Customer Empathy & Wonderment with Tech led to Executive’s Success with Customers
Speakers: Sirisha Peyyeti, Head – ESG (Digital Engineering Services)
Interviewer: Coruzant Technologies
Here is the Transcript
Host: Welcome to Corizont Technologies, home of the digital Executive Podcast. Welcome to the Digital Executive. Today’s guest is Sirisha Peyyeti. Sirisha Peyyeti is the co-founder and head of digital engineering consulting. Sirisha is a business leader with over 20 years of experience in the IT services industry. Focused in the area of data and analytics, she is experienced in solution consulting with a strong focus on digital thinking and customer empathy across varied domains and customer base. Sirisha being a woman entrepreneur is considered a problem solver. Having good exposure to different technology stacks throughout her career coupled with common sense help deliver digital transformation projects. Well, good afternoon, Sirisha. Welcome to the show.
Sirisha: Thank you, Brian. Pleasure being here today.
Host/Brian: This is awesome. Thanks again for jumping on so late in your day. I know that you’re chatting from the great country of India, and of course, our time differences sometimes make it challenging. So, I appreciate you jumping on. Sirisha, let’s jump into the questions here. You’ve got quite the background in technology services. Could you share with our audience what drives you and what has contributed to your success?
Sirisha: Yeah, you know what? To be very very honest, I don’t think I had a plan when I started. I did not know where I wanted to be. But, yeah, I guess I kind of gravitated to where I am today. I was very lucky. In the initial stages of my career, I worked with a company which was in a high-growth path. What that gave me is advantage of learning at breadth. Of course, there is interest and intent to understand and do a lot of good stuff from a technology standpoint on the data side. But then what the atmosphere gave me rather was an ability to experiment and you know learn a lot of things and how they work in tandem. If I would basically say one thing that kind of contributed to my success from a career point of view, I would probably call it the wonderment or fascination towards what’s happening in the tech space. Yeah, that’s something that’s led me to learn, believe in trying out new things and of course, having an empathy to the customer. We work in a services industry, which means there’s a whole bunch of problems that the customers are kind of dealing with. You need to understand that problem better. It’s not about being wedded to a technology, right? It’s about being able to empathize with the customer and the problem statement and use the tech to get that work done. So, yeah, two things that I would say kind of contributed to letting me be where I am today is that wonderment and fascination towards technology and empathy with the customer.
Host: Awesome. I appreciate you sharing that. That is unique in some ways, how you address customer issues with a certain amount of empathy and passion for your work. So I appreciate that and Sirisha, as you know, the big one here, everybody around the world has had to make these major shifts to adapt to this new normal. Could you share with us what you’re doing to help your organization stay relevant in this economy?
Sirisha: Yes. The shortest answer to that, Brian, is by being more tolerant. Everyone’s going through a crazy crazy time. So, yeah, we’re not trying to jump to conclusions. We’re not trying to use the regular process and approach to either addressing the customer issues or the employee issues that we have today. We’re trying to be a lot more tolerant about how we’re dealing with work on a day-to-day basis. But that said, we’ve been extremely lucky to continue to work with our existing set of customers and added a few new ones along the way too, during all these stuff types. But, yeah, one thing that I think we’re helping do right is by focusing relentlessly on what needs to be absolutely done. So there were times in our industry where people were, and by people, I mean services companies or technologists or whoever you want to call them, developers, were very keen about doing everything and anything. But right now, what we’re focusing on as a company, and that’s what is resonating well with our customers is cutting out on all the additional bells and whistles, doing whatever is absolutely necessary for the customer, which eventually translates to building trust, right? And then kind of work doubly hard there. It might sound very cliche, but one thing that we kind of saw through this calamity is a lot of opportunity as well. We’ve spent a lot of time doing some sort of a pro bono work with hospitals in India during the pandemic. So far it’s resulted in a couple of prizes and paper presentations and of course, a lot of satisfaction. Hopefully, it will also translate into some grants, money, and commercial projects in the future. But, yeah, we’ve been adapting to the way the world is reeling with this right now and dealing with it along the way.
Host: Thank you for sharing. And you’re absolutely right. A lot of people have really bent over backwards and offered various services at either deeply discounted or free to help each other during this time. And in the end, trust, as you said, is going to be the way that people will get back into business and help each other out. So thanks again and Sirisha, you’re obviously leveraging some new and emerging technologies in your tech stack. Is there anything you could share with our audience today?
Sirisha: Again, if there is one thing that I want the audience to take away from this conversation, it is basically not to use everything that is bright and shiny out there for every and any problem, right? So, if you are serious about leveraging the new and emerging technologies, you need to be very cautious about using technology as an enabler. Our chief data scientist says 80% of the ML problems today can still be solved using logistic regression, but people are extremely keen on using neural networks for everything. So, yeah, I guess what we need to be consciously doing is try and figure out what is the right thing to do for that right problem. And of course, continuously on a regular basis allocate time to learn new stuff and see where it kind of fits in the bigger scheme of things. So, so yeah please focus on the problem and not on the tech that will solve the problem.
Host: Great. think that’s some awesome advice. And you’re right, I see that all the time in Sirisha. I interview a lot of tech CEOs from around the world, including Silicon Valley, and sometimes it is the shiny new object that people think we need to apply to a problem, and that’s not always the case. So thank you. Sirisha, can you share something from your career experience that would be helpful for those looking to grow their career in tech or entrepreneurship?
Sirisha: Yeah. So you know what, Brian? I guess while there’s a lot of new stuff that’s happening in the tech world and it’s all exciting, it’s all great stuff, I think from a human race point of view, what is happening is we’re all losing patience. We’re always looking at quick wins, right? So I guess what we need to be doing as technologists, whether you’re working for a company, you’re building that new product, or you’re looking at entrepreneurship, what we need to do is be, of course, a lot more bold.
We should be open to change and like Satya Nadala says, have that growth mindset. But again, the one big thing that we should very be clearly aware of is have an ability to be a lot more broader in our understanding of the tech landscape. Yes, you need to have that depth. If you are looking at becoming a data scientist, for example, you need to spend the rest of your time focusing on that. But that doesn’t mean you should get siloed. You should be aware of what’s happening with how this model is going to be around, consumed, how is the data for this model coming in et cetera, et cetera. You might not have to build everything, but you should be aware of that. So any aspect of the tech that you choose, it doesn’t matter whether you want to be this versus that. In our company, if there’s one thing that we tell our young blood that joins the company, we tell them a mobile developer or a full stack developer or whoever it is, is in as much demand as a data scientist. Yes, there are articles that say data scientist is the most lucrative job out there, et cetera, et cetera. That might be true, but world actually needs serious coders and you’ve got to be one. You’ve got to be a serious coder and whatever branch or stream that you choose. And if you build that depth in one thing and build that breadth across the spectrum, you’re all set for a great entrepreneurship on the technology side. Absolutely set for your life.
Host: Thank you for sharing Sirisha, that’s amazing. I think that will give some inspiration and some insight to those looking at their current career or looking to transition into tech or entrepreneurship. So thank you. And Sirisha, it was a pleasure having you today. I look forward to speaking with you real soon. Thank you. It was absolutely terrific talking to you.
Sirisha: Thank you Brian.
Host: Bye for now.