Praveen Kumar
Current Organization L&T Infotech Limited
Designation HR Global Talent Strategist
Previous Organization(s) Infosys Ltd.

Belongs to (place from)

Patna, Bihar

MADS Interest

Cooking

Favorite MADS Personalities

Sachin Tendulkar

Life Mantra

Live every movement of life as it is the last second.

I draw inspirations from

Mahatma Gandhi

Had I not been an HR Professional then

Bureaucrat

At what point in your life did you decide to take up HR as your career? What were the guiding / motivating factors?

I began working as a trainer and at some point in my life I felt like it’s time to move on, so I tried to figure out and found that HR profession is more interesting as it keeps you engaged with people from different walks of life. This most importantly lets me learn and experience new things every day and this is what motivated me and drove me to take HR as a profession.

HR is one practice that touches human lives directly. Do you think employers and specially HR Professional can play role in reducing stress levels of employees through various employee engagement initiatives?

On an average, an employee sustains in a company for two-four years in recent time. Employee engagement is indeed a vital practice because if the employees are disengaged then organisation cannot function properly. The importance of employee engagement can't be overstated – employee engagement initiatives have been proven to reduce stress, improve productivity and efficiency, retain customers at a higher rate, and make more profits. Most importantly, engaged employees are happier, both at work and in their lives.

What are some of the most important employee engagement initiatives that you have taken in the previous organisation? How Music, Art, Dance or Sports can be a factor of engagement in the organisation?

Some organisations carry out these activities once in a year whereas some do it periodically. Previously I have conducted an exercise through an inhouse developed tool called – ‘Stay In’ calculator. This tool clearly captures data on factors of engagement and disengagement. This data can give strategic inference at each level of the organisation, if analysed properly. 

Music, dance, sports can be a good motivator if you can have cross functional teams competing against each other in an event. It enhances engagement index as well as team collaboration.
 

Do you think time and cost for employee engagements are an investment for the organisation and can help in multi-fold returns?

Yes, as I said earlier, larger employee disengagements lead to attrition. Normally attrition cost is130% when a new one is hired. Higher engagement level enhances productivity level which leads to higher revenue. Although ROI on engagement activities are difficult to monetize but its importance is manifold. Engaged employees are more interested and passionate about their work. This often results in greater innovation as these individuals feel more connected to the organization and strive to bring good ideas and improvements forward. 
A highly engaged individual is more likely to provide outstanding customer service and deliver a more positive experience. They're more likely to pay attention to the details that will help ensure that the customer is satisfied with the product or service they received.
 

Do you feel there is a need even to reach out to the family of employees so that they get better connected to the company? Have you undertaken any such initiative in your past or current organization?

Family is an integral part of one’s life. Today’s number of hours spent by the millennial workforce is decreasing steadily with their family members. So, it is very important for the organisations to cater to activities and give flexibility to their employees to interact with their families. Some of them live away from their families which increases dependency ratio which can be seen in Japan and other first world countries. Higher work hour increases personal agony, stress and disconnect which ultimately affect both personal and professional life. 

What is the one change that you would like to bring in HR practice that has potential to boost employees work-life balance?

Workspace design should be planned such a way that it interacts live with the human, because implementation of AI & Machine Learning is decreasing human interaction steadily. Gig Economy is a new concept which may come to India very soon. So, organisations should be ready for the new business models through digitisation and automation.

I personally feel that Wednesday should be ‘Work from Home’ wherever it is possible in the organisation
 

What are your personal interests in Music, Art, Dance or Sports and how do you continue to pursue it?

I enjoy cooking and I am a sportsperson. The sports activities/Gym facilities in the office brings dual benefits for the employee in terms of health and engagement. Regular events should be organised in these domains for a better and inclusive workplace.

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