This profile is published as part of Pledge 1%’s Women Who Lead series, which celebrates women in the Pledge 1% community who are creating change within their workplace and communities.

Anutthara Bharadwaj is a Group Product Manager at Atlassian. Read the full interview below to learn more about Anu’s career journey and what inspires her to lead.


Q1:  What inspired you to work in this industry?

I have always been interested in technology – from writing games as a 11 year old on my first PC to getting patents for technological innovations at Microsoft. The best thing about this industry is having the chance to touch the lives of millions of users through something I can create.

Q2:  What would you tell women who are looking to work in tech?  Any advice on how they can build their career?

We are on the cusp of several technological innovations that have the potential to revolutionize human life as we know it. Some of the biggest problems of our time – climate change, energy equality, health care, all have solutions rooted in technology. There’s never been a better time to work in technology. Don’t let anything discourage you from your chance at shaping the future of the planet.

Q3:  Is your company a Pledge 1% member or do you personally give back to your community? If so, how do you give and to what cause?

Atlassian is a founding member of Pledge 1% and the culture of giving is inherent among Atlassians. I am on the board of a non-profit org, Global Sisters, that we support via the Atlassian Foundation. I’ve had the good fortune of being able to take a sabbatical last year to work on wildlife conservation projects in Africa and community development projects in India. Over the years, I’ve been able to donate money to causes I am passionate about, but the chance to spend an intense period of time on those causes was more fulfilling and enlightening than I had imagined.

Q4:  Do you serve as a mentor?  What does mentorship mean to you?

Yes, over the last decade, I’ve had the opportunity to mentor over a 100 people, from various arenas – colleagues, ex-reports, entrepreneurs, students. I’ve had the good fortune of having great mentors throughout my career and mentoring is my way of paying it forward.

Q5:  What’s the best piece of advice you’ve received to help you with your career?

The best advice I’ve received is to not be afraid of failing. Contrary to what you’d expect, in the tech industry, it is encouraged to fail fast. Thanks to the fast pace of technology, the more number of things you try in a shorter amount of time, the likelier it is that you succeed. To do that, you have to be willing to fail. And learn from those failures. I’ve learned this from experience several times during my career.