What inspired you to write the book?
The challenges I faced when I started the company inspired me. I have documented the same in the book. I feel every starter may face the same problems and for them, this book may help them move ahead in the market.
What does the ‘F’ stand for in your book title ‘Start the F#%$ Up’?
Youngsters are a part of my audience and I want to tell them that you can be successful in any business. The ‘F’ can mean ‘fast,’ I just took it because in conversation we say something like, “Start the f#%$ up.” So I want to tell people to start the fact or to start fast, for the starters.
Tell us about your book cover?
The shoes on my book cover represents youngsters, when they are little older it means they have gone through the journey and they are taking steps forward.
Who is the target reader for the book?
It is meant for all those folks who want to start their entrepreneurial journey but have not tested the waters yet. It’s also for those who have been in the business for a while but time has faded their understanding of certain basics. The theme of the book is motivational while challenging some of the popular beliefs and myths.
You have founded three different ventures. Has this helped you to write a book for startups?
As a founder of different ventures, it helped me a lot. My journey as an entrepreneur has not been all that easy. My first tryst with business was way back in school. The idea of not taking money from home was pretty cool. When I was 22, I joined a company as a copy writer but the company didn’t pay me for three months.
Then I thought that since I am not getting paid, I could start a company so I borrowed some money from my friend. He gave me Rs 40,000 and then another friend gave me a computer. I hired an employee from my old company. All these things were challenging for me and I have penned it all in this book, which will help the starters.
While reading the book I found a quote, “If the leader doesn’t set the right culture, someone else will set the wrong one.” Can you elaborate?
Every company has a different culture. Google and Facebook are known for their unique culture. And setting the right company culture depends a lot on the leader. Our company culture is a combination of being aggressive, innovative and result-oriented. We also have an open-door policy where anybody in the team can connect with me anytime. As a startup, if you don’t set the right culture, someone else will set the wrong one.
In what way is your approach in the book different from other books on the topic?
Well, may be most entrepreneurs write a book towards the end of their career. But I wanted to document a path that was recently treaded. That’s exactly why my book starts with the first question every entrepreneur should ask himself – “What’s my purpose to launch a startup?”
What are you trying to convey through this book?
I want starters to be aware that the super-successful role models they idolise are nothing different from them. They are just a fine blend of hard work, patience, courage and perseverance. And of course, they get lucky sometimes. To be successful, you will need to depend heavily on that one person who will always come to your rescue—you. Nothing helps you like… you.