Our first doer this year is an RJ turned entrepreneur. She left the glamorous world of radio to pursue her passion for entrepreneurship. Formally known as RJ Aditi, how Aditi Raval is now all set to launch her own company. How she tackled with all the criticism and depression in life? Aditi Raval talks her heart out in an interview with BuddyBits. Presenting an extract of our conversation with the Doer Aditi Raval.
How does your childhood look like?
I used to be a sports keeda in my school days. I took admission into R.J. Tibrewal Commerce College on the basis of sports. I used to be the captain of volleyball team of my college. Apart from that, I’ve also done a lot of fashion shows and dance shows in college. I’ve choreographed fashion shows, dance, and have also done modeling. I have always been passionate about art.
Also, I have this weird belief of earning everything on my own. I used to help my dad in exchange of pocket money. My dad is into cotton business. When I was in fifth- sixth standard, I used to go with him to our village and help him during my vacations. In exchange of that work, he bought me my first bicycle. Even today, I own a car which is bought by the money I’ve earned.
How did the Radio happen to you?
I was just finished with my B.Com. third year exams and this opportunity came to me. My friend’s mom told me that Divya Bhaskar is hunting for new RJs for their brand new radio channel. So I thought to give it a try. I went to the audition with my friend and fortunately, I got selected after qualifying in all three rounds.
How was your journey as an RJ?
My journey as an RJ has been experimental. When I started my career as an RJ, I used to think myself as a square peg in the round hole. As everyone around me was qualified. Some of them had a background of working with movies; some of them were journalism graduates. Technically, only I was not qualified for the job of RJ.
I wasn’t even selected as an RJ in the beginning. I was assigned the work of an outdoor broadcaster. My work was just to go to the field and record stuff. I didn’t have a prime time show when I joined in 2007. But after the ten days of training in Jaipur, I was asked to do morning show. After two weeks they transferred me to the evening show. So from 2007 to 2015, I did evening shows. They selected me for the OB jock, and then promoted me to the prime time show. I have also worked as a regional backup music manager, producer, regional social media manager, sound producer, film reviewer and infotainer.
One day, a flutist came to studio. I was so mesmerized with his music that I didn’t realize he was blind. That’s when I realized the power of radio. The way radio connects with these specially abled people, no other medium can connect. My journey as an RJ has been amazing.
Why did you leave radio?
I didn’t want to leave RJing. I used to plan social media strategies for shows and campaigns of my radio channel as a side duty to RJing. I wanted to learn more about social media marketing. But it is not possible for a prime time RJ to take a leave for longer period. People forget you once you are off the radio for several days. So if you want to keep your fan-base intact, you must maintain consistency.
I wanted personal growth. So I asked for sabbatical. But it was not allowed as per the policy. So I had to leave RJing after 8 years long journey, to move ahead in life.
What are you doing right now?
I am working as an independent social media and brand consultant and creative adviser for entertainment industry. But I am planning to launch a private limited company which will help people with branding and social media promotions. Everything is under production; the company will be launched in a year.
I am so passionate about Gujarati film industry. So I try to help them with promotions. Gujarati film industry is going through the revolutionary phase. I believe, Gujarati cinema will be as mainstream as Hindi cinema is today in Gujarat. So I am trying to give my best to be the part of this revolution. Apart from Gujarati films, I have also been associated with many bollywood films for promotions.
As soon as I left the radio, I organized very first selfie workshop of India. It was a huge success. Now this has become the trend in India. I’m glad that I was the one to bring this in India. We recently did a #ShowcaseUttarayan campaign. This was the first time when a regional festival was promoted on the international level. Many renowned celebrities and mainstream media supported the campaign. I also interviewed Nihal Bitla who is suffering from Progeria. Later he got a chance to meet Aamir Khan.
So I keep doing creative stuff. Next, I am planning to celebrate my birthday with fans.
You seem to be a happy go lucky person. Is there any darker side of your life that you would like to share?
When you are sad and broken, you try to make everyone around you laugh; just so that they don’t go through same feelings that you have gone through. Hence I try to keep smiling no matter what I go through in my personal life.
Everyone goes through this phase in their lives. I went into depression sometimes back due to personal issues. It was very hard time for me. I invested right time into wrong things. When I had to listen to my mind, I followed my heart. And I guess that was a silly mistake at that point of time.
So how did you come out of that phase?
When I was going through that phase, I started spending more time with friends and family. I spent more time on myself. I used to look into lives of underprivileged and those who are not as fortunate as we are. When I see them struggling, I thank god for the life I have been blessed with. My worries are nothing in front of these people who have to struggle every moment of their lives. And that’s what I would suggest people to do. When you are going through tough times in your life, just look into the lives of disabled and underprivileged.
What is failure according to you?
Definition of failure is different for everyone. When I sit and talk with my brother, he reminds me how I am not in a relationship; and how I have been a failure on this part. But then I tell him, I have never given importance to such relationships; and how I always put career ahead of everything. As Einstein has rightly said, you shouldn’t judge a fish by its ability to climb the tree; I believe failure should not be measured on the same parameters for everyone.
Have you been criticized badly for something? What’s your view on criticism?
I generally review movies. Even when I was on the radio, I used to review movies. And when I used to give negative reviews, my radio head used to get calls from distributors to change those reviews. They even offer money to do so. But my radio head has never forced me to change my reviews.
I reviewed five Gujarati films in last one year. I didn’t like three of them. I was criticized for giving negative reviews. Some people even tried to harm my image. But I will keep sharing unbiased reviews as I feel that will really help industry to grow.
Criticism on the whole is a good thing. You can never learn from praises and appreciations. But you can always learn from criticism. So I am always open for criticism.
Which is the most memorable moment of your life?
When board exams of 10th and 12th were going on, I received a call from a father. Generally, parents shut down all media (television, newspapers, etc) to keep their children away from distractions during exams. He said, I have allowed my daughter to listen to you just for an hour. Please encourage her to score above 90 percent in her exams. So I said, she will score more than 90, don’t worry. And we aired that clip on my show. His daughter was very happy. When results were announced, that girl came to our studio with her father directly from the school. She had scored 94 percentile. They both were so happy. This was certainly the most memorable moment of my life.
What message would you like to convey to our readers?
If you really want to achieve something, don’t think twice. Just start working towards it. Whatever you wish to achieve in your life at any point of time, you can achieve it. Age never matters. Your will to achieve your goals and your hard-work is all that counts.
What do you think about BuddyBits?
I think BuddyBits is really doing nice. I am proud of the fact that even Gujarat can produce such kind of platform. And what I like the most about BuddyBits is that your content keeps changing with time. All the best to entire team.
Thank you so much Aditi for your words. I’m sure your work will inspire a lot of people to do something good in their lives. We wish you all the best for all your future endeavors.