When Natasha Mudhar, Global Chief Executive of Sterling Global, a communication consultancy, started out, there weren’t many South Asians in the field—even though she was in a multi-cultural city like London. But, Natasha beat all odds, took Sterling Global to greater heights, and co-founded The World We Want, a global social impact enterprise set up to accelerate the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Here’s how she does it all.
On looking up to her mother as a role model:
My mother Teji has been my biggest inspiration and she has been an integral part of both my professional and personal life. She established Sterling Global in 1995 as a single parent with a young child. I’m inspired by the fact she started a company, and made a huge success of it, despite the fact it was in a field where nobody in the community really understood the value. The Indian community expected her to venture into a more ‘professional’ role such as law, medicine or finance – but she didn’t let that, nor anything, hold her back from realising her dream. So, when she passed the baton on to me, I certainly had some expectations to fulfil.
On her campaign #WhatIReallyReallyWant:
I was appointed India Director for the United Nations’ Global Goals campaign by Project Everyone, an organisation co-founded by filmmaker and activist Richard Curtis, with the mandate being to raise awareness of the Goals to 1.3 billion people in India. I launched the #WhatIReallyReallyWant’s global campaign for Project Everyone. It’s a disruptive girl power film which broke the internet in a matter of hours and would go on to receive over 150 million global views. The campaign revolved around a remake of the Spice Girls track Wannabe to mark twenty years of Girl Power and the aim was to reflect the voices of girls and women all over the world to send a message to global leaders regarding what we ‘really really want’ to help improve lives and achieve worldwide equality.
View this post on Instagram
On organising her work hours:
I’m very conscious of setting goals and intentions, which help me to move inches closer to achieve our mission. I usually set this out the night before so I can wake up knowing what needs to be done. I’ve recently started creating ABC lists – A being things which need to be done without fail on that day, B being things that can wait until tomorrow and C being things that can even wait until next week. It’s good to keep these things in mind as the ABC list rotates.
On the one book that left a lasting impact on her:
The Execution Factor: The One Skill That Drives Success by Kim Perell. Her story from being a start-up entrepreneur to an internationally renowned CEO and prominent angel investor is inspiring for all of us and makes us realise that it is possible to achieve your dreams without the need of money, a degree or a high IQ.
On managing stress:
I always try to take a step back from the haze created by being constantly in the thick of the issue – to look at things from a distance. Start again if you like. Only then can you begin to rationalise things and be pragmatic. Decisions are typically far rasher when made under stress and whilst certain deadlines simply cannot wait – I often analyse whether the stress I am under is completely necessary, or just something I am putting myself under.
On relaxing at the end of the day:
I combine thinking at 100mph speed using intense endorphins with things like power training on my treadmill on the incline setting! Now, this is where I execute my multi-tasking skills to a whole new level – I binge watch YouTube, whilst trying to climb a mountain in the process.
On the one habit she would like to change:
Trying to save the world in one day! I always say that if the day was 48 hours long, you still wouldn’t get everything you need to get done, done.
On the advice she will give to her younger self:
Believe you can do anything and never be afraid of making a mistake as they can sometimes be some of the most valuable lessons an entrepreneur can learn. Mistakes are made by the risk-takers and as far as I’m aware, nobody ever made it to the top by playing it safe. Mistakes allow you to open your mind, reaching new portals you never knew were possible or even existed. And above all, find a job you love as you will soon realize that your vocation can become your vacation.