Group Business Director (Innovation, Ethnography & Design Thinking) –IMRB International (in their qualitative research division – PQR), Bangalore.
Over the last 12 years, Param has worn various hats — Ethnographer, Innovation Consultant, Design Manager, Usability Specialist, User Interface Designer) in companies like GE Healthcare and Sapient Corporation, across the India / USA / UK geographies. Param started his career in Usability / Human Computer Interaction for software & application design, and then specialized in Ethnography & Contextual Studies for new product & Innovation initiatives.
Param is currently Group Business Director at Probe Qualitative Research (PQR), the specialist qualitative research division of IMRB International, one of Asia’s oldest and largest market research firms. In this role, he leads a practice that’s focused on consumer-centered / people-centered Innovation, using ‘Design Thinking’ and Ethnographic Research. Most of the work he does is with organizations and innovation in their products / services / business for emerging markets like India.
Param considers himself to be a compulsive entrepreneur. Having been in jobs & roles which were entrepreneurial in nature, he eventually he started up ‘Onward Research & Innovation’, a user research & innovation consulting firm, in 2007. During Onward’s existence (a year and a half), he experienced the most frightening, yet most exciting roller coaster of his life, including a whole variety of things — from working out of coffee shops (which provided free wifi connectivity) for the first 2 months, to working on the first set of projects, to figuring out how to write a biz plan and then how (not) to pitch it to investors, to being super-confident & refusing angel funding (in the good ol’ days of a booming economy), to hiring more people (at peak, 5 employees), to speaking at events / schools / organizations, to extended workshops with clients, to getting out-of-the-world testimonials from clients half-way through the project, to eventually realizing cash-flow is a pain, and that size does matter…to eventually moving closing shop, and moving back to a job with his team, to fulfill the dream that he started with. (And, he actually hates roller coasters!)
During the course of entrepreneurship, he led a variety of consulting assignments in the Indian market — Service Design in the area of diabetes lifecycle management for a healthcare startup, Trend Analysis & Marketing Strategy for a global HR consulting firm in the Oil & Energy industry, Studying mobile phone usage among progressive youngsters in Bangalore, etc.
While at GE Healthcare earlier, he generated intellectual property (two defensive patents) based on contextual research done at several hospitals in the United States. Being the black sheep in a batch of wannabe-IIT-engineers during high school, Param managed to break away from the crowd and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Visual Communication from Loyola College, Chennai.
Param has been (not so regularly) pursuing photography as a strong passion. Street and travel photography have been his primary areas of interest. His photoblog showcases some of his photography over the years. Param plans on doing a coffee-table photobook on “Palakkad” tamil-brahmins at some point of time in his life (an excuse to actually discovering and learning about his roots)!
Despite all the craziness of the last 2 years of his life, he has now embarked on yet another roller coaster ride – Param and Shruti (his wife) are expecting their first baby in March 2009 are now proud parents of an adorable son, Aadi Parameswaran (born in April 2009)! And, in the middle of all this, he uses this blog to vent, share, introspect or just document interesting / mundane day-to-day observations in his professional & personal life.
Ph: +91 98808 29087
PS: Blog masthead conceived & illustrated by Kavita Arvind, one of THE best illustrators I know!