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The Road to SEE(ing) GOOD

Shilpa Gadhok, Founder & CEO

Headshot of Shilpa Gadhok


I grew up around the practice of ‘service to others’ my entire life. The notion that someone or something is more important than your own self that deserves protecting, that deserves nurturing, holds a high regard in my family and ancestral heritage. Both of my parents worked for the Federal Government during their professional careers, and my ancestors and relatives have spanned multiple generations in service to their countries through the Army, Air Force, and Navy. Those that did not serve in the military found other ways to help serve their communities by taking on careers as educators and medical workers. My story, and the journey to building SEE GOOD STRATEGY GROUP has been fueled by years of self-discovery to find my own way, my own path, toward building something that matters.

Early on in my brand management career, I had the opportunity to intern on the Pampers brand at Procter & Gamble. Ever the creative spirit, I enjoyed the practice of combining my business and financial acumen with my personal passion for storytelling. After spending weeks analyzing market data and developing brand strategy decks, our team came together for an afternoon at the zoo where we hosted multiple baby showers for mothers-to-be who had gone through incredible hardships, trauma, and lacked the financial resources that I took for granted daily. Until that day, I hadn’t understood how a diaper brand could make such a difference in the lives of these families—and then I sat across from them watching tears roll down their cheeks as they unwrapped our care packages: a year’s supply of free diapers, car seats, strollers, bottles, sanitary wipes and creams. There were no cameras, no content creators, nothing to “document and share” the moment; in fact, no one outside our team even knew of the event. Just an afternoon spent with the intention to share in these moments with these families during their most critical time of need.

Hearing those mothers’ stories brought so much meaning to my work. It completely changed the way I looked at building brands and the impact companies were capable of making. While that afternoon at the zoo was a small gesture alone, it unlocked the understanding for me that brands held incredible responsibility and power in shaping the communities they served. There was so much potential to do so much good in this world. Throughout my career, I longed for that feeling again. I found it when I led the brand team at Cosmic Bliss. We focused on fighting for a better food system by championing regenerative agriculture. A passionate foodie, I wanted to learn everything I could about regenerative agriculture and its role in nurturing our land, environment, and society. We were able to spearhead Cosmic Bliss’s brand purpose to truly fuel every part of our DNA: from culture to supply chain, from marketing to operations.

I liken my journey much to Lindsay Levin’s experience in building Leader’s Quest as she so eloquently relays in her book, Invisible Giants, “I’d grown increasingly restless, fueled by an old disquiet and a feeling that there was something different I had to do if only I could figure it out.” My decision to build this firm is my way of acting on those internal feelings of restlessness. I have built and revitalized brands and divisions with multinational corporations and start-up emerging brands across different categories and markets, each with their own unique set of challenges. Having a general management background has enabled me to see these challenges not only from a marketing lens, but also how strategic decisions and executions impact the P&L and cross functional departments. But the pathway toward a better, stronger and more resilient future and economy doesn’t start and stop with profit and loss alone – I firmly believe we have to factor in the broader role that our firms in Corporate America play in many of these broader systemic issues – issues like climate impact, global public health, the degeneration our food system, growing inequality and racial discrimination, climate justice, global access to education, and more. Doing so requires a long-term approach to building and scaling companies with a conscious mindset – from their organizational fundamentals all the way through to how they operate.

In a sector that is largely incentivized to take a short-term approach when it comes to making business decisions, these dynamics are at odds with each other. To shift how we prioritize resources at the private sector level, re-evaluating how we systematically value and incentivize business leaders is critical – and there is much work being done on that front. At the same time, it will require business leaders to evolve their ways of working from a shareholder primacy model to a stakeholder primacy model.

Brands and businesses add more value when they do good in this world – it’s as simple as that. At SEE GOOD STRATEGY GROUP, we help organizations step-change the way they think about organizational growth, by uniting under a shared purpose and activating impact streams that directly benefit the societies, environments, and economies they serve. If any of this resonates with you – I look forward to working with and collaborating with you.

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