Read on how to enrich your life by purpose, i.e. to find depth and, a reason to get out of bed each morning, your own Ikigai.
Aaradhee Mehta’s BUY STORIES helps brands and their stories resonate with customers. In this series on women entrepreneurs, she shares with us a day in her life.
By Aaradhee Mehta
When I started off on my own and announced that it would be a home office, I was told very often about how it takes tons of discipline to work from home. I am still given that kind of feedback when I tell someone I took a short nap this afternoon.
I quit my very interesting job at a major fashion retail house in Mumbai on 15th Feb 2013 and ever since I have been a ‘work from home business woman.’
Frankly, it has been the best decision I made. As a start-up consultant I could not afford to rent out an office and honestly I don’t even need one; not until I grow a team. It has been 6 months and I have a strict routine of 6 AM mornings, a kettle full of green tea, the newspaper and then off to work by 6:30 AM. One can only imagine how productive our brain is when it hasn’t been through the pressure of travel to reach your cabin in an office. Whatever time it is.
It’s a tough job and I love it to bits.
It’s a tough job and I love it to bits.
I have always been an early riser and I would be in office at 9 AM but my brain was never as productive as it is now that I don’t have to go through the morning routine of ‘what am I going to wear, what’s the time, should I try another route, what’s the time, hope the toll person gives me change, what’s the time, why isn’t the elevator here, what’s the time’ nonsense.
One does have to get out for client meetings but I try and set them up post noon. If not, I miss my 6 to12 work hours and that is depressing.
6 AM to noon are my favourite work hours. Yes, I skip breakfast and have an early brunch and early dinner and early to bed and early to rise. It makes me an early person. And I am certain this routine is working towards bringing early success to my business.
I have been in the business of Customer Experience Management or CEM for the last 7 years and I still have to explain the concept to atleast 2 people (without exaggeration) a day. The part about maintaining patience to do this each day is my biggest challenge.
The discipline has 2% believers, 40% non-believers and 58% fence sitters and my job is to push these guys towards becoming believers by way of Proof Of Concept or POC.
Customer Experience, Shopper Marketing, Shopper Insights are concepts that are currently into play in the business mix. Here is what we are saying at BUY STORIES:
1. We are requesting businesses to take a step back and get a holistic look at what the customer is talking about their business.
2. Weigh the good/bad repercussions of these customer conversations on the brand and take necessary action.
3. Identify an insight/narrative that will inspire the change you desire.
4. Alter the mix to tell and retell a story that resonates emotionally, till it becomes the customer’s truth.
That ‘The Taj Chain of hotels is the benchmark for service in the hospitality industry’, is a story that we have all come to believe as the truth. It has to be an outcome of consistent effort on the part of all stakeholders. They worked towards planting small to large conversations to emphasize this story.
So our request to clients is to define the desired change, work with us to identify an inspiring story and then let us use Customer Experience and Shopper Marketing strategies to tell these stories.
It’s a tough job and I love it to bits. Somedays I am up till 3 AM in order to complete an assignment.
The only drawback of working alone from a home office as I see today is that I do not have a bouncing board. I need to bounce ideas in my own head or sometime pick up the phone and disclose my precious ideas to people who’d understand but are also likely to steal them.
All said and done, I love my home office. And a small piece of advice, if I may, is to start your day early. Get atleast 2 hours of your work done in the early morning and watch how much time you have left to do MORE productive work.
Are you a woman running a business in India? Would you like your story to appear in our Day In The Life Of An Entrepreneur series? Email us at admin AT womensweb DOT in with an interesting account of a day running your business, and we may publish it! (For example, what was the one interesting thing you did that day? Did you meet someone new/had a conversation with a customer? What thrills you at work? What are some business challenges you’re currently grappling with?) Also send us a few pictures of you at work – with your team, at your desk, at the factory, meeting a customer….
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Loved the advice at the end-If only i could wake up a bit early, mornings wouldnt be so stressful as it currently is!
Totally agree with you – I am way more productive without the commute! AND I get my afternoon siesta – what more do I need?
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