Original Article by Christine Persaud, wifihifi.com, August 24, 2022.
The latest candidate in our series of Q&As with influential women in the technology business in Canada is Swati Matta, Founder & CEO, Koble, a digital health app for expecting and new parents.
Name: Swati Matta
Job Title: Founder & CEO, Koble
Years in the Industry: 13 Years
The Quote That Most Inspires You: “One of the criticisms I’ve faced over the years is that I’m not aggressive enough or assertive enough, or maybe somehow, because I’m empathetic, I’m weak. I totally rebel against that. I refuse to believe that you cannot be both compassionate and strong.” (- Jacinda Ardern)
(Note from Swati: When we refer to women here, we are speaking to women or people who identify as women.)
What drew you to a career in the consumer and/or business technology industry?
Attending the University of Waterloo and completing their co-op program gave me crucial hands-on experience in technology early on in my career. My education helped me realize the impact that technology can have on improving access to healthcare and therefore patient outcomes. I am so grateful for the education I received at University of Waterloo; I know I wouldn’t be where I am today without it!
Have you encountered any roadblocks along the way that were related to your gender?
I wouldn’t say that I have encountered roadblocks along the way. However, I think as a gender, women are generally underestimated, specifically when it comes to our understanding of technology. I specifically found this to be true early in my career when I was starting up as a software developer. Most people are quite shocked when they learn that I graduated with a computer science degree from Waterloo. I used to share this in passing just so they’d start taking me seriously!
What unique characteristics or perspective do you feel you bring to your organization as a woman?
As a woman who has worked in the HealthTech industry for over 16 years, I understand firsthand how hard it can be to plan for and grow your family while pursuing your career. Building a career is an emerging industry like HealthTech is no easy feat – it takes time, ambition, and sacrifices when it comes to spending time with your family. Pursuing your career can be especially challenging for new caregivers who are navigating parenthood for the first time.