBA days, we know that you have a passion and flair for writing. Do you still manage to do so?

Aparajita: I did write occasionally. Later on, as the urge became to become more structured rather than writing freestyle, I developed an interest to explore the possibility of screenplay writing or rather scriptwriting for movies. Apart from that I am exploring the genre of horror but via short stories. No prizes for guessing that the idols are Stephen King and Edgar Allan Poe. Apart from that, I do some freelance writing for some web sites occasionally.

 

Q: Is there anything else you are passionate about besides writing?

Aparajita: Art installations and oil/charcoal painting. Both are creative endeavors that I find extremely stimulating to the left brain after the daily right-brained grind at the professional front. The other passion that I am beginning to develop is cooking different cuisines for my family.

 

Q: What’s the question I didn’t ask you but should have?

Aparajita: None for now! This set of questions has been a nostalgic experience and a very enjoyable one at that.