What is your name and title?
Srichandana Nagoji, APAC Programs Manager, Salesforce.org
 
Briefly describe your role at your company?
I lead our Giving Back programs for Hyderabad, our largest office in India and also support other APAC regions. My role involves fostering non-profit relationships, investing in education and workforce development programs that help level the playing field for youth in underserved communities, inspiring employees to give back and creating opportunities for employees to volunteer meaningfully.
 
How long have you been in your current position?
8 months.
What advice do you have for women who are just starting their career?
While many classrooms see girls at the top, not many boardrooms do. Once out of college, most women give into societal gender roles and stop aiming for the stars. Don’t give in. Find women mentors who made it up the ladder and soak in their inspiration. Keep caring for yourself and your dreams.
 
Is there a cause that is particularly close to you? If so, why this cause and how did you get involved?
Education is the cause I am passionate about. I believe that building a well educated society is the only sustainable solution to all the problems we talk about. I started my journey in education 9 years ago as a teaching volunteer in a low-income school for tribal children. After graduation, I became a Teach for India fellow teaching 81 children in an under-resourced government school and have continued to be associated with the cause.
What’s the one piece of advice you would give to yourself 5 years ago?
It is ok to say ‘NO’. Women especially are sub-consciously conditioned to be nice and obedient. We tolerate unpleasant situations and push ourselves too much before we say no. I have realised that being able to say NO is important. It not only saves our time and energy but also builds our confidence.
 
Are you reading anything interesting at the moment? Please share your most recent favorite read!
I am reading ‘Becoming’ by Michelle Obama at the moment and it is a story many self-made women will relate to.
 
If you could sit down with three women (living or dead) for dinner, who would those three women be (and why!)?
Michelle Obama: For being an epitome of a rare combination of Grace and Confidence
Sunitha Krishnan: For inspiring me to travel the road less taken
My mother: For teaching me that strength and courage often lie at places we seldom look for them – in silence, in letting-go, in tears, in sacrifice
 
What’s something coming up soon (personally or professionally) that super excites you?
I am currently pursuing an Executive Program in Social Impact Strategy from University of Pennsylvania. I am totally looking forward to applying the aspects of this program to my work and creating better impact.