|Vijay Ram Kumar, Founder of Hoverr @ UnPluggd|
Here is the bootstrapped story of Wingify, an A/B testing company built by Paras, who learnt programming early in his life, but chose to major in biotechnology because he wanted to learn something new. Wow! that’s a cool attitude. He got inspired by Paul Graham’s essays, listed all his interests on a piece of paper, picked the top one and went on to startup.
- Focus on prototyping instead of pitching.
- Sales is a serious business and it should be sales, sales and sales in the first year.
- The first sales person is really important and one simple way to hire him is by looking at his past performance.
- Talk to potential customers. Persuade. People are always ready for a cup of coffee.
- Investors are not always right.
- Focus. You are in the drivers seat and can’t take your eyes off the road ever. There is no room for distractions.
- Laying emphasis on being very frugal, Manav reflected Warren Buffet’s quote “If you buy things you don’t need, soon you will have to sell things you need.”
- Your company is only as good as your writing. Take risks.
- Focus on cash flow. Bring in paying customers without delay.
- Create a team who can run as fast as you.
- Scale the product along with continuous improvement.
- Put all the money back into the product initially. Invest in R&D.
- Outperform on the promises. Delighted customer is a multi million dollar marketing campaign.
- Hiring across continent is a biggest leap of faith for an entrepreneur. Get the top notch sales people.
- You might not win every battle, you ll have to find the perfect fit.
Sanjay Swamy, Managing Partner at AngelPrime while talking on doing business with large companies, said:
- Research your customer well. Associate with someone who wants to be no. 1.
- Offer something that the customer can’t get anywhere else.
- Test the market early. Do not keep the idea an ultra secret. That will not help.
- One way of approaching a probable partner is to find a rising star in a large company who is ready to take risk to prove himself and proceeding through him.
- Very soon go for paid pilots, build relationships and establish processes.
- Sign an NDA as early as possible and be serious about each other.
- Have a good cop and a bad cop to tackle issues with customers.
- Maintain the exclusivity and advantage over pricing.
Aprameya said TaxiForSure was a serendipity and I later found that they have even named their company as Serendipity Infolabs. Being hands on has helped them develop the back-end system and he stressed on the importance of being frugal so as to achieve more with less. On being asked on how he had changed to suit the needs of the business, he said he learnt to speak the language of operators, with whom they collaborate with.
- Be a hustler.
- “When I’m old and dying, I plan to look back on my life and say “wow, that was an adventure,” not “wow, I sure felt safe.” Tom Preston-Werner.
- Be opportunistic.
- Be tenacious.
- “Stay Hungry, Stay Foolish” – Steve Jobs.
- Be open to partnerships.
- Charge your customers. Charge you customers higher.
- Focus on inbound marketing & organic growth. People, Product, Culture.
This space/air-time, which can be shared between the state and central government proportionately on daily or weekly basis, can be used to impart moral education, educate people on social issues and create awareness on legal matters and government policies. The government can use this to proactively disclose information on issues of larger public interest, which in some cases can reduce the number of RTI applications and also avoid harassment of RTI applicants.
Also, this space/air-time can be used to sensitise people on various frauds/scams and the modus operandi of scamsters. Preventing people from getting cheated will spare a lot of liquid cash which can be a growth booster rather than that money getting converted as black money.
Moreover, the government and politicians, most times spend lavishly to inaugurate new schemes or infrastructure facilities. Availability of such newspaper space or air-time can also be used to declare open any new schemes/infrastructures, which in turn will save money for the government, prevent chaos and traffic jams and save time for a lot of people including the government.
The newspaper space can sometimes be used to publish large scale tenders, which to some extent can prevent corruption in allotting tenders.
Publications of all such kind will create better informed and educated citizens and over the long run will pave way for a peaceful and better society.
which I have tweaked and adapted from Martin Luther King Jr’s quote
“If a man is called to be a street sweeper, he should sweep streets even as Michelangelo painted, or Beethoven composed music, or Shakespeare wrote poetry. He should sweep streets so well that all the hosts of heaven and earth will pause to say, here lived a great street sweeper who did his job well.”
Here is a compilation of a check list for travel. Most importantly, please read the post script.
- Get your FX Cheat Sheet
- Read the Travel Advisory for your destination
- Health Documentation
- Transportation Tickets
- Emergency Information
- Hotel Reservations
- Traveller’s Checks
- Credit/Debit Cards
- Guide Books and Maps
- Trip Cancellation/Medical Insurance
- Personal Identification
- Driver’s License
- Photocopies of Documentation
- Special Event Reservations (art, popular festivals, sporting events)
- Mobile Phone/Charger
- Camera/Video Camera/Charger
- Luggage/Travel Pack
- Luggage ID Tags
- Waist/Neck Pouch
- Travel Clothing (Formals, Casuals)
- Shorts, Tees, pair of Jeans, Innerwear
- Rain Protection
- Travel Footwear
- Visor or Brimmed Hat
- Water Bottle
- Language Books
- Reading Materials
- Address Book
- Travel Journal/Notepad
- Games/Playing Cards
- Travel Lock
- Flashlight Batteries/Bulb
- Swiss Army Knife
- Matches or Lighter
- Camera Batteries
- Mini Sewing/Repair Kit
- Duct Tape
- Portable Travel Iron or Steamer
- Travel Clothesline & Clothespins
- Sink Stopper for Hotel Sinks
- Mesh Bag for Dirty Laundry
- Zip close Plastic Bags
- Comb/Hair Brush
- Toothbrush/Paste/Brush Cap
- Cleaner/Dental Floss
- Soap: Personal and Laundry
- Shaving Cream/Brush
- Insect Repellent
- Skin Care Lotions/Creams
- Make Up
- Nail Clippers
- Sunscreen/Lip Balm
- Travel Towel
- Blow Dryer
- Bottles (for shampoo & laundry soap)
- Stop deliveries
- Have Post Office hold mail
- Arrange for care of pets, lawn and house plants
- Set-up a timed lighting system
- Check timed night lighting system
- Notify local police of your absence
- Leave house key and trip itinerary with a neighbour
- Empty refrigerator
- Eliminate possible fire hazards (unplug appliances, etc.)
- Turn down thermostat
- Turn off water heater
- Store valuables in a safe place
- Lock all doors and windows
FIRST AID KIT
- Cotton, Wool
- Bandage Cloth
- Band Aid
- Crepe Bandage
- Gauze Pad
- Small Scissors
- Aspirin/Pain Reliever
- Cough Syrup
- Povidone Iodine
- Savlon Antiseptic
- Antibiotic Cream
- Medication for Allergies, Diarrhoea, Cold, Acidity
- Medication for Motion Sickness
- Medication for Malaria
- Contact Lens Preparation
- Water Purification System
- Prescription Drugs, Doctors Phone No., Fax no.
PS: Pack light & smart 🙂
As the world celebrates Women’s Day and India celebrates Holi, I feel so proud and gratified to write about these ladies who apart from my mother, stood by me in times of distress, guided me to wade through troubled waters and added colours to my life.
My darling sister(first cousin) Ms. Kalaivani
My college buddy Ms. Lina
My English Prof., Mentor and God Mother Ms. Charumathi
My colleague and a lovely buddy Ms. Kiruthika
…to be continued