At Kognic, culture matters. We don’t just share our goals and values, we live by them. And this reflects in everything we do, from an All-Hands meeting, to writing an email, having a one-on-one with our manager, or any activity part of our daily job. We’ve seen the impact values can make, and how they help us create together what Kognic will be tomorrow.
But, how does this culture materialize? In our summer piece, We are our people, we shared some testimonials of Kognicians where you could get an idea of what it is like to work at Kognic. And since we wanted to include many of them, we didn’t dive deep into each of those stories. That’s why we’re starting this series of articles, in which we will talk about members of our team, and the role Kognic has played in their lives for the past months. In today's blog post, you will get to know more about our colleague Meera Ranganathan. 🤗
Team-player, curious and avid learner, Meera joined Kognic already a year ago. Indeed, time goes by notoriously quick at the company and we can tell this is something shared: the learning curve at Kognic is definitely steep and intense!
Before starting at Kognic, she had worked within the areas of marketing and tourism; people and culture; and project management; in fields such as software solutions, UX, and environment & wastewater management, and had gathered much international experience. But she wanted more. When we ask her, she doesn’t think twice: “Working with brilliant minds and taking inspiration from their experiences is something that continues to fascinate me, and that is one of the perks of working here as a Data Delivery Manager”.
But, who is Meera, and what brought her here? While pursuing a Master's in Business Administration in India, her passion and interest in developing an effective business arsenal, and a versatile company environment grew more and more. As a passionate individual, she was hungry for bigger challenges. From India to the Netherlands, and from there to Sweden, Meera has proved to be adventurous and not afraid to take risks.
And just like that, more than five years have passed since she landed in Gothenburg. How did she experience the change? “Having already lived some of the European culture and way of life in the Netherlands, moving to Gothenburg was not a gargantuan change. However, I was still quite excited and nervous while envisaging what was in store for me personally and professionally. For the first few months, I focused on learning Swedish and Swedish culture, my personal favorite being fika traditions!”
During this time, she narrates, she’s been lucky to have met many humble and inspiring friends and teammates. All the same, it hasn’t always been smooth sailing. Finding your forever place in a new country, as well as encountering inclusive work cultures, can be hard at times. As many of us do, she came to realize that she need not 'fit in', and that a workplace should promote and inculcate an inclusive culture.
Then, one day, she heard about Kognic from a friend. “I wanted to learn more about how machine learning is going to shape our future, and how the company was contributing to efficient automated driving experiences. It sounded truly cutting edge technology! My attention was drawn toward the position of Data Delivery Manager, which sounded both rewarding and challenging - something that I was looking for, so I applied for the job!”, she recounts.
When we ask her about the most rewarding task in the job description, she doesn’t doubt: “That I would get to collaborate with multiple internal and external stakeholders and work on improvements and solutions together” (we did mention that she was a team-player, right?). And what about the challenges? “Ensuring structured workflows, managing offshore teams and keeping them aligned and involved with Kognic goals didn’t sound easy, but this was the type of challenge I was seeking!".
It’s been a year now, and it is a great time to reflect upon her life at Kognic so far. “What I like the most is to collaborate with the different teams. I get to learn a lot from many people, also from external teams (BPOs, LQMs). And it’s very interesting to see what their working cultures are like and learn from them”.
An open-feedback culture, flat hierarchies and transparency is the icing on the cake. “In my team, Data Delivery, everyone is very transparent and feels very comfortable sharing their thoughts and providing constructive feedback, which is very appreciated”. Meera tells us how her whole team is involved when taking important decisions, such as when onboarding new candidates. As you may guess, not just knowledge, but also proven skills and being a cultural fit play a key role when recruiting at Kognic. That’s why the recruitment process entails several steps, being always one of them a case study (and in some cases, even two!). Meera also went through it, and proved to be the best one!
How is her working life different now from years ago? “My journey with Kognic has been one of the best experiences so far. From day one, my team has trusted me to take on major tasks. They have always involved me throughout the entire development process, and it’s clear that they value my opinions as they often provide me opportunities to lead assignments. For example, the process of structuring our own team, and improving our workflows, or the opportunity of taking the lead on bringing in changes to our way of working models with our Quality Managers team in Ukraine”.
If one thing characterizes Meera is her endless interest in learning. At work, from other people’s experiences and challenges, from other cultures.
It’s no surprise that, when asked about things she enjoys in life, she mentions meeting new people, learning from their experiences and getting inspiration from them. Ideas grow better when we’re in dialogue with each other! Other than that, in her spare time you’ll also find her going for long walks, trying her hand at photography, cozying up and reading a book, watching Netflix, and being creative.
To conclude our interview, we asked Meera to sum up the way she feels since she’s been at Kognic. “I consider myself fortunate to be a part of this welcoming work environment, we’re always reflecting on our way of working with internal employees, external teams, and clients. And on a personal level, to be able to grow and develop, and always be included, that’s a great feeling”. And we can’t feel happier when we see her shine. ✨
And you, do you share our excitement for exploring uncharted territory and constantly extending your knowledge in an inclusive working environment? We’re currently recruiting for several roles! If you want to know more, visit our Careers page.