Since a young age I always wanted to be “Lady Sundar Pichai”. As for anyone who asked about my aspirations for the future, my only answer was that I want to be the female version of Sundar Pichai. At the age of 15, I knew I wanted to become a management Consultant and CEO. And ever since, I have been very passionate about my career. While it is not a very popular opinion, personal life is secondary for me, also because I love what I do and hence I can do it literally any day. I have never said no to work even if I am asked to work round the clock, because I value hard work as I have evidently witnessed the power of it.
Initially, I thought pursuing a Master in Science in International Management will lead me to a high-end marketing job. Honestly, I thought of it as a ‘fair enough’ career option for myself. Settling and working in Ireland sounded intriguing enough – a life many Indians desire to live. But something inside of me struggled to suffice with this idea. I always felt that I looked at things the entrepreneurial way and while Marketing at an MNC gave me all the perks, the realisation that my heart wanted to be the Lady Sunder Pichai, came to me in a formidable manner. It was demotivating at first, as I got rejected over 700 times in my attempt at getting a ‘good job’ until I realised that this rejection is my redirection to do things in the way I like them – on my own. Some said I am too ambitious, some thought I did not have the experience but I continued to learn and improve everyday. I learnt that it takes a certain level of intellectual quotient to be able to revive from a rough patch in life without taking a mental toll, and thus I carried on.
Sustainability had been the focal point for almost all my decisions, and I knew that whatever I chose, it would emerge from the center of being sustainably plunged. During my time in Ireland, I saw how people from across boundaries saw India. While our sustainability index talks for itself, they pictured India as an overpopulated labour class country with limited awareness of clean and cruelty-free living. Initially, it looked like an acute outsider picture, but I felt otherwise when I looked closely at the beauty industry. I reflected on my ideas and realised that many ‘big and luxury’ brands were learning to build clean, toxin-free, and cruelty-free products by formulating ingredients that have been in the Vedic sciences for as long as we have known the world to exist. In short, it looked like the world was facing a revival of ancient Indian remedies to save itself from deteriorating. I remember working on a project as part of my assignment where my idea was to create an innovative platform that would offer cruelty-free, clean beauty products curated and formulated by the ingredients found on our soil, ultimately effective for our skin types.
While I initially thought of setting up manufacturing for such products, my research helped me realize that there are already around 300 Indian clean beauty vendors in the market that are oblivious to the people. That right there was the ‘aha’ moment, and I decided to come to India and work on building a platform showcasing the naturally rich side of our country through education and businesses. I felt a trigger in my entrepreneurial spirit to turn the problem statement into an opportunity. It was a crucial moment in my life as I not only had a business plan to work upon, but that heavy feeling which could not suffice initially had dissipated.
I realised the importance of this process of discovering and rediscovering things about oneself to make ourselves open to new experiences and opinions in order to understand what we want. I also realized the value of wisdom in learning, as only a wise learner can learn from failures, multiple opinions and setbacks. I believe that the process can get on your nerves, but the nervousness could become your shield and your weapon to carve your niche.
Sudar Pichai said, “As a leader, it is important to not just see your success but focus on the success of others.” It hit me enough to understand that I should work on a model that uplifts others. Thus, making limitless out of the limited.
As I did, I established Root Natural, the first of its kind clean beauty platform for homegrown Indian brands with the aim of making skincare and personal wellness sustainable and affordable for all.
As a woman entrepreneur, I believe in partaking my knowledge by upskilling women to achieve financial freedom and breaking away from the typical stereotype of ‘women in India’. Since responsibility and freedom are inseparable, women have higher chances of developing an outlook toward life that can smash through brick walls.