RENDEZVOUS WITH RASSHMI: Age is just a number Arti Akila Saran

Rasshmi Kansupada May 06, 2019 117 Views   0 Comments
Welcome to RENDEZVOUS WITH RASSHMI . A page dedicated to ordinary people of our community…yes ordinary, but with that Xtra ordinary talent, achievement and that inspiring Xfactor!!

Enjoying retired life means different things to different people. Perhaps you’re looking forward to taking up new hobbies or traveling more – or maybe for you this is the perfect time to dive head first into a new startup venture. My guest Arti Akila Saran came to the US, 45 years ago, along with her husband with a ton of youthful obtuseness which helped them see only the possibilities of America and none of the challenges of making it in a new country where they had no family and friends. Her achievements make success stories which are worth reading and sharing.

Born and brought up in Nagpur Maharashtra, Akilaji came to America at a time when India was widely regarded as the very epitome of what the term “Third World” meant – decrepit, destitute and pitiable. Americans were inclined to the view that India was pretty jammed with poor people and cows wandering around streets, witch doctors and people sitting on hot coals and bathing in the Ganges. She joined Nursing School in Palo Alto California, and after training for 4 years she became a registered Nurse. Her nursing experience was extremely good and rewarding. She also completed her surgical technology course and assisted her husband in his practice as an eye specialist.

Akilaji always wanted to work independently. Being an entrepreneur can be an exciting and liberating endeavor. Many people have ideas for a business or product, but only a few take the leap and open a new business. She bought her friend’s shop in Trader’s village and began her business of selling jewellery, toys and general merchandise. She stayed there for a couple of years and then decided to start her own wholesale business in 1982 in Arlington Texas. She used to sell various items including leather products and knives and tools. She dared to migrate to entrepreneurship at a time when global exposure was scarce and the understanding of consumer behaviour in the US was limited. Women of color faced additional and unique obstacles in almost every area of society, including business. Women from minority backgrounds who wanted to start their own businesses were up against more hurdles. These entrepreneurs typically didn’t have a network of professional mentors to support them. They had more family responsibilities to balance and they had a much more difficult time accessing money, which is obviously key to a business’s future success.

Most of the goods were not available locally and had to be imported which involved a lot of struggle but Akilaji was determined to become a very successful business woman. She used to have customers asking for different tools and hardware. Her enterprising outlook motivated her to expand her horizon and she attended shows in Las Vegas, Los Angeles and various other cities in the US. She was receptive to new ideas, did her research and bought goods from as far as China and India. She then moved to Harry Hines in Dallas, TX in 2005. She has been doing her business successfully from past two decades.

She believes that one should embrace the failures and the mistakes as they all serve as an opportunity to learn. We should be courageous and chase our dreams through perseverance. Persistence really pays off, and everything takes time. That is why it’s so important for one to believe in and feel passionately about what one is creating or offering.

Running a business isn’t easy -- it takes hard work and discipline to reach success. Being an entrepreneur is the ultimate test of independence. You are the only person responsible for your successes or failures. Akilaji has used the power of business to make a positive change to society. She has taught us not to count ourself out, no matter what our age. Success can come to anyone at any time. She really believes that age is just a number. If one is healthy physically and mentally, your age should not be a barrier to starting anything new or pursuing your passion.

"Entrepreneurship has no age or time limits...it thrives on hope and inspiration. Those who choose to participate can only make the world a better place."

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