Inspired by International Women’s Day, we recently launched at campaign to all of our channels to truly celebrate the powerful and inspiring women of Starship. Although we only have one specific month to celebrate the women who fight for #breakthebias, we are dedicated to amplifying the voice of women every day.
If Kaari’s story inspires you or if you’re interested in working at Starship, be sure to check out our career page, as we currently have over 120 open positions worldwide.
Happy International Women’s Day, Kaari! Please tell us a little about your career.
To be honest, I’ve never planned anything in my career. I didn’t think about becoming a software engineer, it just happened to me. I came to Starship as a boring PhD student, looking for a bigger team and something faster. I get a lot of energy from other people around me and I like it if there are others to lean on.
Go, how exactly did you end up in your position?
I ended up in my position telling others that I would like to code more. Sounds like a great thing to do. And then others went out of their way to help me get there. It is easy to help others when they know what they want.
Your story on how to maintain confidence and follow your instincts is very inspiring! In your current role at Starship, how is your daily life?
I am very involved in deciding what is most impactful to do in our field to achieve Starship goals. So part of my time is spent researching data. The other part is implementing all the ideas. I work with the management of which robot does what at what time. It is an exercise in endless optimization. And it’s basically impossible to say what would be really right. I like to operate in this uncertain space.
I especially enjoy long discussions with other people about how to solve problems. Get ideas and at the same time try to figure out why the solution fails.
In general, how would you describe the Starship culture? Or what do you like most about it? Did anything surprise you?
I would say that Starship has been a very attentive and considerate environment. What I like most is that I know that my managers are sincerely concerned about my well-being. That I am not just a human resource that needs to be managed, but I know that I can trust my colleagues to be able to open up about all sorts of issues and expect understanding.
I think Starship aspires to a very healthy work-life balance. As one of our engineering directors recently said, there are far more important things than work.
Finally, can you share with us any professional or professional advice you may have for women who want to work or develop in the technological field?
I think the key is to learn that everyone else is as clueless as you. I think literally everyone feels the imposter syndrome when it starts.
It’s pretty typical for young guys to start developing their interest in technology right from the start, because their friends like similar things and society as a whole encourages them, which is great. When you start as an adult, you may feel that others are much more knowledgeable, but they have learned technical things for much longer. I think at first I thought I couldn’t catch up, but now I know you can. Don’t mix the experience with the inherent ability!
Another thing I would recommend is to take on tasks that you don’t know how to solve. And when you get stuck, ask for help, it won’t make you look stupid. It’s great if you find someone nice who isn’t afraid to ask the dumbest questions. They’re usually not fools, though it seems obvious to everyone except you.