Article: #27 Bharti Airtel: Recharging the Workplace

Employee Engagement

#27 Bharti Airtel: Recharging the Workplace

Have a new brainwave but hesitant to share it with your seniors at work? Don’t be as Bharti Airtel’s Reverse Mentoring project gives employees the perfect opportunity to present their new ideas and latest developments with the Business Board members.
 

the organization has a strong leadership which believes in motivating its employees by empowering them with responsibilities and challenges

 

Have a new brainwave but hesitant to share it with your seniors at work? Don’t be as Bharti Airtel’s Reverse Mentoring project gives employees the perfect opportunity to present their new ideas and latest developments with the Business Board members.
As one of Asia’s leading integrated telecom service providers, the organization has a strong leadership which believes in motivating its employees by empowering them with responsibilities and challenges. It also believes in continuous innovation and adapting to change, says Krish Shankar, Director - HR, Bharti Airtel. “The telecom industry is at a point of inflection at this time and we see it moving predominately from voice to data services. In the next three years, a larger part of our revenues will be generated from newer services. There is a need to understand the talent and skill set required fitting in this change.”
The process of identifying right talent sets off early with a Young Leader Program (YLP). Premier business schools are visited by the company and talent is brought in as ‘YLs’ after 6 months of intense cross functional training are put on challenging and stretching roles. The objective of the program is to create a talent pool for achieving superior business results and organizational growth. It aids in identifying potential leaders to be future senior managers of Bharti Airtel, and provides a framework for career and succession planning for management cadre in the company.
Some of the practices executed by the company for managing and engaging talent include Business Leader Acceleration program (BLeAP), which identifies and develops high potential middle management leaders and prepares them for COO or similar critical national functional roles; Emerging Leader Acceleration Program (ELeAP), which looks at building the critical skills (like leadership, conflict resolution, effective collaboration, etc) through a mix of workshops and action learning activities for developing first level business leaders; Mentoring and coaching of high potential by business board members; Robust career paths for succession planning; Well defined organizational talent review for identifying successors; ‘Open Door Policy’ where employees can walk up to anybody for raising their issues and problems; Retention / Exit interviews, which are conducted to understand the reason why an employee is leaving the organization and to enable employees to raise any issue / grievance, etc with the reporting manager / Functional Head / HR Head, etc. All this is encouraged in an open and transparent working environment.
Bharti Airtel ranks #27 in the Great Place to Work® Institute’s Study, #1 in the Industry Category of the Telecommunications, and #4 in the category of Best Company in Large Organizations (with more than 10,000 employees). When asked Shankar what makes Bharti Airtel a great workplace, he responds with poise and confidence, “Bharti Airtel ensures that its employees have the empowerment to do whatever he / she wants to do, that is, to unleash their entrepreneurial spirit! Employees should do the things they have never done before and learn to grow from their experiences. For me, being a great workplace means that employees should have the conviction that they can achieve personal growth and satisfy career aspirations. Having a good cafeteria or a huge office are all enabling factors but not the end itself; having employees who have trust in you as an organization and the confidence to succeed is what makes an organization a great workplace!”

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Topics: Employee Engagement, Culture, #BestPractices

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