16 Feb The Importance of Why in the Why of Things
“Change is never easy but always possible” – Barack Obama
As soon as we were done wracking our brains trying to comprehend the world of excel spreadsheets, we, the Enterprise Partners dived into the planning of the Baccha party. After this event, I shifted gears and my journey of exploring different aspects of business started.
On 18th November 2018, at Enterprise, we had a small get-together for kids called the Baccha party. The whole purpose of this event was to get a first hand feel for the potential buyers to see how our product is and for us to do a little more market research but also for us to keep going in the flow of doing something! At the event, we had a few games for the kids which they could play.
The first game was where we had made a wall with paper cups, which the kids had to break with the catapult. Then it was their parents’ responsibility to rebuild the wall. This was aimed at as a family bonding game. The second game was to aim pellets into a bowl. And the third game was tangram making. The children were completely into the games and it was a good de-stressing session for the parents too.
I was a ‘Journey Partner’ at the Baccha party. As a ‘Journey Partner,’ it was my job to take the families through the whole event and keep them busy. This helped me break a lot of barriers as approaching new people and communicating with them is something I would earlier hesitate to do. I was always anxious as to what people would be thinking about me. But it was such a good experience and the vibe of the whole event was extremely happy! At the end of the day everybody was very happy being part of the baccha party.
I have always wanted to explore different aspects of business and see if marketing was something I like. There was an opportunity available at Enterprise for the marketing of the resume workshop and I immediately grabbed it. I worked with Nisha for a month on learning how to sell a product. I learnt that marketing and selling go hand in hand and marketing is nothing but selling.
The 3 main pillars for selling and marketing any product are:
- Market user research
- Product market fit
While I was doing my market user research I met 4 people to ask them questions about themselves and their lives to find out if they were a fit for the workshop. This helped me find my persona. Learning about how to make a persona, changed my whole outlook towards marketing. It made things simpler and faster. It was so interesting to learn so many new concepts; to strategize, analyse my content, work according to plan and then get results. More than getting results just the feeling of working and doing something was incredible. This was the very first time where I was doing marketing on a real-life project and it was a huge deal for me.
The response I received from my friends was very overwhelming. They said the quality of my questions and work was very nice and that made me feel so good about myself.
Working with Shweta Mani
The resume workshop was taken by Shweta Mani. Shweta Mani is a very experienced woman and i was really lucky to have interacted and worked with her. She is a graduate from IIM-A. A serial entrepreneur, she has worked and helped CEOs in the corporate world over 7 countries till now. That’s some crazy experience, isn’t it?
I had to interview her and talk to her about what type of people does she want for her workshop. We had a few meetings, and was a very good learning experience .
Taking the lead
While I was still working for the resume workshop, during one of the regular Enterprise meetings, the Enterprise partners took the session on their own. On that day, Tanish, Dhruv, Purusoth, Hussain took the lead as the scrum masters.
The agenda for the day was to talk about the #करो event. We discussed how to sell the event to people. During the meeting Tanish said, “if you tell them your story they will buy the product without asking”. I realised how this was so true. When you think about it, all the great people that are known and who inspire us have a killer story. I feel really grateful that I have Enterprise helping me build my story.
One person whose story inspires me is J.K. Rowling. She had just gotten a divorce, and was on government aid, and could barely afford to feed her baby in 1994. This was just three years before the first Harry Potter book. It was rejected dozens of times until finally Bloomsbury, then a small London publisher, gave it a second chance after the CEO’s eight-year-old daughter fell in love with it. This is what the world’s most successful woman author went through to be where she is today. She probably thought of stopping at one point, but the fact that she didn’t, defines where #करो can get you.
Coming back to the event, the only thing we decided was to have an event but there was so much more to it! There were so many questions in my head about the event like what is the event going to be about? The scale of the event? How are we going to do this? The questions were endless.
Every team needs a leader and the 18 of us needed to work as a team but also to be lead by someone. We had a round of voting for the team leaders. Through the voting, Tanish, Dhruv Chaudhri, Dhruv Gupta and Kajal were elected to be the core team members. Then the work was divided into 4 categories: Activities, On Ground, December pitch and sponsorships. We all had to make our powerpoint presentations and present them for the next session. I was part of the December pitch team.
The next week we presented our pitches and discussed how we wanted the event to be. Various activities were discussed, a rough on-ground plan was made, a list of sponsorers was made. This is how we initially started but if you see where we are at right now is a whole different dimension.
Parents Open House
The following week we had an open house at the Enterprise space where all our parents had come to see what we have done till now. It was very overwhelming for them as they saw what we’ve done and they felt really proud of us. For me it was very satisfying that my parents were happy with what I was doing, I could see the smile on their faces. And I could feel the positivity in all ways. I didn’t want anything more.
The Space was decorated so well with all our pictures which conveyed our journey. Nisha and Yusuf also explained to our parents about what we’ve done because after college hours we are here at the enterprise space all day. Our parents were asked to find out our ‘ME BOARD’ from a mix of boards and my mom picked it out in on go. I think it was super important to communicate with our parents and let them know and give them an insight about what happens at Enterprise.
We sat in our teams and again made our ACTION PLAN. I learnt that without making an action plan you can’t take a step further to achieve your goal. Things were going a little slow that week but that session was an eye opener about how much we need to work now and make short term goals every week to achieve our vision.
I also learnt that day that working alone is very crucialand you don’t always need a team to work, as long as you’re alone and you put in all your time and efforts with a clear goal, you can achieve it easily.
Later that session, Adi made us realise the importance of research work. He took the example of Enterprise itself, and showed us the research work gone into Enterprise before he could even start thinking of implementing it. He showed us research from 3 years back, where he was just toying with the idea of starting a college of doing. What I heard that day was shocking because the amount of research he did and the efforts he had put in, was incredible. What I learnt that day was to write everything down, to research till the 10th page of Google, and to always take help and talk to the right people.
Lighthouse by CEO of 1factory
Nipun Girotra was the lighthouse for the session in the first week of December. He is the CEO of 1factory. Nipun’s career experiences include multiple roles in manufacturing and operations management. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree In Mechanical Engineering, a Master’s Degree in Industrial Engineering and an MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania.
His company 1factory has developed a software after years of experience in Manufacturing, Quality control, Supply Chain and software to save manufacturers down time.
From Nipun’s story, I learnt that it’s very important to have a good customer relationship. He would travel across the world to just meet the customer and that would build a good relationship, he replies to all the update requests he gets from his customers and he makes sure that he fixes them too. He showed us his product backlog sheet and how he has organised each and every request that he’s got.
Also, he made me realise how important it is to do what you love, Nipun left his job to start his own organisation. It took him some time to be where he is today but business is all about risk and he’s happy doing what he does.
The ‘Why’ session
This session was one of the most interesting sessions where I saw my fellow partners emphasize on the word WHY for the event. We do everything for a reason right? Like every time I go out to spend some time with my friends, my parents always ask me why am I going. As stupid as that question sounds it’s equally important to know why are you doing it? For me, I spend time with my friends because I feel happy and when I’m having a good time and I feel very lively.
That day we discussed why we’re doing the event and Dhruv Chaudhri and the others put in a lot of time to just figure the answer out and came to a conclusion that they want people to feel good about themselves.
The examples they used to make us understand this concept were really good and made me realise the importance of why. Like Steve jobs when invented his first Macintosh his why was to challenge the norms which were available outside and to make things simpler, he never thought of how he would make good money or compete with the competition.
Another example which was quite impactful was the Starbucks example. Have you ever thought of what is Starbucks’s? Is Starbucks in the coffee business or the people’s business? Starbucks is in the people’s business but they sell coffee by the way! Their service gives you a place which is always welcoming in different ways. Like when you enter they scream out “Heyy welcome to Starbucks”, they will write your name on your cup, shout your name out once the drink is ready, you get free wifi and so much more. Did you ever think about any organisation from this aspect? This hit me hard!
We were also introduced to the self-assessment board where there were columns made according to our names, the number of weeks, our learning, our #करो (the things we had done and our weekly goals. We rate ourselves my colouring the stars on the basis of how good we think we did.
It was a really good idea as we need to analyse ourselves and we should know what we have done by the end of each week in order to see our growth.