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How did brand Shahnaz Husain cope up with the challenges during Covid Times?

By Shahnaz Husain

The Covid-19 health crisis threw the entire world out of gear. In fact, the situation was totally unprecedented. For decades now, I have had such busy schedules! But, due to the lockdown, our offices were closed and employees were working from home. Before closing our offices, I emailed a circular to all our employees, telling them about the basic precautions they must take, washing hands, using hand sanitizers, maintaining social distance and staying at home.

When you are running your own enterprise, you also become aware of the need to deal with the obvious economic crisis that is bound to follow, with factories closed and work at a standstill. I kept wondering how to get things moving. I knew that my biggest challenge was encouraging team work. With employees working from home, the team was distributed. But, fortunately for video conferencing and applications like Skype and Zoom, things worked out better than expected. And of course, the one thing I have realized is the value of human contact.

One aspect of running the organization during Covid and the lockdown was to be in touch with our customers through social media and through our website. We answered questions from customers on beauty problems and suggested solutions online. We highlighted our Hand Sanitizers and soaps. In fact, during Covid-19, we also launched our Germ Fight Series, with products like hand washes, herbal hand sanitizer, germicidal soap, face wash, hand moisturizers, Chyawanprash, etc., all containing herbal germicidal and antiseptic ingredients and with affordable prices, so that they could be available to all. Fortunately, the internet helped our business, with online sales and e-commerce doing well.

Neem Turmeric Soap

The negative effects were more pronounced where the beauty salon and spa services are concerned. Salons opened in a controlled environment and Covid protocols had to be put in place. New methods of working and interacting with customers were adopted. As we all know, in dealing with the coronavirus pandemic, hygiene is paramount. The premises are being fumigated and sanitized two or three times in the day, in-between treatments. Methods are being strictly followed, like washing of hands and use of hand sanitizers. The beauty therapists, hairstylists and all salon staff are wearing PPE suits, disposable aprons, masks, shields and gloves.

As India continued to battle the Coronavirus, I remained committed to social causes by distributing the most essential things. My in-house tailor was busy making hundreds of cloth masks that became life-saving and also mandatory. They were sent for distribution to a village near Delhi, where we have our herb and flower farm and also our R&D facilities. We also distributed hand sanitizers, soaps and food packets to the needy.  

What is new and special during the coming year?

As far as our future plans are concerned, we will be focusing on Exports, Franchising and Product Innovation. We have already resumed exports that had slowed down during the pandemic. We plan to take Ayurveda and Brand India to more cities and countries through franchising too.  As always, we will be launching new products and innovations. We are adding to our Germ Fight Series with Neem-Amla-Brahmi Germ Protecting Hair Cleanser and Hair Oil. We are also launching our Glow One Natural Glow Cream for Men. Also on the cards is the Premium Range of our fast moving products, like Shalife Premium Nourishing Cream, Shatone Premium herbal hair tonic, Sharose Premium skin tonic and so on.

The beauty industry has proved to be resilient in the past and will continue to be so. Beauty care will never go out of fashion!

About Shahnaz Husain

 Shahnaz Husain, pioneer of the Ayurvedic beauty movement, heads the Shahnaz Husain Group, with a global network of franchise ventures and 375 Ayurvedic formulations. A Case Study at Harvard for Brand Creation, she is now a Harvard Subject for “Emerging Markets” She was honoured with the Padma Shri Award and is the first woman in 105 years to receive the World’s Greatest Woman Entrepreneur Award from Success, the U.S. business magazine. Indeed, Shahnaz Husain is a leading international beauty icon.

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