My plunge into Start-ups

This brilliant Ad about how Housing created it’s logo takes me back by almost a decade.

The video itself has a nice peppy feel to it, and then there is hope … hope and enthusiasm of starting something afresh.

My Story

In the summer of 2006, I had graduated from IIM-Indore and joined one of the largest Indian IT firms in their pre-sales and bid management teams. Life at first was exciting and I was more than happy to learn how to go about pricing large scale IT Implementations. Over the next 6-7 months, I realized that the task is fairly process driven and as long as you (or anyone for that matter) could stick to the process, the job got done!

I guess that’s how organizations scale, moving from people to process to finally automated processes using technology. However, as a person, it made me feel redundant. The task that I was doing was also being done by a 100 other graduates in the same firm … and my additional education was not helping me do things in any better manner. I was keeping a track of my contributions to the organization and although that number was fairly significant, it really did not translate into any rewards or recognition for myself as an individual.

Well, I could always say that the work in itself was the reward! However, I did not feel like I was making a sufficient impact (for the organization, for the customer or for my fellow colleagues). This was about the same time when classmates of mine were facing similar challenges (across other IT firms!).

Till that point of time, life was more or less figured out. Work with this large firm for 5 years, cash out the ESOPs (they had just gone for an IPO in the year we joined). Go on-site and work in Account Management roles.

This was when fellow classmates hatched an idea about doing something of our own. However, that meant taking a sufficient risk and risk losing this momentum. It also meant, that once you fall back off a horse, it might become difficult to get onto the same horse again.

#StartANewLife

Starting something new involved multiple changes. Shifting to a new city being one of them.

Starting over in Hyderabad meant a lot of things –

  • Giving up on the ease of IT Life. No more 5 day work week and 9 to 5 (literally) jobs.
  • Toning down on expenditure and storing some for those rainy days.
  • Explaining to friends and family about why the risk is necessary and the drastic step that needed to be taken

That was about a decade back. Since then in the past years, I have been involved with multiple start-ups, building and promoting products for them. So much so that folks know me as a start-up guy. Had I not decided to jump into start-ups and just live the IT life, my life would have been totally different.