Hi! My name is Archana Suresh Daga. I was born and raised in Bangkok, Thailand and belong to a fairly liberal family that always emphasised on following my dreams but making sure I was the best at it. I was a studious child back in school and college. After completing my school education in Bangkok, I moved to Chennai, India to pursue my Bachelors degree in Finance. I was mentally prepared for the culture shock, but what I found rather difficult was that I was suddenly pitted against kids who were school/district level toppers in Accounting, whereas my background on the subject was absolutely nil. With rigorous tuitions and concentration I managed to not only pass all the subjects but also with first class.
Soon after college, I got my first job with Ernst & Young (E&Y) one of the reputed Big 4 financial firms in the world where I worked before I realised that Finance was not my forte. So after careful evaluation, I went ahead and got a Masters Degree in Advertising and Public Relations. This was a subject I thoroughly loved and thought I could be really good at. I subsequently got a job with 2020 MSL, a European PR company that has branches across India. I really loved my job, made some really good friends, but had to quit when in 2016 I decided to get married to my then long time boyfriend, now husband. Before the marriage, I quit my job and moved back home to spend some quality time with my parents.
Post my marriage is when I faced several issues on a professional front. I was constantly in a dilemma about whether to go back into a corporate job or to start a company of my own. Considering I got married into a business family, my husband encouraged me to start something on my own and always said that I had the potential to run my own show. Starting a business of your own requires a lot of hard work and brainstorming. I came up with several ideas for a business which I initially thought might be very lucrative, but ended up scrapping. Several times, I got so caught up in my emotion and almost went back into a corporate job, only because I couldn’t relate to being just a housewife. As someone who had been working from straight out of college, I was used to having an extremely independent and productive lifestyle. This feeling almost made me consider several corporate job offers that I received during that time.
When I was so close to giving up on my dream of starting something of my own was when I conceived the idea of my startup, ‘The Kind Earth’. At The Kind Earth, we manufacture a range of eco friendly products. We started out with making Bamboo Straws, and that’s when we realised that the demand for products that cater to a more sustainable, minimal lifestyle is vast. Post that we went onto developing several innovative products that focus on being zero plastic. My whole motto with The Kind Earth was to reduce the carbon footprint on the planet, and I had always been leaning towards a sustainable business model. It was a difficult ende