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Stick To Your Ambitions

Listen to this episode here: Stick To Your Ambitions

Welcome to our blog series of Angel Investors Access. Here is a summary of our conversation with Dr. Padma Gadiya, the founder and CEO of Smilo.ai, and also an angel investor. 

A Typical Day

A typical day in Padma’s life varies depending on the day of the week. On weekdays, her day starts at 6.30 am, and she likes to work from her office. She has her daily 10-minute meditation every day, gets her children ready for school, and gets started with her work, usually starting from 9 in the morning. Nowadays, she is also having a lot of Zoom classes across the world.

To help balance her work life, she makes sure that her workday stops at 2.30 to 3.30 pm and resumes it back by 6 pm, if necessary. Her Mondays and Fridays are really busy with a dental practice and business tasks consolidation.

A Story behind Smilo

During the first six months of Smilo, Padma tried to get prepared and learn about everything related to the business, starting from the marketing, development, pricing model, and so on. Now she has learned to prioritise and focus on the implementation and getting real-life feedback and rely on her team to take care of marketing and sales.

Being “a naive Indian girl from a small town”, she just followed her husband with modest dreams. However, a life-threatening accident in 2017 changed things. Her perspective on life has changed and she realised who she was as a dentist. This impact-driven motivation led her to her passion and she was determined to help their clients to have a much happier life – and that’s the story behind her own business Smilo.

Best and Worst Advice

Padma says that the best advice for any business is to keep your ears open to your customers’ feedback. She got it from her father and found it crucial for running a successful business.

The worst advice she received, often from her traditional family and relatives, is that as a mother, she should not be doing business, as it could affect her children. She asks women not to be worried about such comments. Be strong and do whatever you need to do.

Recent Reading and Learning

She thinks knowing one’s own strengths and weaknesses is essential, and she is willing to change and make up for her weakness. She also thinks “knowing when to say NO” important when making money-related decisions.

Padma is currently reading a book about Steve Jobs. She finds him quite relatable as she finds herself fighting the battles and keeps trying and not giving up.

As an Angel Investor

As an angel investor, she likes to work with people who have taken the first step into implementing their ideas and have done real work in the same market.

She thinks the biggest challenge for beginner investors and aspiring investors, is the lack of knowledge about angel investing. She believes if there was more available information about how angel investing works and how to keep track of investments, more people would be willing to invest. Her sweet spot of investment per year ranges from 25K to 75K.

She is happy to learn about new startups and founders and get hands-on if the product is related to the healthcare industry. Outside of her industry, Padma likes to take some time to learn about ventures, see how they get traction, and progress.

Padma encourages people interested in building business to get in touch with angel companies/communities. They can help with the required due diligence. She also emphasises the importance of regular feedback and regular reporting.

Watch the interview:

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