Vandana Luthra Curated
Founder of VLCC Health Care Ltd
CURATED BY :
What are the frequent challenges faced by women entrepreneurs in the workplaces and what are the ways to tackle them?
When it comes to entrepreneurship, women have many odds stacked against them. From arranging for finance to establishing a stronghold in a male-dominated environment, women have faced it all. The only way to tackle such challenges is to fight for your rights and work relentlessly towards pursuing your dreams. Fortunately, times are changing now as we can see some government-led initiatives creating entrepreneurship opportunities by making banking finance more accessible for even the small entrepreneurs. However, for better progress, organized players and the government sector need to work together to provide support to women.
What’s your strategy to contribute effectively in a hyper-competitive market?
The beauty and wellness industry is ever evolving, and hence it becomes important to keep me abreast of all the latest happenings in the industry and simultaneously adapt to changes. Being part of a hyper-competitive market like beauty and wellness, I prioritize the tasks according to importance. I believe in delegating the tasks to the people who are skilled in their respective areas of work. Doing this allows me to act upon the changing dynamics of the industry and also contribute effectively.
What were the past experiences, achievements or lessons that have shaped your journey?
My journey can be best described as a roller coaster ride which had its share of ups and downs. There have been lots of past experiences, achievements, and lessons that have shaped the journey. VLCC was not a spur-of-the-moment decision, but a well-nurtured dream which took years of dedication, hard work and perseverance to bring it where it is today. It has definitely not been an easy journey for me. From arranging for finance to convincing and having medical doctors onboard, I faced it all. Being a women entrepreneur in the eighties, and trying to scale up in a highly unorganized sector like beauty and wellness was one of the biggest challenges initially. It was the support of my family and the belief in my concept that gave me the strength to win against all odds and achieve my dream. The reason why I chose this path was because of my interest in transforming lives; something that also helped me keep going at every step of the journey. Today the fact that I can contribute towards skill development and women empowerment through VLCC Institute and in my capacity as the chairperson of B&WSSC also gives me immense happiness.
What are the lessons you have learnt so far?
What I have learnt is that a brand should reflect the core values that the organisation stands for and that it takes years of hard work, dedication and commitment to build a brand. Even then, it just takes one wrong action or misjudgment to cast a cloud on a brand which has been assiduously built over a period of time.
What are the important things to keep in mind to become a successful entrepreneur?
I feel that in order to be a successful entrepreneur, one has to have an indomitable spirit, boundless enthusiasm, tremendous self-belief, be a bit of a visionary and have the ability to take the knocks. People management skills are also very important.
What prompted you to start VLCC and what were the initial challenges you faced as a woman entrepreneur?
In my family, we were encouraged to take decisions and be independent. Beauty and good looks always fascinated me. Once, I was accompanying my father on his official trip to Germany where I met his friends – a husband-wife duo running a health centre in that country. Theirs was a great combination, with one being a nutritionist and the other was a cosmetologist.They had a great influence on my decision to enter into the business of beauty and wellness. From the start, I was clear in my mind that whatever venture I get into should benefit the society and be accessible to all segments. VLCC is a manifestation of that dream.As an entrepreneur, the challenge during the initial stages was one of perception. People were familiar with beauty parlours, but the idea of a Transformation Centre that provides a solution from head-to-toe was perceived as futuristic. Also, at the time when I founded the company, there were very few women entrepreneurs and people were apprehensive about my business skills. I faced difficulty in financing my venture.
How did you manage to balance between work and home?
What is your advice for women entrepreneur?
What innovations till date has been done by VLCC ?
How was your journey?
How did you started your journey on being an entrepreneur and what was the basic concept around it ?
What are the values that you'll be implementing in you business in the next 5-7 years ?
What kind of CSR activities is VLCC involved in ?
What keeps you motivated throughout ?
What made VLCC to expand its business in Africa too ?
What kind of customers does VLCC mainly look after ?