Spotlight on Women in Tech | TelecomDrive.com
From starting her career as a response executive with Times of India, to managing her own venture, MediaValueWorks – Rachana Chowdhary has come a long way. Leading with creativity, determined will and passion towards hard work, today, she is able to create a unique place for herself within the media sphere.
As part of our special focus on ‘Women in Tech’ initiative – Rachana Chowdhary, Founder & Director, MediaValueWorks interacts with Zia Askari from TelecomDrive.com about her professional and personal journey.
How would you describe yourself?
Over the years, I have spent considerable time reflecting upon myself. I am impulsive, think-on-the feet and an action person. Essentially, I am an idea-person and have an inherent ability to instantly come up with the most feasible ideas for people and situations. I normally go with what comes to my thought first, am driven by my intuitions more than extended analyses.
I am a more of a mentor for many of my young clients and staff and help handhold them to grow in their own space. I am self-made and a constant learner. I am driven by building long-lasting associations both at work and home.
What are your personal priorities?
Respective to my life cycle stages, my priorities auto-transcended to what was right for me, my family and for my little ecosystem. Ambitious, committed and hard-working, I take no short-cuts to achieving my goals. Financial independence, both at work and at home has helped me function and operate the way I do.
I spend major part of my day working. I plan my meetings couple of days every week, and rest of the days I operate from home. I enjoy meeting people in person. Though, we are now able to have interesting outcomes via GMeets and Zoom Meets as well. I actively look out to get an opportunity to listen to industry leaders/legends. I often register and attend many summits, workshops and conferences.
Outside work, I get very disturbed seeing the inconsiderateness of people towards any type of wastage and often try to communicate and explain to them suitably whenever possible. In my own little capacity, I often impart digital training to senior citizens when I come across them, and help them become comfortable using smart phones, apps and carry out day-to-day tasks on phone.
Please share with us some of your personal milestones and their contributions towards developing your personality?
I grew up in the city of Mumbai, with active engagement in social, art, cultural, sports and extra-curricular activities. I almost maintained a self-learning goal of learning one new thing each day during major part of my school and college life.
As a teenager, I have great memories of influencing people around me. I was active in organizing various school functions and led teams. During my college years, I spent my time doing research projects, and was active in participating in small scale industries development programs for women.
All of these activities helped me improvise upon my inter-personal skills and instilled in me confidence to face the world. Each event of my life has helped me tackle some or the other challenges in the future, and has helped me in many ways.
I had qualified and was offered a job as Response Executive, at The Times of India, at a very young age. I progressed and learnt a lot about the media industry. These many small and big moments in life, make you much stronger and gives the ability to take on much more than what’s on the table.
How do you see yourself as a person? What are your three qualities that have helped you grow as a person and a professional?
I am a fine combination of an outside-in and an inside-out approach person.
- Think creatively
- People interaction
- Passionate about work
Above qualities have been my guiding force to perform and grow each day. Particularly, in my scope of work, I feel my personal attributes play a vital role in my professional life.
Learning and observation over the last two decades, probably have sharpened the edge of my saw. I am now taking on much larger mandates with enterprises globally, organizations are looking for the right expertise on content strategy and creative management.
Please share with us some of your hobbies and interests?
I like to carry out a diverse portfolio of things. two-fold, real and virtual hobbies and interests.
I grew up as a classical dancer, painter, played sports, social worker, and an active participant of the school-level military base camps. As a young adult, I was a part of the Rotary International – Dist 3140, the youth wing called the Rotaract Club. Such association activities helped shape my thoughts and actions. We conceptualized and organized several community projects and fund-raisers for the underprivilege groups.
In my residential vicinity, as a social impact worker, I was nominated to be the building representative managing my single tower. This offered me various occasions to meet with the neighbours, and understand their concerns. Transformation projects including the building renovation, maintenance, reconstruction, waste management, water, gas pipeline, electricity, telephone etc. was deployed during the phase.
Social media has rolled up the different interests and hobbies into tabs, selected while signing up on apps. The virtual life has opened up avenues for us to enjoy the abundance on choices. Selection on the most feasible hobbies, events, theatres, shows on apps help plan the monthly and quarterly programs on weekends to enjoy.
Please tell us something about your family? How has been their support in terms of helping you grow professionally?
I come from a family of self-made people. I am the daughter of a scientist (physicist) at the respected central govt. institution – Bhabha Atomic Research Centre in Mumbai. My mother played a very important role in inculcating virtues of leading a balanced life. With my elder sister and my younger brother, I enjoyed growing up, while shaping up our personalities.
Marriages are made in heaven.
I was lucky to have met with my husband, Vikrant Chowdhary over a conversation and had immediately decided him to be my go-to person. We had a very short courtship and I got engaged at a very young age at 22 years. Few months later, just before our wedding, I had met with a near-fatal train accident with severe injuries and had run into serious life-threatening situation. It was only the decision of my late Father-in-law and my late Mother-in-law who had decided not to change any wedding plans, as they stated recoveries would happen in due course of time and they would take care of me during this phase.
With each of such experiences in my life, more at the personal front has impacted me in developing a much stronger and forward-looking outlook for me both at home and work.
Self-discipline, rigour, honesty and commitment is what we as a family hold and pursue from generations. I hope my two sons 19 years and 14 years are able to imbibe these virtues in them too.
Rachana Chowdhary | Smaller wins are building blocks of success
How do you define success? What is your mantra to succeed?
I wear many different hats at work and need to step into different shoes each day. According to me, the yardstick to measure success is not constant. Success truly is a personal attribution.
Smaller wins and recognitions are the building blocks of success.
For founders, ‘vision to plan’ and ‘vision to execute’ in the right proportion leads to real success.
In the knowledge economy, success is not garnered by organization’s size, but by the tenacity to operate and deliver.
How has been your professional journey so far? Please tell us about your various job profiles?
Over the last two decades, the traditional media – print, broadcast, radio etc. have surpassed a galaxy of revolutions. The guidelines on content creation, content publishing and content promotions have had disruptive changes.
I started MediaValueWorks a decade ago, with the tagline – Communicate Globally with two clear goals:
- Create a value proposition for foreign companies to be promoted in India.
- Help Indian companies to get promoted effectively in foreign locations.
Taking a boot-strapped company global has been truly reassuring for me. Setting up and growing MediaValueWorks (MVW Group) as a cloud enabled new-age content marketing and communications consulting arm has been a key milestone. MediaValueWorks (MVW), is facilitating clients with:
- Smarter global outreach
- Influence stakeholders across ecosystems
- Communicate and engage with customers in new markets.
To date, MVW Group has communicated and engaged with over 0.5 million international influencers across 68 countries. Our strategies on organic content placements on high-traffic media outlets has offered a comprehensive reach of over 2 billion page views and added over 400K followers to the various clients served across categories, India and International.
The organization helps clients communicate in over 25 foreign languages and pitches high-grade content-packets to targeted international media.
MediaValueWorks has presence and associates across India. Our international company – MediaTechResource operates in the US and serves a range of companies from different industries, including Cloud, Enterprise Technology, Telecom, Healthcare, BFSI, Mobile Apps, Edtech, Entertainment, Sports, Medical Diagnostics and more.
When you look back in your career – what according to you can be termed as big turning points. How have these turning points helped you professionally?
My jumping into entrepreneurship from being an employee at a previous organization has been a truly transformational experience. Incepting a boot-strapped company and growing it each day is a commitment an entrepreneur makes to risk anticipated higher rewards in future.
The journey of entrepreneurship teaches maximum lessons. The knowledge or passion of the founder maybe is the pole star, but to navigate through people, systems, competition, compliances, cashflows, service levels, network, expansion, branding and marketing, client wins, and are many other factors needs complete time and attention of an entrepreneur.
This experience helps you strengthen your mental framework and shapes you into a far more pragmatic professional with an ability to take on much larger challenges.
Turning point for the industry and changes over the last decade and particularly in the post-pandemic era, has reset most of the previously considered best practices. It’s time to revisit business models to align with the changing ecosystems to be able to design future-ready strategies.
How do you see yourself five years from now? What are some of your big goals that you want to achieve?
I am a transformational content strategist.
Globally, algorithmic content deliveries, based on ‘if then’, negatively impact society. Lack of quality content moderation is leading the world towards a societal fallout.
Millions and billions read, see, watch, consume and are compelled to embrace the same content irrespective of contexts; location, age, background, understanding, comprehension, profession, intellect, life stage and many more factors. We are almost manifesting an age-less, aspiration-deficient, skill-compromised, emotion-aborted, generation-less society.
Broadly, with technologies advancing, the content language gets caution notifications when it’s dangerous, deceptive, harassing, hateful, manipulative, medical, terrorist, sexually explicit, violent & gore, vulgar language & profanity. While such parameters may hold for one person’s Point of View (PoV), they may be irrelevant for millions of others.
What may be dangerous for some, safe for others, deceptive for few, maybe a ray of hope for others? The lines between the broadcaster and the public are blurred as social media permits each one to be a publisher. Hence, today we are scrolling over tons of irrelevant content being served, costing us time, resources and anguish.
I am working on a mission to bring solidarity to the online publishing industry and establish a meaningful distinction between organic and inorganic content. ‘Ethics in publishing content’ – is an agenda I am leading at a micro level right now; I aim to take this forward to the most significant content creators and publishers who can come up with the best mechanics to determine a society-aligned publishing policy.
Over the last decade, I have edited and published over 5000+ generic news stories on our online platforms. I have communicated and engaged with over 0.5 million Journalists across 68 countries and published over a million PR Stories in over 25 different languages. Our comprehensive reach has generated over 2 billion page views on news stories and added over 400K followers to the various clients served across multiple industries.
To enhance customer and stakeholders’ organic and meaningful engagements, I have also started a small business in the US, which I aim to grow in a big way over the next decade.