In honor of Women’s History Month, AEO is highlighting the incredible contributions of some of our talented and dynamic female leaders. Meet Kruti Patel, Director – Product Management and AEO Community Member since 2019. Kruti shares her insights as a female tech leader and offers poignant advice for women just starting out in their careers.
Tell us about your career at AEO and what a day in the life of your job looks like
When I joined the company, I started working with the customer-facing product management team, where I learned about the practice of product management at AEO. I then led the team in a new direction where we embraced product best practices while staying true to the authentic AEO culture.
I was challenged in every way, but learned that as long as a team is committed to achieving the best results, anything is possible. Today, I continue to help my team iterate on their product roadmaps, identify new opportunities in the products and services we oversee, run solution exploration workshops with our cross-functional partners, to increase our production and last but not least to measure the impact. about our customers and our business. I am always impressed by how far we have come in such a short time!
What’s it like as a woman working in the tech space?
One of the biggest challenges I’ve encountered in this field is that technology changes at such a rapid pace, and you have to be prepared to be a beginner before you can be an expert – often over and over again. As a female leader in technology, I strive to be transparent that I’m still learning every day. Not only does this help me have a growth mindset, but I hope it helps other women know that learning is an integral part of the tech environment.
Who is the woman you turn to for motivation and inspiration?
Whether it’s my peers, my direct reports or my manager, they all motivate me! I also draw a lot of inspiration from autobiographies written by women. Right now I’m reading about ClassPass founder Payal Kadakia in her new book LifePass: Drop Your Limits, Rise to Your Potential. The title alone is inspiring enough!
What advice would you give to your younger self and to women starting their careers?
The work we do throughout our careers makes some kind of difference, and it’s important to be intentional about the kind of difference you want to make. I can’t stress enough that your career goals should be your own, backed by a solid why, and that’s it if you’re not enjoying the journey you’re on. Finally, I will say that successful careers are not marked by a linear trajectory. Successful careers can also lead you to try different things, learn new skills, and have fun while you do it!
What accomplishment are you most proud of at AEO?
The growth and development of my team! Really, they get the most credit for it, because while I may have given them a rope to run with, they are the ones who show up every day taking positive action on their own behalf. I may have started out as a coach, but now I can watch them do their best from a pitchside seat!