#OneInABillion: Professional football player, coach, Kirana partner – Noah Rozario is unbeatable

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Noah Augustine Rozario is a man of many talents. Store-owner, tailor, security supervisor, professional football player, and coach — Noah has done it all. But for him, what really counts is who he is as a person and the difference that his work truly makes. Read his inspiring story to learn how he scores a brace, and then some, in life!

I  almost lost my leg to an amputation.

I started playing football when I was 6. More than a hobby, it was and continues to be my passion. I have represented Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and our country in various competitions in the past. Today, I am a football coach and train two teams for state and national-level competitions.

But it wasn’t a smooth journey when I was trying to break into this career.

I wasn’t selected while trying to score a place in the Under-16 category. At the time, my father asked me to look for work instead – so that I could stay occupied and fend for myself. I had just completed SSLC and started work as a mechanic. Even while working other jobs, I had football going on the side, playing with my friends. Gradually, I tried my hand at tailoring, fabrication work, security officer and supervisor, and then came my breakthrough in professional football.

I was spotted by a team captain of a major league in India during an off-season match. I was 27. He asked me to join the team but I was skeptical because I had my job. He motivated me to do both. This is when I picked up the skill to manage my day job and my passion effectively. I set realistic goals and was transparent about it to my employer and my team captain.

Back when I was playing professional football, I had an accident. One of the members from the opposing team ran into me causing an injury to my leg. Things could have gotten worse, if I hadn’t received proper treatment. But luckily, I was able to heal. I had to stop playing for a long time before coming back as a coach.

Kirana Partner

I was then working as a coach at a school in Bengaluru on a contract basis. All was well until the lockdown happened. The contract employees experienced a severe pay cut and we had to look for alternative ways to manage our expenses. This was when I happened to talk to a friend of mine, who is also working as a Flipkart Kirana Partner at a hub here. I have a small stationery store so I enlisted for the program too. The onboarding process was extremely smooth and I got in right away.

Today, even after schools have reopened and my coaching sessions are going strong, I don’t intend to leave my Kirana work behind because Flipkart stood by me when I needed support and now I choose to stand by Flipkart.

My schedule today looks like this: I start early in the morning coaching one of my school teams, which ends by 8:30 am. By 9 am, I am in the Flipkart hub, collecting the packages for the day. Right after that I leave for my store. I reach around 9:45 am, I segregate the packages and plan my deliveries accordingly. I have a set number of deliveries that I know I can do realistically. I always follow that. By 2:30 pm, I make sure that I achieve my targets and then head to my next school for the evening coaching session.

When I started work as a Kirana Partner, there were naysayers in my family. But now, many of them come to me asking about applying for it.

I live with my family in Bengaluru. My wife is a Senior Manager at an IT company. She also helps me with the store whenever she can. I have two daughters. The eldest is working in the UAE and my youngest is in school. My eldest daughter is a state-level throwball player and my youngest, well, she is a foodie!

I deliver in my area and most of my customers are also my acquaintances. I have known them for years. This makes it easy for me to do my deliveries, but yes, there are times when customers may not be available due to personal reasons and that affects my flow of work. But regardless, I manage to take care of these pending deliveries.

The Big Billion Days Sale season is amazing! I try to deliver as many packages as I can. At my hub, everyone is extremely supportive. We are well-guided and during this time we usually have many newcomers. The work culture here is such that we always pass on the knowledge from our own experiences to our juniors so that they can do their job as seamlessly as possible.

More than job titles, what matters the most to me is who I am at this moment and how my work adds value to my life. And right now, both professions – as a coach and a Kirana Partner – are helping me evolve into my current version. I am grateful for that.

Also Read: #OneInABillion: With Flipkart, Ranjan Kumar is reviving long-lost dreams

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