Credited as she is with being a transformational leader, it's perhaps not surprising that Preeti Mascarenhas' self-professed favourite quote is inspired by Optimus Prime, the leader of the shape-shifting benevolent robots in the Transformers franchise.
"My team is my weapon and together we can transform and roll," Mascarenhas says. Although this isn't an exact quote from the formidible leader of the Autobots (he simply exhorts his crew to "Transform and roll out"), it's apt that Mascarenhas takes inspiration from a leader typically portrayed as having outstanding moral character, strong decision-making skills, an excellent tactical mind and genuine concern for those under his charge.
Mascarenhas, vice president and national head of strategy and product at Mindshare India, won the Women Leading Change of the Year award in the 2020 Women Leading Change Awards. This special award is given to an inspiring woman who has made a significant and long-term business contribution to creating smarter and more inclusive working environments.
Mindshare credits Mascarenhas with enhancing the morale, performance, and motivation of employees, and inspiring change driven by a strong purpose. She has helped create a culture of trust and innovation within the organisation. Her specific accomplishments include successfully spearheading the implementation of adaptive planning, which involves harnessing live data feeds to inform collaborative decision making at every step of the marketing process.
Where Optimus has artillery guns and beam weapons, Mascarenhas' primary weapon is analytics, and she has driven a large number of projects focused on harnessing data to deliver on client objectives. She has forged big data partnerships with Social Cops, How India Lives and IBM weather; enhanced targeting through tie-ups with mobile and app experts InMobi and LifeSight; and driven multiple qualitative and quantitative research studies.
All of the above points to how highly Mascarenhas values adaptability. Adaptation is a tricky and risky business, however. It takes bravery and shrewd judgement to adapt effectively. Mascarenhas is credited with making decisions with a clear focus on the values, vision, objectives, and goals of the organisation. She has the ability to take calculated risks and trust her instincts, using the intelligence gathered by her team members.
In addition to driving transformation at Mindshare, Mascarenhas also mentors business-school students in media.