In case any of you who use this material as a reference and followed my progress from start to finish at ESADE, here’s an update a bit over a year and a half later.
Needless to say 2008 was no picnic but in the end I believe it was beneficial to the world as well as everyone else and at the end of it all things should normalize. At the same time I’m willing to wager that the “forced” innovation that will occur from this recession will bring us benefits for a long time. What is this “forced innovation”? Entrepreneurship out of need due to no jobs / lowered income prospects etc…
Anyways, since graduating, I’ve started my own early stage consulting company, Plain White Paper, Ltd., and while the idea behind it wasn’t first to go into consulting it somewhat just wound up that way, and it’s quite exciting.
We’ve so far launched f3fundit.com (a blog and community on open innovation & entrepreneurship), and the “Next Top Startup” Global Entrepreneurship competiton, which is about all we’ll be able to handle with our current structure. At the same time we’re working on two digital media stealth concepts that – should we get the funding ought to “fingers crossed here” stir a few things up in the digital space. We’ve worked with a few cool companies, and have even had an indirect impact on a private social network.
If you’re looking for Entrepreneurship Advice, head over to f3f, and if you’ve got a good story to tell about your travels, we’d love to read it at PT.
That said, will update you guys with any major future changes to my post MBA life, but that’s it so far.
Cheers, and hope this stuff is helpful.
Do you remember when you were a kid, and you thought you could do everything? That is the spirit of the entrepreneur. Sometimes we get boggled down in life with jobs, bills and other responsibilities, and we think that we have these imaginary chains holding us down and keeping us from our dreams.
They are just those imaginary, and as an Entrepreneur the most important thing you can hold onto are your dreams, they are the driving force, and they are what stems innovation, creates new, and makes the world a better place through enterprise.
That is why in this video series we present you with this short video – and remember, as entrepreneurs, we can change the world.
Without doubt one of the best ways to pick up on best practices and get on the right path is to educate yourself, and learn from others. As such we’ve decided to bring you a once a week video series on entrepreneurship from around the world. These are individuals who have been successful, who speak of their own experiences, and who have agreed to hold interviews – typically with – some of the leading educational institutions globally.
As such, we present you the first entrepreneurship video in the series, an interview with Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman and CEO of the Bharti Group, India’s largest mobile phone operator. The video itself comes from Wharton’s YouTube Channel.
So without further ado:
Sunil Bharti Mittal on Entrepreneurship
We’ve got some start up capital, we’ve got a management team and we’ve got an idea. Great, we’re ready to go.
Wrong. You’re missing what could possibly be one of the most integral parts of your start-up – a mentor, and here’s why.
Mentors are like the wise old man, who can tell you when you’re veering off your path, or if you’re about to make a bad decision, hold a wealth of knowledge and typically know people that can help give you the edge. Mentors are pivotal to you and your business.
As such here’s some best practice advice on how to get yourself a mentor that will help you get your company to the next level.
Networking is key – Networking is by far the best way meet people that may be able to help you in your entrepreneurial venture. Talk to colleagues, friends, anyone and everyone, don’t be shy, ask.
Call up old university professors; they tend to have strong networks, ask your former bosses. Everyone may have a potential contact that can help you, so dig deep and ask.
Meet potential mentors. – Set up talks. Discuss your business, your situation, and what you want to achieve, as well as obstacles your encountering, and how you’re dealing with those obstacles.
A good mentor should tell you what he/she thinks of your business, they should make recommendations, and see where you can be now, in 6 months, in a year, and have experience in the sector that you’re entering. If your entrepreneurial idea is a Plant Nursery, a mentor who’s launched a weblog network is probably not the best one to have.
Stick to similar sectors – For simple synergies, it’s best that your mentor be in the same sector, if you’re in an Internet startup, your mentor should be an experienced online entrepreneur. For telecom, ideally someone who’s had a senior role at a National Carrier, MVNO, or other industry affiliated company.
Now that you’ve managed to get a mentor there are a few things to note.
Most are helping you out for free – and most are very busy individuals, so don’t badger them over every little thing.
If a mentor asks you for compensation from the onset, they’re not a mentor, they’re a consultant, and while on occasion a consultant may be needed a mentor should not outright ask for compensation.
Compensate your mentor, ff they’ve helped you and your success can in part be attributed to their help, give them something for their hard work. If they enjoy wine, a few hundred € bottle is a nice gesture, an even nicer gesture is a 1% stake in your company. 1% may seem like nothing, but when you convert, it’s always nice to get a kickback for your hard work.
With that, good searching.