Eco-Conscious Entrepreneur Gets Confidence Boost From Her Digital Ready ‘Family’

By: Kathleen Kilpatrick
Feb 5, 2024 9:30 AM ET
Campaign: Acting Responsibly


“We talk about how the entrepreneur’s journey is lonely. Not anymore,” says OMSutra owner Jyoti Jaiswal.

After nearly 17 years running OMSutra, Jyoti Jaiswal knows how to build a sustainable business. In fact, sustainability is at the core of her company, a Long Island-based wholesale and direct-to-consumer business that designs and sells fashion, wellness and home decor products crafted by Indian artisans. “When we are designing any collection, the idea is it is good for the people and planet before profit,” she says.

For Jyoti, sustainability means much more than eco-consciousness, more than just using natural fibers and dyes or implementing a zero-waste policy — both of which she does. Sustainability also means preserving the artisanal craft traditions of India, where she was born and raised. It means ensuring the manufacturers she works with pay fair wages. It means helping to train former victims of sex trafficking to learn new skills, such as stitching and block-printing.

And with the help of Verizon Small Business Digital Ready, Jyoti has found yet another way to make OMSutra thrive, while meeting its sustainability mission: by surrounding herself with a community that can support her through the roadblocks and challenges all entrepreneurs face.

“We talk about how the entrepreneur’s journey is lonely. Not anymore,” Jyoti says. “Because now you get to understand what other business owners are going through. You see it is not only you. From other people’s journeys, you get inspired and motivated.”

Community connections

Jyoti has taken many Verizon Small Business Digital Ready courses, from marketing to content strategy to financial planning. But what she treasures most are the Community Connect events where she and other entrepreneurs meet virtually and dish on whatever they’re going through with their business: challenges they face, questions that arise, problems they’ve solved, tips they want to share.

“The environment is very energetic,” says Jyoti. “For me it is about sharing and caring. When we are sharing about what we are going through or how we are planning, for example, our holiday gift guide — you learn a lot from other entrepreneurs’ perspectives.”

“It’s a safe space where you can share your challenges and it stays within the room,” she adds.

In fact, Jyoti says she found support in the Digital Ready community even during a particularly difficult personal challenge. “I was going through my cancer recovery process [and the Community Connect events and 1:1 sessions with subject matter experts] really helped me,” she says, adding that the meetings were a chance to see familiar faces, as well as meet new people and get inspired. “I also made a nice connection with a few business owners who were going through similar health journeys,” Jyoti says. “You have friends, but those friends may not be business owners. When you find another owner going through the same journey, it’s another story.”

Lifelong learner

In addition to the personal support she’s found through Digital Ready, Jyoti has gleaned plenty of practical business insights from the platform, even though she has an extensive background in business. She previously worked as a project consultant and business advisor and has an MBA in marketing.

“What I’m learning now is so different,” she says, reflecting on how artificial intelligence (AI), digital marketing and social media have upended traditional business practices. “For me, I’m a lifelong student.”

A 1:1 website review with a live coach helped Jyoti revamp the OMSutra website, which previously focused on wholesale distribution. “The website was basically a catalog where people could see the products and reach out to us,” Jyoti explains. “Now we’re trying to grow our direct-to-consumer market.” She estimates OMSutra has increased direct-to-consumer revenue more than 20% since starting with Digital Ready over a year ago.

The Getting Certified: Paths for Minority/Women-Owned Businesses course, meanwhile, started Jyoti on her journey toward Minority and Woman Business Enterprise certification by helping her understand how to apply. She has since been certified for New York City and New York State.

When it comes to growing and scaling her business, Jyoti credits the coaching sessions and insights on developing a competitive analysis with helping her decide to pivot OMSutra to become a luxury gift company. She envisions OMSutra producing more personalized gifts for corporations to give to their executives and employees, for hotels to welcome guests with a personal touch, or for brands to stand out in a swag bag.

Public speaking skills

If she had to pick the shining moment of her Digital Ready journey, Jyoti points to a panel she took part in this fall, during a Verizon-hosted small business summit in New York City. In the past, Jyoti declined such opportunities due to time conflicts or disinterest. But the Digital Ready program had given her so much, she says, that she wanted to give back.

Despite the summit being her first public speaking event, Jyoti found herself speaking freely and comfortably. “There were so many things I wanted to share. That day it sparked something new,” she says. Because of this, she says, she got multiple other public speaking opportunities.

Much of this new confidence was built over a year of participating in Digital Ready courses, coaching sessions and Community Connect events, which Jyoti says helped her become less shy and more comfortable speaking on camera and to groups of people. “The best thing about Digital Ready is you feel you are in a safe space. You feel like part of the family of entrepreneurs,” she says. “It’s an amazing program.”

The Digital Ready initiative is part of Verizon’s goal to support 1M small businesses by 2030 with the resources to thrive in the digital economy as part of its responsible business plan, Citizen Verizon. Visit to learn more about the company’s responsible business efforts. An individual user's experience may vary and results are not guaranteed.