Sarojkant Singh: Setting New Milestones With Innovation In Core Engineering Industry | CEOInsights Vendor
 Sarojkant Singh: Setting New Milestones With Innovation In Core Engineering Industry

Sarojkant Singh: Setting New Milestones With Innovation In Core Engineering Industry

  Sarojkant Singh ,   Group Head & General Manager

Sarojkant Singh

Group Head & General Manager

With the increasing demand for innovative and sustainable technologies, engineers are constantly challenged to develop cutting-edge solutions that meet the needs of critical industries of the country, essential to drive economic growth and improve quality of life. Sarojkant Singh, Group Head General Manager at McNally Bharat Engineering Company Ltd. (MBE), is heading one of the leading engineering companies in India engaged in providing turnkey solutions in the areas of power, steel, aluminium, material handling, and more. With immense experience and an understanding of tacit knowledge, Sarojkant Singh is driving growth and innovation at MBE. Let’s hear from him.

Tell us about your leadership approach. What are the guidelines or methodologies you follow as a leader?
As a leader, earning respect through exemplary behavior is only 20 percent of the battle, as most of our knowledge is tacit. Sri Ramakrishna's analogy of sins flying back after washing in the Ganges river applies to the human mind, where respect can fizzle out once the influence is gone. To ingrain respect, it must be constantly reinforced. However, there is a way to enter the tacit through the secret opening in the heart, with the key being eternal consciousness. Now here’s the secret- to get the key, you need to have sincere faith to do good to the person, and with this intent, you enter the tacit. I believe leadership is a misnomer. The leader and followers are the same entity when in harmony, which is why you hear the word servant leader nowadays. The Sebait of a temple is but an iconography of this fact.

What are the major projects that you have undertaken till now? How did you overcome the challenges associated with them, and what did you learn from them?
I have experience working on large scale projects in the steel and power sectors including
commissioning a 204 m2 sinter plant and working in various integrated steel plants and coal projects. However, my most challenging project was a 100 MW ground-mounted solar power project in 2019, where PV module prices from China had increased, impacting the project's cost. To mitigate this, we collaborated with SERIS Singapore and deployed a 24x7 inspection agency, reducing the installed capacity of the modules, which had cascading savings. The logistics of importing and storing the modules and erecting them was also a challenging experience. During the project, the company underwent restructuring and had to go through the NCLT process, where we had to value the company and receive a bid of Rs.425 Cr. The NCLT process was time-bound, and valuing the company was a complex experience. Despite being an asset light business, MBE received a higher value than Sayaji (its subsidiary), which had a net block of Rs. 70 Cr.

Sacrifice is necessary getting a fat cheque at the end of the month will give superficial satisfaction only when you reach and imprint on the tacit knowledge of others will you taste the real nectar

What is the future destination you are heading towards?
I am pursuing my Ph.D. at ICFAI Jharkhand, focusing on human factors and project strategy. I aim to document my professional knowledge and experience for young professionals to benefit from. The core sector has a massive skill deficit, and I aspire to bridge the gap between industry and academia. The Jindal schools in Dallas and India are already doing fantastic work in skill development, and I want to build a similar research, analysis, and application (RA2)facility in the future. I am associated with a startup called Purahsara, which focuses on bridging the skill gap, and I am also conducting training for new interns with guidance from IIT Kharagpur and IIT Guwahati. We are working on various emerging technologies such as hydrogen from biomass, briquette plant for coalfired plants, and solar power.

I want to implement a company transformation process called
Syntegration, which handles complexity and has enormous potential when applied to projects. It is a process that has not yet been applied to projects in India, and I believe it can benefit the country significantly. I also want to introduce System Dynamics into mainstream project planning, a method introduced by Jay Forrester, which captures dynamic complexity through stock and flow diagrams and helps in decision-making in business.

In light of your strong experience within the industry, what advice would you give to budding industry leaders?
Firstly, passion lies in the core sector, and we must stop the exodus to the IT sector. Learning coding is good, but young engineers should serve the core sector. There is an excellent opportunity in the core sector. I will advise all young aspiring leaders with a passion, to work in the steel, manufacturing, and hardcore sectors, and the world will be at their feet. We have to understand that sitting in AC rooms will not bring change, one has to sweat it out to get knowledge and transfer it, as the saying goes “ the best metal comes out of the hottest furnace”.To the fairly seasoned, apart from work, give time to your family and society, because one has to lead in all affairs of one’s life.

Sarojkant Singh, Group Head & General Manager, Mc Nally Bharat Engineering Company
Born in Odisha, Sarojkant Singh spent his early childhood in Kumardhubi, a manufacturing hub that influenced his career path. He pursued BE in Mechanical from Bengal Engineering College and MS from the University of Sheffield, where he researched combustion instabilities and control. He worked in the power sector in Budapest and Siemens VAI before joining L&T, where he spent eight years working on domestic and international projects in the integrated steel plant sector. He joined McNally Bharat in 2017, where he took up a strategic role and helped revive the company from a financial crisis. Saroj kant's passion for learning led him to earn an Executive MBA from ISB Hyderabad, where he met some exceptional individuals who inspired him.

Hobbies:Trekking, Writing, Networking, Research, Reading
Favorite Cuisine: Continental
Favorite Book: Tacit by Michael Polanyi
Favorite Travel Destination:London
Awards & Recognition: Best paper award for an article on Corporate Social Responsibility, D.Litt from Commonwealth Open University

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