Head – Delivery, Hyderabad Delivery Centre
Darshana Pai is a member of:
I have been in the IT industry for the last 20 years. I completed my
Masters in Technology from IIT Mumbai and thereafter joined Patni
Computers as a developer. I have worked with top IT companies so far-
Wipro, Capgemini, Satyam, and now, Virtusa. Currently, I head Delivery
for the Hyderabad Centre. Over the years, I have delivered multi-million
IT solutions to customers in Retail, Finance, Energy Utilities and
Prior to joining Virtusa, I was with Wipro
where I headed the delivery function for transportation logistics and
government vertical and was responsible for the profitability, delivery
excellence and employee engagement. At Capgemini, I headed the delivery
function for UK region,across all industry verticals. I have also been a
visiting faculty at CapGemini University at Les Fontains, France.
Role I Play in My Company
Virtusa is a global IT services company that offers a broad range
of information technology services, including IT consulting, technology
implementation, and application outsourcing services. The company
provides IT services to Global 2000 companies and leading software
vendors in Communications & Technology, Banking & Financial
Services, Insurance, Telecommunications, and Media, Information &
In my current role at Virtusa, I head the
Delivery operations at the company’s Hyderabad Development Center. My
responsibility primarily focuses on customer satisfaction, delivery
excellence and employee engagement.
I am also spearheading the Gender
Diversity Initiative at Virtusa providing mentorship and career
guidance to fellow women associates.
Making the Right Career Move During the Journey
One of my most important career decisions was to join Capgemini
Consulting in Mumbai as delivery head for UK after having spent 8 long
years in Patni Computers. This transition has been very critical in my
career since this was my first step towardstaking a leadership role
My Personal Leadership Vision
Consistently deliver high quality experience to our customers
through innovative delivery models. Create a learning culture and an
ecosystem to provide career growth path for my team. Maintain high
excitement all the time in my delivery center and last but not the
least, to sustain business growth focus to be able to contribute to my
organization’s growth vision.
Ways to Maintain a Healthy Work-life Balance
One must have very high energy levels. It is not as much about time
management but about energy management. There are some things that I
follow - physical exercise is a very high priority for me. I never
compromise on that even if I am travelling. Further, I am very
particular about my diet in order to maintain high energy levels all the
The second thing is to ask for help – having a strong support system. I
go to my friends or family for help with tasks when I am not able to
manage. Asking for help is usually not something that comes naturally to
The Challenges Faced Being a Woman
If I look back, I feel proud of what I have achieved. Being in the Armed
forces, my husband would be posted to a new location every 5 years. So
we had to start all over, every time we moved to a new city. Initially I
thought it was a big constraint for building a strong career. But with
strong determination, positive outlook and persistence I looked at this
constraint as an opportunity to grow faster. I was constantly on my toes
to acquire new skills and also adapting to new environments quickly.
have you been able to grow in this male-dominated industry? What are
the challenges you have faced? Is there some specific example that you
would like to share?
Being in the IT industry, and in big cities
where I worked, I can say that being a woman was never a constraint for
me. I have never felt that during any time in my career.
Ways of Doing Things Differently if Given a Chance to Start from Scratch
I don’t think I would have done anything differently. Maybe, if I had
looked for a mentor earlier on in my career, I would have grown much
faster. But overall, I feel that I have made all the right choices.
“Women leaders are a driving force for powering business” Explain
Women bring a unique perspective and leadership style to their work. I
think they strike the right balance between people management and
business management. I also feel that we are very outcome oriented.
Learning Process During my Career Days and Achievement Gained.
I learnt very early in my career that positive outlook,
persistence and passion for growth is what it takes to be the best in
what you do. That has been my philosophy in my professional journey for
the last two decades.
Couple of Years from Now
I have been performing the Delivery Head role for the last 8 years.
There havebeen diverse learning opportunitiesacross the various
organizations I have worked at. While at Capgemini, I experienced the UK
culture and was able to build strong relationships.During my stint at
Wipro, I learnt a lot about the Government Sector in Asia-Pacific (APAC)
region and the Transportation & Logistics Industry.
heading the Hyderabad Center of Virtusa has been an exciting journey. I
would like to excel in this role and also gain some specialization while
doing this role.
Career Accomplishment that I am proud of
On the professional front, I cherish every small achievement and every step that I have climbed in my career ladder.
biggest accomplishment was when we went ‘live’ for a large business
transformation program for a Japanese client. It was a multi-year and
multimillion dollar program and was rigorous due to the kind of
requirements the client had. This completely changed the way of doing
business for my customer. My team and I stayed motivated throughout this
tough project. This was career defining moment for all of us.
the personalfront, my son got the best all-rounder award in the 1st
standard. That was the first time he demonstrated his abilities before
Ihad gauged his potential.
Women leaders give up very early in their career. This could be
due to work-life balance or personal responsibilities. They should work
through these challenges and ask for help when they need it. My favorite
piece of advice to allthe women professionals out there is that – don’t
fall in love with the problems you like. Build on your strengths,
nurture your passion and last but not the least take control of your
health, start young and make it a lifelong pattern.