We had the good fortune of connecting with Shilpi Shah and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Shilpi, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
Whenever I used to hear the term “work-life balance”, I didn’t get the hype about it or the importance of it. It all changed the moment I restarted my career in 2017. I have been a WFH employee ever since. I was surprised at how my priorities changed so suddenly. Now, all I wanted was a job that let me have a balance between my personal life and my professional. I have been slogging to be a perfectionist and “hard worker” for the majority of my life. Balance is something I used to practice every day to maintain a feeling of happiness in everything I do yet working from home and managing everyone at the family 24/7/365 was really challenging
Thanks to the pandemic that normalized remote working and enabled the virtual working setup to leap forward and guess what, everyone in the family adopted that too. I would actually say I became MORE productive as there aren’t as many disruptions now. Pandemic taught me that work-life balance is a mental concept and not something I regularly practised.
Ever since I hardwired my brain with the concept that everything cannot be perfect you won’t imagine how much time I had before and after work. Time for family, friends, cooking, personal projects and development, the choices are endless. As soon as I prioritized my tasks and made a checklist of everything for the day and I stopped feeling guilty to stay in bed all day long, shut my brain off, and just binge-watch shows. Resting and having a “me time” is also equally productive. It has kept me sane. Practising a work-life balance helped me break the routine and revive my energy for work. It gave my body, mind, and heart a chance to relax and recharge.
I believe that balance is more about finding ways to make the different aspects of your busy day “fit” into each other. By finding the right “fit” between the different aspects of our life, maybe we can find every day a new balance and happiness.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
With the rising concept of gender equality and women empowerment, I wish to share the load.
The world has changed with time and we have been witnessing the growth and redefinition of feminism. Now women are no more centric to just the kitchen but have a life outside too. they are winning the world and in fact creating their own world. That’s women empowerment for us! And that has given me a meaning too, to explore my capabilities over time. A desire to learn, a penchant for teamwork and leadership and a zest for challenges motivated me to pursue MBA in HR.
Having been surrounded by women entrepreneurs who are yet in their early 20’s I have also dared to dream for myself.
From no mobile age to mobile- internet becoming a lifeline in schools & colleges and day to day life I have seen it all during this journey.
A woman of 42 must be worried about her kid’s courses and jobs but here I am hustling for myself, breaking stereotypes just to see me in Forbes ‘100 most powerful women’ list and set an example that it’s never too late to reboot, reset and restart your life.
From being an Intern to becoming a PR & Digital Marketing Associate I have learned a lot. My passion for learning new skills and desire to grow both as a person and a professional makes me different. From Brand awareness to brand collaborations, Influencer Endorsements to Media Publications I have come a long way and the journey is still ongoing. With my organized approach and pre-planning attitude, my firm’s media publications and followers base scaled up high within no time. I was awarded the trophy of Fuzia Star thrice for the same. With fine attention to all the details, exploring alternative solutions to problems, and ensuring to be as productive as possible on the job I have been continuously enhancing my skill set in media relations and influencer collaborations.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I reside in the Kutch district of Gujarat state whose headquarters is in Bhuj. It is famous for its handicrafts, Delectable Gujarati delicacies, white deserts, sea beaches, various forts, hills and Dholaveera, which is among the most prominent archaeological sites in India belonging to the Indus Valley Civilization.
Winters ( January & February) are the best time to visit Kutch. The temperature during these months is under 25 degrees Celsius and makes the weather perfect for sightseeing. This is also the best time to visit the Rann of Kutch Festival.
3 nights and 4 days are good for exploring the Kutch region. On the first day, one can visit the Black Hills and White Rann, Second day Mandvi, Dholaveera and surroundings, third-day Lakhpat, Narayan Sarovar – Koteshwar, and keep last day for Bhuj and surroundings.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Built my roots by pursuing masters in Geology but eventually, I had to decline the offer from the Indian Institute of Geomagnetism because I prioritized my personal life and I got married. My journey continued by shifting to B.Ed. as I moved to Renukoot-Hindalco Industries ABG Group along with my husband and joined a convent school as a teacher for 4 years. Post which I had to take a career sabbatical for my family but then all of a sudden AWOO PILOT PROJECT was introduced by Aditya Birla Group for the wives of its employees. That became a transformational turn for me.
For the first time in my life, I heard the word Work From Home from Team JobsForHer who were invited to mentor us. Still, there was a catch as ABG and JFH were providing a supporting hand and not the job first-hand. Things were even more challenging now as the scenario had changed in 5 years. I decided to work remotely to restart my career and that too in a completely different field. I was keen to explore the lesser-known career journey. It wasn’t easy to connect with the fast-growing internet age when I didn’t even prefer to use the computer. At this point, my son came to my rescue and then as the saying goes “A child is the father of a man” my son started guiding me about the basics of computers.
Since I held an interest in Content Writing, I started writing blogs and articles and was asked to maintain an online presence of myself by creating a profile on various social media platforms. In the meantime, some of my articles were published by JFH itself and then various websites like Budding Star, Momspresso.
This kickstarted my graph and I got my first writing assignment at Career Hubwords. Though I had started getting assignments from Coffeegraphy Content Solutions, I did a course in Content Writing and kept practising to excel at the job. No matter what I have been slogging with, my husband has always been a pillar of strength whenever and wherever required. Thus within 3 months, I restarted my career as a Freelance Content Writer by writing blogs and articles for various websites.
Well, this was just the beginning, and one fine day in August-2017, while scrolling down Instagram I read about Social Media Intern hiring at www.fuzia.com to which I readily applied because it was a global community that would help me expand my practical exposure with constant learning. I was interviewed by the founding members and got selected for the role.
Working at Fuzia helped me understand my uniqueness and my true potential. At Fuzia, creativity is rewarded in multiple ways and thus I was able to discover my hidden potential and passion for working for the upliftment of women. Now I have a purpose in my mind to encourage women and help them to express their real selves, their ideas, thoughts and creative selves. I want every woman to know the importance of financial freedom and take charge of their own life.
To upscale my job role, I joined a Digital Marketing course at Digital Vidya which helped me work in synergy with the current scenario. The knowledge, upskilling, morale boost and connection with other students/teachers was a complete makeover. It helped me rediscover my interests in using media for brand awareness.
From being an Intern to becoming a PR & Digital Marketing Associate I have learned a lot. My passion for learning new skills and desire to grow both as a person and a professional makes me a promising candidate. From Brand awareness to brand collaborations, Influencer Endorsements to Media Publications I have come a long way. With my organized and planning beforehand attitude, my firm’s media publications and followers base scaled up high within no time. I was awarded the trophy of Fuzia Star thrice for the same. With fine attention to all the details, exploring alternative solutions to problems, and ensuring to be as productive as possible on the job I enhanced my skill set in media relations and influencer collaborations.
During my work with Fuzia, I got a chance to explore other areas of work as well. Since it is a startup, it allows its members to explore multiple work roles and stick to what they feel is best suited. While my major work role was PR and Digital marketing, I developed a sincere interest in HR after being included in some employee retention activities which finally led me to do MBA in HR from IIM C.