Career Talkies 2019- Hack your Data Science career growth

Maragadamma R, Career Coach

21 February 2019 • 5 mins


Career Talkies 2019
Fireside + Q&A with some of the best people in the profession today
Belong, Bangalore

We hosted our second Data Science event themed “Career Talkies - Hack your Data Science career growth” on the 02 of Feb 2019 at Belong and we were thrilled!

You can watch the entire event on Youtube who missed it!

Our participants were majorly Data Scientists from Google, Target, Western Union, HackerRank, Harman and so on. The event was all about how one can accelerate their career in data science and leaned a bit more towards tech related to solving problems and getting 80% accuracy.

We had Dr. Madhu Gopinathan - VP Data Science at MakeMyTrip and Ekta Grover - Architect at InMobi as our guest speakers. The event started with our CTO - Vinodh Kumar Ravindranath talking about the early days of Data Science and the businesses/domains that use it.

**_ Did you know what was the first ever application/business built on top of Data Science? – The answer is “ The Gambling Business”. The first Data Scientist being “Shakuni” during the Mahabharata. :)

Vinodh spoke about the most used skills in the industry using algorithms like LDA, Gibbs Sampling Algorithm.

Panel Q & A Discussion

Our CTO started off by asking a couple of questions to our guest speakers and audiences were pretty excited and were ready with their questions!

Should I pursue a higher degree like a Masters or Ph.D.? Broadly, yes.
Dr. Madhu mentioned 2 pieces of critical advice given to him by his mentor:
1) Learn Math.
2) Work with someone young who is open to new ideas.

“There are 2 things, one is for yourself and another one is for outside world” – Madhu

“I failed my econometric course, which today is my bread & butter. The accidents, like higher degree, also signal what works and doesn’t for you” – Ekta Grover.

Is higher education the only alternative to career growth?
Vinodh answers
No, several of my mates have grown with Google and did not do a Ph.D.

“The key idea is to learn, study, build and keep doing things.
You can do this in higher ed or in the industry” -

How does a data scientist build business domain expertise?
Ekta answers with these 3 tips
1) Pick interesting problems
2) Invest in being understood by non-tech and tech folk
3) Package your value and pitch as per audience

How do you handle “less data” problems?
Madhu give 3 simple answers to solve this problem and they are:
1) Generate synthetic data via up-sampling or simulation
2) Convince sponsors to get you more data by demo-ing value
3) Hack by retooling existing data e.g. using email to mock chat data mentions

Will Data Science jobs be automated in the next few years?
Madhu says - Not till machines learn to ask valuable and good questions.
That is our primary defensible skill: Asking good questions!

Vinodh wrap up the session by sharing his key takeaways and saying “we must never stop learning” :)