TheGlitz ‘Super Woman’ Divya Momaya, Founder – MentorMyBoard

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Divya Momaya is the Founder of MentorMyBoard, a ‘one of its kind’ start-up providing professional knowledge, tools and framework focused on holistic development of existing and aspiring directors on corporate boards.

Throughout her career as a Company Secretary, Divya has played a pivotal role in advising the Boards in key areas to both – listed and private sector companies under securities, corporate laws, strategy, leadership and corporate governance. Her expertise in consulting owners and corporations encouraged her to build MentorMyBoard.

In 2022, Divya Momaya marked another milestone. Amongst other initiatives, she launched the Women Director’s Conclave which was graced by the Hon’ble Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs, Government of India Nirmala Sitharaman. She won accolades for her exemplary work in secretarial services and for creating an integrated platform for board leaders, mentors and corporates. In addition to this, she also introduced innovative products like ‘WOMB’ ( Women on Management and Boards) for rising women executives on how to be nominated and contribute meaningfully.

Divya Momaya also serves as an Independent director on the boards of GTPL Hathaway Ltd, three companies of Motilal Oswal Group, Blue Jet Healthcare Limited. She is also the Co-Chairperson of IMC Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Navi Mumbai and member of other prestigious organisations contributing for the betterment of trade and industry. An author, consultant and community builder, Divya is a great example of entrepreneurship and a mentor to startups, small and mid-sized companies. Here, Divya Momaya talks to TheGlitz about her momentous milestones and more.

Over to Divya Momaya

Your journey has had many momentous milestones. Could you tell us about the life-changing milestones that have molded you to be what you are today?

My journey unfolds from humble beginnings in Malegaon, a small town, to my current position as an independent director serving on boards with a combined market capitalization of 20,000 Cr. It’s been a path marked by determination, education, and a passion for learning. Leaving Malegaon behind, I pursued my graduation in Pune and acquired management training in Nagpur. Following marriage, I made the move to Mumbai. Education has always been a cornerstone of my life, coupled with a natural ability for quick learning and effective communication.
My professional journey commenced with roles at esteemed corporations such as BSEL Infrastructure Realty Ltd. and the Bombay Stock Exchange. Subsequently, I ventured into practice as a company secretary, initially with just three clients. Over time, I expanded my clientele to over 200 active entities.
In 2017, a pivotal year, I underwent a transformative mentoring process, culminating in the inception of MentorMyBoard (MMB) in 2018. Today, MMB has garnered recognition from esteemed figures like the Finance Minister Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman and Union Cabinet Minister Smt. Smriti Irani. It stands as a movement dedicated to fostering robust and participative boardrooms inclusive of founders, promoters, women, and independent directors.
My roots in a small town instilled in me a deep understanding of the challenges faced by women in leadership, particularly within boardrooms. This led to the creation of WOMB (Women on Management and Boards), a mentorship program launched by Mrs. Sitharaman. Yet, I perceive this as merely the commencement of a larger impact on the governance landscape. From a mere idea, MMB has evolved into a platform influencing over 2300 directors and board aspirants. Amidst this journey, I am blessed with two wonderful teenage daughters, who remain my pride and joy, accommodating my demanding schedule.
None of this would have been possible without the unwavering support of my incredible mother-in-law, father-in-law, and supportive husband, who have stood by me through every twist and turn. Active engagement with communities like JITO, IMC, BNI, and various NGOs has further enriched my network and allowed me to contribute meaningfully to society.

What are the setbacks Divya Momaya has faced? How did you tackle these setbacks or challenges and what lesson have you learned from it?

Life presents us with an array of challenges, serving as the vital threads that weave our journey. Hailing from a small town, I confronted numerous hurdles, from facing ridicule for my vernacular education background to grappling with low pay and scarce opportunities in larger corporations.
The birth of my daughters further intensified the challenges as my corporate role demanded significant time commitments. Despite this, I returned to work merely two months after their arrival, a decision that ultimately led me to relinquish my corporate career after the birth of my second child. It was during this juncture that I contemplated embarking on an entrepreneurial voyage.
With the encouragement of a close acquaintance, I commenced my entrepreneurial journey, initially catering to a modest clientele of three. However, entrepreneurship introduced its own set of obstacles—navigating team dynamics, securing resources, acquiring clients, arranging office space, and balancing familial responsibilities, including the decision to remain with my in-laws while my husband pursued his career elsewhere.
Firmly believing that the most profound lessons stem from confronting life’s toughest challenges, I embraced each obstacle as an opportunity for growth. Opting not to relocate with my husband to China and instead focusing on nurturing my entrepreneurial endeavor stands as a testament to this ethos.
In the face of challenges concerning the expansion and evolution of my venture, I recognized the need for personal development. This realization propelled me to undergo a transformative mentoring process, culminating in the inception of MentorMyBoard (MMB).

When you look back, what are the three qualities in you that have helped you become what you are today?

1. Consistency and Clarity of Vision:
I have cultivated a steadfast practice of journaling, meticulously documenting my thoughts during moments of solitude. This habit serves as a beacon, illuminating the path toward my vision, goals, and life expectations. Whether navigating the challenges of pursuing my education to ultimately achieving the esteemed title of company secretary or birthing the innovative concept of MentorMyBoard, I have remained resolute in my actions. Despite skeptics casting doubt on the relevance of my services to Corporate India, I persevered, leading MentorMyBoard to emerge as a preeminent governance brand. Our triumphs, including being recognized as the best startup by FICCI FLO, India, stand as testament to the power of consistency and clarity of purpose.
• 2. Embracing Opportunities and Challenges:
Instilled with the mantra by my mother to never decline an opportunity without attempting to overcome it, I have embraced a philosophy of openness to all possibilities. This childhood lesson has propelled me to reach for the stars, seizing every opportunity that crosses my path. Continual learning, adaptability, and an insatiable curiosity have propelled me forward, ensuring I stay ahead of the curve in my personal and professional growth journey.
• 3. Unwavering Confidence:
Self-belief has been my steadfast companion, empowering me to forge ahead despite adversities. From nurturing a solitary idea to cultivating MentorMyBoard into a thriving platform, unwavering confidence has been the cornerstone of my journey. Investing resources into an idea deemed challenging to prove and implement was a testament to this deep-rooted faith. Today, as MentorMyBoard thrives, my confidence surges, propelling us toward greater heights of success, not just for ourselves but also for the collective progress of our nation.

Lastly, if there was a quote to define you, what would it be?

Believe in yourself, and the world will believe in you. This conviction resonates deeply with me. When the Finance Minister underscored the necessity of a platform like MentorMyBoard, my belief in this mission was fortified.

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