Board of Directors

Pradipta K. Mohapatra
Co–Founder & Chairman

Pradipta, co-founder of CFI, is a business leader with over three decades of experience in managing large Indian businesses as well as British, American and Japanese companies in India. He pioneered India's foray into modern organised retailing as well as early digital media and e-commerce. He has experience in managing businesses in IT, Telecom, Entertainment, Pharmaceuticals and Biotech Businesses. He sits in the board of 20 publicly listed as well as private companies in India, Sri Lanka, Japan, China, UK and USA.

Pradipta is also the co-founder of Chennai Business School Limited (www.cbs.org.in) that assists young professionals to study management post graduation in important industry verticals. Pradipta also assists and coaches a large number of first time young entrepreneurs to succeed in their businesses.

Pradipta has led Industry and Businesses of Southern India by Chairing Confederation of Indian Industries (CII). The CII members represent about 50% of India's Businesses and Industries (www.cii.in). At the National level Pradipta significantly contributes assisting Industries and Government in policy formulation by being members of CII's National Committees on Affirmative action, Ethics and Governance and Corporate Social Responsibility.

Pradipta contributes to enhancement of management knowledge by speaking and writing extensively in Indian and global forums. He co-authored "India's Global Power houses" published by Harvard Business School Press. He studied his Under-graduation in Chemical Engineering and Management at Bombay University and Harvard Business School. He was invited to be a Fellow of Chartered Management Institute, UK and was president of Madras Management Association. Pradipta travels extensively around the world and represents India in many global forums and conferences.

Ganesh Chella
Co-Founder & Vice – Chairman

Ganesh Chella is the founder of totus consulting, a strategic Human Resource Consulting firm. He is also the Co-Founder & Vice Chairman of CFI (Coaching Foundation India Limited), a pioneering institution that leverages the power of Executive Coaching to enhance the quality of business leadership in India.

Ganesh recently founded totus HR School, a pioneering initiative to promote the continuing professional development needs of HR practitioners in India.

He is widely respected and acknowledged for his contributions as a practitioner, consultant, coach, teacher and thought leader in the field of Human Resources and Executive Coaching. Ganesh has over 100 published articles to his credit including a column that he used to write for The Hindu Business Line.

Ganesh is an alumnus of XLRI, Jamshedpur and a professional member of the Indian Society for Applied Behavioural Sciences.

Ganesh's book titled "Creating a Helping Organisation – 5 engaging ways to promote employee performance growth and well – being" was launched on November 11, 2011.

R. Ramaraj
Co-Founder & Director

Ramaraj, Co-Founder and Director of Coaching Foundation of India, is a serial entrepreneur who has been involved in ventures in IT cellular and Internet. His last venture was Sify, where he was the Co-Founder and CEO, and was the first Indian Internet Company from India to list on NASDAQ National Market in the US (NASDAQ –SIFY). He was recognized as the 'Evangelist of the Year' at the India Internet World Convention in September 2000 and was also voted the IT Person of the year 2000. And in 2001, in a CNET.com poll in India.

Currently, he is the Senior Advisor at Sequoia Capital. He is also associated with a couple of funds focusing in the social sector. He is a Member of the Board of Governors of the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta.

He is the first Indian to be invited to the Board of Directors of ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers). He was a member of the Global Board of Trustees of TiE (The Indus Entrepreneurs).

In 2010, CII recognized him with a Life Time Achievement Award for nurturing the Spirit of Entrepreneurship and inspiring and mentoring numerous entrepreneurs. R. Ramaraj holds a B.Tech in Chemical Engineering from the University of Madras and a M.B.A. from the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta.

Ashok Jayaram
Director & CEO

Ashok Jayaram is Chief Executive Officer of Coaching Foundation India Limited (CFI). He is responsible for all the day-to-day operations of the institution, as well as for setting long-term vision, strategy and goals, and for overseeing the planning and execution of activities leading to their fulfillment.

Ashok's professional career, spanning over 39 years, has taken him through a variety of marketing and general management roles, the immediately preceding one being a 19-year stint as the Country Head and Managing Director, Rotork Controls India Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of the UK based Rotork plc, the market leader, globally and in India, in valve actuation and controls.

His marketing experience is derived from 16 years in Best & Crompton Engineering, Chennai and Guest Keen Williams, Calcutta, handling a wide range of engineered products (steel forgings, automotive electrical, lifts, pumps, industrial carbons) and electrical turnkey projects (sub-stations, transmission lines, railway electrification).

Ashok is B.E (Hons) in Mechanical Engineering from BITS, Pilani and Post Graduate Diploma in Management from the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta.




Management Team


Ashok Jayaram
Director & CEO

Ashok Jayaram is Chief Executive Officer of Coaching Foundation India Limited (CFI). He is responsible for all the day-to-day operations of the institution, as well as for setting long-term vision, strategy and goals, and for overseeing the planning and execution of activities leading to their fulfillment.

Ashok's professional career, spanning over 39 years, has taken him through a variety of marketing and general management roles, the immediately preceding one being a 19-year stint as the Country Head and Managing Director, Rotork Controls India Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of the UK based Rotork plc, the market leader, globally and in India, in valve actuation and controls.

His marketing experience is derived from 16 years in Best & Crompton Engineering, Chennai and Guest Keen Williams, Calcutta, handling a wide range of engineered products (steel forgings, automotive electrical, lifts, pumps, industrial carbons) and electrical turnkey projects (sub-stations, transmission lines, railway electrification).

Ashok is B.E (Hons) in Mechanical Engineering from BITS, Pilani and Post Graduate Diploma in Management from the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta.

Dr. Swaminathan Sabesan
Director, Programs & Research

Dr.Swaminathan Sabesan is a positive psychologist from an applied behavioral science background. He has a doctorate in Organizational Behavior along with a post-doctoral diploma in training and development.

He has more than 23 years of professional experience that includes teaching, research, assessment, facilitation, mentoring, coaching and institution building. He has had the distinct privilege of working closely with more than 75 CEOs and CXOs in the recent years and has helped them in achieving their developmental goals.

Dr.Sabesan is known for his uncanny understanding of the unique complexities and challenges of human behavior. He also comes across as a professional who empowers his clients to think differently through feed forward developmental conversations.

Dr.Sabesan is a consultant to few MNCs and also a behavioral catalyst to senior HR and Business Leaders. He works passionately on improving the quality of life and helps people reach their true potential through the power of positive psychology and emotional intelligence.

As a qualified psychologist, he has standardized and administered several psychometric tests to thousands of professionals and non- professionals over the past twenty two years.

Dr.Sabesan was certified as facilitator in HRD by Mangalore University. Thomas International, UK has certified him on Person Profile Analysis and Emotional Intelligence. Academy of HRD, Ahmedabad has certified him on MPTI. Change Works India and CFI Graduate School of Coaching have certified him on Appreciative Inquiry and Appreciative Coaching. Multi Health Systems, USA has certified him on EQi 2.0 and EQ 360.

He is the author of courseware on Human Resource Management and Educational Psychology for few South Indian Universities.

He was also on the board of Ph.D evaluation in Psychology for Bharathiyar University.

He has also guided pre-doctoral scholars and doctoral scholars in Psychology. He has published several articles in journals of repute and presented papers at National and International conferences.

Dr.Sabesan has authored few cases and has reviewed four books so far and the latest is on ‘Passion into Profession- Retire Young and Love Monday Morning.

He is an editorial consultant for Indian Journal of Applied Psychology and for Sage Publications.

He has co-created the coaching model and coaching readiness framework.

Dr. Sabesan is the university first rank holder and also the recipient of several awards that include “Psychometric Educational Services award for the valuable services and contributions to HRD” by the Chief Minister of Pondicherry and the All India Merit Awardee of Indian Society for Training and Development (ISTD), New Delhi.

Dr. Sabesan is a motivational speaker and has addressed various forums like NIPM, ISTD and MMA. He has also appeared in several talk shows for DD Pothigai on Elamai Inimai, Manakavalai Matral Elithu, Santhitha Velayil on Kalaignar TV, SS Music and Moon TV.

Dr.Sabesan has been with Coaching Foundation India ever since April 2007 as the Director- Director- Programs & Research. He is proactively involved in all areas including program design, program content, program development, program delivery, comprehensive competence assessment, IP creation, certification and the institution building. He has contributed six state - of - art articles on coaching published in CFI’s Coaching Digest

R. Lalitha
Accounts Executive

Lalitha is a Commerce Graduate from Madras University, Chennai with over 12 years of corporate experience. Lalitha handles for all aspects of course logistics and administration in addition to managing Finance and Accounts.




Honorary Fellows


Anil Sachdev
Founder & CEO, Grow Talent Company and SOIL

Anil Sachdev is the Founder & CEO of Grow Talent Company Limited and the School Of Inspired Leadership-SOIL. Grow Talent was created in July 2000 and became the leader in the strategic HR consulting industry by 2006.It enabled large number of Global and local firms organizations to achieve breakthrough performance by realising the potential of their people and creating a talent advantage.

Anil's experience in India and across the world covers areas such as talent management, strategic change and organizational transformation. Recognised as a thought leader in Leadership Development and Organizational Transformation, Anil has done pioneering work with leading global and local firms.

Anil serves on the Academic Committee of CEDEP, the Leadership Institute at Fontainbleau and is a Trustee of the Global NGO, Chinmaya Mission and has been the Chair of the National Committee on Leadership Development of CII for 2011-12 and 2012-13.

His biography appears in "Who's who of the world" published by Marquis in 1991.

Aroon Joshi
Founder & Professional Member, Indian Society for Applied Behavioral Sciences

Aroon Joshi has over 48 years of experience in a variety of industries. He is deeply committed to personal growth and leadership development and has championed this at the individual and organization level in his role as founding member of Indian Society for Applied Behavioral Sciences and in the course of his corporate tenure with Metal Box, Cadburys and RPG. His educational background includes B.A. and L.L.B. Presently, he is an Executive Coach to a number of very senior persons in industries as varied as Engineering, IT, Plantations and Petroleum.

Bhaskar Bhat
Managing Director, Titan Industries

Bhaskar Bhat, is a B.Tech in Mechanical Engineering from IIT Madras and has completed his Post Graduate Diploma in Management from IIM Ahmedabad. Most of his working experience has been in Sales & Marketing. He started his career as a Management Trainee at Godrej & Boyce Manufacturing Co. Pvt. Ltd in 1978. After spending five years at Godrej, he joined the Tata Watch Project which was initiated at Tata Press Limited. Since 1983 he has been associated with the Tata Watch Project which later became Titan Watches Limited and is now Titan Industries Limited. At Titan, Bhaskar Bhat has handled Sales & Marketing, HR, International Business and general managerial assignments.

Bhaskar Bhat is also the member of the Governing Council at the T.A.Pai Management Institute, Manipal and the SDM Institute of Management and Development, Mysore.

Mr. Bhaskar Bhat received the Distinguished Alumnus Award in IIT Madras in the year 2008

It was during his tenure that Titan became the 'Changing face of time' through the establishment of the largest retail chain in its category "The World of Titan", Tanishq boutiques, Gold Plus stores and Eye Plus stores.

After Bhaskar Bhat took over the reins as Managing Director from 1st April 2002, the Company has embarked on a journey of becoming a billion dollar Corporation by 2010 with multiple businesses i.e. watches, jewellery, eyewear and precision engineering, marketing its products in over 35 countries.

Dr. Santrupt Misra
Director, Global HR & CEO, Carbon Black Business

Santrupt Misra is CEO, Carbon Black Business and Director, Group Human Resources of the Aditya Birla Group. He is a Director on the Aditya Birla Management Corporation Private Limited Board, the apex decision making body of the USD 40 billion, Aditya Birla Group.

Santrupt is a Director on the Board of the Aditya Birla Science & Technology Company Ltd., Alexandria Carbon Black Co. SAE., Thai Carbon Black Public Co., Ltd., and The Alexandria Fiber Co., SAE., which are part of the Aditya Birla Group and holds several key positions in many educational, professional bodies and Chambers of Commerce and Business.

He is on the Global Advisory Board of the Association of Executive Search Consultants (AESC); is a Member of the Society of Fellows of the Aston Business School Society and is a Member of the Advisory Board of the Committee on Accreditation and Psychological Testing (CAPT). He was conferred with the Fellowship of the National Academy of Human Resources (NAHR), U.S.A. Dr Misra was appointed as Hon. Fellow of the Executive & Business Coaching Foundation India Limited (CFI) and was on the Board of the Worldwide ERC (Employee Relocation Council) for the period 2008-2010. He was the President of the National HRD Network - 2002 to 2005.

Dr. Misra has over 26 years of experience in Education, Training, Consulting and Executive Development and has had full-time professional work experience with the J.K. Group, the Tata Institute of Social Sciences and Unilever, India.

He holds two postgraduate degrees – In Political Science & in Personnel Management & Industrial Relations – Dr. Misra has won four gold medals in his educational career and having stood first class first in various university exams. He has two PhDs, one from India and the other from the Aston Business School in the UK, in Public Administration and Industrial Relations, respectively. He has over 3 decades of corporate experience with Unilever; served on the Boards of Unilever subsidiary companies in India & abroad. A decade's experience executive as coach a serving professional mostly Fortune listed companies; also serves as master coach and leadership development facilitator for leading Indian conglomerates of great repute.

R.R. Nair
Former HR Director, Hindustan Unilever

R.R. Nair has over 3 decades of corporate experience with Unilever. He has served on the Boards of Unilever subsidiary companies in India & abroad. He has more than a decade's experience as a professional executive coach serving mostly Fortune listed companies. He also serves as master coach and leadership development facilitator for leading Indian conglomerates of great repute. He is a frequent speaker in professional forums.

Nair serves as an Independent Director for a few companies including BASF India. He is on the Advisory Board Member of Schneider-electric. He is a master coach for programs on leadership skills for top management at Indian School of Business. He is an Honorary Fellow of Coaching Foundation India.

He believes that "coaching primarily aims to improve performance as well as to harness the potential of the client. Coaching is also in the context of business strategy and goals. Coaching is not intellectual; it happens in action. It is not a 'cookie-cutter' approach. By interacting dynamically with the client, the coach can help what the client needs: be it ways to enhance leadership effectiveness of the client and the team, develop potential, to take a strategic view of role and contribution, or to lead effectively a change initiative". Among the conditions for effective coaching, he places high importance on building on the strengths of the client as well as on building a trusting relationship.

Over the years, through his global corporate management experience and academic interests, he has developed a 'coaching mindset'. And, the skill sets that enable clients to identify solution opportunities, set goals, develop an action agenda, and achieve their growth plans. These skills are not just tools but creative ways of uplifting the clients in their effort to improve the quality of their lives.

Nair is a Graduate & Post-graduate Degrees and Diplomas in applied Psychology, Industrial Management and Individual & Group Development; Alumnus of IIT Kharagpur, India and Stanford & Michigan Universities through their advance management programs. His hobbies and interest include time spent with the family, professional bodies, teaching in business schools, social work, golf and movies.

Dr. B. J. Prashantham
Director, Institute for Human Relations, Counselling and Psychotherapy, CCC Vellore

B. J. Prashantham is a world renowned psychologist/professor with over 40 years of experience as a trainer and supervisor of Counsellors and Executive Coaches. Education from undergraduate to Post-doctoral levels in Counselling at Hyderabad, Chicago, Texas Medical Centre, Houston, and Ohio State University. He is committed to training rigour and competency enhancement and has trained over 100 CEO's in Executive Coaching Skills. He is lead trainer and Member of CFI Board.

He is a Professor of Counselling Psychology & Director at Institute of Human Relations, Counselling and Psychotherapy, Christian Counselling Centre, Vellore.

He has versatile competencies in areas like corporate coaching, counselling, clinical work, cross-cultural psychology as well as in psycho-neuro-immunology and has been a consultant on cross-cultural communication, coaching and counselling to global Conferences – among them are Microsoft, Infosys, SAP Princeton Training Corporation, etc.

His credentials include being the Resource person at Global Learning Resource Team of Duke Corporate Education (DCE) which is (rated as No.1 in the world for delivery of Corporate Education by Financial Times UK). Associated with London School of Economics and IIM(A).

He is also President, Association for Psychological Counselling (APC) and Clinical Faculty at University Of Washington's Global Health Department on mental health, disaster mental health and cross-cultural communication.

He is the author of a Best-seller book 'Indian Case Studies in Therapeutic Counselling and many Journal articles. Also his books are translated into Tamil and Korean.

He is married to Mrs. Meena Prashantham, who is also Professor and Associate Director of the Centre. They have two married sons and two grandchildren.

Currently he is doing a program for State Bank of India GMs and CGM's on transitioning through retirement.

Dr. Zahid H. Gangjee

A major part of Zahid Gangee's career, almost 16 years, was with ITC (an associate of BAT Plc., UK) at Calcutta; the last 5 years as Chief of the Manpower Development Group (reporting to the Chairman). This was a profit centre providing HR, OD & Training Consultancy to the divisions and companies of ITC and externally. He started his own Organization and HR Consultancy in August 1995. His clients include leading multi-national and family owned corporations in India. He has consulted and conducted / taught at developmental programs for the Private & Public Sectors, Govt., NGO's etc., in India and abroad. He has headed the HRD Committee of the Indian Chamber of Commerce, Calcutta and is a member of the Advisory Panel of the monthly publication "Human Capital". His educational background includes B.Sc (Psy. Hons), M.Sc (Applied Psy), Fellow, IIM Ahmedabad.