Anita Golani is the founder and owner of Anita’s Aromatic Solutions
Shilpa Jain: As our primary cause is making young women financially independent, why is being financially independent important to you?
Anita Golani: A financially independent woman can live life on her own terms. I firmly believe that a woman who can fulfill the responsibilities of the family financially, socially and gracefully is a good example for her children to demonstrate to them that gender stereotypes made up by the society do not mean anything when a lady is solid , sure and beyond any doubt capable of herself.
SJ: How did your entrepreneurial journey begin? Do you think it is important to first work in a corporate set-up before embarking on an entrepreneurial venture?
AG: After completing my Graduation in Commerce from NM College Mumbai, I did what most girls from a similar background do – ‘got married and settled down’. A burning ambition, strong passion and a desire to ‘make it on my own’ is what drove me to venture out and find my calling.
The field of ‘Beauty’ is what always caught my attention and interest and a little newspaper cutting was all I needed to decide ‘Aromatherapy’ is my calling. Where most young mothers choose to forego their ambition I took the bold step to follow my passion, but never compromised on my duties as a mother. Blessed with a strong support system of my husband and family I pursued a full fledged course in ‘Aromatherapy’. I have always believed in adding value to my products which inspired me to further pursue a course in ‘Cosmetology & Formulations’ from Vaze College, Mumbai.
A career in this field was not as easy as it appears today, considering 20 years ago it was quite nascent and the ‘Beauty Industry’ had just begun to sow its seeds in India. I worked around limited opportunities to start my own line of products. What started with a few assignments for service and products has today blossomed into a full fledged business venture with the brand name ’Anita’s’ being well known and widely used in a large number of salons & spa. Working for corporate most definitely teaches you some very important managerial lessons, time management etc. If you are lucky to have a mentor in that organisation you will be able to compress decades into months in terms of learning the tricks of trade.
SJ: Who has been the driving force behind your success?
AG: Besides my determination and will to succeed, my husband has been my backbone in my entire journey.
SJ: What is your advice to our young women who wish to pursue a career in aromatherapy? And is there any specialized qualification that one needs to equip with?
AG: My advice to women entering now would be to ensure that they have some trait that sets them apart. Keen introspection and progressive mastery of the knowledge in your field of choice are the key factors to gain positive momentum in your field.
There are various good institutes in Mumbai that will teach you aromatherapy, but what will set you apart is your passion for your craft, your resilience and your will to succeed.
SJ: What are the various career options for an aromatherapist? Can this yield to be a lucrative career option?
AG: You can have your own set up as a Aromatherapy Practitioner who treats people through aromatherapy.
You can work for a cosmetic company that specializes in aromatherapy.
You can create your own line of products.
You can become an essential oil retailer.
With people in India beginning to prioritize the quality of life, the importance of wellness & hence aromatherapy has gained mammoth proportions . There is an immense scope for aromatherapy products that truly deliver on the promises made to the demanding and enlightened Indian consumer.
SJ: No pain no gain!
What are the roadblocks/challenges you have had to face in the journey to your success?
AG: I have been a hands on entrepreneur. An entrepreneur in a company like mine has to overview many aspects in the company. From cash flow management, hiring staff that is in alignment with your goals, maintaining a work life balance, delegating tasks, deciding on the marketing and product strategies and growing your business etc. So multitasking all of the above efficiently and still being able to maintain your sanity is a challenge that we all have to live up to.
SJ: What has been the high point in your entire journey?
AG: I consider being a part of the wellness fraternity a blessing.
SJ: Post Pandemic, how are you dealing with the new normal especially with reference to the way you will conduct your business?
AG: This pandemic is an extremely tough time for the beauty industry. Most salons & spas are limping to normalcy. A lot of the staff is unable to commute to the office, so work from home is being slowly incorporated in our organisation. It literally feels like I am re-starting again, but this time with 20 years experience.
SJ: What next on the cards for you? Any burning ambition/milestone you wish to achieve?
AG: The pandemic has made me realize how dependent we are on technology. We are launching a DIY line of products called ‘Iora’. This range has been a brain child of the lockdown and I am super excited to see how my new baby grows. This product will be sold on various omni-channels like Flipkart, Amazon, Seniority, Myntra and of course our own e-commerce website-www.ioraindia.com
SJ: Any message to the members of Aspire for Her? And any message for the Foundation in general?
AG: I want to thank Madhura for making me a mentor at AFH. I wish we had such an organisation when we started out, we could have cut decades into months in our career growth. This generation that is seeing this pandemic at the beginning of their careers will be gems in the true sense, as they will be resilient and innovative in their approach going forward from here.
Question: One person, fictional/real and dead/alive that you want to have dinner with
Answer: Anita Roddick
Question: A book on your career field that you would recommend to or readers
Answer: Miracles Happen by Mary Kay
Question: 3 things on your bucket list
1) Launching a very successful & effective B2C product
2) Learn how to play a musical instrument
3)Learn fluid art.