A Day in the Life of...a young entrepreneur and professional dancer

Nileeka Bose is the Creative Director / Founder of The Bollywood Co. Nileeka has been shortlisted for The Asian Woman of Achievement (Arts & Culture) 2013 and has been the winner of The Asian Achievers Award (Arts Media & Culture) 2012. Nileeka graduated in 2009 with an LLB from The University of Warwick and was part way through her LPC studies when she decided to dedicate her life to dancing full-time.

The balance between her studies and dance was becoming increasingly difficult. It soon became clear what she was really passionate about. Nileeka also realised she was making more income than she expected through dancing, so she thought perhaps there was something more to it. She started to see her future in dance, events & entertainment. She took the brave step to leave her prestigious legal studies/career and focused on building a business.

After spending 3 years in business with a partner, Nileeka decided to go it alone with The Bollywood Co so that she could realise her own vision of what a professional full-service Bollywood dance company should be.

Nileeka is currently an Instructor at Pineapple Studios and Danceworks. She also manages a team of 18 professional dancers who represent The Bollywood Co at various events all over the country.

Nileeka is an astoundingly young entrepreneur at 26 years old and happily married to her husband David. We, at Buqa Woman are keen to discover how she spends her day...

Tuesday 8th July 2014

10.30am - Breakfast at home whilst I read and respond to emails sent overnight. I start my mornings fairly late, as my nights tend to be very late too.

I reply to everything in the inbox (usually 10-12 enquiries) and respond to every potential phone call lead - no contact is wasted!

My breakfast usually consists of a latte, a banana, yoghurt and maybe a slice of wholegrain toast. It takes me about an hour to get through the various components of my breakfast, as I’m always multitasking along the way.

12 pm - I leave the house to run a variety of personal & business errands. Banking, eyebrow threading, nails, laundry – you name it, I am the midday wonder! Each week I give myself a window of around 3 hours to get this all done.

I have to cash in all the money from my classes & cheques sent by clients. I then have to systematically tally up the money in with the client invoices, which is fairly arduous, but has to be done all the same.

The beauty stuff is not always fun! I am however aware that I have to look good as part of my job as I can’t turn up to a performance with dirty nails or overgrown eyebrows.

1pm – I receive an interesting call about a potential Festival appearance. The agency needs a quick turnaround as they are presenting to their client this afternoon, so I rush home to send them a quick email brief of what we do. I already have a template, but it is not good enough for a job this big, so I spend a little extra time tweaking until it is perfect. Fingers crossed it pays off. I quickly change into a smart dress & heels for my meeting in town.

1.30pm - Heels fail me on the walk…I give in and take a cab.

2pm - Site visit at One Mayfair. We have a wedding performance coming up in the next 2 weeks, so I am here to meet all the suppliers working on the event. We do a walk through of the event in full and I get to meet some great new contacts! Business cards are flying out of my wallet like a shot. Everyone is really friendly and I am comfortable the event will run without a glitch.

4.30pm – More emails have come through. I am still out and about so I find a Starbucks and reply to everything on my phone over a snack before class. Some clients are ready to book so handover to my Assistant Manager, Priyanka, who is able to process the booking form quickly whilst I prepare for the rest of my evening. Time to change into my teaching uniform and glam up a little and run through the routine that I will be teaching later.

6.55pm – Amazing news! We got the booking I pitched for earlier in the day. The client loved it and they want to book us. The budget has increased so they want to book more dancers. Quick call to Priyanka to iron out the details, and then phone goes on airplane mode!

7pm – Phone off. It’s time for class! This week I’m teaching ‘Malang’ from the Film Dhoom 3. There are around 28 people at class, so it is a good week. Lots of familiar faces and happy to be getting some intense exercise myself! 20 minute cardio and straight into the routine. Loving the vibe today.

8.30pm – I am home! Ready for a late dinner – tonight it’s fresh egg pasta with asparagus, pancetta and grated parmesan. I have a smaller portion as I am eating late! Thankfully my hubby has waited for me so I have a buddy to eat with.

9pm – Time for some TV and quality time with my husband until he sleeps. He is on early shift so that means he’s up at 6am. Banking hours are not fun.

11.15pm - Emails again. I retire to my office to send out five Hen Party call sheets to my instructors for all the hens coming up this weekend. Hen sheets done, next on to Event call sheets – there’s only two, thank goodness, a wedding reception and a themed 50th party, both in Central London.

12pm – My motivation is now failing me. I compromise by turning on the TV and have it play in the background while I continue to work. I have three clients left to send contracts & invoices to today. I WILL GET THROUGH THIS.

2am – All work done. My bedtime.

Buqa Woman: what would your advice to be to other women and entrepreneurs?

Nileeka: Don’t give up on something that appears difficult. Only give up on something that doesn’t make sense. If it makes sense, you can do it, no matter how long it takes.

Be motivated and continually set yourself short-term goals. The bigger picture is your lifestyle and how you see your future. If your short-term goals and your long-term lifestyle don’t match up, you’ll never be satisfied, even when you achieve what you set out to do.

Buqa Woman: What is your definition of true beauty?

Nileeka: To me, beauty is a balance of qualities, not a vision.

Beauty is someone who embraces their natural self, accentuates their features and smiles generously. This person gives confidence through compliments but expects nothing in return. Remains self-assured, brave and polite, all at the same time!

You can catch one of Nileeka’s classes at Pineapple Studios- Covent Garden or Danceworks- Marble Arch. For further information about Nileeka’s company and events queries please visit: www.TheBollywoodCo.com / www.Nileeka.com