Many of the former students of KIAMS are global ambassadors for the institute, as they carve out a niche for themselves in their chosen fields. Ms. Raji Balachandran Hemalatha, a Senior Finance Analyst with EY GSS, is one of them. After her studies at the institute, Ms. Hemalatha had a reasonably successful stint in the banking sector but she realised that her real interest lay in financial analysis. And the rest, as they say, is history – or in this case, her story.
Today Ms. Hemalatha works with the Global Financial Reporting team within the Finance & Accounts division and her job involves providing reports for EY’s management based on their ad hoc requests. She has definitely created a name for herself in her line of work, but above all, she is happy to be working in a field that excites and motivates her to give her best every day.
Talking about her professional stint after her time at KIAMS she says, “I got a job with ICICI Bank through the campus placements. I was placed in Kerala and my job gave me tremendous learning opportunities. However, I moved to Bangalore for personal reasons and did a short stint with HDFC bank there. In 2010, I made a career switch and joined EY as a Financial Analyst. It’s been a fantastic place to work at ever since.”
Ms. Hemalatha is quick to acknowledge that the journey for her began at KIAMS as that is where she built the self-belief to go after her dreams. Her time at the institute also taught her to take challenges in her stride, something that has helped her throughout her professional career.
She narrates an interesting anecdote from her working days at ICICI, which says a lot about her work ethics, professionalism and personality. “Although I was working in branch banking operations with ICICI, we also had to sell financial products. However I am more of a safe FD investments kind of person over ULIPS, which we had to sell,” she smiles. “Although I would pitch ULIP I would be happy if someone bought an FD. However, as pressure started mounting I decided to give my ULIP pitches my best shot. When I managed to sell them to two unlikely candidates, I got a huge morale boost and it won me appreciation from my managers too,” she adds.
It’s the same kind of boost she had received for the first time during her days as a student at KIAMS. Ms. Hemalatha remembers this important phase fondly, as she says, “I come from a protected background and was only exposed to life in my home-town till then. When I came to KIAMS I had a chance to interact with a class full of students from diverse geographical backgrounds. I learned about cultural differences and ways to fit into the world outside. Thus my time at the institute was instrumental in shaping my social behaviour and attitude, which I value till date.”
While the learning at the institute gave her the cutting edge advantage, according to Ms. Hemalatha, she gets nostalgic about the overall experience at KIAMS. “The beauty of the campus, excellent food in the cafeteria, the calm and peaceful atmosphere, ice-breaking sessions with seniors – I miss it all. And above all, I miss our classes, which were made different by our faculty, who also came up with novel ways of giving us exams. These are memories I will cherish my entire life,” she says nostalgically.