"I had committed to a huge sales target for the multi-national company I worked for. It required aggressive expansion of sales stores for a niche electronic product. I grew the footprint from 10 stores to 40 within the time frame. The company appreciated me and considered me a valuable resource person.
And then, I got pregnant. The moment I broke the news at work, I was no longer an asset. The management was not sure anymore about my focus and dedication. I was asked if I thought I would be able to match my outstanding performance in future. I was very clearly told that my role involved travel and it was not going to change.
I strongly believe that being a mother should not be a setback and I decided to take it in my stride. One fine day, my maternity leave was shortened by two months. I returned to work with a four-month-old baby and travelled aggressively with her. I was breastfeeding and there was no option other than strapping her along. I took her to meetings, field visits and even conferences. I simply wanted to prove that being a mother had not made me less competent. After two months of pumping iron, I realized that my child deserved better and I was dragging her along to feed my ego. I was only thinking about keeping my words. This was when I requested for a profile without outstation trips. I was refused. I put down my papers without any backup plan. During my notice period, I completed a project and my seniors were impressed. I was offered to work on the project as an independent consultant. This was the moment when my own firm came into existence. I was out of job but had my first client even before registering my company.
I consider my consultancy firm my second child. It works on enhancing retail experience in India. We have a network of 800 trainers and we cover 500 cities. Most of the top retail brands are our clients. We have patented two training techniques as well. In achieving all of this, I haven’t forgotten the pain point from where I started. I support new parents. In my core team there are several working mothers with flexible working hours. I have a father in my team who has taken a break to dedicate more time to parenting. I am happy that I am able to contribute to changing the overall work culture for parents. ”