Her vision to empower, inspire and celebrate women in corporate coincides with ours. Her perseverance to balance her feet in many shoes inspires us. We are honoured to be in conversation with Krusha Sahjwani Malkani, founder of The Pink Thread, Regional Business Head at Sociabble, and an avid reader and writer.
Krusha grew up in Mumbai and went to both school and college there. She started working full time at 19 alongside graduation. After this, she pursued her masters in international business in Singapore and then worked with Sociabble in Paris for a few months before she came back home. To Mumbai.
And she brought Sociabble with her.
On The Professional Front
How has your experience at Sociabble helped you develop skills you find extremely useful in your professional life?
Sociabble has been like my first baby. I had to learn it all on my own. The product, the market, marketing, operations, management, sales etc. And with every few months once I figured it out, it grew and there was something new to learn. That's what makes it exciting though.
As someone who helped Sociabble achieve huge success, what are some difficulties you had to overcome to reach these heights?
Patience was a big one, still is. I brought Sociabble to India when the market for the product wasn't mature which meant a lot of energy went into educating over selling. I had to always keep the big picture in mind even though at that point it wasn't visible at all. Rejection and negotiation were big lessons too.
You once quoted, "the value of giving people experiences before they need them is very high". How do you think we can encourage this in the workplace?
I read that in a book recently and I realised how it makes so much sense and I deploy it as a manager. For example I'll give a new employee the opportunity to deal with an angry client before it's his or her responsibility. That way she has the back up and she's learned the skill before she needs it. It's what coaches do in sports all the time. Train players for different roles before they need to play it. For eg train your batsmen to be a wicketkeeper or your centre forward to be your goalie.
On Being A Woman And An Ally
As the founder of The Pink Thread, how would you define the importance of women leading other women?
I believe strongly in the concept of ‘collaborate, don't compete’. And that's the idea behind the pink thread too. I hate it when people say women pull each other down. It's because for the longest time there would be just one seat for a woman and hence so many would fight over that one spot. But now we must move from the scarcity mindset to one of abundance and we have a much better shot at it if we do it together.
As a working woman in a male dominant society, what are some ways in which you were evidently treated differently?
I think I enjoy the gift of indifference as armour when I choose to. So I believe more often than not there have probably been instances I've been treated differently but I've honestly not noticed. That also does mean I didn't have it as bad for sure. I've been lucky.
Society often imposes certain expectations on women, for example being married before the age of 30. However everyone's timeline is different, and people define success or settlement on their own terms. What are your thoughts on this? Did you set a timeline for yourself before starting your career?
If I'm being honest I did hope I got married before 30 only because of the biological clock since I do want a kid one day and I wanted enough time with my husband before that happened at home and to travel. I didn't want to feel rushed. But I was very clear that it would happen whenever it does and I'd only get married when I was in love. Lucky for me I found the love of my life at 24 and got married at 26. I do believe everyone has their own timelines. Not everyone wants the same things and should not be forced to. Even just getting married may not be what every girl wants anymore and that's perfectly alright. There's beauty in difference. We must celebrate it. I also believe though that just to prove my career is important to me, I refuse to give up to the joys of marriage, motherhood or such other feminine aspects of life. Men have been enjoying them along with careers for years so why should I have to choose between them? I want both!
On Being In Love With Words
We believe that when you aren't working, you are writing. How therapeutic or significant is writing to you, and how did you develop the interest?
Writing is honestly something I've done since I was a kid. It comes very naturally to me. First, it's personal therapy. And then over the years when people read anything I wrote I was always pushed to write professionally and now I've finally been doing that more over the last two years.
As you juggle your professional career at Sociabble, your work at The Pink Thread, and your passion for writing, is finding a balance between work life and personal life exhausting?
I love all three enough to put in the work. My writing I generally wake up before work to do in the morning. Weekdays are for Sociabble and I carve out time on weekends or post 7 pm some days on weekdays for the pink thread. I still honestly have enough time for myself and my friends and family because there is no household work left to me to manage. I have an incredible support system. And I don't have kids. So I'm sure my answer would change if and when that happened. I'm in awe of all the women who balance life and work with a kid in the picture. I think that changes everything.
You are an avid reader and writer, and in one of your posts, you mentioned how important it is to set 7-10 goals for a year to actually implement them. What are some goals you have set for your recent future?
Well, I only take it one year at a time. So this year a few things I have in my mind is I want to publish my debut fiction novel if the stars align. I have of course a few non disclosable goals for Sociabble. I also want to learn how to drive (yes I never got to it when I was younger). And I want to be able to do a push up!