Nilesh Balakrishnan

Class Year: 
2016
Job Title / Company: 
Corporate Development Manager, Soroco

Duke MEM in three words: Inspirational, expansive, transformational

What type of organization is Soroco?
Soroco is a growing startup company that uses artificial intelligence and machine meaning to increase operational efficiency via automation. We’re hiring, by the way!

What does your role as corporate development manager involve?
I work directly with the founder and the CEO on scaling the business from a small startup to a rapidly growing company. This means that I’m involved in all aspects of the business – from operations, business development, and product road maps to hiring and training.

How has your Duke MEM degree influenced your career so far?
The MEM degree was the perfect bridge for me to move from a technical engineering background to a business role. My Duke experience helped instill in me an appreciation and familiarity with strategy, finance, and overarching business dynamics.

What was your favorite part of your MEM experience?
Making lifelong friends and learning more about the world through the diverse, eclectic mix of students in the program were definitely highlights of my experience.

Do you have any advice for students currently in the program?
I would suggest that current students try to gain as much from the experience as they can. It’s important for students to challenge themselves and try things that may not seem like a good fit. They’ll be amazed by how much they can grow and change.

Do you have any regrets about your time at Duke?
I wish I would have attended ALL of the basketball games. It’s criminal that I missed out on two games.

What’s great about being a Duke alumnus?
Being able to tell everyone that my school plays better ball than theirs.