Wise words & tea with Aditi Khandekar Sr. Asst. General Manager & C.S. Air India!
Sneak peek into our interview/chat/ informal conversation/ a lot of fun! 🙂
Often, we assume that government employees are a bit laid back but it’s the complete opposite with her. And, this is what amazed me! I am fortunate for the opportunity to have a conversation with Aditi Khandekar, she is a Sr. Assistant General Manager, Department Corporate Affairs of Air India plus Co-Company Sectary (CS) of Air India Charters Ltd. (Phew!) I got to know Aditi as we went on a road trip via carpooling to Pune for a meditation camp. From being a complete stranger to an acquaintance and now a friend, I am glad I came across such an inspiring woman who is so passionate and driven.
I still remember my road trip with her where she was explaining me about all the projects she is undertaking personally and professionally. As a very enthusiastic volunteer, Aditi undertakes several service projects on her own. Also, I would like to reveal here that she is 51 now and looks not a day more than 30, maybe even less! The lady has an impressive personal and professional profile and surely is an inspirational persona. Let us learn a thing or two by taking cues of her work mantra and ethics in life.
Honest Confession: Wanted to share with you all that this article should have been live by March! I lost the footage, also the audio and messed up badly but finally found it back (Thank God)! Yes, I delayed the hell out of it but finally its up! Hope you like it! 🙂
Let us know Aditi’s story and cease some inspiration!
Role in Air India:
Sr. Assistant General Manager, Department Corporate Affairs of Air India and Co-Company Sectary (CS) of Air India Charters Ltd. AICL is a Low-Cost International Airline named Air India Express with a turnover of 3500 crores P.A.
Projects and Initiatives
- Part of the Core Team – 2001 Plan to disinvest (Sell) Air India
- Starting a new airline, core group (in 2005 it started operations properly) i.e. The entire set up of up of the new airlines- Air India Express
- Air India Charters
- CSR – Sponsored 15 students for TISS
- Geriatric Care (CSR)
- Several other initiatives including sponsoring a van for Palilalic Care in Cochin and adopting 2 schools in there (CSR).
- Green Volunteer in Air India
- As Green Initiatives – Vermi-Compost Unit
How are you so passionate about your work? How do you manage to be consistent?
Aditi Answers: Once you get into any new thing, it takes some time to learn, after a few years you mature, you know your job properly and you develop a knack for it. I like my job and I know what is expected of my job so I plan and execute.
I don’t get bored because I get to do so many new things. Every time you can’t get excited, finally, it’s a job, you have to do what is expected out of you. Keep yourself motivated by pursuing your hobbies and all. Take life as it comes. Do your hobbies during the weekends and it works out.
Pro tip for all the people in leadership positions:
Aditi Answers: Motivate and delegate. I usually delegate everything and I am free. I just check if my team has some issues and help them. Everyone is not good in everything, you have to note the skill and delegate accordingly.
How do you balance your personal and professional life?
Aditi Answers: I am lucky that way. My husband gives full support. We need to have some clarity about what we want to do and move ahead. Again, it’s about management. It is a skill. I meet youngsters with similar issues, I tell them to get clarity first of what they want to do or what they want to achieve and plan accordingly. For married individuals, they should discuss their goals with their partner. Also get domestic help. In India, help is available, you cannot do everything to your best alone, if house help is needed you must take it. And for family, you need to convince them. Understanding with your family and your spouse helps bigtime.
How do you manage to look so flawless and maintain fitness even at this age?
Aditi Answers: “There is no secret. A Little bit of exercise routine is needed. I do my pranayama. In the routine, I do some exercises. I am not rigid but I do it.” She narrated an example of her mother-in-law, she said, till the age of 87, her mother in law used to go swimming every day! Now she is 90. Aditi adds, “She is my inspiration. I tried to take out extra time for exercise after work, I joined the gym but that did not work out due to my work hours and all. I do morning Pranayamas including Sudarshan Kriya which takes around 45 minutes that work wonders. Also, I take an early train so I get a bit more time before work hour starts, I walk from CST to Nariman Point (brisk walk) – it takes 30 mins to reach the office (walking), then if I sit for 8-9 hours it doesn’t matter. Also, along with this during lunch time which is around 45 minutes, I do yoga first for some time and then eat. I also make sure to have chaas (buttermilk) which has great health benefits. That’s about it (smiles)!
Most Memorable Travel Experience
- Three times official trip to the USA
- Once for buying new planes
- Signatory for all the legal/ major agreements
50 planes for Air India, 18 planes for Air India Express!
Aditi Answers: Most exciting experience was when I went to take a delivery of an aircraft, it was a memorable experience. We completed all the documentations. It was seriously a great experience! Like when you go to buy a car or something, how do you check everything, so like that for the aircraft, we have an engineering team, there are many instructions, it will be in Hindi also for Indians, we had Test Flights and other things. For the first time, we even ferried the flight! We were only 12 people including the crew. That was a lifetime experience to bring an airplane home!
Personally, also we love to travel. It broadens our horizon, one should never miss an opportunity to travel. I and my husband have traveled to several places, explored various countries. We even go on solo trips too and that’s how we learn so much.
How important is to take out time for self-growth, for your own self?
Aditi Answers: It’s very important. It’s very very important. If you are passionate about something you need to take out time to do it, no matter what.
So, this was the article for this week! I hope you enjoyed knowing Aditi, yes, she is such an inspiration! Also, her smile is contagious! Do let me know how did you like the article… Can’t wait to connect with you!
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