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In Conversation with Manas Das: Senior Director of Operations, Intel India

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HR, IT, logistics, program management, people movement, site operations, and client computing. This is the extensive list of domains that Manas Das has worked across during his illustrious career spanning over 25 years. Currently, Manas is the senior director of Intel India’s Business Operations, where he designs and implements composite, cohesive business strategies and drives ‘ease of doing business.’ Over the years Manas spent at Intel, he played a major role in the significant growth of employee strength, making Intel India the largest R&D centre for Intel outside the US.

Read the story below to learn about Manas’ experience and see how he tries to grasp every opportunity.

Hello, Intel

 Manas first associated with Intel to design a framework for people coming to Intel India from around the globe, termed as ‘International Local Hires.’ His strong background in logistics and people movement led him to this responsibility. Back then, Intel India was driving a huge hiring campaign across all business units, and the framework created by Manas was key to a surge in the talent headcount. After creating the recruitment strategy and successfully deploying the same, Manas was asked to join Intel’s IT group and manage business operations.

Paving the Way for Change

 When he shifted to the site operations team as a program manager after a few years, he was nominated to  lead development for Intel India’s application for the prestigious Intel Quality Award. Even though it was not part of his role, Manas took up the responsibility seeing it as an opportunity to learn. “I remember the pride and excitement while presenting to Intel’s management committee, and I still get goosebumps thinking about it,” says Manas with an excited smile. That experience taught him an important lesson that guided him in the years to come – one should not get restricted by their role, always practice the ideology of ‘boundarylessness.’

In his current role as site operations leader, Manas ensures that the business enabling strategies are well planned so that business units can conduct their core activities efficiently. While delivering sustainable and scalable efficiency/compliance-linked operational solutions, he also drives Intel India’s strategy for business continuity. Manas drives the strategies and key conversations, and his team plays an important role in setting the operational foundation to position Intel India’s readiness for new responsibilities. They ensure that the site is operationally at par with those at Intel’s other geographical locations. The leadership provided by Manas and his team directly reflects a solid foundation for Intel India’s growth over the years, with the site now considered a microcosm of Intel.

The range of responsibilities handled by Manas gave him a broad understanding of the organization’s business requirements and helped change his outlook of the world. He adds, “The breadth of my roles kept shaking me out of siloed thinking. All the experience I gained, be it foundational, tactical, or strategic, have prepared me well for my current role.” What motivates Manas to do his work and stay committed to the organization are Intel’s seven values–Customer First, Fearless Innovation, Results Driven, One Intel, Inclusion, Quality, and Integrity. He also spends time learning new things, setting a direction for the same, finally executing them, and coaching his extended team. “The major problem I face doing all of this is—there are only 24 hours in a day,” laughs Manas.

Challenging the Pandemic and the Rise of a New Structure

The COVID-19 pandemic changed the dynamics of all companies in the ecosystem, and it was a turning point for Manas and his team. The organization responded to this phase by keeping employees at the fulcrum of all decisions. The health and wellness of the workforce became a priority, along with smooth business continuity and compliance with the government guidelines. This period also emphasized the need for higher empathy and understanding, especially for helping COVID-19 affected employees and their families. They also worked towards sourcing and distributing life-saving commodities across the country during a severe shortage. On the structural front, the assumption that people need to be co-located in a space to get work done was disrupted by the onset of the ‘hybrid’ working model. “We were faced with several unknown factors. To ease the operations, we ensured the successful execution of a multi-location work model and also provided remote support for our labs,” Manas recalls.

Career Advice

Manas strongly believes in following the five ‘C’s, namely Commitment, Curiosity, Compassion, Creativity, and Candour. He attributes the success of his career to combining these factors with Intel’s values. He also calls out the brilliant lesson of boundarylessness, urging people to see challenges as opportunities, stretch their boundaries, and keep learning.

Among the numerous milestones Manas and his team achieved, Intel India’s exponential rise over the years stands testament to their effective and invaluable business strategies.

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