Akta Sehgal A Financial Mentor & Philanthropist Shares her Success Story
Akta Sehgal, a financial mentor and a social activist who believes in 3 Es and 3ps – Educate Empower and enlighten with passion, panache and perseverance and she have been extensively working towards creating financial awareness across women and kids., bridging the gap and working towards quality education, Diversity and inclusion and women hygiene, she hail from an army background and believe in calling spade is a spade.
She is also the founder of Manas Wealth, Motherhood club, Kiddomentoring, Mcube and Vanyas Craft
MYPENCILDOTCOM: Why did you choose social work as a career?
Akta Sehgal: As a child, my parents once took me to the backside of a 5 star hotel in Mumbai, then Bombay. What I saw there at the age of 5 has stayed with me. I saw humans and animals eating the leftovers from the same dump yard. It was so heart touching and left an impression on me, that one I would never waste food and two, I shall always do my bit for the society. After I started working in the financial industry, I would carry extra food with me and gave to a child or an elderly person. In March 2020, I took on a mission to give back to the society to educate empower and enlighten them and bridging the gap and work towards inclusiveness.
I started three platforms, absolutely non-commercial to give women and kids an Identity that they would feel motivated and love themselves. Starting September 2021, we made a conscious effort to raise funds for supporting women hygiene, We started distributing sanitary pads to women and girls in slum of Noida, Delhi, Bhopal ,Banaras and Dehradun.
MYPENCILDOTCOM: Describe your process for creating a case plan
Akta Sehgal: I am a financial mentor by profession, and firmly believe in following the process and set goals. While we set our goals we focus on the process to achieve the goal. When we started our initiatives, we made our team who would front run it, women who believe in supporting women.
Most often that not an organisation or an initiative fails as the team is not in sync with each other and the leader is looking for his or her own visibility. Our initiatives are well thought and discussed with our sensibly chosen team with a total experience of close to 95 years and with diversity.
We have given a formal structure and each us believes in the three Es and 3 Ps – Educate Empower and Enlighten with Passion Panache and Perseverance.
We focus on learning, inclusiveness and encouraging many to come out of their comfort zone to identify themselves and inspire many. We bring a wholistic view and believe in experiential learning rather than just giving lectures. Our approach is walk the talk, we don’t just talk rather do it ourselves, If we cant practice what we preach , we have no reason to mentor anyone
MYPENCILDOTCOM: Which of your traits do you feel helps you the most as a social activist?
Akta Sehgal: Well be it a social activist or a professional , I feel these are the following traits that have helped me achieve all that I have with my own shares of ups and downs
- Process driven
- Networking & Relationship
- Unity , its also in my name ( akta means unity)
- Team work
All this has helped me and my team achieve all that we have been in a short span
MYPENCILDOTCOM: As a social worker, what do you hope to achieve?
Akta Sehgal: Quality Education, Inclusiveness , Right to Dignity and Good Health with Good wealth
MYPENCILDOTCOM: Which past accomplishment are you proudest of, and why?
Akta Sehgal: My most accomplished achievement in the past has been to create platforms – Motherhood Club, MCube, Kiddomentoring and Vanyascraft. As a professional , financial mentor be it in the corporate world or as an entrepreneur I did well and always felt my work is my passion and my passion is my work, but when I started my Financial awareness programs I realised financial independence and confidence can never be achieved if the basics are not in place. I wont be ever able to educate empower and enlighten anyone until we work towards Our dignity, respect, identity and inclusiveness, This can happen with education, and by education I mean not just scholastic but real life experience, encouraging one to explore their passion and right to menstrual hygiene.
Having started all these social initiatives during the lockdown gave me a purpose in life and changed my life totally. I owe it to Motherhood club the team and the members specially, who believed in me and transformed me
MYPENCILDOTCOM: Why did you start financial awareness and why specially for women and kids?
Akta Sehgal: Oh, this Is something very close to my heart, I started financial awareness programs in March 2016, when a Telecom company asked me to conduct a session for their mid management employees under the diversity program.
It made me lock back into my career to realise that there are hardly any women investors that i had who were decision makers. I was compelled to go with some myths in my session to receive affirmation that yes, these myths are real. Investment and Finances have always been considered as a man’s world.
Women across age groups and industries who attended my session validated the myths I went with. The genesis of all the myths is at the time when we are a child, hence mentoring kids on money matters is of utmost importance and women,especiallymothers, who are the torch bearer for every child, a leader for all, if she isn’t financially confident, well the legacy she leaves behind is definitely not confident either. 76 % of the Indian adult population is financially illiterate, and this indeed Is an alarming number., Since 2016 I have been on a mission to create financial awareness thru blogs, vlogs, articles, training sessions, poetries and webinars. Hoping to make a difference in the life of women and children
MYPENCILDOTCOM: ‘Are the women of our country financially independent today & confident’, what’s your view on this?
Akta Sehgal: Off course Indian women are working towards financial independence and many have achieved it by becoming entrepreneurs, professionals, salaried employees etc, but the moot question here is are they financially confident. Being financially independent doesn’t mean to be financially confident, women have started earning and have earned the status of being independent, but when it comes to managing their hard-earned money, their dependency on their male counterparts is phenomenally high. The most important factor that women don’t manage their money is financial confidence and, 33 % weightage is to this confidence. Women don’t believe themselves that they have the potential to manage their finances, as from the time they are born they are made to believe that their Maths is weak, there data analytics ability is poor and hence they start believing and hence find reasons to not manage it themselves. What is interesting to note is that all the attributes that are needed to manage money and for investment are inborn abilities women have.
Qualities for Investment Management
- Long term approach
- Risk assessment
- Process driven
Women need to believe in themselves as that’s the first step to attaining financial confidence. Second the myth of finance or money management being complicated has to by busted, Investments is more about you then numbers. With a little change in mindset, and acceptance of our own capability and blocking ourselves from the good old stereotyping, we will work towards being financially confident
MYPENCILDOTCOM: What would you like to say about the role of a women in our economic development?
Akta Sehgal: Women, women and women alone can double the world economy, the potential she has, the innate talent she possesses, the extensive dependence on her fresh outlook in industries is making her an integral part of the growth in the economy not just in India but world over. Many research reports highlight her consumer spending capability, her wealth accumulation and the ideation she does.
Time has come to go beyond the Trophy employees and having a woman on the board for statutory reasons, today she is leading business and is needed for the balance, creativity and stability that she brings to the business. No longer is she only a teacher , she is a mentor coach, leading from the front. She believes in her capability to perform, but a lot more can be achieved provided women support women and the camaraderie is seen . For women to flourish and thereby the economy we all need to work hand in hand and get caught in the cob web of stereotyping, gender discrimination and play to our strength and not basis our gender.
MYPENCILDOTCOM: As you are an award-winning activist tell me about all your achievements
Akta Sehgal: Winning awards,is a testimony that you are on the right path and have worked towards achieving something beyond your comfort zone. Till date I have won 29 awards and believe me every ward is special and makes me more humble, as I also feel that winning is one, but to be able to maintain and do even better is the biggest challenge. With awards comes the responsibility to continue do your work and be focussed. It is also a reminder of all the failures that you stepped on to reach where you have , and this reminder helps you compete with your own self. My competition is with me myself and award or no award my focus on 3 E’s and 3 P’s shall continue – Educate Empower and Enlighten with passion panache and perseverance
MYPENCILDOTCOM: Give a message to our Mypencildotcom readers.
Akta Sehgal: Would like to give my message In the form of poetry
Educate empower enlighten yourself
For you are the change we all wish
Say no to financial infidelity
Bring in that agility
You are the twilight of every house
You always shine so bright
You the women of today are the torch bearer
Break the ceiling
Jump up high
Perhaps the sky is pink
While you wink
Choose to challenge, the inevitable
For your spirit is indomitable
Its not about Victory or failure
Its about the effort you make
For your effort is what will inspire
Victory for many and more