“Diversity and inclusion are two key factors for the growth of any organisation. We’ve been really fortunate to have strong women representation in the founding team itself. That’s been, I think, a key strength as well as a differentiator for us,” says Anita Kishore adding, “With 33 percent women representation on the board, about 50 percent in the top management, and 40 percent across the organisation overall, we are setting new benchmarks for the industry.”
In the sixth episode of ConsisTENt — a series where we feature BYJUites who have been instrumental in shaping the way students learn — Anita Kishore, our Chief Strategy Officer, sheds light on her decade-long journey of building and scaling BYJU’S learning app.
A teacher at heart, Anita’s foray into the edtech sector and BYJU’S is closely linked to her passion for teaching and the desire to create an impact. She tells us, “I have been teaching ever since middle school. Starting with the kids in my neighbourhood, age no bar, subject no bar, language no bar… And that’s something I continued doing throughout my college days.”
Even now, the best part of her week is when she is able to take some time out and teach. “When there was an opportunity to actually teach and make an impact on tens of thousands back then and billions of kids today, jumping on to the opportunity was really a no brainer,” quips Anita.
What started with BYJU’S learning app is today a mission driving thousands of professionals to create the best of learning tools and products. As Anita says, “We started BYJU’S for all the right reasons. It wasn’t at a time when startups or education or technology was really hot as a sector. We started this to make an impact on the way kids learn. And there can be nothing more satisfying than that.”
In building BYJU’S learning app as a go-to platform for students across the globe, there have been several factors along the way which played a big role. Sports being at the top of this list. It has not only served her with vital lessons but also role models for life.
“If I had to pick one role model,” she quips, “it would be Roger Federer. Federer has taught me a lot, everything from humility to grace and determination to the sheer perfection in every shot that he attempts. I also strongly believe that everybody I interact with no matter what their field or position, there’s something to learn from them. So in some small way, everyone we interact with can truly be a role model.”
Anita extends this philosophy in her interactions with BYJUites as well. Every day, the sheer passion and commitment that the teams put into creating immersive learning experiences for students, is nothing short of incredible. “I’ve seen people give their heart and soul to everything that they do. And that’s what has inspired me,” she adds.
The decade-long journey for Anita, has been rife with opportunities as well as challenges. Especially, the last 18 months, which witnessed a transformation in the edtech sector at large. “We could have been bogged down by just the sheer complexity of having to execute all of this remotely,” she says. “But instead, we saw it as a strong opportunity… I feel the biggest risk you can take is not taking enough risks. And when you take risks, there will be challenges. But there won’t be missed opportunities.”
Anita believes that “you are your own competition” and that exact strategy has led BYJU’S to become what it is today. “Every single day, try to be the best that you’ve ever been. Think really big, set the bar high, all of us are far better than what we think we are. So, don’t make the mistake of selling yourself short. Always aim for the stars, and you will be sure to reach them,” adds the BYJUite.
(The story has been put together by our Storyweavers, Shreesha Ghosh and Sutrishna Ghosh)
Arya C is a 4th grader who talks about her transition from the US to India and how BYJU`S has helped her at that. She also loves how BYJU`S has made learning a lot more fun.
Meet Sourabh who has a ton to say about his BYJU`S learning experience. His love for quizzes, games and other fun activities are paying off!
V Shriya is a class eight student who has been using BYJU’S for a year now. She shares her experiences with using the app and how it has helped her in improving her academic performance.