Urmila Biswas: Entrepreneur by Chance, Leader by Design

Urmila Biswas,Founder & Director

Urmila Biswas

Founder & Director

As ironic as it may sound, uncertainty is often the only certainty there is. One can plan every step of their lives immaculately, yet find themselves amidst a sea of uncertainty. For some, this can be a source of stress, but there are few who not only embrace the uncertainty, but also turn it into an opportunity. The career trajectory of Urmila Biswas, Founder & Director, Lateral Thinkers, a PR Organization, is a testament of the power of embracing uncertainty. The astute communications maverick was on a sabbatical from work amidst a personal crisis in 2013 when she laid the foundations of Lateral Thinkers. Five years down the line, the firm has developed specialty in rendering creative, intelligent and efficient solutions for new-age enterprises as well as established brands seeking a strategic approach to their communication mix. Having worked with some of the biggest names in the infrastructure, technology, healthcare, and realty sector, Urmila and her team are working towards sustained growth.

Turning Uncertainty into Opportunities
A staunch believer in holistic growth, Urmila has invested her time and energy into developing a plethora of talents and building a well-rounded personality. The trained dancer started out by being a part of Shiamak Davar’s Institute of Performing Arts and then representing India at the Closing Ceremony of the Commonwealth Games in Melbourne. Furthering her creative pursuits, Urmila also took up acting as a career and worked with acclaimed Kannada film director Chaitanya Karihalli in three feature films.

While on a short break to find the right movie projects to work on, Urmila opted for a one-month internship at O&M as a stop-gap arrangement. This became her stepping stone into the PR industry and she spent six long years with the organization.“While working with O&M, I had the
opportunity of working with clients across industry verticals, including SAAB-Gripen, Prestige Group, UB City and Apollo Hospitals, among others. The insights I gained from interactions with head honchos on strategy and business have helped me enormously with the growth of Lateral Thinkers,” says Urmila. Additionally, she leverages her specialisation in Journalism and Psychology for her astute understanding of media and consumer behaviour.

" A staunch believer in holistic growth, Urmila has invested her time and energy into developing a plethora of talents and building a well-rounded personality "

Opting for Organic Growth
In today’s exceedingly competitive world, where most businesses are in a bid to chase number, Urmila takes a different approach in terms of building her business. “Ambition for me is not synonymous with ruthless competition. We want to grow organically,” explains Urmila. However, undertaking an unusual approach to business is never easy and Urmila initially struggled to find associates who could engage beyond business revenues and share her dream to let the organization grow organically. Within a year, Saswati Chakravarty, a veteran with over 30 years of experience in the media industry came on board as a strategic advisory. Soon, Sudhakar Rao, a friend and seasoned PR professional, joined the organisation as an equal partner.

Having put together a strong team of seasoned professionals, Lateral Thinkers does not invest time or energy in promoting itself online or offline; instead, the firm’s work and goodwill speak for itself. As a consequence, most of Lateral Thinker’s clients have come on board through referrals. The firm’s social media presence consists only of a FB page where the team uploads interesting client stories.

Relishing the freedom to think of innovative ways that add value to one’s team as well as client’s business, Urmila looks back at her entrepreneurial journey fondly. “Although it has not been easy, but the experience has been incredibly gratifying. We managed to break even in the first year and have been growing ever since,”Urmila reminisces.

Maintaining the Personal& Professional Status-Quo
A believer in working smart and not just hard, Urmila does not
believe in the 9-5 workdays; aslong as the work gets done, it doesn’t matter if one is in office or logging in from home. The hard working team lets its hair down on Fridays for team lunches and unwinds on the weekend. This fitness enthusiast often turns to adrenaline-filled workouts as her salvation as it offers her peace of mind and the motivation to move forward. Unfazed when it comes to achieving work-life balance, Urmila maintains that the key is to treat one’s job not as another chore, but as a passion - something that engages one’s mind as well as heart.

The level headed entrepreneur draws inspiration and support from her family. From an early age, Urmila’s mother encouraged her daughters to dream big and her father was the perfect role model in terms of hard work and perseverance. A self- proclaimed animal lover, Urmila’s happy family also includes her doggos - Boo and Daisy. Actively involved in the rehabilitation of abandoned dogs, Urmila intends to someday start an NGO for animals. A voracious reader and tech gadget enthusiast, Urmila can often be seen engrossed in her iPhone, Macbook Pro and iPad.

A seasoned business woman, Urmila believes that a leader is not just someone who leads but also someone who is not hesitant to follow. “My professional experience has taught me that a good leader is essentially a good mentor; someone who can put her team ahead of herself and encourage them to aspire for more,” Urmila elaborates. An eternal optimist, Urmila hopes and dreams of a day when every woman will be financially independent and self-reliant.

Key Management:
Urmila Biswas,Founder& Director
A keen communications strategist and a people’s leader, Urmila today forms the backbone of Lateral Thinkers. Armed with over 10 years of experience in the field of PR, she excels at managing executive communications, product, tech and consumer PR outreach as well as crisis communications for various large format and early stage companies.

Offerings: Media Relations, Startup Evangelist, Media Planning, Media Monitoring, Content Writing, &Crisis Management