Priyanka Kodikal, Product Designer

Tell us abit about yourself and what you do?

My name is Priyanka. I was born, raised and educated in Mumbai. I grew up around artists, so to pursue a career in the arts was an obvious choice for me. I studied graphic design in college and got my first job at an entertainment startup. I immigrated to the US twelve years ago, six of which I spent designing at a non-profit in Austin, Texas. Before moving to the US, I spent a few years in New Zealand. I currently live in the Bay Area and work as a product designer at WhatsApp.

How and why did you get involved in tech

I got my start at a non-profit in Austin. I was mostly doing print and web design when I was tasked with designing some icons for a mobile app. I didn’t know much about app design, but as I looked through the screens I saw an opportunity to improve the interface. Long story short, I ended up working on the product for two full years — just learning by doing. It was really rewarding to see people use a product I’d helped design. This experience of solving problems through technology and design left me hungry for more product work. But I also realized I had a lot to learn. Eventually, I decided to join a tech company, and so began my journey to silicon valley.

What is your experience being a POC in Tech?

As a WOC in tech, I’ve been incredibly lucky to work with people who believe in me. But when I just started out, I experienced imposter syndrome like never before. I was the only woman on the team; I was conscious of my accent and appearance; I didn’t know many women designers whom I could go to for advice. As I started to get comfortable with my new team, I realized this feeling that I didn’t belong was mostly in my mind and it kept me from learning and growing as a designer. Tech or not – we work with people. We all have similarities and differences. Our differences make us unique, and I learned to embrace mine.

What advice would you give to a young person who wanted to enter tech?

Embrace what makes you unique, and believe that you belong here. Being a POC is an advantage; you add a diverse perspective, which is critical for building products on a global scale. Don’t be shy to ask for help. Make an effort to connect with people you look up to and seek their advice/guidance.
Lastly, when you *make it* in tech, pay it forward. Remember, you can’t be what you cant see. Be seen, and guide those trying to follow in your footsteps.

Where can we find you?


Hey 👋🏿,

Thanks for showing love and reading our content. As a wholly independent and bootstrapped company, we rely upon on our community and readers. If you want to support POCIT go here to our Patreon

Talk Soon!
Michael Berhane, Founder of POCIT
Michael Berhane
Michael Berhane

Co-founder and CEO of & Also the co-host of the #Techish podcast! Full Stack JavaScript developer by trade.

Related Posts