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A Journey of Professional Growth and Personal Simplification

Hey, I’m Jaspal Kahlon

When you meet me in person, you'll quickly realize that I'm a seasoned professional thriving in a specialized world. I believe in continually learning and mastering new skills, always pushing myself to go further. I'm not just intelligent; I choose to be known as someone who's smart, always making a conscious effort to expand my knowledge and expertise.

Ai generated image of hills, cyclist, and blue sky with clouds
Jaspal Kahlon at Gurez Valley

About Me

Born and raised in Jamshedpur, an industrial town in Jharkhand, India, my roots are deeply connected to the place where my grandfather settled in the mid-1930s to join a Tata Steel subsidiary. His unwavering dedication influenced me greatly. Throughout his entire 95-year life, he never left the town that became our family's home.

My upbringing was filled with love, thanks to the care and support of my grandparents and parents. In those early years, I wasn't much of a social butterfly, preferring the comfort of home. However, when I left for high school in Chandigarh, I realized the importance of engaging beyond academics. That's when I discovered my passion for cycling—a hobby that kept me active and fulfilled outside of my studies.

In 1996, I embarked on a new chapter of my life in Indore, Madhya Pradesh, where I pursued my graduation and post-graduation. It was during this time that I met the love of my life, and together, we embarked on a journey that took us from Mumbai to Delhi. Finally, in 2016, we found our home in Chandigarh—a city that has now become an integral part of our lives.

As a proud father of two daughters, my family brings immense joy and fulfilment to my life. Witnessing my eldest daughter's journey as she enters her first year of college fills me with a sense of pride and excitement for the possibilities that lie ahead.​

To make a living, I work diligently. Unlike my predecessors, I've embraced the idea of switching jobs, recognizing that it accelerates my learning and adaptability. Each new opportunity is a project for me—a chance to make things happen, to create an impact. Some might call it naive, but that's just who I am. I approach every endeavor with enthusiasm, determination, and a belief that I can make a difference.

So, when we meet face-to-face, you'll see a dedicated professional, always seeking growth and success. But beyond that, you'll encounter a person who is driven, passionate, and unafraid to embrace change. That's the essence of who I am, and it's a pleasure to share that with you.

Experience till Date

Making a living

VICE PRESIDENT OF SALES, JUNGLEWORKS

Joined to build an outbound sales function for SaaS products, but worked more as Business Head leading the team of Tookan plus mentoring the Inside Sales team with better CRM hygiene and sales ops function.

VP MARKET DEVELOPMENT, ABZOOBA

The leadership at Abzooba allows me to embrace the challenge of winning over new customers for our recently launched MLOps platform. Lately, my focus has been primarily on intelligent prospecting, and I'm delighted with the progress I've made.

However, you might wonder why I am leaving this endeavor so soon. The reason is rooted in my ambition more than anything else. When it comes to making a living, I am driven by a deep sense of purpose. I rely on my intuition to guide me towards my next steps.

CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER, ORANE INTERNATIONAL

The beauty skilling company, led by its CEO/Co-founder, lacks a senior leader to spearhead the development of processes and systems. The CEO is in search of someone who can confidently take the lead, be hands-on, and understand the risks of delegating too much too soon.

I stepped up to the challenge and took charge. Empowering teams to make decisions, encouraging them to simplify processes, and reducing dependencies across functions has yielded remarkable results. The combination of "ownership" and empowerment has worked wonders for the organization.

They genuinely miss me. :)

HEAD FINANCE & OPERATIONS, JUGNOO

Startup in Chandigarh with very strong brand recall for being the first auto-aggregator of India.

Founding team 8-10 years younger team who wanted someone experienced but still not an old schooler. ​

I took quick decisions, focused on impact and results and delivered the business goal outlined.

CHIEF FINANCE OFFICER, EASTMAN AUTO & POWER

Joined a Strategy head and transitioned to lead the finance and account function when annual sales were USD 10 mn. 

Built the function from basics of improving working capital management cycle, improving statutory compliances, and minimizing revenue leakages.

I liaison with banks for the most flexible options for meeting the working capital funds and suited the seasonal nature of working capital, got the credit rating improved to A minus from BB plus and saving more than 5% in annual interest costs.

HEAD CORPORATE PLANNING, DENAVE INDIA

The sales outsourcing services company primarily focuses on managing channel sales for leading IT enterprises in India such as Intel, Microsoft, and HP.

I joined this company through the reference of my mentor, Subu, who happened to be a close friend of one of the founders.

They were specifically seeking someone with a strategic mindset who could drive new business ideas and explore alliance opportunities.

During my tenure, I successfully secured an alternate source of funds from a public sector bank, eliminating the need for collateral. Additionally, I took the initiative to personally handle the client relationships for Microsoft and HP.

 

Notably, I achieved significant success in managing the Microsoft relationship, leading to the winning of five major projects.

My contributions in securing funding and effectively managing client relationships have been quite noteworthy.

SENIOR MANAGER STRATEGY, ADITYA BIRLA RETAIL

Aditya Birla Retail (ABRL) was in its initial year of incorporation, being a part of a large industrial group. At that time, organized retail was still in its early stages of development.

In my role, I was responsible for refining the 30-sheet financial model to assess the impact on return on investment (ROI), pay-back period, and additional funding requirements. During the review process, the senior management, including myself, closely aligned our discussions with the Chairman to ensure the business plan's effectiveness. This approach was particularly important since ABRL was in its first year of operation.

I also developed a co-development financial model for the store expansion team, established a partnership for in-store media revenues, and implemented weekly performance tracking reports, all using Excel. Automation was limited, with the exception of an ERP system that was primarily utilized by the Accounts team, and there was a need for more streamlined processes.

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Despite the lack of automation, I worked diligently to optimize financial models, forge strategic partnerships, and provide comprehensive performance reports. These efforts contributed to ABRL's growth and success during its early stages of operation.

MANAGER CORPORATE PLANNING, JASUBHAI

DIGITAL MEDIA

I still wonder why was I hired. The Founder/CEO liked my calculative-academic approach. 

They needed a fresh guy with no prior experience from the industry but has the intellect to build a business model, and prepare information memorandum (Pitch deck). 

Though my role extended to be part of business meeting, finance reviews, and improving reports. I even wrote articles for some magazines of the Company. 

Found my mentor, Subu who has been a great support and guide.

ACADEMIC ASSOCIATE (F&A), INDIAN INSTITUTE OF MANAGEMENT, INDORE

When my batchmate suggested that I appear for an entrance test to be hired as an Academic Associate at IIM Indore, I couldn't help but wonder how working there would align with my plans of pursuing a doctoral program.

To my surprise, I not only cleared the entrance test but also made it through the interview, which involved facing a panel of seven professors seated in a semi-circle inside a spacious conference room. I found myself sitting in the center on a single chair, with no table to conceal the nervous shivers in my legs.

During the interview, I vividly remember answering numerous finance-related questions. Topics such as the cost of capital, various theories, and economic concepts were discussed. However, I faltered when asked to provide the full form of "PhD." Nervously, I murmured "philosphe," but one of the professors kindly corrected me, stating, "it's Doctorate in Philosophy."

Throughout my tenure, I thoroughly enjoyed assisting Prof. LV Ramana and visiting Prof. G Sethu. It felt like completing a PGP program (Post Graduate Program) as I immersed myself in subjects such as Risk Management, Strategic Finance, Quantitative Foundations of Financial Markets, Debt Markets, Financial Accounting, and Stock & Options.

I honed my skills in utilizing MS Excel for financial analysis, extensively read high-quality research papers, and made use of online resources like Ebsco and Proquest for my studies.

As part of my academic journey, I also completed a case study on Maruti Suzuki, delving into its transformation from a government-controlled entity to being owned by Suzuki. This case study provided valuable insights into strategic management and the dynamics of organizational change.

Working at IIM Indore as an Academic Associate not only enhanced my knowledge and understanding of various subjects but also fueled my aspiration to pursue a doctoral program. The experience offered invaluable exposure to academic research, deepened my analytical capabilities, and provided a solid foundation for my future academic endeavors.

ASSISTANT PROFESSOR IN FINANCE, VAISHNAV INSTITUTE OF

MANAGEMENT, INDORE

I was clueless about my next move. Whether to pursue Doctoral Program or find a job. 

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I get to hear about walk-in interview from a batchmate while visiting his place. And, next day I was amongst some 50 plus wannabe lecturers ready to be interviewed for finance alone. 

I was hired. Lucky since this was a small start but aimed at giving me a sense of purpose after my MBA

Honeycomb

SKILLS

Most relevant ones

Responsibility

BUSINESS OPERATIONS

I am proactive and take a hands-on approach to lead transformation, structure teams, and execute business plans

Cash

CORPORATE FINANCE

Well versed in core concepts of finance, working capital management, leverages, cost of capital, firm valuation, financial modelling, and scenario analysis.

Mentoring

MENTORING

In my leadership role, I have been a mentor to my team members.

Communication

COMMUNICATION

Ability to communicate effective is key skill that has let me transition across industries and roles seamlessly.

Business Mindset

BUSINESS MINDSET

I have worked with entrepreneurs and may be that may have helped me to take a broader view of the business situations - competitive scenario, intuition backed with data insights.

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