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STEM Story: Vilasini Sainath

What was a pivotal choice in your career journey?

“When I decided to pursue project management instead of pursuing development like most of my colleagues. This definitely was a pivotal choice because it quickly gave me the exposure to the risk evaluation, decision making, and strategic aspect of leadership. I learned to manage up and across the organization using influence even though I didn't have authority. "

How has the technology industry changed over the past 20 years?

“Smartphone technology, I believe, has truly transformed the technology industry by leveling the playing field for companies of all sizes and maturity.”

Describe your current profession

“I am currently managing several strategic, multi-year, transformational initiatives for the marketing division of VMWare. Ensuring compliance while growing through mergers and acquisitions is a challenge that is faced by my organization presently and I am playing a very strategic role by being in the midst of enabling business goals while managing privacy and compliance risks.”

How have you made a difference in the community through your work, both at work and personally?

“At work, I have been conducting brown bags and training workshops for several functional groups spread across the globe to educate them about the privacy processes and risks from exposure. In my personal community, I am mentoring a group of students on an island educating them about our culture and deepening their roots into intelligent living.”

What is a major challenge you’ve overcome in your career journey?

“The balance between being a mother of two and a full time ambitious career has been and continues to be the greatest challenge.”

Does your background influence your day to day or broader work in any way? How?

“Yes, I definitely do. My background of benign a systematic thinker and executing a major undertaking in phases has been a great benefit to my career in program management.”

What was the most important piece of advice you’ve received?

“Focus on the purpose, and always be clear on the purpose. Let the purpose drive your genuine needs and carve out the steps you take towards your future”. This advice keeps me grounded every single day as I constantly remind myself of the why behind what I'm doing."

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