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Women On Top

Tanaaz Bhatia: “Being A Woman, You Have To Work That Much Harder”

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We don’t need just one day to celebrate women. Here at Hauterfly, we celebrate the smarter sex EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. Nonetheless, we join in the party today, on March 8, International Women’s Day, to applaud some seriously badass women we know and love. These #WomenOnTop have conquered multiple worlds with ease — from corporate and social to entertainment and education. These personal essays give a glimpse into the journey of women who may not have always had it easy, but made it anyway, and shattered multiple glass ceilings along the way.  

 

She quit her high-profile job to come back to India and market our very own Bollywood stars and films. “How? What? Why?” you ask? Passion and persistence goes a long way, as it did for Tanaaz Bhatia, CEO of Bottomline Media. Despite being an ambitious and sharp entrepreneur, Tanaaz knows where to draw the line and how to prioritise. Nothing is impossible, she says, and looking at her journey, you’re inclined to believe this to be true.

 

Wall Street To Bollywood

From the Wall Street to Bollywood, my professional switch was quite a 360 degree turn — it was almost an accident. Bottomline Media started at a coffee shop in Bandra, Mumbai. If you had asked me then whether I thought I would be doing this today, I would have laughed and said “No way”. But here I am.

Before embarking on a journey like this, though, it’s important to understand that an entrepreneur’s work never stops. You live, breathe, talk, and eat your work, and personal and professional lives becomes intertwined.

I’ve been lucky in many ways. Being a woman investment banker on the Wall Street was quite rare — in our team, we were only 2 girls. However, the good thing about being a banker on Wall Street in NYC was that we were just given the work — there was no distinction made.

In the world of media, too, I haven’t yet been sidelined. Where we work, women are equals and we work with some great folks who follow the same philosophy.

But yes, being a woman, you have to work that much harder, to get a pitch approved, to make your point heard, or even just prove you can do the task. Of course, that makes one more aggressive and ambitious to do the job.

I’ve made my fair share of mistakes, as well. As an entrepreneur, you tend to trust and take people at face value, which is both a a good thing and a bad. Eventually you learn the ways, and your judgement and gut teaches you too.

 

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Woman On Top

The important traits to stay on top of their game are persistence, determination, earnestness, humility, and being true to what you do.

I think having a mentor is also extremely important — it definitely helps in having a sounding board. But there are people who create something out of nothing. Richard Branson and Oprah Winfrey had nothing handed to them, and made their way on their own.

I have been a mentor as well. My first-ever employee is now a successful director working on his own film. It is great to see people who you have taught do well and excel in what they do.

Me-Time

Even though as an entrepreneur, your professional and personal lives sort of fuse, I keep weekends strictly for personal time and catching up friends. The mornings are my ‘me time’ at the gym. I do Pilates, take long walks and meet my friends whenever I can. Travelling always helps too.

I also play the piano to help calm my nerves and drown myself in music (the 7 grades in music at the Trinity College, London, definitely helped).

When I’m on my own, I think recreationally. It helps me process questions like what I’m doing and where I would like to be. It helps me get perspective.

Parting Shots

Believe in your idea, trust your instincts, and don’t be afraid to fail. The secrets to success are failure, to never say never, and to know that nothing is impossible.

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