SJS Selvinson

Senior Vice President and Head of Network Performance, Reliance Jio

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Join SJS Selvinson, Senior Vice President at Reliance Jio, in this inspiring talk as he shares his remarkable journey from humble beginnings to corporate success. Discover the essential ingredients that propelled him forward in the competitive corporate world while remaining rooted in his Christian faith. In this talk, SJS Selvinson provides invaluable insights and practical advice on navigating the corporate hierarchy with grace and humility, maintaining a positive mindset in the face of challenges, fostering innovation through uniqueness, harnessing creativity to solve problems, balancing work and family, and aligning actions with Christian principles. Whether you're a young professional, an aspiring entrepreneur, or someone seeking motivation for personal growth, this video will empower you to thrive in your work. Get ready to be inspired and equipped with the essential tools to excel in the corporate world while prioritising your Christian values!

S.J.S. Selvinson is the Senior Vice President and Head of Network Performance at Reliance Jio's Corporate Head Office in Mumbai. He and his wife, Graciana Selvinson, set up the Catherine Hope Foundation in memory of their late daughter Catherine, who fought against bone cancer. This Foundation strives to help people overcome depression, aid cancer patients, and empower the differently abled in rural areas of our country.

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Excelling with God’s Favour: SJS Selvinson’s Ingredients for Success

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Excelling with God’s Favour: SJS Selvinson’s Ingredients for Success
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I really give glory to God for giving me an opportunity to share what the Lord has done in my life. 

This is my favourite statement, and it is so true: If God can use me, He can use anyone on this planet Earth. So, this is the bottom line you should always keep in mind when I’m sharing: “Lord, you have used this fellow, you can surely use me, Lord.” Because the Bible says, “God chooses the foolish things of the world to shame the wise. God chooses the weak things of the world to shame the strong.” That is how God operates. Many times, we may think that there are smart people around, there are intellectual people around, but God sometimes chooses people like me to shame the wise and to shame the strong people. So, I give glory to God for whatever He has done.

So, my start was a very humble start. It was not a big bang, very humble. I held on to this verse: “I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you,” So, that is what God has promised each one of us. That is the heart of God, the heart of Father God, to bless us, to prosper us. My favourite verse: “Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, and in due time, He will lift you up.” I studied in Karunya. Karunya gave me a strong foundation, so I was so happy when I finished my engineering. I came out, and I entered the world with so much confidence. With a lot of effort, I got a job in Bangalore. My sister helped me to get a job, and I was so happy to step into my corporate career. So, the first job which I got gave me 1800 rupees as salary. So, you can calculate after you give your tithes. And then, I used to send a portion of my salary to my Dad because he was already retired at the time. So, I was left with 1440 rupees to run my show. So, you can calculate how much I gave.

So, I absolutely did not have any idea about the expenses. I just spent, and when the 20th came, I would check my purse. I would be left with a very, very small amount. I was wondering how I’m going to survive, but I didn’t want to bother my Dad. I didn’t want to bother my family. So, I thought I will somehow, you know, live on. So, the 23rd came, the 24th came, and then I knew I was in serious trouble. So, from having food from a good restaurant, I started looking at smaller places along the pavement. Then I lived with the food from the pavement. I used to get a good full plate of food for five rupees. So, I used to have that. And the 27th and 28th came, then I realised even that would not be enough. So, I used to live with a half plate, that is, two rupees and fifty paise. So, that’s how it was. That’s how life started, and month on month after month, the story was the same. I was not at all improving. The same place, I used to get stuck. So, one day, I got so frustrated. I said, “Lord, how long? How long?” And with a small brain, we can do a lot of calculations. So, I also calculated after five years, with all the increments, 10 percent or 15 percent, 20 percent increment, how much I will get. Then, I calculated I will not even touch 5,000 rupees, even after five years. I was wondering where I would be if I went at this speed. So, really frustrated, dejected. I was sitting on a small staircase in front of the house where I was living, and I was just quiet in frustration. I was quiet. At that time, God spoke to me. That was the time God intervened. I heard His still voice, and this is the verse that came, “Humble yourselves under my mighty hand. In due time, I will lift you up.” Jesus is alive today. He’s a living God. He speaks. He’s a loving Father. He intervenes. He cares for us. So, that’s what I learned that day. I jumped out and the depression left within seconds. It left. I said, “Lord, everything is in your hands. You’re going to take care of my life.” After a few months, I got a job in Delhi, at four times the salary. So, this is how God does for us. With our small brains we think of small things, but God has a beautiful plan. Today, you may be thinking, “What will happen to my future? How will I move on in my career?” Leave it to God.Subject yourselves under the mighty hand of God, and He will surely lift you up into your season. - SJS Selvinson Click To Tweet

Favour of God and favour of men is extremely critical. So, when I came to Delhi, I did not know anyone in Delhi. On the first day of the office, the HR team asked me, “You want to meet the CEO?” I was just an engineer at that time, and I was wondering, “How will I go and meet the CEO?” But they said, “You have an opportunity to meet.” I said, “Okay.” So, I just went and met him, and he was talking to me, and he was asking me, “Okay, so, you know, have you found your accommodation?” And I told him, “No, sir, I have not yet found out my accommodation.” So, he told the HR, “Put him in the guest house.” I was not eligible for the guest house, but I don’t know what happened, he put me in the guest house. For the next four years, I was staying in a fully furnished guest house with a caretaker. So, that’s the favour of God and that’s the favour of men. So, when we just trust God, when the presence of God is with us, we cannot sometimes calculate what will happen, because His presence makes all the difference in our lives.

So, today I want to talk about a few critical ingredients which we need to have in our life if we are in the corporate world. My daughter, Evangeline, loves to cook. She loves to try different dishes. So, she’s very careful in choosing the ingredients. Sometimes, she’ll tell me, “Appa, I want this. I want this specific sauce, maybe a Mexican sauce or a taco sauce or something.” I had no idea why she wanted it, but she’s very particular about preparing the dish very well. That ingredient is extremely critical. In the same manner, in corporate life, some of the ingredients are really critical because that is what the world is looking for in us. First and foremost, I want to tell you to show honour and respect to our bosses. Whatever state we may be in, I don’t want to narrate anything, but the first and foremost I want to talk about is to show honour and respect to the bosses. Because when we honour and respect our bosses, one critical thing happens and that is we are aligned to the organisational goals. When we align to the organisational goals, our outcome will be totally aligned to what the organisation wants from us.- SJS Selvinson Click To Tweet So, instead of working independently, we need to be fully aligned to the organisational goal and to respect the bosses so that whatever comes from the top down, we are able to deliver, we are able to contribute. So, that is my first and foremost thing. That’s what the Bible says: “Obey their instructions with great respect and honour. This is the word of God.”

The second most important ingredient is a “can-do” attitude. Very important, you know. When the bosses come and tell us, “Hey, can you do this?” No, sir, you know, if I do this, you know, this will happen. No, you know, I don’t have the talent. I don’t have that material.” So many excuses. Bosses get fed up if we have this attitude. So, what we need to really display in the corporate world is a “can-do” attitude. When I was given the Chief Technology Officer post in my earlier organisation, a very tough terrain, they had placed me there, and whoever went, it was a failure. So, I was just wondering what would happen. But this small attitude which God gave me made me a huge success in that place where I was working. I could turn around the situation, and even the Managing Director of the organisation used to wonder, “Selvin, how have you turned around the situation?” Just one critical “can-do” attitude, because the Bible says, “I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” Hallelujah!

The third ingredient is to “Be different.” If you’ve seen the movie, ‘Chosen’, one of the taglines that comes is, “Get used to different.” It’s very important to be different. When I was in one of the organisations, one person was not at all working well. So, he was earmarked as A4 category, that’s the last and they wanted to fire him. So, my superior said, “Selvin, you just fire him.” Even the HR said, “Fire him.” I said, “No way. I will not fire him. I’m going to work on him.” So, I started working on him. After a few months, he really picked up. I brought him to A2. People were surprised. How this guy who was earmarked to be sent out, how he’s coming to A2? How is it possible? Then, after a few months, I made him A1. Everybody saw his outcome. Amazing, you know. He was so encouraged. He was so motivated. And today also, this man is doing really well in his corporate career. So, we have to be different. We have to get used to being different.

Another important thing, one of the most important things, I will rate this very high, is finding solutions and being creative. It is extremely critical. We have to think out of the box. We have to find creative solutions. We cannot do it by following the traditional route, because that is what the top management is looking for. Wherever God has placed you, whomsoever you are meeting, the top is always looking for solutions, out-of-the-box thinking. The Bible says, “I have heard that you are able to give interpretation and to solve difficult problems.” That is the expectation from us. How we will rise up to that occasion and deliver is what matters the most. With God on our side, we will be able to surely do that, surely be able to meet the expectation. When you’re on the top, what matters is an excellent spirit. It is not the talent, it is not the exceptional qualities, it is the excellent spirit. The Lord said, ‘I will pour out My spirit upon all flesh,’ irrespective of whomever that person may be. We need to ask, we need to receive, we need to have this excellent spirit if we have to interpret things which human wisdom cannot do, which human wisdom cannot comprehend. We need to have this. We have to depend on the spirit of God because He will give revelations, He will give solutions which the human brain cannot comprehend.- SJS Selvinson Click To Tweet So, wherever you may be, just receive Him. Move in that revelation, and you’ll be highly successful.

Family support is very important. I love my wife, and she is a big strength to me. She is a pillar of support. I share everything with her. I tell her, “No, this is what happened.” She is a companion. So, we need to really make use of that. We need to capitalise on that. We need to leverage that. We need to tell whatever we are going through. We may be going through tough times. She’ll always cool me down, and then she will tell me, “Just cool down,” and give me wise counsel. So, I’m so blessed to have her in my life, and I give glory to God. The lighter moments in the family are so critical. Okay, even two weeks back, I had a pillow fight with my daughter, threw things and made the house a mess. It doesn’t matter. Sometimes, we are so organised, we are so structured, we don’t want to get out of that traditional and mechanical approach. But I think we should keep the lighter moments with the family. Go out with them, enjoy the bigger family moments. That will take out a lot of stress from our life. So, family support is extremely critical. 

The next important point is to have a ‘Kingdom First’ mentality. We need to carve out time. If we don’t share the gospel, who will share? Jesus was wounded for our sins. He took the punishment of the whole world. It’s good news. He died and He rose again. He has promised eternal life. That’s a fact. That is reality. That is the truth. We need to share. Why? From the wealthiest to the poorest, one day they have to leave the world. Nobody can say, “I will book a seat on this planet Earth for the next hundred years.” Impossible. One day, everyone has to leave this earth. But where will they be? Where will they spend eternity? That news is with us. Is it not good news? 

If you’re going through tough times, I would say, ‘Hang on. Diamonds are created under pressure.” One of the bosses was very tough on me. You know, when I used to come home every day, I prayed: “Lord, if this cup passes from me, let it be so. But nevertheless, not as I will, but your will.” I prayed many, many times. But within six months, I got a critical promotion. A critical promotion which was not at all possible to get because I was too young for the promotion. I got it because, by the grace of God, I endured the fire. So sometimes just hang on.

The last topic for my day, the most important topic for my day, is about my daughter, Catherine Selvinson. She went to be with the Lord two years back. She fought a tough cancer battle, a high-grade bone cancer, and chemo-resistant cancer. She had to face nine surgeries and 17 high-grade and high-dosage chemo cycles. Her body was torn apart from head to toe. But the most important thing is, she never went into depression. Not even a single day. She had to lose a leg. The cancer was there so we had to remove the leg. But she thanked the Lord. Just before the amputation, she said, “I thank my Jesus for giving me two legs for the last 15 years. I could go to school, meet with so many people. I could play handball. I could do so many things. I thank Him for giving me two legs.” This she confessed just three days before the amputation. You know, she always kept the joy of the Lord. She always gave importance to the grace of God. She said, “God will give me more grace, more than the problems.” What we have seen in our life is till the end, she loved the Lord. The last statement she made, “Even if the Lord takes me, I will trust in Him.”Just a few days before she went to be with the Lord. So, this is the statement I want to read and close. This is the last statement she made: 

“I know if God is allowing this, He will take it. He has a plan. He’s looking at the big picture. No matter how hard it is to believe, whatever He does for us is always for our good. I will trust in Him because I know He is good. I believe He will take care of Mom, Dad, and Chicky too. He loves me, He loves us. I love Him.”

The statement she made at the pinnacle of pain. She used to have morphine like chocolates, pain after pain. She wrote the statement, “I love Him.” So, I give glory to God. The Lord is faithful. He will finish the work which He has started. I give glory to God.

 

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