At a Glance
Mahesh Vinayagam, CEO & Founder, qBotica Inc
Focus Areas: RPA, Startups, AI, Digital Transformation
Thinkers360 In-Depth Profile & Portfolio: Mahesh Vinayagam
Thinkers360 Leaderboards: Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on Ecosystems (October 2021), Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on RPA (September 2021), Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on Startups (May 2021)
Thought Leader Interview
Thinkers360 thought leader interviews profile prominent members of the Thinkers360 community who embody the power of ideas in their work. In this edition, we speak with Mahesh Vinayagam, CEO & Founder at qBotica. Mahesh brings over 20 years of extensive experience assisting businesses to improve their services in fields as RPA, AI, and Digital Transformation. He is also an entrepreneur, speaker, consultant, and RPA evangelist.
He was recently featured in the Thinkers360 Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on Ecosystems (October 2021) as well as Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on RPA (September 2021).
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Thinkers360: Tell us a bit about your background and areas of expertise
MV: I come from the technology industry and the outsourcing world, and I have been there for twenty-five years. In the last seven to eight years, I was in the automation space, and I got quite fascinated by the industry and started qBotica.
On a personal note, I started my journey in India, moved to the UK about 20 years ago, and then to the US. I have been in this country for about 14 years now.
Thinkers360: What are your current responsibilities and what’s a typical day look like?
MV: I am the CEO and the founder of qBotica. As a founder, I wear many hats – my responsibilities include pretty much anything and everything going on within the firm, from identifying the talent that will help us grow the company, to defining the funding sources to ensure the company is viable, to planning the growth plans to take the business to the next level.
On top of that, being a leader, inspiring the team to think big, setting up a vision and roadmap for the company, and helping the team understand that vision and translate it into an action plan. While they are actioning their plan, I help them manage that too, ensuring we are we doing the work at a decent pace within the budget, etc.
Most importantly, bringing in the outside-in and inside-out perspective to the business, anchoring sales, bringing customers into our ecosystem, and making sure the customer understands the value that our organization brings to them. From a messaging standpoint, are our messages on point? Are we telling the right things to attract the customers? And when the customers come in, how do we position our value? Making sure that the customers are receiving the right service. So that is the outside-in perspective, and from an inside-out standpoint, it is very important for any organization to have the right talent, so I make sure that I keep looking for those talents, and bring them into the company. And creating a vision and a purpose for them to continue working with us. And making sure that all of this in sync, that the customer expectations and our vision, and our ideas are in pace with what the customer wants.
On the other side is a lot of perception management with industry analysts that comment on us, that we will try to help customers, right products, right partners. So, we need to have a relationship with those analysts to really continue to brief them about our progress about who we are and what we do. So that is another angle that I handle from an analyst relations perspective. So, administration, sales, and internal team management – those are my primary responsibilities.
Thinkers360: What’s the favorite part of your current role?
MV: My favorite part of my current role is interacting with the team and understanding what their goals in life and their careers are, and why they chose qBotica to be part of their career growth.
So, interacting with the team and helping them meet their dreams is the main motivator is for me.
For example, when one of my close associates in the firm, called me one day and he said, how his satisfaction has gone up and his family’s very proud of what he is today. His friends call and congratulate him on his growth at the firm. And, and he was very thankful to qBotica for providing that platform for him to grow. Another story that I heard just last week was with one of our employees, where she said she showed her dad the website and showed her picture on the website. She explained that this is what she does. And she said that her dad, who is normally very stern and does not smile that often, had a wide grin. This was the second time ever that she saw him grinning. The first time was when she received her graduation certificate.. And she said, “I saw my dad having the same feeling today when he saw me on the website.”
I think these are moments to celebrate. And I think that is why we exist as a company. You know, if I must earn money, I could always do a job. But that is not what it is about. It is about creating a moment. Making people believe in the vision, believe in the company, believe in me, just to think that you know that we can take them places, we can get them somewhere better than where they are right now. So, I think interacting with people and making those moments are the most enjoyable parts of the job.
Thinkers360: How do you utilize Thinkers360?
MV: I think Thinkers360 are doing a really good job in terms of identifying key players in a variety of technologies. So, we are just using that to get our name out there to understand the peers in the marketplace. And try to see if those peers can bring us value as a company.
Editor’s Note: See Mahesh’s Thinkers360 In-Depth Profile & Portfolio.
Thinkers360: How do you like to work with brands who wish to engage you as a thought leader?
MV: We would love to work in a relationship where it is a partnership, where both parties have vested interest, and, and they mutually work together to get both parties interest up. So that is one way of engagement. The other way of engagement is a transaction or a reference-based engagement where one-party benefits from the other party’s services.
For us, they could work with us as vendors, or work with us to partner on developing their ideas, bringing their ideas to implementation and execution.
The other way to engage would be a fireside chat. I like to talk and if they want to set up some time to discuss some topics around automation, technology, community building, or social causes, I would be interested in discussing those. I am very much involved in community causes and talent building in the communities. I have worked with several different organizations that work with emerging talent, high schoolers, graduates, tech entrepreneurs, startups. And so as a mentor, as a community builder, I would love to address these relevant topics as well.
Thinkers360: What’s your main advice for upcoming thought leaders?
MV: My key advice for anyone looking to become a future thought leader is that every interaction counts. And you have to be engaging in every interaction, whether it is a social media comment, an in-person meetup, or even an email. Make every interaction meaningful, and impressionable.
The other one is to be curious. If you are curious enough to learn, and absorb things, and if you make your interactions engaging, you have it made. So, if you talk to someone from Turkey or Idaho, places that you have not been, and if you don’t know them enough, you may not be able to have a great conversation. You can have a transactional interaction, but those interactions may not be that impressionable that they can carry with them for life. So how do you make that interaction more meaningful is by being curious in the past, and collecting information as you go, and then applying that to the interaction. So, I think it is very important to make every interaction meaningful and impressive. And for that, you had to work harder to be curious and learn several different things.
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