Passion for global innovation

by Arun Shankar   26 April, 2017
Passion for global innovation

Genius Wong is President of Global Network Services, Cloud and Data Centre Services at Tata Communications.

Genius Wong is the President of Global Network Services at Tata Communications, where she has spent almost half her professional life. She brings to this exciting and challenging profile in the organization over two decades of experience.

Tata Communication is the largest carrier of international wholesale voice, carrying 47.6 billion minutes of voice traffic annually. Over 25% of the world’s Internet routes is carried over their network, which includes the world’s largest subsea cable network.

This position of global enablement provides Genius and her team a vast arena to innovate and develop standout services and solutions in a highly competitive environment. Making the Internet fit for business, incorporating cloud into its portfolio, enabling an open infrastructure ecosystem, and facilitating digital transformation for enterprises are part of this mission. “There is never a dull moment for me at Tata Communications,” she remarks.

Making headway in this realm of technology and developing solutions for its global customers is an exciting part of her job role. Her team understands that global businesses face three priority challenges: cost, complexity and security. And Genius is particularly proud of developing Tata Communications’ IZO cloud enablement platform.

“This takes the complexity out of cloud computing with products designed to give the enterprise greater predictability, productivity and agility. At Tata Communications, we are constantly challenging ourselves and this results in best-in-class offerings for our customers.”

The IZO platform will help CIOs manage every aspect of their cloud infrastructure as one.

Genius has had an affinity for technology likening it to being a hobby at an early part of her life. She went on to do a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science and Master’s programme in Electrical Engineering in the United States. She now believes that technology is the most important component that kindles innovation. “It gives a chance to build curiosity, challenge the norm and finally innovate. The idea of being able to create, change, and affect vast portions of our present through technology has always fascinated me.”

A workplace for Genius is about bringing together diversity in voices, values and ideas in new ways and through collaboration open-up untapped potential. There also needs to be a determination and commitment for the long haul and a passion for knowledge and learning to accomplish big things in a world of unknowns. “While there are different approaches to the how’s and whys of effective leadership, the key to success is almost always a strong sense of belief in what you are doing and the possibilities it presents.”

Genius has long working hours during the week but closes the book on Friday night for weekends with her family, when she is not travelling. She finds it greatly fulfilling to spend quality time with senior citizens in nursing homes and hospitals. “Most of them have very few visitors in the day and they look forward to having a chance to share and talk to someone. They do not expect much more than just a patient ear.”

On the technology front the industry is coming to terms with adoption of software defined networking and network function virtualization. But for the telecommunication industry disruption is expected to happen with the adoption of artificial intelligence to drive connectivity. This will create universal connectivity without boundaries that will seamlessly route users to the best possible network, with everyone and everything, always connected, everywhere.

“This will be the biggest shift the industry has seen in years. We will start moving away from a fragmented, distributed network matrix to a global, ubiquitous network topology, powered by artificial intelligence.” And is a challenge the telecommunication industry needs to start in 2017.

At Tata Communications, Genius is amongst the three women in the top leadership team including its CFO and CMIO, who are also from the technology industry. She believes gender lines have started blurring in this industry and it is an exciting time to be a woman in technology.

Organisations such as Girls who code, are working towards inspiring girls to pursue computer science by exposing them to real life challenges and mentoring. “I urge women and young girls to look at technology as a viable career option where they can learn, grow, innovate and build things themselves.”

To keep the momentum going, it is critical to encourage women in technology and nurture them to become future leaders.


Key takeaways

  • An ultimate workplace is about recognising, maximizing, celebrating, great many different voices, values, ideas they bring
  • It is an exciting time to be a woman especially in technology
  • Key to success is almost always a strong sense of belief in what you are doing and possibilities it presents
  • Technology gives a chance to build curiosity, challenge the norm and finally innovate
  • The idea of being able to create, change, affect vast portions of our present through technology has always fascinated me
  • There are different approaches to effective leadership
  • We will start moving away from fragmented, distributed network matrix to a global, ubiquitous network topology, powered by AI

Comfortable with technology from a young age, Genius Wong enjoys driving innovation with her global team, encouraging gender and work diversity, and commitment to the end goal.


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