Priya Telavane: Transforming Spaces to Tell Stories

After working for years across the globe with major design houses and interior fit-out companies, Priya Telavane was ready to bring the change. The impetus being a gap in the market and to bridge the gap in the market between client and contractor, designer, consultants understanding which made projects delays Priya started key to key solution for all interior projects. Being an architect who specialized in interior design it was apt for Priya to start 361dds.

An architect by profession, Priya started her work experience in Bombay with one of the best interior design and fit out firm and visited Germany to learn new design trends in the market. Finally, she landed in Dubai to work with major design houses and interior fit out companies. Constantly learning new trends, styles, and new innovations. While working with an Australian company due to global economic crises she was forced away from work. That difficult time gave her strength and courage to start her own company with all her savings in. Her husband Amol supported the decision and was always there. “Everyone around me suggested to be an interior designer and not do interior fit out as that was male-dominated work. Long working hours on site and dealing with workers every day, work through day and night,” says Priya Telavane, Founder and Managing Partner of 361° Design Solutions (361dds). She, however, took this as a challenge and made it happen. Cutting out the middlemen by managing projects from inception to completion and by putting the focus where it belongs, on the clients, the designs and project delivery, 361dds was born. Since then she has never looked back.

Founded in 2010, Dubai based 361dds since inception is dedicated to its motto to ‘Design with passion and build with excellence’. And 361dds co-founder and Design Director Amol Jadhav, an architect specialized in interior and furniture design makes sure of the quality and uniqueness in all projects they do. They have associate offices in India and Africa.

"Being a leader you need to listen to all and do what is correct. Flexible and with a positive attitude"

Concept to Completion

361dds at its core is an interior design and fit-out company that creates unique spaces that tell the story of their clients, successfully transforming the commercial interiors sector and residential projects with their complete turnkey design, build and design consultancy solution services. Each project is managed completely in-house, to ensure they both manage and deliver their clients expectations. With a particular focus on budget and timescales, the company also ensures that they meet both regulatory and quality standards both prior, during and following the project completion. But it doesn’t stop there. 361° design solutions after-handover service further gives their clients peace of mind. Till date, they have worked in sectors namely like government, hospitality, healthcare, food and beverage sector, educational, corporate offices, retail stores in malls, and residential successfully.

Priya is also a member of several business organizations, including Dubai Business Woman Council, Soroptimist International, the Society of Engineers, and the Business Network International Women’s Group. Priya has also been recognized for her strong business acumen whilst her passion, dedication and determination helped her win awards like Young Women Entrepreneur award 2016, Women Business Excellence award 2018 as well as in 2019, Pioneer in Women Leadership award, Middle East women leadership award 2018, Asia one best leadership award GCC 2019, Asia One big brands award GCC for 361dds (best design studio) and now she is one of the finalists for Business International award in Dubai 2019.

She earned these achievements through one striking quality that everyone will agree is extremely critical for all leaders: being a good listener. “Being a leader you need to listen to all and do what is correct. Flexible and with a positive attitude,” says Telavane, “Though you can’t make everyone happy so keep working towards your goal”. And by bringing together people in the team who have a positive and learning attitude, are innovative, and most importantly those who can demonstrate solid work commitment. She is a strong advocate of no self-pity and never laid any particular strategies exclusively just for women. Consecutively the culture of the organization has never been one favoring any particular gender, culture, or nationality. “I never had any,” says Telavane elucidating her philosophy, “I always believe if you are talented, committed and hardworking things follow in your place.” Hence rather than looking into the gender of a person she prefers to look for people best suited for the particular position based on their talent and experience. This is because she considers women are equal and no less than anyone. Indeed, it’s a perception that turns the tables and limitations exist only in our minds. “It’s all in your head. You need the right attitude and your confidence will make people acknowledge you,” asserts Telavane. Certainly working in a highly competitive industry is not a cakewalk and she admits sometimes experiencing resistance while leading men. However, she remains candid. “For me, success is when we achieve goals set personally as well as professionally all the while taking care of mental, physical health. It’s not a cake walk and I lose many times but with positive friends around and having involved in CSR activities it keeps me going.” Surely no one is immune to business challenges, she expressed, “What makes me smile every day is my 3-year-old son and his small little talks. My meditation is my dance and having a focussed, goal driven inner conscious keeps encouraging me”. She looks at challenges as an opportunity to grow as a person. All the while living each day following ‘DREAM BIG AND WORK TOWARDS IT TO MAKE THEM REALITY’, the statement she follows and believes in.

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Outside work, Priya loves dancing and acting. She is a trained Indian classical dancer and has taken acting film lessons from New York film academy, and few more. She does stage shows and loves learning new things. Innovation is something she likes to follow and implement. She is particular about fitness and training is her routine. To do many things you need strength and that will be only possible if you are fit….stress buster is her dancing moves western, Bollywood, etc.

Blaze the Trail

Priya admits as a woman one has added responsibility to look after kids, take care of the home, manage a social life, keep oneself fit and presentable, and also chive the professional goals. She, however, advise women to never feel overwhelmed about how to manage everything – but just try to find a way. On the professional front: “I would always tell women to do what you are best at and be confident. Take things slowly and don’t run,” says Telavane.

Priya Telavane, Founder & Managing Partner, 361° Design Solutions

“Never lose your feminine side or famine characters which will set you apart from men and men leaders”. As for women looking for leadership position she suggests women to, “Go for it when you are fully prepared (correct education, positive attitude, ready for lows and high). Don’t think it's super easy but it’s not impossible…..You have to put your heart, body, and soul towards it…..goal should be clear,” concludes Telavane.

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