Sameera, Joanne & Miskil - Entrepreneurs


market of clay pots

Sameera Hemmat (left) is a busy working mom. Originally from India, her career in Human Resources brought her to Toronto, Canada via Dubai. She gave up her senior position in HR to search for a more fulfilling career. Serendipity led her to her Joanne (below) in Vancouver, and together they created Jammy & Co. Sammy’s expertise in communication and networking is invaluable. 

Miskil Dharmadhikari (right), who has a background in Advertising joined forces with Joanne and Sammy from Mumbai, because she liked the idea of marrying Western sensibilities and designs with high-quality Indian cotton and linen, as well as craftsmanship and printing techniques indigenous to Indian artisans. For her, Jammy & Co offers the younger, cosmopolitan Indian generation the level of quality and taste they see in global brands. 



A successful marketing executive from the UK via Dubai and India, Joanne Warburton moved to Vancouver in 2014, where she studied fashion marketing. She started Jammy & Co from her home while juggling a full-time job, three daughters and a husband. Now the juggling act includes a growing global brand.  


Facebook: @jammyandco

Instagram: @jammyandco

Website: www.jammyandco.co


 

Miskil


What inspires you?

The unknown inspires me, the discomfort of doing something new inspires me. Diversity inspires me. That there are so many different ways of looking at the same thing is fascinating. From the traditional textile art of India, to the decadent couture of Champs Elysees, there are so many facets to fashion alone!


How has what you do made an impact on your life?

Starting Jammy & Co in India has been very challenging but the fact that I was able to overcome all the initial hurdles along with my partners and launch a brand that has found many fans in India has given me the confidence to trust my instincts and commitment. It has also brought me in contact with different kinds of people, from the artisans In Jaipur, the suppliers, technicians, to the organisers of glamorous shopping fests, interacting with each one has enriched me as an entrepreneur.


What is the greatest challenge you have faced getting to where you are today? How has that shaped you?

Giving up the comfort and security of an established career in advertising and coming to terms with the reality of entrepreneurship has been challenging. This last year of constant self-motivation, the fire to do well, the struggle to put myself out there for our brand has been scary and fulfilling in equal parts.


What did you want to be when you grew up? What options seemed open or closed to you, if any?

My journey has been more a process of elimination. One thing I always knew was that I wanted to excel at all that I did.

Through a varied journey that took me through Science and Biotechnology to Media and Advertising, I have come a long way to being an entrepreneur.  Throughout the 10 years I spent in advertising, an inner voice kept telling me that I can do this and more on my own. That I am cut out for more than working for others.


It is my belief that whatever one needs, comes to them at the right time. This belief has been cemented by my life’s journey so far. During my sabbatical from advertising,  Sammy came into my life at a chance lunch, and when she took up my suggestion of exploring India as a market for Jammy & Co, and more so, invited me to partner with Jo and her in this venture, it was just the right time for me. Of course I was nervous about quitting an established and lucrative career, but  with my husband’s firm support, I decided to take the plunge.


Who is your role model?

Various people I have met on my journey so far, have imparted a little bit of them to me, the books I’ve read, the movies I’ve watched, the characters in them and the writers that created them are all inspirations for what I strive to be. Recently, Pixar Studio's President, Ed Catmull’s book - Creativity Inc. about how some very smart people built Pixar to achieve enormous success while holding fast to the highest artistic standards  that profoundly changed the business and, along the way, popular culture  has been a great inspiration.


My two beautiful partners inspire me. Both being full time moms and yet being so dedicated to this venture that they truly love, inspires me to do more to run the show here in India.


What in life has brought you the greatest satisfaction?

The greatest satisfaction is the freedom I am able to allow myself today as an entrepreneur, to experiment, fail, learn and grow without the burden of impressing others. At Jammy & Co we are three women who respect each other’s opinions and build on each other’s ideas. It’s a beautiful collaborative process and I look forward to our interactions.


I am thrilled that with Jammy & Co. the three of us, who come from three different worlds bring our own perspectives together to create a product that respects the Indian traditional art of developing cotton fabrics and hand block printing and amalgamates it with the modern western aesthetic to bring a unique collection to the Indian market.


Our ‘Giving Back’ initiative where we support Akshar trust, a school for underprivileged children with hearing impairments, gives me a different level of satisfaction.


One piece of advice to women everywhere.

Every Day, do ONE thing that is out of your comfort zone and build a trust that YOU are always there for yourself. So push yourselves out of your comfort zones and strive for your dreams. Respect, money, success and support will follow.

 

Sammy

What inspires you?

Women in my everyday life and those I’ve met during my travels. Their experiences , strengths and the journey they continue to travel on to be impactful in their own special way, truly inspires me. 


How has what you do made an impact on your life?

Our continued goal to make Jammy a sustainable brand through ethical sourcing,

Low impact machinery and zero waste has impacted the way we live as a family. We have made a conscious effort to reduce our carbon footprint - by eating locally grown organic produce, not buying and reusing plastic, walking and using public transport whenever possible, supporting other local Canadian and Indian brands and finally sharing this knowledge with our family and friends. 


What is the greatest challenge you have faced getting to where you are today? How has that shaped you?

The greatest challenge I’ve faced is letting go of security that comes with a corporate career and learning to be an Entrepreneur. To make mistakes as a team that only empowers you succeed the second time round. Learning to be resilient, self motivated and authentic in what I do everyday. 


What did you want to be when you grew up? What options seemed open or closed to you, if any?

I’ve never had any defined profession that I wanted to follow growing up. Choosing Fashion was never an obvious choice for me but for me it has always been a process of discovering where my strengths lie and choosing a path that I could envision myself happily fitting into. I am very fortunate and grateful for my parents who gave me those opportunities growing up and also being part of a generation where its all about being multi-hyphenate:  Marketing- HR - Mom - Co founder of Jammy&Co.


 Who is your role model?

I’ve had a handful of role models during different phases in life. My current ‘go to girl’ is Michelle Obama. 


What in life has brought you the greatest satisfaction?

Seeing ideas we’ve worked on finally come to life! The true delight on our customers faces when they see and then wear our products.  Also, my daily satisfaction is derived from a decadent piece of dark chocolate. 


One piece of advice to women everywhere.

To have continued belief and patience in whatever it is your aiming whether personal or career, you will find a way to #makeithappen.


Joanne


What inspires you?

My children, their curiosity and positive outlook. My friends and family, the people I surround myself with are a constant source of inspiration. 


How has what you do made an impact on your life?

In many positive ways, it has strengthened the community around me and my girls. Jammy is a brand that our friends have helped us build through modelling for us, graphic designing, photography, online marketing expertise, accounting help and the list goes on.  Starting your own business is a huge learning experience.  Juggling the business with 3 children and a full time job has forced me to value each and every minute in the day!


What is the greatest challenge you have faced getting to where you are today? How has that shaped you? 

Starting over was a big challenge, I decided at 34 to leave the comfort of a successful career in Advertising to return to college to follow my passion and study fashion. It was a challenge for the whole family but one that led to the creation of Jammy & Co. and one that has brought about the steepest and most rewarding learning curve.  It has given me the opportunity to grow towards my full potential and the satisfying ability to be able to give back in ways I couldn’t before.


What did you want to be when you grew up? What options seemed open or closed to you, if any?

My parents raised me to believe that effort equals results and that nothing was holding me back other than myself. As a young adult I remember setting goals for myself with aspirations of being a Brand Manager for Chanel. I’ve always been a fan of Coco for many reasons but mainly for her innate sense of style and elegance and her capabilities as a designer and business woman.


Who is your role model?

It changes, I like to focus on improving myself step by step by kicking bad habits or learning new skills. At the moment I am aspiring towards more efficiency!  I would love to be more like my partner, he is a ‘doer’ not a talker and kills to do lists in half the time it takes me without getting distracted!


What in life has brought you the greatest satisfaction?

My children. I am inspired by their maturity and perspective. They make me feel positive about the future of the world as their generation is so globally aware and accepting of diversity. They make me proud every day.


One piece of advice to women everywhere.

Focus on the moment you are in, be kind to yourself. As working mum’s we feel constantly torn between children and work unable to give 100% to either. One way I find to manage this and gain a feeling of accomplishment is to be 100% in the moment I am in. No work distractions during quality time with the kids and I make sure they are well looked after when it’s time to work so I can focus.

 

#womensday #women #makeithappen

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"We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect” - Anais Nin

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