“My goal is to transform lives and make this world a better place with every such transformation.” – Yukti Kapoor Mehandiratta, The Founder & CEO – SBY Academy, ICF accredited Leadership & Etiquette Coach, TEDx, and Keynote Speaker is a versatile, young entrepreneur who has come a long way since being the Former Gladrags Mrs. India (Runner up).
Yukti Kapoor has been awarded the National Woman Excellence Award 2018 extended by Indo European Chamber of Small and Medium Enterprises. She is a mentor for many incubators supported by IIM Lucknow, BITS Mesra, IIIT Allahabad, etc. She is also an advisor and honorary member of the Nehru Yuva Kendra Sangathan under the Min of Youth Affairs and Sports, GoI, which works towards the social development of youth.
Having worked with MNCs like Citi and Barclays in a leadership position for over a decade gives Yukti Kapoor an overall perspective of the undebatable power of practiced people skills, leading to improved performance levels.
Yukti’s other ventures include Concept Exhibitions. As a Reiki Master and a strong believer in karma, her spiritual bent urges her to bring out the same in her clients. Besides a few prominent childcare organizations, she actively engages with Angel Xpress Foundation, an NGO working for the education of lesser-privileged children.
Yukti Kapoor shares her views on success strategies and tips, and motivation with Business Upside in this interview.
Edited Excerpts from the Interview
Business Upside [BU]: How did you get your idea or concept for the business?
Yukti Kapoor Mehandiratta [YKM]: In my decade-long corporate stint, before plunging into entrepreneurship, I’ve experienced more disappointment than delight in the kind of Leaders I’ve worked with. While I could blame them for their shortcomings, yet the fact is that not many people care to learn leadership skills before accepting a leadership position in life. There is no structured training that’s provided by organizations beyond building product and process or technical know-how.
And that was the real motivation for me to create a platform that helps people to discover and enhance their ability and capability to lead with impact.
Our vision at SBY Academy is to make every enterprise we touch, a GREAT PLACE TO WORK. And great places can only be created by Great Leaders.
Business Upside [BU]: How did you come up with the name for your company?
Yukti Kapoor Mehandiratta [YKM]: I think the name came to me! I started conducting webinars even before formulating a legal entity. When I thought I was finally ready to go beyond my own self and create an enterprise, this one word stood right in front of me – ‘Silhouette’ – an outline of an object; for me, an outline within which we limit ourselves and stay immersed in that darkness. This platform will not just brighten your Silhouette but is committed to helping you break out of it forever.
SBY – Silhouette By Yukti – is just about merging my identity with that of the company since it so resonates with the very purpose of my life – to make people fall in love with themselves for who they are and can be.
Business Upside [BU]: Have you ever turned down a client?
Yukti Kapoor Mehandiratta [YKM]: Unfortunately, a few. We don’t compromise with the quality we add to our customized content, basis extensive research and impeccable delivery. And quality comes at a price. Had to turn down a few such clients who insisted on cashews at the cost of peanuts.
Business Upside [BU]: What is unique about your business?
Yukti Kapoor Mehandiratta [YKM]: The biggest challenge in the training and coaching industry has been to measure the impact. That in fact is our core strength. Coming from a finance background of being a Banker for over a decade with Citi and Barclays, I was intrigued to add a quantitative measure to the qualitative results of our training interventions.
Thus, our USP is to offer result-orientated solutions through our customized content delivered over multiple sessions, leading to sustainable progress with measurable growth.
Business Upside [BU]: How do you generate new ideas?
Yukti Kapoor Mehandiratta [YKM]: Feedback is the very spine of our work. We ask for feedback after every single session and then listen carefully to what our clients say and want.
Having built in-house capabilities for research and content development, we are able to turn around our client’s suggestions and requirements to life within no time. And that’s how we’ve been growing leaps and bounds in our offerings.
Business Upside [BU]: If you had one piece of advice to someone just starting out, what would it be??
Yukti Kapoor Mehandiratta [YKM]: First thing I would say is – CONGRATULATIONS. Taking that first step towards your goal is success in itself.
My humble advice would be to know your purpose and intent behind creating what you are set to create and then building ways to keep reminding yourself of that ‘why’. That’s the fuel to our fire, as entrepreneurs. There’ll be many challenges on your way but knowing why walking that path is important for you, will never let you look back.
Business Upside [BU]: How do you define success?
Yukti Kapoor Mehandiratta [YKM]: For me, success is in every fulfilling moment that we spend in serving people using our Leadership toolset to enhance their skill set and change their mindset. Every step forward towards your goal is a success. So, I feel successful after every pitch, every curation, and every delivery – every day.
Business Upside [BU]: Do you believe there is some sort of formula or pattern to become a successful Businessman?
Yukti Kapoor Mehandiratta [YKM]: Well, let’s see. As the spiritual person that I am, I personally believe that if you take one step deeper within yourself, you build the strength to take 10 steps forward in the world outside. That for me is the only formula for success – inward journey leads to outward growth.
Business Upside [BU]: How do you market your business, and which method has been most successful?
Yukti Kapoor Mehandiratta [YKM]: While we’ve recently started taking up social media platforms, I think nothing works better than word of mouth. Your clients are your best advocates if you serve them well.
Business Upside [BU]: What motivates you to become an Entrepreneur?
Yukti Kapoor Mehandiratta [YKM]: Entrepreneurship might look glamourous to a few but it’s a tough road ahead cause your growth is only & only your responsibility. No one to push you, no one to question – but yourself. What motivates me to keep walking is to see the smiles we spread with our leadership work, when people improve their relationships and quality of life with our small contribution. What can be more motivating than that.