Michael Delfs

Hanna Stromgren
Brown University
Degree in International Relations & Political Economy
Mahindra Global Recruit 2013

Sector/Company: Mahindra Lifespace Developers Ltd
What are you doing now?
I worked on a number of different projects in the GSO, ranging from projects with the Sustainability, Aftermarket, Agriculture and Africa sectors. I devoted a lot of time working with the Innovation Centre of Excellence, developing new strategies and methods to improve and empower Mahindra employees, our company culture and the overall workplace. I also managed a project with Mahindra Holidays & Resorts, where I was doing strategy work related to customer profiling and targeting. I recently transitioned into the strategy team in Mahindra Lifespaces, where I work mostly within our Luxury Housing segment. I’m also on the leadership of a Community Waste Management project with our Sustainability Cell.
Career Goals: I have a few different things in mind. Currently I’m really enjoying working in the luxury segment of the real estate sector—it is an exciting space with a lot going on in this part of the world. I could see myself moving somewhere new after my two years in India, to gain some more business experience in other parts of Asia or the Middle East.
Hobbies: Interior design/architecture, wine, painting, exploring new restaurants, yoga, a good book, and people watching. I also have a thing for grocery shopping—I find it meditative and exciting at the same time.
What were you doing before you joined Mahindra?
My previous work experience is mostly within sales, marketing and the real estate sector. I also have a lot of practical experience with a wide range of jobs in the service industry. My most recent job was with a high-end event planning business in New York City where I worked as a Production Coordinator, mostly in charge of product research, buying, negotiating contracts, and event design.

Why did you decide to join Mahindra?
I was looking for a job that would give me international work experience in an emerging market, as well as a company that would value my diverse personal and professional background. I wanted to join a firm that would allow me to explore different fields of interest, and a job in the Group Strategy Office at Mahindra is the perfect opportunity to do so. And of course, I wanted to move somewhere new and challenging. The energy in Bombay is indescribable and gives you a daily rush of a different kind—both interesting and important at this time in my life.
What is it like living and working in Mumbai?
Smelly, crowded, foggy, smoggy Bombay. There is nothing I can say to give this city, country or culture the credit it deserves. I am a people person. I thrive in environments like Bombay, where my daily life involves meeting new & interesting people in a setting that can be extremely challenging and frustrating but also unbelievably beautiful and rewarding. The only disadvantage with living and working in India is that there is never enough time to do all the things you want to do—there are so many new opportunities and things to explore every single day.
Bombay isn’t easy. It can be unfair, crazy, hectic, inefficient, and loud. But what you will realize is that it’s all worth it, because of the incredible start on life it gives you. And because of how beautiful, loving, caring, bubbly, adventurous and crazy fun it is. Bombay is the most intense city I’ve ever been to. The only thing I keep asking myself is, how am I ever going to leave?
What is your favorite experience/memory in India?
Dancing down the streets throwing water and paint on Holi. A week long yoga and surf retreat in Kerala. Sufi nights in Delhi. Adopting a kitten. A weekend in rainy Lonavala. Goa weekends. Teaching at a school in the slum. Or just an early morning coffee at a shop down the street from my house. Clearly, it’s impossible to pick one.