Updated: May 19
When Kusuma’s son got the chance to appear for a national level competition in Kolkata, Kusuma arranged for the entire trip. She took him by flight to Kolkata and ensured that her son didn’t miss a chance to grow his talent. Isn’t it extraordinary for a woman from a village to make this happen? This was much before Kusuma came to the Buzz training. Imagine what such a self-driven woman like Kusuma could achieve if she got a fair chance?
Kusuma, a 35-year-old, ran a small fancy store business from her house in her village in Gauribidanur Taluk. It was a small engagement which didn't bring her much satisfaction. She was staying at home, not earning much, and feeling her life was constrained. Then came an opportunity to start a full-fledged shop in the village. Kusuma’s friend was moving out of her beauty parlour and she suggested that Kusuma rent that space for her shop. She felt this was a good idea and her father provided her with the necessary financial assistance to proceed.
She had just moved to the rented shop, and the business was generating her a profit of Rs 8000 per month. That’s when Kusuma came to the Buzz Business (Vyapar) training.
‘Until I came to the training, I didn’t have the knowledge I needed to improve my business. But now my thinking has changed. I think bigger and better. I analyse opportunities, weigh my options, and make choices that will help improve my business. I learned how to invest in the business so that it gives me maximum returns. This is helping me thrive and I’m thoroughly enjoying being an entrepreneur”, says Kusuma.
And she’s indeed thriving – Kusuma makes a profit of Rs 20,000 per month! That's a 250% increase in her income within just 8 months of attending the training. The shop became a platform for her experiments as an empowered entrepreneur. She added more variety of products. From her savings, she bought a new tailoring machine and added tailoring as an additional service. She started selling ready-made dresses as well. Her thinking is driven by the thought, ‘what and how can I do better’.
Kusuma now wants to buy a commercial space for the shop. Her rationale, “The money I spend on rent can go to interest for the loan that I will take for the new shop. In the long run, I would have an asset for myself”. How proud are we to hear how Kusuma is thinking and planning her finances!
There’s something that brings Kusuma even more satisfaction – the fact that she’s transformed her home and as she built her business. She bought a washing machine; she got all the good woodwork done in the house; bought a computer for her children and set it up with a computer table; and bought gold for herself. While she focuses on improving their lifestyle, her husband’s income, from his job as a temple priest, goes to their savings. They have invested in Recurring Deposits in the Post Office and have bought LIC bonds. They repaid all their loans and now avoid debt as much as possible.
Women like Kusuma are unstoppable. People in her village wonder how she does it all. Her answer, “It’s all thanks to knowledge”.