Aurora Magazine

Promoting excellence in advertising

Styling Success

A day in the life of Ibrahim Shaukat, CEO, Dari Mooch.
Updated 19 Dec, 2023 05:23pm

To alleviate the fast-paced demands of life, the pressures of my business and the relentless need to be on top of all the complexities that arise from it, I try to follow a wholesome morning routine. 

After an early six a.m. wake up call, I head to the gym for an hour, which enables me to prioritise my well-being through a self-care-centred approach to jump-start my day. Upon fulfilling the demands of my body, I extend my self-care approach to grounding my mind by engaging in a 20-minute meditation session, and then centring my thoughts via a five-minute session of journalling. I list three things I am thankful for, envision what will make my day great and note down the actions needed to enhance my life.

After these rigorous exercises for body and mind, I need a snack –  after which my day officially begins at nine a.m. During my 15 to 20-minute drive to work, I catch up with close friends on the phone, with rap music from my car’s radio inducing upbeat, positive energy in the background.

The first hour at work is dedicated to what I call ‘Top Goals Time’ – outlining critical tasks that demand immediate attention and often include reviewing contracts, considering potential hires and other essential matters that may arise. Thanks to the ‘Top Goal’ hour, the workday begins on a note of productivity and success, equipping me for the plethora of meetings that follow, be they with consultants or department heads – and strong communication is a crucial business mantra at the core of our company structure. Holding bi-weekly meetings with my leadership team allows everyone to maintain the well-being and motivational mindsets of over 40 employees.

As the CEO, the importance of my role lies in being able to optimise my teams’ performances, and this is achieved by seeking their input and entrusting them with decision-making responsibilities. I strive to maintain personal connections with all my employees, using an open-door policy to bolster their engagement with the company’s goals and openly discuss all concerns. I believe that the growth of my business is inherently connected to the personal growth, learning and satisfaction of the employees that constitute the business. 

Just like my day, I structure my week according to a specific focus. Tuesdays and Wednesdays are reserved for internal meetings with teams like e-commerce, finance, business development and sales. Mondays and Thursdays are dedicated to dealing with external stakeholders and Friday marks the end of the work week as we reflect on the week’s progress. These meetings revolve around achieving targets, setting key performance indicators, comparing them with past achievements and addressing any setbacks. 

However, even though I am constantly on the go, I make an active effort to have some quiet time and to actually experience boredom. I find this valuable as it allows me some time for self-reflection and which is why I make an active effort to embrace it.

I allocate a portion of my time to cultivating innovative thinking, expanding the boundaries of creativity and steering the business in the right direction. In the pursuit of business opportunities, we seek partnerships with brands whose objectives align with ours. Given our presence in the male grooming industry, we continually work to expand our product range, which comprises shampoos, facewashes, creams and hair-styling products. On that note, we have several negotiations in the pipeline that will potentially elevate our business to the next level. As of late, I have been focusing on our joint venture with Phillips, a demanding collaboration which entails the exclusive sale of Phillips trimmers on Dari Mooch. Ever since its inception in 2017, Dari Mooch has consistently focused on ensuring widespread accessibility of its products and our items are conveniently available in salons, retail outlets and online.

In sustaining our communication mantra, I conduct regular meetings with our in-house creative team who is responsible for devising our advertising campaigns. Remember all the morning self-care? Well, that forms the basis of our brand. The lack of local grooming products for men in the market hindered my goal to look and therefore feel good – and this was the case for many men. Then, voilà, enter Dari Mooch. Our products also attract female buyers, interested in our gift packs for men as well as our keratin shampoos, facewashes and oils for themselves.

I attempt to carve out a one-hour lunch break during which I often engage with colleagues through board games and relaxation-centred activities – although time constraints can leave me with less than half an hour to spare for a break. I try to keep lunch ‘appointments’ with family and friends at least once or twice a week; they give me a much-needed escape from work-related pressures, allowing me to unwind and recharge. 

Speaking of recharging, I rely on coffee to keep me going during the day. The second half of my workday entails more meetings and a deep dive into reviewing sales figures and related matters. My goal is to wrap up work by six p.m., but let’s be honest, it doesn’t always happen. However, once I am off the clock, I enjoy having dinner with friends or relatives, particularly because I live alone in Lahore. Occasionally, I unwind with a swim followed by a soak in the Jacuzzi before heading home. My ideal bedtime is around 11 p.m., although every now and then I hit the sack closer to midnight. 

As my family lives in Faisalabad, my life and work span both cities and sometimes the post-work routine undergoes a slight shift. When homesickness strikes, I go to Faisalabad to be with my family and work from there. The silver lining is my penchant for travel and exploration, which keeps me on the move. However, even though I am constantly on the go, I make an active effort to have some quiet time and to actually experience boredom. I find this valuable as it allows me some time for self-reflection and which is why I make an active effort to embrace it. 

Ibrahim Shaukat is CEO, Dari Mooch.
As told to Uzma Khateeb-Nawaz.