JWB Chats With SHEROES’ Sairee Chahal During Her Jaipur Visit
On June 10, Jaipur Mom along with SHEROES & JWB conducted an event called ‘Work From Home – Job Opportunities For Women’ to help women explore various career destinations and work options from home.
Though we did a telephonic interview with Sairee talking exclusively about the event, here is a quick interview we managed with her soon after the session got over. Below are the excerpts:
JWB: Tell us your story.
Sairee: Well, I have a family including my husband, daughter, father-in-law and a lovely dog. SHEROES is my full time work and apart from that, I teach, take seminars on women career destinations and write.
JWB: Do you have a work-sabbatical story to share?
Sairee: I never went on sabbatical! I took my laptop to the hospital during labor. After 24 hours of delivery, I sent an email to my team that said – ‘I am back!’ Though I did work from home for a month, but never really gave up on it.
JWB: A powerful woman you are! How did you manage?
Sairee: I over-invest in my support system, and that’s what I suggest women who ask me tips for work-home balance. I have got a driver, a full-time maid and a baby-sitter who form my strong team. Without them, I can’t give 100% to work.
JWB: What is the role of your husband in your career-voyage?
Sairee: I think before that, it is the woman who decides and performs the role in her career life. I never gave my career a backseat which made my husband hold high regards for it. We know that both of us have got important roles to play at our respective workplaces, and hence, we don’t negotiate. Every person has the power to set up his/her tone of the relationship.
JWB: Do you think women can ‘have it all’?
Sairee: Why not? But not at the same time. I am happy in my career and therefore, I enjoy my family and personal life; and vice-versa. My daughter tells me: ‘I am glad you’re working, else you would be a big-bored-sad face in the house.’
JWB: And what about your social life?
Sairee: I have got friends whom I meet up with. I do go for family functions whenever I can. Mine is a big Punjabi family; and you can expect the amount of functions we love to host. However, I don’t take the stress of others’ expectations onto me. If there is a wedding and people are expecting me to be there 10 days before, I am sorry. I have got to look after other important things as well.
My version of life is – Finish work and devote yourself to home and family. Women, generally, take the load of looking good, making their house look pretty…are you a superwoman? You can be average and still be happy!
JWB: Makes sense.
Sairee: Women need to fight, not really fight, but stand up for the authentic. You can’t say that a working woman will nurture a bad-mannered child. Can you guarantee that a home-maker will raise an intelligent child with excellent etiquette?
JWB: Rightly said. Lastly, a message for women who always blame companies for wage-gap and glass-ceiling.
Sairee: Stop blaming and change your inner self. If you think there is a wage-gap, push your management for investigation. Before that, make sure you are giving your 100% to work and are efficient enough for your job profile.