Arti Nokhai is account manager at e-office. What e-office does is creating smarter organisations, which are more flexible and therefore quick-witted through the use of digital workspaces. She loves the world of digital technology now, but when she was younger she was thinking about a career as a real estate agent. So what made her change her mind? This is her career story.

My early thought about IT and my career dreams

When I was still in school I never really thought about ending up in IT. Just as many young girls now I thought of IT as dusty, which was most likely nourished by people who are sitting behind a monitor coding all day and not having much contact with the outside world (no offence, everybody has its own thing). I did not see myself doing that; I was not that type of person. Therefore, IT wasn’t on my list of potential employers. Real estate agent; that was it for me!

But before I wanted to become a real estate agent I wanted to become a jet pilot… I wanted to work as a surgeon in a hospital; I wanted to better the world by becoming a judge; I wanted to work in a laboratory to create new drugs and many more. But it did not quite go that way.

How did I make my way into digital technology?

I started my education for real estate agent and wanted to gain some work experience. I walked into a randomly chosen employment agency put my requirement about travelling distance and type of work on the table. And before I knew I worked at Oracle, not aware that Oracle was on of the biggest in the world of IT. Well, back then, Google was not yet your friend. And I loved IT… Dusty? Not at all! I was so surprised. Everything went fast, everything was possible, and there were relatively many young people with a huge drive and passion. There were professionals who were so proud to be able to work for this company. And there was I with your plans on becoming a real estate agent… You can imagine that I shoved those plans right off the table and that I wanted to become a part of this innovative world. No sooner said than done!

IT is inspiring

My choice to start working in IT was not quite deliberate. I have no regrets and I sincerely recommend women to work in this sector! Now, years later, I am working at e-office where I am engaged with cognitive innovations. Last October, I visited with 17.000 others a conference in Las Vegas about Watson of IBM. My colleagues and I were totally inspired and together we come up with new applications and solutions with and for our (new) clients.

Why is it important for women to work in digital technology?

When you think of what you would like to do when you grow up, which is, if you ask me, not age-related, please consider IT as well. The next few years, a lot is going to change rapidly. Many jobs will stop existing due to new (cognitive) developments. This creates chances, especially for women. Women are naturally creative and inquisitive, which are very valuable qualities within IT. IT is really cool and it is challenging. There is no must on having a technical background, as long as you are open to new things.

Whenever you cannot figure it out; send me an email, give a call or step by at e-office. To finish I would like to share this quote of Ginni Rommety (CEO of IBM):

“accept risk, aim big and never let anyone else tell you what’s possible.