Manjori Ahmed

Lead Consultant, Service Operations, Bangalore

One of the best things about Colt is the work-life balance but this hasn’t always been my experience in my career.

I have a distinct memory back when working with a previous employer. It was the end of a long day and I was exhausted after staying up until 4am the previous night to deliver some data analytics to USA stakeholders. My parents were unwell and my daughter was just seven years old. I asked myself, ‘what am I doing?’ I typed out my resignation letter and submitted it right there and then.

At the beginning of my break from work, I slept like a log, but then I started to want to do something different, something more. As a child, I was creative, but I never got an opportunity to pursue and refine that talent because I was always told I should only focus on my studies.

I therefore decided to enrol on a six-month course which focused on pencil on paper and acrylic on canvas at Karnataka Chitrakala Parishath – the academy of fine arts in Bangalore. Just one month later I had my first exhibition. I then studied another six-month course which was on watercolour and oil painting because I enjoyed the first so much.

This experience taught me a lot of things. I learnt that there is no age limit for learning and that, even though it requires a lot of patience, painting makes a person calm. The time away from work also helped me to prioritise my life better and see the bigger picture. I was able to take care of the urgent and important things like ailing parents and my very young daughter, and I was able to start thinking about my career in IT again. When we’re in a job, sometimes we forget to stop and look back in retrospect so we can move forwards again.

Now I’m at Colt, I’m able to continue that work-life balance because no one expects me to be constantly online out of office hours. When I finish for the day, I wrap up my household work and then spend at least 30 minutes with my brushes, canvas, and paper. Being at Colt has given me the opportunity to be content with my job and has still given me the time to keep my passion alive.