Energetic go-getter in love with city | india | Hindustan Times
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Energetic go-getter in love with city

His academic and professional journey is a perfect example for career-savvy youths. After passing XII (1980) in PBMB he appeared for MBBS and Engineering and qualified both. He pursued the latter and picked up the MBA degree! And, thus began his journey.

india Updated: Mar 17, 2006 00:04 IST

His academic and professional journey is a perfect example for career-savvy youths. After passing XII (1980) in PBMB he appeared for MBBS and Engineering and qualified both. He pursued the latter and picked up the MBA degree! And, thus began his journey.

Today, Chief Operating Officer (Mobility) UP East Bharti Tele-Ventures Ltd, Shankar Prasad feels there's a lot left to achieve.

“As a teenager it was a tough decision for me. I was showered with advice. Most wanted me to become a doctor but blood scares me. So, I had no choice but to take up engineering. But, I have no regrets,” says Prasad. Following that, he took up a job in factory for a year but it was again not his destination. He, then, did MBA from XLRI-Jamshedpur and thus, in 1988 he begun his real career at a top toy company in Rajasthan. He shifted back to his hometown Banglore, joined a different company and in July, 1990 got married to Sunitha.

“After marriage what is needed most is moolah! So I moved to Muscat in 1990 and sold Toyota cars while my better half also worked. I came back in 1996 and joined Motorola in Bangalore,” he says. More job switches followed and finally, he joined Airtel and then, after a promotion, became the COO posted in Lucknow in Feb, 2004.

“Coming to this city was just a career assignment for me but it was a blessing in disguise. After getting my plum job what is got in bonus was time from my family. Everything is just a 10-minute drive here and the city has grown like anything in the last two years. Barring few things I rate Lucknow at par with Banglore,” says Prasad. One thing he misses is his relatives but “you know sometimes it is a boon. Hope they don’t read this!” he grins.

“One thing I was learnt here is Hindi. This credit I will always give to this city, which probably has the best Hindi speaking people,” he says.

Do career-oriented people fall in love? Shankar has a beaming smile on his face. He sits back and goes down memory lane. “I had few crushes but like fate will have it they did not know about it.” Is that all? “No, during my job in Jaipur I used to travel in bus and there was this girl who used to travel along with me.

As I she was also from Karnataka we started talking and the routing continued.

Then when I bought a bike I offered her a coffee and she agreed. And, lo… she handed me a packet and when I opened it … it had … a rakhi,” he says and bursts into laughter.

Is this why Shankar does not believe in love marriages? “No, my funda is, in arranged marriages you don’t have expectations while in love you know just a part of person before tying the knot and later come to know the ‘real’ person which creates problem.”

Shifting focus to family life he recalls: “The first breakfast my wife made was ‘poha’ and like a good husband when she looked up to me for my comment, I praised it like anything. But, for the next three weeks I got the same breakfast.

Now when we sit back, we laugh remembering those days.”

Reading books is the best time-pass for him and John Grisham and Ludlum are his favourites. One thing he does every Monday is read film reviews at www.boxofficeguru.com and then, make a list of movies to watch DVDs of. He loves watching cricket on TV and once in a while, tries his hand at table tennis.

His love for small thing makes him formulate strategies in his work too. “Associating with the Lucknow Race Course for winter races, organising bey-blade competitions, donating computers under the Bharti Foundation and several other programmes brings us close to our customers which is the motto of our organization,” he says. Actually, “my son Siddhartha, a Class IV student at Study Hall, is fond of bey-blades and thus I got the idea of organizing a competition and it was real fun.”

So what is next? He is ready with his baggage to go where his career drives him. But Shankar has certainly fallen in love with Lucknow.