Becoming Her Own Hero
An interview with Pooja Veragiwala
Becoming a successful woman takes perseverance, grit, time, and most importantly, patience and courage. Patience with the hopes of turning obstacles into opportunities, and seeing a plan all the way through; and courage to challenge those who may not have faith, as well as themselves.
Most women had to get out of their own way to create a life they hoped and dreamed for — bravely changing all those ‘buts’ into ‘hows’. At QNET, some women have had to scrape together any available resources to make their dreams a reality, while overcoming rejections and other difficulties along the way. And every now and then, we meet a woman whose climb to success truly inspires us.
Pooja Veragiwala, who joined QNET as a shy and reserved woman, worried her own team that this business might be too overwhelming for her. But through it all, she remained tenacious yet grounded. She believed in her Uplines and followed her leaders. She held on to her big dreams, which she always knew she would achieve, without seeking the recognition for her hard work. Here’s an insight into this quiet achiever’s mind that is worth sharing.
Decision-making is vital to any business, especially when choosing a career path. What are the best and worst decisions you’ve ever made?
I was mentored on two things: making decisions I believe in wholeheartedly; and not dwelling too much on the decisions after I had made them, especially when they didn’t go my way. In following this direction, I began to live in the present, and appreciate everything I encountered, both good and bad, knowing that while the path chosen may not have been right at that given moment, it wasn’t something that I couldn’t change. I learnt that I have the option to alter my path if it’s not taking me to my desired goal. So I neither fear making my decisions, nor do I regret them, because I live and enjoy everything in the moment.
Being an influential leader, what do you think is the most significant barrier to female leadership?
I feel that as women, we tend to create these so-called barriers to leadership ourselves. Expecting encouragement in itself is a barrier. If a woman decides to break the glass ceiling, and puts her heart and soul into her work, there is no stopping her. I understand that some women’s paths to success may be obstructed by the world around her; in those cases, she just has to overcome her fears, understand what is more important to her, and make the decision to either move forward, regardless of the bridges she may burn along the way, or stay put.
What woman inspires you and why?
There are so many wonderful women that have inspired my life; I can’t narrow it down to one. There are three women whom I look up to for reasons close to my heart: my mother, my mentor Associate V Partner Kavita Sugandh, and Mother Teresa. These self-made, independent, and caring women have played significant roles in changing the lives of people around them. They inspire me to be better every day.
What do you think will be the biggest challenge for the generation of women behind you?
I think there are going to be so many more leadership opportunities for women in the coming years than ever before, and this path will become more and more demanding for them. As long as women continue to make decisions that are not easy, they will pave the way for better lives.
What are you doing daily to ensure your growth and development continues as a leader?
I surround myself with the right people; I spend more time with my Uplines and follow their journeys to success. I spend my days living them 100 per cent, concentrate on my strategies for success, and perform every aspect of the business with the right mindset. On a daily basis, I focus on being the best person I can be. The real proof of my growth is when I can influence my entire team to move forward with me.
We at QNET are working towards driving the concept of Absolute Living throughout the world. Do you think it’s important for busy women to prioritise their health?
To me, not taking care of your health is not wanting to live absolutely. Many working women, especially working mothers, tend to put everyone else first and their own health last, but it’s so important that they stay fit and healthy to remain on top of things, both at work and at home. Absolute Living is an amazing concept that makes it easier to keep a balance and stay healthy. Instead of setting goals based on what other people think, focus on what’s important to YOU, and develop your goals around that.
When you’re overwhelmed with responsibilities, how do you find a better work-life balance?
I treat my business as I would treat my personal life – with love and respect. Everything I do for my work life, I do for my family. Problems will keep coming and there’s never going to be an end to it, but how we rise above these problems is in our own hands. I love my work, and my team as much as I love my family. You can create a balance when you love them all the same.