Gaurav heads the Greenfields Team at Mundipharma International Limited, which seeks out business opportunities beyond our four focus areas. Here he gives an insight into some of the attractions of Mundipharma as an employer and Cambridge as a place to live and work:
Q: What attracted you to move to Cambridge?
A: For me, the city is the perfect hybrid. On one side it has a global reputation as a hub for life sciences, possesses a lively and intellectual atmosphere and is only 45 minutes by train to London. With this comes a real sense of community, which is quite unlike London. People here just dive in and get to know each other. For example, my wife has taken up yoga and singing classes, which are just two of the many activities available in and around the city.
Q: How would you describe the city’s character?
A: One thing that might surprise people is Cambridge’s cultural diversity. I can walk down the street and hear six different languages being spoken, which is unusual outside London and adds real character to the city. Another aspect I like is that the innovation ecosystem is more entrepreneurial and energetic. People are quicker to collaborate, and funding opportunities for the right teams are abundant. This culture obviously permeates the city as a whole.
Q: What is your favorite thing about Cambridge?
A: This has to be the riverside; it needs to be seen to be believed, especially the area behind the university buildings. After months spent watching other people making use of the river, I bought my own kayak. Now, after work, I can walk a few meters from my house and get on the river, something I have never had the freedom to do before.
Q: What do you enjoy most about working at Mundipharma International Limited?
A: I like the openness and the flat structure, which means I don’t need to jump through 50 hoops in order to speak with a decision-maker. If I have a business idea, I know I can approach someone directly – whether it’s over coffee or in one of our breakout areas – and I will be listened to. I am actively encouraged to help grow the company, take calculated risks and be part of its success.
Q: Do you have any examples of this fast decision-making that you could share?
A: I do – I recently proposed a new business idea, which followed a slightly contrarian strategy, to our Leadership Team. They quickly managed to look beyond the conventional wisdom, saw the hidden value and put it into action within just a few weeks. The company pulled out all the stops, bringing in experts from the University of Cambridge along with a number of other internal and external resources. It’s great that decisions are made quickly like this, so we avoid missed opportunities.
Q: How would you characterize the Mundipharma corporate culture?
A: It is very diverse and inclusive, which is something that permeates through all levels of management. People are responsible for their work and, as a result, they feel empowered, which I found a real breath of fresh air when I joined. There’s also a degree of openness unlike anything I have experienced before – the lack of silos means ideas can be discussed freely between departments and specialists.
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