After serving in a number of roles across the treasury organisation, Taneja moved to Singapore, where he has been based since February 2018. In his current role he is the regional treasury leader for the Asia-Pacific markets, which includes China, ASEAN [Association of South-East Asian Nations], Australia, New Zealand and South Korea and Japan. In this role he also leads GE’s regional treasury centre in Singapore and the treasury services centre in Shanghai.
Throughout this career, working his way through GE’s treasury teams, he has had the opportunity to learn and observe how other people work. He explains to Treasury Today Asia how one of the key learnings throughout his career has been the power of perseverance. He doesn’t quote Edison, though. Rather, this is something he has come to realise from learning on the job and observing other people.
Over his career, he explains, “I have observed people and the decisions they were taking.” When he looked back and considered the key moments and critical situations where such important decisions were made, he analysed them and concluded, “They would have ended up in a much better situation if they had persevered.”
He attributes his success so far in his career to this kind of persistence. “It always pays to persevere in the long run,” he says. “It is easy to lose your cool and then when you look back at those certain moments – you see the importance of perseverance.” At times, he says, it seemed like the ‘chips were down,’ yet he pressed on. When challenges come your way, “If you approach those challenges with a bad temperament, that is when the outcomes are not optimal.” Throughout a person’s career, there may not be a linear, or consistent, path – there may be good and bad spells – but it is best to approach such challenges with an even temperament, he says.
This was experienced even in arranging this interview for Treasury Today Asia. For various reasons, it was scheduled, rescheduled, and rescheduled again, and where most of his peers would have given up and not bothered – or lost their cool – he patiently pressed on and graciously went ahead with the Zoom call.
One of the highlights for Taneja in his career so far is setting up GE’s regional treasury centre in Singapore 2018. Aside from perseverance as a key learning from his career so far, Taneja also places an emphasis on the importance of building a good team, and how leading his team has given him great satisfaction. On top of his career successes, such as setting up the regional treasury centre, Taneja is also proud of how people who have worked for him have gone on to develop their careers. “It is satisfying to see people evolve as leaders and know that you have contributed to that,” he tells Treasury Today Asia. This leads to his other key learning, or principle, that has guided his career so far: “Your personal success is determined by your team’s success. You cannot win individually,” he says.
Taneja’s Asia-Pacific treasury team supports GE’s vast businesses in the region, where GE has had a presence for more than 100 years. On top of the complexity of such a large organisation, the region also poses challenges because of the differences between each of the markets. This is one of the reasons Taneja likes his role. In fact, when asked if he likes his job, he says, “I love it!” He adds that he loves having the opportunity to learn about the region, explaining that Asia Pacific is such a heterogeneous region with each of the countries having their unique treasury challenges. “Some markets are totally restricted, others are not, and then there is everything in between. There is lots to learn from a region like this,” he says.