WOW | People

Be your own Boss

Smriti Thapa Khatri

CEO, DesignO studio
Nature of business: Interior Design and Consulting


Smriti Thapa Khatri was a management student with a strong interest in interior design. With the support of her husband, she completed a course in the subject and started business with a fellow classmate. The duo established their firm DesignO Interiors eight year backs but only opened an outlet (DesignO Studio) a year ago.

Initial investment

Starting from a small room in my husband’s office, we initially invested Rs 5-10 lakhs. We continued to invest as we got more projects. Gradually, we started dealing with big companies.

Being your own boss

Travelling and meeting different people is always fun. Besides that, I am in a business of a dynamic nature which compels me to upgrade myself constantly. Therefore, I check out newly opened movie theatres or restaurants in order to learn the new trends. It helps me broaden my creativity.

Being a woman boss

Being a woman boss gets a lot of attention and with attention come doubts in one’s abilities and dedication. Dealing with clients, vendors and labour can be a hassle. Some have even questioned if I would be able to work on holidays being a woman with household responsibilities. I have had to convince them about my dedication and commitment to work.

Are you a risk taker?

Yes. I have been very lucky with my gut decisions. The showroom is also an outcome of a risk which luckily did workout well despite all the hurdles.

How do you charge yourself when you are low?

Spending quality time with my husband and my daughter recharges me.

What is your look for power dressing for meetings and on regular days?

I prefer earthy colours for formal wear. In business, one has to dress up accordingly. Your dressing-up reflects your personality.