Managing director, Scholastic India

Neeraj Jain is managing director of Scholastic India. Before joining the publishing industry, he worked with media and direct marketing companies and he has also been in the Steering Committee of ‘Excellence in School Education’, an initiative by IIT Delhi. Neeraj obtained his BCom from Hansraj College, Delhi University; charter accountancy from the Institute of Chartered Accounts of India, Delhi; CMA and CFM from the Institute of Management Accountants, USA; and Executive MBA from ISB, Hyderabad. He is member of CII and American Chamber of Commerce.

A. Get to know me

1. Who I am? A fun-loving person.
2. What motivates me? Myself! I motivate myself, easily.
3. How I came into publishing? I like to say it happened ‘accidentally’ when I changed jobs and shuttling from Delhi to Mumbai and vice versa.

B. A day in my life

1. How I start my day? My day begins with my kids— Manavi (10) and Naman (6)—in the early morning and at 8:15 am in the office.
2. How I like to spend leisure time/hours at home? Watching cricket on TV; listening to classic Hindi movie songs and ghazals. Pyar Hame Kis Mod Pe from the Hindi movie Satte Pe Satta is one of my all-time favourites.
3. My day ends at: 10:30 pm.
4. My stress buster: Kids.

C. Life is to LIVE

1. Favourite sports: I love all sports and sport-stars like Sachin Tendulkar in cricket, Brazilian football players like Ronaldo and Neymar as well as others in tennis and badminton.
2. Favourite books: The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand, Hardy Boys series and self-help books.
3. Favourite author: Ayn Rand.
4. Favourite movies: Dil Chahta Hai, 3 Idiots, OMG, Andaz Apna Apna and 99.
5. Favourite actors: Amitabh Bachchan, Aamir Khan, Madhuri Dixit and Raveena Tandon.
6. Favourite destination for a holiday: Countryside of any country.
7. Any bucket list: Watching cricket test matches between India and Australia at Melbourne Cricket Ground and with England at Lord’s as well. Also, I would like to initiate something new in the education sector, which has a larger audience.

D. Work is passion

1. Business/political leader who motivates you: Ratan Tata, who has business acumen and is a nice and humble human being caring about people.
2. Describe your company in one liner: ‘Scholastic is about those places where you get satisfaction of doing something contributed to the society.’
3. My people mantra: Be genuine to them.
4. To be a leader is: To empower your people.
5. An exciting point in a typical day’s work: Being surrounded by children books; thoroughly reading them and be a child again.
6. If you are born again, what would you like to be? A cricketer or an army-man.

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