Aishwarya Rai, IIM Ranchi
I distinctly remember the day when the first Pantaloon store opened in my humble city of Kanpur. I visited the store with my parents and just the upbeat ambience and the colourfulness of the place was enough to strike a spark in my eyes. I was a really happy kid , navigating my curious way through sophisticated and stylish men’s apparel section only to find myself in the vibrant women’s section and then finally to my favourite kid’s section which was like a breeze of fresh air in terms of the wide range of products it had to offer.
That was some 12 years ago and even now when I enter into a Pantaloons store , I get the same feeling of belongingness and happiness. And the cherry on the cake is the fan girl moment when I step into a store of Forever 21 . It’s absolutely sassy and at the same time elegant and beautiful.
Being an MBA student , I am now able to realise the invaluable value that Aditya Birla Group has created for us customers.
Not only Pantaloons and Forever21 but also its other brands like Ultratech Cement , Van Heusen , American Eagle, Peter England etc. have touched the life of billions of people of India.
The Vodafone Idea Network is the showstopper in their leagues of fantastic brands. ABG’s venture in the telecom market has been greatest strategic decision taken up by them since India is one of the biggest consumers of mobile data services in the world with Vodafone Idea comfortably leaders in the market with 31 percent shares. It has brought then an extremely huge customer base which ‘stays in touch’ with the company for 365*24*7 .
Not just their product par excellence but also their CSR initiatives: Big on Smile have made a significant impact on the society. Also they are one of the most sustainable companies in the business ecosystem with their innovative products like Birla cellulose.
Looking at it from a macro perspective, it’s just so bewildering how one company can touch so many with the noble idea of making products that matter and improving lives across the world.
So in the second part of my article I’d like to take you through an unpleasant experience of my life and how I managed to hold my ground in that situation which has played a significant role in shaping my life.
Heartbreaks are highly underrated I tell you! When you have loved someone dearly for a significant portion of your life and then one fine day that person decides to break all contacts and just go away to another country without even considering the fact that we can work this out together and give our best to the long distance relationship , it clinches the heart out of your chest and throws it away into nothingness. It punches a permanent vacuum in your chest which nothing and no one would ever be able to fill. So this became my story while I was in my undergrad college. I had hardly made friends in my first year and second year of college and mostly stayed aloof so that my sadness would not overshadow other’s happiness. However, in the third year when the course is less and there is time for contemplation , I realised that I have become a totally different person that I had never imagined to become at all. I was a cheerful , inquisitive and vivacious person before he had left me and his absence had left me in such a miserable state. But enough was enough! I still had 2 years to make new friends , to get out of this oblivion which is exactly what i did. I woke up early every day before college , went for a run and came back and did some meditation. I readopted my reading habit which was lost somewhere and started interacting and making friends and going out. Initially, it was difficult because I hadn’t socialised as much in the past 2 years but this was the only way out now if I wanted to get my life back together. So leaving behind all my insecurities and burdens that have weighed on my heart for a long time, i was able to sail through the next two years of my life as a person who had great friends and two years full of infinite memories. I guess I would say that it was no one else but me who helped myself out of that situation .
I definitely believe in “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” and the sheer will and determination of doing something makes that thing possible and the universe stands by your side to help you achieve it.