And I’ve shifted back to WP again!

So, if you’ve noticed, i’ve not been regularly blogging off late. Well till date. I got carried away by @guglanisam’s persuasive talks and shifted to Posterous from WP sometime back. Like all relationships, all was well initially, until the Posterous team migrated to Twitter. Then on, each time i had a blog post to go live – Posterous would either be down or inaccessible. The result – I told myself, i’ll shift my blog to WP and then start blogging.

But, like many things, this migration took back seat amongst other tasks. Until recently, when, @ckjedimaster came into picture. He’s helped me not just in migrating, but choosing a beautiful theme & getting a favicon in place too! Thanks to him that I am back to blogging and on WP now. @CK thanks dude, i owe you!

Now with this plush new theme, i am going to blog more often than i’d ever done! [Finger’s crossed!]

A gentleman’s parting remarks, a lesson for all of us to behold!

I admire Rahul Dravid for what he is as a human being. As a cricketeer he’s perhaps among the very few who held the reference “A gentleman’s game” true till date. His simplicity, his focus and dedication are examples for many of us to refer to. 

I was just reading the transcript of his retirement statement and when i finished it struck to me that here’s a guy who’s lived his life through a certain discipline, a discipline of dedication, passion and truth. Something he’s said as his parting lines are ones that’s relevant not just to sportsmen, but all of us across various professions, countries and cultures. Something if all of us tried to our best of abilities, the world would definitely be a better place!

 My approach to cricket has been reasonably simple: it was about giving everything to the team, it was about playing with dignity and it was about upholding the spirit of the game. I hope I have done some of that. I have failed at times, but I have never stopped trying. It is why I leave with sadness but also with pride.

I see you leave with sadness Rahul, but i’ll always be proud of the fact that a person such as you represented our country, India!

Salute! 

Here’s to the crazy one!

Thank you Steve for showing me how life can be lived. To fearlessly make the most of all opportunities and seek opportunities where there is none. To push the limits of imagination. To dis-prove by doing. To live life each day as if it were my last!

Thanks for reinforcing the belief that a kick-ass product does its own marketing. That products are built to make life easier, hence make it an experience! An experience that end users crave for.

You’ve taught me a lot. Though i never knew you in person, though you were instrumental in making inanimate products, you spoke to me through your products. You told me that you cared about me. You gave me what i wanted. You surprised me by making possible what i thought would take technology many more years to achieve. You helped me gain confidence through your products. You made me look good with your products on me. You were the reson that people envied me 🙂

I am proud to be a round peg in a square hole. Thanks for the immense impact you’ve had on me, and will continue to have, without being obvious about it! You are a rock star. You are a hero. To me you are GOD. I will miss you.

Gurukulday2_086

We at The Morpheus love Steve and Apple so much that we recently borrowed the text of “Crazy Ones”, engraved it onto a plaque and gave it to the morpheus gang for inspiration!

 

India Against Corruption: My experience of India’s belief in the cause

I have always believed that Life can be led in a very transparent, truthful manner; without indulging in “corruption”. I have stood for what I have believed in. Followed the rule book, questioned it if seemed redundant or not relevant (its obvious with the fast pace that things are changing).

I have seen lot many people (friends & family) race past me in life, by taking shortcuts of all sorts – bribe and get a driving license without even being physically present there, breaking traffic signals & bribing the cop to get away for cheap, or evade taxes. I believe that these are short cuts they have carved in their lives.

As kids my sister and I were not ‘told’ to follow certain principles or do things a certain way, but we have parents who led by example. So, there is a lot you learn without being taught and there is a lot you have to live up to – the standards are self-set, happens automatically.

My dad, a civil engineer quit his PWD job as he could not fit into the system of accepting bribes, he refused to give in & he was pressurised by people above and below in hierarchy. He quit to embrace a noble profession – teach. Towards the end of his career, he was put to quest again – where his promotion was withheld to being a Principal, coz he was not the one with the “right connections”. Even now, he took pre-mature retirement & did not give in. Now, he is a peaceful man working as a television actor & living a senior citizens life.

I have learnt a lot from my parents who have not given into corrupt methods & measures of the society. To the best extent possible, even I have lived my life following the same principles. I confess, that I have given in a couple of times – I cannot forgive myself for it. Perhaps, I was too beaten down by the corrupt system.

English

Image Courtesy: IndiaAgainstCorruption website

Sameer & I have often discussed in length that right now if there is anything that is hindering India’s growth & progress to becoming a super power is its rampant corruption. I strongly believe that if the Jan Lokpal Bill gets its due attention on the floor of the parliament, we will have a respectable citizen ombudsman in place that will check the degree of corrupt activities. This indeed does not mean eradication, but does mean inoculation. So, maybe 10 years from now my daughter can get her passport renewed without paying the clerk money to get it in her hands (this happened to Sameer and we had to pay as we were leaving for Kenya in two days on work – the passport office did not dispatch the document even though we were on tatkal mode, as they knew that this renewal was important for us).

On Wednesday, 17th August, 2011. It was day 2, Anna & his teammates were retained in Tihar Jail (by now, Anna had detained himself & was adamant that he will leave without any condition levied on his fast unto death protest). Sameer, Abhishek & I set out to contribute towards “our” cause for an hour to the Rally Ground, Sector 25 in Chandigarh. There was Section 144 in Chandigarh as was the case in rest of India. At the rally ground, the coordinator asked us if we’re ready to volunteer, we agreed.

We geared ourselves with posters of India against corruption, communication material, pasted stickers on our tee shirts & set out to spread the word. What I witnessed in the next 80 minutes was pure MAGIC! We stood with the posters held by our chests, smiling on the road dividers at a busy Sector 36 & 37 junction. We were 3, each took one divider & stood there spreading the word, asking people to participate by going to the Rally Ground.

The police patrol jeep followed us in less than 15 minutes. The cop started questioning us, asked us to disperse if not he’ll have to take action. Sameer & Abhishek were interacting with him. I did not stop to engage in talk, without wasting time, I continued to stand by the junction displaying the India Against Corruption poster. The police patrol jeep sped away after watching our activities for about 20 mins.

The reactions were varied:

  • Uncles, aunts, grandparents all waved at me, made eye contact and said “shabhash” good job. Some said, “good job. we are with anna”
  • Youngsters, college going kids, school kids – all of them cheered me in their own way. some smiled, some nodded, some waved, some showed thumbs up.
  • Rich, poor, people walking, ones in cars, those on bikes and even auto-rickshaws – all of them made eye contact. Acknowledged my message.
  • One uncle came up to me and said, “Good job beta. Keep it up. the entire nation is with anna & so am I”
  • Many people stopped to know more, some specifically asked if we were staging a protest or if there was some activity happening as they wanted to participate too.
  • A press photographer came a took our photos too 🙂
  • Three people asked me to go stand by the shade & spread the word (it was between 12 & 1:30noon that we were there, as it was lunch time and high traffic. This particular day was warm as it had rained a lot the previous night.)
  • A gentleman came by, stopped his car in front of me, approached me & said “You are doing a great job. I want to do something too. What can I do for you.” He went to the boot of his car, opened it. Picked up a bottle of “Slice Mango”, came to me and said “Please accept this, something that I can do from my side”. I refused initially, saying I was volunteering. But he pressed saying, “you are doing a great job, I am volunteering too & want to help in the cause”. I was moved & accepted the juice bottle. He had gone around the roundabout and offered Abhishek & Sameer a bottle each, this I got to know later.

Those 80 odd minutes, on the street, spreading awareness in a very silent / peaceful way was the most enriching time of my life. I have supported various causes, done street plays to spread awareness on issues/topics in the past. But this was different, very different. I was proud of what I was doing, super confident, never did my smile wane off – it was a proud smile actually. I also realized that what I stood there for mattered to each and every one who passed by. I saw integrity in their gestures, I saw resentment against the corrupt system, I saw faith in Anna Hazare, I saw positive hope & a confident attitude among people. The experience was a “high” of another sort.

When we got back to the Rally Ground we saw a few people who had taken information with us there. Later that evening, we saw many others we had interacted with participate in the candle march along with their friends. (grass-root level word of mouth in play).

I was proud, full of energy & glad that I am contributing to a cause I believe will change the face of India. Thanks Anna Hazare for knowingly or unknowingly evoking the confidence of standing up to ones own rights amongst us Indians!

I am traveling across 3 other cities in the next week & I will take time from work to raise my voice against corruption in support of Anna Hazare. I want to be a part of this historical movement, a change maker, someone who can proudly narrate stories of my growing up years – when I grow old.

 

3 Keys to a successful startup: Engage-Build-Sell

Choosing what to focus on after getting started can be rather confusing for the startup founders. In most cases founders lose out on crucial time, right after starting, by focusing on wrong  things like fund-raising, team building, deep market research, building a fully functional product as their first release to go public!

When a startup gets started, it should have 4 things:

1.       A founding team (or a founder ) committed to making things work against all odds

2.       An important problem that impacts a significant set of customers, and hypothesis for the potential solution(s) that needs to be proven right or wrong

3.       Have skills to hand-create solution to the problem, combined with the initial subject matter expertise in the domain they are working on

4.       Some basic money to survive and work on the problem / solution

The above ingredients are usually a resultant of:

·         An ‘ah-ha’ moment of finding the right idea / problem to solve

·         A natural coming together of a team which has one main goal – solving the same pain-point

Once the problem to solve is identified, the team should spend time in figuring out the best way to executing it. So where does one start, anyway?

What to focus on?

When a team gets started, there are far too many things to take care of. Focusing on things that do not matter may happen unconsciously or unintentionally. The one guideline that perhaps will help in choosing one task over the other maybe in asking the question “How big is the impact of the task I’ll do to the lives of my potential/existing customers”. This is true not just for teams that are starting out, but all startups across (even helpful for executives in large companies in prioritizing their tasks).

Simply put, a startup should not spend anytime in things that do not impact its end customers / audience, as getting their attention and making an impact early is important.

Broadly classified, early stage startups should focus on only 3 things and keep the customer in mind at all times:

 

Build-sell-engage

·         Engage: It is important to engage with potential customers to convert strangers to friends. First, think of who these potential customers are going to be. Every section of potential customers will have an early adopter category. These are people who are quick to use a product that seems useful, quick to give feedback, are largely forgiving and have a sense of what else is there in the market in the same domain. These are also influencers who will bring other users to your product. Look for such influencers in the potential customer segment you are going after. Reaching out to them, engaging in a dialogue will help in building a community that is listening to you or giving you attention, even before the initial product is launched.

How do you reach out and start a dialogue with them? Today, there are various cost-efficient or no-cost avenues of reaching out to strangers and making friends. Startup teams can simply start with their own blogs & establish their authority over the problem they are trying to solve. Social networks, micro-blogging sites and relevant online / offline forums are good start points to engaging the potential customer initially. Let the communication be focused to reach out to a few, strong followers. Do not spread thin. It’s not about spamming a list of email ids; but reaching out with your thoughts so that people who are interested will organically engage with you.

A startup building efficient ways of securing servers for businesses can engage with their potential customers by organizing seminars or events that teaches people how to secure their servers by themselves or how to pick the best tools for that job.  These events should be designed to give the potential customer a lot of value. This will lead to building of confidence, trust and respect about the product/brand/startup in the minds of the potential customers. But, at not point should these avenues be used to sell directly. The idea is to influence and hog larger mindshare, so that they pick you when they have to make a buying decision.  Like how McDonald’s is for burgers!

·         Build: The first version of the product/solution that a startup will build must be something that aims to solve an important / acute problem for a specific set of small potential customers. It can be incomplete or imperfect. What is built can be a small part of the large problem the startup is trying to solve. But, it must be something that can be executed quickly and with the resources available within the startup team. It’s important to build and push out to early adopters.

The scope of the initial product must be narrowed down to a very myopic level. This minimum useful product must have one compelling reason for customers to use it. If it’s scrappy and looks alpha-like its fine (in fact the early adopters prefer it that – so that they can help you polish it). 

Remember using the initial versions of the internet? Connecting the modem to a telephone line, waiting for dial-tone, dialing in multiple times before it gets connected! As early internet users, we had all the patience of dialing a hundred times and endlessly waiting for pages to load – only because that was the only way to connect to the internet!

·         Sell:  Once you have a quick and dirty version of your product ready, reach out to the customers you’ve engaged with and sell it to them. Here sell does not necessarily mean in exchange for money; it also means getting end customers to use your product. It is important to get as many customers to use your product to get constructive, relevant feedback to build on the next version. 

It is important to start selling early. To reach out to potential customers, pitch them the value proposition, sign them up to use the product / solution. The earlier a startup does this, the better, as they have real audience to validate their product and give feedback.  

Though there was multiple email applications, most of us flocked to get beta invites of gmail. This was because google had engaged with us and had enticed us enough for us to get wishful about the ‘invite only’ gmail.  Or do you remember signing up as a test user for any of the products in the market today? I am sure you’ll be able to relate to the value that test users like you could provide to a product that’s being built.

The above 3 things are always iterative and can work in parallel. Engage while you Build, Sell & Engage.

In all building a great product is a slow, iterative and painful process. It’s important to believe completely in what you are doing, when you get started, but be agile and keep an open mind to change as you go along. Focus, Engage, Build Quick, Interact, Sell, Get users, Engage, Build again, Sell again, and Repeat all. 

Note: This post was written for Silicon India, sometime in July 2011. You can find the published link here.

 

 

Super Important: High Quality & Constant Innovation

I ended my Sunday evening with filling in a mystery audit report for a retail chain via RedQuanta. It was not the best of experiences i had as an end customer – it showed that the brand did not care about its customers; not in product quality, experience or even builing a rapport with its end customers. If it were not for the mystery assignment i’d accepted, i’d not and will never go and shop with that brand again!

And so, I started my Monday morning with a question that was bothering me: As a consumer, I interact with multiple brands, products, services, solutions each day. What is it that makes me remember and stick to a particular product or brand over another?

There are theories a-plenty about brand recognition, recall, loyalty and its relation to how the brand is packaged and how much is spent to make end users remember it. I really dont believe in those. 

When brands spend thousands of $$ on advertisements of all sorts and on decorative things that are perceptional; and NOT focus on delivering an unmatched experience to its end users – it upsets me. They ignore the quality of the product, they compromise on honesty in what they do, they fail to constantly connect with its end users – this for me is disasterous.

Irrespective of a company, business, product’s size and age. It is super important for them to focus on TWO things and that’s “High Quality & Constant Innovation”, and both go hand-in-hand.

Media_httpsharpbrains_ecicd

Image courtesy: Sharp Brains. This is a visual perception brain teaser where you need to determine if the inner shape is a perfect circle or not. Sometime extraneous information around your target can distort your view. Which can be a common illusionary effect for startups and companies on growth path. 

Many companies start focusing only on increasing their sales, once they are in their growth path, i.e., when they have figured out their product / service offering & are seemingly confident of delivering high quality experience. Some others dont even think / realize that delivering value, quality, experience is important; they focus on selling only too soon. 

Sadly, both the above categories forget that high quality standards are not a ONE TIME thing. It is a process of constantly innovating, meeting & raising expectations of your end customer, replicating that high-quality experience over and over again, and all the time.

Easier said than done! But then, this is something that HAS to be done, no two questions about it. I can list a dozen and plenty brands/companies/products which got us customers excited for a brief period of time, but failed badly as they could not keep their focus on high-quality and constant innovation (all the time).

Such companies fail to identify that it is the high quality experience that’s important for them to sustain. They lie to themselves, pour all the money into marketing budgets which will bring them a one-time customer and they lie again to themselves that he’s a customer for life! (sigh!)

The only way a business can benefit, prosper & grow in the long-term is when all key decision-makers across the company have a singular goal – “Delivering Super Good Quality Experience to my end customers”. (or as guglanisam would put it “hit the ball out of the park”)

That unanimous thought is a tough thing to achieve.  Hence, programming of humans, I think!

Be More: Focus on Customer Experience!

I’ve not written about a movie or a television commercial in a while, though they are one of my favorite topics of discussion. A recent advertisement i saw prompted this post. 

The latest (not sure if its latest, but the one that’s on air these days) Titan, Be More TVC with Aamir Khan has a simple context of a broken computer at a senior citizens house. Aamir is fixing it while the senior customer is complaining of time taken to respond by the company, responsibility, etc. Aamir fixes it and while he’s leaving the customer asks for a contact number in the future. That’s when the customer and we audience realize that Aamir is not a service guy, but the MD of the company. The spirit of customer service is summarized by Aamir in one sentence “No task is big or small”

See the TVC here: 

One main take away from that TVC is also the fact that for a company, customer service must be top priority. No customer is superior or inferior and anyone capable in the company should tend to serve the customer in need. All that i write here may seem idealistic to many of you who read it. I am sure people in the customer service departments of mobile operators and insurance companies will scorn at me! But, then again. Pause for a bit and think about it!

Definition of customer in this context is that person (individual or another business) who will buy something (product or service) from you.

A start-up must have customer service / customer experience as one of the top 3 things they will address as a company. The thought behind it is pretty simple and i practiced it as part of my first start-up Madhouse. 

You build your product or run a service for the end customer to use it. More number of customers who associate themselves with you translates into more revenues. If each customer who has ever interacted with you, refers at least one more customer to your company will only mean double the sales. In all, one happy customer is bound to refer more customers. Consistent customer service with focus on experience and delight will only lead to constant customer referrals – the most cost efficient marketing methods for any startup to practice!

In your initial days, as a start-up, its too soon to classify customers as – ideal customer, loss making customer, high-maintenance customer, etc. All customers when you start off are good customers. Treat them in the same manner, give each one of them the real experience of your product/service/brand. Create a sense of “wow” in them. Instill confidence in your company by being consistent in each interaction, by making the customer realize that they are special, by showing the customer that the company cares. 

A few ways you can deliver good customer service and impart a good experience are:

  • Have an internally agreed upon Service Level Agreement (SLA) that the company will respond to any existing customer complaint within X hours, it can be 12 or 24. Live upto it. You can also make this public to set customer expectation and to ensure you deliver what you commit to. 
  • Have an SLA for potential customer inquiry or prospective lead. Timely response helps in winning customers many-a-times. 
  • Its not a crime to slip-up on a commitment to your customer, but do not make it a habit. For any slip-ups ensure you say sorry and compensate with something little that leads to customer delight. At Madhouse, if we missed delivering a movie to a customer or we committed on a movie and it was not there, we’d send the next best option with a personalized sorry note and a plum cake. This experience stayed with our customers and led to lunch time pantry talks, strong customer references. As a matter of fact, this also won us loyalty points and was one of the influencing factors – for our third co-founder to approach us and discuss possibilities of him joining the team.
  • Be prepared to go all out to fulfilling a commitment to your customer, even if it means incurring some losses. That loss will be short-term for a long-term gain. 
  • As a company, everyone in the team must treat customer service / experience as super important and must be convinced about it. It must be imbibed in the culture of the company. That’s when naturally, customer related tasks will take precedence over other things that start-up teams will need to work on. 

The above list is not exhaustive, but only indicative of the importance customer service / experience should get in a start-up. 

One of the largest Retail Companies in India, a favorite of mine, Shoppers Stop from time immemorial have a simple designation attached that has made a difference in the way people have perceived that brand. Their MD is a Customer Care Associate first in designation and then MD. This small, but vital note – was a great move that has built trust among end customers towards the brand, specially in its initial days.

For a start-up if you are convinced that one of your prime tasks is to be there for the customer anytime, anywhere, anyhow – many things that you need to achieve as a start-up, your vision and the reason to exist – will all fall into perspective: the one that has a customer perspective! 

 

buy term papers

What does it take to get started?

What does it take to get started?  This question is often asked in a tone and mood that’s sacred, as if there will be a moment of nirvana by my pronunciation of truth – something that will enlighten them!  As if I’ll give them the mantra to life’s secrets and life will be happy and sunshine henceforth! (sigh, if only!)

 I typically list a set of things. The list contains roughly the same items for everyone but I customize the narrative to suit the guy on the other side. My first reaction is – Nothing. You just need to makeup you mind! J (Yeah! Simply said than done, right?)

Image Courtesy: http://www.flickr.com/photos/tutuwon/

So here I am trying to put down the most important things you need to figure out in your life before you get started!

  1. Belief:  Most important ingredient is to have belief in yourself. As an entrepreneur you will encounter times when you’ll be made to question yourself and keeping that confidence intact is super important. Closely related is the belief you have in the problem you are trying to solve – there are many (and unfortunately, near and dear ones) who will dismiss your idea!
  2. Undying Passion: You need to have a crazy passion that keeps the “never say die” attitude in you alive, even at the lowest point in your life! You need to be passionate about doing just about anything to keep that idea of yours alive. The passion that ensures you are focusing on the right things each day, a passion that will push you to solving the right problems, answering the right question, to go on when it seems all doors have closed themselves upon you!
  3. Stoic-ism (to an extent): Stoic is a dispassionate attitude, something that allows us to detach ourselves from something and not show feelings about it. I think its important to have or cultivate this trait as an entrepreneur. As an entrepreneur you are trying to solve a problem that seems critical and many times that problem may not be all that critical, its important for you to move from that idea to something else that makes sense. Being excessively obsessed with the idea or be stuck to it will not help here. Hence, the stoic-ism helps. Being stoic also helps in moving on with what you are doing and not take all the critics too seriously J
  4. Discipline: This is something that we can consciously develop. Working as an employee is something else – you perform everyday or you perform when required; it’s a choice you make. But as an entrepreneur, of course you don’t have appraisals at the end of the quarter to evaluate you, but it is self induced discipline that sees you through many quarters. You must impose a schedule, have short-term goals, a to-do-list of what you need to achieve for the day, evaluate what got done and what did not on a daily basis, and follow all of this with a supreme sense of discipline and devotion. We need to be our own watch dog, follow a self induced gate-keepers role and ensure we achieve / learn something daily and move forward.
  5. Patience & Perseverance: As an entrepreneur, the task you’ll embark upon is no less than building Rome. It will take time to build a solution to the problem at hand. Sometimes months, many-a-times a few years. If you are someone who wants fast success – this is not your play! You need to exercise immense patience, keep going at it, as well as keep others you work with interested in the project.
  6. Sense of selflessness: Having personal ambitions and goals are important, but if you want to be the one appreciated for the efforts – then you’d want to think again. As an entrepreneur, start-up founder you are the leader, content and appreciative of your teammates performances. Even if you have done half the work, do not expect people to acknowledge you for it, instead appreciate the efforts of the others in the team. This may not bring you short-term glory, but will bring you long-term success. You have to be a team person and lead from the front.

Wondering why this post does not cover things like: Be an expert in the problem you are trying to solve, connections & networking, experience, money, etc. etc?  That’s ‘coz I wanted to deal with some psychological, attitude & qualities based traits that are required for an entrepreneur. And most of it, as against the common belief, can be consciously cultivated for self-growth.

I think it’s important for an entrepreneur to be like a cockroach. Yea a roach! It can survive anywhere & it can pretend to be dead and come back up alive!

And Oh! I don’t think you need money to get started, nor do I think you need experience (generically understood as work experience) – you can be a fresher out of college or even a school kid to realize a pain-point to solve it. 

So, have you got what it takes to get started? Yes? Then, we’re looking for you! Read more.

Each of us have a Laxmi Bai in us!

Jao Rani yaad Rakhengey yeh krutagna Bharatwasi,
yeh tera balidaan jagavega Swatantrata avinasi,
hovey chup itihaas, lagey sachchai ko chahey phansi,
ho madmaati vijay, mitaa dey golon sey chahey Jhansi.
Tera Smarak tu hi hogi, tu khud amit nishaani thi,
Bundeley Harbolon key munh hamney suni kahani thi,
Khoob ladi mardani woh to Jhansi wali Rani thi
.

English Translation:

The people of India will remember this debt of yours (O! Rani Laxmibai), may you be blessed, dear Rani,
Your this life sacrifice will awake an indestructible soul of freedom in the people,
History may be made silent or if truth is hanged or killed, or if the drinkers become victorious or if they destroy jhansi with cannonballs,
You, by yourself be the memorial of Rani (queen of Jhansi) because you had been an eternal token of courage.
From the mouths of the Bandelas and the Harbolas (Religious singers of Bandelkhand), we heard the tale of the courage of the Queen of Jhansi relating how gallantly she fought like a man against the British intruders: such was the Queen of Jhansi.

(Read the whole poem with its translation here)

Image courtesy: http://oldpoetry.com//images/ext/Opoem/41/54.jpg

Rani Laxmibai, is one of the bravest Indian woman. I’ve grown up idolizing. I chose this last para of Jhansi Ki Rani Poem, with a reason. No, its not that I want far too many people to martyr their lives in war. I wanted to capture the spirit behind the act of bravery. The immortality Jhansi wali Rani has achieved today.

I have immense respect for all women, Indian in particular. In a society like ours, I think our grand mothers, mothers, mothers-in-law, sisters – all of them deserve to be applauded, as they’ve figured out excellent ways and methods to more than just survive, keep the families together, maintain economies, and much more! In a way, they all seem to have a natural ability to be good managers.

Deep inside my heart I wish for each of us to emerge as Laxmi Bai – fearless, raising above expectations & taking charge to resolving problems & issues. And hence the context to why I have the poem pasted up here!

With all that natural ability to manage, bootstrap, last longer – some of it perhaps hereditary or genetic to the Indian Woman. I think each one of us (Indian women) have the ability to be entrepreneurs. Some opt to lead simple lives, some have other priorities.

For all those who have had the right opportunity, education & more – I think, there is nothing lost by choosing entrepreneurship as a career option. Infact, as a woman (though I personally hated working for someone else) my life as an entrepreneur has given me the flexibility to do things better, organize my time further more & more recently as an entrepreneur-mom (I am confident that this was the right choice) – I get to spend maximum time with my child and experience her grow, and can manage my schedule in a manner that’s best for her! (Of course without compromising on my commitment to my venture)    

In the past two years and some months, as part of The Morpheus – I have interacted with innumerable entrepreneurs and want-to-be entrepreneurs. Among them, I can almost count the number of women entrepreneurs I’ve chanced upon. Its not that they do not exist, perhaps, I’ve not been fortunate to meet too many.

As part of The Morpheus, we want to work with & fund people who leave no tricks untried to bootstrap, innovate, survive, scale & stick-on to succeed. We (I personally) also want to work with women entrepreneurs, as I think they bring a different perspective, are better focused and can make faster decisions. Personally, adding more women to The Morpheus gang will definitely give the much required different perspective to problems / issues / concerns our portfolio faces on a daily basis.

So, if you are a woman (lady or a girl) who has an idea that you’ve been looking to get started with or have ventured out – Perhaps, you should connect with me. We are looking for entrepreneurs, particularly women entrepreneurs, who we can work with as part of our next Batch of BAP & support them with 5 lakh funding. More on that here

PS: This post focuses on women entrepreneurs, men are allowed to apply too, we have 27 companies in the portfolio, mostly dominated by men 😛

PPS: No, we treat all gender / sex equal, there are NO reservations 🙂