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CTzen Stories: Priya Baptista – Push Your Limits, Not Excuses

Priya Baptista Priya Baptista leads Learning and Development & Employee Engagement. She values teamwork. Practices meditation. Finds peace and clarity in quiet moments
CTzen Stories: Priya Baptista – Push Your Limits, Not Excuses

Everyone has a story waiting to be heard. We’re highlighting some of the amazing stories from within CleverTap — from our very own CTzens — because we believe in the amazing people we work with everyday and want to share the exciting work culture that we’ve built together. Presenting: the CTzens of CleverTap.  

Priya Baptista: In Her Own Words

​​I was lucky to have a role model growing up: my uncle, who was an engineer. Since I looked up to him, I too wanted to become an engineer. I took up science after my class tenth boards, but realized I had no real affinity towards the subject, especially mathematics. After a lot of discussion at home, I approached a career counselor and took an aptitude test. With the results, she recommended doing something in mass communication or aviation. I still continued with science and got my BS in Chemistry. 
I then got an opportunity to earn a Diploma in Aviation Management and got a job in Jet Airways as ground staff. This was my first experience of being outside my comfort zone. It was a very demanding job, but I wanted a role that covered all the basics and I learned a lot. 
After that, I got a job at Cathay Pacific Airways. Their Mumbai airport team was small but the learning was amplified. My role also expanded to flight handling and customer service. It was in this role that I was bitten by the training bug. I was given an opportunity to train the new employees on things like grooming, check-ins, flight operations, customer service, etc. I also realized that I was enjoying learning new skills and being able to impact people with the knowledge I had gained. 

A Career as a Learning Professional

That’s when I realized training was my calling, and I decided to pursue this as a career. My next opportunity was with the HR – Training team at Kingfisher Airlines. Here again, I was afforded opportunities to further develop my skill set in training content creation and delivery. I also went through both the good and the bad times at Kingfisher Airlines. It was an eye-opening experience watching a thriving airline succumb to the situation in just two short years. 
Soon after, I got an opportunity to work with VFS Global where I learned a lot more about core Learning & Development, and my interest in human behavior & psychology grew stronger. My role as a learning professional required me to constantly enhance my knowledge, and I got training certifications in areas like NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming), Organization Development, Leadership Development, Emotional Intelligence, MBTI®, and more. I became a member of the Indian Society of Applied Behavioural Science (ISABS) which helped me better understand human processes. I participated in T-group programmes that focused on building competency in personal effectiveness and making it available for organizational development. 

Upskilling and Pushing Boundaries

I also discovered myself in the process. I realized that upskilling was actually a gift to myself — a step towards personal growth and development. I would push my boundaries to work on myself. I began looking for new challenges, and that’s when I got a job offer from CleverTap in March 2020. This was right when the pandemic had just hit, and I had mixed emotions. My manager at CleverTap was super supportive. I joined in May 2020 and met the entire team virtually. It was an opportunity to build the Learning & Development department from scratch, and I was pumped for my peak performance phase. 
But life had other plans for me. In a month’s time, I got the biggest news of my life that I was expecting a baby. I was thrilled but also worried since I was very new to the company. I shared this with my manager and the assurance I received from him was so encouraging. I worked throughout my pregnancy and went on maternity leave in January 2021, beginning one of the most amazing phases of my life: motherhood.  Being a new mother was overwhelming as well as joyous.

New Challenges and a Renewed Focus

Although I loved motherhood, I would constantly question what I was doing for myself. Yes, the upskilling itch had returned. I decided to take up the 21-day learning challenge during my maternity leave, to learn a new course every single day through Udemy or LinkedIn. Some courses were short while others were long, but I completed the challenges while nursing and taking care of my little one. I also posted my certificates on LinkedIn for accountability and that helped me push further on days when it got tough.
Many people referred to this phase of mine as FOMO, but it gave me the confidence to get back to work with vigor. After resuming work at CleverTap, I had the opportunity to work on extremely interesting projects. These projects gave me assurance and helped me broaden my horizons. 
Balancing work life and home was not easy, but yet again, I had a thirst for knowledge. This time, I did something crazier than I ever expected. One day, after I had dropped my toddler at pre-school and was sitting in a café, I decided to pursue my MBA in HR. I realized that there is no better time than NOW. It had been on my wish list for a long time, and I decided to take the plunge. I paid my fees and then told my family about it. They were shocked but were supportive of my decision to get back to school after so many years. 

Find an Organization That Supports Your Growth

I still think about this decision and do not have answers to my coping mechanism for completing my MBA. But what I know is that my drive to learn will push me to achieve what I aim for. I am also blessed with a very supportive spouse and family. They are my cheerleaders and have stood by me through all of my bold decisions. 
I also strongly believe that I wouldn’t be able to make this decision if not for CleverTap because this is an organization that supports you emotionally and encourages its people to feel at ease about talking about our career choices and options. I would like to encourage anyone and everyone to keep learning because there is so much to pursue and so many diverse opportunities to be had.
Like the quote by Paulo Coelho, ”There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.”

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Last updated on March 22, 2024