Bhawna Agarwal: On Being Competitive & Not Waiting For Special Occasions

Welcome to our section on Real Women—where we bring you stories of and conversations with real women who inspire us, who have changed lives and given back to the community. Today I have with us Bhawna Agarwal, Country Head – Strategy & Growth at Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Consultant & Entrepreneur. Browse through our quick chat on business, being competitive & living in the moment instead of waiting for special occasions.

 1. We know that you don many hats. What is that people don’t know about you?
I’m very competitive, partly due to my sports background, and have always worked hard to win. But I’ve realised that sometimes, it takes the joy away from the game. Over the years, I’ve reoriented myself to learn the joy of competing, making peace with the outcome & bouncing back harder with better learnings. This isn’t something that I talk about often.

2. What inspired you to do what you’re doing right now? How has the journey been so far?
I’ve always picked up things that I love. My sense of happiness & passion has inspired me to do what I do. If you’re a multitasker, it’s very important to love & respect what you do, especially when you’re balancing a lot of things. If you’re spending time away from family, it’s vital to ensure that your work is worth it. So far, this rollercoaster ride has been extremely rewarding! I’ve been blessed to work in multiple, multicultural industries. At times, it feels like everything is spinning out of control. But it’s how you turn such situations around. It’s been humbling, helped me move out of my comfort zone, to grow & stay relevant.

 

3. If you had a chance to do things differently, would you change anything?
I’d take a lot more risks than I did. I would enjoy every step of the journey instead of focusing on just winning. In hindsight, I’d only change that & keep everything else as is.

4. Any learnings or insights that you’d like to share with the readers
All of us went through a lot in 2020. But things don’t need to be black & white, they can be good & bad at the same time. The way I look back at it & what I’ll definitely carry forward is the fact that it was an amazing year of learnings. It became a reflection of what’s really important in life. 2020 surely changed everybody & forced them to prioritise & make time. I got a lot of “me” time to enjoy things & my personality wasn’t moulded by social pressure. Also, having more or less time on your hands doesn’t necessarily make you more productive. What you do with that time, makes you more productive.

5. What do you indulge in when you aren’t working?
I love reading, both fiction & non-fiction. Some of my favourites are To Kill A Mockingbird & Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind. I also love playing with my young one, be it indoor or outdoor.

6. What are you carrying forward into 2021?
Be present & live in the moment. A lot of us have been conditioned to wait for a special occasion, like saving a special outfit for a special day. Why spend time waiting? The right time is where you are & where you want to be. Just put on that outfit, dress up for yourself & celebrate that moment!


All images used are the sole property of Bhawna Agarwal and cannot be used without prior permission.

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