Naina Lal Kidwai, Country Head and Group General Manager of HSBC India, was born in 1957 in India. She is a chartered accountant by profession and an Indian banker and business executive. Since young, Naina Lal Kidwai had a keen interest in studies. Since her passion lied in Mathematics and Accountancy, she pursued a Bachelors degree in Economics from the University of Delhi, after which in 1982, she pursued an MBA from Harvard Business School, one of the leading business schools in the world.
In fact, Naina Lal Kidwai was the first Indian woman to graduate from Harvard Business School. Naina Lal Kidwai is not just an inspiration to women in India but to all youngsters. She was not afraid of challenges and she followed her heart and realized her dreams even though she was faced with obstacles and difficulties along the way.
After graduating with an MBA degree, Naina Lal Kidwai worked at ANZ Grindlays from 1982 to 1994, which has now been acquired by Standard Chartered. During her term with ANZ Grindlays, Naina Lal Kidwai served as the Head of Investment Bank, Head of Global NRI Services and Head of Western India, Retail Bank. In 1994, she moved on to Morgan Stanley India, where she served as the Head of Investment Banking.
Prestigious positions she holds
Today, Naina Lal Kidwai is not only the Chairman of HSBC Asset Management and HSBC InvestDirect for the Indian market, but she is also a non-executive director on the board of Nestle, Chairwoman at City of London’s Advisory Council for India, and Global Advisor at Harvard Business School. In addition, she is on the Governing Board of the National Council of Applied Economic Research, Audit Advisory Board and Auditor General of India, and on the National Executive Committee of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry. Naina Lal Kidwai is not just an asset to HSBC India but also to the banking and finance sector in the country. Her hard work and diligence have earned her awards and accolades in the financial sector.
Naina Lal Kidwai’s life journey is proof that hard work never goes unnoticed and fruits of hard work are sweet. For her praiseworthy work and her significant contribution to India’s banking and finance sector, Naina Lal Kidwai has been awarded Padma Shri. She also received the ASSOCHAM (Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India) Ladies League’s Delhi Women of the Decade Achievers Award for Excellence in Banking.
Naina Lal Kidwai is married with two children, and is a perfect example of an Indian woman who is able to balance both work and family life. Naina Lal Kidwai believes in the empowerment of women and enhancing the lives of Indians. So, she works closely with her husband, who is the founder of a non-governmental organisation called Grassroot Trading Network for Women, in changing the lives of the poor.
Being successful is not about earning millions; in fact, it is about contributing to the society. This is something that we can learn from Naina Lal Kidwai.