A coach, a mentor, a trainer and a guide, Rhea Punjabi have come a long way since she realized that despite having a well-settled career with various MNCs time to time, couldn’t understand why something felt empty inside. She is a perfect blend of a raging fire of being an entrepreneur and the quality of enhancing and influencing lives. The young entrepreneur has touched and successfully transformed more than 2500 lives in a short span of time.
Having seen a difficult time during the childhood years as a low-esteemed and fearful of being a left-out individual, Rhea very well knows that embracing happiness is essential to build a life. She not only transformed her own self into a confident, happy and content individual, she is now moving mountains to spread what she has into others’ lives. At a very young age, Rhea realized her potential of being a mentor and decided to start a career with it. She followed her instincts to become a self-enhancement trainer and started imparting training lessons to individuals and corporate about self-transformation.
How one can embrace what they have, explore what they can have, and delete the e-trash from their minds and thereby creating a life of fullness are a few basic aspects of the full-fledged training program modules she offers, customized for all age groups, from children to adults. Self-belief and family support is what keeps her going, she says and as far as we came to know her, she loves her work. And that’s not all. She plans to touch a million lives over the period of next decade. That’s an impressive number of seeing some happy faces in the world where stress has taken over our minds and souls badly. So, learn, embrace, feel and spread love and happiness to have a life full of positive prospects.
Let’s have a look at Rhea’s perspective of her venture in this exclusive interview.
- What is the Name of Your Venture? Any specific reason for this name?
I operate under my name, Rhea Punjabi. Since I am a coach, I felt people should be able to identify with me as an individual and not as a company.
- Who is your target Audience/clients?
I cater to a vast audience. My programs are made age group wise: 6 to 12 years, 13 to 17 years, 18 years and above. Apart from my own programs, I also train incorporate, most of my clients are from the retail and educational sector. Currently, I am a trainer with over 30 brands.
- Where is your venture based (city, state, country) & What are your geographical target areas?
Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.My geographical target areas are tier 1 and tier 2 cities in Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Karnataka. I also conduct sessions in Goa.
- What problems does your venture resolve? What are your products or services?
I create a life of fullness for all my clients. Each one of us wants to enhance some part of our lives, be it personality, organizing oneself, releasing the emotional trash from within or upping our happiness levels. I work with individuals to solve these and enhance their lives. My services include:
- Life Skills Programs
- Happiness Programs
- Getting Internship/Job Ready
- Resume, LinkedIn and Profile Building
- Corporate Training for better communication, customer service, sales, and negotiations
- Etiquette Basket
- Project a Winning Image
- Product Training and ADCs for Retail Industry
- Coaching on Call and in Person
- Keynote SpeakerMost of my services are offered online as well.
- What problems does your venture resolve? What are your products or services?
- Share the idea or story behind the venture. How did it come to an existence? What motivated you to start your own venture?
Hailing from a business family, business is all that I had heard during my growing up years. It was when I entered my final year of graduation, that I started noticing how my friends would anxiously discuss future career prospects. Without thinking much, I followed the herd and landed my first job in Human Resource with Wipro Technologies for barely three months. After quitting my job, I started freelancing as a Graphic Designer. Both Wipro Technologies and Graphic designing made me realize that I had an entrepreneurial streak in me and that I was good at building relationships.I ignored this realization for a few years and went on to pursue MBA, where I became an active part of the entrepreneurship committee of my MBA institute and later on, opted for two jobs. But again, something inside me wouldn’t let me be at peace. I started observing that I found peace when I was around people, teaching students and solving their difficulties in various subjects and being a career and relationship advisor to many friends. It was time to get that fire back and that’s how a Trainer and Coach by the name of Rhea Punjabi was born.
- Who are your biggest competitors and how do you differentiate yourself from them?
My biggest competitor is me. I strive to get better by the day. Each time I have a new assignment, I change my training strategy. I change the content, activities, and approach so that there is always newness in my services.There are many coaches, trainers, speakers and facilitators in the industry. I can’t really compare myself to anyone because each one of us has different stories and experiences. No training is complete till it doesn’t have an element of YOU in it.
- How did you identify your co-founder? Tell us something about your co-founder/s
- How did you hire your first team members? What skills Do you want in your employees/team?
My hiring process is simple and I always wish to keep it that way. While educational qualifications are important, I focus more on people skills. My team members have three things in common- They express love for the kind of work that I do, are open to experiment and believe in healthy communication.
- What expansion plans are you looking for the next 2 years, next 5 years?
In the next 2 years, I’m aiming to have a team of 10 to 15 trainers who would spread my services pan-India. In the next five years, I’m looking to conduct my programs in other countries.
- Where do you want to see yourself in the next 10 years?
Touching a million lives through my services.
- What are your goals over the next 1, 3, 6 and 12 months?
My short term goal over the next 12 months is to focus on more B2C workshops and coaching one-on-one.
- Have you raised any funding? Or have any plans for the funding?
I haven’t raised any funding yet. As of now, I do not have any plans for funding but who knows what’s in store for the future?
- What were the problems you faced during the starting days and how did you resolve them?
People wonder how I can sell a course on happiness. Well, they are right. Happiness cannot be bought but with little guidance, one can definitely work on being a happier individual. My happiness program is experiential and activity based. It aims to unsettle the limiting beliefs that each one of us has.There are a lot of Soft Skills Trainers in the industry. Moreover, they penetrate the market at extremely low prices. Some trainers have many more titles attached to their profiles such as NLP, Facilitators, behavioral trainers, Storytellers etc. To stand out of this crowd can be challenging at times especially when you don’t want to compromise on your charges because you are confident of the value you are going to bring.Also, many people find my dressing too casual for an Image Consultant especially because I believe in no hassle of dressing and hardly any make-up.How did I solve these? It is a combination of self-belief, inner image management, the right attitude, persistence, various attempts to reach the right target audience, networking, coaching on call, complimentary workshops and much more. Three things that have always remained constant are gratitude, self-belief and being flexible.
- What was the most challenging part of your journey till now? How did you overcome those challenges?
The most challenging part of my journey to date was when people didn’t know me and didn’t trust that I could train senior professionals. They felt I was too young to train senior professionals or for that matter, guarantee that with my happiness programs I could shift people’s happiness levels.I started giving complimentary sessions for an hour or two so that they could get a flavor of my training. By the grace of God, now most of my clients come through word of mouth.
- Are you married, single or in a relationship?
Married to a very supportive, encouraging and understanding partner.
- What are your hobbies? What do you do in your non-work time?
love reading inspirational articles and exploring new cafes and restaurants. In my spare time, I either go with my husband or friends to for a movie or new eating joint or spend time with myself.
- What is your favorite food & holiday destination?
Being a Sindhi, my all-time favorite is Sindhi curry chaval with tuk. I also love dal makhani with jeera rice. Yummy!My favorite destination is Sikkim. That’s one place I can keep going to. I love the mountains and the lakes there. Not to miss the food- Thukpa, momos, Maggi, and chai!
- Whom do you consider your idol or biggest motivator?
My dad is my idol. I feel I have got this business streak from him. He has fought all his battles really well. I hope to be as strong-willed and committed like him one day.My family is my greatest strength. My dad sorts me out when I have some hassles related to business, mom and husband are my comfort cushions, both my siblings look up to me and my in-laws are very supportive. It is thanks to them that I am able to step out every day for long hours without worrying about home.My greatest inspiration for new ideas is nature where I sit calmly and receive much more than I seek.
- What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?
Entrepreneurs work for themselves, have more freedom of choice and can take holidays as and when they feel like.
- If you had the chance to start your career over again, what would you do differently?
If given a chance, I wouldn’t ignore that realization and would have started my entrepreneurial journey at 21.
- How has being an entrepreneur affected your family & Social life?
Being an entrepreneur hasn’t affected my family or social life at all. When I was on a job, I had weekends off and would reserve all social activities for the weekends. Now, I am in a better space. I take time out whenever I feel like, meet family and friends and also have quality me time.
- Anything, you would like to say to our readers or upcoming entrepreneurs?
I feel it is very important to spend time with ourselves. In the hustle and bustle of daily life, we have forgotten who we really are. Nowhere on earth will you get such a peaceful and untroubled retreat.
- Tell us something about your education & family background.
My educational qualifications include:
- Certified Happiness Coach in association with the Berkeley Institute of Well-Being, California
- Soft Skills Training from Image Consulting Business Institute, Mumbai (Accredited by SQA- Scottish Qualifications Authority)
- 8- day Train the Trainer certification (by NABET- National Accreditation Board of Education and Training) with an All India All Time Rank 3
- Image, Style, Wardrobe Management and Consulting from Image Consulting Business Institute, Mumbai
- MBA in Retail Management from K.J Somaiya Institute of Management Studies and Research, Mumbai
- 2-year Diploma course in Business Systems and Information Management from NIITMy father has his own business in retail, my mother is a homemaker and my siblings are studying. I stay with my husband who is the founder of Constructor, a property consulting firm.
- What is your USP which makes it unique & different from other start-ups in similar domains?
My USP lies in the fact that I don’t have a fixed set of content or program for everyone. I personalize every program to suit the client. In any meeting or training, I talk from my personal experiences. That’s the key to developing healthy relationships and adding a personal touch to your work.
- What do you think is the biggest threat to the success of small businesses & Start-ups today?
The biggest threat, according to me is our own limiting beliefs. We need to change our mindsets by changing our limiting beliefs. Have a growth mindset, not a fixed mindset.
- Do you consider yourself successful and by what means do you measure success?
Success, for me, is when you find meaning in what you do. Yes, I do consider myself successful. In fact, I have never felt this satisfied with my work. Day in and day out I meet people from various walks of life and guide them to enhance their lives. This adds meaning to my life.
- Please share complete name, address, phone number, email id &website of Your Business & Contact Person along with the pictures of your founder, co-founder, the team(if any) as well as your logos.
NAME: Rhea Punjabi
Address: Bandra West, Mumbai
Phone: +91 82919 98225
Email: [email protected]
Contact Person: Rhea Punjabi