Mamaprenista Ami Bhansali of Chai Diaries on her mission to Make Fresh Premium Teas Accessible to All


Welcome Ami! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business:

Chai Diaries is a lifestyle brand retailing specialty teas. Inspired by my tea-enriched household (three generations of history in growing and manufacturing tea in the beautiful Nilgiris, India), the brand is all about REAL TEA, REAL HERBS, REAL SPICES! Embracing a tea culture from early on, at Chai Diaries, we are on a mission to make fresh, premium teas accessible to all. Inspired by fashion, art, culture, and diversity, Chai Diaries is about clean ingredients, beautiful packaging, and a superior tea experience. Sourcing teas from the world-over, our specialty teas are hand blended locally in Los Angeles, California.

So Ami, what excites you about being an Entreprenista League member?

Meeting like minded ambitious women, here to change the world!

Starting your own business can be intimidating! What made you take the leap to start your own business?

I have always been an entrepreneur! Surrounded by entrepreneurs early on in life, I think the excitement of creating something and being able to share it with the world, living a legacy that far exceeds my own life…was very appealing to me!

So Ami, what was your background prior to starting your own business?

Public Relations and marketing. I launched 2 successful branding & marketing companies during my time in India where we worked with luxury brands coming into the country in the fashion and food space.

Did you always know you wanted to be an entrepreneur?


Ami, when you first launched your business, what was your initial marketing strategy?

I was sampling my teas at a neighborhood cafe in New York City! I was doing free demos at stores like Lululemon after their yoga sessions. I think having a personal touch and seeing your customer’s reactions first hand is the best marketing strategy. You just scale from there – remembering this foundation!

Entreprenistas overcome challenges every single day. What is the biggest challenge you have encountered along the way?

As a small business owner, you need to be your own best cheerleader. It is easy to spin down the dark alley of self-doubt and loathing. You need to trust you are doing something bigger than yourself. You are providing a service and helping your community. That is what kept me going, I wanted more women to accept entrepreneurship as a way of life. As a mom of two, it is a constant juggle of roles but somehow we find the strength to do it. Don’t get threatened if you are the only girl in the room, stand tall and proud and let your voice be heard. It gets overwhelming, but you break each problem into a smaller challenge, and you remember to celebrate each win. I remember being disheartened after a retail meeting and a friend gave me the best advice ever. She said, “Take the emotion out of it.” What that meant is that a “no” isn’t a “no” forever, it’s a “not right now”, and that changed the game for me. I followed up without my ego getting in the way with vendors, suppliers, customers, networking associates until they heard me. That is one of the biggest challenges I overcame for Chai Diaries to finally catch a break.

What is the accomplishment you are the most proud of to date?

Being featured in Forbes. It was a testament of what I was doing, why I left my comfortable life in India to pursue a dream that seemed impossible in an international country! It was in a way, making my father proud, finally making sense of the journey I was on!

Do you believe in work/life balance? What are some of your best tips?

Absolutely! Being a mother of 2 very active toddlers, you tend to re-look at life and it’s priorities. I have always been ambitious and career focused, but becoming a mother made my WHY even more authentic. I feel entrepreneurship is for the long run and every milestone – personal and professional – need to be celebrated to stay true to our purpose.

What’s a piece of advice you can share that you wish you’d known when you first started your Entreprenista journey?

That there is a network of like minded individuals sharing the same challenges as me and willing to help!

Ami, you have lots to celebrate! What have you achieved recently that you’d like to celebrate with our community?

The Entreprenista 100 award!

What’s next for your business? What can we expect to see over the next few years?

This is a very exciting year for us! We are growing our national retail distribution. We are launching some exciting customer favorite products in new packaging. We are actively growing our private label business and reaching more customers. For us tea is more than just the leaves…it is the lifestyle you build around your morning cuppa! We are the cheerleaders helping our customers live their most authentic life – be it in the silence of the morning when a mom drinks her first cup of chai before the kids wake up, a VP calming his nerves before he steps into the boardroom or a college kid about to embark on his/her life’s adventure! Chai Diaries recognizes you, for who you are in the pages of your journal!

 Learn more about the Entreprenista League and join today!

Share it!

Posted in

Leave a Comment

Shaping the Future of Media Production with Lena Jenkins-Smith

“As a leader, I knew that it was important for me to know the job. I have to know what it takes financially, physically, mentally to do any job. I would never want to tell somebody to do a job and be responsible for managing them in that position if I didn’t know what the…

Self-Care as a Leadership Strategy with BetterHelp’s Haesue Jo

“You’re pushing yourself beyond what you feel is comfortable, which means you’re gonna have chapters of discomfort or feeling like, ‘I’m not really sure if I’m there yet. And sometimes that’s true. Sometimes you’re not there yet. It’s good to tune into that because then you know where you should be focusing to improve.” In…

Tara Magalski on Founding a Spirit-Led Community for Holistic Health

Hi, Tara! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: My name is Tara Magalski, and I am a wellness maven and the founder of Divine Lifestyles, and the DL Collective: a membership-style spirit-led community and online holistic health + healing resource center, an online sanctuary to experience a deeper state of alignment…

Tysheda Williams on Her Journey to Founding a Luxury Experience Company

Hi, Tysheda! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Hi, I’m Tysheda Williams. With an unwavering passion for curating enchanting experiences, I’ve spent years cultivating memories that transcend borders. From exploring the historic wonders of Europe to immersing myself in the vibrant cultures of Asia, the opulence of Dubai, and countless more…

Mayra Gomez-Sanchez on Her BIPOC Copywriting and Marketing Company

Hi, Mayra! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Hello everyone, I’m Mayra (my-rah) Founder and CEO of Cultural Visionaries – a copywriting and marketing strategy and a Latina-run company. I write for BIPOC business owners—and anyone who shares my values and vision—wanting to create a meaningful impact on other people’s lives.…

Making a Marketing Impact with Lindsey Breitwieser

“We don’t have to do a million things, we just have to do the right things. We often feel like ‘I don’t have a big budget to spend on ads and that’s why I’m not successful.’ We’re chasing all of these different marketing tactics… In truth, we don’t actually need to be doing that much.”…

Kwandaa Roberts Shares Her Success Story Making Modern Dollhouses

Hi, Kwandaa! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: I’m Kwandaa Roberts, an OB/GYN and interior designer who sells high-style, modern dollhouses called Tiny House Calls. What excites you about being an Entreprenista League member? I have found networking with other women entrepreneurs to be one of the most important tools in…

Personalizing Maternal Wellness through One Tribe with Emilie Fritz Veloso

“Keep the momentum going. And that’s continuous meetings, continuous networking. And then set dates really set a, ‘We are looking to raise this by this time,’ so that you give yourself a deadline, and you give the investors a deadline, and you can hold yourself to it.” In this episode of Entreprenista, we sat down…

Caitlin Murphy on Her Freight Firm and Passion for Philanthropy

Hi, Caitlin! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Hi, my name is Caitlin Murphy and I am the Founder and CEO of Global Gateway Logistics, a global freight forwarding firm. My firm optimizes and simplifies the global shipping process. What excites you about being an Entreprenista League member? It can be…

Tabitha DeSeranno on Discovering Her Passion and Launching a Branding Company

Hi, Tabitha! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Hi, I’m Tabitha, the creative force behind Vivid Pixel Studio, where I blend strategy, design, and storytelling to craft impactful online presences for passionate service providers. I specialize in creating bespoke websites, impactful brands, and tailored marketing strategies to help service-based businesses not…

Transforming Your Mindset Through Hypnosis & NLP with Billé Frazier

“You know, it hurts. Nobody likes rejection and somebody didn’t like you—whether it be in a relationship or in a job. But you have to figure out how to get up and dust yourself off and make it work. And that’s a large part of what I try to impart to my clients, too, when…

Dr. Christina Jerger Shares About Her Femininity Coaching Business

Hi, Christina! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: I’m Dr. Christina and the CEO and Founder of femsaloud based in Los Angeles, CA. I offer luxurious femininity coaching for female entrepreneurs, executives, and celebrities. With LA’s #1 VIP femininity makeover I make elite women irresistibly feminine and thriving in life. Whether…

Creating a Meal-Kit Revolution with Ooshma Garg

“[You’re] spending money and growing not at a sustainable pace, but at this hyper-accelerated pace in order to rapidly take up market share and drown out competitors. When you keep raising money to do that, you keep giving more and more people big chunks of your business. The only way it works is if you…

Marine Turned Chef Joanne Thomas Shares About Her Cooking Career and Business

Hi, Joanne! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Hi! I’m Chef Joanne Thomas, a world-renowned culinary artist known for exceptional skills, creative flair, and dedication to the art of cooking. With a career spanning decades, I’ve curated a collection of custom-blended spices, gourmet butters, and other culinary delights that cater to…

Joanie French On Her Business That Creates Unforgettable Experiences Through Nature

Hi, Joanie! Please share a brief introduction about yourself and your business: Hey there! I’m Joanie, the creative mind behind Harmony Escape Experiences. Based in Winnipeg, Manitoba, I’m passionate about crafting unforgettable moments through personalized events. As an Office Administrator by day and an aspiring entrepreneur always, I’m on a mission to create harmonious and…