Lubeina Shahpurwala of Mustang Socks tells us about her 15 year journey in the business today
Lubeina Shahpurwala, co-director of Mustang Socks speaks to SHEROES today. Mustang Socks is a global company that focuses on delivering best quality formal socks. She talks about her 15 year journey at the company and what her future plans are.
Tell us a little about yourself
I was born in Mumbai, India and raised in Dubai, U.A.E with my sister and 2 brothers. My first job was at a leading international bank after which I attended Sydenham College of Commerce and Economics, Mumbai, majoring in Business Studies and Accounting. After graduating from college I moved to Mumbai permanently and started working with a major denim and apparel wear brand. After this, I spent a short while working at my father’s buying agency. In 2001, I joined Mustang Socks where I am now Co-Director and Partner. Overall it’s been an interesting journey till now, and I am thrilled at the thought of the future.
As co-Director of Mustang Socks, what are your biggest challenges at the workplace?
Since our inception 27 years ago, we had a number of challenges to overcome. Being a domestic product, people thought we could not match foreign products in terms of quality. In addition, socks were seen strictly as a commodity, and not as anything more. It has taken great perseverance and team effort to bring Mustang up to the stage where it is now. Changing the concept of a sock from commodity to a fashion accessory has been one of the biggest challenges, but I think we have done very well and our future is very promising.
What is a typical day at work like for you?
A typical day at work, especially at the factory, is crazy! Once the paperwork is wrapped up, a lot of time is spent with the design team. With our products, we have to be one step ahead of the trends of next season, we have to keep innovating on our styles and quality. We then proceed to inspect the actual manufacturing of the products – and this is my favorite part. Interacting with the team and actually seeing the socks being made is just the most amazing feeling. The thing that separates us from other brands is the fact that we manufacture the products in house and have great control on the product. So a lot of time is spent on floor ensuring that whatever leaves our dispatch center is nothing short of perfect
Mustang Socks has added quite a few products to its line over the years. What future plans do you have regarding service offerings?
We are getting ready to expand our range of apparels. Along with socks, we have a range of leg warmers and tights. We also already have a range of briefs, vests and camisoles for kids. Since apparels such as gloves, scarfs, camisoles, etc all depend heavily on quality, Mustang already has an upper hand in that sense. So in the future, we will be expanding along those lines.
What key lesson from your professional journey would you share with our readers?
Some of the key lessons I have learnt over the years are
1) Give a 100% attention and dedication to what you are working on. Do not let anything distract you.
2) Success comes easier when you work as a team and it is more enjoyable as well.
3) Learn to adapt quickly to changing circumstances. Don’t let change dishearten you.
4) Keep it simple,
5) Manage stress and be in touch with yourself. Take time out to do things that bring you peace and happiness.
Over the years, I found travel and trekking to be a great stress buster. When my mind is settled I’m most effective at work. This does not mean I’m taking a rain check on my ambitions. I’m simply managing my limited time better.