Ad Land’s Young Guns: Neha Bahri, Founder & Director, Bconnect Communications
A strategic communication entrepreneur professional having close to a decade of experience in the marketing communication & the PR industry, Neha Bahri, Founder & Director of Bconnect Communications, brings along a specialization in creating & building the brand across the domain. Her foundation lies in learning & distributing the learning among the peer group. She has been felicitated with 40 under 40 and she is an entrepreneur as well.
She has also worked as a journalist with tech portals like CIOL and blogs with an experience spanning across the verticals like Technology, Enterprise Technology, Startups, Education, Hospitality, HR & some more. Bahri has also been associated with startup brands like Intex, Delhivery, MyOperator.
Her Core Skills include Working with cross-functional teams of Creative, Sales, and Marketing for smooth & timely execution of strategy, Planning, Managing & Executing Event, Conceptualizing & Creating Marketing Collaterals and Actively involved in Product Development & Design and Strategic partnership. She has always believed in being as transparent and authentic as possible, to establish a lifetime trust and positive image amongst your clients.
Find out from Neha Bahri about the skill sets and learnings to gain knowledge in the industry and to primarily focus on tackling multiple situations with proficiency.
What particular skill sets do you think you bring to the table?
The field of communication brings in an array of opportunities which implies that you cannot rely on any one skill. You need to have the mindset to tackle multiple situations which requires one to have multiple skill sets as well. One must be as proactive and should know how to juggle multiple hats at the same time with proficiency and zero errors. While one needs to have specialized skill sets, it also implies that you need to upgrade your skills from time to time to stay at pace with the changing standards.
It has been a decade long journey for me in the communication sector, which has helped me develop a strong insight about the market statistics and strategic approaches in this ever- changing world of communication. This is how I ensure that my clients are able to grow manifolds with targeted planning and strong content generation. Managing the team is not an easy task, it takes a lot of patience and an outlook to contribute to the growth of your team members. Living in the shoes of an entrepreneur, I bring on the table a holistic approach of devising strategies and plans that are comprehensive and highly successful for my clients.
How did you join your current organisation?
I joined my current organisation as the Founder of Bconnect Communications. So, as my designation suggests, this was the role I chose for joining my very own company which was my brainchild. It is a boutique agency that was formulated during the pandemic. A bold step that came out of courage and experience. It is the amalgamation of trust and expertise that has helped my startup flourish even in the Covid era.
It has been about 10 years in the communication industry. I have seen the demographics and observed the crests and troughs of an agency by working with brands like IdeaExchange, Mutual and Weber, to name a few. Adding to this professionally I have also worked as a journalist with the cybermedia group publication CIOL & PCQuest. I like writing and so during my initial years I also worked as a blogger for various blogs. This makes me a journalist at heart and a PR professional with mind, which is what adds value to my work. Or should I say, I have an experience of Triangle. Post my journalism stint, I worked in the domain of corporate communication- marcom with the prominent startup brands like Intex, Delhivery, MyOperator. After years of experience, I created my own brand with the objective to develop an ecosystem for clients wherein the media presence can resonate their growth and amplify it.
Icons in this field you look up to and how they have influenced you and your work?
It is very difficult to take one single name right now. There are different individuals who have been a support throughout my career journey. To name them, the people I look up to are quite a few. Starting with Anuj Bhagia, currently leading PolicyBazaar communication team. I met him almost 3 years down the line where I learned “the art of exploring things”. Which means that one must always strive to go beyond the comfort zone. There are different aspects of communication, other than PR such as partnership, associations, collaborations etc. Another pillar of strength and an inspiration is Aman Dhall who is exceptionally skilled in the art of networking & culminating things. Apart from these people, Paarul Chand (the woman power of PR moments) & Anup Sharma (the independent comms consultant) were big support pillars during my establishment. [MKT1]
What are the five most productive things that you do in your everyday routine?
- Buddhist chanting is what I have been doing for over a year. It is extremely helpful in self-healing.
- No matter how busy the work schedule is, I never forget to give calls to my parents twice a day to check on them. I always want to know how they are, what they are doing, just to be in touch with them
- Reading various books does help me in planning my life and work well. I like reading non-fiction books based on entrepreneurship. This helps me in gaining from the experiences of others.
- An important aspect of my career is to be in touch with people or in simpler terms what we call networking.
- My to-do list is always a saviour, as it helps me stay on track. It keeps me rolling out for WIP (Work in Progress) and helps keep an eye on what not to miss out.
Do you think a career in this field is a viable one in the long term?
Yes! The changing landscape of the communication industry across the globe has kept this industry at its feet. We saw a transition from traditional media to digital and social media to audio media over the years which in itself is an indication of the rapid growth that the field of communication has seen in the past few years. Constant evolution of technology is the most evident proof and reason for its growth.
While in the primitive times the main focal point was the brands, in the current world it is the communities that matters. Pandemic itself has given a 360 degree turn to the way brands communicate with its audience and how the audience responds to the communication. In the coming times, PR will further evolve and adapt to the changing scenarios due to the effect of Covid-19 on various industries. However, with rapid digitization individuals and brands both will increase their demand for PR in the online space.
What does it take to succeed in a career?
One’s passion and zeal to learn makes you succeed in any career. The mantra is to be as transparent and authentic as possible, to establish a lifetime trust and positive image amongst your clients. Another key element for success is to have experienced guidance in the form of a mentor. I never had one, which is why I started with my own share of ups and downs. Having a mentor is one of your biggest strengths as the constant motivation, advice and supervision will help you in becoming a strong leader with minimum pitfalls.
What would be your advice to youngsters planning to enter this industry?
There is no rocket science to be a part of this communication industry. It is the passion in you to learn which will help you in achieving great heights. Next advice is to do in-depth research and, in the process, develop a habit of networking with people from all walks of life. Remember that everything and everyone has something to teach you in life. You need to be proactive towards your self-growth and the growth of your clients. Remember, anything can change with a blink of the eyes. “Adaptation” is the word I would say.
Where do you see yourself in five years’ time?
Five years down the line, I want to see Bconnect Communications to be a full-fledged agency rather than a boutique agency. I envision myself as someone’s mentor pushing the younger minds to shape up their future. Most importantly, I would like to be known as someone who has contributed to industry.
Is there any organization that you would like to work with in the future?
I would surely like to connect with organizations that are liberal in their mindset and continuously focus on not just their growth but also the growth of their stakeholders. I would like to work with brands that value hard work and vision over hollow stories.
While I agree that there is no space for mistakes in the corporate world, there are only lessons and hence on my journey in the corporate world I would want to create an ecosystem for healthy growth where success and failures are equally seen as opportunities. This will also be a step towards developing a healthier India, less controlled by anxiety and failures.