Rising Star Awards: What happened next for Kanika Selvan

Kanika Selvan

WeAreTheCity’s Rising Star Awards are now in their tenth year.

The Rising Star Awards are the first to focus on the achievements of women below Senior Management or Director level – representing the female talent pipeline and the next generation of future leaders.

In this ongoing series, we speak to our winners about life after winning a Rising Star award.

We spoke to Kanika Selvan, who won a Rising Star Champion Award in 2022.

Kanika works to a tech for good mission, empowering her clients to make decisions that unlock the benefits of technology for their organisation. She has worked across multiple sectors, from energy retail and telecoms to higher education, housing associations, social enterprises, tech start-ups and small charities, adapting to different workplace cultures, drivers and practices. She combines her cross-sector adaptability with her background in leading both technical change and people change, offering a holistic perspective that considers the business, infrastructure, data and applications. She is also a professional speaker and a board member, creating thought leadership and championing diversity and inclusion on topics such as change, technology, leadership, and innovation.

How did winning a Rising Star award influence your perception of your own achievements and potential?

Rising Star was in the Award Category of ‘Champion’. It was fantastic to both be nominated and then to win the award within the category. It helped me to recognise that the work that I had been doing, because I saw a lack of equity, made a difference to others. I hadn’t realized that the collection of areas I showed passion for could be a potential career change for me. It supported me to make the leap to becoming self employed and shift my focus to more tech-for-good values projects. I won this award when I was very unsure of my capability and potential, it was a time of transition. I couldn’t have asked for the push at a better time.

Have there been specific opportunities or doors that opened for you as a result of receiving the award?

I gained a new network and a bunch of new connections. I have come to realise that the recognition of these awards, it nothing in comparison to the community it creates between like-minded ambitious people, with a social mission. It was fantastic to connect and build opportunities, throw around ideas and be energized by the other winners and nominated folks.

Have you had the chance to mentor or inspire others based on your experience?

I have chosen to mentor a few others in the industry, but a lot of my sharing is about linking In with others who are considering walking a similar path. Starting out being self employed, running a business, getting into tech… I love to collaborate and buy services from others that are coming up. It feels like a more equitable way of sharing opportunities. I am also part of Manchesters first Women In Tech [Unfiltered] conference which starts in 2024. The first intersectional women in tech conference, led by a woman in tech. Amazing to be sharing the reach of all this work.

What advice would you give to someone else thinking of nominating themselves or others for the awards?

Go for it, its always an incredible thing to recognise another person, or to put yourself forward. Humility isn’t actually a winning practice, that’s all a lie. We need to shout about our achievements because only you should be telling your story.

What advice do you have for individuals aspiring to achieve success in their careers?

Its always a good thing to have a vision of where you want to go, but my best advice would be to never underestimate how far ahead you will be if you take up opportunities that come left of field, if you get up when you fail and you continue taking small incremental steps forward. One day you will realise that you have surpassed your vision and now you have another one.

What is next for you?

Specialism not expansion. Beetroot Consulting has been running for almost 2 years now. We work with SME’s and Higher Education and will continue to build out our community, demystifying technology. Its all a focus on building our our group of associates so that we can help organisations to get control of their technical eco-system, so that they can deliver social value.

Its likely that the future is more collaborations, more testing out of new things and helping organisations with tools, coaching and tech change delivery.

Where can others follow you?

They can follow me and the work of Beetroot Consulting on Linked in or TikTok @beetrootconsultingltd

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