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Precisely Women in Technology: Meet Aarti

Authors Photo Precisely Editor | February 3, 2021

At Precisely, recognizing individuality is a key value of our organization. This week, we’re introducing you to Aarti Anawalikar, Precisely’s Sr. Director, R&D, UI/UX Shared Services. Based in Pune, India, Aarti has built a 22-year-career in technology and is a member of our Precisely Women in Technology program.

How did you get into the technology field?

My father was an electrical engineer and strongly believed in practical application of theoretical knowledge. I vividly remember him spending his entire weekend once to fix the water pump, motor, and piping for our apartment complex. I was always his helper in these endeavors. He had a field job and often brought back engineering drawings of installations he was working on. He used to explain how his project would look in a three-dimensional view, and I always felt excited to see how civil works, machines, and projects were designed as two-dimensional figures on paper, and then built to perfection.

As a child I was always good at Math, but I also had a very poor recall capacity, which meant I kept forgetting important words when I was writing or talking, as well as names and dates in historical references and daily life. This in a way forced me to use logical ways and patterns to improve on my recall capacity, and I started becoming better. Patterns and logic became a part of everyday life and every decision I made.

I guess all this exposure and encouragement as a child stuck with me, and a logical career choice (pun intended!) was to pursue an engineering and technology field.

Who has had the greatest impact on your career?

I have been fortunate to work with some splendid leaders and colleagues in companies like Capgemini, IBM, and now Precisely. Each of them has had an impact in terms of shaping my career. They have challenged me, inspired me, and supported me in various stages in my career. A couple of them are now my mentors for life!

I would like to talk specifically about Shoel Perelman, simply because he was one leader that made me love my job just a little bit more than I already did! It was a privilege to work for him when he was the VP of Engineering at IBM. His high level of energy and enthusiasm was contagious. He enabled, coached, and inspired us to think out of the box, and he himself came up with some innovative and bold ideas that sparked new possibilities. He took on hard challenges for himself, and he gave us equally hard problems to solve. He never provided solutions on a platter. Finding and implementing solutions with him was like getting on to a fun game with twists and turns, yet in the end, implementing an innovative, creative, and a practical solution! Shoel is a catalyst leader — he ignited the best in me. Over the years, simply observing him and working with him has helped me become a better leader and an engineer.

What do you love most about technology?

I love the fact that Precisely technology and products help solve difficult, real-world problems. There is great satisfaction and joy to know that we serve such a diverse range of customers to help them achieve remarkable things. The technology landscape is everchanging, and there is never a dull moment here!

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How have you managed to create work/life balance throughout your career?

In my experience there is no perfect ‘work/life balance’! How many times have you planned your day, but the day refuses to go by your plan? It may be futile to strive for a perfect schedule — better to strive for a realistic one! Balance can be achieved, but it happens over time, and not every day. Sometimes work takes the priority, and sometimes home and children take the priority. It’s important to know what to focus on and when.

I do take time off from work from time to time, especially during major festivals, and when I take vacations with family and friends. I most certainly plan these ahead of time so that my work priorities are handled, and colleagues can represent me while I am away. Time off from work with family and friends becomes a great energizer for me to come back to office rejuvenated!

What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?

Career is not a race. It is important to enjoy your work and life while you build your career. Don’t wait to celebrate the big success — celebrate small successes along the way!

What are your hopes for other women in the technology field?

I believe that today we do have the groundwork laid out for a long-lasting change to happen in the technology industry for women. I hope that women approach their career in technology with self-confidence and without guilt.

I look to my colleagues and leaders in Precisely – women working as strategists, analysts, data scientists, developers, and many more. They are a source of inspiration and hope that makes me believe that the future of women in technology is very strong!

Learn more about us on our Careers and Culture page.