Datuk Raghu Bathamenadan: Effectively Leading People While Fostering A Positive Work Culture

Datuk Raghu Bathamenadan: Effectively Leading People While Fostering A Positive Work Culture

Raghu Bathamenadan , Vice President & Managing Director

Raghu Bathamenadan

Vice President & Managing Director

In today’s digital world, it is essential to be at the forefront of innovating new products to cater to the needs of customers. One company that is known for its game-changing innovations is Western Digital. From the invention of the first hard drive to recent advancements in 3D NAND, Western Digital’s heritage of innovation continues to inspire those who can think big and want to contribute to the betterment of society.

The Western Digital Tech and Regional Center (M) Sdn Bhd located at Petaling Jaya in Malaysia (also known as Center of Excellence) is currently led by Datuk Raghu Bathamenadan who is the Vice President & Managing Director. Datuk Raghu graduated with a Bachelor of Science (Physics) Hons degree from the University of Malaya in 1997 and completed his Master of Business Administration from Multimedia University in 2006. His hunger to acquire more knowledge led him to pursue a Doctorate in Business Administration at Multimedia University. Datuk Raghu’s professional journey started as a program manager at Western Digital and today, after acquiring over two decades of experience, he is a Managing Director and Vice President at the same company. CEO Insights Asia recently engaged in a one-on-one interaction with Datuk Raghu Bathamenadan, let’s hear from him.

Tell us about the important lessons you inculcated from the university and you carry in your professional journey? Which are the areas you find these experiences beneficial in your career?

There are several important lessons that I have learned from my university experience, and I  continue to apply them in my professional journey even today. Firstly, the importance of critical thinking and problem-solving skills, which helps me to analyse and tackle work challenges effectively. Secondly, the value of effective communication and teamwork that has enabled me to collaborate effectively with my team. Thirdly, continuous learning and staying up to date with the latest industry developments has helped me stay current and pursue new opportunities for growth and development.

Describe your leadership approach. What is your success mantra?

My leadership approach is centered around three main principles: Empathy, transparency, and accountability. I believe in leading by example and always consider the perspectives and needs of my team members. As for my success mantra, I believe in setting clear goals and working hard to achieve them. employees, and cultivating strong relationships with teams – This holistic approach is vital to nurturing a positive and productive work environment and has been key to my success.

Define Western Digital’s role in the computer hardware manufacturing industry.

Western Digital is a multi-national data storage company that creates breakthrough innovations and powerful data storage solutions that enable the world to actualize its aspirations. It is one of the leading providers of storage devices such as hard disk drives, solid-state drives, and memory cards. The company offers a wide range of storage solutions for various applications including personal computing, gaming, data centres, and cloud storage.

My objective is to foster a positive & productive work environment where every individual feels appreciated & supported

How do you encourage a learning culture among your team to draw vital insights from the market?

At Western Digital, we prioritise employees’ growth and development through dedicated upskilling programs. Our employees have access to various professional development opportunities and training resources to aid in their personal and career growth. We also encourage employees to pursue their individual learning goals and provide support along the way. To promote a supportive and collaborative learning environment, we are actively adopting a coaching and mentoring model approach.

What is the future destination you are heading towards?

The future destination I am heading towards is to continue making Western Digital a great place to work, where employees can both grow professionally and actively contribute to the company’s growth and success. My objective is to foster a positive and productive work environment where every individual feels appreciated and supported in their career advancement and personal growth, with a strong emphasis on incorporating 4IR (fourth industrial revolution) technology into our business.

Datuk Raghu Bathamenadan, Vice President & Managing Director, Western Digital

With over 25 years of working experience in the data storage industry, Raghu has held various leadership roles in Western Digital. Currently, he is the Vice President & Managing Director at Western Digital Tech and Regional Center (M) Sdn Bhd. He is responsible for establishing the new entity as a research and development center and its overall financial performance.

• Hobbies: Watching football and listening to music

• Favorite Cuisine: Indian food

• Favorite Books: Rules of Life by Richard Templar

• Favourite Travel Destination: India

•Awards & Recognition:

- President’s Award (2009), Western Digital CEO Award for Supply Chain Management

- Global Operations Award for Factory Consolidation and Transition, Central Planning & Inventory Management

- Appointment as CEO @ Faculty Program 1.0; Learn from The Pros by the Ministry of Higher Education, Malaysia – 1st Feb 2022

- Appointment as Elite @ UM Fellow at University Malaya – 1 Aug 2022

- Industry Advisory Panel for Taylor’s University, Malaysia

- Industry Learning Partner with Multimedia University, Malaysia

- Governing Committee for Electrical and Electronics Productivity under Malaysia Productivity Corporation

- Darjah Pangkuan Seri Melaka (D.P.S.M.) (Datuk) award, Aug 2022

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