Bengaluru: She is from a small town in Jharkhand, but she has had a big impact on the lives of thousands of people through her career spanning close to 50 years. Ms Shobha Misra is now a household name for teaching personality and communication skills to those who find themselves tongue tied in social gatherings, and, more importantly, during job interviews. Her skill improvement classes have helped many reach top rungs in their professional lives.
Ms Misra, who hails from Madhupur in Jharkhand, was passionate about languages and completed her masters in literature with specialisation in English speaking from the Banaras Hindu University (BHU). Her first foray into teaching communication skills and personality development was in Madhupur on January 17, 1971.
Ms Misra’s mission is to contribute to the development of the country by helping people reach their full potential. She teaches her students how to overcome their shyness while conversing in English and how to clear job interviews.
Ms Misra said that her teaching centre has helped fulfil the dreams of many who have gone on to lead a successful life. “Everyone is gifted with some kind of talent. But they become conscious and get scared in social settings. Our aim is to instil confidence among such people and teach them how to express themselves by using the right words and body language. This helps them face any interview and converse with their superiors effectively,” she said.
The three-month course has been prepared entirely by her and she claims that it helps individuals face not just interviews, but the world. “I have doctors, engineers, scientists, chartered accountants, students from IITs and IIMs attending my classes. Even those coming from other countries, like Japan, Thailand, Nepal, Dubai, take my course. Some of these students are toppers at their institutes, but lack skills to express themselves. I also get people from economically weaker backgrounds, and I am glad they want to make it big in their lives. The reason they take up the course is because they know communication is the key to open the doors to a better life,” she said.
She said, “I moved to Bengaluru because my husband was transferred here. I set up a centre here in 1990. I did not advertise, nor did I have a website detailing the work I do. It was all through the word of mouth. After students from the first few batches found success, they started telling others about the advantages of my course. I was passionate about what I did, and soon a lot of people knew me. I got the official website made only in 2010 and till then it was only my work that did the talking.”
She said, “I’m 64 years old now and I still love teaching people, and I have been teaching for the last 49 years. Recognition has been pouring in for my work, not only from within the country, but also from all over the world. I have been invited by top institutions to deliver talks on personality development and communication skills.”
Ms Misra said, “I believe that empowering an individual helps their families too. Nothing is impossible, but at the same time, nothing comes easy. One has to have the dedication and put in the hard work to be successful.”
She said, “I have been conferred with numerous awards, but it was my husband Anil Misra, who helped me achieve these laurels.”