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This Engineer-turned-product Manager is Channelling Her Expertise to Make Learning Impactful

Team StoryWeavers|April 27, 2022, 17:04 IST|
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“I believe it’s imperative to immerse yourself completely in the education domain if you wish to create a positive impact and contribute meaningfully to the field. There’s a lot to learn and understand before one can make a successful career in this domain,” says Rekha Kendyala, Senior Product Manager at BYJU’S.

For this BYJUite, it is a learner-obsessive approach coupled with the passion to make a difference that drives her work with BYJU’S Early Learn products. She says, in helping our young learners chart their unique learning journeys, it’s crucial to ensure that the product resonates with them.

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How an IT engineer turned to teaching

Before switching gears and moving to edtech, however, Rekha dabbled in the IT sector. Ask her what prompted her to make the switch and she says it was the desire to enhance the lives of students through education. Motivated by this idea, Rekha decided to make the leap and take up a mentoring position at the International Institute of Information Technology (IIIT) Hyderabad.

“In this role, I advised the students on career prospects and also took foundational software engineering classes,” she says.

During her time at IIIT, she also got interested in the science of learning. “I wanted to learn more about the various pedagogical techniques, and their outcomes. This was when I decided to pursue my Master’s degree in Education,” recalls Rekha.

While studying for her Master’s, the techie had the opportunity to work with various government projects and NGOs in her home state of Telangana. Passionate about girl-child education, she wanted to explore more.

“I worked with various NGOs who were trying to reduce female dropout rates in schools,” she shares. “And made trips to government schools to understand the impact of technology in classrooms. In fact, this is where my curiosity to learn more about education technology was born.”

Also Read: On a Mission to Inspire: BYJU’S Social Initiatives Team Leading Change Through Volunteering

Treading the world of technology and education

It was in 2016 that Rekha decided to move into the Edtech space; she has since worked as a product manager for a few companies before joining the team at BYJU’S. “It was an easy decision for me, as I wanted to be part of and create value with a brand that is impacting education at a larger scale,” she says. “The goal was always to create a love for learning in young children.”

And while product management was a natural fit, it isn’t her only area of expertise. Says Rekha, “I have worked in the education sector in multiple capacities — as a researcher, content creator and with the business development team. All this has contributed to my knowledge about product development and has allowed me to understand how various teams work.”

Developing a learner obsession

When you are building products for students, it is important for all the teams to be aligned to the same vision and develop a learner obsession.

“As a product manager, it is my responsibility to ensure that happens,” says Rekha. “At BYJU’S, what also makes the process seamless is the freedom to be creative and know that all ideas and opinions are heard. It’s one of the best things about working here, this really boosts collaborative teamwork.”

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Learner obsession is also what drives this BYJUite to actively pursue her other interests. “I am an avid trekker and frequently take out time to go on trips. Being a Gemini, I also wear multiple creative hats. I love painting glass bottles and currently, I am investing time in learning the ancient art form of Silambam,” she quips.

These varied pursuits are an essential part of Rekha’s creative process. In her own words, they keep her active, motivated, and most importantly, in a mind space where she can continue to innovate and create.

Like what you read? Head to Life at BYJU’S to learn more about our work, people, and the stories that make us unique. To explore job opportunities, check out Careers at BYJU’S.  

About the Author

Bidushi took a left turn from journalism and landed up in the corporate world. She is a foodie and considers eating good food amongst the greatest joys of life. Keen on travelling and exploring new places, Bidushi has spent the last four years of her life in three different Indian cities. But she has also learned that her bedroom is her happy place. Screens relax her greatly — whether it's watching a movie or a TV show or reading a riveting bestseller on her e-reader. A cheerful person, she prides herself on making friends easily. When not working, Bidushi can be found spending time with her parents, talking to her friends over a call, or browsing the internet for that one lipstick!

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