Career stories: Taking LinkedIn Engineering to Tel Aviv
January 31, 2023
A mom of three, military veteran, and former white-hat hacker, Eynav joined LinkedIn through the acquisition of the marketing analytics startup, Oribi. Now as the engineering leader behind our new LinkedIn Tel Aviv office, she shares more about the transition, building our engineering team in Israel, and creating opportunities for women in engineering:
Throughout my career, I gravitated towards both coding and helping other engineers excel in their roles. As I developed my skills, I realized that I desired to be a leader for other engineers, supporting their development and future success.
From white-hat hacking to LinkedIn leadership
After LinkedIn acquired Oribi, where I was the VP of R&D, I’ve been provided with a lot of opportunities to expand my role and responsibilities— which includes leading and building our engineering community here in the newly established LinkedIn Tel Aviv office as an engineering director.
My career started somewhat unconventionally as a white-hat hacker — someone who ethically hacks into a system to expose security issues and help organizations safeguard against cybersecurity threats. I started self-learning many technologies, including early versions of Android and iOS, and evolved my knowledge and interests into a full–fledged career. I jumped at the opportunity to join Cisco when a job opened under its Chief Technology Officer to develop new initiatives.
My path wasn’t straightforward, though — I started honing my skills in mobile, backend, and the cloud world. As I became more confident in my experience, I began to take on new opportunities that combined my love of engineering with leading people and bringing change, like spearheading projects as a tech lead. My management expertise has helped me grow into leading my first international engineering team here at LinkedIn.
From a company of a few dozen to 20,000+
Moving from a small startup of a few dozen in Tel Aviv to a large company of 20,000+ in 30+ cities worldwide was an adjustment. LinkedIn has more people and processes than I did in my previous role and when in a big company, it can take more time to make an impact.
My main challenge was keeping the team highly engaged throughout all the changes we experienced as a fast-growing startup merging into a large tech company. LinkedIn has been incredibly supportive throughout the transition.
Building our LinkedIn Tel Aviv office
From day one of the acquisition, I was there making sure we established the whole foundation of the team at LinkedIn. Building a strong team is all about creating one unit with great teamwork, good collaboration, and people who are very open to feedback and who freely share knowledge. There should be no fear of expressing opinions or experiencing new technologies. As we grew as a team, we tried to keep that spirit of cohesiveness at the center.
Now, I am an engineering director at LinkedIn Tel Aviv, where we just opened a new office in Israel. I lead engineering teams in Tel Aviv and the U.S. as part of our LinkedIn Marketing Solutions Intelligent Signals team. We create and manage all the external signals and link the elements used to empower data and algorithms, to determine how best we can provide products for our customers.
Making space for women engineers
The most important thing I look for in the people I work with is curiosity, as I believe this quality helps people quickly succeed in their roles. As engineers, we ask many questions and look deep into the data, results, and code. Good engineers are not just “troubleshooting people”— they are researchers who are constantly curious and ask many questions.
My passion for developing engineering talent inspired me to become a co-founder/co-director of the Women in Big Data branch in Israel. I’m a strong advocate for helping women and underrepresented groups in engineering. Currently, we have three female engineers in Israel along with me, which is a number that I intend to grow.
Every time we look to add to the team, I feel a responsibility to draw from a pool that includes women and other underrepresented groups. If I interview a woman who isn’t the right fit for the role, I try to use the balance of the conversation to help her better position herself for the next opportunity.
Being an ambassador
I often feel like I’m an ambassador. Recently, I spoke with a woman in tech who was very talented. As a single mother, she had doubts about finding flexibility in the role; this was the first thing she touched on in our interview.
She had an impressive resume, and I helped her reframe why she was great for the role. Although the engineering community needs to become more inclusive, I’m thankful that my role at LinkedIn gives me opportunities to connect with female engineers and help them along in their career journeys.
Based in Tel Aviv, Israel, Eynav is an engineering director with our LinkedIn Marketing Solutions team. Before joining LinkedIn via an acquisition, she held various full-stack, mobile, and infrastructure engineering and leadership roles at Cisco Systems, Perfecto, and Oribi (now part of LinkedIn).
Eynav is also a military veteran, having served as an information systems company commander; and is a co-founder/director of the Women in Big Data branch. She holds a bachelor’s in computer science from Hadassah College Jerusalem. In her free time, Eynav enjoys gardening, reading leadership books, and spending time with her family.
Editor’s note: Considering an engineering/tech career at LinkedIn? In this Career Stories series, you’ll hear first-hand from our engineers and technologists about real life at LinkedIn — including our meaningful work, collaborative culture, and transformational growth. For more on tech careers at LinkedIn, visit: lnkd.in/EngCareers.