Don’t wait to seek approval, believe in yourself: Saily Lad, founder-director, Volksara Pvt Ltd

The Proust Questionnaire is a questionnaire about one’s personality. It has its origins in a parlour game popularised by Marcel Proust, the French essayist, who believed that, in answering these questions, an individual reveals his or her true nature.

Saily Lad is director of Volksara  Pvt Ltd and Krystal Group of Companies and has become a prominent name in technology-led securities in India over the last decade. She, along with her team at Volksara work on providing comprehensive security and safety solutions, along with integration of products, systems and services that are backed by a highly skilled software R&D team, adept in software application development in advance technology domain of Security Surveillance.

She has a BA in Strategic Management and Consulting from Nottingham Trent University and a MSc in business consulting from Royal Holloway University of London and is one of India’s leading tech entrepreneurs today.

Through her work on the Smart City project in India, she has been recognised for her efforts, and won the Best Safe City in India (Nasik, Kumbh Mela). Other than this, she has also been lauded for her work on a variety of national projects, which include Mumbai airport Matheran Safe City, Nashik Smart City, Pimpri Chinchwadh Smart City, Namchi Smart City, Mumbai Nirbhaya, Navi Mumbai Safe City, Gondia Safe City, Goa shipyard, Gail pipeline, securities across Gujarat and more.

A well-recognised new age entrepreneur, Saily is known as a responsible risk taker. Her stance on women empowerment and gender equality has been an inspiration for many. Apart from work, Saily is a voracious reader, who loves indulging in a vast variety of genres like fiction, autobiographies, religion and non-fiction, and is an avid traveller too. Here are her responses to our Proust questionnaire…

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Nothing makes me happier than spending time with my dogs. They’re the best!

What is your greatest fear?

The fear of missing out on certain opportunities due to prior commitments.

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?

My tendency to be a perfectionist and being unable to tolerate dishonesty.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?

I like confidence in people. A lack of confidence is something I find repelling.

Which living person do you most admire?

Narendra Modi. His generosity, humility and his journey to this prestigious position are an inspiration to many.

What is your greatest extravagance?

My pets. I have four dogs, fishes and birds.

What is your current state of mind?

Make the best use of my time at home to develop business strategies, and also work as much as I can on our NGO during these tough times.

What do you consider the most overrated virtue?

Obedience is a virtue I often find overrated. There is great value in getting differing opinions; it forces you to gain a deeper understanding of issues. But if people are only obedient, that halts progress.

On what occasion do you lie?

I avoid lies unless it is really necessary or to save a near and dear one.

What do you most dislike about your appearance?

No one likes to highlight the dislikes, especially when we talk about appearances. I believe that every woman is beautiful in their own way and appearance is just a cover but beauty goes beyond all of that.

What is the quality you most like in a woman?

The ability to prioritise and the ability to know when to take practical and emotional decisions.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?

Don’t give up, don’t wait to seek approval, and believe in yourself.

What or who is the greatest love of your life?

My family has always been, and will always be the greatest love of my life!

Which talent would you most like to have?

To be competent in Mathematics, especially dealing with logic and variables. Math is all around us, in everything we do. It would be great to have a deeper understanding of this, and use it to my advantage.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

My temper has got me in trouble a few times, so I’d want to change that!

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Working with the team I started out with even today.

If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?

I’d love to come back a person again. There’s so much opportunity to attempt new things, that I doubt I’ll be able to achieve everything in one life!

Where would you most like to live?

I am happy where I am. My home is my sanctuary; one I wouldn’t trade for the world.

What is your most treasured possession?

My family is extremely important to me, and their trust is my most treasured possession.

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?

To see people suffering even after hours of hard work.

What is your favourite occupation?

My business.

What is your most marked characteristic?

I’ve been told helpfulness is my most marked characteristic.

What do you most value in your friends?

The attitude of helping others and being supportive.

Who are your favourite writers?

Radha Krishnan Pillai is my all-time favourite.

Who is your hero of fiction?

Superman has always been a favourite right from childhood!

Which historical figure do you most identify with?

Chanakya. He was a man of great tactics that he orchestrated in changing the course of Indian history.

Who are your heroes in real life?

My parents.

What is your favourite name?

“Aai” this means mother in Marathi. The word has so much of feel and emotions attached to it that no other name could have so much meaning.

What is it that you most dislike?

Dishonesty is a trait I abhor.

What is your greatest regret?

Not giving myself enough time to relax and focus on myself.

How would you like to die?

I’d like a simple, but peaceful death.

What is your favourite journey?

My journey from being a college girl to a business woman has been extremely interesting and fun.

What is your motto?

To give as much as I can to the world, mother nature and most importantly encourage the youth to have a vision for the future.


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