My experience in advising a start-up

A business associate with whom I have been running a non-profit consisting of boring projects  for last ten years (see footnote) wanted to start a new venture – an e-commerce venture. The venture is to sell astrological gems online.The nature of the venture is not important. What I found important is how the ‘advisory’ can be made so portable in application. 

Funding 

Since the time of Hammurabi, a successful business was built by a person or a group from scratch and through years and generations. It  had a locus and a spread. The business generated funds, re-invested and grew. Most entrepeneurs till today followed this hard, tough, un-romantic, long but sure and simple route.

Not anymore…

Every start-up now wants to grow expnonetially. They want to behave like a star formation. High gravity attracting investors, more subscribers, burning cash in a dazzling manner, losing money in as profliagte a manner as a teenager loses semen and waiting for that moment when the business will make everyone rich beyond dreams. 

My first advice to the start-up founder : Be traditional. Be rather ancient. Better still – be paleological in your business model. 

Product Strategy 

Product : gemstones. 

Who made this ? : Nature or the Supreme Lord of the Nature, i.e. God.

Who uses it ? : Sons and daughters of the same Supreme Lord. Men and women.

Where are they ? : Everywhere

What is the cost ?  As in the market

What is the price ? : Cost  of gemstones + Cost to connect + Cost to deliver + Sustenance to bear cost 

What is the profit : Sustenance + some extra for rainy day. (say 20% of sustenance)

Competition 

There is no competition. Competition happens between two perfectly equal things. No two businesses are neither exactly equal nor perfect nor equally imperfect. 

If you do not have some edginess, the thought would not have occured. 

Marketing Stratgey 

Tell clearly, honestly, brutally and in the simplest of way the following sentence :

I am a new entrant in this area. I have found out the following competences I have, some of which are to be tested

1…

2…

3…

4…

I shall remain absolutely honest and I am doing this not for any of the following reasons 

a. To attract venture funding

b. To become a great business man / woman

c. To become a celebrity

d. To earn in GDP like thing and then retire and relax

e. To be a household name in the galaxy

Then, why am I doing this :

To have a modest, pure and legitimate earning to sustain myself in a modest manner and to be a trust-signed memory in every business relationship, including my customers. 

I am prone to failures and mistakes but I shall not cheat grossly or subtly. so help me God. 

Break Even

In 3 to 6 months. Since you are not having  the occult doctrine of first burning profuse quantities of other people’s money and then transmuting the smoke into bigger and larger money in the future directive of time, violating the first and second law of thermodynamics, you have to respect the cosmic law. Sow, Work, Harvest. We would have been all dead by now if agriculturists followed the 5 year break-even doctrine of valuation models. 

Mission, Vison, Values

Non-cheating, Non-Cheating, Non-cheating

Corporate Social Responsibility 

To produce joy in work. Not anxiety with hard labour.

Succession 

In the long term, we are all dead.

Sustainability 

If you are reading this now, remember a time when you were 3 hours old and you needed a very special kind of food. The food was ready and it was the best food for you and your mother must have felt while nursing you a sense of cosmic motherliness. 

Your very thinking of sustainability is unsustainable. Drop the most unsustainable thing. If the system could sustain you since you were 3 hours old, you need not bother. There are much much expert entities working on this issue. 

Quality

Quality comes from association. Nothing else will work. Associate with quality people and institutions. If you are unable to find them or connect, pray to the Lord. He will make arrangements to connect you with them. This will happen. You will be awe-struck by the miracle. You will be quali-fied. 

Growth 

If your business ensures that you are eating and sleeping joyfully while doing your business, you are growing. Be absolutely assured. Rest are all delusions. 

Change Management 

Change management is a hoax and a fraud. The most worrisome change is getting old, getting diseases of old age and dying. No change management can work permanently. Why bother with the intermediate issues. See competition.

Client Retention 

In a train in a jungle, suppose you smelt a fragrance of a flower that grew in your yard when you were a boy of ten years. Did you connect ? Did the flower send you multi-channel engagement mails ? Did it send you newsletter ?

Purity is the greatest engager. Even hardened crimnals love their young children. Why ? Because of the purity of a baby’s face.  The very purity of your business will retain all good customers. See sustainability.

Implementation 

As a first class business builder, you are already successful. There is no external certification needed. For the less intelligent, the time valley needs to be plain and then the success will be clearer to them.

Start working for your business and radiate purity and peace. 

Aham hi sarva-yagyanam Bhoktra-ham prabhureba cha

[ The Blessed Lord said : I am the Lord and Master of all sacrifices ]

Start your buisiness with the Supreme Lord as your Venture Capitalist.

Your business will be the greatest adventure of your life and beyond.

Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevayya 

 

* The non-profit is my marriage with Chandrani a decade back and non-profit we have been running is the family now consiting of two partly owned subsidiaries : two young boys 9 and 3 years old. 

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