A great question that hovers around the mind of every Start Up enthusiast. Many business strugglers name Start Ups as a land of problems - I mean a quantified amount of problems. Either you are already in a business or planning to jump into the land of unseen potential. It’s all about a journey of uncertainty, travelling a distance less travelled or untraveled – It’s Entrepreneurship. But let’s understand Top 5 problems that each of thestartup encounters:1. Businessmodel Validation: What we think while modeling a business or in an excel sheet, might not sync while we get down to the ground. A major quantum of the problem is caused due to lack of proper validation of the idea. A pen & paper B- model might not get accepted by the customer thus creating many problems. A sample study of the model with the target market is advisable before dropping ourselves in the market.2. Competition: A new start up is always a kid in the land of huge, bully filled playground. Rival companies that are already in service in similar market to yours do have a competitive advantage. Their presence in the market for a longer time, high figure in market share, brand loyalty, intense market knowledge & degree of market acceptance makes life difficult for new start ups. But a new start up with a base of disruptive innovation will always have an edge over the older players.3. Lackof Funding: Majority don’t start a business stating that funding is a big problem. But one won’t realize that we start a business because we don’t have money - it’s quite funny isn’t it?? But the fact is we can’t make money unless we have some money at the beginning. Financial risk plays a huge part in small business, ensuring a constant cash flow to cover up the running cost.4. Acceptancefrom customers: Initially when your product/service is unknown to the public, the acceptance level of a new entity is a question at consumers’ level. Pushing out the first plot of services, bringing the first set of target customers, converting the prospects to a happy consumer became very difficult at the initial days. However all these are temporary as long as you have tested a sustainable product.5. Unavailabilityof previous data: Business decisions are often data driven and for a new business not having adequate data set keep them in the face of dilemma. Launching a new concept in the market or even for the business founders themselves with little knowledge of the Industry can be extremely hard to plan. But for a smart guy, we have our end customers to make the things done.Someone said, there are two important days in your life. One, the day you are born, and the other – When your realize Why you have born. Similarly if you are very clear with the solutions that you are offering to the society, these problems are just a DOT.
The only obsession to be in a good job, doing jobs and only jobs, getting better jobs in the good companies, the expectation to work in multi-national companies, dream to be in government jobs, to born, brought up and die with jobs are the acts of the jobholics. They can only see, think, imagine of doing jobs only, to work as paid employees only. I don’t have any problem with the jobs; after all, it gives me and us bread and butter. But, sometimes it hurts me when we are so highly obsessed with jobs that if we don’t get jobs we think it better to sit at home and eat away our parent’s money without thinking of alternatives. The parents are also equally responsible for making their children jobholics. So, the young generation can’t think or imagine a world without or beyond jobs. In absence of a job or with no-jobs they prefer to remain jobless and unemployed, but can’t go for alternative career options. We are born and brought up with such ideas, persuasions and when a child is born the parents start planning, “my son is going to be an engineer only, my daughter is going to be a doctor” and they spoon-feed their children to be doctors and Engineers only when there are a lot of options available, and what about their passions, their interests. I have seen many teenagers suffering from such problems. Some of my juniors have shared their unhappiness with me saying that “I wanted to be a banker, a singer, a painter, but our parents forced us to study Engineering which I don’t like at all”. In the later stage, they have left that Engineering jobs to start banking careers or they have joined the careers of their choices. I feel that parents should guide their children, encourage them to study hard, but they shouldn't impose on them what they supposed to be, it’s purely a personal decision. And the children should enjoy full freedom choosing the career of their preferences; allow them to grow with their dreams, passions, allow them to be a singer, a dancer, a painter, an actor, a teacher, an agropreneur and a journalist. If the children follow their passions and nurtured with their talents, skills, and passions they will grow and fly high and would be successful in life. It will make them happy from within and that is the true meaning of life. Then they will be able to contribute their best to the societySimilarly, job should not be the only option left to the children, the parents should encourage their children to be business tycoons, entrepreneurs, industrialists, not only to be the jobholders but also be the job creators and why 10am to 6 pm job only where no holidays, extra hours of work, non-cooperative colleagues, foul play by co-workers, diplomatic boss and handling all these we develop anxiety and stress which leads to fatal diseases among the youths these days. Long hours of sitting in front of the computers and working like machines make them diseased & unhealthy. Can’t we think of job creations, giving jobs to others? After all, we find that most of the successful people are among the top business tycoons like Tata, Birla, Ambani, and Adani who are big entrepreneurs. If they were thinking of doing jobs only they would not have created the most demanding huge jobs markets for the youths in India and abroad. We should come out of that stereotypes and not only to get jobs but also creating jobs for others should be our motto. In our country people have a typical mindset pertaining to jobs, they only know to give respect to people with high-level jobs and even if a businessman is earning much more than that person he doesn’t get the same respect from the people. Similarly, people with highly established jobs want their children to follow the same pattern even if their wards are not good at studies, if their children don’t get expected jobs and decide to start business careers they are mocked by their friends and relatives, i.e. “what? Son of Mr.X, going to sell clothes and I have seen this happening in my family also. We never appreciate the business, entrepreneurial activities, and the youths without getting any support from their parents and family members being frustrated, being stressed start doing all the wrong things. It not only leads to unemployment but also poverty. Entrepreneurship must be promoted, the parents must understand its significance, and youths must be oriented to follow it as alternative career options. One entrepreneur can give jobs to many unemployed youths. Like American teens don't get pressurized to follow a trend or a career path, our Indian teens should not be pressurized in any case. In America, they know each one of them is different from each other and they designed to do things differently. So they are free to choose their career paths. They do part-time jobs for running their expenditures and they don’t judge the work you do. But here parents will decide whether their children should go for Medical or Engineering. That is the reason they are called developed countries. Hence, in our country the youths should be encouraged to follow the careers of their choices, there should be no compulsions. Similarly, entrepreneurship must be promoted among the youths to make our country developed, rich, and to ensure adequate employment opportunities are available for the unemployed mass.
StoryMirror interviewed Bringle Academy that are striking to bring a learning revolution. Here is what they have to say.Tell us about your journey and why BRINGLE started?India is relatively young as a nation with around 28 million youth population being added every year. There is a surge in the implementation of educational technologies for improving student learning. Education is both the means as well as the end to a better life: the means because it empowers an individual to earn his/her livelihood and the end because it increases one's awareness on a range of issues – from healthcare to appropriate social behaviour to understanding one's rights – and in the process help him/her evolve as a better citizen. Doubtless, education is the most powerful catalyst for social transformation. But child education cannot be done in isolation.Thus began the idea of bridging the gap between education and skills development in 2016. We strive to transform lessons into engaging student-centered, active learning experiences. We began our journey of combining technology with education at Thane, Maharashtra with one center. Our main focus was quaint computer courses and six sigma green and black belt courses.We found our purpose when a young adult with cerebral palsy joined us to learn computers. It was a challenging situation for us to alter our pedagogy and create a learning environment for him. Perhaps most importantly, educators should demonstrate a great deal of emotional support and patience and utilize effective teaching strategies for students with cerebral palsy. Providing positive academic feedback, assisting students in developing friendships with general education peers, and communicating frequently with parents and therapists are all ways that teachers can inspire confidence and success in students with cerebral palsy. Being a catalyst for a Cerebal Palsy dreamer to fulfill his dreams has been our biggest reward so far.Bringle Academy strives to bring a learning revolution, with our core philosophy of ‘Growing with Grace’, which can be achieved through self-improvement and skill enhancement. We constantly thrive on nature’s principal, that ‘learning never stops’, therefore our programs are designed for all age groups and professions. We have even extended our reach to housewives and senior citizens as well. We seek out the best thinkers in an area, and form collaborative networks to work together and bring about transformation. Finally, we share our work with others so it will have the greatest possible impact.Explain us your model and its features.We researched 300+ EdTech platforms & institutes to identify the loop holes and scope of improvement in current education system. After intensive brain storming for 2 Years our team of experts identified key areas to bring disruptive innovation in education space. We developed a robust & effective framework and filed a patent for the same in Dec 2017. We collaborated with various Brand Partners to add value to our initiative. We adopt Lean Six Sigma DMAIC methodology in all our centers followed by Data Analytics to ensure the continuous improvement in 3 aspects1. SkillProfiling - Career Counselling through Expert Counsellors & Psychologists2. Safety-Index - Keeping a Child Safe (#NearMiss Reporting)3. Career Progression - Holistic Development Monitoring & developing parents, Teachers, Students ConnectK12 After School Skills Development Centers:Our platform aims to provide holistic development of students, which enable them to learn at a faster pace and apply logical & analytical skills in getting their homework done without any additional support. We call it, Master beyond Academics (MBA4Kids).Features of MBA4Kids:1. Home Work / Project Work / Academics Support & Tuitions2. Unique Skill Profile for each student to monitor the intellectual growth. These Skill Profiles are shared with parents to develop an inclusive ecosystem.3. Additional classes including Language classes, Extra-curricular, Sports, Hobby classes and training programs will be conducted depending upon the infrastructure. We are also looking forward to Day/Night Care facilities.We have partnered with some of the major brands in PR, Branding, Sales & Marketing, Operations, Technology, Content Development, Studio Partners, Operational Excellence, Customer Service, Fund Raising, Intellectual Property, B2B Sales, Govt. Institutions and few more.Bringle Academy adopts advanced technology to make learning interesting and easier. Our core competencies are Personality Development, Creative Thinking, Logical Reasoning & Decision Making skills which make students future ready. Our USP is our Innovative pedagogy, Data based decisions, Inclusive environment & Never-Ending desire to disrupt the education space.Curriculum, Timings & ModelDedicated virtual platform on Career Counselling, Skills Development & Placements accessible to each center. We enable Parents to choose the right time slots for their children. These programs will be certification based and add value to the learning process of students. We would extend our support to differently-abled workforce by our skill development programs.Whom are you mainly targeting?Education interventions promise a wide range of potential benefits: increased economic growth; higher rates of societal production; quicker adoption of technological change; development of government and business leaders; improved health; empowering women; and the intrinsic value of education. Our 8 Target Segments are:1. School Students2. College Students3. Corporate Professionals4. Housewives5. Differently-Abled6. Entrepreneurs 7. School-Dropouts8. TrainersWe constantly thrive on nature’s principal, that ‘learning never stops’, therefore our programs are designed for all age groups and professions. Brief us about your team.Mr. Anshav Jain: - A Mumbai based Chemical Engineering Graduate with more than 15 yrs. of Corporate & Entrepreneurship Experience, with 4+ Tech Start-ups, Mentoring and Investing in dozens of other startups. Founder of 4 companies including a section 8 company and Certified Lean 6 Sigma MBB & PMP professional, 5 Large Corporate Power Houses exposure (Ambanis, Tatas, Ruias, Satyam & WNS), 3+ Tech Portals, 5+ Brands & Campaigns, 3+ Social Initiatives on Child Education (including Special Children), Women Empowerment & Men Rights, Mentoring a couple of dozens Startups with a presence in 10+ Global locations in last 1800+ years.Ms. Sharmila Divatia: - An MBA in Operations & M.Sc. in Mathematics with 29 Years of experience in IT Industry. Recipient of Smt. Suniti Devi Singhania Award for Outstanding Disabled (Female) from NASEOH. Served as Member, Board of Directors of Association for Rehabilitation under National Trust Initiative of Marketing [National Trust for the welfare of persons with Autism, Cerebral Palsy, Mental Retardation and Multiple Disabilities is under the aegis of Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India] from April 2008 to March 2011.Served as Member, Board of Directors of National Trust for the welfare of people with autism, cerebral palsy, mental retardation and multiple disabilities, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India April 2005 to March 2008.Tell us about how you combine technology with education.Integrating technology in education helps students stay engaged. Most students today have been using mobile devices like tablets and smartphones to play and learn since they could crawl. So it only seems logical to align today's classrooms with the way that your students want and are used to learning. Enabling students to think independently, to form their own ideas which they can then communicate through a creative process is one of the prime focus areas of Bringle Academy.Technology transforms the learning experience. Students have access to an incredible amount of new opportunities. From learning how to code to learning how to better collaborate across teams and with their instructors--technology empowers students to be more creative and be more connected. New tech has super-charged how we learn today.Our Technology Associations:Complete Learning Management Solution with 10000+ usersMobile application based Interactive platform for better work flowDedicated Job portal with HRM (5000+ profiles / 10+ employers / 150+ vacancies)Employability & Mapping Mobile Application to monitor job based parameters. Multiple categories within a single applicationDetailed Job description and communication channelSkills development magazineCompetitive Exam Preparation portalDedicated Analytics System to monitor real-time developmentCombination of Blended learning, Content Curation, Private Chats, Attendance Management, Fees Management for a Complete Learning PlatformWe adopt scientifically proven DMIT approach (Multiple Intelligence Test) based on Dermatoglyphics, Genetics, Embryology, Psychology and Neuroscience.Skill Profiling based on – Cognitive Aptitude & Psychometric TestAffiliated collaborations for programming languages – Python, Java, C, C++, HaskellDedicated Labs for – Physics, Chemistry & Soft SkillsPreparation Module with 3500+ users for Competitive Exams – IITJEE, PMT, BITSAT, GMAT and more.Content Partners : Udemy, Edureka, Coursera, Skillzpot, Cisco, Quickstart, PAL India, Lil Open Courses, Star IT TechnologiesRecruitment Partners: JobsForHer, Glassdoor, Post Job Free, Linkedin, Indeed, Job Inventory and many more.How do you want to see the company in next 5 years?Technology is already sweeping through classrooms as educators and developers create more and more products designed to enhance education. New technologies like AI, machine learning, and educational software aren't just changing the field for students, they're shaking up the role of educators, creating philosophical shifts in approaches to teaching, and remodelling the classroom.With an influx of new learning models available, traditional educational methods are bound to evolve in the next decade.Our growth plan is to establish 10 dedicated National Centers and international presence in 9 Countries in order to spread this movement at a global level.National:1. Pune2. Mumbai3. Vadodara4. Surat5. Ahmedabad6. Kolkata7. Delhi NCR8. Hyderabad9. Bangalore10. ChennaiInternational:1. USA2. UK3. UAE4. Philippines5. Malaysia6. Singapore7. Australia8. New Zealand9. AfricaGet in touch with them at firstname.lastname@example.orgVisit their website here https://bringleacademy.com/You can also connect with them on LinkedIn and Facebook.
StoryMirror interviewed Viral Thakker and spoke about his venture eBZaar. Here is what he has to say.Q. Tell us about yourself and your backgroundI (Viral Thakker) have 13 years of corporate experience (prior to starting up), primarily as a corporate banker (Relationship Manager) working at ICICI, HSBC and JPMorgan amongst others and managing a portfolio of Fortune 500 companies, top 10 Indian Conglomerates and top 10 PSUs. After completing my Chartered Accountant course, I had a stint in internal & process audits, though business (sales) was always my calling. Audit happened by chance (or brutally put for incorrect guidance and then lack of opportunity) and a Sales role was by choice. My last role was an Executive Director at JPMorgan providing Trade Finance and Working Capital Loan solutions to clients North and East India markets.I also have 20yrs+ of experience as a grocery retailer, in a family business. Have first-hand experience as a milk delivery boy to procurement, selling at the cash counter, keeping track of margins, SKUs, what inventory to push and how to build a loyal customer base built on customer service and trust.Q.What is your life's greatest dream?To be atop Mount Everest and to travel the world. Q. What's is your business all about?eBZaar.com sells fruits, grocery, mithai, cakes, flowers, meat, sea food etc. eBZaar.com makes daily shopping easy and rewarding for the consumer. While daily shopping has many inconveniences, it is no secret that customers love their local stores who provide the right quality, the right products and the right price points. eBZaar empowers these local stores to come online. We provide them a free of cost digital store to help them sell to online customers. At the same time, customers get to buy all their varied grocery at one place, in an online avatar and with all conveniences of online shopping added. In other words, it customers are buying from a real world store but without the need to visit the store.Q. What are its main features and USP?The main feature is that eBZaar allows customers to shop from her own stores - that same quality, same price, same reliability. But now that her life is digital, she also sees the store in her digital world, available 24X7, better price discovery, improved product discovery and a uniform shopping experience.As soon as customer enters the platform, she inputs delivery address and her nearby stores are shown to her. She selects the store, shops from the store and checks out.We simply build upon the loyalty and trust that a customer already has with her favourite local store and add the digital layer; you can say we bring back the choice of products, quality and price points back to the customer; a factor that many large ecommerce offerings overlook.eBZaar also ensures that only your well known and trusted stores are on-boarded onto its platform, yes we have a curation process. This has been one of the success factors in our internal metrics which perform better then some industry averages.Q. What inspires you?To make a mark, to leave a legacy, to not give up, to make it happen – that is very inspiration to me. Sports stories and war stories of fighting out the odds inspires me. Towards, I see Entrepreneurship as an opportunity to make a real world large impact, to make the world a better place. And retail transformation is a chosen space due to my background.Entrepreneurship was always lurking as part of my aspiration as much as banking as a career. As I set about doing my research, I figured that the technology space was evolving rapidly, the big tech eComm players were becoming big, offering huge discounts to force customers to move online. The rate of technology adoption by consumers has been much higher compared to a retail stores. I realized that the retailer has failed to keep pace in the embracing technology, and if this continued, it will become a matter of survival for them.From the context of running a family grocery business for 25 years, I obviously had a lot of passion for this segment, and pull of retail was inherent in my thought process. I could feel and see their potential pain, this was most inspiration as I quit JPMorgan to set out on my own.The shopkeepers or the banyas are otherwise a very smart set of people. Sooner or later, they’d realise the need for online strategy. We decided to make this as our mission - to bring back parity between the tech savvy online consumers and the lesser evolved local stores, connecting them both on a single online platform. The obvious question was: What if I could add a layer of technology to create convenience on top of the existing trust and goodwill already built by the local kirana stores? Thus eBZaar was conceived. Beyond mere survival, it helps local retailer to also compete effectively in the digital world. I had always wanted to grow our family business manifold in to a big organised set of retail stores, after all as a Gujarati, business is in my DNA. And so our mission was formed, a mission of connecting a 100 thousand stores to more then 10million customers in next few years, using tech & online marketing for the digital transformation in retailQ. How do you want to see yourself 5 years from now?eBZaar is on a mission to connect million of stores of 100 million online customers in a few years time. While our current focus in Mumbai – the home market, in 5 years we should have completed our roll out to top 15 cities. Apart, we are working on a few additional tech products to create the desired transformational impact on the retail segment.Find them on Facebook.com/ebzaar , Instagram, twitter and google+.