Will The Real Engineer Please Startup?
Thanks to some children landing million dollar jobs after passing out of IITs, engineering has become the most popular option (or in some cases the only option) among Indian parents. This popularity soon resulted in a time where every Indian company/startup has some engineers working for them. Just to be clear most of these engineers aren’t working as ‘engineers’ in the company.
After passing out, they take up jobs like customer support, graphic designers, photographers, content writers or decide to start their own companies after watching The Social Network.
Speaking of passing out, an IT engineer from one of the most prestigious colleges in the Alandi area of Pune has just founded his first company – Avocado Labs.
What is an Avocado? Let’s ask him.
“Avocado is the only fruit that provides a substantial amount of healthy monounsaturated fatty acids (MUFA). They are a naturally nutrient-dense food and contain nearly 20 vitamins and minerals. So, it’s a super fruit and nutritious. So are we.” Now you know how dedicated he is to his company’s name and that he’s nutritious.
But what is his venture about? Is he a positive guy? What is he planning to do? Why does he know so much about avocados?
We find answers to all these questions in our 10 Points with the young entrepreneur, leader of tomorrow and fruit-nerd, Sudhanshu Singh.
Some chef probably once said that the overall quality of a guacamole depends on how good the avocados are, and that’s exactly what our lean entrepreneur believes in, “We always wanted to give something that is nutritious and healthy for different businesses and added some unique quality.”
By we, he means his team of youngsters (probably more engineers) who are actually capable of building a completely new product based software from scratch (his words).
“Share your ideas with us and we will make them a reality.” Let’s hope he doesn’t get any perverts as his first clients.
Ideas are good. Most of us are constantly coming up with new ones but executing them can be a pain in the backside.
That’s where Sudhanshu and his avocados come in. And as most new ideas are dependent on the internet, this sober-coder genuinely believes he can make the execution as smooth as possible, “In this day and age, everyone wants to go online, explore the capabilities of the internet. This is a new India, filled with energy, passion and vision. So we are trying to help the vision of this new India become a reality by providing the facilities people need to realise the full potential of the internet.” Don’t know about our readers, but Modi is going to love this dude.
Starting your own venture based on an idea may seem easy. One is filled with excitement, has some strategy in mind and life feels like a train that can’t stop anywhere. But this excitement fades away soon. Monotony sets in, the pace gets slower and the big dream starts reshaping itself.
So how does one deal with this phase after the beginning?
“It’s all about vision and purpose,” He says, “purpose in the sense that we are part of something bigger than ourselves, that we are needed, that we have something better ahead to work for.”
There is a huge difference between understanding the meaning of a word and believing in it. “I believe, that to have an amazing life, you need to break the monotony.”
After struggling with submissions for four years, Sudhanshu truly believes that “purpose is what creates true happiness, and when you have a purpose, whatever your situation is, there is always that fire burning in your you heart.
Despite so many entrepreneurs making it big in the last decade alone, many still fear that leaving their jobs and taking this leap of faith. That fear in our minds ignores these successes and counts the failures. Some startups may have failed to meet their goals and some entrepreneurs may have given up on their dreams in their early stages, but Singh is so not like that.
“I love the word failure, the more you fail the more you evolve. It has a frame of reference attached to it, for others, it’s a failure but for you, it’s a learning experience. In the end, it’s all about the courage to face your failures with a smile, learn from them and start again. Never ever give up”
The next part may seem like something people say after a couple of drinks but he was sober when he said stuff like, “There is always a ray of hope. Remember, hope is a good thing, maybe the best. It’s all about being bold and grabbing the opportunities and giving your best shot. These are some fundamentals every person should have to survive in this fast-paced world.” When a sober person talks like that, you know there is some hardcore positivity going on inside that head.
Even though he completely ignored the previous question and didn’t mention the mistakes these failed startups made, deep down, Sudhanshu is aware of them and his avocados are going to be different from the rest.
“We follow a very basic rule, Code-Craft-Care, which means code crafted with care. We give our best shot with the best technology in the market to make someone’s dream come true. We value people and their dreams and we accept them as invaluable assets.” That’s what he said.
Like every other programmer, he also believes that “software innovation, is like any other innovation. It requires the ability to collaborate and share ideas with other people, to sit down and have a conversation with the customers and get their feedback and understand their needs.”
But one thing is for sure, “This is a revolutionary era for India where we will unfold the hidden capabilities every person has.”
Let’s talk about this broken system in our society. In this point, our entrepreneur is going to open up about how bad our education system is.
“This is the time when we should stop blaming things.It’s very easy to blame something like our education system but it’s difficult to make a difference.” Or maybe he’s not.
We should have mentioned earlier that this story is going to tickle your positive bone. He continues, “I agree that our education system is not up to the mark. We lack the practical skills and end up as bookworms. But we all are human and God has given us the power to think and carry out things. No one will stop you if you want to implement something new, where there is a will there is a way.”
This system of ours is responsible for shaping our minds and it’s because of the design, that this happens, “There are a lot of opportunities these days and I feel most students are reluctant to break the monotony and they do mundane things and at the end, it’s easy to blame the system for that.”
“We live in a digital world and everyone is trying to expand. I think the biggest pain in today’s world is not being able to implement things and see the results. Again here we can blame our education system but that’s not gonna solve the problem.”
One reason behind this sudden growth in the number startups is working professionals realising that there are certain problems in the world. Their solution eventually turns into an idea that ends up ‘disrupting’ some field of technology.
“India is seeing growth under the leadership of able people. However, there still exist many challenges that need to be addressed. To solve these challenges, the country as a whole must be engaged, and talent must be brought from outside the domain of our government, especially where knowledge or entrepreneurial leadership is required. People who are passionate, create great things, and companies that aspire to solve bigger problems do better than those who just look around for funding and money.”
He may not have a product ready to be rolled out on the red carpet, but our engineer does have a vision, “We plan to help people implement things the way they wanted to. We will take their dream as ours and give our day and night to make it work because that’s our purpose.”
In case you think this is just another idea, “Ideas are cheap, they are easy, and they are common. Everyone has ideas, and they are highly overvalued. Execution is all that matters”
There’s this trend in our country. If one particular profession or business makes a lot of money, everyone wants to be in it. This herd mentality has caused saturation in most fields. But Sudhanshu, the positive coder that he is, looks at it from a different perspective:
“I feel it’s not saturation, in fact, it’s a good use of the human brain. Every idea is different somehow and people try to find the pain that is still not cured by the trending technology. The best part about this is they are now secured and they can sustain in the market because they have something valuable to add.”
He also explains that there are a lot of applications that do the same work, but one can find differences in user experiences, architecture, user flow and added capabilities (for non-tech people, that means how an app looks and works when you use it).
Investor or Customer:
Investors, can’t live with them, can’t pay your employees without them. Businesses need both and all startups are businesses, “I personally don’t like some outsiders imposing their ideas on my vision, just because they have a bag full of gold. I feel more freedom you get, more creative you become. The sense of ownership is very important.”
Customers however, “finding the customer is difficult in the beginning but later it’s not about how many you got, it’s about how many of them are satisfied. If they are satisfied, you are growing.” No pun intended.
You can always start a new project, scribble on your calendar or create an excel sheet, none of it will matter if that drive that pushes your car isn’t there. So, how do you get that drive?
“You don’t live like a cog in a wheel that moves as things around you move. If you want to do something, you do it.” Doesn’t get any simpler than that.
He adds, “It’s all about the choices that you make. If we want to change the system, it’s our dream and we have to pursue it. Only you know what you want to do and the most exciting thing is you don’t owe it to anyone but yourself. You don’t owe it to the world, the system, your family, you simply owe it to yourself to get what you want and once you accept that, the fire inside you will keep burning.“
Avocado Labs has the vision to help people grow (again! his words) “I see avocado Labs as one of the most generous service-based software company that is investing all of its time to help someone achieve their goals. We want to be known as the first software company that provides nutrition and health by bringing a smile to our customers’ face. You are healthy when you are happy and satisfied” That’s what he said.
Here comes the best part you’ve all been waiting for (maybe not all of you).
“We want to create startup incubation process where people should come only with their ideas and we will build an in-house team for them. They would own that team and work as our employees to meet their financial needs.”
So to summarise, an entire process where you walk in with your idea, get a team, get paid and just work on achieving your dream. How avocado is that?
This story may not have been as interesting as that of a CEO of a company that made billions in a recent IPO, but it does make you think.
You don’t have to be rich, experienced or have a successful company in your name to make a difference in the world. All you need is an idea and the will to make it work. Because if this simple lean guy, who can’t even drive at night (he doesn’t like driving at night), can dare to run this race then anyone can do run it with him.
If you are interested to know more about his tropical fruit, checkout out their beautiful website here.