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To My Mentor With Love


It is commonly heard that in a lifetime we all meet at least five people who have a long lasting impact on our lives. I can proudly count myself amongst those lucky few who have been the beneficiaries of the investment of many mentors.

I have been trained under many Gurus but the one who has made the biggest contribution to my personal and professional growth is none other than Dr.Santrupt B. Misra, CEO, Birla Carbon; Director, Chemicals & Director, Group HR, Aditya Birla Management Corporation  Private Limited, an International Corporate figure with the heart of a teacher. My mentor, role model, advisor, trusted friend, motivator, teacher, visionary and above all the one who always stood by me through thick and

Reminiscing back on my association with exceptional
leaders like Dr. Misra, I have observed several attributes that set him apart…. I vividly remember, it was December 2, 2001, I was offered an appointment letter for my new assignment as the Chief Education Officer of the Aditya Birla Group. This was my first venture in the Corporate World, after working in The Doon School
for nearly twenty five years. I can never forget how he honoured my stature and seniority and gave me an opportunity to work under his wings, perhaps envisioning  how mentorship of people like him would help me tread the path of corporate world smoothly, besides, conforming my strong belief that mentorship
transcends age, a classic example of the mentor being
much younger than the mentee.

It is next to impossible to pen down all the things I have
learnt from Dr Misra.

The corporate world was completely alien to me. If not for his guidance I cannot even imagine how I would have survived in this business world. He taught me the ins and outs. From the minutest things like how important it is to acknowledge every email or text, no matter where you are or in which situation. Not only did he induct me into the Corporate World, but facilitated and taught me how to run educational institutions in a corporate manner, introducing accountability, delegation and empowerment of all stake holders and meeting everybody at a common platform.

He is one of those Gurus who don’t believe in preaching but their life in itself is their message.
His actions inspire many like me to dream more, learn more, do more and become more. He empowered me to see a possible opportunity and made me believe it could be accomplished. There are several events which vouch for this when I recount my fond memories and experiences with him. With his trust, work freedom and support I could establish ten World Class Schools in a record time of ten years, and revamp about thirty schools, across the country.
Inspite of his extremely busy schedule, he always guided me in re-structuring the chain of growing fifty two Group schools in fourteen states, working almost in separate islands in an unstructured manner. His uncompromising initiative of re-christening all the schools made all the difference. Under his able guidance, we could formulate several policies and guidelines for smooth and effective functioning of schools and bringing all schools under one banner.
The Aditya Birla Brand Schools, under the mentorship of Dr. Misra has created a niche for themselves in the global education field. The Alumni of schools are placed globally at prestigious positions extending from civil services, defence, medicine, engineering to the corporate world.
Dr. Misra has always been a strong catalyst for career and personal growth, not just for me, but for so many others. He made me realize my latent potential and I could venture out to achieve which seemingly was beyond me.
You are a wonderful teacher, leader, and friend….. you are everything one could look for in a good mentor. You groomed me to be a sound professional and made working with you an interesting and memorable experience. I will  always be grateful to you for your support and kindness.
(Dr. S. Ganguli is Chief Education Officer Aditya Birla Management Corporation Pvt. Ltd.)