Meet the SHEROES - Piali Bose Sengupta
We live in a digital world and several entrepreneurs toy with the idea of a web based business. And why not? The web is a vast place for you to sell your goods, create a niche and name for yourself!
Today in the ‘Meet the SHEROES’ section we have in focus - Piali Bose Sengupta, a creatively inclined woman entrepreneur who began her own web-based jewellery and designer bags business. Here’s her story -
What line of Business Are you in today? How did the idea of a web based business come about?
I run Aurora*P - a web based boutique that deals in handcrafted jewellery and designer bags.
Earlier, while working as a consultant and pursuing different passions (designing being one of them), I was updating the activities in various social networks. The overwhelming response from friends and well-wishers shaped the idea of having my own web based business.
What was your first job like and how old were you when you began your career?
I started out as a trainee PRO in a PR consultancy firm. I was just 25 at the time and I was armed with a Masters in Economics and a Diploma in Mass Communication. I wanted to create a name for myself in PR / Advertising. The internship was an eye opener.
I was doing a lot of work like handling briefs, going for client meetings, preparing press releases and copy writing for corporate advertising. I had to read all important daily newspapers both in English and other local languages to keep abreast with industry news.
Press club, press meets, endless round of media houses made me learn the ropes of the game. What this experience (I eventually joined them after my internship) actually taught me was lessons in deconstructing ideas, developing contacts, learning group dynamism, tests in perseverance and in the process discovering facets of my own personality in challenging circumstances.
What advice can you give working women in the corporate world?
Never compromise on your principles, Acknowledge and be open to ideas, Respect others to gain respect
How do you think your online boutique is a class apart and different from other e-boutiques?
I have never harped on the idea of Aurora*P being distinctively different from others. Aurora*P is my signature style. What I have consciously tried to instil is my aesthetic sensibilities into my designs.
Single edition and affordable designs are for keepsake. Colorful, joyous, spirited and happy are quotients infused into each piece which gives them distinctiveness. While customizing designs, I keep in mind my client’s personality and when they adorn an Aurora piece, they perfectly complement each other.
My mantra, ‘let the good work continue, it will do the speaking for you’
What are the challenges when starting up your own company?
The first and foremost challenge was the change in profile from working ‘under somebody’ to being my own boss and the barrage of scepticism that I had to bravely face. People also doubt the ability of an online based business to work well, still.
Next was logistics. Creating was fun but managing the entire show from procuring, designing, taking visually appealing shots and cataloguing with the intention of selling was a different ball game altogether. Keeping the balance sheet in order, maintaining accounts and simultaneously making sure the packages reach in time and in perfect shape was an intense challenge.
Not having any online marketing strategy but a future vision, the challenge was to gain ground in short term and then plan long term with experience, exposure and savings as tools.
What are the top three things it takes to be a woman entrepreneur or to succeed in your line of work?
Self Confidence, Committed hard work, Honesty.