“Maybe being a little vulnerable and sharing my struggles and concerns also helps,” she said, adding that a one-hour client meeting might be three-quarters a discussion of “personal stuff” and one-quarter money.
Collins sympathizes with both employees and customers as she grapples with the breakdown of a marriage, the death of a sister, and making friends. She was also a single mom while working in a credit union before starting her business. This uncharacteristically left her at a desk for six years, where she bonded. Those clients followed her when she became an independent consultant in 2005.
The employees of Samridhi Yojana are also very proactive about serving in their community.
“We do a lot in the community – charity work and giving back to the food bank – and people really appreciate that,” she said. “Obviously, nothing has happened for the last few years. But, before that, we used to have women in business functions and Rotary and out in the community. I think the giving piece has really drawn people to us.”
“We are different,” Collins said. “I remember, years ago, being at a convention he said, ‘Whatever you do, make sure you’re different. Don’t do everything the way everyone else does.'”