Karthik Mulakaluri: Building Learning Curve and Leadership Team to the “New You” Organization

Karthik Mulakaluri
Karthik Mulakaluri, Director

In the concurrent streams of turbulent times, every ship’s course, direction, journey, and destination depends upon the might of the ship’s captain. The way of life is akin to the way of water – ever-flowing irrespective of the situations around.

On the professional waters of entrepreneurship, the company’s director is the chieftain in leadership, on whose shoulders rests the responsibility to keep the company afloat by navigating the way through whatever adverse circumstances may arise.

Crisis or no crisis, up and downs, favourable conditions or unfavourable ones, only those directors possessing some exceptional qualities emerge victorious in the long run. The post global pandemic situation has proven – Omega Healthcare Director like Karthik Mulakaluri to ignite the possibilities in navigating the organization to the shore of success amidst of workforce complexities and organizational changes happening all around.

According to Karthik, these qualities/traits are the most valuable assets a director must possess. He believes that each director in their given organization operates in an extremely unpredictable, anxious, and inquisitive atmosphere, with stakes being very high. Working in the midst of power and politics in organizational life will be a constant battle between mind and heart during decision-making.

RUNning to Win

The journey would not be as easy as expected or predicated, or perceived. “Out of many qualities, I firmly wish to call out three traits that make essence in executing one’s duties at the workplace seamless.” One – Listening and Powerful Questioning. Two – Do not be afraid to dream big. Reflecting gives ideas and opportunities to RUN (Reskill, Upskill, and New-skill), and Three – Going out of Control with Control.

“Let us not ignore “all great changes are born from chaos.” Trying to force fit ourselves at all costs is pointless. Using our inner wisdom and intuition is important. Since we cannot control everything that happens in our professional lives, we can control how our thoughts and thinking operate. Therefore, trusting our intuition play a significant role in our life. It will always lead us to where we need to go and what we should do at any moment in time.” Better to step aside from being emotionally drained and be unique in an unprecedented herd mentality.

Regaling his saga of leadership has made Omega Healthcare excel in its niche, Karthik reveals that as a professional and especially as a Head of Talent Development, “how do I motivate myself!” while performing an essential role within the organization with optimal level; the answer: “By changing my circumstances.” It is a fundamental principle of behavioural science. “I need to modify my behaviour by modifying the situation in which it occurs.”

The Saga of an Open Mind and a Willing Heart 

He states that one’s attitude towards circumstances matters a lot. An open mind and a willing heart are all needed to receive every answer they have been looking for. Moreover, if they want to find the truth, look beyond the words, and look for a feeling. They need to find the truth and look for simplicity.

Trusting one’s inner wisdom and intuition play a critical role in reimaging, reskilling, and reinventing organizational excellence. Making a conscious effort to know “what of what I want to manifest, but not on how” will consistently help in understanding the organization’s vision, purpose, and intention at the macro and micro scale.

Persistently setting up inspirational goals to lead the change in the vigorous business landscape at strategic, people, and operational stages allows them to consistently drive the desired results or success.

Investing time to observe and getting familiar with the organizational ecosystem will create a scope for wise work with leaders and employees’ involvement for the welfare of developing talent across the spectrum in several unique ways for today and tomorrow.

Here, effective leadership skills, values, and qualities he thinks are important for a company the most. Company culture has become a top priority for leaders across all industries. In fact, talent development has become a top priority for HR. Culture is more important than an organization’s business strategy or operation model. The rise of remote and hybrid work has had a top priority for leaders to drive change management and organization effectiveness meritoriously.

The Prominent Leadership Mindset

Most of the leaders agree that a strong culture is key to company success; however, many have different ideas about what culture really is. This lack of clarity makes it difficult to make changes that move the needle. HR, and especially the Talent Development team, has to take a good look at the role culture plays in engaging, empowering, and retaining talent. Need to focus on aspects of learning and sensitizing cultural diversity (generational and behavioural styles and values) that drive employee and business success.

In Karthik’s view, three prominent leadership mindset shift is required, and companies must invest in the workplace:

*Human-Centric Leaders: As today’s work environment changes, leadership must change as well. The work-life fusion and flexible work arrangements are redefining the leader-employee dynamic into a human-to-human relationship. Demonstrating human-to-human dynamics in the workplace pushes leaders to display human-centric leadership, defined as leading with authenticity, empathy, and adaptivity. Measured as nice to have and today’s employees demand them.

*Organizational Change Strategy: Change fatigue and work friction are driving attrition, and CHROs are prioritizing companies to design and change management to navigate continuous disruption. Today’s employees are losing their willingness to cooperate with change. Worse yet is the high employee change fatigue will increase work friction and lower intent to stay with the organization. Leadership and CHROs must adopt a more collaborative approach and start involving employees throughout the process instead of a straight top-down approach. It raises an individual’s value proposition and steadily surges the sense of belongingness among employees to the company.

*Employee Experience: Compelling careers are critical for retention. Employees in the past left their companies for better development opportunities at similar rates as they left for higher compensation. However, present day fractures have created new career imperatives for HR and companies to change or transform their traditional operational model to career growth moments. New career imperatives need high-per personalized trajectory and progressive goals for employees to experience career options for greater understanding and show many routes to career progress. Offering channels for objective reflection on a periodical basis will create best-fit careers.

The Victorious Vision 

To avoid miss judging what really matters to the employees is hard to explain. Why do companies obsess over cost per hire but spend so little time trying to see if they make good hires? Why do they provide so little training when companies know that it improves performance and employees can foresee the growth within the organization? The values of the organization play a vital role, and employees expect the leaders to walk the talk. “While numerous values can be listed based on industry and business priorities; however, I believe three values must not be compromised, one – employee first (employees must be treated as assets, respect individuals and ideas), two – communication (collaborative, transparent and clarity) and three – well-being (introducing new philosophy and revisit existing practices with changing times).”

Telling more about his firm’s offering and aspects that make it stand out in today’s knowledge economy, Karthik says Omega Healthcare has the deep healthcare expertise, and unmatched proprietary technology, automation capabilities, and analytics solutions. “Thousands of US healthcare enterprises depend on us to help them achieve their financial goals.” Omega Healthcare provides the resources to enable client vision, overcome obstacles, and scale operations to achieve their financial goals. They formally acquired ApexonHealth, Vasta Global, Reventics, and Himagine Solutions.

Omega Healthcare was named a “Leader” in Medical Coding Operations Peak Matrix Assessment 2023 Report; Start performer Revenue Cycle Management (RCM) operations Peak matrix assessment 2023 reports. It is recognized as the 2022 UiPath Automation Excellence Awards Winner. The Cybersecurity Excellence Award and Artificial Intelligence Excellence Award at the 9th and 10th BPO Innovation Summit and Awards 2022.

Technovating Healthcare 

He adds that their 25,000+ employees stand out in helping their clients scale rapidly by expanding capabilities and accelerating cash flow. Has spent nearly two decades working exclusively with providers, payers, pharmacies, and other healthcare stakeholders to provide the financial, administrative, and clinical solutions they need to remain successful.

They continuously leverage the latest technology and innovations so their clients do not have to. By partnering with Omega Healthcare, they first do the strategy to successfully deliver on technology, and automation in healthcare begins with clean data. Next, focus on automating the repetitive process, streamlining workflows, and auditing outputs. Finally, they build effective reporting and analytics tools. Allow their clients to focus on what they do best: Caring for their patients and members.

The Mega Optimistic Future

In his advice to budding leaders who aspire to excel in their career graph like him, Karthik says, “Be the ambassador of Culture and Capabilities. We are living in a different world today than we were yesterday. Our history is full of companies which were once leaders in their respective offerings but lost their top positions because of failing the concept of adaptability of organization culture.” It plays the most important role in shaping the behaviour of leaders, who are the most crucial part of carrying forward the vision of the company. Connecting, Communicating, and Caring the diverse cultures and considering generational gaps along with business dynamics are important.

My submission to all the budding leaders will be: One – to be a proactive problem finder than a reactive problem solves with true spirit and intent of delivering value instead of doing. Two – Student of LARI: Learn, Apply, Reflect, Immerse and Three – Artist, balancing the art of being a Strategist and Tactical in the environment we operate,” he concludes.