Payal Singhal is a leading South Asian fashion designer. Her pieces are well known for reflecting attitude, style, and elegance. She mixes tradition and modern design to create one-of-a-kind pieces that are available across a wide range of price points.
When she sat down to discuss her work, business, and South Asian women’s leadership, she had a few need-to-know points to encourage persistent leadership as you build and maintain a company.
1. Utilize Collaboration
If you like a particular style, brand, or company, and you have an idea to collaborate, do not be afraid to approach that person or that business to discuss how you can work together. Getting ideas and input from other people can help you grow as a professional and expand your company. It can also help both brands create an even better product.
2. Shift Your Thinking
As a creative person who is selling a product, it can be difficult to see the other side of the coin—what are your customers thinking? However, shifting your focus from the creative and selling to the consumer and buying can help you get ahead in your business.
3. Focus on Innovation as the Norm
Making subtle mindset changes will often spur innovation. For example, Payal focuses her brand on blending traditional elements with functionality, such as adding pockets or easy fastenings. Innovation in clothing often means developing creative ways to incorporate comfort without compromising style.
4. Don’t Put All of Your Eggs in One Basket
Having many different types of products or services will help your company survive and thrive when there are market changes. Expanding current product lines can mean the difference between continuing to thrive in a global pandemic, for example, or simply trying to scramble to hold on until things are back to normal.
This general advice applies to products, people, and innovation. Having a diversified business will help a company be successful for years to come.
5. Don’t Compromise Your Brand
Even as a company makes shifts in its focus from one product or service to another, it is important to maintain the integrity of your brand. This general rule applies in every situation—from collaboration to considering completely new product lines. Even if you think a shift will be lucrative, a company should not undermine their values in favor of profits, expansion, or anything else.
6. Don’t Spread Yourself Too Thin
Although innovation and expansion are a good thing, you can go overboard. Going too wide with your product line may end up triggering some push back. Doing too much can water down your brand, leaving customers confused about your true expertise.
7. Sometimes You Have to Go with the Majority to Stay Competitive
During the current global pandemic, the entire fashion industry is “on sale.” Sales are slower now because people just are not thinking about fashion. As a result, many people are cutting down prices to ensure that sales continue—and there are certain situations where you have to do that. Staying competitive sometimes means that you have to “keep up,” and that is okay.
8. Use Partnerships to Expand Your Base
If you use your own website as the only means to sell your product, you deliberately limit yourself to selling only to the visitors to your website. While that may be fine in some circumstances, partnering with other businesses can help increase your exposure to others. No partnership is too big or too small to be valuable when you are trying to increase your exposure in the market.
9. Let Your Influencers Choose You
Letting people choose to wear your brand because they love it is one of the highest compliments. Although you can pine after a specific celebrity or type of person that you want to use your products, having someone ask you to be involved because they genuinely love the products or services you produce is a much more effective marketing strategy in the long-run.
10. Keep Up with Relevant Trends and News
Staying on top of the latest news in the industry will help you adjust to new demands or address problem areas that a company may not have known even existed. For Payal, she is keeping a close eye on the potential for a digital fashion week in India. Because of the pandemic, effectively utilizing technology is a big focus right now.
Women’s leadership in business is all about marketing yourself effectively. Using these tips will help create the image that a woman-led business wants to convey to herself and the world.
If you want more tips, information, and strategies for women leadership, persistence, or other key attributes for South Asian women’s leadership, visit ladydrinks.com. We regularly host luminaries like Payal Singhal and encourage them to share their best tips and insights on getting further as entrepreneurs.