Pencil9- Never Needed Funding

Trisheetaa Tej is a writer by profession, an entrepreneur at heart & a clinical nutritionist by choice. The winner of “Advancing the Dignity Of Women Award”, an award given to women doing outstanding work in the field of supporting and helping women entrepreneurs; at the India Leadership Awards 2016; Trisheeta was much applauded for the work she is doing through her startup, Pencil9.

Pencil9 brings work-from-home opportunities to women all over India.

Started in Feb 2013, the company today has 118 women from all walks of life providing content writing– editing–proof reading services to their clients. “We are very proudly associated with Home Makers, newlyweds, new mothers, mother-to-be, professional writers, students and budding writing enthusiasts. Its wonderful to provide opportunities to so many people,” says the womanpreneur.

About The Womanpreneur

While growing up, Trisheetaa had always planned on becoming a doctor but her fate had other plans for her. Tej started working immediately while completing her studies.

“Since I started working at an early age, I realised sooner that I wanted to do what I would really enjoy,”

With her multitasking abilities and innovative ideas, Trisheetaa soon found herself amidst event managers and advertising professionals.

She started up Mystique Mantra – an advertising and event Management company, all by the age of 23, while she was still studying. But the writer inside her never rested.

Pencil9 and Struggles 

I started up Pencil9 half a decade later, and the response was very underwhelming. People did not counter the idea of ‘women with responsibilities working from home’ very well. Neither was my family convinced.

In the middle of struggle to strap and persuade her family, Trisheetaa fell in love & got married. The founders husband supported her immensely in her endeavour to provide flexible work to women. While she was ensuring that women don’t have to compromise on their work due to time constraints/responsibilities, Trisheetaa was sacrificing family time right after marriage to make her Pencil9 a success. She dedicates her accomplishments to her family that always motivates her to do better.

Womanpreneurship  and  Choices

“All through my startup days until today, I have people coming up to me saying – Don’t you think you are overburdening yourself with these initiatives? I came across dozens of employers who lured me with handsome pay packets and at the end, upon turning down the offer, asked me “isn’t a job a better option for a young girl like you”?”

Living in a male dominated society, Trisheetaa comes across experiences like this more often than we think. “I am still unsure about handling such statements/remarks. Its unfortunate to see such mindsets,” says Tej who is doing her bit to make women independent.

The Writing Industry 

Getting into the writing industry, Trisheetaa gives the highest importance to punctuality & flexibility of writers. “If you are not delivering on time, or not open to writing in different domains, it will be tough!” she says.

Competition motives me to work harder and give my best at all times. There is no scope for ignorance and this makes the game even more interesting.

There are a lot of companies that provide services similar to Pencil9, but Trisheetaa ensures that her company stays ahead of the game by chasing  timelines and ensuring quality work. “Clients prefer our work over others because we have defined our brand image. I see a lot of companies providing copied content to the client. If they are looking to receive something that is available online, they can pick it themselves.”

“Also, I always ensure that I take care of my team. I believe that if I am the best employer, then my team will work hard to make Pencil9 the best company,” she says with a smile.

Advice To Entrepreneurs

You will find tons of hurdles in your way, many people to put you down, many people to break your heart and many professional associates who would leave you in the middle of your journey. Stand strong and move ahead because there is no bigger dream than yours!

Trisheetaa bootstrapped Pencil9 and started up with a laptop and a smart phone. She recommends womenpreneurs to try saving money themselves & staying away from unnecessary expenses. “In case you are not looking for a fundraise from VC, you can also look at Crowd funding, Credits from vendors, micro loans and using your Assets,” adds the founder. As a message to womenpreneurs, she says, “Big achievements are possible. You just have to believe in what you are doing.”

We played a rapid fire round with the founder & this is how she fared!

Boring Husband – Turn off

Husband in a different profession – Quite interesting. Lots of learning from different experiences!

3 essentials you cant live without – Phone, Laptop, Handbag

First thing after sex – A kiss on my forehead

Women in India & casual sex – Personally, I don’t approve of it! But, now, casual sex is no big deal in today’s modern India. Many women in urban India prefer the no-strings-attached-sex-life rather than getting into a wedlock with the wrong guy.

Your go-to book – Books by Jeffrey Archer & Sydney Sheldon

Love at first sight – A dream come true for me

Personal Blog Corner

Marriage/ Long term commitment – Marriage is a long term commitment of love, loyalty, trust and respect for each other

Nuclear vs Joint Family (your take) – Joint family, I just love to be with people. Celebrate festivals together. Go on vacations and have quality time with everyone. I would want my future kids to enjoy the love, care and lessons from their elders; especially grandparents.

What do you think about visual appeal (How important is it to look good)? – Looks matter but it is more important to be beautiful from within. Visual appeal stays for merely 50 milliseconds but it is the personality that creates a lasting impression. So, I would prefer to enhance my innermost appeal first, rather than focusing on my looks.

What should a woman ponder over before deciding to raise a child? – Parenting is the most beautiful feeling in the world. Nevertheless; never force a butterfly out of the cocoon. Your child is gifted and requires time to unwrap the packages.


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