Aizhan Konuspayeva

Aizhan joined envelio in September 2021 as a working student for Visual Design.
Working in the Product Department, she creates product designs and supports the marketing team in creating corporate designs. In her free time, she enjoys doing all sorts of art-related activities, like drawing, sculpting, calligraphy, as well as playing video games. Before she came to Germany, Aizhan lived in Kazakhstan, where she studied Graphic Design. After completing her studies, she decided to move to Cologne to get a second bachelor’s degree in Game Design.
We interviewed Aizhan to find out more about her work at envelio.

Did you consciously choose to work in the energy industry, even though you could do your job in other industries as well?
Prior to envelio, I already had working experience specializing in visual design with similar responsibilities and tasks. However, I worked mostly in advertising companies, and working in a tech company was a completely new experience. I was looking for a job, where I could apply experience from earlier jobs as well as the knowledge I receive during my current studies. When I saw envelio’s job advertisement on LinkedIn, I was very interested and excited. The overall idea of working in the field of renewable energies was appealing to me as well.

How were women represented in your educational background?
I think, among artists and designers there is a tendency to have all genders represented equally. That’s how it seemed to me during my graphic design studies. However, right now in my bachelor’s program ‘Digital Games’ it feels like there are
slightly more men, especially among game developers.

Before you moved to Germany you lived in Kazakhstan. Was it a big adjustment when you moved here?
I visited Germany a couple of times before, but being a tourist and living here for a longer period are completely different things. The global pandemic did not make it easier. But I like the fact, that I still discover new things almost every day. They can be related to traditions, culture and, of course, language. It is not easy, but I am trying my best to learn German. One important thing is the differences in educational approach – in German universities, students have more freedom. Kazakh education keeps some elements of Soviet Legacy, it may be stricter, and students feel the hierarchy in student / professor communication. In Germany interaction with tutors and professors is easier, it is less official.

How do you come into contact with tech topics?
As a member of the Product Department, I regularly get in touch with tech during our meetings. It can be a little bit intimidating to hear all the tech terminology, but my supervisor Nikita patiently answers all my questions and does an excellent job, explaining the terminologies and functions in comprehendible language. Other colleagues of mine are also incredibly open to questions and discussions. This additional knowledge helps a lot, for example, when I need to visualize functions of the Intelligent Grid Platform in illustrations or icons.
How would you describe the corporate culture at envelio?
The corporate culture at envelio is truly diverse and welcoming. There are employees with diverse backgrounds, from various countries, and all of them are open to meeting new people and finding out new things. Despite my shy
personality, I really like working from the office, when I have the chance. It is nice to chat with people during my lunch break or at events.

What have you been able to learn from your experiences in a tech company?
Working in a tech environment was a completely new experience for me. It is very interesting to see how product managers and engineers work – how new products and features are being developed. Since I learned about user experience (UX) design and user interfaces (UI design) in university, I am excited to see how this theoretical knowledge can be applied. In addition to the technical knowledge, I learned a lot about team structures and how different departments work together.

What must change for more women to succeed in tech?
Qualifications should be more important than gender. Women must be treated equal. It is very inspiring to see strong women in technical professions. I also see a tendency that nowadays girls are motivated to pursue careers in engineering, there are so many bright female students I know. I really hope that the next generations will also be encouraged to follow this path.

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