Tejal Ranjan is the Vice President of Marketing at Ivanti Wavelink and takes the leading role in the development of go-to-market strategy for supply chain product and solutions.

In a historically male-dominated sector, Tejal recently was named as one of the ‘Women in Supply Chain’ winners for the second year in a row.

Tell us a bit about yourself, your background and your current role?

My passion for the supply chain sector goes all the way back to my childhood – my father had a small manufacturing shop in India. From a very early age, I was learning about how supply chains work, giving me some foundational knowledge.

Then around 10 years ago, I was given the opportunity to manage the marketing for a renewable energy industry, the company manufactured wind turbine access equipment. to enable wind turbine OEMs and service providers to manage their operation and maintenance costs and improve employee safety, productivity and retention. From there, I developed a broader knowledge of warehouses before jumping into the mobile software world for an Australian-based company. The combination of experience in mobile software and in supply chain took me to Ivanti Wavelink where I joined the team as Senior Product Marketing Manager. Over the past four years, I’ve progressively climbed the ladder to my current role as Vice President of Marketing. This journey has been nothing short of extraordinary, marked by numerous opportunities and a wealth of knowledge. It has been particularly fulfilling to navigate and thrive in an industry traditionally known for gender disparities.

What challenges have you faced in your career and how did you overcome them?

‘Learning’ has presented one of the significant challenges, and this extends beyond the industry itself. There have been numerous occasions when I’ve found myself as the sole individual of my gender in the room, leading to moments of isolation. Building a professional network is essential for my role, but it can be challenging to establish when my professional circles are predominantly composed of individuals of one gender. There have been instances where my contributions were not met with the same level of receptiveness, and I sometimes felt that I wasn’t taken as seriously as my peers. I had to adapt and manage to navigate the situations with determination, persistence, mentorship and seeking allies. As a result, I’ve had to put in extra effort to assert myself without creating a perception of abrasiveness or threat.

What has been your biggest career achievement to date?

Among a multitude of personal and professional achievements, including pioneering the launch of the first mobile app for an eCommerce catalog and my integral involvement in the Go-To-Market (GTM) strategy for the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), what fills me with the greatest sense of pride is the transformative role I’ve played as a mentor in the workplace.
I nurtured the growth and development of numerous individuals, sharing my expertise, insights, and support. That is something I will always look at it with pride.

Furthermore, through strategically integrated campaigns, field marketing initiatives, and innovative new market development, I’ve spearheaded initiatives that have fundamentally revolutionized our approach to GTM. These efforts have not only had a profound impact on our sales pipeline within Wavelink but other organizations too.

What barriers for women working in tech are still to be overcome?

While significant progress has been made in promoting gender diversity in the tech industry, several barriers for women continue to persist. Over the years, I’ve witnessed the industry evolve towards greater inclusivity. However, during this period, I’ve had to consistently demonstrate my capabilities and earn the trust of my colleagues. Regrettably, it appears that women may perpetually face the need to exert extra effort for their contributions to receive recognition and for their voices to be valued. Nevertheless, the industry is presently undergoing a remarkable transformation, and I am honoured and humbled to have this opportunity at Ivanti Wavelink. I am eagerly looking forward to persistently championing innovation and serving as an inspiration for the next generation, irrespective of gender.

What top tips would you give to an individual who is trying to excel in their career in technology?

Believe in yourself – this is something I really struggled with at the beginning of my career. Know that your gender doesn’t determine your skills, talent, potential or competency and dig deep to understand how you can fully embrace your strengths. Confidence is your greatest asset.

I have a 16-year-old daughter and something I always tell her is that there will be times you will fail, that’s just part of the journey. But the most important thing is that despite a failure, you pick yourself up and learn from the process. So, learn to be resilient.

My second piece of advice is to seek a mentor. I know first-hand how valuable it is to lean on someone for insight and support. Growing up in Indian culture my upbringing with four strong women was deeply influenced by my father’s teachings. He always encouraged us to dream big and stay true to our values. This is something I’ve passed on to my own daughter, teaching her that with determination and hard work, you can turn aspirations into reality.

And then finally, never stop learning. I still love projects where I don’t have a lot of knowledge on the subject, so I can truly get stuck in. I always stay curious – I tell my daughter to be kind and curious. This will help you embrace all your strengths and become a leader.

Read more from our inspirational women here.