Over the past year, what changes have you seen happen within OSG in how our teams and projects operate?
Necessity is the mother of all inventions. No one ever imagined that people could work remotely and produce phenomenal results. No one ever imagined that even such a possibility existed. The pandemic has forced us to shut our house doors, and magically change it into an office. At OSG, this has opened new ways of working together within teams and across teams. Availability of meeting rooms are no longer a barrier. Multiple teams are bridged by our use of Microsoft Teams. Collaboration has increased many times over, as people started to realize that using these technology tools is not a “cool” thing, but a necessity. I have seen people striving to collaborate deeper within the organization to stay in touch with their roots. We could see a new world within OSG, where there are no boundaries and no walls between divisions and teams.
What changes do you see happening in the industries OSG operates in?
Not just OSG, but the world at large is innovating and finding ways to reach their customers. This past year has turned out to be a period of introspection. Our customers have been reaching out to their customers digitally in more innovative ways than before. They also have been finding new ways of delivering their services or products. Several of our customers have come to realize the need to understand their customers deeper so that they can strategize on how to take their products to them and how to deliver their services with quality.
Due to the pandemic, how have you adapted your own work and communication style to working from home?
The walls have eroded between office and home. Hence it has become an imperative to draw lines between what constitutes your workspace and what is your home space. Children have also started to learn this rapidly as their school and home remains the same. They would not like to be disturbed in their school; they have also learned to respect those lines that separate their school from my workspace. Yes, it took some time to come to terms with this for everyone in the family.
Communication styles also has evolved. We all have become more conscious in communication to ensure that there are less gaps in our understanding. Technology has played a major role and collaboration tools have quickly adapted itself to cater to different working environments.
How do you think working from home and handling the pandemic will impact OSG’s work culture and environment, looking to the future?
Working from home is here to stay. People have quickly adapted to and accepted the new standard of working remotely. Boundaries have vanished. Recruitment has gone through a sea of change. Location of office is no longer a barrier for someone to join OSG. This will bring in fresh ideas and minds to OSG as physical boundaries vanish. OSG also needs to tread consciously as we can lose talents for the same reasons. People perceived the world, to be flat and then to be round. After this pandemic, the world is perceived digitally with no shape or dimensions.
Since location is no more a barrier, people come across talent through all areas, since they’re able to be recruited, hired, and work remotely. Our challenges and obstacles are similar to before and our gaps are similar to when we worked in-person, but it has been interesting that everyone has been able to be across India and even across the globe, working seamlessly on our products.
Any tips for working from home, staying mindful of your work-life balance, and taking care of yourself during the pandemic?
This is quite an important topic and not an easy one to implement. We tend to be ‘Always on’ from the work front. We need to be mindful of how long we work, how well we draw boundaries between your office space and home space. How we attribute priorities to events that are happening around you that defy the boundaries of office and home space.
Any interesting or fun stories of working from home?
A lot indeed. Especially when your time space overlaps with the kids play time space and you have an important client meeting or internal meeting. I definitely wish we had walls that could absorb outside noise like a blackhole.
Any hobbies or interests you’ve picked up during this time?
Gardening has been an interesting hobby I have picked up. There is a lot to learn from these little green creatures which can sprout out of nowhere and withstand the difficult times and a few seeking your attention all the time. It is always interesting to keep guessing which plant comes up, defying your logic of what you seeded in.
As our technology-based solutions evolve, do you see the purpose and values of OSG changing?
The purpose and values of OSG remains the same – pursuit of excellence in understanding customers and their behaviors. What does change is a new perspective in how you can solve problems with technology.
What are some of the biggest successes you have seen at OSG?
Our biggest successes: our ability to be agile, our ability to have a flat organization despite increase in organization size, our ability to focus on revenue-generating mechanisms, and our ability to stay focused on recurring revenues through software products and technology.
We are adopting agile processes for our development and technology teams. This has been helpful in being able to gauge the market needs and quickly shifting in strategy to meet those needs. For example, we have reviews at the end of each sprint, and these are included in the design of the next sprint. This helps us understand what gaps we have as well as what the market expectations are.
What does the future look like for OSG?
The future is bright with new avenues of customer growth. The death of third-party cookies will also mean the end of monopoly by Internet giants and open a plethora of business opportunities for OSG as we play a critical role in helping our clients understand their customers deeper. The pandemic has also made our clients think deeper on their strategy to focus on diving deeper into customer’s mind on what they want and why they want. OSG has a wonderful role to play in adding value in this space.