Medianews4u.com’s effort acknowledging women leaders of the Media, Marketing and Advertising fraternity has received an over-whelming response from all the readers.
Presenting to you Women leaders from DAN India, who share their experiences of breaking the gender stereotypes and how they continue to inspire many other women who are true leaders in the making.
Siddhi Dholakia, New Business Director, C Lab
Professionally, we are in a “so-called” male dominated space. Women have to work twice as hard, juggle many roles to prove herself and make revenues for the organization. As a woman you are constantly being empathetic to all parties and being creative in closing every deal in a unique way. Both personal & professional struggles goes hand in hand.
Personally, my baby boy was 5 months old and it was time to return to work. The daily travel time was 3 hours. I was feeding, pumping and feeling extremely exhausted. It took enormous effort to get up early, manage all the chores, say goodbye to my baby boy and just get to my desk.
In one particular instance, there were tight deadlines of 7 days from initiation to execution on an IPL association that required to take a flight to Delhi in the 8th month of pregnancy. Not only did the campaign do well but also exceeded client expectations. Not only was it a very tough moment for me but also the most memorable. This kind of balanced fighting spirit rubs on to everyone in the team. Employees learn to support each other. Everyone learns to stay in the moment and focus on what is in front.
All that you see which is human work on this planet, first found expression in the mind. Then got manifested in the outside world.
So if we are concerned about what we create in our lives, it is extremely important that we create the right things in our minds vividly and clearly.
If we do not have the power to keep our minds the way we want, what we create in the world will also be very accidental and haphazard.
From my personal experience, I found yoga and meditation really helpful & energizing in my life. It helped me accomplish big & small goals. For this you to need first write down your professional, personal & learning goals. It gives clarity of thought. A clouded mind with no direction is a miserable situation.
Lekshmi Krishnan, New Business Director, InDeed
A moment of success that I remember with great pride is when, during the stint at my previous organization, the client personally called me to convey that they had decided to award – what was arguably the largest CSR drinking water project in the country and probably the world – to us. While I was the lead for the project, I was representing the David in the David & Goliath story – a young, lightly-staffed organization, competing with a hundred other companies, including well established giants. In the end, we surprised everyone, including ourselves. There were many occasions during the difficult and rigorous selection process (that lasted over six months) and the subsequent execution phase when I felt overwhelmed and despondent, but I was able to constantly re-instill conviction and belief in the team and my ‘nothing to lose so nothing to fear’ attitude kept them going. And the big learning for me from this episode was that if you aim for something big and really want it badly …you will make it happen!
One, personal integrity, honesty and commitment are highly valued qualities and clients will choose to work with you if they have faith in you as an individual…no matter how small or young your organization. This has been especially true for me at Indeed, a relatively young division within Dentsu Aegis Network.
Two, make your own rules. This is something I truly subscribe to, both in my professional and personal life. I’ve been fortunate to have traversed multiple and diverse fields, from consumer market research to development sector implementation to CSR advisory & consulting. Whether business or parenting, when facing new and uncharted areas, the best way to navigate is often to create your own way. Use your own past experience (whatever field it be), trust your instincts, and forge your own path.
Geeta Suthar, Co-Founder, COO, CBO, Fractal Ink Design Studio Linked by Isobar
Design as a business has a very low entry barrier and we saw dozens of design houses setting up shop in the last 2 – 3 years. This put a strain on the rates that our clients were willing to pay – while the costs kept increasing due to a shortage of talent. We decided to look overseas for projects. It was tempting, and it would have been easy to play the ‘low cost’ game in the west- there is plenty of work and an established model of working and we could have acquired clients very quickly. But thinking about a long-term strategy led to the decision to go after markets like Africa and the Middle East that had a paucity of local talent and had high regard for Indian design. It took us a little time, but in the last 2 years, we have signed-up long term ‘Digital Transformation’ projects in geographies like Mauritius, South Africa, Kenya, Dubai and Egypt. This has led to us being the only design company that is able to provide international ‘on the ground’ exposure to our team.
Listen well – To clients, to partners and to co-workers. If you truly listen, you will hear and understand things that are not obvious. You learn to read between the lines and that helps to address problems before they even come up. It gives you the opportunity to do things right and come out the winner.
Have clarity in thought and action – A lot of times we make decisions based on instinct, and while that works sometimes, take the time to process your instincts and understand the reasons for your actions. This helps bring clarity to your thoughts and logic to your actions.
- Lead by example – Don’t expect the team to do anything that you have not done or will not do yourself. The easiest way to win over a team is to lead them by example.
- Be humble – Ego so often comes in way of making good decisions. Check the ego and bring it down a few notches. No one can always be right, and others can have better ideas and solutions. Be a team player yourself.
- Build relationships- Building relationships is the key to growth and stands a leader in good stead when the going gets tough – which will definitely happen at some point in every leaders’ career.