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Turning every page there is – my fellowship journey!

 My journey since 2019 has been a rollercoaster ride where I grew up from a carefree teenager to a responsibly carefree young adult.

I find movies based on real-life stories like Bhagh Milkha Bhagh and Mary Kom very inspiring. They both hit a low point in their lives and bounced back stronger. Their stories were bigger, no doubt, but my story as an Enterprise partner, I would say, is a mini version of that. It inspires me, makes me stronger, and prepares me to face the new world we’re living in now. In 2019, mini-me was a simple Second Year engineering student who wanted to meet amazing people, feel relevant, and do crazy spontaneous things. Little did I know that I would join Enterprise and discover myself, my potential, my strengths and weaknesses, grow up in the process, and be so grateful for all the opportunities.

So how did it all start?

My sister, Khushbu, was already an EP partner and their batch was all set for #karo2.0, a fellowship event. I had been hearing so much about the event that I felt like being a part of it. Luckily they allowed me to join as an intern and I started going to space in June 2019. I went in with no expectations and no concrete thoughts. The whole vibe was so welcoming, as though one had been invited to a work party. In those 3 weeks, they trusted someone completely new like me to handle their social media and coordinate registrations. I spoke with many attendees before the main event. That was a big responsibility. That’s when I knew that Enterprise was and still is all about jumping in, taking up work as though you’re already running a real business with real money. What a beautiful experience #karo was for me. Less than a month later, in July 2019, I joined as a partner. My first event was REGEN where I heard EP fellows share their stories and said to myself, “Neha, you have to create a powerful story by the end of this fellowship too”.  I then worked on 3 offline events – Fifa tournament, Tinker Fest Diwali, and Tinker Fest Christmas. 

The sessions I attended at the space included highlights like Visionboard where I picked random magazines and whatever pictures appealed to my eyes, I cut them out and stuck them onto a board. 

 

I never realised how much I had learned about life through these offline projects and sessions, until now. The learnings are going to remain with me for a reallyyyy long time. That was the end of the offline era for me as we slowly started working online when the pandemic hit. 

 

I started using my laptop properly for the first time for Enterprise work in March 2020. I was convinced that it would all go back to normal within a month and started curating an event called Fever Of Treasure with a fellow partner. But after a month, we realised no, it’s not opening up and changed the event from offline to online. We hosted virtual Scavenger Hunts for 3 different communities in the span of 2 months. I also participated in one of them as my family had joined as well. It was refreshing since all 4 of us, my father, mother, and sister played together after a long time.

 

I also wrote my first blog around the same time. Reflecting and putting my thoughts into words was never a piece of cake for me but after publishing my final edit, I felt relieved since a very big part of my teenage life, my junior college experience, was out there for people to read. 

https://letsenterprise.in/blog/two-years-of-junior-college-are-the-foundation-years-of-your-life-grab-every-opportunity/

 

By May, we had all realised that the fellowship was going to be online for longer. And as the structure of the fellowship was evolving, the team introduced LEAPS to us. LEAP is a 3-month project with real clients. That’s where I got the opportunity to work with Dharohar, a Jaipur-based company. Our team met twice everyday. 7 am and 4 pm for three months straight. Yes, it may sound impossible, but we actually did! Focusing on the learnings here, my productivity level was insanely high at the time. I was so focused. I prioritised it. Worked on it sincerely. Learned how to work in a team with equal responsibilities. I still haven’t met our clients in person but that didn’t stop me from making new friends. That’s how powerful working online is. We could work with organisations outside of our own city. Now, what happened after this? I was so happy and satisfied with Enterprise and college. Everything was going perfectly well. And suddenly, I felt like doing nothing. Didn’t sign up for projects, sessions, nothing. Started focusing less on college. It was like I completely disappeared after being so productive for months. I gave up on my startup Fever Of Treasure and felt guilty for a long time. But even though I didn’t want to disappear, I didn’t know how to stop myself. This went on for 4-5 months. And like a blink of an eye, it was already April 2021. Third Year of college was almost over. Enterprise had welcomed new partners and a few graduated as well while I was stuck in one place.

Around the same time, the team introduced CAPSULES to us. A 4-week project with real clients. I was so scared to commit to any project after everything, with the fear that I won’t finish it. But my mentors trusted me and let me be a part of it. Total Coffee was my last project as a partner and it was so much fun. I could think with a clear mind. I could implement learnings from previous experiences and I was positive about everything. It worked out well and the clients were happy too. 

After that, I kept thinking about what changed. And what went wrong before Total Coffee? Why was I so zoned out? And after reflecting, I concluded that I never really tried to balance. It was either 100 or 0. When everything was offline, I somehow balanced work, family, friends, and college. But when it shifted to online, I was either all work or all family or all friends. The whole time, I kept avoiding online connections. When I was working on projects, I disconnected from friends, and to some extent my family as well, and when I was spending more time with the latter, I couldn’t get myself to work. And this has been the biggest life lesson for me. The pandemic hit us all in different ways. Having experienced Enterprise offline, I didn’t imagine that online, I would be able to work harder and on more projects.                                           

  [blockquote text=”It was really my chance to experience both sides.” text_color=”” width=”” line_height=”undefined” background_color=”” border_color=”” show_quote_icon=”yes” quote_icon_color=”#fed240″]

Through these ups and downs, I now know that Balance is everything. And had it not been for Enterprise, I had a good chance of failing big later in life. Enterprise never gave up on me, welcomed me back with open arms after every failure, celebrated and made me feel appreciated after every success, and trusted me with client projects. It always was and always will be a safe circle for me. And I can’t wait to experience more as a fellow soon.

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