Tata Sky tells its employees to ‘Be your own CEO’

The Company’s best performers are facilitated to come up with new ideas and collaborate.


Companies love appreciating and encouraging their best performers. And why not? After all, it is these people who become the building blocks of an organisation. It is because of the tireless efforts of its people that the business produces good results. Therefore, it is the responsibility of the organisation to appreciate and encourage the good performance of their employees.

Everybody talks about incentives, increments and gift vouchers in the name of rewards and recognition to felicitate the good work of employees. But here is a company that truly recognises the work of its employees and makes them feel special.

Tata Sky’s ‘Be your own CEO’ initiative is one of the most innovative, interesting and unique ways in which the company celebrates the efforts of its star performers, who showcase exemplary talent at the workplace.

Sangram Chavan

“This initiative has helped our CEO get ideas from all parts of the country”

The initiative comes straight from the innovative lab of Harit Nagpal, CEO, Tata Sky. An initiative started six to seven years back, it recognises those employees from the bottom of the pyramid to the mid-level management who exhibit the traits of a CEO.

According to Sangram Chavan, CHRO, Tata Sky, When initially introduced the initiative then called, C.E.O. – Collaboration, Experimentation and Ownership (C.E.O) was announced because Nagpal realised that employees should take the ownership and accountability of their work. However, this has gone through few changes over the years and is now called CEOs – Collaboration, Experimentation, Ownership with Speed. This whole programme is end to end within the organisation with five senior leadership jury from the organisation.

So, what are those CEO-like traits on the basis of which employees are recognised? Working with colleagues and seeking buy-in support within and beyond the team to achieve objectives; helping colleagues to overcome challenges; understanding redundancies in the business; bringing innovative ideas to fruition; and breaking traditions to get effective results, are some of the traits on which employees are evaluated.

“We try to recognise people who directly benefit the business. Though people are recognised from all functions but most of them are from the sales department and 97 per cent of them are above-average performers. There would have been a lot of difference of what we do as a brand as a service we offer to customers because of their insights over the year has gone to shape up a lot of process that would have been incorporated of streamline which are customer facing or internal initiative processes that really helps the company learn regularly every quarter,” says Chavan.

The whole process starts with selecting the ‘SPOTS of the month’ in the company. SPOTS are those employees who show tremendous performance and go out of their line of duty to achieve their target. All the colleagues nominate the names of the employees who they feel are eligible to become the SPOTS, on an online portal.

After that, the jury of function heads evaluates all the nominees and chooses a SPOT of the month. This chosen person receives reward points which can be redeemed for exciting gifts.

Then, a jury of five senior-level executives from different functions who report to the C-Suite members, evaluate all the SPOTs of the month and select the ‘CEOs of the quarter’. These employees are then invited to a CEO Forum, where Harit Nagpal the CEO of the company meets all the winners and listens to all the innovative ideas presented by them.

Earlier, the CEO Forum used to take place in Mumbai where the company’s head office is based. But now the location of the event has shifted to Delhi. All the winners from across the company meet at one place.

The event takes place every quarter and the HR facilitates direct contact between the winners and the CEO.

“No member from the C-Suite is present at the event, which gives some free space with no hindrance from anyone,” says Chavan.

This kind of an initiative helps the Company imbibe qualities, such as collaboration, ownership, accountability and speed in their employees.

This initiative has done two things – One is Collaboration, Experimentation, Ownership and speed across the organisation and re-enforce it in every quarter to employee’s and Secondly to get direct insights from across the entire geography of countries and all functions, largely from the front line sales and service employees.

“This initiative has helped our CEO get ideas from all parts of the country,” shares Chavan.

Giving such space and opportunities to employees will certainly help companies bring out the best in their employees and engage them to perform better. This also gives rise to innovative ideas and enhances loyalty in the workforce.

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