Hi everyone thank you all for joining this next episode of how to who the secret of success. Today we are joined by Anuradha Chowdipura a friend of mine even to the same engineering school she’s a very happy and charming person you will see that during this podcast. Anu is a Visionary and proven technology leader in the tech space with the you know of 20 plus years of experience in strategy implementation sustainability hiring etcetera I didn’t I mean multiple leadership patch she is warm in that career HR legal the corporate communications and so on but you know she is in an engineer computer engineer at heart and her expertise is how do you help scale a company build high functioning teams and how do you make sure that like your high you could imagine that such personality but she’s also a part of a women intuitive network and also a board member also she is the co founder and co chair of the women in information technology welcome to our broadcast Anu it’s great to have you here.
Anuradha Chowdipura : (1.25-1.39)
Thank you Giri thanks so much and I’m so excited just I think it’s just the best way to start a Friday morning. I mean it’s not. Looking forward to the weekend so this is just the right thing great
Giri Devanur : (1.39-1.47)
can you please tell us a little bit about yourself your background where you are now what you are doing.
Anuradha Chowdipura : (1.47-5.00)
Sure you know maybe I’ll pick it up after we left college then you were there so you know got my computer science degree and I decided to teach there for a year for 2 reasons one I love teaching and teaching training whatever that is and then I also was waiting to get into a MBA program So if you know in India if you don’t start the program until you get your exam results so I had to kind of spend that one year. Then I went on to do my MBA from the university of Mysore. Though I really wanted to do specialize in HR my university had this rule you have to have at least 5 people to opt for an elective.
Otherwise we cannot and I was the only one in the classes that I want to do HR. Which was kind of odd so then they said either I have finance or marketing then i said i will do marketing. Now I Finished MBA and that that’s one of my proud moments because I topped the university gold medalist and none of those things mean anything today back at that moment it was a proud moment. After that you know we moved to bangalore by then I was married and then we moved to bangalore that was my very first job one of my favorite jobs I started working for a pharma startup. Actually this was a company more than a startup this is a company which had which was closed down for a environmental reasons and after several years a new management came took over and started providing the company and I became part of strikes. I was and I had a fantastic role probably my dream role i would say I was responsible for corporate operations think of computer science and me getting into corporate operations I loved it. And I really didn’t put any of my IT or computer skills to use but I totally loved that role. And I was like the youngest out of the block there I was just out of college. We’ll get a lot of okay what’s this young girl doing. On the scale and complex anyway and two years later I had my son.
And on that thing my husband decided to come to US because he got into it. I have I was planning to take a break but I’m like. I never ever thought I would leave India and coming to any other country anymore right but this happened I was like talking to one of my colleagues at work and I still remember him today he gave me a very good advice he said anyway you are planning to take a break after the baby and it’s not like you’re going to come back to work right after why do you use this as an opportunity to explore the country you feel like it you stay there otherwise just come back okay that was the intention with which I cited the back right go ahead and get I I’m 25 years.
Giri Devanur : (5.00-5.16)
So you know those kind of transformational pivots right of life. What are the biggest challenges that are faced in tech especially you know the business and tech.
Anuradha Chowdipura : (5.16-6.38)
yeah. I think the cultural barriers. The expectations what is the appropriate thing in one culture may not be appropriate in the other so everybody takes time that is that I’m I’m at the back right those are the challenges but people who really do well are the people who come with an open mind set. They have to be open right I don’t think I was when I initially came I was very rigid I always had things and I gave guru my husband has been a hard. I have nothing to do yeah this is not part of my plan.
But slowly but surely and all I started opening up. That was I think the beginning of my growth right if you you are set in a particular thing you think this is going to go but that is not how life is that is not how reality is if that if there is one thing we can all be taught from the time you get into kindergarten is that. You know you’re going to school but today’s something might be there on that road it might be blocked right what do you do what are the details.
Giri Devanur : (6.38-7.04)
Okay. Yes. You know you moved to Silicon Valley and New. Those days is not yeah I mean even today the number of women engineers in in our company is decimal right. What what are the biggest challenges for women in tech you know like including my own daughter like many people wouldn’t want to even get into computer engineering part of it.
Anuradha Chowdipura : (7.04-8.27)
Yeah. There are you know couple of all of us want to say that the challenges have is that because it’s external right and it does the ecosystem or we are not accepted and yes there are those but I think that is all I always also I like to see how we are contributing to the problem or how we are not helping solve the problem or how can we help solve. It’s like you know do you need to have its from both sides. And it starts at home right okay you or me or my thinking was little different. We were told you girls can go into anything even let’s say I chose to do mechanical engineering there will be anybody in my house we are in good why do you want to do mechanically but even to this day I see we are like an organic basis and should be all that is not something maybe that is what your brother should be doing right it’s nothing does change so it starts at home and so women come with their own stereotype that’s one thing and that is projected on to the society too right. What what is happening at home and what was happening bring meaning is brought into the work place.
Giri Devanur : (8.27-8.32)
So you know actually that leads to a interesting question what makes a good leader then.
Anuradha Chowdipura : (8.32-10.38)
What makes a good leader you know many have many ask me this but I am reminded of the school recently and when you talk to a manager. She. It feels like he or she is mark. But when you talk to your leader or when you talk to a leader. You feel I am important. So the best leaders are the leaders I have looked up to or people who inspired you. People who bring the best out of you right.
Do you focus on your strengths they exactly know to pickup when you are second guessing yourself. You know what what did I see that they have the ability to. Our strength and help you grow through that right that to me is what a true leader is then leaders develop other leaders Leaders you know who yes you know all of this work hard to get to a place right. But don’t hold on to that our.
In the whole thing at the back of my mind that for me that is very important you know I’m going to be so disappointed in myself if I don’t help others. I want to be there okay fine now it’s time for me to step down. Have I In the process to help others take on and have I made sure that our success that is an another thing and. Lastly but the most important thing for me is somebody with the integrity. Integrity this is the best definition of integrity I have like I think they did yes defined in henry cloaks book integrity. Somebody will makes everything brings everything together makes everything possible. Irrespective of How complicated the situation is. You invest in those types of people right. So to me that’s what I look for in.
Giri Devanur : (10.38-11.07)
So you know you actually touched many areas in that answer right. All of them should lead to a fair competition right we have seen repeatedly that. women are not being paid equally for the same job in the Male versus female almost like a old boys club kindof right. What. Why does that happen and how do we beat that bias
Anuradha Chowdipura : (11.07-12.28)
right I really wish I could give you the answers like a formula its really not that easy because the reason is very deep rooted and its centuries old all right I keep thinking about this so think of those days where it was all about physically but I and then they said men can do this women and women have always been considered as a week sex it started off with his with his. At that time if somebody’s stock I that may not remain and said okay let’s line up ten men. And see all the ten men have the same strength. Can all the ten men life 250 pounds no right.
I don’t know if people ask the question then what do you do when 10 men can’t lift use okay this person be put in in this category okay who can lift 250 pounds this person can only lift 150 pounds right. Why is the comparison between gender why don’t you compare us human beings okay this person can do this okay give them that. Now We have evolved the physical labor is kind of it’s become more like mental thing right mental ability. But that she does not have.
Giri Devanur : (12.28-12.33)
Very interesting I did not think from that I mean you know you are right now you struck sanction.
Anuradha Chowdipura : (12.33-13.26)
Right but I I want to ask the same question are all the same you all have the same mental and emotional intelligence emotional awareness mental ability even in my own home right right yes because we sisters are stronger in a way that my brother who’s more soft hearted who is more homely go getters. So. I think that is the root cause of this whole bias because of that and we have not made a shift and then also again I come back to this. Women also I have seen night they also smart. Yeah I have worked with so smart. Why do we hesitate in negotiating . Why do we lower ourselves.
Giri Devanur : (13.26-13.41)
See you know like What I’ve seen is women don’t formally get trained in negotiation I think you know that is where the challenge is they don’t know where to start they think you know asking something is a bad idea
Anuradha Chowdipura : (13.41-14.23)
right absolutely that’s why you know those are backed by a lot is happening now and I locked it so bad that auto group I’m not with that what I just said is more like philosophical coming to the more pragmatic side of close legislation it’s just like you you see words like dont liter dont liter. Do people take it seriously only when you say. Thousands in order to best enforcement you’re like oh I’m not going to be so legislation helps so it has to be tackled from a lot of different anchors right and it is happening. What is it it has to happen and then I also want to say that each one of the several right if we want if we always expect someone else to do it it’s never going to happen it’s both top down and bottom.
Giri Devanur : (14.23-15.19)
Very interesting you know Yeah. So switching gears a little bit about our new podcast right which is how to who the secret of success yeah the origin of this was about. Whenever an opportunity or a risk is presented it we are all in our sub conscious level our ego triggers how do I resolve it how do I handle those kind of issues in. and overcoming the ego is the hardest challenge for all the human being and harder for men women are more probable you know EQ driven like I think it is probably easier for women to deal with the ego but for men and it’s very hard what is your take on this.
Anuradha Chowdipura : (15.19-16.45)
First of all you know this whole how to who is a great concept I just have to commend you for that and so there are stages of this right so in your early career stages whether its a male or a female what what is your goal right it’s about survival and how does that happen you want to impress people. I don’t know if at that point ego is there right the only way you can do is you want to be a problem solver because you know You can beat. It’s okay to a certain extent because you need that to launch yourself. From that point let’s see your growth oriented. Then you cannot keep putting your hat in the ring to solve every problem if you you can scale but there are people don’t people wife manage and they have said I’m happy where I am. Right I just want to throw it all problematic I will solve and all that motivates needs money just give them money okay they’re they’re totally happy but you know when the comes a problem if somebody wants to scale they want to they have big dreams but they also cannot consent they cannot collaborate. They can not think of forming a board of directors then you just can’t scale.
Giri Devanur : (16.45-16.58)
So,that leads to like my next question.About mentors right getting that right who is your mentor and what is the one of the one biggest thing that you learn from them.
Anuradha Chowdipura : (16.58-20.30)
I have a long list of formal and informal mentors every time in recent but for me one little thing you learn even by observing a person to me I would consider that person as a mentor however if I have to name one person was my mentor it’s my fourth grade teacher. Who interestingly. All I would like my dad was a big mentor my aunt was. Read back you know and this is one person I would you like on honour.
I was A good student you know I was kind of an over achiever fourth grade I would finish everything much before everybody else in class and then I would kind of and I’m an extrovert right then I’ll go around looking I don’t think you do you need help solving this problem and some kids like some get spent in doing so the generals in this I’m talking about so many years ago and you know you I mean you had to have these kinds. But she saw that in me and then she said can i talk to your parents can they come and see me I thought I’m in big trouble this is going to throw me out of class.
Yeah my dad came in that they had a conversation and she told my dad that I see these special abilities your daughter has and this is you know the only easy peasy stuff but I really want her to get some more stuff so she is engaged so she wrote down a few books I could read and things like that like fun things and my dad you know he was very happy and supported me all along but this is one incident i really liked. I don’t know how she realized this potential loss she was just challenging me and I’m from mysore and there is a local.
And then the last time I saw but she saw this intercollege debate competition she came and told me I think you should participate I am destined for right and they give you 24 hours to prepare for this. She didn’t read the fine print it was for college students she just saw debate competition she saw the topic and he said this you have because my dad helped me I’d go that I’m like this tiny girl and all these college people out of it it’s all good was organized by rotary and they do this annually they see me and then look what are you are here for the storytelling competition I’m like no I’m here for this debate competition I’m speaking for. This suject okay then they didnt know what to say because you’ve come and youve prepared we give you an opportunity to go on stage and speak however you know you won’t be in the in line okay I didn’t I did really well for a fourth grade and I did it then the organizer they said when you get into eleventh grade come back because In india eleventh and twelfth is considered as college yand I didn’t I never forgot that I mean I as it did my colleague engines school and won trophies but the reason I consider her my mentor is she saw that and she guided me through. what I learned from that is. You will need to find that energy in people and channel it. Everybody has something to offer right but a true leader or mentor is somebody who sees that and channels it in the right direction.
Giri Devanur : (20.30-20.59)
That’s great that’s a great wonderful experience you got early on in life yeah that leads to like one of the things that we do as part of the podcast is to discuss one movie and you. Yeah. Is one of my favorite movies and Its Very emotional movie right what part of that but what made you like that movie
Anuradha Chowdipura : (22.11-23.44)
Yeah so what one was that bad she stays you know that brings out that and she just knew to ask one publicist question you know I always admired people who can come up with the powerful questions I am still learning and open and then when she was going through the grades of whatever she picks on that which everybody else had missed she says. He scored high in protective instincts and how she used that to.
Make him a better person every time I’m in on the feet he was like he didn’t know what he was doing and I’ve been using them all this is like your family she knew how to catch that onto making a better person. So she in in her thing in her role what came up is on it. Mentorship coaching empathy listening like a leader she herself whenever she would go back and reflect we did I do this right. And when she she was always listening and I think people and she stood up for the right thing.
All these qualities we really want to see the leader was demonstrated so well. That that is one of the reasons why I picked and a lot of times you know I believe in that right everybody has something to offer. He doesn’t agree that. And that was so well demonstrated in that movie. So that’s that’s why I think that will be.
Giri Devanur : (23.44-23.49)
Very insightful analysis of the movie maybe you can become a movie critic
Anuradha Chowdipura : (23.49-23.59)
no I have not and you know and I had to do this.we all watch movie for entertainment Ever thought of it in this way.
Giri Devanur : (23.59-24.27)
Yeah you know the core lesson in that movie is things will get better as long as you don’t give up that is the core theme of that movie see we are entering a chaotic face in the tech world where valuations are crashing you know the center they need to use very high and you are seeing all the stuff in the last few days of all the crypto world any take on that tech and you are in the Silicon Valley.
Anuradha Chowdipura : (24.27-25.46)
You know I wouldn’t want to say yes you know blindly say okay as long as you don’t give up. You’ll you’ll be fine that’s good. But the give up definition is kind of what we need to really pay attention right I of many years ago I read this once again this book called blind sight. Learn and read and that’s the story of very gut wrenching right. So yes you know we we say okay this is going to be the thing I won’t give up I won’t give up I think you like well you don’t have your antenna you don’t be looking at things that are happening in one. That’s when you went to be like you might have to do it they might have me and then there might be times where you have to let go of things it’s not just working it is frustrating it’s disappointing all that is bad all this was my dream date. But if it’s not that that’s when you have to make a judgment. So do not give up to me has a different connotation how do you reinvent yourself to still stay current well that one gives you not giving up means you know like
Giri Devanur : (25.46-26.06)
I didn’t see what happens is in all the episodes at some moment the core theme of a podcast comes the I think you know you you hit it here. Don’t give up reinvent that’s going to be the title of this podcast
Anuradha Chowdipura : (26.06-26.53)
yeah you know that’s what I did like you know I I I ideally wanted to make a career hit chart or corporate operations I had no idea I would come when I come when I came here that is that was not what I could get into so I had to fall back on my computer science because I liked it you know I you know I mean I do have other things which I am like more at the edge of my chair trying to do. But but I always didn’t lose that thing off what I’m truly passionate. I like to work with people. Great so that’s what I mean by finding happiness in what you do the joy what you do and constantly trying to lean.
Giri Devanur : (26.53-27.11)
So. See that is the beginning of going back to the mind set thing that I do not like the mention and not giving up in our system to set up but actually it is a quarter of the peak performance mindset yeah yeah. Done anything around achieving that level of peak performance.
Anuradha Chowdipura : (27.11-27.20)
We do right this is my manthra. Don’t let perfection be the enemy of the good
Giri Devanur : (27.20-27.23)
Alright that’s a good one
Anuradha Chowdipura : (27.23-28.29)
Think excellent not perfection and be it all even the night let’s say I go to buy a strand of. Right I always look for those things which look more real. Those are fake toss got kind of thing which is not something I can do right sh so that is what a it is leave people to be thor true authentic side if you’re always admitting them this is not good this is not good this got me thinking and you cannot be you are being that diminishes that there is one other book which really had a big impact on me as multipliers. All right that is exactly what that will be talked about and and I did with certain things that I need to say okay these are my growth ADS I’ve been there I’ve done this oh my god I didn’t know that this is how it was coming. Right it’s not about beating this forsaken large team or anything it’s about how can you multiply the talent you have already.
Giri Devanur : (28.29-28.39)
That’s great so the couple of quick fire questions. If you had to hire One last person who would that be
Anuradha Chowdipura : (28.39-28.54)
I know you know it’s I want to say harry potter. You can come with his magic boom and then. All those are gone only one problem yeah right.
Giri Devanur : (28.54-29.00)
Can you suggest you know one person one cool person that in a we can interview in our podcast
Anuradha Chowdipura : (29.00-29.34)
How about Charlie Chaplin. Jokes apart I was just person even. Person comes to mind is Charlie Jack Schmitt I actually I can give you a long list of people I didn’t think about you. We see either however back. I would like to recommend another woman was somebody will admire and you know her Bannu krishnamoorthy think. I think she would be great
Giri Devanur : (29.34-29.49)
all right I will talk to her up a couple of years so that’s great she lives next door. I know any final advice for that audience who are planning to bring some great companies of the future.
Anuradha Chowdipura : (29.49-31.19)
Yes I do see whenever we think about a startup or building the company. What almost become synonymous with building an app but an IT company the next Facebook or in that range what what I would need like the challenge entrepreneurs is something more sustainable and affordable which is more closer to nature and closer to the common person and. I I often think about all this genetically modified and now we need to be paid for drinking water right okay maybe when I can or what about. People can afford okay so if we can come up with it or launch these companies are initiated. Which can help the common person I think that the soul fulfilling and let’s say if technology is good and how we can use technology to do that technology is great but how we can we can leverage technology if not every entrepreneur everyone these are building a company should always have some percent 10 to 20 percent off their effort revenue of any work ever set aside to do this kind. The sustainability that that’s what I will do you know all of this have something to give back well so we can leave a much better environment and ecosystem of the generations to come.
Giri Devanur : (31.19-31.48)
All right that was a wonderful conversation I might really thank you for this I love that you know don’t give up reinvent that’s going to be the title of this episode. Thank you very much thank you for talking to you thank you all this was a wonderful conversation with anu like share and subscribe to our podcast how to who the secret of success thank you all.