5 Points which impact Marketing Success (or Failure) …

So it is the Annual Appraisal time at work – The time to introspect on the good and not-so-good for the year gone by. Also the time to get feedback on what was good and what was not-so-good; take the lessons and move ahead into a new year.

As a I look back at last year wearing the lens of a marketer, I can say that it has been exciting and excellent. Most importantly, it has been wonderful to see the impact and difference marketing has made on business. As I go down memory lane to see what truly made a difference a few points stand out. In this post, sharing the 5 key points:

Marketing objectives are closely linked to business objectives

The role of marketing has changed significantly over the past few years – especially since the onset of the ‘digital revolution’. From being a supporting enabler for business, marketing is increasingly viewed as the custodian of the customer experience. As a result, success of marketing directly and significantly affects business, and hence it is imperative that marketing objectives are closely linked to business objectives. For e.g.: If a business objective is to be known as a ‘Market Leader in a particular area”, then a possible marketing objective can be to feature in a respected industry / analyst rating report as a Market Leader as an external (analyst / customer / partner) endorsement of a company’s brand is critical to achieve this objective. Or if a business objective is to increase business growth by X%, then a possible marketing objective can be to generate Y leads – where is a multiplier of X based on typical conversion metrics

Marketing has well defined “measurable” objectives

Again marketing teams have always known to focus / report the ‘soft / qualitative’ aspects, and hence marketers are increasingly under pressure to demonstrate the marketing impact. The most effective way to showcase any impact is through metrics. The only pre-requisite to capture and report metrics is to know what to measure and how to measure. For this, it is critical to have a sign-off with business on what “measurable” objectives are to be worked on. For e.g: If one of the focus areas for business is to create a compelling content strategy to demonstrate thought leadership for external branding and customer lead generation, then a measurable objective could be to publish 1 content piece a month on the company blog. This becomes easy to track, measure and report every month as opposed to an objective which states “Create content to reflect thought leadership”. Defining measurable objectives at the start of the year helps set expectations among all stakeholders, and provides a direction for marketing to focus their efforts.

Regular Monitoring, Tracking and Reporting “marketing outcomes”

Again, while defining ‘marketing objectives’ is the first step – continuous monitoring, tracking and reporting the marketing outcomes on a regular basis is key. Leveraging the power of tools and technology to capture key marketing metrics and sharing these metrics with key business / leadership stakeholders on an ongoing basis is critical for long term success of marketing initiatives.

Being able to show the co-relation between “marketing outcomes and business impact”

Again, this is one area where most marketers and businesses struggle with. How to show the co-relation between “marketing outcomes and business impact”? For e.g: Let us assume a B2B company hosted an online event – like a webinar or a virtual round table. The event was outstanding with an attendance of 500+ audience. Now most marketers are always asked “OK Great. But so what?”. In general, online / offline events are great opportunities to identify prospects and convert them to potential leads through focused lead nurturing initiatives. However, such initiatives need time and effort. And time is money – so it becomes important to track both. It is exactly for answering the marketing ROI questions that marketing technology in the form of automation solutions plays a key role.

Marketing sits on the table with Business, Technology, Finance and Operations

Last but not the least – Marketing has to be in-sync with business, technology, finance and operations. Marketing has to be part of the discussions, has to be in-tune with key data and has to be a key participant in decision making. For this, a shared vision and goals along with an environment which fosters communication and collaboration with the customer at the center of the universe is key for marketing and business success.

That’s my view. What do you think? Leave a comment to let me know..

A version of this post was first published on LinkedIn Pulse

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Connect with me on Nischala’s Social World Columnist / Byline in : Economic Times | Huffingtonpost | Business2Community | WomensWeb | Sheroes India | PeopleMatters | YoWoTo | 12Most.com | Parentous
Blog : Nischala’s Space, Thoughts, Expressions [Featured in Top Marketing Blogs in India, Directory of Best Indian Blogs, Alltop]
Twitter : @nimu9 [Featured among Sheroes Must Follow Indian Women on Twitter (2014) , 50 Indian Women to follow on Twitter(2012)]


Interviews and Media Mentions
Newspaper Interview | Twittering Heights (Deccan Chronicle, 2015)
Quoted in “Open Letter to Women looking for job
Quoted in “The Best Advice you’ll receive as young women starting your careers
Interview | My blogging journey – How it came to be?
Interview | A wise Blogger
Interview | Secrets to Successful Blogging
Quoted in “Are entrepreneurs born or made?”

What the new age working mom endures everyday, and why I admire her?

A version of this post first appeared on Huffingtonpost

Every mother works. No option here! The only thing that varies is whether you work at home or in an office, whether you get paid or not. I’ve been a working mother, in the traditional sense of the term, for five years now. There were highs and lows. I experimented, I evolved and overall I felt enriched. But no, it wasn’t easy. Nor do I ever expect it to be.

Many perspectives have been shared on this subject, a lot of viewpoints have gone viral, cases in point being Indra Nooyi , Michelle Obama, Sheryl Sandberg and Marie Ann Slaughter.

A lot of women in positions of relative power have highlighted multiple perspectives on being a working mother. I’ve also written a lot of this subject, but I believe there is more to be said on the day-to-day trials, tribulations and turmoil of a working mom.

First things first. You will struggle to be understood. The previous generation of men and women will not always “get” your work-life balance or resonance. Your stay-at-home counterparts are also likely to show little support or empathy for your career and life choices. Your generation of men are almost always silent observers, not quite sure of what to make of your decision to navigate multiple worlds. As for the kids? They will almost always ask you tough questions for which you don’t really have answers!

Tough position to be in, right? But a working mother puts herself in that position, and is striving to make it work every single day of her life. What does she go through every day?

1. She has to live by her choices and their consequences

For a very long time, I thought that the most difficult thing in life is to make a choice. Because making a choice ends ambiguity and uncertainty. Making a choice is somewhat binding in what you can do.

But I was wrong. Ever since I became a mother, I recognized that making a choice is the first step of the journey. The hardest part is living the choice – every day! Starting with the choice of going back to work and when, to how you strive / struggle to honor professional commitments – which may be driven by deeply personal reasons or pragmatic considerations. Whatever the reason, many women are compelled to make tough choices as they navigate the trajectory of their life and career.

What does this mean in real-life terms? It means being unable to celebrate a career milestone because your child is ill. Or having a messy home and hungry kids to tend to after a long, hard day at the office. Or worse, when you are told that your child is not thriving at school in some way because you work. Or when the child is sick and you are stuck in a meeting, stewing in guilt. Or the day when your kid says “You are a bad mummy”. Of course, there are days when you succeed at work and come home to the hugs of two happy and calm children. This last scenario, of course, is a rare one!

Living your choices amidst the everyday guilt, judgment and just the chaos of daily life is tough. What do you prioritize in any one day? Being a mother or a wife or a professional or a friend or something else? And every time you make a choice, you choose to not be a zillion other things. And that is tough because you have to live with your choice and those zillion other things for the rest of your life.

2. She has to flip between two different states of being : Of Focus at Work and Flow at Home

Over the years I’ve come to believe that there are basically two states of being. One is of focus, in which you give your full time, energy and attention to the end goal and work towards it. The second is of being in flow when you are adapting and molding to what your immediate environment expects or needs from you — you are fluid, so that the people around you can focus on what they want or need to do.

The workplace environment demands that employees be focused — on corporate goals and business objectives. On the other hand, being a mother is essentially about being in state of flow where you tend to cater to the needs of the family.

Viewed in isolation, both these states are good places to be, and suitable for different situations. They need a different mind-set, emotional quotient and way to conduct yourself.

Personally, one of the hardest things about being a working mother is having to oscillate between being in the state of focus while at work, and in state of flow while at home. The transition between these two states has to be seamless as the boundaries between work and home are blurring.

3. She lacks role models who are working mothers

The current generation of working women are in a position of unique advantage and disadvantage. On one hand, it is a point in history when there are more women than ever are active contributors to the workplace. And their performance is measured by uniform and well-defined workplace policy and standards. The flip-side is that no one cares what your personal circumstances are – all men and women must clock a certain number of hours to deliver work outcomes – which usually require 40 or 50 hours work week.

The other interesting point is that the benchmark of reference for being a mother is the previous generation of mothers — who were mostly stay-at-home moms.

Today’s young mother is almost always compared and judged against her mother or mother-in-law at home and against her father, father-in-law and husband in her role as a worker. And that is tough. Because being a mother is a 24-hour job, while being a professional is about working 8-12 hours a day. Now, as much as I’d like for a day to have more than 24 hours, I can’t change how the planet works. And I don’t have any role model for how a working mother should be and conduct herself on a day to day basis. Neither do the people around me. So it’s a hazy picture, and everyone has their own perspective.

4. She deals with failure every other day but must plan for success

Almost every working mother I know feels like a “failure” every other day. Why? Because she almost always fails to live up to expectations – her expectations of herself as well as those of others, including family and colleagues. With few role models to emulate, she tends to expect far too much of herself as do others. This is exhausting in the long run.

The solution? Redefine success and failure, and make peace with the fact that there will always be others who won’t appreciate your life choices. It’s not easy to live with judgment, labels, comparisons and criticism from all quarters, especially since you don’t even have time to sit and sulk. If you do, the next thing you’re expected to do is delayed!

So, that’s the inside story of a working mother for you, and because she endures so much almost every single day I personally believe she is worth admiring.

Do you agree? Leave a comment to let me know what you admire the most about any working mother you’ve known or observed.

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Connect with me on Nischala’s Social World
Columnist / Byline in : Economic Times | Huffingtonpost | Business2Community | WomensWeb | Sheroes India | PeopleMatters | YoWoTo | 12Most.com | Parentous
Blog : Nischala’s Space, Thoughts, Expressions [Featured in Top Marketing Blogs in India, Directory of Best Indian Blogs, Alltop]
Twitter : @nimu9 [Featured among Sheroes Must Follow Indian Women on Twitter (2014) , 50 Indian Women to follow on Twitter(2012)]

Interviews and Media Mentions
Newspaper Interview | Twittering Heights (Deccan Chronicle, 2015)
Quoted in “Open Letter to Women looking for job
Quoted in “The Best Advice you’ll receive as young women starting your careers
Interview | My blogging journey – How it came to be?
Interview | A wise Blogger
Interview | Secrets to Successful Blogging
Quoted in “Are entrepreneurs born or made?”

Round-up of my best posts on Working Mothers.

Happy Mothers Day

Tomorrow is Mother’s Day! So, Happy Mother’s Day in advance… According to Wikipedia, Mother’s Day is a modern celebration honoring one’s own mother, as well as motherhood, maternal bonds, and the influence of mothers in society. It is celebrated on various days in many parts of the world – most commonly in the months of March and May!

Social media is abuzz on whether mother’s need a special day to celebrate motherhood. Of course, NO! Once you are a mother, you will always be a mother – And no one can take that from you! But YES! If there is a day to celebrate a little extra and you can afford it, then why not?

The word “Working Mom” is somewhat obvious, and always compels me think. I mean, every mother I know works.. works hard…works every single day of her life…It is just “How she defines her work? Where all she works (at home or even beyond)? And how much her work is valued?” which makes all the difference!

Ever since I’ve become a mother myself, my respect and admiration for all mothers (including my own) has increased manifold. And if she is able to pursue a career beyond her domestic responsibilities – then that is truly commendable. Because from experience I know that it is no easy task! Whatever you do, where ever are you are in the world – if you are a  ‘working mom(or careerist mom)‘ , then my deepest respect, admiration, appreciation and applause is with you!

If you’ve read my blogs, you will know that several of my posts are around what it takes to make it work as a ‘working mom(or careerist mom)‘. So on the occasion of Mother’s Day, I’m sharing a round-up of my best posts.. I hope you enjoy reading them as much as a I enjoyed writing them! And just so you know, my journey as a writer / blogger began at the same time as my journey as a mother – So both are somewhat co-related and dear to me!

After Maternity Leave | Getting back to work

Dilemmas of Working Mothers

Why is it so hard for working mothers in India?

300+ years of women at work | What were the key enablers?

The Questions which impact and influence her work life

The Working Mother’s Career Continuum : Focus | Flex | Flow

Getting back to work after a career break – What is required?

Working Mothers – Is there a Magic Mantra?

Productivity Lessons from Ants

Are you clear about your priorities?

Think about your ROTI (Return on Time Invested)

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Connect with me on Nischala’s Social World
Columnist / Byline in : Economic Times | Huffingtonpost | Business2Community | WomensWeb | Sheroes India | PeopleMatters | YoWoTo | 12Most.com | Parentous
Blog : Nischala’s Space, Thoughts, Expressions [Featured in Top Marketing Blogs in India, Directory of Best Indian Blogs, Alltop]
Twitter : @nimu9 [Featured among Sheroes Must Follow Indian Women on Twitter (2014) , 50 Indian Women to follow on Twitter(2012)]

Interviews and Media Mentions
Newspaper Interview | Twittering Heights (Deccan Chronicle, 2015)
Quoted in “Open Letter to Women looking for job
Quoted in “The Best Advice you’ll receive as young women starting your careers
Interview | My blogging journey – How it came to be?
Interview | A wise Blogger
Interview | Secrets to Successful Blogging
Quoted in “Are entrepreneurs born or made?”

My 1st Economic Time article | The Women At Work Manifesto

According to the World Fact Book, the 2014 gender sex ratio is India was 892 females per 1000 males. So she is born, then what?

According to the latest Indian census, literacy rate among Indian women is 65.46%. According to the District Information System for Education (DISE) (2011-12) report, girl’s enrolment at the primary level (Class I-V) stands at 48.35%. At higher education level, 45% of female are enrolled in under graduate and post graduate courses. So she managed to study, then what?

According to ILO (International Labor Organization) 2015 World Economic Social Outlook Report (WESO), the female labor force participation rate in India was 31.2%. Also, India ranks among the bottom 20 countries in a list of 131 in female labour force participation (FLFP). So she got a job, then what? Did she keep the job? How long?

 According to 2014 Sheroes India Women At Work report , 5% of women are at senior/ leadership levels. That number speaks a lot

Bottom-line | From birth till the last breath – she struggles to survive, chooses to endure and strives to succeed.

While the numbers look dismal in an absolute sense, every day I come across real stories and narratives of real women at work who are trying and striving to make it all work – with grand dreams, grit, hard-work, passion, confidence, determination, perseverance, ecosystem support and divine grace. So there is hope and inspiration.

With about 15 years of corporate work experience during which I have experienced the highs and lows of a corporate career, and also experienced the 3M madness – Marriage and Motherhood twice – I can confidently say that it has been a mixed bag of experiences. On the positive side, it has been a truly enriching, evolving and exciting journey this far.

And so the topic of women at work is close to my heart. One, I am a woman. Two, I’m a working mother. Three, I honestly believe that gender diversity at the workplace is critical for balanced growth and continued success of an organization, the economy, the society and world at large.

Along the way, I have recognized that for women at work to have a fair chance at a long term career and a possibility to reach the top, some early investments are critical and make all the difference. And sooner they are made, the better for her career.

In this post I’m sharing the 9 investments I believe all women should make at the start of their careers.

ET - Women At Work

Knowledge Capital

We live in the knowledge era. Where knowledge is a source of competitive advantage, where knowledge is critical for you to get a job, keep your job, perform your work and also get paid for it. Education of the girl child is the first step to build a strong foundation of knowledge. But beyond that, a lot of knowledge is critical to stay relevant at the workplace. The good news is that in today’s era, knowledge is easily accessible and free – thanks to technology. In the long run, the knowledge which truly makes a difference is specialist knowledge (depth), applied knowledge (experience) or multi-disciplinary knowledge (combination of two / three knowledge areas).

Many women tend to stop learning consciously once they start their formal careers; and not investing in upgrading one’s knowledge can cost any professional dearly in the long run. Hence, it is important for women to consciously and continuously invest in building, enriching and enhancing their knowledge base.

Good-Health Capital

The number of health-related issues is only increasing by the day, and this impacts woman too. It is common knowledge that a vast majority of women tend to put their health and well-being as the last priority. Consequently, the number of women who give up on their careers simply because health does not permit them to work beyond an age or stage or phase of their life is increasing by the day. Physical heath, emotional heath and intellectual health all play a part in one’s overall good-health; and good health can sometimes be the only key factor which determines a woman’s career longevity.

So if you are a woman at work and serious about a long term career, make it a priority to invest in your overall health and well-being. In the long run, that will hold you in good stead.

 Work Performance Capital

There is no substitute for excellence in year-on-year work performance. This is true for everyone, and applies for women too. Hence it is important to ensure you deliver at work what you signed-up for.

Good-will Capital

Almost all women who had long careers will vouch that if there was one thing that helped them navigate through the lows / fluid-phases of their careers, it was purely good-will of the employers, managers and teams they were a part of.

As a case in point, marriage and motherhood are important milestones in the career journey of any women at work. And both almost always make her vulnerable, and compel her to make tough career choices. In such situations, the only grace which enables women to keep their careers afloat can be good-will.

The thing about good-will is that it has to be earned – With time, with your work performance and with your attitude. Good-will can be earned in many ways – By going the extra mile when a team needs it, or stepping up when there is a crisis, or making a difference when it truly matters. So as women at work, make it count when you can; and earn the good-will capital.

 Network / Social Capital

After a point in anyone’s career ‘professional networks’ play a key role in providing career opportunities, growth possibilities and new paradigms of work. This is true for anyone, but more important for women as they are not naturally wired to invest in building their professional networks – both in the real and virtual world. Especially in the context of women, personal networks and support systems also go a long way in providing the elusive work life resonance.

As women at work, it is important to take the time and effort to invest, nurture and build professional and personal networks and relationships beyond your immediate line of work. Agreed it takes time, effort and energy. But what if by that one social connection you invested in, you land your dream job? Or you get the next career break you’d always wanted? So make an effort to build your network / social capital. In the long run, it will see you in good stead.

Skill Capital

A long term career is about having the right skills to take and make the next step in the career ladder. There are some skills that you are born with. But in the long run, self-acquired and personality development skills make all the difference.

In the context of women at work, the following skills are key to survive and thrive – Career Planning, Business Communication (Oral / Written), (Salary) Negotiation, Creative Thinking, Political Savviness, Complex problem solving and Decision Making. It is important for women to understand lacunas in their current skill matrix and to consciously find ways to build and enhance these skills over time.

Technology Capital

You think it, technology can do it. There is a technology solution for almost everything that needs to be done on a daily basis. There is a mobile app for just about everything you’d want to do. You just need to search for it, install it and make it work in your context.

Especially for women at work, knowing and embracing technology and mobile apps for making everyday life simpler, faster and efficient is critical for long term career sustenance and growth. Be it grocery shopping, meal planning, bill-payouts, child safety, education or whatever your need is, ensure you invest in finding the technology solution relevant to your context and circumstance. And use it. The power of technology is in the application.

Financial Capital

This hardly needs any explanation as money does make the world go round. While the highs of financial earning and freedom tend to cloud one’s thoughts, emotions and spending patterns during the initial career years; it is important for women to understand that true long term financial freedom comes from making an effort to understand how personal finances work, to invest money wisely, spend judiciously and review your finances periodically. In the long run, it all adds up to building your financial capital.

Personal Brand Capital

Personal branding is really about you and your work shining through among the crowd. Key to this is to own up your work, speak up when it matters and ‘stand out’ where it counts – so you can positively influence and manage others perceptions of you.

A key pre-requisite for personal branding is to have clarity on what you’d like your personal brand to stand for, and to find compelling ways to make your work and brand stand-out. This is even more important in the context of women at work because very many women are naturally wired to shy away from the spotlight or find comfort, solace and satisfaction to play a supporting role. One effective medium which women can use effectively is the power of social media and (real / virtual) communities to make your views, voice and work sparkle.

“As you sow, so you shall reap” – This is true for money, for careers and for life. What career investments did you make today? What investments do you plan to make tomorrow?

Leave a comment to let us know.

First published on Economic Times

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Connect with me on Nischala’s Social World
Columnist / Byline in : Economic Times | Huffingtonpost | Business2Community | WomensWeb | Sheroes India | PeopleMatters | YoWoTo | 12Most.com | Parentous
Blog : Nischala’s Space, Thoughts, Expressions [Featured in Directory of Best Indian Blogs, Alltop]
Twitter : @nimu9 [Featured among Sheroes Must Follow Indian Women on Twitter (2014) , 50 Indian Women to follow on Twitter(2012)]

Interviews and Media Mentions
Newspaper Interview | Twittering Heights (Deccan Chronicle, 2015)
Quoted in “Open Letter to Women looking for job
Quoted in “The Best Advice you’ll receive as young women starting your careers
Interview | My blogging journey – How it came to be?
Interview | A wise Blogger
Interview | Secrets to Successful Blogging
Quoted in “Are entrepreneurs born or made?”

When Mr. Amitabh Bachchan speaks – What you can learn by listening?

Mr Amitabh Bachchan

I recently saw a video interview with Mr.Amitabh Bachchan and found it an enjoyable watch.

The interview conversation stayed with me long after I saw the video, and I wondered Why?

Was it the voice?
Was it the words?
Was it the person?

Was it the articulation?
Was it the legend?

Over the years I have come to believe that oral communication in general, and public speaking in specific is both a skill and art –  Something which I admire deeply in people who are able to do this effortlessly almost always! I have a hypothesis when it comes to verbal communication – People usually listen to you because of who you are (your name and any associated fame), where you come from (your life story), what your speaking about (the topic), how you speak (the power of your words, delivery style and engagement with an audience) or your relationship with them.

In my life, I’ve heard several people speak in public (from CXO’s / business leaders, to politicians, to religious gurus, to motivational speakers, to teachers / professors, etc) and have been in awe with the prowess and power of the oral word in some of them. Outstanding speakers compel you to listen, create an instant connection with you, and captivate your mind and heart that you are fully consumed with what the speaker has to say.

In my personal view, Mr.Amitabh Bachchan is an outstanding speaker. Almost every interview of his that I’ve heard, I’ve given my full attention to listen to what he is saying. I always believed it was because he was Mr. Amitabh Bachchan – The Bollywood legend. But when he had my ‘close-to-whole-hearted attention’ when I was tending to my howling babies (Yeah! If you’re a new age parent, you’d know exactly what decibel level I’m talking about here :) – I knew that the reason was much beyond his name.

So in this post, I have tried to list down the reasons why I believe that Mr. Amitabh Bachchan’s voice and words stand out. And possibly lessons for many of us on how to improve oral communication.

(1) Find your ‘voice’ 
Find your ‘voice’ – both literally and figuratively. This one stands out in all of Mr. Bachchan’s communication. His deep powerful baritone is so unique that you cannot miss it and it almost instantly draws your attention. Agreed that not everyone has a gifted voice, but we can all try to find our personal voice which really highlights the uniqueness of who we are, and find ways to make it shine amidst the noise.

(2) Speak slowly
Again, in an era when everyone and everything is rushed, I find it refreshingly wonderful to hear someone who talks slowly. The more I listen to Mr Bachchan – the more I am convinced that there is beauty, clarity, charm and power in talking slowly. And the more I think about this, I realize that the best speakers almost always speak slowly

(3) Use simple language
I’ve never heard Mr.Bachchan speak and thought I don’t understand what he is trying to say. Never. Never ever. That’s a skill, That’s an art. That requires clarity in thought. That requires power over a language. That requires comprehension of what you want to convey. That requires one to be a child at heart and child-like in your mind, which is tough for most adults who find solace in embracing complexity – in words, in thought and in articulation. But here’s the thing | The simpler your communication, the easier it is – for you to say it and for them to get it!

(4) Pause / Breathe before you respond
A pause / deep breath before you say something is one of the most effective ways to get your thoughts around what you really want to say. That is absolutely essential in today’s age where it is so easy to misinterpret anyone’s words

(5) Tell stories, Your personal stories – There is power in story-telling
Storytelling is a powerful tool to share your message, and it is for this reason that storytelling is one of the most popular methods used to communicate with children. And Mr.Bachchan almost always tells a story (many times a personal tale) to give a message and convey his point of view.

(6) There are many ways to answer a question – A smile,  silence, A question, A gaze all work!
The purpose of conducting any interview is to ask questions. And in very many videos I’ve seen, Mr. Bachchan has responded with an answer, or a smile, silence, a question or a gaze.Again, all very effective oral communication strategies when you are addressing a large audience, and excellent ways of saying what you don’t want to say :)

Those are my lessons. Have you learned any communication lessons by watching Mr.Amitabh Bachchan speak? Leave a comment to let me know

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Connect with me on Nischala’s Social World
Columnist : Huffingtonpost | Business2Community | WomensWeb | Sheroes India | PeopleMatters | YoWoTo | 12Most.com | Parentous
Blog : Nischala’s Space, Thoughts, Expressions [Featured in Directory of Best Indian Blogs, Alltop]
Twitter : @nimu9 [Featured among Sheroes Must Follow Indian Women on Twitter (2014) , 50 Indian Women to follow on Twitter(2012)]

Interviews and Media Mentions
Newspaper Interview | Twittering Heights (Deccan Chronicle, 2015)
Quoted in “Open Letter to Women looking for job
Quoted in “The Best Advice you’ll receive as young women starting your careers
Interview | My blogging journey – How it came to be?
Interview | A wise Blogger
Interview | Secrets to Successful Blogging
Quoted in “Are entrepreneurs born or made?”

5 Questions to answer before you start BLOGGING!

Now a days, I get a lot of calls, mails, messages and questions about blogging. As a case in point, a friend called a few days back and said “I want to start a blog. Should I even do it?”. A work colleague was inspired by my blogging journey and accolades, and asked me “I want to start blogging. You make it seem easy. Is it that easy?”. A relative read the media coverage my blog received recently and wrote to me saying “I want to blog, How do I go about it?

While I appreciate the interest, intent and spirit behind all these questions, let me lay out some facts before you.

I recently read an article which highlighted that there were 220+ million blogs in the blog-o-sphere. And that there are 3 Million new posts published everyday. Those numbers are mind-boggling! Interestingly, I also heard that the average human attention span in today’s digital era is less than 10 seconds!

So before you start, be cognizant of the fact that you are entering a highly crowded and competitive world, where there is a content aplenty, and individual attention span is abysmal. Hence, it is extremely important to ask yourself some important questions before you start blogging, lest you be disillusioned after you start blogging.

In this post, I am sharing the 5 questions most important questions. So think through and answer honestly before you start posting!

Start Blogging

Question 1 : What is your big WHY of blogging?

This is the most important question. Is it for sharing, is it for branding, is it for the money? Whatever it is, be clear on the answer. And realistic on your expectations based on this

Question 2 : Do you LOVE writing?

You cannot sustain a blog / blogging if you don’t love writing. So if all that you’ve written in your life are official mails, then I doubt if you really like writing. If you love a related skill / art form like photography / painting, then creating a blog on this makes complete sense.

Question 3 : How much time can you commit to blogging?

Blogging is a journey. A slow and evolving one. It takes time and effort, and there is no overnight glory or success. So be clear on how much time you can give to your blog and how frequently. Starting a blog is  easy. Keeping it updated is always a challenge unless you consciously commit time.

Question 4 : Do you know what you want to blog about?

Again, think through what you want to blog about. Is it something you know or do? Again, in the long run the biggest challenge is to find topics to blog about. So think through a theme or broad areas to start off with. You can expand later, but there has to be a theme that you stick to for 6 -12 months

Question 5 : Why do you think anyone will read you?

Most important, what is in it for any reader? Why should he / she read what you have to say amidst 220+ million blogs? What’s your sparkle?

If you have convincing answers to all 5 questions, go ahead and start your blog today.

On that note, Happy Blogging!

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Connect with me on Nischala’s Social World
Columnist / Byline in : Economic Times | Huffingtonpost | Business2Community | WomensWeb | Sheroes India | PeopleMatters | YoWoTo | 12Most.com | Parentous
Blog : Nischala’s Space, Thoughts, Expressions [Featured in Top Marketing Blogs in India, Directory of Best Indian Blogs, Alltop]
Twitter : @nimu9 [Featured among Sheroes Must Follow Indian Women on Twitter (2014) , 50 Indian Women to follow on Twitter(2012)]

Interviews and Media Mentions
Newspaper Interview | Twittering Heights (Deccan Chronicle, 2015)
Quoted in “Open Letter to Women looking for job
Quoted in “The Best Advice you’ll receive as young women starting your careers
Interview | My blogging journey – How it came to be?
Interview | A wise Blogger
Interview | Secrets to Successful Blogging
Quoted in “Are entrepreneurs born or made?”

 

What determines “HER” Career Path?

I’ve been in the corporate world for about 15 years now. In this tenure, I have been fortunate to experience in my career (up close and personal) the great, good, bad & ugly; and I survived.

Along the way, I’ve also seen a lot of women / mothers navigate their career trajectories very differently at different phases. Everyone’s context / circumstances are different, and hence so are their choices. And yet, there seems to be some drivers on how she makes those choices to make peace with her work and her life.

So what are those variables which determine her ‘career path’? Sharing my views in the infographic below.

Career Path

As I sign-off, I leave you with a thought..

For a very long time, I used to believe that making a choice was tough!

But now as a working mother, I believe that living your choice everyday is the toughest.

What do you think? Leave a comment to let me know

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Connect with me on Nischala’s Social World
Columnist : Huffingtonpost | Business2Community | WomensWeb | Sheroes India | PeopleMatters | YoWoTo | 12Most.com | Parentous
Blog : Nischala’s Space, Thoughts, Expressions [Featured in Directory of Best Indian Blogs, Alltop]
Twitter : @nimu9 [Featured among Sheroes 20 Must Follow Indian Women on Twitter (2014) , 50 Indian Women to follow on Twitter(2012)]

Interviews and Media Mentions
Newspaper Interview | Twittering Heights (Deccan Chronicle, 2015)
Mention in | “Open Letter to Women looking for job
Mention in | “The Best Advice you’ll receive as young women starting your careers
Interview | My blogging journey – How it came to be?
Interview | A wise Blogger
Interview | Secrets to Successful Blogging
Quoted in | “Are entrepreneurs born or made?

The Key Questions which impact and influence “HER” work life

I believe there is power in questions.

The right questions at the right time can make all the difference.

Just acknowledging that the question is important, right and relevant can sometimes be the best thing that can happen in life.

As I observe, converse, analyze and appreciate the complexity of issues of Women At Work, I find that there are some questions which are more important than others. These questions determine her career, and eventually her life.

What are these?” you might wonder

Sharing them below in the latest infographic I created. Like it? Do you think there are more questions which affect the life of women at work? Leave a comment to let me know

Women Key Questions for Career

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Connect with me on Nischala’s Social World
Columnist : Huffingtonpost | Business2Community | WomensWeb | Sheroes India | PeopleMatters | YoWoTo | 12Most.com | Parentous
Blog : Nischala’s Space, Thoughts, Expressions [Featured in Directory of Best Indian Blogs, Alltop]
Twitter : @nimu9 [Featured among Sheroes Must Follow Indian Women on Twitter (2014) , 50 Indian Women to follow on Twitter(2012)]

Interviews and Media Mentions
Newspaper Interview | Twittering Heights (Deccan Chronicle, 2015)
Quoted in “Open Letter to Women looking for job
Quoted in “The Best Advice you’ll receive as young women starting your careers
Interview | My blogging journey – How it came to be?
Interview | A wise Blogger
Interview | Secrets to Successful Blogging
Quoted in “Are entrepreneurs born or made?”

Men v/s Women | Color Choices and Preferences

Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus” said John Gray. In my personal view, Men are from Mercury and Women are from Pluto” – I say this just to highlight the differences is how men and women differ in very many things – Be it what we see, how we interpret things, what we understand and take-away from the same situation, how we are naturally wired, our preferences / likes / dislikes, etc. The list is endless.

As a marketer and communication professional, very many times I need to decide on the colors to use in different communication. From experience, I know that the colors make a lot of difference in how a communication is received. And hence, I was particularly interested when I came across the below infographic on how men and women view “colors”. Though dated, it highlights some key insights.

Key Take-Away for me was “Blue reigns supreme” – and it is no wonder that almost all the large brands use blue generously (For e.g: FaceBook, Twitter, IBM, Intel, IE, etc.)

[Src: Kissmetrics]

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Connect with me on Nischala’s Social World
Columnist : Huffingtonpost | Business2Community | WomensWeb | Sheroes India | PeopleMatters | YoWoTo | 12Most.com | Parentous
Blog : Nischala’s Space, Thoughts, Expressions [Featured in Directory of Best Indian Blogs, Alltop]
Twitter : @nimu9 [Featured among Sheroes 20 Must Follow Indian Women on Twitter (2014) , 50 Indian Women to follow on Twitter(2012)]

Interviews and Media Mentions
Newspaper Interview | Twittering Heights (Deccan Chronicle, 2015)
Quoted in “Open Letter to Women looking for job
Quoted in “The Best Advice you’ll receive as young women starting your careers
Interview | My blogging journey – How it came to be?
Interview | A wise Blogger
Interview | Secrets to Successful Blogging
Quoted in “Are entrepreneurs born or made?”

Infographic | All About Social Media Monitoring Tools

Everyone knows that Social Media is BIG, but Social Media Monitoring is a ? – In terms of time, focus, priority and effort. Whether you are a marketer / even otherwise – if you spend time on social media – it is worthwhile to monitor and track social behaviors – Data always speaks – The insights, inferences and implications are for you to draw. But the start is always looking at multiple views of real-time integrated data, and asking the right questions so you understand social media analytics better.

Many of us wonder what to track and how? So when I came across this comprehensive infographic on Social Media Monitoring – I thought it was worthwhile to share on the blog. It is an overview and just the start – But once the building blocks are laid, then it is easy to build and enhance the monitoring processes and tools

[Src: KISSMetrics]

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Connect with me on Nischala’s Social World
Columnist : Huffingtonpost | Business2Community | WomensWeb | Sheroes India | PeopleMatters | YoWoTo | 12Most.com | Parentous
Blog : Nischala’s Space, Thoughts, Expressions [Featured in Directory of Best Indian Blogs, Alltop]
Twitter : @nimu9 [Featured among Sheroes Must Follow Indian Women on Twitter (2014) , 50 Indian Women to follow on Twitter(2012)]

Interviews and Media Mentions
Newspaper Interview | Twittering Heights (Deccan Chronicle, 2015)
Mention in | “Open Letter to Women looking for job
Mention in | “The Best Advice you’ll receive as young women starting your careers
Interview | My blogging journey – How it came to be?
Interview | A wise Blogger
Interview | Secrets to Successful Blogging
Quoted in | “Are entrepreneurs born or made?