By Rachita Sharma
My name is Rachita and I am 24 years old. My passion in life is to create a community that supports and uplifts young women. Growing up in a small city, I never felt comfortable with the constant ‘caste’ criticism or stereotypes associated. The casteism that my fellow students were subjected to was deeply unsettling for me. How Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas and the Shudras were superior or inferior to one another was a dialogue I could never relate to. I see beauty in what makes each individual unique.
When I was 13, I became determined to make a personal change that would express the fact that I did not agree with the discrimination or looking down on one another based on the status quo. As a result, when we were asked to complete registration for the 9th grade, I removed my last name ‘Sharma’ and just registered myself as ‘Rachita’. While a small protest at the time, I found strength and purpose in my decision. My parents were not so thrilled that I had outsmarted the system with a clever way to officially remove my last name.
I still remember people in my circle mentioning how I have a last name that holds tremendous amounts of gravity and they seemed utterly puzzled as why I would forgo this great “honour”?
Today, I take the extra step to determine airline specific procedures for booking flights under the right name, including ‘Rachita Rachita’, Rachita LNU (Last name Unavailable) and FNU (First Name Unavailable) Rachita. At 13, I was just determined not be given preferential treatment on the grounds of a last name that was just given to me. Earlier this year at ‘Empowering A Billion Women Conference 2020’ in Austin, Texas, I shared this story.
I have always been passionate about serving as a voice for those who don’t have one. My life’s mission is to be an agent of change by providing young women more opportunities and a better path for achieving their full potential. Girl Power Talk is our vision in action:
- Build an organization with a moral fabric for doing good in the world.
- Catalyze change through the growth and development of each young adult that joins our community.
- Provide women a platform to celebrate their successes and amplify their voice.
- Offer education to inspire innovation and eradicate stereotypes.
- Grow an innovate technology company into a case study for digital transformation.
I started my career at the age of 20 in collaboration to build Blue Ocean Global. Technology pervades all spheres of our lives and we are increasingly dependent upon it. Our goal was to help clients make optimal technology decision. We empower people with the knowledge to thrive in the face of the digital revolution. Our commitment to education includes thought leadership and speaking engagements at conferences. I formed Girl Power Talk to align with Blue Ocean Global Technology’s commitment to gender diversity across global communities.
Girl Power Talk strives to inspire girls with persistence, empathy, and confidence. We empower young women (and men) with merit-based opportunities to grow and achieve their full potential. We develop girls in India to become global leaders. We are relentlessly committed to education, gender equality, and integrating the strengths of specially abled communities. We celebrate the diverse and talents of each team member.
Through our nurturing culture of learning and mentorship, we instil young people with exceptional soft-skills, technical knowledge, and purpose in life. We provide a platform to share the voices and stories of girls and women across India. #GirlPowerTalk
“One girl empowers another. Let’s change lives together: one girl, one woman and one human being at a time.”
As a key leader & CEO of a start-up in Girl Power Talk, I am responsible or involved in almost everything. While at times the demands of operating and building a company can be a challenge, I have learned to put my energy where it matters the most. For me that is creating a strong vision and having true alignment amongst our growing team. To do that, you have to genuinely care about someone and invest the time to develop a real friendship. Naturally, this special bond is built on a foundation of mutual trust. We don’t just hire people that fit a particular job role, but rather identify through interviews the ones that actually share in our company values. We then empower each leader to do their best work and contribute in ways that transcend the barriers set by their traditional course of study. We recognize the importance of gender equality and seek to attract those with extraordinary potential.
The sense of integrating how we give back to our society at large within the fabric of Girl Power Talk is what really excites me. As such, how I spend my time must directly or indirectly result in contributions that improve the lives of those with less opportunity than I have been afforded.
I always envisioned being part of an organization that can help women gain confidence and knowledge, while also creating one defined by meaningful employment. This is our fuel for a progressive but equally altruistic company.
We conduct various workshops in remote villages for primary and secondary school students. Our goal is to motivate young girls to pursue and follow their dreams for a better life. Girl Power Talk embraces this mindset. Guidance received at a young age will underpin and define how girls pursue their ambitions.
I strongly believe each one us possesses great strength. I believe in equality, but I also believe in uniqueness. I feel it is essential to keep appreciating ourselves for the smaller victories we achieve each day.
We, as women, are often told to be modest, even with our success. For every job well done, reward yourself, and don’t downplay the progress.
As a woman who is committed to paying forward opportunities, I have an abundance mentality in sharing all that I have learned for others to benefit from my mistakes. I am dedicated to changing the trajectory and opportunity set for the brightest young minds in India for decades to come. I stand by what is right and am not afraid of questioning the wrong decisions or established practices of society. I have learned that through trial and error, one can learn and move forward. I dream of building a better world, one where purpose and profit are harmonized.
My aim is to curate an ecosystem where ideas, appreciation, inspiration, optimism, and equality are the standard. Girl Power Talk is where the seeds of future dreams are sown.
Rachita is the CEO and Co-founder of Girl Power Talk. She is also the Chief Marketing Officer for New York based Blue Ocean Global Technology, a leading Online Reputation Management digital agency. Her responsibilities include corporate communications, client engagement, and new business development. She leads the evaluation of all new potential Girl Power Talk team members and expansion into new markets. Rachita is committed to leveraging digital technology to improve efficiency and profitability. She guides strategic collaboration with agency partners in North America & Europe. She also seeks to create a merit-based culture that rewards integrity, persistence, and achievement. She serves as a Chairperson for the All Ladies League (ALL), a comprehensive network for women with over 70,000 affiliate members in 150 countries. In 2020, she was awarded the ‘Most Promising Woman in IT‘ Award by Aatm Nirbhar Women’s Association Trust. As a technology entrepreneur, financial literacy advocate and voice for those who don’t have one on social issues adversely impacting women in India, Rachita finds inspiration in Mother Teresa’s wisdom: “None of us, including me, ever do great things. But we can all do small things, with great love, and together we can do something wonderful.”