My Working Day – Falu Shah – Founder of Howdah Snacks

As the leader of a company, you are there to set an example, to lead and inspire a team of individuals to achieve a series of business goals. But how do these business leaders go about their daily routine? Business Leader spoke to Falu Shah, Founder of Howdah Snacks, about her working day.

What time do you wake up?

I like an early morning start, normally 5 am. I like to begin with some meditation and spiritual reading. The quiet time helps me reflect as well as plan for my day ahead.

What do you have for breakfast?

I love to kick off my morning with a strong cup of Indian ginger chai and Indian crispbread called Khakhra. Ginger has also been shown to help improve cognitive function, and a cup of ginger tea can help to increase concentration and focus, and increase energy.

What is your mantra for your working day?

My mantra is “Action with Purpose”, every action/decision should lead to give back one more school meal.

As a business leader, is it hard to separate your business and personal life?

As a start-up/entrepreneur, it can be quite difficult to separate business from personal life – especially when you love what you do.

What advice would you give to aspiring female entrepreneurs?

My advice to females and especially those from an ethnic background is listen to, and follow, your instincts. Challenge the status quo.

What motivates you?

Giving back school meals with every bag sold is my biggest motivation. I am fortunate to have an opportunity where my actions can make a difference.

How do you persevere through challenging times?

I believe in action without expectation – whilst we don’t have any influence on the outcome or results of any action, we have 100% power over action itself. So through challenging times, I believe in continuing to take action without worrying about the result.

What are the biggest challenges you’ve faced as a female entrepreneur?

I have mostly faced my internal challenges running my own business and trying to be a good mother, wife, daughter and daughter-in-law. Growing up in a conservative Indian family, the expectations were for me to get educated but then get married and raise a family. Running my own business meant working long hours and traveling long distances.

What is the best piece of advice you have received?

My father-in-law, who hugely helped me break out of my preconceived notion of my role as an ideal daughter-in-law, offered me the best piece of advice, which was seek out advice, listen to them but do only what your heart/instincts tell you.

Are you hopeful about the future of female entrepreneurship in the UK? Why?

Absolutely. Women are born with very strong business sense. They are inherently innovative and fantastic leaders and managers. International Women’s Day helps recognise these talents and pave the way for women from different backgrounds and cultures.