In Aam Aadmi Party’s victory led by Mr. Arvind Kejriwal, there are lessons for building startups you cannot learn even at Harvard. Aam Aadmi Party showed everyone that really what entrepreneurship is about.
1. Believe your idea, no matter how crazy it is
2. Accept failures with humility, always say sorry, and try to move on
3. Start-ups may fail, but entrepreneurs should move on to build next big thing
4. Be honest to customers and if you screw up ever then admit it
5. Think big, out of the box and walk the talk
6. Don’t be feel shy while sharing ideas openly, crowd-source whatever you can
7. Founding team is very important but THE entrepreneur needs to go on, even if everyone leave
8. Ensure time for family and friends for the much needed emotional motivation
9. Eat healthy so you can fight hard for your dreams
10. And the famous quote by Steve Jobs, Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish
From 100 sqft. to over 25000 sqft. and counting!
The incredible journey of TaxiForSure continues…
29 January, 2015: TaxiForSure, the Bangalore-based taxi aggregater that saw a humble beginning in a 100 sq.ft. garage-equivalent room, has just moved to their swanky new corporate office that boasts of a 19000 sq.ft office space along with 4500 sq.ft. of cafeteria. Today, the company not only celebrates this key milestone, but also marks it’s headway into 40 cities in the country backed by a 1500 member strong team. All this in a short-span of 3 years…
Every inch of the new office is reflective of the brand’s personality. It’s fun, transparent, vibrant, and energetic; and has something for every individual working at TaxiForSure. The open office adds to the personality. Co-founders Raghu and Aprameya share the same bay as that of the strategy team and the COO. The CTO is in midst of the excitement of the product and technology team, the CMO is part of the buzzing marketing team and thanks to no cubicles and separate offices for leaders, the office is one large zone of energy and activity!
Speaking about the new office, Raghunandan G, CEO & Co-founder, TaxiForSure, said, “We wouldn’t have been able to make it this far without the enthusiasm and passion of our people. While we are happy to see so many new faces amongst us, it’s also heartening to have as many familiar faces in the office as well. This indicates that we have been doing the right things to be able to retain as well attract great talent! The vibrancy of our new office is indeed a reflection of our people and I’m looking forward to crossing many more milestones with the team here!”
Aprameya R, Director & Co-founder, TaxiForSure, said, “It just seems like yesterday when Raghu and I would wait for the phone to ring for our service. From then to now, the fact that we have provided over 5 million rides just goes to show that an idea can touch several lives when it is powered by the right energies of the right kind of people! We are happy to have all the employees from our corporate office under one roof and provide the right platform to ideate and execute strategies.”
Bright colours, ample sunlight and great fun posters across the office ensure the environment is not dull for even a moment. From funky meeting rooms to a bean bag room, TaxiForSure employees have many more reasons to huddle and think big! And if an employee does feel the need to unwind they can indulge in good food, soak in lots of sunshine, play games or take that quick nap in the bunk beds
The new corporate office is located on the 3rd floor of Salarpuria Tower 2,Koramangala in Bangalore. All the creatives have been managed and created internally at TaxiForSure and there are many interesting nuances for employees and visitors to discover as they explore the new office space.
TaxiForSure started its operations in Bangalore in June 2011 with the vision to make commute convenient in India. A technology-based platform brings together existing vehicles and customers who need a ride. This strategic approach along with cutting-edge technology ensures that TaxiForSure customers get an accessible, safe, and economical ride for sure!
TaxiForSure is the brainchild of IIM-A alumni Aprameya Radhakrishna and Raghunandan G. TaxiForSure enables customers with a seamless booking experience across mobile apps, website, and call centre. App users can book a ride using the app on Android, Firefox OS, iOS, and Windows phones in under 15 seconds.
Step 1: Clear your concepts
Misconception is that ideas are worth a billion dollars but it’s wrong converting ideas into products is what fetches actual billion$. So don’t worry! If you don’t have a so called billion$ idea, then you just need skills to convert any idea into product. Learn from mark zuckerberg, how he successfully converted his idea into product.
Step 2: Search for a so called billion$ idea
Next, you have made sure that you have proper skills to execute an idea go out and search for it. In most cases you would prefer to brainstorming with your closest buddies but it may not be a source for the perfect product because to get to a billion$ you need a million users so go out and meet people become socially strong, party out with new people and then do analyses what is missing in a perfect world.
Step 3: Get wired in
Now you’ve been so much social and now as per nature’s law to maintain equilibrium get disconnected from world, forget and stop using products from your competitors like Facebook, Whatsapp etc. and start coding your product
P.S. Your girlfriend might leave you thinking you have gone into other planet
Step 4: The big day
When your product is ready the first thing after you make it live is to reconnect to the world because now unknowingly your friends and family will start the process of making you a billionaire by becoming your early users and spreading the word about it to other. Become active on social networks make your thing go viral and the day will come when you’ll be in a club with your buddies enjoying and you’ll find a random guy/girl using your product that will be the WOW moment when you will be short of tears and this will be your moment when you’ll know that now you have to scale up
Step 5: Making a billion$ company
Now that you know you have to scale up your company’s culture matters the most, make the culture you like to work in. Make your employee’s workplace where they feel better than their home because these initial set of people will push you to your dreams and most important is to keep them stick to you. Once your work culture is defined you need to maintain it and remember you are still away from your billion$ so you’ll need money to keep your offices running so next task would be to search for investors.
Step 6: Getting Seed->Series A->Series B …
Visit investors while remembering this is your product not theirs and you are the boss for what they are investing they’ll obviously take exit with a bigger amount. So keep your foot front make them understand your feelings and emotions regarding your thing and get them on board.
Step 7: The goal “Billion$”
Now you have a dedicated team, investors, you are scaling 500% growth rate the day is near start planning for celebrations…
Here we bring you our conversation with Sneha Kapoor popularly known as “The Indian Salsa Princess”, Holder of Guinness World Record for “Most Number of Swing Dance Flips in a Minute”, a very dynamic and hardworking personality.
1. How it feels credited for putting the Indian Salsa on the world map?
I started dancing in mid 2006 and before I knew it I was competing in the year 2007. I won at The Australian salsa Classic 2007, The European Salsa Masters Championship 2007, represented India at the World Salsa Championships in 2007 and placed 2nd at the Asian open salsa Championships in 2007. A lot of people abroad were shocked that people in India even do Salsa and it was a great feeling to be the first Indian to represent India and compete and win! People abroad gave my partner and me awesome reviews on our performance and considered India to be a growing country to promote salsa! So its very humbling to have helped put India on the World salsa map by winning international championships and being invited to teach salsa in workshops nationally and internationally but at the same time it’s also a huge responsibility to keep up the standard.
2. What was the initial hurdles you faced before making your passion as your profession, did your family supported you?
I started dancing when I was still in college where you are still trying to figure out who you want to be. So I had a lot of people who did not take me seriously! I had a lot of dancers/ instructors/ choreographers who were ahead of me in terms of time and had years of experience more than me. So I had to work twice as hard in half the time they did to catch up. Being in this line is not the easiest you need to be dedicated and hard working and be self driven. A lot of people told me I wouldn’t make it or become somebody in this line, a lot of people doubted me and a lot of people thought I did not deserve the success I achieved for myself and different legs of my journey but I did not let it effect me. I just concentrated on what I had to do, who I want to be and where I wanted to reach and I worked harder every passing day. So in college instead of hanging out with friends for coffee an movies I spent all my time at a studio rehearsing! I lost a lot of friends on the way at that moment but I guess it was worth it, cause I had a dream and I saw it through. My family was very supportive from the start so that was very comforting and boosted my confidence to succeed.
3. You appeared on many reality TV shows like Jhalak Dikhla Jaa 7, Dance India Dance, India’s Got Talent. So are you looking forward to participate in any other show as of now?
I just performed on the Got Talent – World Stage Live Show on colors and as of I have some work in pipeline for me on television so as soon as everything falls into place you will be able to watch me on screen again.
5. You are a Guinness World Record Holder, tell us something from the moments of making the record?
I have Guinness World Record for “Most Number of Swing Dance Flips in a Minute”. The record of 33 flips in a minute was set four years ago in the UK, but I made a new record at 39 flips. The whole experience was just amazing, rehearsals for the same were fun , shooting for the same at that moment was exciting and I don’t think i’ll ever forget the nervousness in my stomach when they were about to announce if we had broken the record! and then when we broke the record, it’s an amazing feeling to know my name is in the Guinness Book till today!
6. What is your message to young girls, as for them life is graduate->marry->kids->end?
If you have a dream don’t let anyone stop you from trying to or working towards achieving it. In today’s world it’s also our responsibility to make an effort to treat ourselves as equals when it comes to being men and woman and have people respect us and treat us that way too. The universe has put out all around us everything we desire, we just need to have the will power and self confidence to step out into the world and take it and make it our own.
7. What is your message to young and budding entrepreneurs, who are following their hearts and creating their passion into profession just like you?
Don’t let anyone tell you ‘ You Can’t’ and even if they do, don’t believe them. Only you have the power to stop yourself from reaching your dreams and goals. So if you have a dream, work hard towards, be smart about it, you probably will fail but don’t give up cause that’s your chance to learn from it and get better and smarter! Compete only with yourself everyday to do better than the previous day and you will reach your goals much faster than you think!
A passion for work and freedom led, Sneh Sharma, from her life as a leading marketer in the country to a dynamic entrepreneur. Here we bring you our conversation with this buoyant leader, Founder & CEO of the first ever only girls Digital Media agency, Ittisa.
We are different! No, we really are!
We are the first ever only girls digital media agency.
1. How you started your entrepreneurial journey?
You don’t choose to be an Entrepreneur, It just happens.
I was 23 when it happened to me. I was four months with a media house and very restless. I wanted to innovate, create, experiment, fall, fail, learn and most prominently, take charge and work and work more. However, I realized, in bigger companies it takes eons, to even fail. My intuitions urged me to experiment with my life and I realized if I wanted to start something, I should do it NOW. I was freshly out of college too! So in terms of lifestyle I was already in a start-up mode; before salary, comfort etc. spoil my routines, I should quit, I thought, and there began my journey as a budding entrepreneur starting my 1st company.
But Ittisa began with a provocation, and this time in the form of a book.
Winning and losing has never been a part of my big picture, but challenges have always been my driving force. Reading Sheryl Sandberg’s sensational book ‘LeanIn’ ignited my entrepreneurial journey. The intriguing narration by the COO of Facebook about new age women and her professional side of life sparked a striking thought in me, making me relive my 7 years of professional life with 7 start-ups and one multinational. I never could accept that women worked less or were less competent than men, because in all my recollection, the best performing from my school to organizations were always women.
So where are we as women going wrong? Blaming it on society seemed to be the easiest way out. Motivational content for women too were thriving at the time through ad campaigns and what not, but none walked their talk and that’s when I knew it’s actually time – time to take charge.
2. What were the initial hurdles you faced during your journey?
When it comes to starting a new business, there are so many things that could go wrong. But I have always faced every challenge as an opportunity. The idea to start an all girls agency received a lot of slack from various quarters. “That is a far-fetched and futile idea”, people would say. However, I stuck to my resolve and went ahead and started Ittisa. It’s been only 7 months into the inception and with only 10 girls on-board we have already successfully partnered with more than a dozen clients. From my past and present experiences I have realized that women are extremely hard working and have it in them to even outperform men. Provide them with opportunities is all you need to do.
Another hurdle-turned-opportunity was the general lack of trust in young entrepreneurs in the business world. But the resolve and the readiness to walk that extra mile has worked well for us. We started off by partnering with a renowned and distinguished firm like Mara Mentor and for any start up this is undoubtedly a dream start.
The hurdles that I faced never weakened my resolve instead they only further motivated me to keep striving.
3. What motivated you to make “Girls only digital media agency”?
As mentioned earlier, the idea of making it an all girls firm struck me when I read Sheryl Sandberg’s book Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead. Her stories about how women take a back seat and face innumerable challenges in their work space were an eye opener. I decided then and there that mine would be an ‘all girls’ firm. From then on I have never looked back.
And did I ever complete the book? Never could I. But here I am, writing a completely different one.
Ittisa is now one of the youngest and fastest growing digital media agencies and I am constantly proved right in choosing an all girls space by my highly energetic and gritty team. They are my Super girls.
4. What is your message to young girls, as for them life is graduate->marry->kids->end?
You are your own architect, not what others make you. So make sure you follow your passion and put your heart and soul into achieving whatever it is that you have set your mind upon. Remember, ‘there is no force equal to that of a determined woman’.
5. What is your message to young and budding entrepreneurs?
These few lines etched by Lord Tennyson pretty much sums it up,
“To Strive, To Seek, To Find and Never to Yield.”
3 Qualities that are must for every entrepreneur are entrepreneurial passion leadership skills and open thought process.
1. Be a Listener
Listen to your customer’s needs, build strong connections with them while pitching your idea. Be an inspirational leader that a team can believe.
2. Get disciplined
For an entrepreneur learning never stops. They put themselves in the consumer’s shoes to get actual requirements of them. A strong start-up is built on the foundation of customer’s needs, and the intelligent allocation of available resources.
3. Become passionate.
There might be need of many trials and error may occur before finding the right business model that should work for you, all you need is commitment towards your goal.
It’s is all about living your dreams and believing in yourself that you can do it.
Many people believe that starting-up is very tough process made only for some extraordinary people. They want to start-up, but some times they dont know how to do this. They wonder if it’s a good time to start-up. The fact is, never is a bad time to Start, launching even in tough economic times can also be smart. If you do homework, there might be need for your Start-up, and many people are reluctant to start in tough times, your new business has a better chance of getting noticed. So start now… Watch the motivational videos below