I had the best childhood, growing up in a city that was a melting pot of ethnicities and languages. My love for people grew quickly through my school days. But at the same time, a change was taking place inside me. I still vividly remember my school trip to a low-income housing community when I was 14 years old. Seeing the plight of inhabitants and spending a day with them touched me like nothing else ever had before. "I want to do something for society when I grow up", I said to myself.
Four years later, in my first year of undergraduate studies, I joined the international social service organization called The Leo (Lions) Club. It was a defining moment of my life. I worked with 60 bright students, meticulously chosen from the freshmen to the senior year. I was instantly in my element! I recognized my passion for working with people, my knack for meticulous planning, and my drive to work in a purpose-driven industry. It is also there that I discovered the 3Ps of my life: People, Purpose, and Planning. By my junior year, I was convinced I wanted to be a social entrepreneur when I grew up.
But if you are growing up in India, you really have no options. You can either become a doctor or an engineer, or at best a lawyer. Having come from a family of engineers, my choice was pretty straightforward. Fast-forward a few years, I joined my then dream company, GE Healthcare, as a Biomedical Engineer. It is here that I realized the magnitude of my actions – a single line of code could really change how a patient's brain looked like in an MRI scan! Wow!
In another instance, I created an opportunity to tenaciously drive a major safety concern to its resolution, which affected about 5,000 employees daily at the company. I had achieved it despite several push-backs. It was then that I realized how I have always been a woman who believes in her conviction over conventions. Since then, I never looked back. On several occasions, I have used the power of persuasion and self-belief to create success stories for myself and for the people around me.
GOTR was born out of the same conviction.Primarily, GOTR was born out of utter dissatisfaction – dissatisfaction with the status quo of MBA Schools and their rigid conformity to outdated recruiting practices. With all due respect, a full-time MBA program has all the resources for the student to excel, but often lacks the strategy to organize and execute. I saw in dismay how the rat race for placement left high potential students stuck in a rut. They sounded robotic and scripted in mock interviews. They had lost sight of what they really wanted to do and what they were good at. A few could carve out their journey, but most were barely keeping up.
Witnessing the many problems, I was getting increasingly frustrated with the system. I knew I could not immediately change the system, so I decided to start a service to help students see their real selves once again, to help them use that in interviews, and ultimately to create a win-win situation. This is my aspiration and seeing the "real me’" shine in students is the most rewarding thing to me on any given day!
In GOTR, my role is that of an enabler. As one of my mentees aptly says, “Ruchika doesn’t give you all the answers, instead she guides you down a path to help you find the answers for yourself. This ability to help individuals help themselves is a quality that the best teachers possess. I am truly grateful for her mentorship!”
People often ask me why I turned down two successful job offers right after my MBA to create GOTR. My answer is simple. They might have offered me incredible opportunities for success, but not fulfillment, which was my prime driver.
Through GOTR, my goal is to help you find yours!
When I am not working...
- you can either find me in the company of my best friend a.k.a my husband
- or off the beaten path trying to explore the rugged beauty of America
- ...or last but not the least debating and challenging the status quo with my friends.