This 23-Year-Old is Empowering Young Girls Across India, to Follow Their Dreams

Rashmeet Kaur, Co-Founder, Lean In.
Rashmeet Kaur at a Lean In circle in Delhi.

Rashmeet Kaur started a Lean In circle under Indira Gandhi Delhi Technical University for Women (IGDTUW) chapter in the year 2014. For a year, she groomed and trained 10 girls to overcome their internal barriers, take initiatives and ambitiously move towards their newly defined goals.

The job of a leader is to produce more leaders. She recorded a progress video at the end of the first year. Her life changed in 2015 when Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO and founder of Lean In Foundation, shared the video and appreciated the girls for their growth.

The video became viral and there was no turning back for Rashmeet after that.

“Lean In Council at IGDTUW was officially launched on May 1st, 2015 and 300 girls registered for the same. For the next eight months, I led the council as the Vice President and mentored over 200 girls along with Sanya to Lean In, in their lives.”, says Rashmeet.

In October 2015, she launched Lean In Mechanical Engineers, a chapter that promotes women in heavy industry. Under this chapter, Team Panthera was formed which built a Super mileage vehicle over a span of one year. Team Panthera presented and ran its SMV at Eaton Proving Grounds, Marshall, Michigan and were ranked 7th globally in SAE Supermileage Competition 2016.

“Empowered women empower other women. After two years of Leaning In and changing lives, I now co-lead Lean In India with Sanya Khurana”, she says.

It was Sanya who initially introduced her to Lean In at IGDTUW.

“Sheryl Sandberg became an icon for me in freshman year (2012), when I heard the amazing TED talk by her. For the first time my thoughts were given words beautifully. I started Leaning In without the label. As a mechanical engineer, I faced a lot of gender biases – be it in projects, markets or industry. Someone who was close to me claimed, I could not survive the course because I am too sissy for that. I accepted the challenge and started moving towards my goal.”, Rashmeet recounts.

She is currently running the Lean In India Events circle and Lean In Delhi Circle and has recently started the Lean In India Corporate Chapter with the objective to promote Lean In, in corporates in India.

Lean In India Summit
Lean In India Summit Gurgaon 2017

Lean In (Leanin.org) is an online global community of women that aims to promote more and more women to pursue their dreams by breaking their internal barriers. They believe in creating impact through the circles that meet regularly to learn and grow together. Their objective is to run these circles in campuses, community and corporates. Lean In India, is the country chapter for the organisation and Rashmeet happens to be the youngest country lead for any chapter cross the globe.

She is working as an Executive at Honda Cars India Limited, in the Supplier Business Management department and has also published a book on co-dependency of women in interpersonal relations. She writes to bring a change in the mindset of the women to ask for more and not consider themselves as the weaker gender.

“Personally leaning in, now resonates with the way of my living. From building cars, to mentoring over 300 girls, to organizing Lean In India Summit and to designing the models for Lean In India Corporate Circles, I have become a lot more sensitized to the women centric issues. I feel a lot more empowered now as I can dare to dream and take things to the next level. And I have learnt to lead without title. My card read the quote that I believe in, Successful women are not exceptions, they are examples.”

“And I am going to lead this change in India with my example.”, Rashmeet concludes.

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