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Pune-Dress for Success by Ek Aur Ek Gyarah

The Beginning…

In the month of July’14  over a training session tea break I shared the idea with the batch and it paved the way for the mega event “Dress for Success”. The idea was simple – 11 locations – 11 seminars – 11 consultants at 11am and on 20th September (2+9) – the date which adds to 11. Why 11 because Ek aur ek gyarah – and we believe in unity. It was the first of its kind in India, we knew at heart,  that Image consultants without competing with each other were joining hands for a bigger goal – that of promoting Image Management.

The Team

We named it “Team 11 IC’s” – A team of 11 strong women. With personalities ranging from demure to aggressive, how do we work together? We segregated the team into several departments with the responsibilities listed out for each and freezed on 11 locations. And we shared the idea with Rakesh Sir and Suman mam and they gave us an extensive support.

 Rakesh Sir addressed the team on why is team work so important and how we need to focus more on the goal, setting aside our egos.

And there we were – All synergies directed to that one aim in which we truly believed; a complete amalgamation of personas dedicated to a common goal – We were like a mini government with our departments and it was quite a task.

Dress Department – Ritu Punjabi – being the most patient one had the arduous task of dressing the Image consultants along with Nancy & Sherrin Mehta. She had mood boards ready for us with our outfits, accessories and back up.

Volunteer Department –  Shirin Khan &  Micky Gill – An equally demanding  task was to coordinate with volunteers and get their outfits ready and under Shirin Khan & Micky’s  guidance we pulled it off very well

Face book and Marketing department– Akanksha Agarwal and Ruchi Sakhuja Suneja – Like true professionals they have done the marketing, stretching long hours, ensuring that we were always visible. They have dedicated several posts for volunteers (collaborating partners as we called them )pre and post the event.

Documentation coordinators –  Anne Anish , Brunda Manurkar & Rupali Daga- Meticulously keeping logs of all the calls so that we can have an overview of the event and documenting every single piece of information that has appeared in newspapers pre and post event checklist.

Logistics coordinators – Vrushali Shitoleh and Neelima Kajale – Painstaking efforts by these two to visit each location personally and check logistics, click pictures of the venue, prepare checklists before the event for which they have put in hours was truly commendable

Grievance Manager – Nancy Katyal – Keeping together the team and ensuring that all quality checks are in place.

Team coordinator – Pallavi Patgaonkar – Sending minutes of meetings, updates and plans, keeping the group on the same page and supporting them wholeheartedly  and sending time tables to keep the team posted.

The Moments

An event of this magnitude always goes through a cycle of ups and downs and we had our share too. But we held on to each other as a team despite all odds always filling up for each other’s drawbacks and ensuring that we never waver from our goal. Sharing some moments..

The Photo shoot – With the kind suggestion by Rakesh Sir, we all were set for the photo shoot held on 1st September. The long hours spent in deciding the look of the shoot, the frantic search for a good photographer and the location was worth the effort when we saw the outcome.

The Mocks – Nancy Katyal gave the first demo of mock – for the presentation  which was attended by all the 10 consultants followed by each consultant giving mock in the first week of September, The slots were segregated for each consultant. And when any consultant was not happy with their performance they decided to give another one to make sure they performed better than the last time. Sherrin Mehta & Nancy sat through all the mocks and gave their inputs and feedback.

ICBI extensive support – The Ads – It was a stupendous response to the ads in TOI, Ascent and Pune mirror. The phones never once stopped ringing and we were overbooked. We even had to divert callers to other venues. Overnight we felt we were celebrities basking in the limelight. Sending call responses to the head office in time was an assignment in itself, but was a learning experience for all of us.

The Volunteers – They have been the backbone of our event, Despite being our peers or even seniors they have been catalysts in the success of this event. Dinesh Dodiya deserves a special mention for the wonderful video on Dress for success.  

The roles and responsibilities were also rolled out by ICBI that motivate them further , it was called Work, learn and earn. There were some who stepped in at the last minute when other volunteers could not make it due to emergencies. Such was the comradeship in the Pune Image consultants that left us in awe.

The Low’s – With the high comes the low as well. And we experienced it too, just a day prior to the event.

 It was then that Rakesh Agarwal Sir,  Suman Ma’am and  Sandeep Shetty Sir literally boosted our morale,  and took us back to where we belonged – all set to rock Pune!

The D Day

With our best foot forward, head held high and confidence that touched the sky we ruled the event. We sailed off smoothly thanks to the belief and incredible support of ICBI in our dream that brought it to reality, the team coordination, the wonderful support of volunteers and venue partners and the audience who loved every bit of it. The feedback was incredible.

In the profound words of Richard Bach – You are never given a wish without also being given the power to make it come true. You may have to work for it however

We wished… we believed… and we succeeded…. We have Done it , we were able to connect with almost 600 people and this was a big achievement!!!

By: Nancy Katyal

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