PROJECT - MAW - Moms At Work
Over the summer I had the pleasure of meeting, photographing and interviewing Falguni Lakhani-Adams. She is an Emmy Award-winning producer, writer, wife, and awesome Bad-Ass-Mom of two, living in Venice, CA.
Here is my interview.
Tell me a little about your current job and position.
I'm a TV and video producer; my current project is a hybrid scripted/unscripted series called "Valley of the Boom" created by Matthew Carnahan for Nat Geo TV.
How long have you been doing this?
I've been in the television/documentary business for 17 years and counting.
What attracted you to this career?
In my former life I was an attorney, and I chose that career path with a goal of helping domestic abuse victims. I still think about that path and have worked in other ways towards that goal but for me the legal system wasn’t a great fit. A friend of mine encouraged me to look into broadcast news; I think his exact words were, “I think you could be the next Barbara Walters”. Well, clearly that didn’t happen! But once I got into producing I started to love it and I haven’t looked back.
Is this career path harder for a woman, especially a mother?
I don't believe there is ever a perfect career choice for a parent, mother or father. I think we try so hard to find what we call "balance" but the truth is as a mom I’ve learned to just be more efficient. When I get to a project, I'm hyper-organized, I bang it out and I go home to be with my kids. I try not to answer work emails or calls during the few hours I have with my kids before bed. Most of my bosses and managers have been supportive but I made sure to set my own boundaries. When I was a new mom, I was always so paranoid and never said no to anything. I would say I've learned that when you are doing good work, people appreciate it, even if you have to sometimes say, “No, I’m not available this weekend.”
How old are your children and are they supportive of what you do?
I have two enthusiastic children, a delightful young boy who is 8 and a 5-year old daughter. I try to discuss what I am working on with my kids so that they feel a level of attachment to the outcome of my work. They are very supportive.
How do you balance your job and your family and find time for your career and what are your biggest challenges?
I'm not certain I'm ever really balancing anything that well but I try to give the breadth of my love and passion to everything I do. When I'm with my family they know and feel my energy with them and when I'm at work I try to give my all as well. I think one of the biggest challenges for women is to not be so hard on themselves when trying to find "balance" with their career and their family. My husband is an equal partner in parenting and that helps a great deal. My husband is my greatest champion and support. He's a true partner in every sense of the word and a great parent, spouse and friend.
If you weren't a producer, what do you think you would be doing?
I would probably be working for the United Nations as a diplomat or open an eclectic store on Abbott Kinney, or maybe become a psychic. ;)
Do you have a mantra or saying that helps you get through tough times?
Yes, I tell myself everyday that I have the Midas touch and everything I touch turns to gold.
What are your future goals?
I hope to continue to excel in my career but would love to circle back to my initial career goals to support the women in my community who don’t have the resources or freedom to stand up for themselves. I believe that when women like me can take our knowledge and apply it with heart and feelings, we can achieve real change. I hope to continue to be a force in the lives of young women and help them achieve their goals and grow with confidence and support.