This #WomensEqualityDay, meet the females forces empowering Builder

On August 26, 1920, the 19th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution was ratified which granted women the right to vote. This was extraordinary at the time because until then, women had been treated like second-class citizens. Thereafter, women have slowly reclaimed their full rights and privileges--public and private, legal and institutional--privileges otherwise only been available to men.

Every year on this special anniversary, the world celebrates Women’s Equality Day to remember the advancements of women since being granted the right to vote. How far women have come--and how much work is yet to be made. At Builder, because we sincerely value the role of women as leaders, we wanted to take this opportunity to highlight how much we’ve gained by having a diverse, inclusive team including women leaders, and what inspires them to grow and continue to achieve.

According to the report by the National Centre for Women and Information Technology, “Only 25% of computing jobs are held by women.” Furthermore, only 12% of engineers at Silicon Valley startups are women. Only 11% of executive positions at Silicon Valley companies are held by women. A lack of women in technology has undoubtedly impacted both performance and profits, creating missed opportunities. Research from Morgan Stanley notes, “higher gender diversity teams not only enjoyed better returns, but lower volatility.

Also, in the past five years, those companies [moderately] outperformed companies with low diversity or sector peers.” What’s more, research from the American Sociological Review concluded gender diversity is associated with increased sales revenue, more customers and greater relative profits. Cha-ching. At Builder, we’ve seen teams perform better with diverse viewpoints. Women leaders boost the general collective intelligence of the whole company which helps us stay sharp!To highlight just a few of the leaders, we interviewed five that stand out to introduce them to you. Below, discover their daily routine, success mantras and lots more.  

Archna Bhardwaj, Director of Human Capital, APAC Region

What’s a typical day like for you?

I take each day as it comes, but there are certain things that are set in my daily routine. I love to have a slow start to the day. This means as soon as the kids are off to school, it’s time for me to enjoy a cup of hot tea on my terrace garden while watching butterflies and birds fluttering around. The drive to work is the time to mentally organise the day ahead and connect with industry peers over the phone. Once in office, work and meetings dictate the schedule, but it always includes connecting and meeting people. In the evening, having dinner with my boys is a must, followed by chit-chat and fun before it’s time for some office work again. Then, I call it a day.

Who is your inspiration currently and why?

I’ve had many people inspire me. I was fortunate enough to work or observe senior leaders in corporate and government sectors alike. However, one person who has been my greatest support and inspiration is my mother. After retiring as a high school economics teacher, she continued serving the community as an elected leader of Delhi’s largest senior citizens’ club and continues to be involved with lots of charitable work through various NGOs. She has also authored a book about the core meaning of Gita (Hindu holy scripture). Her positive attitude towards life and her faith in God is something I want to imbibe.

What advice would you give to the next generation of female leaders?

To stick around and never say never! At times, it can get tough to manage both personal and professional fronts, as both require equal attention and are equally important aspects of the lives of women leaders. I have taken a few breaks in my career myself when my kids were born or when we moved to new places as a family, and each of those momentary pauses enriched me and motivated me to get back to what I enjoy most--my work.

Ridhima Gupta, Marketing Lead - India & APAC Region

Where will we find you on a Saturday morning at 10 AM?  

Cleaning my house!

Who is your inspiration currently and why?

Nayirrah Waheed's work. She writes amazing and highly relatable poetry. The poems make you take a second look at your life and everything you do. If I had to name a person, though, then JK Rowling. She has achieved so much and has created an exemplary world through stories which has inspired me.

If you had to start over from scratch, knowing what you know now, what would you do differently?

I’d spend less time cleaning! Hah.

What advice would you give to the next generation of female leaders?

Never doubt yourself. Everyone, no matter at which stage in life, is figuring things out. Some just might seem more confident while doing it. Listen to people who have done what you’re doing currently because if nothing else, they definitely know at least a little more than you regarding the situation.

Anju Chaudhary, Director Sales - Enterprises and Alliances

What is your role at Builder?

I head the sales for Builder platform here in India.

What’s a typical day like for you?

I often start early, and the day usually begins with looking into my calendar and CRM for follow ups, spending one half to a full hour with the team, and then day-to-day activities like speaking to clients, showcasing a product demo and strategizing on key performance metrics, for example.

Where will we find you on a Saturday morning at 10AM?  

This is the most difficult of all the other questions because with a 3 year-old,  there is no straight answer. Usually, around 10AM, either we’d either be playing together or I’d be pleading him to eat something healthy.

How do you motivate yourself and stay motivated?

I have been working for close to 13 years now. Luckily, I have always worked with the best possible bosses. Hence, I never really felt any special need for additional motivation. Having worked with different industries from technology to finance--there was never monotony. Here at Builder, we believe everyone should be empowered to unlock their true potential in being a builder, irrespective of what they know, what they have, and what they are afraid of. I know this is a strong statement, but when you have the power to change people's lives around you, you really do not need an extra dose of motivation. Just the feeling itself keeps you motivated.

Priyanka Kochhar, Senior Product Manager

What is your role at Builder?

I am the Product Manager for an internal platform (Builder360) used by our Customer Delivery Experts and help simplify project execution through automation.We use automation to source the best available Creators from our Capacity Network (automatically based on rating, experience, ability and cost) for tailor-made feature delivery not available in a modular code library.We also use automation to build modular features. For example, automating feature status reports on the platform instead of manual reports, auto internal alert systems if a project is heading into risks well before the actual release date so necessary action can be taken, auto notifying customer at all stages of delivery for transparency and overall providing our valued customers assurance are some of the key features available on the platform.We believe that collaboration and accountability are the two main ingredients that drive project success and we have tried to incorporate them in all our platform for products delivery --(customer focused delivery automation).Most of my teams’ (on Builder360) stack today is automation & statistical in its’ nature. The decision trees we have built create a strong path to a learned model; and our roadmap on this is already in development.  

Who is your inspiration currently and why?

Sachin Duggal, our CEO is my inspiration and yes, not trying to lie here. There is so much to learn from him and the way he manages everything--he works around the clock, ensures every vertical is performing well and most of all because he treats his employees like family. His principles and vision are super clear and well, he has reasons to sit back, taste the success and be proud of himself--yet he won't stop because he already has set a higher goal for himself.

How do you motivate yourself and stay motivated?  

I am a self motivator and my work keeps me motivated to perform better than the previous day. I try to learn from my mistakes, get feedback from my peers and try to understand the gap so I can mitigate it.

What advice would you give to women trying to break into engineering and technology fields?

One piece of advice: don’t hesitate and be game for challenges! I was an Android Engineer when I entered Builder and was added to Customer Delivery team as a Project Manager, became a lead, tasted Director level and served our customers for 3 long years before finally heading product for Customer Delivery. All of this happened because I never said "no" and was always up for the challenges and exciting opportunities given to me. It can be a rollercoaster ride, but trust me, most of your memories will be from those experiences!

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