We sat down to talk with Neelam Kandari, who has been with A-TEX India for almost a decade, fueling projects with her impressive skills and curious nature, always looking to grow, learn and explore possibilities. After a sudden career change from broadcasting to textiles, Neelam found her calling as a Sourcing Manager with A-TEX. Read more about Neelam below and check out her greeting video.
If you don’t know much about Sourcing, you might also not know much about its importance. As Neelam puts it, “sourcing plays a vital role in any company, and I would even say that sourcing is the start point of any crucial or regular project. Every day, I face a new challenge that keeps me on my toes, and probably that’s why our department is sometimes looked at as a problem-solving department”. But Sourcing is a department always on the move and the right place for the ones that never take things for granted. “Being a curious person, this profile helps me explore more and more in every possible area I could think of. This area teaches you how to build relations as well.”, says Neelam.
Neelam, you have been in the company for almost ten years. How was the journey until now with Trimco/A-TEX?
Neelam: I can’t even express it in words, but it has been a fantastic journey I could have never imagined. After being in the broadcast industry for 2-3 years, I decided to join A-TEX, today part of Trimco Group. When I joined the company 9-10 years ago, I was completely green in the garment trims and accessories industry. However, just a few months after I started, I enjoyed it so much that I knew I had finally found my calling. I believe that we are shaped by the people we meet, and everyone around me helped me become the person I am today. A-TEX (now Trimco) gave me a platform where I learned about developing new products and relations. I received tremendous support from Jainiti Singh (Our India Office MD) and, of course, my colleagues.
What did you learn from broadcasting that you can now use in your life and current position?
Neelam: My first job in the broadcasting industry was fascinating, but more importantly, it offered me the opportunity to reflect on the kind of environment and people, I want to focus on. I learned to focus on the positive rather than the negative which often helps turn the situation around. I left because I was wanted to work in a multicultural environment more closely and A-TEX (Trimco Group) was a good fit in that way – a good group of diverse people, a growth-oriented approach, where learning was the rule rather than the exception.
What do you like about working in the textile and fashion industry?
Neelam: The textile and fashion industry is at a crossroads in adopting sustainable fashion at a mass scale, which defines the elements that make up what is considered “sustainable“ and I am happy to be part of this industry at this critical point.
Neelam took the experience at A-TEX as a new beginning and an opportunity to start over and grow into the confident professional she is today, putting value in all her great personality and trading self-doubt with self-confidence.
“A journey of a thousand miles journey begins with one step”
Sustainability is something we work with and hear often, but what does it mean for you?
Neelam: Sustainability involves being self-aware of your choices and how they connect with the values you hold dear to yourself. Just like fashion is a matter of preference, so is the idea of sustainability — one size does not fit all. Instead, to me, sustainability is about digging deep inside, and connecting it with the way you want to live your life — where you want to have a positive impact, and then going unwavering in that direction.
What would you say is your most significant achievement if you had to choose?
Neelam: I believe that achievements are transient by nature because, with achievement, new goals and challenges come along. If I had to choose, I would say that my most significant achievement has been the ability to learn a whole new topic (sourcing and textiles) and develop expertise in it.
Who inspires you?
Neelam: Personally, my Mother 😊. She is 72 years old and a homemaker. She inspires strength and confidence. By instilling in me that talent can always be trumped through hard work and grit. She treats others with the utmost respect and expects the same in return. She is my biggest supporter and advocate. And because is an important part of our lives, professionally I want to mention Jainiti Singh (Our India office MD), who helped me build my skill set. I am grateful to have these people around me.
A multicultural workplace
With over 1700 colleagues worldwide, communication is not always an easy task, but great things can also come out of it. “Interaction with teammates from different parts of the world reminds me every day that communication and understanding take time and work, and results are often incredible. I am fortunate to be part of a multicultural team that pushes me to put in the effort to be more respectable and understanding.”, mentions Neelam.
To end with, do you have a favorite quote or mantra that guides you through everything you do that you can share with us?
Neelam: A journey of a thousand miles journey begins with one step.