As a little girl from small town – Karnal, I have fond memories of my childhood days. I used to spend quite a bit of time dreaming about doing something special and be known for making a positive difference in my own way.
Like most children, my growing up years were greatly influenced by the family values instilled by my parents. They singularly committed themselves to being good role models for us. As kids we were told “Become world class in whatever you do”. My father- Mr Narinder Chaudhary, being an advocate is a great orator and my mother-Ms. Parveen Chaudhary, is a strong and spirited lady, possessing a charming dressing style and interpersonal skills. Their ability to charm others had a great impact on me. I wanted to be as inspiring as them.
Dressing up, being well groomed, respecting others, reading books, improving my interpersonal skills – were the behaviours and skills I learned by observing my parents. I acquired a deep appreciation for these qualities.
Today as an Image consultant and Soft skills coach, when I look back, it feels like life has come full circle as the work I do today makes very good use of the qualities I acquired at a very early age.
At school, I was a pretty good student and immediately after finishing my studies, I got a job at a leading insurance company. After that, I joined a leading financial. When I look back at this initial stint, I feel my work was result oriented where rewards were given for the numbers you make, no matter how. This disregard for the ‘how part’ made me uncomfortable. I could see that behind the apparent lack of great numbers; lay some very good talent that just did not have the soft skills needed to present themselves. After this small corporate stint, at the age of 20, I left everything and got married. We moved to Gurgaon and there I finished my post graduation in HR. Oblivious of my childhood dreams to make a special difference, I selflessly committed to taking care of my daughter and took a job sabbatical for a few years. My husband supported me during this period by providing constant encouragement to keep up with knowing what’s happening around in the world.
Then after a gap of few years, I started my work again with Amity School and then also got an opportunity to work with Akanksha- NGO. I could see that rules of the game had not changed much from the corporate job I had many years back. I realised that there was a dire need to sharpen and upgrade people’s soft skills so that people could leverage these to achieve results.
This gravitated me towards the art and science of Image consulting and professional soft skills. I did my international certification in Image consulting and my company ThePerfectYou was born in 2013. Like any other start-up, there were a few hiccups initially. Many people were sceptical of how a young girl like me could give those tips about soft skills; they believed training skills came through experience and tenure.
Many homemakers did not recognize the need for grooming. They would often say to me –“We don’t have time for presenting our self” or “how does grooming make a difference?” I knew that deep down a lack of good grooming and soft skills was affecting their self esteem and Body Image…but they just could not acknowledge that to act.
It used to take me a small conversation to underline the importance of Image management. With some real life examples I could make a compelling case around the importance of managing one’s image. Then gradually through word of mouth I started getting training sessions and the feedback of the session was very encouraging…
And as they say rest is history.
As part of this journey, one of the worrying parts was how some people around me, doubted my parenting skills. I could over hear ladies saying “how could she leave her daughter at the day care centre?” Yes that did bother me initially but my family has been very supportive and kept encouraging me and I knew I was not doing anything wrong. We ensured our daughter was in safe hands and the time that we devoted with her was special. Time passes in jiffy. Today my daughter (Ishita Katyal) is 9 years old. She has made us proud by being the youngest author in India and the youngest organizer of a TEDx event in the South-Asia region. It makes me believe that I did some things right for sure along the way.
I have a supportive husband Vikas who stands by me through thick and thin. A great life lesson that I learned was that not everyone loves what you do and wouldn’t share the same excitement. You have to learn how to filter all the noise out and only to listen to what matters to you.
Today, I have a very fulfilling career. I train at one of the most reputed corporate, colleges ,schools and organisations and also conduct one on one session with my clients. I am passionate about making people feel good about themselves and help them achieve success.
I strongly feel that if you believe in what you do and if you do it with utmost sincerity then you will achieve your goal for sure.
My mantra .. Think Big, Dream Big !
My favourite quote is… “Passion is energy- it comes from focusing on what you love.”- Oprah
Nancy Katyal is the Founder of ThePerfectyou (www.theperfectyou.in). She is a renowned Image consultant and Soft skills coach. She facilitates session on various topics like Image management, Communication skills, Styling, Body language, Etiquette, Dining Etiquette, Storytelling etc. She is a expert faculty at some of the reputed organisations like Femina Believe, National insurance academy to name a few.