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What changes do you wish to see in the Indian society?

The Preamble of the Indian Constitution proclaims the solemn resolution of the people of India to constitute the nation into a “Sovereign Socialist Secular Democratic Republic”. As an Indian, I’d like to see India just as envisaged by the framers of our Constitution.

Even after 70 years of independence, India is still a developing country. The main reason for this is unemployment. Certainly, it’s not possible for the Government to provide employment to 125 crore Indians. It is the responsibility of each and every Indian to earn a livelihood by fair means.
What India needs today is an intense scientific advancement. To accomplish this, more and more parents are providing their wards with a good education. Students are choosing science stream after 10th. Many of them are following the course of Engineering after 12th. Over the years, the no. of Engineers(both B.Tech and Polytechnic) in the Indian society has undergone a rise. It is no more possible for the Government as well as Industrialists to provide each and every one of them with jobs. Someone has rightfully said, “Engineers in India should not be job seekers, they should be job creators.” From here, the story of an Engineer-Entrepreneur begins. If an Engineer is able to startup, he’ll not only be able to solve the problem of his own unemployment, but also distribute employment to many. There are only a few notable startups in India at present times. I hope one day, there will be no unemployment problem in India, provided people can provide jobs to themselves through Entrepreneurship.
It is said that the development of a nation can be measured by taking a glance at the Olympics Medal Tally. The concept is odd to hear but is true. Although India has a huge population, India has been unable to achieve much success at the Olympics. It’ll be wrong to say that India doesn’t have a knack for sports. India has secured the first position in cricket since the Indian youth have worshiped cricket. My question is why only cricket? Why not football, hockey, polo, handball, gymnastics etc? If Indians get involved in sports, India can surely secure a good position in the Olympic Medal Tally. To divert the attention of Indians from Cricket to other sports, we have to promote those sports. Here comes the role of a sports entrepreneur. A sports entrepreneur will open sports hubs wherever he can, where different types of international sports like High Jump, Ice Hockey, Water Polo, etc will be taught. The raw talent can be sieved, who will glorify our nation at International Sports Events. The idea is the Industrialization of Sports will give rise to will give rise to immense employment in the country. The experienced sportsmen/sportswomen will coach the youth, and sieve the talent. In this process, 2 birds(unemployment and disappointing medal tally) will be killed with one stone( industrialization of sports).
startupsplash
Most of the electronic goods(mobile phones, TV sets, speakers, headphones, microwave ovens, laptops, watches, etc) that we use in day to day lives are not made in India. They are mainly imported from China. Had this items been manufactured in India, what would’ve been our employment statistics! There is a tremendous demand for mobile phones and computers in present-day India, as the nation has begun to enter the cyber age. Some of the brands do assemble in India, but that’s not a big step. However, India is not in a position to manufacture the components of these electronic gadgets, the reason being the high cost of implementation of the machines that are used to make those stuff. I believe that in the near future, India will have all the machinery to make the hi-tech electronic components, and will be able to manufacture electronic goods. In the process, the problem unemployment will be resolved to a great extent.
In present times, 70% of Indians are engaged in agronomy. Truly, it’s the most important field of India’s economy. Humans can not survive without food, and the production of the staple food has to be the most important topic in Indian economics. Imagine an Australian Farmer. What picture do you get? A well dressed stalwart man with a hat on his head, puffing cigar, driving a tractor or combined harvester, and earning a lot of money. On the other hand, imagine an Indian farmer. An emaciated man, striving on the land with a spade in the hot sun. His income is subtle. The producer of food is not getting enough to eat! We have to change this scenario, or the country won’t develop. For instance, a farmer is growing onions, and selling it to a broker at 5/- kg, who in turn sells it to a shopkeeper in the town at 20/- kg; the shopkeeper sells the onion to the customer at 40/- kg. The same happens in the case of other vegetables, paddy, wheat, corn etc. The ones who are in between the consumers are earning the most. Clearly, the one who has worked hard to grow that onion isn’t earning a justified sum. This system has to change.
In conclusion, I’ll say that India has come a long way in the run. Yet, a lot of things are happening in today’s India are unconstitutional. It is the responsibility of the upcoming generation to bring about a change. Jai Hind!

Written By:
Saptarshi Ghosh

Department of Mechanical Engineering

1st Year

Intern at KGEC E-Cell
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Trailblazers #1: An interview with Mr. Biplab Poddar

 

Trailblazers is a series of interview sessions that are being done by KGEC E-Cell. We are interviewing college alumni or those still in college, who have found success in establishing their own startup or are intimately involved with one. The first one is with Mr. Biplab Poddar, a 2017 batch pass-out.

Biplab Poddar, an alumnus of KGEC, co-founder, and CEO of Oxedent Technologies, a digital marketing startup shared his views on how to become a successful entrepreneur.

Following are some of the excerpts:

Interviewer: What is the inspiration behind starting a digital marketing?

Biplab Poddar: I always had a dream to start a company of my own. I was looking for an opportunity to start. It is actually quite hard to start a company in Kolkata because the whole startup ecosystem in Kolkata is dead, with very few investors willing to listen to your idea. Three of us got together to start a company called planmetour.com but it failed. And that was the time I tried to figure out what I am good at. I found that most clients abroad were interested in digital marketing. As there was hardly any investment I thought that I could grow with my clients’ money.

I: Is there someone who you look up to?

BP: To be honest, I read a lot of entrepreneurial stories. I watched a lot of inspirational videos on YouTube about how people started from scratch and later went on to have a multibillionaire empire.

I: Is there someone in particular?

BP: In digital marketing segment there is a company called Techshoe, subsidiary of Indus Net, founded by Abhisekh Rungta. In a couple of years, the company grew to a valuation of 100crores. So I tried to study his methods about how he acquired clients and how he hire talent. As digital marketing is a brand new segment, so it is hard to find talent in a city like Kolkata. So now we have a client base comprising of 50 clients which is a new milestone for us.

I: What according to you does it take, to be a successful entrepreneur?

BP: You need to be able to take risks and the willingness to learn new things. Well, I had to learn a lot. I learned how to balance sheets, file returns, maintain accounts,  and appoint CA s. Also retaining and dealing with clients as well as employees. And you need to be able to deal with new problems each and every day.

I: How do you deal with deadlines?

BP: My start-up is a small one which provides digital services to small entrepreneurs and business to grow their businesses online. It is actually quite hard meeting deadlines with only four people. And so we had to sacrifice our sleep.

I: How many sleepless nights did you have?

BP(laughs): Many

I: So, how do you push yourself through these worst times?

BP: I read a lot of books. Currently, I am reading Zero to One. Books help me to escape into a different world. They help me to get through the bad times.

I: As a strategist, how would you guide your company in this fiercely competitive market in the future?

BP: The market will be as competitive as ever. But amidst all this, one still has to stay strong.  You need to find some unique USPs that you can provide to your clients that will maintain the level of work.

I: How do you deal with customers who aren’t satisfied with your work?

BP: I don’t give fake promises to my clients. I offer them free service even if they aren’t satisfied with my work.

I: If you were given a choice to further diversify your company, would you do that? If yes, how would you retain your core customer base?

BP: We are a services based company. So I am looking forward to developing apps for Android because the whole world is nowadays into mobile.

I: Last but not the least, are you hiring?

BP: As we are a services-based company, our main asset is our people. So I am definitely looking forward to hiring new people because they’ll bring in a lot of money.

 

KGEC E-Cell invites all your thoughts, comments and queries at kgececellenquiry@gmail.com

Why we need female entrepreneurs?

Women empowerment is the backbone of a developing country.  Gone are those days when women were considered no match for the all-powerful men in this world.

Educating women means educating a family. There was a blind belief that men are the only winners in the field of science and technology, hard work, intelligence quotient, and leadership.This has been proved wrong because the role of women entrepreneur is identified by Gender and Development (GAD).In today’s era women are in neck to neck competition with men. Women have proved themselves in the field of management, IT, Technologies, Designing, fashion, anything .media service and many more varied fields.Yes, there is a section of women who believe in short-cuts but at the same time there exist some women who are confident, believe in themselves and have enormous fire and burning desire anything.

Educated and deserving women do not get the job of their level or cannot find a suitable job. Women have the instinct to prove their innovation skill related to technology and management skill, just like men. Women desire additional income to support their family. In other words, women in 21st century love to be self-dependent.If they have the required skill set why should they adjust in less? They have become ambitious and have the desire to do something great and are known by their name instead of her husband’s name or family’s name.

Economic compulsions have encouraged for emerging of women entrepreneurs. The burning desire to achieve something in life and contribute in others life have driven many female entrepreneurs.

India has its own pool of some bold and fearless women.They have broken all the myths about their inborn limitations and made their limitations their pillar of success.

I was motivated by the success stories of women entrepreneurs and I submitted an application for being a member of E-Cell, Kalyani Government Engineering College. I knew it would be a great learning experience and definitely, it is. I am very excited for being a part of the magnificent E-summit event 2017. E-Cell is a platform which helped me to bring out the inner entrepreneur in me. The E-Cell team works very hard and undertakes all the efforts to make each and every event successful.

Sessions with the doers: Mr. Ganesh Vancheeswaran, Session 1

Hi guys,

So it’s been a while since we updated the blog and I thought it would be best if we could do it today. We have bought in a new section called “Sessions with the doers”, which will basically be the advices we received from various freelancers, entrepreneurs, authors and experts related to the entrepreneurial ecosystem in the country.

In the first post, we have Mr. Ganesh Vancheeswaran, a freelance writer, author and branding specialist, whose session we had the great fortune of attending. It was hosted by TiE Kolkata on the 26th of November, 2016 and the agenda was “Separating the men from the boys – The hallmarks of true entrepreneurs”.

Mr. Ganesh Vancheeswaran,
                                       Mr. Ganesh Vancheeswaran

 

During the interactive session, Mr. Ganesh and we discussed the meaning of entrepreneurship, the requisites required to become a successful entrepreneur and how this journey gives more than it takes. Here are his thoughts on the traits every new-age entrepreneur should possess:

1. Purpose:

It is necessary for every founder starting out to have a clear idea of what his vision will look like. Being unable to explain it to another person is the clearest indication that you have no clue where you are headed, and in all probability, your plan will sink even if it gets a chance to float. So, be clear on what you are working and make sure you can explain it to a layman in the simplest possible terms as well.

2. Disruption

While not every startup is disruptive, the most successful ones almost always are. In this day and age of tech innovations, if your idea can disrupt i.e. change the way people view things in a manner no one previously thought was possible, there is a great chance of it succeeding.

3. Vision

A vision is something that you harbour deep inside you, and your goal must be to execute that vision, and not give up on it. If you strive towards achieving your dreams despite the distractions, and not pivot towards other business-friendly models, there is a good chance you will not only disrupt but also make it big in a manner you never thought would be possible.

4. Impact

An idea that creates a positive impact on the world is always likely to sustain than the ones which do not. Make sure that whatever it is in your head helps to make the world a better place, even if it is in the smallest manner possible.

5. Satisfying customers over investors

While working on your idea, ensure that is customer-friendly and not investor-friendly. If the model attracts customers, investors will line up automatically. This is something Steve Jobs pursued aggressively, and that is why Apple and Pixar have received such colossal success over the years.

6. Valuing depth over width

If you are offering a service, make sure that you are offering the best service possible to your consumers. Do not keep adding services to pander to a larger audience, but rather deliver the best experience possible to a select few and build on their recommendations.

7. Nurturing yourself

In the end, at the heart of every successful startup is a person or a team who successfully nurtured and adapted to the demands of the market. It is very important to be malleable and shape yourself as per the challenges or requirements.

8. Values in life

No matter how successful one turns out to be, it is important to remains true to oneself and to the basic, humanitarian values of life. In the long run, they are the only things that matter.

9. Pay forward

If you have received good, make sure that you share it with others as well. Invest in people and the returns will be much bigger than your wildest dreams.

 

 

It was wonderful listening to Mr. Ganesh and we hope to see him back in the city soon. You can follow him on his website www.ganeshv.com

 

 

Written by:

Abhranil Roy,

2nd year EE

 

Women Entrepreneurship in India

 

 

In a developing country like India, women are considered as home makers and are thought to have less idea about business and economy. But this scene is changing from the last few years.Women are in a neck to neck competition with  men. Women are competing in each and every field — From science and technology to business , women have proven themselves in every field . Women participation in field of education is growing.The government of India as well as the Planning Commission have realized that a country can only be developed if women are backbone of economy. Women entrepreneurship is seen as an effective strategy to solve the problems of rural and urban poverty. Human development report 2004 ranks India 103 in gender related development index(GDI). As per 2001 census; women constitute nearly half of the population of the of the country. Out of this ,72% were engaged in agriculture , 21.7% in other non agricultural pursuit with only 6.3% in household industry. Women were considered as handicapped because of the lack of skills related to business or technology. But the trend is changing. The Indian women are showing interest to become financially independent .they want to stand on their feet and hone their skills .They are inspired by the role models . The myth that women cannot engage in productive environment needs to be dispelled. Entrepreneurship development for women is an important factor in economic development of India. The fairer sex in cities are modern and they are well educated. The women in rural areas should be aware of the growing opportunities .Rural women can be encouraged to start cottage industries .Rural based micro enterprise have been encouraged by the government by various schemes such as Integrated rural development Program (IRDP), Training of Rural Youth For Self Employment (TRYSEM) and development of women and children in rural areas (DWCRA). The aim of these programs are to remove poverty . The government must evolve appropriate policies to help the women entrepreneurs . Networking facilities as well as proper training must be provided using the help of local NGOs . The government should look into the marketing help required by the women entrepreneurs .These will foster the growth of women entrepreneurship in the country. 

There are many successful women in the field of entrepreneurship. Their success stories are shared below:

Aditi Avasthi

 

After graduating from Thapar University, Aditi got an MBA from the University of Chicago and founded Embibe, in 2012. With a view to disrupt the education space in India, Embibe focuses on technology and data combination to help students prepare better for the competitive examinations.

The inspiration to start Embibe stemmed from Aditi’s own challenges whist she was taking competitive exams way back in 1999 and lack of proper resources to aid exam preparation that time.  Embibe focuses on creating a personalized preparation routine for the user, employing technology as an aid. After raising $4 Mn from  Kalaari Capital and venture fund Lightbox, the Mumbai-based ed-tech startup had acquired 100Marks, a student guidance platform for JEE Main, Advanced and Medical, in an all cash stock deal.

Vani Kola

 

If you are even a wee bit familiar with the venture capital investing space in India, it is hard to miss out on one name in particular, Vani Kola, Managing Director of Kalaari Capital. Born and educated in Hyderabad, Vani  got her bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering at Osmania University and then left to get a masters degree from Arizona State University, spending 22 years in the US. Kola co-founded Kalaari, after successfully building and selling two companies, Certus and Rightworks in Silicon Valley.

In 2006, she returned to Bangalore,  founding Kalaari Advisors in 2006 to create an early-stage venture ecosystem in India. To date, Kalaari Advisors has funded more than 50 companies in India. Vani focuses on technology companies, leveraging India’s domestic growth to create high growth enterprises. No wonder, she has been identified as one of the top 10 entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley, and was  listed as one of the most powerful women in Indian Business by Fortune India last year.

Meena Ganesh

Meena Ganesh, CEO of Portea Medical, a provider of home healthcare services in India, is a woman who has donned many entrepreneurial hats. An undergraduate degree in Physics from Madras University and an MBA from Indian Institute of Management Calcutta, Meena,  started her career at NIIT, and went on to work at PricewaterhouseCoopers and Microsoft. In 2000, she co-founded Customer Asset, a call centre and BPO company, with funding from Softbank Capital and Newscorp. Customer Asset was acquired by ICICI Bank in 2002, and later re-branded as Firstsource. Post that, she worked at Tesco as CEO of its India operations, setting up its IT and back office hub in India.

After five years with Tesco, she joined Tutorvista, an online tutoring company founded by her husband, as a co-promoter. Pearson Education acquired a majority stake (around 76%) in TutorVista in 2009. In July 2013, the husband wife duo Meena and Krishnan Ganesh acquired Portea Medical, a healthcare firm based in New Delhi, after which Meena moved in as the CEO. Portea Medical operates across 24 cities and handles 60,000 visits in a month to patients’ homes. This September, it raised $37.5 Mn in a Series B round of funding led by Accel Partners.

Hats off to all of these women entrepreneurs!

 

Written by:

Komal Singh,

IT 2nd year Year

 

Description and image courtesy: LinkedIn

Are You Employable ?

When the going gets tough, only the tough get going.

Working for a startup is quite motivating and exciting and is quite the fad in present times. As a matter of fact around 70% intern hiring on popular internship sites like-Internshala , Twenty19  etc is done by upcoming startups who want to get most out of you. To play a part in the building of the foundations of a venture, which may later be the next Apple or Google, is satisfying in its own sense.  However it is easy to comment than commit ,given wide range of skill set required to get hired by the startup and excel there. Working in a startup requires  right mix of dedication, diligence and meeting objectives and deadlines . Nevertheless an experience of a startup can prepare you for all kind of jobs and helps in inculcating the quintessential expertise in a variety of fields . Without much further blabbering take a look at list of vital skills required to make yourself employable.

Sales expert:

sales

credits:- www.shutterstock.com

Being  able to handle clients and sell your product and services is one of the most important skill to an entrepreneur. Right from the beginning of the startup till its end ,perhaps whole life an employee had to do this . The job of a sales expert is to break the ice between consumer and the startup and maintain this relationship so that the customer returns back to him after enjoying the service.

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), Search Engine Management (SEM) and Digital Marketing :

digital-jpgcredits:- www.business2community.com

There is popular joke in internet that if you are in second page of google search results than you are not visible on internet.. How many people actually scroll to the bottom of the first  page of their google result and click the ‘next’ link? . Nowadays most of us use internet on daily basis this makes it an important  promoting platform , to make that happen SEO , SEM and Digital marketing comes into picture .These are the techniques which involves promotion of companies via internet marketing, by increasing their visibility in search engine results pages (SERPs) through optimization and advertising. SEM may use search engine optimization (SEO), which adjusts or rewrites website content to achieve a higher ranking in search engine results pages, or use pay per click listings. This can be done analysing search keywords and website popularity and saturation.

Content developers :

content-development

credits:-googleimages

Good content is absolutely crucial for building up credibility for your business and helping draw new customers. Startups are always on the lookout for individuals having  strong writing skills and researchers for developing content, which inherently boosts marketing and allows negotiation with customers and clients.  Likewise designers are also in demand as  humans are attracted to inspiring designs .

Web / App developer ( iOS , windows , android) :

web-app-develop-sit

credits :- www.intelhunt.com

Today everything is ‘smart’, ranging from mobile phones to tablets, hence, having an app is mandatory for a startup especially for marketing, promotion and merchandising, especially in the case of E-Commerce sites. Due to internet  revolution, the presence of a web developer coupled with a graphic designer is a must  in a startup. For creating  such  clear interface  one requires good grasp of  popular web languages like HTML, CSS , Javascript , XML , Java , Python ,Ruby to quote a few . Several open source languages are also available like Django, Drupal, or Ruby on Rails to ease the process.  With a presence on internet even a  noob can target big leagues champions .

Business Development Expert :

financile-planning-en-ontwikkeling-illustratie-36181891

credits:- www.dreamstime.com

Business development is the process of supervising the  marketing, sales, and development strategies for the startup. All businesses need to focus attention on the creation of marketing and business expansion and hence, it is essential to have a business development expert in team . A business development professional’s main focus is to identify opportunities for the business, but also they need to stay up-to-date on current industry trends.

Data Analyst and Big data Analysts :

web-seo-analytics-concept-illustration-website-data-analysis-eps-file-included-high-resolution-jpg-39131350.jpg

credits:-www.dreamstime.com

War is ninety percent information.

-Napoleon Bonaparte,

The famous French general didn’t even live the information age, and yet he attributed most of his military success to having the right information. When everyone  battling for a competitive advantage in business, analytics data can be equally important for a  startup’s success. No business who are eyeing long term stay in the market can survive without analysing their data .

Without big data analytics, companies are blind and deaf, wandering out onto the Web like ship without a compass in ocean .  Raw data becomes information after it has been processed to add context, relevance and purpose. Analysis of sales will reveal trends and patterns, which will in turn help the startup understand the requirements and response of customers towards a product. Data science is a relatively new field and there is a lot of scope for research in topics like cloud computing, databases and security.

Big data analytics refers to the process of collecting, organizing and analyzing large sets of data (“big data”) to discover patterns and other useful information.To analyze such a large volume of data, big data analytics is typically performed using specialized software tools and applications for predictive analytics, data mining, text mining, forecasting and data optimization.

Do You Have The DNA Of a Successful Entrepreneur?

Here are three questions to ask yourself to make sure you have the DNA all entrepreneurs need to succeed:

Credits: http://www.ryylxjw.com
Credits: http://www.ryylxjw.com

 

  1. Are you good with duct tape? Have you ever split a roll of duct tape down the middle to get two rolls out of one? According to a Harvard Business Journal article, resourcefulness is one of the most important aspects of being a successful entrepreneur. The ability to solve big problems with a small team and minimal tools at your disposal will not only position your business for success, but it will train you and your team to always approach problems creatively and make innovative thinking the norm in your workplace. Even when you have more finances and resources to work with, being good with duct tape will have benefits that reach far beyond taking care of the business’ day-to-day challenges; it will cultivate resourcefulness team-wide.

 

Credits: http://www.ryanwestwood.com
Credits: http://www.ryanwestwood.com

 

  1. Do you have insatiable curiosity? According to a 2015 PwC survey, over a thousand CEOs listed curiosity and open-mindedness as two of the most important leadership traits. Do you lie awake at night thinking of how you can improve systems in your company? Does a new skill set that a recent hire brings to the table get your blood pumping? If so, you can be confident that your mind is in the right place. Always looking for better and more effective ways of conducting business is the only way to stay ahead of the game and stay the course when things get tough. When Michael Dell , CEO of Dell , was asked to name the one attribute CEOs need most to succeed in the timesahead, he said , “I would place my bet on curiosity.”
Credits: https://assets.entrepreneur.com
Credits: https://assets.entrepreneur.com

 

  1. Do you like stepping on rakes and getting hit in the face? Because it will happen a lot. The statistics at the beginning of this article are one big group of “stepping on a rake and getting hit in the face” for all entrepreneurs. I am greatly encouraged to see how many people try again and again to do something they love, knowing that things might not work out. That’s the plight of the entrepreneur: try something new, get hit in the face, and repeat. But it’s that willingness to try and fail that ultimately leads to success. You learn something a little different with each rake to the face. Better strategies. Better systems. Who to hire. Who not to hire. Persevering through the failures and being the wiser for each of them is often the only way to make it to your end goal.
Credits: http://www.parth-pandya.com
Credits: http://www.parth-pandya.com

There are no guarantees in the world of start-ups. But if you possess these traits, your chances for success go way up.

 

 

Written by:

Komal Singh,

IT 2nd Year,

KGEC