Day 2: September 20th 2014
SECOND SESSION – Lean Startup
Co CEO: Rahul and Mohan
Second session of SLP started sharp at 9:45 AM with the projector showing an exciting agenda of the day. The aromatic coffee had become a new friend and the Cube-Labs office seemed soothing, the initial meets and greets had hushed down but had left a trail of smile on everybody’s face. Atmosphere was perfectly set for a wholesome day and everything seemed holistic, intriguing, and all of us were eager to learn.
The first session after the intro was a panel discussion on Ideas and Visions. Vijay Gummadi, Co-Founder of Carz and Kiran Gedela Co-Founder of Oasis center for reproductive medicine made a unsurpassed fit to deliver a high-value session on which we would all marinate on before going through the rest of the sessions. Discussion on business model, customer ownership, creating value, valuing customers, pricing right, building the right product, identifying the problem, deciding what one wants to do etc., were very influential and thought provoking.
Both Vijay and Kiran shared their inspiring stories. Vijay detailed his daring story on how he quit the comfort of a high paying job, returned from the US, and how he started Carz. The part where he narrated how an acquaintance of his at an event-party gathering reacted when he was asked “what are you going to do now that you have returned to India?” question he replied “I am going to start a car garage” was mirthful and funny. Yet he went against all the odds to build what’s today known to all of us; a familiar brand known for its quality that is outdoing some of the big names in the market.
Kiran too had a familiar story. A London graduate, techie, returning to India and wanting to start something in medicine, the whole thing sounded odd. Ingenuity need not spark elsewhere, its inherent in many and the first signs of it is when he or she breaks the rules or goes against the traditional known good path but ventures into the unknown, takes that risk, faces all the finger points and comes out a winner unfathomed. Such was the story, so warmly and passionately told by Kiran. One out of 5 couples suffer from infertility and Kiran was deeply moved by this problem and set out the venturesome journey of starting up. Today he has impacted and successfully resolved numerous such issues and made many couples happy. The gift of life and happiness he provided to those less destined is priceless.
It was a demonstrative and thought provoking session. It seemed as though adrenaline was underpowered by the spirits of entrepreneurship that had sky rocketed our faith beyond space into the galaxy of motivation. Nothing seemed impossible. Our faith in ourselves was restored, doubled and nuclear powered to infinity. The feeling is unexplainable, ecstatic and elated. The time when everyone exchanged their questions with Vijay and Kiran they got subtle yet meaningful answers, there was no remorse, no regrets, but pure belief and passion to what everyone of us were here to do. This feeling was beyond magic, beyond wiz, sorcery or alchemy, it was beyond what words had the capability to explain.
As we returned from the awesome sandwich session, Harsha was all set with the LEAN exercise, how to use it with an example and an activity to startup. The class was divided into teams and a team leader was appointed to fill up BMC chart.
As we winded up the yummy food arranged by Chakri during the Lunch break, Diya took us through the Javelin board theory. Diya had built GHAC to the peaks of success and fame. He had a lesson to teach us all. To everyone’s surprise, the Javelin board theory was also followed by a practical experience. “get out of the building” it was called where the divided groups actually associated themselves with a startup and filled the javelin board by interviewing real customers in malls and strategic outdoor locations, all in few minutes of time allotted before it was presented with the relevance of their idea, assumptions and validations.
In no time, the day had come to an end, none realized how time flew by so swiftly and gracefully. The sessions were like living one of the most loved moments of your life. Consciously we had all reflected upon our own ideas and startups while subconsciously we learnt the most quintessential curricula of starting up and being an entrepreneur. Such high value and moving sessions can only be found at SLP. These are not just days of learning; they are precious days of transformation and realization.
Going to bed that day had a heart that was contempt with everything in the world. Great job done by the CEO and Co CEOs. Power of faith is very important to an entrepreneur. To believe in what he wants versus whats right thing to do. The day taught us how to validate that. Most importantly it instilled the faith in us. When you feel the power of faith in you, peace becomes your slave, people become your penny and problems just remained a particle in space we wished ourselves goodnight on whatsapp and winded up an eventful day to wake up a new and improved person the next day.