January Musings

Have a wonderful 2007. New Year is a time for fresh beginnings and nothing fosters a sense of
freshness, more than a great holiday. It’s good to be back after a whole 9 days of being on leave.
The holiday was refreshing with quality family time. We enjoyed KL and Singapore. I’d like to
share a few lessons that Singapore taught me.
A significant take away is the ‘Merlion’ the ‘mascot’ of the country, which is an impossible
creature with the head of the lion and the body of the fish. It symbolizes the spirit of the country –
‘achieving the impossible against all odds’. It’s a powerful affirmation to begin the year with. I
have a small silver book mark pinned up on my soft board to remind me of my affirmation and
these 10 lessons I put down for myself:
1. Transformation: Just like Singapore transformed itself from a mish mash slum a mere
30 years ago to a state of the art country, its possible to focus on ones own evolution and
eventual transformation to a magical next level of possibilities.
2. Foresight: Singapore plans 25 years into the future year on year – to develop a clear
vision and a perspective on where one wants to be in the next one year as well as a 10
year plan on life.
3. Positivism: Singapore media communicates the positive – there is an acknowledgment
and sharing of positive news – to decide to be aggressively positive in ones thought so
positive actions can emerge.
4. Determination: Singapore’s transformation is a result of persistence and determination
to achieve its goals and mission – to imbibe this as part of ones DNA
5. Energy: There is a strong under current of energy that is a result of clarity of purpose
and determination – to supply ones with a limitless supply of energy which comes from
doing well what one enjoys doing.
6. Cleanliness: There is ruthlessness in the execution of cleanliness – to keep ones self
clean in thought and deed and eliminate unnecessary clutter that results in energy leaks
in ones system.
7. Discipline: The country is disciplined and orderly – to discipline oneself in work and in
leisure so one may achieve a balance in life.
8. Integration: Singapore is an ethnic ‘salad’ where the sauce of the values touches each
of the peoples of the country while allowing them to ‘taste’ the retained ethnic flavour –
the lesson is when one imbibes and assimilates new learnings, to do it while being
oneself, being happy and comfortable in ones own skin.
9. Celebration: Singapore celebrates individual achievement, success, material
progression and getting ahead – to celebrate every win to further propel oneself with
energy and the excitement that comes from winning.
10. Governance: Singapore is governed by a benevolent dictatorship – to be a benevolent
dictator unto oneself ensuring that we are kind yet unyielding to ourselves lest we
succumb and forget our dreams and the true selves we were meant to be.

1992 - 1996
1997 - 2001
2001 - 2007
2013 - 2019


Deepa starts working at Hindustan Unilever Ltd., and after working there for a few years decides to take a career break to take care of her son. The family plans to move to Jamaica, and she wishes to resume working. There are not a lot of opportunities post a career break for her, and this makes her realise the plight of women all across the world who are trying to resume working after taking a break. The seed for Lumière is planted. Deepa joins J.A. Young Research Ltd. to get back to her roots, and ultimately decides to start her own firm under her CA's advise.



Start of Lumière Consultancy in Jamaica



The family is aching to return to India, and post the birth of her second child, Deepa gets an offer from HUL to rejoin them. She has an itch to make it on her own, and so declines. This results in a different type of engagement between the two, and Lumière engages exclusively with HUL by expanding their scope. Deepa builds a stronghold in consumer behavior, and Lumière develops into an entity of its own. Inception of 'Consumer Centricity', which is their future key to strength, begins. With an expansion in their work, they need more resources and a group of like-minded talented professional women to join the team. Lumière gives them solace, a place to grow, rebuild their careers, and achieve goals beyond their expectations. They begin with mentoring initiatives, with an urge to inspire young individuals. People approach them through word-of-mouth, references, and to create opportunities beyong market research, Lumière becomes a Pvt. Ltd. company.



An opportunity arises to be a part of something big, to analyse the growth mindset and the creation of a best practice document for sequential recycling. Lumière makes an impact across categories and branches into Product Testing and Category Creation.



Lumière touches ₹ 1 crore. Their brochure is presented at MRSI. The company turns 10, and Milind joins the team as an observer. This becomes the phase of Lumière's upheavel: from scaling up, digitization and automation of processes, to plugging in leakages across departments and accounts. Their billings reach ₹ 3 crores.



Rashmi Bansal dedicates a chapter of her book 'Follow Every Rainbow' to Deepa and Lumière. The company enters adulthood, and they facilitate change management for Lumière. The introduction of the Gallup Strengths to the portfolio is a game changer. A revamp of the technological infrastructure ensues, giving way to an articulation of Lumière 3.0.