Last week, I celebrated my two-year anniversary with Hitachi Vantara. I joined just four months after the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a global pandemic. At the time, I never could have anticipated the twists and turns we would face or that it would be nearly 18 months before I met some of my leaders in person, or two full years before I made my first trip to Hitachi headquarters in Japan.
From a business perspective, it has been a time of exhilaration and challenge, successes and failures, big wins and many bumps and bruises along the way. And, like many of you, I struggled physically, mentally, and emotionally as time ticked on.
Someday in the future, the exact number of days, weeks, and months associated with COVID-19 will fade, but we will never forget the loss of family members, friends, and colleagues; the time that elapsed between visits with friends and family; virtual school; the holidays missed; or the elation of the first hug given and received when it was safe to do so.
But what I’ve found most notable from living and working through the pandemic are the countless instances of empathy and generosity demonstrated by our Hitachi Vantara colleagues, customers, and partners; the small moments of grace given to each other as we adjusted to working and living in the same space, often with kids, pets and other people in the background of our Zoom calls.
Surely, the last two years have proven that it is nearly impossible to predict what is coming next. Of course, the pandemic has not been the only issue we’ve faced. And yet, with each obstacle, conflict, or tragedy, I have found that, whatever it is, Hitachi Vantara and its customers and partners can and will rise up to meet it together.
Collectively, we will continue to face challenges – from global hyperinflation and continued supply chain constraints to geopolitical tensions and continuing conflict in Ukraine. But as we’ve shown in the past, we are stronger together and more resilient when in support of each other.
I’m proud to lead and be a part of an organization that lives our corporate values of harmony, sincerity and pioneering spirit, each day, but especially through times of challenge.
Gajen Kandiah is Chief Executive Officer, Hitachi Vantara.
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