In our latest post, Anjali Tumrukota, Chief of Staff and People & Development at Taulia, discusses her eight years at the company, moving up the career ladder, life-changing opportunities, and the power of LIFT.
Most kids grow up dreaming of someday becoming a teacher, an astronaut, or a doctor. I, however, was not one of those kids. I would think I knew what I wanted to be, and then I would change my mind three months later. This feeling continued throughout college. Despite this, I graduated with a degree in Economics and Environmental Studies. I knew I needed to get my career started to figure out who I was and what I wanted to do in the world.
About a year after I graduated, I somehow found myself as a recruiter at a staffing firm and was thoroughly enjoying the process of connecting people with their dream jobs. The irony in this is not at all lost on me, trust me. I wasn’t looking for a new position, but a unique opportunity for a recruiting coordinator position at a relatively new company called Taulia appeared in front of my eyes. After doing a bit of research on the company, I decided to go for it because although it was a step down from my role, the position was brand new, and I thought I could take this opportunity to grow with the company.
Oh, how right I was!
I’m proud to say that I am now, eight years later, Chief of Staff and People Development & Management at Taulia. How might you ask? To which I would answer – with hard work, support, and empowerment from the entire company.
Since I’ve walked through the doors at Taulia, I’ve always felt respected and had the freedom to speak my mind and make important strategic decisions. I put in many early mornings and late nights and started rising through the ranks in recruiting and eventually HR and People Management. About two years into my time at Taulia, my CEO, Cedric Bru, asked to meet with me and told me that he saw a lot of potential in me and wanted to help me with whatever it was I wanted to do. We would meet every couple of months to go over where I was and talk through my likes and dislikes until one day, he called me into his office and asked me if I’d consider being the Chief of Staff at Taulia.
I was stunned!
Here I was, the girl who had no idea what she wanted to do with her life until a year ago, to now being given an opportunity I had never even fathomed, by the CEO.
Starting in this new role was tough because although I had been at Taulia for a lifetime (in today’s day and age), I felt self-conscious of my generation, gender, and experience. Something that never seemed to cross anyone else’s mind, by the way. I received nothing but support from everyone throughout the organization and my personal life. However, I felt I couldn’t do this role, nor did I deserve it.
I decided to talk to some of the women in our LIFT group, a leadership group for women to connect, share experiences, and help each other grow professionally. I talked out how I was feeling and learned that what I was feeling wasn’t abnormal, making me feel much less alone. It was through these discussions that I decided to take this role one day at a time. As time went on, I started to get more comfortable in my position and am so grateful that I had the support of my leaders, the strong women of LIFT, and my family and friends. Although the hard work and achievements were mine, It took a village to help me have confidence in myself, my skills, and abilities.
When I look around and see what is going on in the world today, it deeply saddens me. Although we live in an era where women’s issues are coming to the forefront, it hurts to know that there is still a huge pay disparity between men and women in this day and age. This means that so many women out there are not allowed to reach their true potential. Many women don’t even feel safe in their work environments.
While I’m unfortunately not sure if all of these issues will be solved in my lifetime, I see the light at the end of the tunnel. I see so many brave women speaking out and change starting to infiltrate the world in various forms. I was one of the lucky ones to have so many people support me on what I hope is only the beginning of my professional journey. Still, I wanted to share my story to say that even though we mostly see the bad in the world right now, there is a lot of good as well, and it’s up to us to make the change we want to see happen in the world.
Anjali has recently been recognized as one of Supply & Demand Chain Executive’s top female leaders in the Supply Chain industry. Read more about her award recognition here!