Alternative Career – 3 Tips To Help You Find Your Big Idea

Alternative careers - Image of 4 bulbs and one glowing bulb.... What's Your Big Idea

Image credit: Freepik All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them. – Walt Disney I still remember this incident which happened few years back, I was single then and one of my colleagues questioned me about my vision for the upcoming years. I smiled and replied him back that I wouldn’t be a part of any MNC and I would land up in some other work which will quench my thirst of being creative. Then he popped up his next question “So you are planning to quit and stay at home or do you have any other plans?” My vision was clear but I had no answers for what’s next? I worked till I availed my maternity break and I broke my relationship with corporate once my leave got exhausted. Friends and well wishers called me often to lift my spirit of getting back to work. I made few attempts to get any work at home projects but I failed to meet the employer’s expectations. At a moment I felt an internal pressure of losing all my confidence. My life changed completely in next following months and my daughter kept me busy around the clock because I was her only care taker. I wonder how fortunate daily waged women are. Despite the low salary she has a liberty to carry her kids to her work place and she can manage both of her roles (worker & mother) with so much grace and no guilt […]

A life not so extra-ordinary may not necessarily be an unfulfilled one…

Image of happy family - Life is All About Balance

Image Courtesy: Freepik About a decade ago, I was happily living my life in Bangalore. The city has everything that a 20 something could ask for. Moving from Mumbai, the city was much more affordable, it has a cosmopolitan outlook, lot of places to hang out and the city was safer for women than say Delhi. Yes, I was not growing professionally but other than that life was as happy as it could be. I was at peace with myself and my surroundings. To top it all I had a lovely apartment with a balcony overlooking a beautiful garden and a swimming pool. A Mumbaikar can not ask for more. Just as I was thanking the Gods above for the life I was living, the Gods played a cruel joke and sent across a job offer from London. Everything about the London based job was exactly what I was looking for: reputed organization, global role, growth and opportunity to be trained and to work with the best. However, those were only the pros, the cons were going away from friends and family, living in a city with one of the highest cost of living in the world, a place where you will always be an immigrant and a culture that you have to make an effort to get used to. When we are young we don’t necessarily understand the importance of the cushion of family (immediate and extended) and close friends in our life. We assume we can take everything […]

Stop Second-Guessing Your Decision of Taking a Career Break

On a career break? Stop second guessing your decision. Image of a woman unable to make up her mind

Image Courtesy: globomax.hu If I were to interview you and ask ‘Describe what you went through when you took a career break to take care of your child?’ Where would you start? Do you start with how your ambitions got axed due to factors beyond your control? Or how you miss talking about your field of work with an adult? Or why you even bothered to study so much when eventually you had to give up everything you ever worked so hard for? OR Do you start with how meaningfully you have impacted the lives of your kid(s)? Or how you have been able to provide your kid(s) a strong foundation and inculcate in them the right values for life? Or how you have been able and willing to forgo your career to give them your best personal care and quality time? You may probably respond with a jumble of these. And rightly so, since women give up a significant career or the prospect of having one when they quit in order to take care of kids or family. Let’s face it – we belong to a generation that is bogged by opportunities and the abounding choices only make our decisions tougher. We are educated enough to dream and pursue ambitions, yet many of us voluntarily take a step back to be able to nurture a growing child to our satisfaction. This paradox of choice is bound to plague us. What we need to do is acknowledge that these feeling […]

Money…..Matters!

Image Courtesy: eharmony A smile, a clap, a beautiful thought or a friendly gesture…..these are some of the the best things in life that are free. For everything there is a price tag attached. A dream of achieving  goal, an ambition of becoming someone, a tourist destination that is worth every penny, an asset that people would envy, a luxury that only few can afford. Money does matter!!!! But it always does not have to seem like a burden. The number of hours one can work and earn is limited but the number of ways in which money can be planned and spent is unlimited. Money comes and goes. However, Finance is what keeps track of money being earned and spent.   Saving v/s Spending: Investment is a kind of money saving technique. When a substantial amount of money is locked for a particular cause for few years, the assurance of that chunk not being spent is there. And it can further be used in future if required. Often investment in property, real estate, land, funds are good ways of stocking up money.  When it comes to spending, there are no clear rules.  Because what may seem a costly luxury to one, would be a simple item for the other.  But it would be good to follow a simple motto “Every penny saved is every penny earned”. So, spending wisely and as much as needed is a simple way of saving too.   Financial independence v/s Financially independent: Financial independence […]

A Shark In A Fish Tank

Shark in a fish tank - drawing of a shark going after a little fish

Image Courtesy: Drawception Really, A Shark!!! My God …Poor Fishes. Similar is the reaction when I want to take up a Job. Poor kids, what will happen to them? How about house responsibilities, husband.. Who will take care?   Well, who should take care when a women goes to work? How should she manage? Is marriage a curse to career or career a curse to marriage? Do we enjoy marriage more or career more? Which is more important? What is the priority? How should I decide? Relax Ladies…Relax!! We cannot answer for everyone, we can only answer apt to our lives.   Since ages nurturing and caring has been part of women persona. Is it her true nature, might be. But mainly inculcated through social norms and psychological manipulations. We blindly take it as our duty because we see it in women around us. However there is no rules and regulations for duties of a women, wife, and mother. It’s all about how much you involve.   So how much should we actually involve? Those who really manage home know that it’s never ending job. The more you are at home the more work you have to do. So where should I stop? Now, there comes Mr Shark….. Introduce small shark to your lives to know when to stop. If you introduce a small shark in the Fish tank… All the fishes are active and fresh (for if they relax the Shark will find an opportunity to gulp them up). […]

Blogging Insights

Board reading - blogging insights

Last blog of mine (All about blogging) might have given you nuances of Blogging. If you are very serious about diving into it then this post is for you. Where to Blog? During initial days create a page of your own in a free blogging websites like Blogger, WordPress, Tumblr, Livejournal  and so on. Each one of the sites has its own unique features. Learn about it and select the right choice. How to Blog? YouTube channels give you plenty of inputs on how to create your own blog and customize it according to your needs. Blogger– https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qa6MQxJOqv4 WordPress- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3BMe5dre9M0 Tumblr= https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f_dNxPFdzD0 LiveJournal- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A3owpQ7M9jM How to create a Fan Base? Despite how old you are into blogging make sure you write for other websites which accepts freelance writers to pour in thoughts. This helps you in building an audience base and enables them to trace your every move in the world of blogging. Sites that accepts guest blogging Communication is a major trump card in blogging. Once your post is live in portal, periodically address every comment or input left by the visiter.This helps you in building relationship with readers as well as gives a better understanding of the reader’s requirements. Don’t have any agenda while writing the more you make it simpler the higher would be the traffic. While writing quote some of your personal instance or mistakes that you have committed so that readers can relate it with them. How to Make Revenue? Blogging is into writing so […]

Miles To Go Before I Sleep… Goal Planning

Image courtesy: cpacareermentor “If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy and inspires your hopes.” —Andrew Carnegie A goal is not an end, but a means to an end. As humans, we are insatiable. When we attain something we desire, we yearn for more, and it goes in a loop. Irrespective of whatever the need maybe, Career, Monetary benefits or any other perks, we are set the constant question “What next”? While climbing up the corporate ladder, many dream of achieving greatness, but only a few attain it. Some drift aimlessly, wherever the wind takes them, without any set targets or goals. When it comes to Career, Goal setting is very much necessary starting from the grassroots level. There is no one universal way of Goal planning; it is left up to the Individual’s attitude and determination in achieving it. In the course of my career, I have sought help from my Managers/Mentors when I faced a setback. To fail is human, but not making a comeback is catastrophic. In a nutshell, some of the lessons I learnt are summarised below: Understand what you want in the long run. Set specific short term goals that will help to achieve the long term goals along with an expiry date. It gives immense satisfaction to look back at all the things we have achieved. It is constructive to discuss the set goals with your immediate Manager. It projects you to be focussed and ambitious, […]

Gourmetdelight, A Journey From Taj to Startup of The Year 2018

Images of Raka Chakrawarti, founder of Gourmetdelight in her store, in a round table conference, With an Award in hand for first runnerup Retail Startup of the year 2018.

“When something is important enough you do it even if the odds are not in your favor.” —- Elon Musk That’s exactly what Raka Chakrawarti did when she set out to start Gourmetdelight. Having spent 10 years at Indian Hotels, she quit the organization in 2013 as Director of Public Relations for Taj and Director of Content Marketing for Indian Hotels to follow her passion – to set up an outlet that provides differentiated food items. At that time there was not much happening in this domain. There was a fledgling awareness about organic and free-range produce. Only a few outlets in five-star hotels were dealing in organic and free-range produce. For the common household awareness and accessibility to such produce was limited. The Taj group had previously explored the organic/free range food concept with its restaurant ‘Pure’, however the concept did not have many takers at that time. Raka liked the concept of Pure and wanted to do more with it. She could gauge that the tide would change and with increasing levels of awareness the Indian consumers would very soon want to know more about what they are consuming and where it is coming from. This self-awareness would create a need for natural produce and that’s what Gourmetdelight would cater to. Having spent a decade in a job she loved, shaking her comfort zone was not an easy decision to make. Raka experienced a lot of turmoil and kept pushing her decision to take the entrepreneurial plunge. Finally, […]

Career Tracking, Yardstick To Achieve Excellence

Image courtesy: timeshighereducation “Anything that is measured and watched, improves” – Bob Parsons It’s true that work becomes our secondary life. Something so cherished requires constant introspection not only for the Individual, but for the Organization as well. Since ample energy, efforts and manpower is spent at work, it becomes inevitable to ensure it’s on a progressive path. While some start their careers in their respective field, some might opt for greener pastures offering better monetary compensation. Though in the beginning stages it’s reasonable to experiment, there comes a phase where settling in and constant self-evaluation becomes a must. The important aspect of Career Tracking is to be cognizant of the person’s academic proficiency, areas of expertise and then setting deterministic career goals accordingly. Having short term goals and evaluating them at regular intervals yields better results. If an individual is feeling stuck in a job that does not add value, it’s better to make a lateral move in the related field to enhance learning and experience. Also, it’s perfectly fine to take a break, sharpen one’s skills and make a comeback. In today’s era, many companies offer mentorship programs. Apart from imparting knowledge and sharing best practices, such associations do help in understanding where one’s career stands and suggests the improvements needed. If in course of time, an individual is unable to pace up with the set targets, it’s always wise to seek help from peers or mentors.Also, continuous learning ensures to bridge the skill gap and stay relevant […]

All About Blogging

Image Courtesy – Pixabay, Frontier.com Networking has shrunk the earth’s size into a global village. Numerous non-technical opportunities are trending in recent years. Women, nowadays are more inclined to switch to a career that offers  flexibility to work from home, to balance their work and personal life in an efficient way. If you are one among them then Blogging is a best option. Recently I received an invite to attend a Bloggers meet, to my dismay the participants were quite finite compared to the meet held at other locations. Soon I realized that due to lack of motivation many don’t take blogging as a career option. What is Blogging? – A catalogue of all your work done till date I remember seven years ago I was a fresher with an offer letter on my hand. I dint receive my date of joining, so I planned to enroll myself for any internship in an organization. I along with two other friends joined an organization as an intern without any pay. They dealt in customizing Word Press into a website as per client’s requirement. We three had a mentor who motivated us in understanding the fundamentals of the industry. During our tea break he encouraged us to create our own blogs and other social handles in order to get acquaintance with the latest trends and get contacts to nourish our growth. One of us asked our mentor how a blog would be useful in building our future in the industry. His reply was “A […]