Apps that Drive Change: Q&A with Vilas Rao7 months ago -
Creating cohesive teams and digital tools that impact the seed industry is at the heart of what Vilas Rao, The Climate Corporation vice president of strategy, focuses on daily.
Seed World: Favorite film?
Vilas Rao: “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.” With Spielberg, Lucas, Ford, Connery and the ultimate MacGuffin, it’s hard to beat.
SW: No. 1 travel destination?
VR: Nepal. It’s where I got my start in agriculture — breathtaking scenery and amazing people.
SW: You never travel without …
VR: Running shoes.
SW: Favorite app?
VR: FieldView! Then Pocket for saving things to read.
SW: How do you create cohesive teams while working in two cities?
VR: First, if your team believes in the mission and knows the strategy, their mandate and the tools at their disposal, very little handholding is needed. That’s not quite enough, though. Having people you enjoy working with is one of the biggest drivers of job satisfaction, so it’s important to bring distributed teams together or give them vehicles to get to know each other personally.
SW: What in the digital space has the most potential to impact the seed industry?
VR: Thanks to digital tools, we’ll be able to better understand and demonstrate how seeds and other crop inputs perform head-to-head in real-world conditions, not just on structured field trials. That is going to drive better product performance and minimize the risk of technology adoption for growers.
SW: What one thing would you like to change or improve about Climate FieldView?
VR: Keep expanding our compatibility, our ease of use and the breadth of our insights to growers.
SW: What has surprised you most about working for farmers?
VR: I’ll never stop being surprised by the entrepreneurial ingenuity of farmers. I check out #FieldView regularly to see how farmers use our tech, and it’s in ways we never expected.