Nisha: I took a leave of absence from practicing law in 2005 after the birth of my second child. After two years, with my first child in school and my second child about to start school, I began to channel my energies towards my personal growth. I knew that returning to my legal career was not an option at this stage. With the help and encouragement of friends and family, I was able to redefine myself for the benefit of me and my children. Since then, I now sit on the Board of the YWCA of Bergen County. I am also on the Board of Ridgewood Newcomers as the YWCA Liaison. And recently, I began volunteering for the American Red Cross of Northern New Jersey.
2.) Do you think you might want to go back to law at some point?
Hana: While I miss the intellectual challenges of practicing law and daily interaction with people, I don’t miss the inherent stress of being a litigator and difficulty of balancing family, work and self. At this point, I don’t see myself going back to it as a career.
Nisha: On an intellectual level, I miss the practice of law. At this point in my life, however, I feel that the demands of the legal world conflict with my commitments as a mother. My drive for learning and strong work ethic has not changed; I have simply diverted these qualities into my children, new business, and civic obligations. I am thankful that I have a law degree that I will always be able to utilize. When my children are older, I would welcome the opportunity to re-enter the legal arena should the right position arise.
Hana: Yes. I have no prior entrepreneurial experience – talk about a major learning curve!
Nisha: Yes. I have always followed a straight and narrow path when it came to my education and career. Little Jet Set is a leap of faith and a labor of “extreme like.”
4.) How does being an entrepreneur compare to being a lawyer?
Hana: The pay sucks (for now)! The biggest difference is that I now have so much more control over my life, and my time. And it’s so nice to be relieved of other people’s problems. Sure, running a business (and not having a regular paycheck) can be stressful, but it is my stress, my deadlines. With only a few exceptions, I have complete control over my work environment, the people I interact with, and the timeframes within which things need to get done.
Nisha: The experience as an entrepreneur is what you create. I have a strong work ethic and perfectionist qualities, so for me the approach I take and the standards I set are the same; the difference now is that I manage how and when I accomplish my goals.