Debarshi Lahiri

Head of Sales and Marketing for Asia

Debarshi graduated with a Bachelor of Technology (Materials Science and Engineering) from the Indian Institute of Technology, and Master of Business Administration from the London Business School.

I usually get to bed by no later than 11pm, so that I get sufficient sleep before I am up by 5.30 am. I find that spending some time on physical fitness in the morning is the best way to start the day and keep myself energised. I spend about 45 minutes working out – alternating between strength training in the gym and cardio on the road. Lately, I tried to include a 15-minute meditation session to wrap up my morning fitness routine, but I am still a novice at this!
I get ready for work and drop my five-year old son off at the bus stop at 8am. Then I will either take a taxi or bus to work, and I use this time to “multi-task” between listening to music (Daft Punk, Iron Maiden, Metallica or Bollywood!) and catching up on emails that I can reply to or review quickly. I usually get to the office by 8:30am, chat with my colleagues and am ready for work by 9am.
This is, interestingly enough, a relatively quiet time of the day in the office. This is because most of our meetings with other countries in Asia or the rest of the world (Europe or the USA) happens in the late afternoon or evening. I spend the morning catching up on any outstanding topics, review SalesForce for upcoming opportunities, meet with colleagues as needed, and catch up on my to-do list (which I maintain on Outlook). My to-do list usually has a variety of topics such as following up on action items, reading reference material, upcoming travel agendas and plans for customer meetings. My direct reports are in Singapore and in Kuala Lumpur. I will typically have phone calls or conversations with them to catch up on the latest developments.
During lunch, I will grab a quick bite from the cafeteria downstairs if I am eating by myself; or I will head out across the street to the hawker centre if I have company.
The afternoon gets busier with meetings back-to-back. There are discussions with colleagues from across Asia and the rest of the world to align with and discuss specific projects, key initiatives, customer engagements, and a variety of other things that come within the ambit of sales and marketing.
I try and use this time to catch up on emails, and plan the next day and the rest of the week. I usually head out from the office around 7pm, but there are potentially calls or teleconferences later in the evening that I will take from home.
This is family time. We get dinner together, play with the kids, and put them to bed by 9pm. I love reading and usually have an unread book or two by my bedside, that I will read at night. If time and energy permits, my wife and I will turn on a movie on Netflix or Amazon Prime – but more often than not, we fall asleep halfway through! , Of course, everything above is based on a “normal” day in office, which is rare. I am usually travelling at least half the time each month. My realm of responsibility extends across all of Asia, so I try to meet customers and my sales colleagues in at least two different countries each month. The schedule gets significantly more schizophrenic, since I pack in as many things as possible.  A typical day starts with a breakfast meeting in the morning, customer meetings over the course of the day, team meetings and business reviews in the afternoon, and in all likelihood a team dinner that stretches late into the night. I will still try and stick to my morning fitness routine, but it all depends on when I can get to bed!