Professional Development

How I Got Here: Avi Raghupathy reinvents himself as the technology field changes

The director of engineering at Comcast on what it takes to have a lasting career in the industry.

Avi Raghupathy.

(Courtesy photo)

Avi Raghupathy says he has to reinvent himself every six or seven years.

“By reinvent, I mean having to change the core tech space that I’m working in,” he told Technical.ly. “I’ve switched industry domains to keep challenging myself.”

He started with databases, moved to Java development, then low-code business process management, and now cloud engineering as a director at Comcast.

Raghupathy was born in India and moved to Australia as a child. He attended Saint Joseph’s University where he earned his master’s of science in computer science. Before Comcast, he counted roles at the likes of AmeriHealth Caritas, AIG and eBay Enterprise.

Raghupathy’s experience represents a commonly uncommon path among tech pros. As technology develops, so do the jobs and people within the business. The ever-changing products and new positions require movement from one area to another, sometimes from a now-dated practice to a newer one. This migration is what Raghupathy finds consistent about his jobs and time in the industry.

In reflecting on his career path, he wishes someone would have told him to “lean in and not be afraid to voice my technical opinion,” as he put it. Now, he is leading a team at Comcast and developing processes for innovation, which he said has been deeply rewarding.

So why is he sharing his story?

“In the hope that others can come out of their shell,” he said, “and start to make their presence felt and play important roles shaping organizational policy and strategy.”

Below, he answered Technical.ly’s questions about his career path and offers advice for future technologists.

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What is your earliest memory or experience with technology?

My earliest memory of technology is from Sydney, Australia in 1984 and being in the first grade. We had gone over to another family’s house for dinner and their son, who was quite a bit older than me, had his computer open and was playing a game where he had to appropriately set the height of a pole vaulter to make a jump through a gap in the wall. I was completely transfixed!

What’s most exciting to you about your work now?

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The most exciting thing about my work now is finding ways to get my team to innovate. Innovation is central to everything I am passionate about at work and developing a process for innovation has been extremely rewarding. I was in a workshop about seven years ago on innovation and that’s when I was first introduced to the topic. I feel like I have had to develop my leadership skills to get to my current role. I place a lot of emphasis on servant leadership.

What’s your advice for others looking to get into this field or position? 

Technology as a field has always been good to me. I highly recommend it to anyone looking for job stability, flexibility, and a constantly evolving space. I strongly encourage engineers to pursue leadership positions as well. Combining a strong technical voice with good leadership skills is a great way to shape tech strategy.

Why do you want to share your story?

As an immigrant to the United States I spent many years being shy and introverted and not making my voice heard. I think by nature I am an outgoing introvert. I’m sharing my story in the hope that others can come out of their shell and start to make their presence felt and play important roles shaping organizational policy and strategy.

Any passions outside of tech that give you inspiration?

Outside of work these days I find my inspiration developing an appreciation for the arts. I started my journey late with art history, but it has been a rewarding one. I am also passionate about refereeing high school football. I have been at it for 14 years and working with student athletes is such a powerful experience.

Companies: Comcast
Series: How I Got Here
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