Chetana Misra is one among the three Indian women that Facebook recently selected for its first Community Leadership Program (CLP). The recognition is like a shot in the arm for Chetana, who has been driving a separate Facebook community that work closely with 'mompreneurs'
Chetana Misra is the founder of 'MompreneursIndia'. She took a break from work to support her child and decided to build this community to help women entrepreneurs grow.
Chetana continues to work on software projects while she manages the community. Chetana is happy with her independent projects and is creating a community where all her efforts have been recognised.
Mentioning about her page she says, "'MompreneursIndia' has expanded from merely being a networking group for like-minded women to empower them with tools, resources, knowledgeand opportunities to scale their business to greater heights.
Our platform provides you a search tool with which you can quickly search and discover women entrepreneurs anywhere in India. We have also simplified online marketing for you. Research shows that most women have businesses where their target customers are women and kids.
So, we have built a ready audience of 40000+ women on our various online forums readily accessible to you for promoting your products and services. We have focused our efforts to growing this audience so that you can benefit."
About the process of this work she said, "We have chapters in different cities where we have appointed leaders who have taken charge of conducting offline meet ups and trainings for enhancing the skills of the women in the group.
Finally, if you wish to scale your business beyond your own city our platform can help you connect with women who are looking for partners as well."
Every start-up has a story behind and so does Chetana. "I have been passionate about this subject since the time I dived into the world of entrepreneurship in the year 2013.
Despite my competencies and wide experience, finding customers was tough. When pitched against men and corporate houses, the odds went against women entrepreneurs in general and especially for home run businesses operated by mothers.
There were a lot of misses than hits. I felt alone in my struggle and needed to talk to someone. This was my reason for starting 'MompreneursIndia' in 2013 - simply to connect with other mothers in business and to discuss business problems and strategies to overcome them.
Little did I know then that what started as a FREE group on Facebook would grow up to be a full scale business very soon."
"Over a course of several interactions, interviews and surveys with the women in the group I realised that what I considered to be just my struggle was infact a phenomenon that was affecting all mothers in business.
Like me many women had started a business because they too had left their careers after child birth. We were now struggling to get customers and to sustain our business.
There were others who were finding more customers than they could cope with. But there was one thing in common. We were all dealing with the complexities of
motherhood and entrepreneurship and trying to balance it all," she adds.
Stressing more about her page she said, "I realised that the solution lay within the problem itself. If we could figure out a way to support each other we could solve the issue. All we needed was a mindset change.
It is with this fundamental that I decided to create a community of like-minded business women who believed in uplifting each other and were not afraid of sharing their resources and knowledge."
About the formation of her group she said, "We formed a closed members club in 2015 to implement this strategy. After that it was easy to convince women to adopt our principle.
We simply WOWED them with the results that women had accomplished through collaborative measures. Even though the club was dissolved in 2018 to make way for our open model, this still continues to be our approach in all the efforts that we undertake here."
Mentioning about the challenges she faced she said, "Although there was no challenge in starting the community, there are plenty of challenges we are facing related to growth and sustainability of our operations since it's a FREE group.
We are constantly looking for leaders and volunteers for expanding to newer cities and sponsors for conducting our activities."
The page that got selected got selected by Facebook has much more to mention about her selection. "Facebook Community Leadership Programme is an initiative by Facebook to make communities that are making a huge impact sustainable.
Facebook is not just funding the community project but also overseeing the execution of the project to ensure its success. I feel fortunate that 'MompreneursIndia' was selected as one of the 100 projects globally by Facebook for development.
Presently I am working diligently under the guidance of the Facebook team on our project to build a powerful platform for mompreneurs in India. The project is scheduled to end in September and I am hoping that at the end of the project we will become sustainable and operational for many more years."
As the Founder of 'MompreneursIndia' she would like to send this message to all women, "I invite you to join hands with me in forming a community of strong, like-minded and supportive women who are committed to giving business to other women on the network and are not afraid of sharing their knowledge and contacts.
It is only when all of you start giving business that all of you will start receiving it. It can never be the other way round. If we let our goodness be the wind in our sails, we can sail this journey together on mompreneur-ship."