Women of DevRev: Meghna Punhani’s story of self-empowerment and inspiration

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Women of DevRev: Meghna Punhani’s story of self-empowerment and inspiration

Ever wondered if you had life all figured out at the age of 20? I sure did. I plunged into marriage, relocated to the US, and geared up to be the ultimate homemaker. Armed with a degree in Home Economics, I had the art of "taking care of the family" down to a science. It was an arranged marriage, and my hometown buzzed with envy—I'd seemingly accomplished the unattainable. Back home, my Dad had taken care of me; now, it was my husband’s turn.

Then, reality nudged me. My husband's vision of the world differed from mine. He saw potential in me beyond my own horizon. He encouraged me to swap my TV-and-typewriter view of computers for a master's in Information Technology. He also suggested I then look for a job. My initial reaction, "Huh? Why do I even need to work? What's the point of your hard-earned money?"

To make him happy (and maybe to get even), I decided to wing it. I delved into tech books (C, C++, Oracle, ASP, etc.) and started interviewing. I was fortunate; within six months, I landed my first gig as a 'developer' at a small company. Cue shockwaves among everyone—husband, folks back home, and, let's be honest, me.

Fast forward a few years, and the big break came: Google. Back then, it was a small company with just a few thousand employees. I started at the bottom, feeling dwarfed by the brilliance around me. Classic imposter syndrome, right? But I stuck with it. I absorbed knowledge like a sponge, experimented with new roles, and shadowed peers and leaders. Even when the kids came along, leaving the workforce wasn't an option. I'd found my calling. My growth was rapid, and I climbed the ladder with every step. Most importantly, I discovered a newfound sense of self-worth, financial independence, and the sheer joy of making a meaningful impact on the world.

My biggest takeaway from this adventure was the incredible impact of setting ambitious goals and pushing my own limits. By daring to dream big, I accomplished things I once believed were beyond my reach. There's a genuine thrill in pushing boundaries, and the learning that comes with it is invaluable. Surround yourself with people who challenge you, bring out your best, and encourage you to learn and grow.

From mistaking a computer for a TV screen, I became an integral part of an organization making the world's information universally accessible. Now, we're raising two daughters (16 & 10) who, hopefully, see their mom as a role model, would be self-sufficient, and won't need someone to 'take care' of them.

Meghna Punhani
Meghna PunhaniHead of Global Operations @ DevRev

People-focused Operations executive with a proven record of leading self-sustaining organizations through rapid growth and change.