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Prem Kamble -  Strengths and Achievements

1.    Commitment to Customer - "Polite but Firm"

2.    Commitment to Timely and 'to-Spec' Delivery

3.    Commitment to IT Folks/Team Building

4.    Commitment to Technology Excellence with Business Focus

5.    Missionary Zeal Required for Start-ups

 

 

1.    Commitment to Customer - "Polite but Firm"

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I had created a record of maximum repeat orders in a SEI Level 5 company. I had excellent relations with the clients and won their confidence.

I attribute this success to two strengths:

  • Commitment to Customer's Long Term Benefits
  • Ability to Manage Customer's Expectations

" I have rarely seen projects delivered both on time and to specifications even in UK. "

-  Michael Bournat, MD, CQR Technologies, UK, on CQR Talisman Project delivered on time and to specifications.

If you are committed to the customer's long term benefit, you must be strong at managing the customers' expectations. This is a very critical factor for success of software projects and ultimate, long term client satisfaction. You may give short - term satisfaction to your client by yielding to client pressure, but often times, you need to follow the policy of "POLITE but FIRM" in the long term interest of the client. I have usedthis policy quite effectively.

It is important to create an atmosphere where we sincerely work for a long term win-win relationship with client.  I have succeeded in winning the trust and adopting a policy of collaboration with my client. I have been able to convince the client that that is the only way to succeed in an IT Project.

Michael Hammer, the father of BPR created a golden rule for process redesign when he said, "Obliterate, Do not Automate". Similarly my golden rule for effective and successful automation is "Collaborate, Do not Confront".


2.    Commitment to Timely and 'to-Spec' Delivery

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I created a record of delivering all my projects on time to the utmost delight of my customers in a SEI Level 5 company. (click here to read my real life success story).

"The Management of Mondaq is shocked to know that the project went live on the date it was supposed to. "

-  Charles Ashton, IT Director, Mondaq,  UK  my first client at DSQ   Read success story  

I believe that our ability to deliver on time is linked with our integrity. I used to kick start a project with a team meeting where I made it clear to the team that we will show our integrity by honouring our word given to the customer - we have given a commitment of a delivery date, we WILL deliver by that date. On hindsight, I see three key factors which led to timely delivery of all my projects:

  • Integrity and Commitment to Delivery
  • Commitment to People and Team building (See next section)
  •  "Polite but Firm" Policy of managing the client. This helped control the single most reason for delay - scope creep.


3.    Commitment to IT Folks/Team Building

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I have had the record of highest retention of Managers or immediate subordinates.

I have been successful with my team on three critical fronts:

  • Developing common people to become experts and not ordinary players. (see my true stories)
  • Retention
  • Motivating them to give their best

To top it all, I have been able to create teams where the individual strengths are used and individual weaknesses are covered by overall team strength. (click here to read my real life success story). As a result I have worked with very lean teams and low cost.

They say people leave bosses, not jobs. I have been lucky that throughout my career, I have not seen my immediate deputies leave. My people gave their heart and soul to the work when they worked for me.

" All that you need to give Kamble is ordinary people with hands and legs, you don't need to give him developers. "

Mr. S Nagarajan, Group CIO, Essar Group on my ability to train and get the best of very ordinary people.

I know the pulse of the IT folks. I know what motivates them, what upsets them, and what keeps them going. At the same time I empathise with them. I know that the sword of obsolescence is always hanging on their neck. This can throw them out of job and this is always a risk and concern. Having known their ambitions and fears, I have been able to give them the best environment to work and environment of learning. Not learning for learning sake, but with an objective to learn what is required to contribute to the company. I give very focussed learning opportunities which can help the company get into new business or adopt new technology relevant to the company's business. This way, company benefits and the team is also motivated.

I have a clear focus on business. I make it clear to all my team members too that all our efforts and learning should be aimed to finally contribute to business. IT folks have really worked very hard for me and delivered their best. I understand their feelings and am committed to give them the best, and in return they have given me their best.  I believe that it is as easy to motivate an IT guy as it is easy to upset him.

Though I delivered all my projects on time, I never forced my team members to come on weekends, nor did I have to work on weekends. They came on their own whenever required, they stayed for nights whenever required, but I never had to ask them to put extra time. I have managed with low cost and less people. All the projects which were completed on time were all led by 'first-time Project Managers',  or people who were leading projects for the first time in their career. I have trained raw people, created experts out of ordinary people as I always demand total expertise in a given area.

 

4.    Commitment to Technology Excellence with Business Focus

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" We are thrilled to death "

-   Jeffery Wu, CEO, Claritas llc, CEO, Enternet Technologies, USA, (while speaking to DSQ's MD on arrival in India to place repeat order) - C++, ASP Project  

I have been successful in implementing systems successfully in the most difficult situations. (click here to read my real life story of implementation success)

I attribute this success to the following two qualities:

  • Business orientation (click here to read my real life story of business benefit)
  • My deep understanding of and research on this technology's inherent pitfalls and ways to avoid them. (see paper)

I am strong in technology and have a strong technology orientation, but also a strong focus on business. I am clear that technology is for business and hence am able to guide IT folks to deliver. I am clear that all our efforts on technology are worth nothing unless there is a business benefit. Hence I make sure that the technology projects are fully implemented and used by the people.

At the same time I have clarity as I have done my own unique research on this technology, its strengths and weaknesses. Through my research, I have identified the mindset issues and real pitfalls of this technology, and hence I know how to avoid them to successfully use this technology. It is the technology which is to be blamed for failures and not people. I have been able to use this knowledge to carry people along to successful implementation of complex applications under challenging situations. 


5.    Missionary Zeal Required for Start-ups

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" If Kamble has done it in Hazira, it is a miracle "

- Mr. BV Suryakumar, Director Commercial, Essar Group (Now Director, Ambalal Sarabhai), on my successful computerisation at a new startup company in record time under difficult conditions at Essar Projects, Hazira, Surat

Finally, I have been successful at setting up start-ups. I have built committed teams and set up and nurtured new departments with missionary zeal. With my skill to develop my immediate deputies, I can help build up and when required, hand over to someone to carry further and grow.

My firmness and confidence comes from the strong research and understanding of this field. I have complete clarity of thought with respect to what works for people and what does not, what are right and wrong practices for long term success of an IT project, .

 


Summary of References:

Please see my following real life case studies/success stories:

  • Business OrientationArticle in Times of India how I made direct contribution to business through automation
  • People Orientation: Article on successful team building to deliver all projects on time
  • Result Orientation:  Article in Computers Today on Implementation Strategy to ensure that a difficult application was successfully implemented and used.
  • On Skill Building   Three case studies of how very ordinary and inexperienced people were able to give extraordinanry performance.

 

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