Priya Jain: Hand-crafted products from the heart : Passion To Paycheck
In her previous avatar, she was a busy media professional living in the fast lane. Now, Priya Jain is in the business of making hand-crafted soaps and chocolates, even as she chases personal growth and goes about creating an eco-system that can better lives, especially those of women.
The big leap
Priya Jain had what most people would consider an enviable career. She was in television, reporting, producing and anchoring shows. Was it hard to walk away from all that? “Yes, undoubtedly,” she says. “I really loved my job and that made quitting and changing tracks especially difficult.” But change she did, because, she says, “I was looking for personal growth and also to do something that would makes lives better.”
Priya had taken hobby lessons in soap-making, but didn’t know at that time that she would turn it into a business. “It was the birth of my niece that sparked the idea,” she says. “I felt her gentle skin needed a soap that wouldn’t harm it in any way.” And thus Mishikrafts – named after little Mishika – was born. Soap made from all-natural ingredients became her signature and soon there were many takers. Priya had found the reassurance she needed that her career switch was wise and the decision to follow her passion would be rewarded.
Just as her niece had inspired the soap line, it was her brother’s fondness for chocolate that pushed Priya in the direction of hand-made chocolates. It’s now the biggest seller among her products and Mishikrafts keeps innovating and introducing new flavours and presentations through the year – for festivals, Valentine’s Day and other occasions that call for sweet gifts. “We will try and deliver on any demand from customers,” says Priya. “We’re ever ready to step out of our zone and create custom-made chocolates.”
The business woman
When Priya Jain moved from the world of media to business, she would set some firm rules. “Of course, it was a business and had to be run as such, but everything we did, we did with a personal touch and from the heart. That is the very essence of Mishikrafts,” she says. As far as possible, she and her partner, who happens to be her sister-in-law, make the first delivery in person. “We like to meet our customers and make a connection,” she says. As corporates and wedding planners look for meaningful gifts, she’s kept busy with bulk orders, many of which require a good deal of customizing.
Priya was also clear that her pricing would be accessible and transparent. “I didn’t want to outprice our products simply because of the ‘hand-crafted’ tag,” she says.
Alongside Mishikraft, Priya also manages a project that offers micro-funding to women entrepreneurs and it’s something she wishes to do quietly, without attracting too much attention. “We are not even talking lakhs,” she says. “Often it’s a few thousands which a home cook needs to buy baking supplies or some help with marketing for a maker of handmade jewellery.” If we are convinced that someone is determined to create something good, we’ll help them achieve that dream,” says this young woman who believes that there’s a lot of goodness that goes around. She is certainly one of those people who ensures that’s the case.
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