Bharti Gupta Ramola

I can’t believe how many years have gone by as a PwC alum after having been with the firm for over 32 years!

I joined the firm at the end of 1984 when the Management Consultancy Services (MCS) was just being set up. I still remember, we were half a dozen people who did all sorts of jobs with a very data-driven approach in a less than 500 sq ft office in Himalaya House in central Delhi.

MCS grew in India and globally for PwC. I made Partner in 1992 and focused on the Change Management and Foreign Direct Investment practices. Corporate Finance and Recovery was set up just after that and I moved to this new practice in 1996.

The early nineties were very exciting with liberalisation, stepped up GDP growth and investments across the board including in infrastructure. With support of our global network, we were well positioned to support the government in developing appropriate sectoral frameworks in Telecoms, Electricity, Highways, Ports, helping to solicit private investment in these sectors and where we did not work for the Government on projects, to support the private sector in bidding for such projects and in raising financing. Those were halcyon days, and we were proud to see our signature on the power purchase agreements and road concession agreements that became templates for all subsequent projects. Then came the Kyoto protocol. We led the creation of and trading in carbon credits, once again being in the happy position of being able to write the first carbon credit contracts from the perspective of a seller and to negotiate these with leading energy players around the globe.

I was asked to lead Deals in 2007 and came into my last role at the firm in 2011, to have the privilege to lead our brand and marketing efforts in India.

If you were to ask former colleagues to describe me, you are likely to get a mixed bag of a response. Here is a sample:

Bright                    Boring

Humane                Hard

Authentic               Austere

Radiant                  Realist

Take-Charge         Thoughtful

Innovative              Impatient

They would all be right!

I was asked to lead Deals in 2007 and came into my last role at the firm in 2011, to have the privilege to lead our brand and marketing efforts in India.

I was fortunate to have many mentors. Amal Ganguli, who was the first to help me understand how some people saw me. Ashwani Puri, who was an advocate and because of whom I was a senior partner before I realised what it is like to dwell on the glass ceiling. Don Almeida who taught me that if I really wanted to get something done, I must ask a specific person to do it and support her/him rather than try to lead critical strategy actions myself. They all helped me to make specific shifts that helped shape my career.

I also learnt from many colleagues around me. To mention only a few: Rigour from Ashwani Puri, humility from Sudhir Mathur, perseverance from Nitin Gupta, connecting from the heart from Deepak Kapoor. Andrew Porter, a Project Finance colleague from the UK floored me with the elegance of his solutions, reminding me that at the cutting edge of Finance, as at the cutting edge of science, we can and should work on solutions from basic principles.

sharmila karve4 bharti gupta ramola1

PwC is an amazing firm and while I can imagine a few organisations where my career might have gone further, I can’t imagine any that would have given me the opportunities to learn and work at the frontiers with every key shift in the macro environment that I got here.

The people, you all, and all those still with PwC, make this firm my extended family and for that no thanks are enough. Still, thank you for being there for me.

Follow PwC India