7 Questions: Why Avani Desai loves the 'moon' button on her iPhone

May 13, 2019 Avani Desai

As president of Tampa accounting firm Schellman & Company, Bizwomen Headliner Avani Desai deals with topics like emerging healthcare issues and privacy concerns for organizations, so distractions come with the territory.

But for an hour each day, she puts her messaging apps on "do not disturb" to make sure she has 60 minutes of completely focused time.

Desai said she spends her work day focusing on growth strategies, strategic client and market development, industry analysis and new services for the firm.


Here are her answers to Bizwomen's 7 Questions:

1. First job?  My parents owned a dry cleaner from the time I turned five until I was 16. So every weekend, my parents would take me to the cleaners, and I became really great at packing and folding clothes. Around age 12, they put me on the front desk, and it taught me about client service and how to deal with difficult discussions.

2. How do you clear your head?  Running and Orangetheory Fitness

3. Dream travel destination?  Fiji

4. Favorite hack?  Do not Disturb on your phone and your work instant messages. I spend an hour every morning on DND. I hit the moon button on my iPhone and I am completely focused and much less distracted. We want to always answer phone calls, instant messages, emails…but an hour is doable, and now, for me — necessary.

5. What do you always pack in your suitcase?  Noise-cancelling headphones

6. Favorite TV (or streaming service) binge?  "Scandal" — Love Olivia Pope’s strong attitude and her fashion sense!

7. If there’s one thing I should know about you, it’s …  I believe failure is necessary to not only appreciate successes, but to be innovative.

About the Author

Avani Desai

Avani Desai is the President at Schellman. Avani has more than 15 years of experience in IT attestation, risk management, compliance and privacy. Avani’s primary focus is on emerging healthcare issues and privacy concerns for organizations. Named as one of the 2017 Global Leaders in Consulting by Consulting Magazine she has also been featured and published in the ISSA Journal, ITSP Magazine, ISACA Journal, Information Security Buzz, Healthcare Tech Outlook, and many more. Avani also sits on the board of Catalist, a not for profit that empowers women by supporting the creation, development and expansion of collective giving through informed grantmaking. In addition, she is co-chair of 100 Women Strong, a female only venture philanthropic fund to solve problems related to women and children in the community.

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