This blog is part of our on-going Women in Technology series.
Haruna Kobayashi is a Data Analyst with Consilio. Haruna joined the team in 2012, which was her first job out of college. Haruna earned her Bachelor of Science in Anthropology from California State University, Chico, and currently holds a Brain Space certification.
How did you get into this industry?
I was born and raised in Japan and studied abroad in Northern California. After I graduated from college, I did my best to find a job in the U.S. Because of the visa restrictions, this was pretty difficult for me and I ended up returning to Japan, where I looked for jobs instead. Consilio had a small office in Tokyo, and at the time they were looking for an entry-level project manager, specifically someone who could speak English. I applied for this position, and now here I am.
What qualities of yours do you feel helped to get you to where you are today?
When I joined Consilio, it was my first job and I was completely new to the field. I kept my mind and options open to anything. Every day I was learning and taking any opportunity for growth that I could get my hands on.
Have you ever noticed a time when your gender served as an apparent obstacle?
No, not really. When I was working in Tokyo, I was one of the few employees in the office who was female. However, I never felt that my gender made a difference or ever served as an obstacle.
What is something you are particularly proud of accomplishing during your career so far?
When I was in the Tokyo office, I began to mentor other project managers only several months after I joined the company. I felt more pressure as I was still learning about the industry itself, while then needing to pass this knowledge to the mentees.
I am also proud of the fact that I started with no experience and now I am on the data analytics teams. I love the rigor and special skills that are required every day.
What are your techniques for managing competing priorities and time management?
I always make a to-do list before I start my day. As soon as I get online, I’ll have a clear picture of what I need to accomplish that day. Additionally, if something comes up that is too much for me to handle, I find it helpful to ask for advice and suggestions from my managers and colleagues.
When you are not working how do you spend your free time?
I love reading in general, but these days I have been going through my old National Geographic magazines. Every so often I try to go hiking with my family. But, now that we are in lockdown, I have been binge-watching movies and TV shows on Netflix.