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Mommy Coach

Beena has gone back to work and she is lucky to have her mother and mother-in-law both help with baby-sitting her baby. Diya lives with her in laws and delivered twin boys. Her older son is three. She will eventually get back to work. Aparajita is expecting her second baby and will take a maternity break of 4 months and will get back to work. Life for these women is about to change across their work and life related domain. They will need to learn to negotiate time, help, activities and energy to strike a new balance and to gain a sense of mastery and control over their lives.

The three women have access to experienced family and friends to guide and advise them. Parenting sites and groups, articles, books, blogs guide, listen and converse. Workplace pressures, 24×7 work cultures, commuting challenges, communication and information overdrive, means there is a completely uncharted territory to navigate. There appears to be an unmet need to help women professionals ease into the work place.

‘Mommy coaches deliver women back to office’? reads the title of a news report in the TOI. The article refers to maternity coaching with an anecdote about a husband who gifts his wife nine days of coaching to help her get back to work. Coaching for individuals and for HR departments and leaders get the workplace ready to enable diversity. Work-life balance, coping with anxieties like personal appearance, efficiency levels, and behavioural changes, are some of the areas the article refers to.

Training, counseling, guiding, mentoring and coaching are terms used fairly interchangeably with a fair overlap on what they stand for. Wikipedia says, training is teaching people to do what they don’t know how to do. New mothers need training to manage health, energy, time and roles efficiently and efficiently. Training is one area that Beena will need help with. Mentoring, says Wikipedia is showing people how people who are really good at doing something do it. Mentors can be successful workplace returnee moms as role models for Beena to learn from. Wikipedia clarifies that counseling is helping people come to terms with issues they are facing. Beena may have anxieties about her appearance, self-esteem, coping mechanisms, sleep. She will need to not merely come to terms or accept, but to overcome and attain mastery over her challenges.

Wikipedia defines coaching, as ‘a teaching, training or development process via which an individual is supported while achieving a specific personal or professional result or goal’. What personal goals will the new mom like to achieve? What kind of help do they need? The age of personalization and customization means that the mom will like for her unique challenges and goals open up an opportunity for individual mom coaching.

Coaching is helping to identify the skills and capabilities that are within the person, and enabling them to use them to the best of their ability. A coach helps with listening, questioning, clarifying, to help Beena shift her perspectives and discover different solutions. Wikipedia refers to coaching as ‘meta-profession’ with applications across a whole range of concerns.

Perhaps when Beena tastes the personalized guidance from her maternity coach, will she become more open to a coach to guide her through all her future journeys – personal, professional, spiritual?

1992 - 1996
1996
1997 - 2001
1999
2001 - 2007
2013 - 2019
1992-1996

Initiation

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.

1996

Beginning

Start of Lumière Consultancy in Jamaica

1997-2001

Incubation

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.

1999

Establishing

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.

2001-2007

Invigoration

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.

2013-2019

Innovation

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.