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V. Ramaswamy: A Leader who Commenced His Journey from the Rock-Bottom

V. Ramaswamy: A Leader who Commenced His Journey from the Rock-Bottom

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V. Ramaswamy, CEO“Of all the things I’ve done the most vital is coordinating those who work with me and aiming their efforts at a certain goal,” says Walt Disney, founder of Disney. These words from one of the greatest leaders of all time remind today’s leaders about the eternal need for understanding their team mates and being on the same page. Needless to say, it’s easier said than done and takes never forgetting how it feels in their shoes. Comprehending this elementary fact and in turn being a people’s person have always been vital in theanecdote of V. Ramaswamy, CEO, Cargowings Logistics, which is one of India’s leading carrier of finished automobiles. Having commenced his career with MRF as a trainee, Ramaswamy over the years has chiseled his stepping stones with decades of experience.

After 25 years of association with MRF, which saw him growing into the hat of its Puducherry plant’s Quality Assurance Head, Ramaswamy deliberately on boarded a new challenge and entered into the Supply Chain and Logistics domain. It in fact was a major turning point in his life. Before joining Cargowings as its CEO, he worked with TVS Logistics Services, Chennai as a General Manager nearly nine years. He continued to chisel his stepping stones, but this time to the leadership role.

He joined Cargowings four years ago, and it’s been an exceptional leadership journey for him ever since then, thanks to his more than three decades of experience of working closely with employees. He
executed the company’s growth plans in an exemplary way. CEO Insights is humbled to interview Ramaswamy to know more about his journey over the years.

Having commenced his career with MRF as a trainee, Ramaswamy over the years has chiseled his stepping stones with decades of experience


What made you take on this new challenge with Cargowings?
The CMD of Cargowings, PV Subramani, while asking me to join as the CEO, had a very specific task for me in his mind. He wanted me to set a vision for the business, strategy to execute it and systematically achieve it. The trust & confidence he had in me was really compelling. This equipped me to further do something impacting and rewarding for the organization. Having prepared the vision statements, the first major challenge was to make the business viable within a period of three years. We achieved this as team through various initiatives towards process improvement and empowering our high-performing team. The initiatives include operational excellence programs, enhancement of technology interface and driver engagement. Innovate, Accomplish, Sustain & Lead is our mantra.

What were the strategies adopted to understand the teams and keep all of them on the same page?
The primary challenge was that the employees had to accept me as one of their own. I could connect with them easily as I have always been working closely with my people. In Cargowings, the traditional concept and mindset of the employees were initially really difficult to change. With a realistic and relatable vision, and by understanding the abilities of each team member and making sure that it’s conveyed perfectly, we slowly transformed their mindset and helped them find their best
versions. Since, we could align with the overall theme of excellence, positive growth in all parameters was achieved.

It sure is a time consuming process. How do you manage your worklife balance?
It definitely is. However I had a Boss, who would always insist on the importance of spending quality time with the family. My family has always been my strength. My paternal grandfather who was a self made person with great leadership qualities & human values, has been my greatest inspiration. My parents gave me the best education beyond their capacity. My mother was my first teacher, who always believed in me. My father taught me how to be a man of honesty and integrity in both personal and professional lives. My sister was also a great motivator and friend who always stood by my side. Moreover if I am successful today, the major credit goes to my wife Rajeshwari. She is my greatest cheer leader, and a pillar of strength and support.

Are you engaged with any sort of mentoring programs?
I am very glad to be able to share my passion as a mentor or advisor with five startups in the last two years. It’s a great feeling that all of them have accelerated to the phase of enhancing value to their customers and the ecosystem they are aligned with. Two of them have become global players as well.

Key Management:
V. Ramaswamy, CEO
Ramaswamy possesses more than three decades of professional experience. A B.Sc in Chemistry from New College in Madras University and a BS in Industrial Management from BITS Pilani he is highly skilled in Business Planning, Telematics, Supply Chain Management, Knowledge Management, Software Project Management, and Manufacturing Quality Assurance.

Favorites:
•Hobbies: Playing golf with friends, reading, and walking & traveling with family.
•Travel Destinations: UK, Switzerland & UAE