Lessons I Learned in the First Year of My Entrepreneurial Journey

By Aakash Chaudhry

Many of you believe an entrepreneurial journey begins only when a business is started, a firm is formed, employees are employed, management is established, and revenue is deposited into bank accounts. However, a true entrepreneurial journey begins simply with the idea of starting something on your own and meeting people’s needs on a large scale. When I officially joined my father in 2006, I learned a lot of things that were weird and unique at first but quickly became a part of my checklist and routines. The following are some key takeaways:

    1. Earn and Learn the Establishment: Serving food does not make you a competent chef; nevertheless, getting your hands dirty in the kitchen does. Working under a safe cover will not teach you the intricacies and principles of business, whether it is a family business or any other business. You must create your own rules based on your own experiences. Go out there, get your hands dirty, and experience the highs and lows so you’re ready to take it forth.
    2. Be Clear with Cash Management: Unlike other parents, when I opened my Mumbai branch, my father demanded that I pay him the franchise fee for utilizing his brand. I recall having this strange sense of not being a part of the family company when my father told me this. But, looking back, I realize it was his best decision to teach me the smallest yet most important aspects of business, such as brand value and cash management. Brand value and finances are the roots of a firm that must be robust enough to support it.
    3. Being Independent: There are some rules in business, but we as humans have the capacity and authority to apply those rules and information in a variety of ways. When you build your own shelter to defend yourself from a thunderstorm, you employ all of your knowledge, experience, and learning because you recognize that you are your own rescuer. Being self-sufficient and forging your own path allows you to learn in your own unique way.
    4. Managing Professional and Personal Energies: In the first year of my entrepreneurial
      adventure, I married both my wife and my business. Living away from family and all elder support taught me how to balance my professional and personal lives. It showed me the value of both, as well as the exclusion that both demand in order to maintain one’s mental well-being and success. Never allow your work hinder with your relationships, and vice versa.
    5. Be Close to the Customer: While setting up my first batch in Bombay, I discovered that the best lessons come from your customers. Because your customer is using your product, he is intimately familiar with it and the only person who can assist you in improving it. I started off by visiting parents and learning about their complaints and feedback. In fact, when I joined my father in Delhi in 2009, I began with a PTM to understand the demands of our end customers and satisfy them.
    6. Create an Army: A company employs individuals at various levels. As a result, it is critical to ensure that individuals at all levels and verticals speak with the same objective as the founder. It’s like assembling an army with a same mission and vision for the brand. To ensure this, I began training my education counselors and instructors so that a parent interacting to someone in the Bombay branch feels the same as a parent speaking to someone in Delhi. These are my learning from the initial days of my entrepreneurial journey, I truly believe that yours can differ on the basis of your learnings and experiences. Be observant and always keep your learning hat on.






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