The way forward for I was a Sari

The way forward for I was a Sari

We started as an experimental project in 2013, then we incorporated a registered company, called 2nd Innings Handicrafts Pvt Ltd in 2016 and now in 2021, we're braving our way through the pandemic. The ride we’ve had so far, is nothing short of an adventure.

The journey so far, as our founder Stefano likes to call, has been serendipitous, as things have happened more like chance encounters, and we’ve managed to find our way forward as we moved along. And then along the way, came the prestigious Stanford SEED program – seemed a bit daunting, more like a back-to-school scenario amidst all the work to start with, but came at the right time and looking back we will definitely feel this what the strategic milestone, that helped us to carve out a better future for our organization.

Amidst the whirlwind of urgent day-to-day job we somewhere never found the time to have conversations at an organization level about the values of the company, we have heard the story of how Stefano started I was a Sari, and also know we work with NGOs and supporting women is one of the most crucial aspects of the business, but we never find time to think about where we want to be and what we need as an organization. Or how much of what the company is about is passed on to the last employee. Never before, the core team of 2nd Innings/I was a Sari sat and discussed about who we are, what our mission and vision is. And what is it that we are trying to achieve.

Stanford Seed partners with entrepreneurs in emerging economies to build thriving enterprises that transform lives. The Seed Transformation Program is a one-year certificate program delivered by Stanford University through Stanford Graduate School of Business .The program selects 60 high potential SME’s and social enterprises out of hundreds of applications,  provides management training, one-on-one support, and networking opportunities to growth-minded business owners and CEOs. There did come glitches due to the pandemic last year, but the entire program was re-modelled into an online format.

The objective of this program is to build a sturdy transformation plan – a holistic and strategic plan that will move the organization from the current state to what we aim to be in the next 3/5 years. After spending many hours over zoom sessions, case study discussions, assignments and deadlines, we are happy to be have come up with our transformation plan.

Some interesting facts and key highlights from our Transformation plan :

We came on a mutually agreed vision and mission statement –

We could define 3 ambitious strategic goals that we want to achieve in the next 3/5 years –

Become the embodiment of sustainability
Sustainability to us has always been threefold – people, planet and profit and we want to keep this approach alive by planning our growth around sustainable objectives that are social, environmental, and financial.We want certifications from third party organization so that we can be transparent, we will start measuring the material circularity so that we can track our improvements. We want to ensure financial sustainability so that we can grow our operations and include more women artisans.

Put people first
The more we discussed our growth plan and what we want to achieve in the coming years, our CEO and co-founder, Stefano realised that our growth has to be driven by each and every stakeholder of the organization, that employees and artisans are to engrain the ethos of the organisation and  we need to create a  “culture” – one where everyone is aligned to the core values of sustainability, mutual respect and passion to create a positive social and environmental impact.

Grow with respect
2nd Innings Handicrafts wants to inspire a new generation of social entrepreneurs, by becoming an acclaimed international case study with steady growth in revenues, launching new brands and adding more women from not so privileged backgrounds to become the architects of their future.

“We aim to become a 400 artisans’ strong organization by 2026”

We are thoroughly excited to make these goals  a reality, and have designed a working transformation plan so that each and every employee can work together to drive this change. And we hope to share progress with all our customers as we start transforming. We still hope serendipity plays a role in our future, but what want to grow and transform by design and planning.

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