Thank you to the 1,000 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 questions!
I hope reading
7 Questions with Bhairavi Buch Sonowal
helps you in your leadership.
7 Questions with Bhairavi Buch Sonowal
Name: Bhairavi Buch Sonowal
Current title: Founder Director and Managing Partner
Current organisation: HED Healthcare Pvt Ltd
My experience of more than 18 years has been a very exciting journey, where I have created some amazing legacies. I have been lucky to work across diverse portfolios, which gives me an immense understanding of the social, healthcare, education, training, skill creation, skill enhancement, CSR and diversity and inclusion sectors. Across all these sectors, I have been able to create an approach that impacts people.
My latest portfolio is that of an entrepreneur where I have created models on addressing the unmet need of healthcare – creation of a skilled workforce in healthcare. I created 2 centers across Eastern India by developing partnerships with GE Healthcare and the Health Sector Skill Council (HSSC). I also developed a model for enhancing the reach of patients across healthcare settings irrespective of their locations. Partnerships developed with many hospitals like Apollo group, Nemcare and Medica group stand testimony to the efforts in creating long lasting partnerships. Recently, I have developed a pan UNICEF programs to create a roadmap for diversity and inclusion strategy for UNICEF India. My programs on skill enhancement, skill creation and impact evaluation have been recognized across many NGOs and corporates. As the Managing partner of HED Healthcare Private Limited and a CSR Partner to BD Foundation, I have been able to create long lasting and impactful developmental programs. Previously I have led and worked on development projects like nutrition, HIV-AIDS, rehabilitation, MCH and rural development. I enjoy coaching and mentoring, and over my career helped many achieve their life's goals.
Strategic skills: Visionary and adaptive leadership, Strategic thinking, Strategic scanning, Masterful execution.
Government Relations Consulting, Public Policy, Investment Advisory, Public Affairs, Stakeholder Audits, Political Assessment, Risk and Reputation Management, Branding and Strategy implementation
1. What have you found most challenging as a CEO or executive of a large enterprise?
After a long stint with a development organisation I decided to start on my own. The journey as a women entrepreneur has been very interesting for me. The most challenging art in this journey is acceptance of my enterprise by various other stakeholders being a woman. Building networks, pitching for funding are the few challenges faced by me.
2. How did you become a CEO or executive of a large enterprise? Can you please briefly tell the story?
Ever Since my work days I have been passionate to do meaningful work and bring impact to the lives of people. With this idea started up the social enterprise bringing about meaningful and impactful programs to people of society.
Having grown up in a country like India where diversity is embraced since childhood I came across some rich experiences of learning through various people in my life. Growing up as a girl child and then a woman trying to set up something on its own and wanting to bring about a change in society helped me shape up my entire character as well as personality. I feel very close to developing women as a whole and work towards the empowerment of women in various fields with the skills gained by me. Thus I feel if women get together and take the onus of their development in their own hands they can do wonders.
3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?
Well being a mom of teenage daughters my days are well filled up by multitasking at various tasks. Though the days before pandemic were like a race in process, the pandemic has helped get my days now with the second year of it more organised. Initially in the year 2020 when the pandemic struck it was difficult to get all the members of the house into routine due to working from home and taking school from home. But slowly and gradually I developed a routine for myself and thereby encouraged my Kids also to follow the same. It was tough to accept the "new normal". Alongwith the regular needs of the household it was very important to take care of the mental well being of my family. We made it a point to include some physical exercise or activity daily into our routine. Also, as a family I tried to help kids hone and upgrade their hobbies and improve upon them. Thereby spending some quality family time. We also engaged ourselves into a huge fundraising event for the slum dwellers of India to provide them safety and hygiene kits. This helped us to bond together and inculcate the values of giving it back to society as well as the importance of social contribution along with the value of paying it back.
4. What's the most recent significant leadership lesson you've learned?
Being grateful. In recent times I also realised the importance being a authentic leader and building trust and confidence of the team members can take the organisation long way
5. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?
I just finished reading Barack Obamas' "Promised Land''.The book helps ordinary people see extraordinary dreams and work towards them to fulfil them. Also how grit, determination, perseverance can take a person longways.
6. How do you build leadership capacity in a large enterprise?
A large enterprise can be built on pillars of mutual trust, authenticity, embracing change. Thus leading by example and walking the talk can make people join you in your goal and purpose.
7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a CEO or executive of a large enterprise so far?
Recently I was spoken to. panelists in a UK Virtual Trade mission that was held to improve trade ties between UK and. India. I was invited as a panel member in "Women in Diversity & Business" It was a great learning and sharing platform with diverse women entrepreneurs also a part of it and sharing their journey.