Sobhana Desikan

“Diversity is about more than conversations in conference rooms.”

Everything Sobhana does sounds cool. When she talks about her role at Nutanix, she casually throws in phrases like long-term business planning, sales programs and go-to-market strategies.

The path that brought her to Nutanix has been an interesting one, with a mix of different internal and external customer-facing roles. She worked as a programmer for five years, took a break to get her MBA, was selected for a sales leadership program (and was the only woman in her batch), and subsequently moved on to support the president of a global corporation in strategizing go-to-market plans for his $3B portfolio. (Like we said, just really, really cool.)

And over the span of her career, she’s had both personal and professional experiences that ignited her passion for diversity. For example, as a mother of two, Sobhana experienced first-hand the challenges that come with staying in the workforce after having children. And, in true Nutanix style, when she joined us, she decided to focus on how we can bring back women who have decided to take a longer break.

Sobhana drives WomEncore – the India chapter of the Nutanix Returnship Program – which is designed specifically to help women return to work after taking a career break. Like all the other things that she’s involved in, her plans for this initiative are ambitious as well.

“WomEncore isn’t about checking a box on a diversity checklist. We’re constantly thinking about scale and sustainability. How can this program evolve to bring more women back into tech in the long-term? It’s a question we’re constantly trying to answer as we learn and evolve this initiative.”

But gender diversity is just the beginning. While it’s easy to look at male-female ratios and perform enthusiastic horn-tooting about diversity, Sobhana’s goal is far more nuanced. She believes that as a company, Nutanix is in the right place and has the right kind of commitment to address diversity across the spectrum – be it race, orientation, ability or more. And, just like us, she’s in it for the long haul.

These are, undoubtedly, bold ambitions. Lofty goals that people and companies have been trying to tackle for years. But, similar to other people on this page, Sobhana is uniquely positioned to find solutions – simply because, like most people who champion something that matters, she took a stand and chose to make this mission her own.