Sarika Ravlekar Lone
Sarika Ravlekar Lone is a member of:
Sarika Ravlekar Lone's Experience
Head/ VP/ GM-BD
DesignLIFE, Mumbai, INDIA
Project Mgr-IT/ Software
Spigit Inc., Pleasanton, US
Learn from experiences, take risks, take constant feedback. Other’s view point always help to
understand if your message is well communicated or not. Try implementing something new
which is unconventional and see the response. That provides unique way to your team members
to find out where they want to put more efforts and are they doing something worth, develop
them and develop yourself in the process. Leader has to build the team, everyone can do it if
they are well equipped and told how to do it...it is the right thought process that leader have
to cultivate in the team that brings him new opportunities to build something meaningful,
valuable. Be Consistent in whatever do, never stop on celebrations of small achievement...move
on to the next big thing in life...keep moving...
Current Job description
Currently, I am Managing Partner and investor in Industrial Design Studio, DesignLIFE.
I started understanding Industrial Design and work of DesignLIFE since when I started
interacting with my would be in Oct 2011. I got involved initially into finances to foresee overall
health of the company and then slowly into details of projects, clients.
DesignLIFE is an Industrial Design company started in Mar 2010 with the aim of partnering
with the enthusiastic and curious minds with ideas and help them recognize and shape their
dreams. Currently DesignLIFE working on myriad of Designs from futuristic Unmanned Aerial
Vehicles UAV’s, Gigantic Cheese Packaging machines, Future ready Network Security Devices
to a humble Screwdriver. When I joined the team it was critical to properly manage complex
design projects and finances to help company to balance the cashflow and build its vision for the
next 3 years.
After a year of closely working with my husband now, I handle client interactions, initial briefs,
project proposals, client schedules, generate new business inquiries and follow up on getting
the done deals. Apart from this, we are always in search of elusive talent in Design and giving
advice with strong opinion to the team from a point of view being neutral or an non-Designer.
I had to take hard decisions in workplace when it’s time to be fair to the situation and think
about future to tell that someone that boss you are wrong. It depends on situation where you
might have to be agressive, stubborn at times to let it go or stick to your decision. Grievances
result from many factors and root of all is not able to speak clearly what you want and what the
person wants from whom you want. It is always a good practice to explain your thinking behind
your action and listen to what an employee want to say. Words, written or spoken matters a lot,
so anything you do, leader has to take care of employee to give them confidence in whichever
situation they are in. It’s your call to make or break that employee after fact findings and you
always have to make that person, not break them.
Managing personal and professional life
A leader leads by example, not by force. If you don't have a righteous objective,eventually
you will suffer. When you do the right thing for the right reason,the right result awaits. Be it
personal or professional life, always be true to yourself and believe in what you want to do and
achieve it despite of difficulties thrown in your way. Emotional drive is necessary although don’t
get immersed into it, let it be a soothing part of your actions; at the end you have to do the right
thing in that situation. As a leader, you should connect the dots so that everyone gets onto that
connected path with the sense of fulfillment and satisfaction of their individual achievements.
Any human being can add value to you, so have a learning mindset to learn from any layman
without having an Ego, if a person sees that then they open up to you.
Important career decisions
Jumping ! I have pushed myself into doing things which at my experience and capability, was
a big bite to munch on. After my bachelors in computer engineering, being a top rank holder
thorughout school & college days and technically sound, I was still struggling to find a job due
to poor english vocabulary. I failed many english aptitude tests and I was not able to make it to
Technical round to get selected. It took me a good amount of time to land up on the first job.
I had decided to go for masters outside India and explore the world on my own, that thought
didn’t allow me to slow down anywhere after first job and I started preparing in that direction in
terms of finances. Thereafter, I had severe health problems as much that parents had given up
on me being able to do any kind of strenous-stressful work ahead and it was dramatic time for
me to come out of all that to focus on what I wanted to do in my career. While I was working for
almost 3 years in IT companies in Mumbai, I continued to study for pursuing masters in US and
I was able to crack GRE to overcome that mournful thought of not getting job because of good
english vocabulary. I feel that was the turning point for me to understand my capabilities and
start living myself in reality. I am glad that I stayed determined to do everything that I wanted in
my ways after getting into Masters course.
I worked my way up at start up company with highly volatile, stressful, aggresive work
environment and did the right thing to work and develop myself as a leader. Those are the days
when you really feel ...been there...done that...what’s more ahead...bring it on !
All the jobs that I have taken up are deliberately into different domains, completely different
than what I have done earlier and I think that’s they way to try out yourself to see what all you
can do !
and now I have been working for more than a year for our own startup setup DesignLIFE in a
non IT field of Industrial Product Design and thinking the Design thinking...to design our life
Leaders find themselves into lot of difficult situations in their journey under various
circumstances. A Leader should be one who can shadow their actual feelings towards what is
happening around still should be able to give right way to the feelings of others. If it requires to
take a step back for someone to get ahead by encouraging them to build their future.
They are not always welcomed especially when they come from a different background into a
totally new field. It is challenging to be a part of the team which is new, moving at different pace
and divert its attention to something different. Good managers are often unpopular as people
tend to tag them with their individual experiences. Be a good listener and strike a good balance
in your personal achievements and your team’s performance. Treat well emotional intelligence
of your team.
Understand people around, what are their immediate needs, what do they want to do in future
and act accordingly to keep them happy. Many times we don’t speak clearly and openly from
management side what we want our team to achieve and guide them properly. Everyone needs
a direction to move on in their journey. A leader has to take all the passengers on this journey in
one direction with focus on ultimate goal and make them feel that their time & efforts are worth
contributing, satisfying their intellectual and personal goals.
Identifying good skills of every team member and unknowingly heading them to build up on
those skills to fully utilise their potential to get the work done is a special skill every Leader
should develop. Leader is also learning in this process so his words, actions, behavior speaks
what is happening around and is a crucial part of influencing everyone. So, concentrate on your
actions and words, people will trust you to be with you in your good time or bad time.
“When one treats people with benevolence, justice, and righteousness and reposes confidence in
them, the army will be united in mind and all will be happy to serve their leaders.”
More about me
A bit rebellious in the sense that I will always ask ‘why’...I like to do things when anyone says
you won’t be able to do it and I find my pleasure in ‘making it happen’...although fun to be with if
you want to be yourself when you are around me...I do not hesitate to talk when it’s the time to
talk the talk...not afraid of ‘anything’ in LIFE...:)
There are many interesting personalities around who has influenced me since childhood.
My father, mother and maternal GrandFather are the inspirations for all my thoughts and
actions so far...and not to forget our neighbor Deshpande family had influenced a lot on us...
Books ! Being an avid reader in school days, I have grown up following Vinayak Damodar
Savarkar, Bhagat Singh, Ratan Tata, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Narayan-Sudha Murthy, Bruce Lee,
Stefi Graf. If you are keen on observing people around and do not bother much about status quo,
traditions then world is full of inspirations...just keep your eyes open to see good things and ears
open to hear good things...
On my parental side, I have my father, born and brought up in a suburb like Thane. He has
worked his way up doing all kind of jobs in his childhood to support the family post death of
his father when he was 4 yrs young. He is currently working as a plant operator in a chemical
company in Thane for well over 35 years now and still enjoys the work. My mother is a
housewife, shifted from a small village in Satara called as Pali to Thane after marriage. My
younger brother, is a computer engineer and working in an MNC in pune.
My husband is an Industrial Designer and Professional Photographer. He has completed his
Mechanical Engineering from Mumbai and Master of Design in Industrial Design from IIT
Kanpur. He founded DesignLIFE in Mar 2010 after working in various design studios in India to
spread out awareness about Industrial Designing in India and with aim to make world a happier
place with help of Design. He is also a well known Photojournalist style Wedding photographer
with his one more venture, GirishLone Photography.
My Father in Law is retired school teacher who also has worked at various jobs to earn the
living. My Mother in Law is a homely housewife who enjoys cooking and envisions setting up
papad making business sometime.
That’s about my lovely family members and great thing about each one of them is everyone
“wants to do something in their life”.
My views on India Technical development
India has lot of talent, although as it happens in every other field in India, our upbringing
tends to teach everyone to do something to “Earn Money” and follow a routine path of growing
in your life. We hardly ever imagine is this the thing I want to before accepting any job. On
technical side more or less, we are producing engineers and we are missing on a thought process
to actually gain knowledge and understand in depth what we are learning to make use of it for
building something better.
To build a tech product, one should be keen on thinking over how can you build something that
will be useful and will be used by everyone. To do that, we have to come out of our mindset
of “serving others” and “start creating” for ourselves. If you put yourself into a situation
and try to solve that problem, you will have a better solution which can be easily adopted by
people around you. We have lot of opportunities to create good products and we still have to
strengthen our competitiveness in terms of learning new technologies to be ahead of the game.
There is just a need to “start”...