MIDWIFING SUCCESSFUL STARTUPS! PART III
An average nation with plenty of potential doesn’t attain supremacy as an intellectual One-and-Only unless its people learn to reach out to one another talent-wise. It’s not enough that ordinary men and women learn to do so but those that have the knowhow, the invention or discovery must learn to reach out to those that have fire in their bellies enough to DO something with that knowhow and benefit society as well as themselves!
Reaching out to a promising entrepreneur doesn’t come easy for mentally fossilized bureaucrats and severely intellectual scientists here; both inhabit their own pet universes without thinking much about their larger obligations towards a GREAT India!
I understood this recently at an exhibition from a young scientist at a CSIR-funded Regional Research Laboratory. Such eggheads and R&D specialists can’t alone take the nation forward. It’s imperative that their knowhow trickles down to grassroots level through business firms that can make their inventions popular among the people.
YES, this is one of India’s major lapses when it comes to her Start-up-Stand Up initiative!
Isn’t it undeniable that India does have hundreds of laboratories making discoveries and inventions and manufacture-worthy gadgets all the year round?
Aren’t many colleges also coming out with various useful inventions? How come these don’t reach out to the common man?
How is it that the person that invents something doesn’t really benefit from doing so?
If you care for a moment to think of the initial challenges of an entrepreneur you feel like helping him out and putting your own shoulder to his wheel but it’s not easy in this country! Not only the bank manager that disburses a piffling amount as working capital but also the parents of the person concerned with their vinegar faces dampen and discourage any creative professionally qualified son or smart well skilled daughter from pursuing a business line.
Indeed India’s biggest challenge is her antiquated regulations standing in the way of anyone pursuing a business dream easily and smoothly.
YES, Ease of Doing Business -including the Permit to do business- is a formidable challenge here!
India has not learned from Red China how to smoothen the way for a budding entrepreneur at all.
(In China you apply for land and power to start a business—lo! And you get 100 times that areas plus all the facilities that you can dream of to do so within 72 hours flat!).
Here we are encumbered and embroiled within a huge mesh of 19th century colonial laws and numerous regulations –both those put in place before India gained her freedom to help the colonial power monitor business activity inland and also to impose taxes as it thought fit plus those added later by early Congress-led ministries in order to nurture what they all liked- earning extra money through bribery and corruption in giving out Permits and Licenses!!
EYELESS IN GAZA?
Every startup wishes to be propped up in the first few weeks and months by a panel of veteran professionals to be able to go through the teething problems.
Take the case of Affordable Housing, so intrinsic to the infrastructure in this nation. Imagine Ms. Susan, a civil engineer, getting into this realm with a capital to the tune of Rs 15 lakhs.
Imagine she wishes to erect houses for the commoner on a budget of Rs 5 lakhs. She has the standard design, say, by N.Mahesh, a veteran engineer here in Trivandrum, who recently designed such a house—600 sq.ft in area– within a Rs 4.65 lakh budget. Still, she is going to need some help from someone long used to constructing houses till she can take off on her own.
Will she be automatically registered as a responsible builder that is trustworthy by some government agency?
Will any CEO of a major construction firm send her a suitable assistant for a few days? Or will such a person visit the site and give her some helpful advice? Or will she get a gift subscription to a magazine for builders? Can the local church help her? How much will her own community rise to her dire need for a helping hand?
Bear in mind that, given the prevailing ambiance in this country, most startups have but family support at best in the initial crucial phases. The young men and women that have been bold enough to father forth such enterprises feel like blind people left in the middle of Gaza desert!
Yes, this lack of support is also a serious deeply frustrating issue!
A CHANGED ‘CAN-DO’ MODALITY!
Now, for a change from the above conventional approach, let’s espouse a CAN-DO one!
Imagine an India where ALL young persons are well employed in some manner-as businessmen, businesswomen, entrepreneurs, and otherwise. Imagine 100 % engagement and employment, so NO time is available for lounging or time wasting!
Imagine every professional college-both engineering and medicine-asking final year students to think of going along a business route of sorts instead of abiding by the overused Apply-Apply-No Reply job searching routine!
Those that fall in with this idea get interviewed by a panel comprising a few of their own teachers, angel investors, venture capitalists, Incubation Cell experts!
Some of them get campus-selected as promising entrepreneurs; they are then groomed to succeed in their chosen lines BEFORE they graduate through weekend class sessions and skill acquisition.
Medical students are imparted familiarity with the latest super-specializations to choose from—e.g. Ultra Sound Scanning, Brain Imaging, Nuclear medicine, Brain Surgery, In Utero Surgery–and the latest medical gadgets to recommend for varied conditions –and then then given the skills to start out on their own as practitioners!
Then they get interviewed by bankers individually and promised an advance amount to materialize their dream!
Local advertisers and publicists, are introduced to them so they can publicize whichever details of their facility they wish to tell the public in real time without delay. Technical help is offered to help have sales teams for products too. Data science driven insights about the performance of the products launched are offered through sites like http://www.pipecandy.in!
Result: More individual fulfillment, more startup industries in the small cap realm and less crowding in the job fairs!!
More medical diagnostic facilities, more health informatics research centers and more local clinics!
More improvement in lifestyle at any location, more facilities for getting expert service, and more economic and financial growth!
Isn’t THIS what you and I would so dearly wish for in this country?
All that is required is for every college to have a Placement Officer with a go-getter mentality!
None of this is happening now at any college or university efficiently anyway to my knowledge and information! All that is happening is 100% Campus Recruitment as Apprentice Engineers or as Junior Doctors!
Let me give a friendly tip to the women that read this:
Here are the ten career lines suggested by http://www.useyourideas.com,(a US website that encourages women to remain well earning at all times) for your good: Content Writing, Handmade Products, Cooking and Delivery, Tuition Classes, Beauty parlor, Health Circle/Fitness center, Fashion product outlet, Interior Designing, Blogging/Publishing, and Insurance agency!
DO we have in India any similar site dedicated to the wellbeing of our womenfolk?
In Part IV of this series we shall take a bird’s eye view of some individual sabotaging factors!