From Researcher to Associate Vice President

Sushil Patil, AVP – APAC and Greater China

From Researcher to Associate Vice President

Sushil Patil, AVP – APAC and Greater China

Sushil Patil is a man of commitment.

“I got married at 21 and my wife had just turned 19. I dated her for 45 days and knew that she’s the one. It’s 12 years now and we’re happier than ever.”

To support his young family Sushil had to work while finishing his studies.

“It was the time when call centers in India were springing up like mushrooms, so I tried working at two different ones. In my first job, I had to convince customers mainly from the UK who wanted to cancel their contracts to stay with the company I was working for. The next job was about collecting data from US customers. I had to go through a 10 pages survey with each customer. It was crazy, but I was good at it (laughs).”

Despite his knack for communicating with people, working as a call agent was no cakewalk. In 2010, when night shifts and back to back calls per shift had started to wear Sushil out he received a call from a company he hadn’t heard of before, Circa Systems (later Boyd & Moore Intelligence Center, BMIC).

“They asked me if I’d be interested in working for an international recruiting company. It was a day shift and I needed a stable job since we had just gotten a baby. So, I agreed to meet with the owner, an Australian guy. When we met he talked about anything but the job (laughs). But since the salary and the conditions sounded okay, I decided to join. I had no idea what I was expected to do.

Following my motto ‘If you want something, go for it!’ I started to pick up new responsibilities quickly which always gets rewarded here at the BMIC.

Then, when I came into the office on my first day I saw headsets everywhere. I was told that I would be calling candidates in Japan. In the first weeks I learned basic Japanese and a little bit about Japanese culture in order to be able to speak with Japanese candidates. This was a new experience for me and I enjoyed it a lot.”

Not only the actual task came as a surprise for Sushil. Also, the image he had of the company changed drastically after his first days.

“I thought that the company was similar to Indian recruiting firms who would place you anywhere for a month of your salary. Over time I figured that the BMIC worked very differently. I got to talk to Consultants in Japan who explained the process to me which seemed rather sophisticated. I worked on mid- to senior level management roles across industries and got exposure to a wide range of industries and professions. This broadened my understanding of not only the industry but also business in general.

I also got to work with many different people from different backgrounds. Shortly after I joined, Jonas (VP APAC) came to India as the representative of Boyd & Moore Executive Search who had become our exclusive customer. Jonas is German. The way he approached things felt very different. I could see him make many changes and improvements to our processes and the company as a whole. We all learned a ton during that time.”

Shortly after he had joined, Sushil started to explore new grounds for himself and the Intelligence Center.

“Following my motto ‘If you want something, go for it!’ I started to pick up new responsibilities quickly which always gets rewarded at Boyd & Moore.

My first big achievement that was outside of the usual scope of us researchers in India was a Country Manager placement in Korea. It was a new market for the company and we didn’t have anybody on the ground. Jon (General Manager and Co-Founder, Boyd & Moore Executive Search) asked me to help him with mapping the market and qualifying candidates while he was communicating with the client. It was quite tough since I understood neither the Korean language nor the culture. However, eventually I was able to map the market our client was targeting and screened candidates. We closed the role in 45 days. It was an exciting experience and Jon treated me to a nice thank-you-lunch afterwards (laughs).

I think that’s what I love most about working at BMES. There’s always somebody who listens, somebody who truly cares. This makes me feel safe to try new things even if I might not succeed at first.

This placement made the management in Japan realize that we in India could do much more than just identifying candidates in Japan. So, we got more and more involved in searches across Asia. I for example worked on the first 3 placements in Greater China before we had anybody on the ground. To be honest, it was a very busy time. At one point I was wearing 2 hats: On the one hand, I worked on my own searches mainly focusing on South East Asia. On the other hand, I managed a team of researchers helping the Industrial, Automotive team in Japan establish their business.

A little later, I got chosen to support our newly established entity in Singapore. At the beginning, there was only one Consultant on the ground. He had to do a lot of business development to get the business up and running. I supported him with candidate management so he could focus on business development. As the team in Singapore was growing I had to add people as well until I was heading a team of 8 dedicated researchers.”

Although his growing responsibilities meant working long hours from time to time, Sushil didn’t think of slowing down. He had his eyes firmly fixed on one goal.

“I knew that some of the senior researchers had been transferred to Japan. This was a huge motivator for me. But I didn’t want to go to Japan, I was aiming for Singapore. It was a new office and I felt that this would be a fantastic opportunity for me.

Of course, I had to proof first that I was ready for that challenge. At the end it’s all about performance and numbers, right? (laughs)

But I never felt overwhelmed. I received great mentoring and support from my co-workers and the senior management. And finally, I placed several candidates across the region and was ready to move to Singapore.”

2013 marks the beginning of a new chapter in Sushil’s career. A chapter that introduced a new element to Sushil who had become quite accustomed to success.

“It was certainly not easy when we started out here. It was only me and one other Consultant. We had to do a lot of business development and create awareness. Most people had never heard of Boyd & Moore and confused us with other companies (laughs).

Singapore is a tough market. It’s extremely competitive. For the first time I started to doubt myself. There was this one particularly difficult search. I had 2 senior candidates on offer and both rejected. The client was furious and kept pushing me to provide new candidates. I remember that it was a Sunday when I called Jonas who had taken over the Singapore office. I told him that my candidates weren’t signing and that I felt that I didn’t have the DNA of a Consultant. Jonas just laughed and said ‘Sushil, I am so glad that you’re going through this. You’ve been spoiled by success and that worried me. You can only grow by making mistakes and by facing obstacles. So, take this as an opportunity to grow. Trust me, you’ll become a star recruiter.’

I think that’s what I love most about working at BMES. There’s always somebody who listens, somebody who truly cares. This makes me feel safe to try new things even if I might not succeed at first.

Sure, it’s not easy. We hustle, we make it work. The Management acknowledges that and encourages us to keep pushing for the things we want. Thanks to these great role models and mentors I was able to make it from a Researcher in India to Associate Vice President in Singapore. They’re more than colleagues or bosses, they’re friends, they’re family.”

The Singapore office is looking for talented and ambitious people who are enjoy working with international clients and candidates. If that sounds like you, check out our open positions!

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