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10 Questions with Tasneen Padiath – Managing Director, Southeast Asia

22 September, 2015

Donavan Thomas

Marketing / CEBer since 2012

Often, when you ask other CEBers why they love working at CEB, their answer is the same as mine–the people. This series will allow you to learn a little more about the people behind CEB.

Meet Tasneen Padiath, who oversees CEB’s commercial teams in Southeast Asia and also serves as the Singapore office lead. Tasneen originally offered her advice and perspective to the Women at CEB group, a global network of women and men who care about equality of opportunity and helping women to unlock their potential.


Q: What advice do you have for aspiring CEB leaders?

A: Change is the biggest constant, especially in a growth company like CEB. Be willing to adapt and embrace change because it only brings opportunities if approached in a positive way.

Q: What was your biggest professional setback and how did you overcome it?

A: Early in my career I joined P&G. It was my dream job as I always wanted to be in Marketing. However I really struggled in my first days there and it made me reflect on what I wanted in my career and from a company. I realized that I would be much more comfortable in a more entrepreneurial, less process-driven environment with a direct customer facing aspect. I eventually ended up joining one of P&G’s suppliers in a business development role.

Q: What is one piece of advice you would give your younger self?

A: Stop, listen, and think. Instead of being impatient to do the next thing, aggregate different viewpoints and think about how it informs your own.

Q: What CEB project makes you excited to get out of bed in the morning?

A: How to exponentially grow the CEB business in the region by bringing together the various offerings we have across our various teams.

Q: What is one destination everyone should add to his or her travel bucket list?

A: Coorg in southern India. Beautiful, relatively untouched hill station with sprawling coffee plantations and remnants of colonial architecture.

Q: What’s your favorite book and why?

A: The Freakonomics books. It’s fascinating to read how economic theory can be relevant to real life situations and how applying the right types of incentives can change behaviors.

Q:  What do you like doing in your free time?

A: Spending time with my family, travelling, and reading.

Q: Which female role model do you admire and why?

A: Indira Gandhi, she was the first woman Prime Minister of India. She ascended to that position in a very male dominated society and is today looked up to be one of the most successful prime ministers in Indian history. She was politically tough and not afraid to make difficult decisions. She commanded respect both on the national and international stage.

Q: What are some changes for women you hope to see in future generations?

A: Universal education for girls everywhere. More access to affordable child care and family leave so it’s not so hard to balance work and family.

Q:  What is your favorite “life hack” – in balancing your personal or professional life – which you would recommend to others? 

A: Set up a shared Google Calendar with your partner (and others involved in child care). For working parents who have to juggle work meetings, travel, and kids’ activities, it’s a life saver to know who is available to do what and when.

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