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Unusual career growth tips for working women in India, based on the idea that sometimes, disruption can be a good thing.
By Anne John
Disruptions are often viewed as negative occurrences in our lives. As working women in India who are hard pressed for time, most of us strive hard to keep our professional as well as personal lives as stable as possible, free of disruption. But can disruptions actually aid career growth for women? Can they benefit us so much so that we voluntarily choose to disrupt ourselves?
Whitney Johnson, Co-Founder of Rose Park Advisors and the author of Dare, Dream, Do advocates that disruptions can be useful to our careers. In this podcast with Dr.Tanvi Gautam, Managing Partner at Global Tree, Johnson encourages us to go ahead and disrupt ourselves in order to achieve our dreams.
I listened to the podcast and here are the key career growth tips for women that I gleaned from the talk. If you like this, do go to the link above and listen to the podcast yourself.
Disruption is of special significance to working women in India who are considering a career change as well as those professionals who nurture an entrepreneurial dream. Disrupting yourself and shaking up your personal belief system will push you out of your comfort zone, test your limits and will help you learn more about yourself.
1. Identify a gap that needs to be bridged: According to Johnson, “…a disrupter looks for needs that are not being met well, in places where no one is playing.” It becomes obvious that this is the first step in disrupting ourselves when we look at examples of successful women entrepreneurs in India. Entrepreneurs usually get a seed idea for their business when they notice that a particular product or service is missing – and they decide to plug that gap.
For instance, when Women’s Web Founder Aparna Vedapuri Singh realized that although there were loads of women’s magazines available in India, most concentrated on beauty or fashion and few actually catered to the average working woman; and so she decided to launch Women’s Web to fill that gap. Similarly, while working abroad, Dr.Sumitha Nayak had to undergo rigorous training in safety procedures. This made her recognize the lack of such corporate safety practices in India and she went on to launch her own safety training and audit company over here.
This gap need not just be external ones – it can be internal too. Perhaps you feel that your creative skills are not being utilized well enough in your current job or career. Whether internal or external, identifying this gap as well as opportunities to bridge it will help you disrupt yourself.
2. Identify your area of expertise in which you are better than most: Johnson states, “(Disrupters)… don’t just look at what they do well but they look at what they do well that others can’t.” It is indeed important to identify your unique ability. For instance, let’s say that you do a lovely job at organizing events at work and are hence pondering about starting an event management company. However, there are loads of event organizers who are already out there, with an established list of clients and who are much ahead of you. Therefore it is essential to think about what difference you can bring in. Perhaps as a working mother in India, you are familiar with the challenges that working mothers face. Building on your event management skills and your knowledge of working mothers could allow you to launch a more unique service for working mothers, incorporating their needs.
3. Do not delay disrupting yourself: Often, we create our own obstacles when chasing our dreams. We point to lack of time, expectations from others or insufficient funds as excuses for not following our dreams.
Disrupting ourselves means facing our inner demons and that can scare us. If you are too afraid to let go or think that you cannot afford to, try disrupting yourself in a small way first. As Johnson suggests, you could explore your dreams while still holding onto your anchor. For instance, if you work as a marketing professional but dream of becoming a writer “someday”, you could still work on your dream by say, starting a blog, when eventually a day will come when your dream has grown strong enough to help you disrupt yourself. After all, as Johnson says beautifully, we are the gatekeepers of our dreams.
Have you ever disrupted yourself in your professional life? What did it teach you? Do share your career growth tips for working women in India!
Reminder: To hear the complete podcast, please go here.
*Photo credit: Tiago Padua (Used under the Creative Commons Attribution License.)
Anne John plays with words for a living and would probably do the same even
A succinct post of encouragement . Have tried it by replying .. a point from ” do not delay…” 🙂
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