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Meet Megha Hamal of Megha Hamal PR & Branding in Andersonville

Today we’d like to introduce you to Megha Hamal.

Megha, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
My entrepreneurial journey began when I took a leap of faith to launch my own public relations brand. Mustering the courage to dive into the unknown wasn’t necessarily a new thing for me, as I immigrated to the U.S. as a young Nepali woman to begin my higher education. In 2003, when I was age 19, I left Kathmandu – a city of about 1 million – and immigrated to Hesston, a town in Kansas of approximately 3,000 people. At the time, Nepal was going through a civil conflict and the schools and colleges were on the brink of closing. I knew I was taking a huge risk-leaving my family behind and diving into the unknown.

Before KS, I had never heard of Tornadoes, The Wizard of Oz, or Corndogs. I had to learn everything on my own, make mistakes and learn again. After getting my undergraduate and graduate degrees in Communication, I entered the government sector and worked in the press office of the Illinois Department of Transportation for seven years. My next job as the spokesperson for the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund (IMRF), second largest pension fund in Illinois brought me to Chicago, where I worked with local and national media, such as Chicago Tribune, Sun-Times, Pensions & Investments, WSJ, to place pension stories on behalf of IMRF. After working in the government sector for more than eight years, I decided to enter the private sector. The last three years of my career were spent managing public relations for a healthcare institution, under the umbrella of Adtalem Global Education, leading global education provider for degree and non-degree seeking students around the world.

This summer, I finally took the leap of faith to start my own company. Even though I found success in my corporate job, I felt like I wasn’t growing as an individual and the opportunities were limiting. I wanted to carve out my own path and start a company. When I embarked on my journey as an entrepreneur, I asked myself: What is it that I want from this experience? What is the end goal? I thought through this question and came to the realization that social recognition and the financial aspect were smaller pieces of the puzzle. The big piece for me was empowering women like myself who immigrated to the U.S. with a dream.

Today, my PR and branding boutique firm, based in Chicago, works in a wide range of categories including lifestyle, restaurants, healthcare, technology and everything in between.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Part of being an entrepreneur and operating your own company involves a lot of hard work, dedication and focus. You have to be comfortable with the idea of being uncomfortable. Once you embrace the notion that being uncomfortable is okay, you can move past your anxiety and diversify your experiences. As an entrepreneur, you’re learning curve is steep. I am learning every day and it can be frustrating sometimes, but I constantly remind myself why I chose this path and the legacy I want to leave behind. You have to be optimistic but realistic at the same time.

Megha Hamal PR & Branding – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Megha Hamal PR & Branding, LLC is a Chicago-based boutique firm that works in a wide range of categories including lifestyle, restaurants, healthcare, technology and everything in between. We are passionate about storytelling and helping brands get their stories out to the right audience.

My company works with clients on website development, publicity/PR, message development for your brand, social media management and consulting, influencer marketing. We work with our clients closely from start to finish while meeting our clients’ unique needs and business goals.

As a founder and CEO of my company, I focus on getting results. I have diverse sector experience, which helps me to assess our clients’ needs based on the industry they represent. Getting results is important and I run my businesses with authenticity as the cornerstone of my business and my personal life. Based on my core value, I have set the foundation of my company. And, I conduct my business based on this core value. I believe in building long-term relationships with my clients. If I can help them tell their stories in the most engaging and authentic manner, I know I have done my job right.

What is “success” or “successful” for you?
For me, taking the entrepreneurial journey was about leaving behind a legacy, a footprint. We often think of a “legacy” as something grand. To me, it is simply the notion of making decisions and choices that my future self would be proud of. When I embarked on my journey as an entrepreneur, I asked myself: What is it that I want from this experience? What is the end goal? I thought through this question and came to the realization that social recognition and the financial aspect were smaller pieces of the puzzle. Success to me is about providing value to my clients, mentoring younger women and launching opportunities for the next generation of women entering the field of communications.

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