Hi Yukti, thanks for taking the time to chat with SIW. Tell us a little bit about yourself and your work.
Yukti : Personally, I am a blessed mother of two beautiful twins ( a girl and a boy) who will turn 4 years old in a week from now. Married to my best friend who brought in abundance of love & friendship in my life. Eldest of the three siblings, my two younger sisters have only made me proud so far. My parents have been working parents all their life and now deservingly sit back and enjoy life with each other.
Academically, I am a Mathematics graduate from Delhi University and MBA (sp. Marketing) from JDBIMS.
Professionally, I have an enriching corporate experience of over a decade with MNCs like Citi and Barclays Bank. Incidentally, I also won the crown of Gladrags Mrs India Runner up in the year 2008 and have done a few ramp shows, print ads and TV commercials. I enjoy anchoring shows and so have hosted many on screen, online and on stage events, including a Network 18 production show called Paper Peak – Science show for 9th & 10th grade children, still running on air.
Spiritually, I am consciously on an ongoing journey of improving myself as a person and of the lives of people around me with my love and compassion.
What inspired you to get into this profession?
Yukti : Concept Exhibitions started cause of my love for children and the desperation to add value to this segment. I had visited many exhibitions for kids but was always disappointed with the lack of substance in the shows since they all appeared to be an extension to shopping malls and shops.
So I wanted to do the exhibitions in a way that it makes the visit for people worth it both in terms of their experience and knowledge. KIDS MELA™ is a platform owned by Concept Exhibitions which extends itself to various products and services related to total development of children, beyond demographic, phycological and socio-economic status.
What is your USP?
Yukti : The USP for my company is the passion with which we drive all the projects we undertake. Of course, the format in which we do things is unique as well. KIDS MELA™ is an experiential festival with more than 50% of the event space dedicated to activities that directly engage the kids and teach them things through touch & feel.
There is no space we assure, which can offer this gamut of experience and knowledge under the same roof in such a structured & entertaining way.
How someone can start the same business as yours in terms of investment, material procurement, production, and marketing etc?
Yukti : To start something like I do, whats more important than the financial readiness is the readiness to understand the pulse of kids and young parents. Once you feel for their concerns, your business will take shape on its own.
Paid-up capital needs to be arranged through loans though the amount will not be too high for the first few events you do.
The next step is to get into the network of vendors and service providers who offer unique propositions that you are in search of.
Marketing & promotion expenses can be netted of against sponsorships.
Any challenge you are facing in your profession and how you overcome that?
Yukti : Quitting a well-paid job was a challenge in itself. Even after crossing my own mental barriers, I had to convince my family and a few close friends to include them in my plan at a conscious level.
The next challenge was to arrange for paid up capital and working capital. And then came the know-how of making a successful marketing & media plan for my event.
I had to come out of my ego to reach out to my family for loan just to stay above waters. Had to read up and research a lot to make a media plan myself in order to save professional fees.
Most importantly, I had to push myself out of the mindset to expect monthly flow of money which doesn’t happen in business.
What are your plans for the future?
Yukti : I have already covered Mumbai and Delhi and this year I will be doing KIDS MELA™ in various other cities in India.
Next year onwards we will go global, starting from South-east asia, to USA and then European states.
How you manage your personal and professional life?
Yukti : I think when you love doing what you do then your efficiency levels are sky high. So it gets easy to find time for everything you need to do.
In any given day, you will see me buy groceries between two meetings, make a call at home over my evening tea in office, and sometimes meet my husband over dinner so we can spend more time together before getting back home.
I think both personal and professional are part of your own life so live every bit of it to the most without compromising one for another. Nothing is impossible. It is we, who make possible impossible.
What are your favorite books that you would recommend SIW family?
Yukti : Oh I love reading…a few that have inspired me are:
– Horse Sense by Al Ries & Jack Trout
– The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
– iCon Steve Jobs by Jeffrey S. Young
– The Secret by Rhonda Byrne
Anything you want to mention here …
Yukti: I have always believed that women are a stronger gender in every which way and are still blessed with a soft heart that beats for others. With such an amazing combination, what can stop us from doing what we want?? Women are born to succeed only if they give themselves a chance.
So take your chances and follow your heart.
What advice would you give to young women readers of SIW who want to follow a similar career path as you?
Yukti : I would say that irrespective of which business you choose for yourself, it’s imperative for you to be passionate about what you do. If you believe in what you do then money just follows, it has to.
Also, when you believe in yourself that’s when people around you believe in you.
Always be inclusive in your journey of entrepreneurship because it is the love and support of your loved ones that will keep you going through tough times.
Don’t be scared to dream. Dream. Dream, until your dreams come true!
All images are property of “Concept Exhibitions” and required permissions have been taken to publish it on www.smartindianwomen.com website.
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