Vineet Nayar is the former Chief Executive Officer of HCL Technologies Ltd. (HCLT), a $5.5 billion global information technology services company based in India. Joining the company in 1985 when it had just $4 million in revenue, he held several management positions in the ensuing years, and became president in 2005, CEO in 2007 and vice-chairman in 2010.
Under Vineet Nayar's presidency, HCL went through a period of remarkable transformation driven by an unconventional management approach, known as Employees First, Customers Second:
6X Revenue Increment (from $764 million to $4.7 billion) | 3X Employee Base and Net Income Increment | 2X Market Cap | Highest revenue-per-employee of any India-based company
Vineet Nayar also founded Comnet in 1993, which led the way in the incubation of a new business, Remote Infrastructure Management (RIM), now a multi-billion dollar industry.
Vineet Nayar has introduced the world to a unique brand of energetic and inspirational leadership through his multi-award winning and globally acclaimed book Employees First, Customers Second, which breaks the established notion of corporate hierarchy and boldly states that leadership lies at the bottom of the corporate pyramid.
This philosophy was the bedrock of HCLT's remarkable success, which was a result of putting employees first, especially those working in the “value zone” where company and customer interact through a number of relatively simple catalysts like creating trust through transparency, and reverse accountability (inverting the pyramid).
Vineet Nayar argues that many of these ideas and practices – which Fortune magazine has characterized as “the world’s most modern management” – can be successfully adopted by any company in any industry anywhere in the world, with similar results.
Vineet Nayar has been variously described as the “next Peter Drucker,” “Henry Foyel” and “Maverick CEO” of the “world’s most modern management”—descriptors that provide an apt testimony to his unconventional management and leadership philosophies, radical outlook, brutally honest viewpoints and a career report card that consists of incubating a billion-dollar company and turning around a global IT services major with 600% growth in market cap and 500% growth in revenues.
Leadership is the right you earn and not an entitlement
Nayar believes that leadership is earned through one’s actions every year, every day and in fact every minute. Beginning with the assumption that every person has a leader within who is just waiting to be discovered, Vineet Nayar believes that anyone can unearth it through some non-negotiable fundamentals of leadership.
True leaders don’t make decisions: They make decision-makers
True leaders realize that the greatest power they can wield is awakening the true potential of the team members, and create leaders within the organization.
Nayar believes that turbulent times need “managers” to transform themselves into “Inspirational Leaders”. Those who inspire are trusted, respected and deliver results others will find difficult to even think as possible.