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Harish Devarajan

Senior Fellow, Human Capital
The Conference Board

Harish Devarajan

Harish has more than 27 years of experience in the corporate and consulting sectors. He started his professional career with TVS Sundram Fasteners Ltd. in 1985, and then in 1989 joined Hindustan Lever Ltd.,India’s leading multi-national company.

Harish has worked in different roles across many functions.  He has been involved in the management, review and launch of various HR processes, policies and systems.  As part of the management development efforts in Hindustan Unilever Ltd. he has been personally involved in training, mentoring and coaching senior managers on leadership skills, team building and performance development. He was the Head of Employee Relations in HUL (2001 – 2004), responsible for all HR matters concerning 38,000 non-management employees spanning 60 units in manufacturing, sales and plantations across India. His last assignment in Hindustan Unilever Ltd. was as Vice President of HR (2004 -2007), where he was responsible for the entire HR function across South Asia (India, Pakistan, Srilanka, Bangladesh and Nepal).

Harish also has rich experience in Change management at a global business context, having worked in Unilever UK as a Global project manager of Enterprise Culture (1999-2001), and having worked as the Vice President of HR Services, (2007-2008) when he managed a major transformation agenda in 40 countries across 3 continents (Asia, Australia, Africa).

He is now a free-lance leadership consultant and executive coach. In 2008, he started his own consulting practice company “People Unlimited,” providing support in the areas of Organizational performance and leadership effectiveness. He is also an Associate Coach for the Centre for Creative Leadership (CCL), a world renowned leadership development organization, and an Executive Director at totus HR School – a newly launched venture.

His hands-on experience in a high performing business environment gives him a deep understanding of how to achieve results through effective leadership of people and teams. Having worked both in a progressive Indian business house as well as in a professional multi-national environment he is able to adapt his services to different client contexts.   

He continues to be a sought after speaker at various management forums and business schools.  He has written and published articles on HR topics in professional journals/ newspapers.  He has presented his views and experiences in a number of management conferences under the auspices of All India Management Association, Confederation of Indian Industries, HRD Network and others. Harish is the immediate past President of the National HRD Network, Bangalore Chapter and he was the convener of the NHRD Network’s 15th National Conference held in Bangalore in November, 2011. 

Harish was honored with the “Exemplary Leader Award” as part of the Employer Branding Awards, India 2007 (recognising excellence in Human Resources).

Harish is a post-graduate in Management from the prestigious XLRI, Jamshedpur, prior to which he graduated from Madras University.