Like many other Female Disruptors we’ve interviewed over the years, Chahat never thought she’d become an entrepreneur. To her, the goal of entrepreneurship is to make a change in the world. However, she noticed that new innovative products made for a strong impact had a somehow short-lived success. So what was happening?
To Chahat, the issue was clear. Having worked with multiple unicorns, she could see these businesses lacked direction and cohesive strategy. Startups were having a hard time collaborating with their various service providers and consulting firms. What could be done? Chahat founded Impact Study Biz, a company providing quick and accessible, cohesive, and holistic business and brand strategies. The goal is to drive early-stage startups or lead stagnating businesses to newfound success.
When working with startups in her previous career, Chahat saw the amount of money they spent to consult one of the big 5 consulting companies. She also saw how little they were getting out of it. After a quick cost-benefit analysis, she realized the money and time spent didn’t justify the outcome
After lots of research and brainstorming, she started understanding that, to get access to a good holistic strategy, startups need multiple vendors, long timelines, and lots of money. But those characteristics are anti-thetic to startups. Impact Study Biz is an answer to that: good strategy services for a reasonable price. They are quick, cost-effective, use research-backed data, and provide a holistic BRAND+Business Strategy. Unlike their competitors, they do not work on an hourly model, taking a flat fee so clients can manage their budget and still get the desired outcome.
And Chahat doesn’t stop there. Her desire to help brands grow led her to write a book. “My mission is not only to provide access to strategy to all but to also educate people about how they can generate revenue via their brand,” she said. The book, which will be released in a few months is all about how people can leverage branding and artificial intelligence to generate more revenue.
Female disruptors are leaders who have grown from their mistakes and learned from their journey. But how did Chahat become a better leader? Here are her top 5 tips learned from her own experience.
Don’t wait around for a perfect moment to start your business or act on an idea, go for it! Do your risk analysis, develop a business plan, do your homework and take the plunge! As an entrepreneur, you need to take calculated risks. When people look at my business they talk about how they had a similar idea years ago, but the difference between them and me is simple: I acted on my idea. Having an idea doesn’t make you a visionary until you put it into action!
There is no such thing as a guarantee in the business. You make mistakes and you fail, but the important factor between failed and a successful company is the ability to learn from the failures and recover. As an entrepreneur, you need to be able to bounce back, learn from the mistakes and grow. Look at these as learning experiences, that is the secret to success! I have failed many times but each time I became a better person.
I do not let my employees call me Ma’am or Boss. It isn’t a one-woman show! Create a work environment where everyone on your team can accomplish anything and everything. Empower your team to take creative routes, find their ways to do things. This collaboration shapes them to become the future leaders who will uplift your company and give it a solid foundation where you all can grow and thrive together.
To me, when you think you know everything is when you cease to live. I take active steps to improve my skills and knowledge. I recently took Goldman Sachs’ 10,000 Women entrepreneur course to understand how I can run my business better and my clients. These learning opportunities provide you with tools with which you can serve all your stakeholders better.
Admit you do not know everything and you can make a mistake. Build your team with people who are better than you. They will open your mind to new possibilities.
Chahat has faced a lot of sexism throughout her entrepreneur journey, she says. “I was laughed off, disrespected, and ignored by a lot of people because they believed a woman could not understand or can run a management business unless it has something to do with fashion.” But, according to her, the criticism turned her into a stronger and better person. She started focusing on the entrepreneurs bringing positive change to the world and supporting women in business.
But running a business is never a smooth operation. This year, COVID-19 shook her company. Chahat had to completely change her business model due to the pandemic. She narrowed down her company’s offerings to make sure they could keep every single employee. She increased their use of A.I. and digitalized systems to streamline the process. In turn, her company expanded and was able to help small businesses and start-ups to not just sustain but thrive during COVID, globally. She says, “our market predictions were so accurate that we were positively equipped to help our clients get through this economic downturn without any negative effect.”
Any entrepreneur knows that the work can get to you. To fight the daily stress, Chahat recommends a five-minute break every 2 hours. That 5 mins distraction refreshes the mind and gets you focused the moment you get back to work. She also uses the first half of the day to plan and prioritize tasks, assigning them to her employees so she can spend the afternoon focusing on execution without interruptions.
If you’re an entrepreneur yourself, Impact Study Biz might be the push you need to get to the next step. For simple tips and help from Chahat, make sure to keep an eye out for her upcoming book. And in the meantime, follow her on LinkedIn and Instagram.