57. Olga Pogoda – Co-founder, KRNLS

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“Learn on the fly. The best university will not give you all the skills that you need, especially when working with startups.”

Tell us a little bit about what a typical day looks like for you.

My typical day consists of doing mom stuff in the morning, running around from client meeting to client meeting in the middle of the day and then chauffeuring my kids around in the late afternoon. My day ends with me working on my laptop often late into the night.

How do you stay passionate in your career?

I am deeply inspired by all the innovation around me. There are so many brilliant minds focused on figuring out various solutions and building companies from scratch. I love working with minority-owned startups. Being an immigrant myself, I constantly inspired by the resiliency of these entrepreneurs.

Did you have a traditional path into tech (i.e.: CS/IT degree transitioned into tech job)?

Nope, my undergraduate degree is in History and Archeology.

Are there any apps, software, or tools you cannot live without?

ADOBE SUITE!

It’s common knowledge that women and femmes often face obstacles in the tech industry based on their gender. Have you ever had to deal with this type of experience and if so how did you handle it?

Multiple times I’ve had strange comments made in meetings. The most glaring example I can think of is a presentation I did for the Department of Defense where after the presentation one of the men pulled me aside and actually said, “I’m surprised by how much you know based on the way you look.”

What’s your favorite thing about being a part of the #womenintech community?

My favorite thing is the inspirational success stories. Women in tech are pretty badass!

If applicable, how have you given back to the WIT community?

I have been a mentor to numerous WIT programs and I love hiring women!

What is a piece of advice you would give to others wanting to or currently pursuing a career in tech?

Learn on the fly. The best university will not give you all the skills that you need, especially when working with startups. I found that the best thing to do is to be flexible and be willing to learn.

Tell us about a time you felt extremely accomplished in the past year. 

The most accomplished I have felt this year was when we hired our first employee, Alyssa Andress. Having someone so smart and accomplished on our team was a huge win and being able to extend a position to another woman in tech felt pretty incredible!

Favorite quote:

“Let’s unfuck this shit.”

Scot MacTaggart

CONNECT WITH OLGA:

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