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Women Entrepreneurs From Bangalore Talk About Women And The Corporate World

Posted on :
22 September 2016
Posted on :
22 September 2016

The internet bubble introduced two things to the world- The concept of online businesses and startups. During this period of shift from conventional industries to online businesses, the world saw more and more women becoming active in the industry. Whether it was tech, business or media, the number of women keeps increasing. 

When India joined the western world in the startup movement, we saw women entrepreneurs from all corners of our country starting their own ventures and making their dreams come true. The entrepreneurs went against the tide and did something that proved to us old-fashion Indians that women can achieve anything a man can and in some cases do even more. 

We asked these three established women from Bangalore about chauvinism in the startup era and the problems women entrepreneurs face. Their answers might surprise you.



1. Malini Gowrishankar



Ex-techie, Voiceover/dubbing artist, Founder / CEO, F5 Escapes, an alternate travel company with a vision to redefine the way women travel India. during my 3 years stint as a volunteer with Headstart Network Foundation, I also conceptualised and lead the Women Entrepreneurs initiative nationally. The Delhi rape and the decline in tourism numbers pushed me to do something that would encourage women to travel more in India and reclaim our spaces the country. Thus was born F5 Escapes, back in 2013. It has been 3 years now and has been a very difficult yet fulfilling journey.

Does chauvinism exist in this era of startups?

Nowadays, there are a lot more women entrepreneurs who are coming out and passionately building their dreams. However, things are still not as rosy as it may seem, for every woman who pursues her dream, there exist several other women who struggle to even vocalize what they want to do - this manifests as lack of family support, judgement or sheer disbelief that a woman can do it for herself. While the world is changing, there needs to be more support systems in place to encourage more women to follow their dreams.


What problems do women entrepreneurs face according to you?

In my work with Headstart Network as the National Lead for Women Entrepreneurs Initiative, I have observed the following:
a. Families are okay as long as the woman is trying to build a hobby business but if she is serious, then there is quite a bit of friction. Full support from spouse and sharing of household responsibilities is still a distant dream for most women.

b. Lack of direction and mentoring - where to go, what to do.

c. Lower levels of self belief - A lot more women need to think that they are a part of building the future and have to build more confidence in their system. d. Not reaching out and asking for help - Networking becomes secondary when a woman manages business, household and several other responsibilities without much support. she misses out on valuable networking opportunities that could help her business in more ways than one.

Follow her startup here





2. Tejaswini Gopalaswamy


A music, travel and art aficionado. Taking a slower pace, interacting with locals and understanding their way of life, histories and cultures intrigued me to taking a cycle on my travels. It allowed me to pause and take a pace that I can control vs zipping past on a motor vehicle. Bicycle travels allows me soak in the sights and sounds through the space I travel to. Working in a start up means, you double/triple/multiple up as Tour leader, content writer, accountant, cycle mechanic and what ever else the situation demands.

Introducing travellers to an “Unventured” way of travel which is taking the road less travelled, listening to stories of the region through the voices of the locals, experiencing their way of life and facilitating a complete real world experience gets me up and going to work each day.

Does chauvinism exist in this era of startups?

Prejudice/Chauvinism is rather a human nature and it exists both ways. Assuming a person is incapable of seeing through a certain job, will remain until proven otherwise. What we should look at and nip in the bud is discouragement and a negative outlook. Both sexes must play to their strengths keeping in mind the well being of the company. Start up or not!.

What problems do women entrepreneurs face according to you?

A lack of a good network.
Pre conditioning plays a major role, like “Women have to care for the family, support the man in his business or Start up” Vs “Start your own Enterprise”.
Any entrepreneurship demands complete attention and dedication, a lot of times to find that fine balance between family and work can be a challenge.

Follow her startup here






3. Charmaine Kenita


Charmaine Kenita is a doctor by profession, but considers writing as the profession she was born for. She writes, blogs, is an artist and founder at Out ‘O’ Box Content, a boutique content and social media firm which she started in 2012. As a voracious reader, writing was a natural extension begun as a way to jot down experiences in food, art and travel. With people showing interest in her written word, and the encouragement to pursue it professionally, she began the company with a small team of 2 writers. Today, the company can proudly proclaim their association with some notable brands in the Food, Décor, Education and Software industry having worked with Little Elly Playschools, Groupon, Simplilearn, Tata Global Beverages, Capricoast and more for various content projects.


Content has become a significant game changer in the online space in the last decade and with Out ‘O’ Box content, she hopes to be at the top of the game. The fact that the written word is often the only way to connect, engage and reach out to people fascinates her and she considers it a powerful tool to build relationships across mediums. Charmaine will soon be launching a parenting site, Kidoovation that offers different parenting perspectives.


Does chauvinism exist in this era of startups?

To be honest I haven’t come across chauvinism from industry peers. Once they see my work and understand that I engage with them as a business partner approaching a similar set of tasks professionally, they are open with knowledge exchange and help. However there are a few who make it a point to emphasize on gender and my parenting status to prove a point. I have learned to listen and only take what feedback helps me.


What problems do women entrepreneurs face according to you?

Women entrepreneurs mainly face the problem of lack of information. We do get plenty of support from our kind but in general are accepted only when our work speaks for ourselves.


Follow her startup here



Find some interesting events about entrepreneurship in Bangalore here