Business Today

Aiming High

Divya Gokulnath of Byju's is making efforts to bring more women in leadership roles
Rukmini Rao | Print Edition: October 6, 2019
Aiming High
Divya Gokulnath, Co-founder and Director of Think & Learn Photograph by Sudhir Damerla

Staying low-key is what Divya Gokulnath, Co-founder and Director of Think & Learn, better known as Byju's, prefers. A rank holder in Biotech Engineering from Visvesvaraya Technological University, she recalls that as she was preparing for her GRE test, her father suggested she try out some mathematics classes he had heard of, held by a Byju Raveendran. Things took an unexpected turn.

"I had never learnt Math this way before; it was an eye opener," says Divya. She went on to get a good GRE score but chose to stay back in India and teach.

"I was regularly in touch with Byju on how to attack a problem and he offered me a chance at teaching," she says. After over a year, they got married. Byju's also transitioned from live to recorded classes and Byju's Learning App was launched in 2015.

From there to a point where Byju's received about $1 billion in funding has been about setting high standards. To this, Divya adds that there need to be leadership roles, especially among women. "Today, eight of the 10 who directly report to me are women." Almost 45 per cent of Byju's workforce is women. "Two out of six people on the board are women, half the top management is women. If you take care from the beginning, it won't be a challenge (women on boards of companies)," she says. Divya also advises young women to aspire to reach on top.

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