The drive and compassion of this week’s woman of Ace is incredibly inspiring. Sheetal Maya Nanda is the Founder and Principal Lawyer of Quantum Law Group, an entertainment and immigration law firm guided by the pillars of passion, creativity, integrity, and empowerment. Keep reading to find out how Sheetal is pursuing her passions, while maintaining balance in her life.
Ace: What are you up to? (Your current hustle)
Sheetal: I’m the founder of and managing lawyer at Quantum Law Group, a Toronto-based boutique law firm that specializes in Entertainment and Immigration Law. Different as they appear on the surface, they are surprisingly complimentary areas. We support writers, producers, directors, actors, authors, tech entrepreneurs and digital content creators. For example, my firm has managed the immigration process for a foreign production company enabling them to film their television show in Canada. We also negotiated a contract for a client with one of the biggest Bollywood stars in the world. In addition, we’ve helped several tech start-ups in various industries around the globe immigrate their companies to Canada.
I’m especially passionate about developing talent and supporting my clients’ creative projects. Through a series of very serendipitous events, my firm is growing organically. I’m ensuring we make significant progress in modernizing how legal services are delivered by leveraging technology, keeping a low overhead, providing practical and creative solutions, and going above and beyond to ensure our clients understand the advice they are receiving.
Currently, I’m co-developing a wellness series with a fellow female entrepreneur that will be launching in 2019. We’ll be releasing more details about this shortly.
Ace: Why is this important to you? (Where did this passion come from?)
Sheetal: Having the freedom and joy to pursue my passions has always been central to my identity. Perhaps this is part of why I’ve never perceived myself as a “conventional” lawyer - notably since I wanted to combine entertainment and immigration work. When I couldn’t find a law firm that allowed me to do both, I created my own. As a result, I’ve been forging an uncharted path; one that allows me to have balance in my life, and control over my time and energy.
This exploration has resulted in some very cool collaborations, allowing me to advocate for my clients and present unseen opportunities to them as well - something I really enjoy doing because I’m a connector at my core. This is important to me because these are folks who are pouring themselves into what they do. It takes a lot of courage to be so authentic and vulnerable. I have immense respect for that – maybe because it’s how I approach what I do and I recognize the challenges.
You could say that my firm reflects who I am - a creative thinker who enjoys empowering her clients. I make sure they ask the right questions, and that both they and their work are protected.
Ace: What was your dream job growing up? How do you think this has influenced who you are today?
Sheetal: Growing up as a very shy child, books, TV, and movies were my escape. I lived through the characters and still get lost in their stories. I wanted to recreate that for others and be a writer when I grew up. There’s something magical about diving into a really good story!
As a lawyer, I get to be a part of my client’s story and share their narrative through legal submissions and negotiations. In some cases, I’m helping to bring their manuscripts or screenplays closer to reality. My passion for a good story ensures I stay true to my mandate of pursuing projects and taking on cases that ignite me.
Ace: If you could describe yourself in only three words, what would they be?
Sheetal: Inquisitive. Determined. Passionate.
Ace: Who’s your biggest inspiration and why?
Sheetal: My dad. He strives to operate from a place of integrity in everything he does, and chooses to see obstacles as opportunities. That’s inspiring. He reminds me to see the world from a loving perspective since he’s continuously choosing love over fear - especially when it is hard. His approach has shaped how I function in the world, as an entrepreneur, as a lawyer, and as a person.
My clients also inspire me every day. They’re unapologetically pursuing their dreams, whether they’re starting a tech company, directing their passion project, or writing a phenomenal script, and I am in awe of them.
Ace: What does the term “Boss Babe” mean to you?
Sheetal: A woman who was willing to dream fearlessly and to take the leap of faith necessary to make those dreams a reality. She lives her life on her own terms. She is strong, resilient and adventurous. She leads others with grace and integrity. She is non-reactive and can calmly handle the good, the bad, and the messy.
She is a woman with confidence who walks in her own truth and isn’t afraid to let go, fall, and courageously move forward, even if the odds are stacked against her. She knows her worth and has a clear sense of what her boundaries are, and what she stands for.
Ace: How do you empower other women?
Sheetal: By being as real as I possibly can with them. I try to share not just the high points of my journey and my life, but the low points as well. This way, they’re not so hard on themselves if things don’t seem to be unfolding in their lives as perfectly as they appear to be on someone else’s Instagram feed. I also try to celebrate their uniqueness, by acknowledging and appreciating their skills and talents.
Ace: What is the best advice you’ve ever received from another woman?
Sheetal: When I first started my practice, a female entrepreneur I respect a great deal told me to go at my own pace, and not to expect everyone to be in synch with me, or to understand my vision. It’s the best advice I’ve ever received. Following it ensures I continue to work with people I am aligned with.
Ace: Can you share the biggest lesson you’ve learned from a failure?
Sheetal: To trust my intuition over the opinions of others and to always come from a place of integrity.
Ace: When you are feeling overwhelmed, what do you do to find peace?
Sheetal: I maintain a daily meditation practice. It’s how I connect with myself and increase my self-awareness. This helps me avoid feeling overwhelmed. There is such power in stillness and I make it a priority to keep myself grounded and centered. Getting in a good workout also always helps! Whether I’m hiking, boxing, in the gym, or sprinting in a Barry’s Bootcamp class, it’s a way for me to disengage and completely focus on my alignment. It allows me to meditate in an active way, and that’s the best thing I can do for myself when I’m feeling overwhelmed.
I also recently completed my Level 1 Reiki training and I’m looking forward to incorporating Reiki Healing into my self-care routine.
Ace: What legacy do you hope to be remembered for?
Sheetal: Honestly, I haven’t quite figured that one out yet. I think the answer to this will evolve as I continue to move forward and grow. For now, I hope to be remembered for being kind; for being a person who showed up for others, authentically, compassionately, and lovingly… and did a little bit of good in my own small, but meaningful way. I hope my clients remember me as someone who had their backs, had faith in them, and worked with them to see their creative visions and projects come to fruition. I think this is a good starting point.
Ace: Where can we find out more about you so we can continue to support you?
Stay connected with Sheetal: @sheetal_maya