Smitha Chandrashekar: Spearheading The Firms Legal Activities With Years Of Expertise | CEOInsights Vendor
Smitha Chandrashekar: Spearheading The Firms Legal Activities With Years Of Expertise

Smitha Chandrashekar: Spearheading The Firms Legal Activities With Years Of Expertise

 Smitha Chandrashekar,     Legal Director

Smitha Chandrashekar

Legal Director

A good understanding of the law is key to properly running your business and without it, a business might be at risk of legal complications. An expert law professional can help the board in making informed decisions when negotiating contracts or dealing with hostile third parties. Spearheading the legal formalities of an organization, a legal director ensures that the organization's operations comply with all applicable laws and regulations. Ensuring efficiency in every business operation of the organization, Smitha Chandrashekar is skillfully managing and contributing to the legal department of Harman International India.

Smitha’s comprehensive legal career of twenty years includes the expertise gained from multiple industries and cross border transactions. In her glorious career, she has been felicitated with various awards that include but not limited to the Best General Counsel Award and Powerful Women in Intellectual Property.

Smitha Chandrashekar engages in an interactive session with the CEO Insights Magazine, let’s hear from her.

Tell us about your professional background and experiences. What kind of guidelines and methodologies do you follow as a leader?
I have worked as a general counsel for almost twenty years, amidst which the majority of those years were spent in the Asia-Pacific region, and I have also been actively involved in initiatives around the world. Well, I believe my grandfather
is the one who instilled the idea quite early in my head that I should become a lawyer. Eventually, I believe I was just able to nurture that and realize that dream.

I believe that a leader should always set a good example for those who follow him and that a leader should also be committed to doing their best. You must instill that drive in your team, and you must also have faith in them to let them carry out their tasks with enthusiasm and to go above & beyond the call of duty. As a leader, you must pave the way for your team's success, serve as an example, establish the standards and support your group.

As a leader, you have to create that path of success for your team, set that example, set the expectations, and then back your team

How would you define Harman International India as an organization?
Since Harman has made significant long term investments in both the company's assets and its products, the company without a doubt is a market leader. The leaders have a very clear vision for the organization's short, medium and long term objectives everything is already in place. Harman invests in more than just technology, in addition to becoming the market leader and a fantastic place to work. It also invests heavily in other areas. To start, we have committed to achieving carbon neutrality as a corporation by 2040, which means we will endeavor to preserve the environment.

How do you overcome the challenges while establishing your self as a successful leader in the legal domain?
I began my career in Singapore, where I was employed at one of the UK-based law firms. I had to adjust myself to their work standards, as I was unfamiliar with their working style, be it writing an email or giving any client an advice. My challenges might involve a legal issue today, a management related issue
tomorrow, or even the dynamics of how I interact with the management. You only need to pay attention to the issue, analyze it, and then deal with the specific challenge or circumstance. As long as you can use some common sense and logic, you can overcome the difficulties on your own.

How do you keep yourself updated with the latest developments in your industry? What is your roadmap for the future?
I engage in a variety of activities, and one of them is networking with other business executives. This is a great way to learn about your sector or company, as well as the general state of the market. The second is actively taking part in numerous seminars and conferences where you can interact with people in your industry. In addition, I believe reading and becoming familiar with every legal or regulatory update is another important aspect.

Although I'm in a good place right now, it's not enough, I want to see both my career and personal development grow bigger. There is so much more to do in addition to my urge to ascend the ladder. The next short term objective that I have is to assume a global role, probably within the next five years.

What advice would you like to give to youngsters who are aspiring to be future leaders in this domain?
Today's youngsters are bright and infact, they know much more than us, but there is no shortcut to success. Thence, keep on putting in the hard work and act wisely. You can't just keep working hard, you got to be smart as well. And if you're not smart, you just won't get to the top.

Smitha Chandrashekar, Legal Director, Harman International India
As the Legal Director of Harman International India, Smitha ensures the execution of legal formality of the organization efficiently and provides timely and sound advice to the management.

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