Working as a journalist in India, Priyanka realised that she was not only earning less than her male counterparts, but also lacked the financial knowledge and support to optimise her money and create her own wealth. Speaking with friends, Priyanka saw that this was a challenge shared by many other women. Eager to do something about it, in 2011 she launched Women on Wealth, a social enterprise that offers financial management classes and resources to women.
Although Priyanka designed an innovative curricula and ran one-to-one training sessions, she was finding it challenging to grow strategically. Being taken seriously as a woman in the financial sector was also proving to be difficult. Determined to prevent her business growth from stalling, she joined our Mentoring Women in Business Programme in 2016.
We matched Priyanka with Sophie, an entrepreneur from the United States who runs her own coaching business and has expertise in marketing and business management. Sophie’s passion for social entrepreneurship made her a great match for Priyanka and the pair quickly developed a strong mentoring relationship.
Meeting weekly via online tools, Priyanka and Sophie analysed Priyanka’s business strategy and identified areas of weakness and opportunities for growth. Sophie helped Priyanka to modify her business model and launch a new series of group workshops. They also developed a feedback process for Priyanka’s members, so she could shape her services to better meet their needs. To attract new members, Sophie encouraged her to create promotional videos featuring alumni, offer a first class for free and expand her network by delivering taster sessions to women entrepreneurs based out of co-working spaces.
Since joining the programme, Priyanka has made substantial progress. She has trained four volunteers, doubled Women on Wealth’s membership community to 100 women and expanded its network of event attendees, video and newsletter subscribers to over 7,000 women. As her membership has grown, Priyanka has been able to reduce the fees she charges for her training programmes, enabling more women to access her services. Most importantly, Priyanka’s classes are already having a ripple effect on the women she works with, including one who has been able to pay off a high debt and use her newly accessible capital to launch a bakery.
Priyanka said that working with Sophie has energised her and she now feels confident to reach her goals: “She’s the best! It’s my absolute privilege to be her mentee, and to grow with her. It has only been because of Sophie and her unconditional support that I’ve grown.”
The positivity is mutual, with Sophie also reflecting on the wonderful friendship they’d built and all she’d gained from learning about a different business climate and culture.
Looking to the future, Priyanka is keen to build on Women on Wealth’s growth by expanding to new cities and opening an activity centre where women can network, collaborate and reach their financial potential.
To learn more about Priyanka’s social enterprise, please visit: http://womenonwealth.in/