What makes UST unique and why I love working there

Krishna Sudheendra CEO, UST

We anchored ourselves in a bold purpose beyond ourselves that has shown us the way since the beginning.

Meet Krishna

Krishna Sudheendra CEO, UST

Krishna Sudheendra CEO, UST

One of the greatest joys of being part of UST is that it refreshes and rejuvenates you. It’s like taking a dip in a cool pond. It’s a feeling and an experience to be cherished. An unparalleled experience. That’s why UST is unique. And I’m proud of our organization’s uniqueness.

I’m sure every organization is unique. But what sets UST apart from the rest is that right at the beginning, we chose a path unlike any other. We anchored ourselves in a bold purpose beyond ourselves that has shown us the way since the beginning, helping us empower our customers, community and people. UST started in the most unlikely places, and our purpose drove this decision, too. We founded our company in a city that was an unusual choice for a tech company in 1999. And that was only the first of the many bold and distinctive decisions that followed. We were unique in the choices we made in the cities where we established our offices – you will find us in Penang and not in Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia. And in Guadalajara and not Mexico City, for instance.

As the years went by, we paved a road that progressed toward realizing a matchless vision fueled by a unique purpose. We went to select clients and created the UST ethos of ‘select clients, more attention.’ Our thinking was shaped by the belief that unless we are a partner of significance to a select few, we cannot transform lives. To put this in perspective and to highlight how UST’s uniqueness is made possible in tangible terms, I’d like to discuss an aspect that makes UST what it is. The UST Handprint and our core values and the way they are intertwined. The two are irrevocably aligned, and each of their designs shines a light on that rare fabric UST is made of.

The UST Handprint is a framework specifying behaviors demonstrating UST’s work philosophy. It is a beautifully designed concept that clarifies how UST approaches life and work. Just as our fingers guide us in the right direction and help us fulfill responsibilities and functions, the UST Handprint outlines behaviors we need to practice in the organization.


Live the values – live the UST life

To live the UST way of life means to ‘Live the values’ and that’s the first tenet of the Handprint. This is where this framework is completely aligned with our core values of Humility, Humanity and Integrity. These values are for us to reflect on and to be demonstrated in our behavior toward our coworkers, customers, and communities. In many ways, these three values encapsulate a humane and empathetic life. Living these values would help us in UST and everywhere we go.


Put the clients first – empathy first

Right from the beginning, UST has always been a people-first organization and here, the needs of our clients and their clients govern our goals and interests. Putting the client first is perfectly aligned with our core value of humanity. Anticipating, meeting, and exceeding client expectations has always made UST one of the most client-centric companies I know. We believe in safeguarding the long-term interests of clients. I think this is key to creating life-long relationships as well. This is why we keep ourselves fit enough to run a marathon and not a sprint. We’re in for the long haul. It also explains why UST has not just employees who have been with us for more than 20 years but also clients who have stuck with us for long periods.


Inspired people – enlightened spirits

Every day at UST is like a first day at work. I remember when I started. The excitement, the eagerness and the enthusiasm of it all. The promise of starting something new at an organization where inspiration flowed freely… As USsociates, we get the opportunity to stay inspired and inspire others. We get to motivate others through our own example and demonstrate how a positive and illuminated mind can move mountains. UST is the place for individuals who want to grow into inspired and inspiring leaders. ‘Inspired people’ are all aspiring leaders at UST who wish to make a difference for their teams and clients at work.


Passionate entrepreneurship – the pathway to growth

The fourth tenet of the Handprint, ‘passionate entrepreneurship,’ is about innovation. It always brings to my mind a beautiful garden. The garden of UST, where all of us are nurturing our plants, is entirely responsible for growing them from scratch and watching them become large trees. In this garden, we come up with ideas; we innovate, fail, and try again until we get it right. UST’s innovation mindset prompted us to bring a limousine to a small city like Trivandrum in the 1990s and drive our clients in it. It was bold and innovative thinking, far ahead of those times. We are encouraged to take risks and innovate. Everyone at UST is an entrepreneur whose projects are like their own enterprises. And so, they constantly go the extra mile to innovate and achieve success. At the same time, they are not afraid to fail. UST is a culture that embraces failures and the lessons that come with them.


Execution mindset – get, set, go

The fifth and final element in the Handprint is the ‘execution mindset.’ We may have the best ideas in the world, but without a mindset that breaks down the implementation, owns the operations and sees it to the finish line, we cannot see those ideas taking off. Quite often, the best ideas fail because they are operationalized poorly. Here, the execution mindset ensures initiatives and programs fall in place. We execute our plans and programs with integrity, walking the talk and delivering with integrity.

Each of these five tenets of the UST Handprint keeps us all connected to our vision and purpose. It uniquely binds us to the UST way of life, shining like the north star. Here, we respect everyone and learn from each other. Here, we live the values. There’s no hierarchy, true to what our founding chairman, the late Mr. G. A. Menon, said; in UST, we give responsibilities, not orders. Nobody has a chip on their shoulder. And everybody has a voice and an opportunity to express their opinions.

Somebody once asked me why I joined UST and chose to stay on. My answer then, now and in the future:

When an organization helps us lead a meaningful life inside and outside the workplace with such matchless and purposeful frameworks, where we meet fantastic individuals and get opportunities to do something extraordinary ever so often, how can we not become part of it? I love UST because it allows me to lead a unique life.