Who should startup? An experienced professional [been there, done that, now wanna do it my way!], or a rookie [fresh perspective, lotsa energy but no experience!]?
Well, I am not getting into this debate. One can always quote success/failure stories either ways, but the focus of this post is on the new new startup mantra that is happening in India..
The new age good fellas are neither the experienced folks nor the newbies – the new generation is starting up while having their day job.
And surprisingly, these guys are doing their homework in a very focused manner – they launch the alpha version, do quite a bit of WoM [Word of Mouth] marketing for their product / gather user feedback[using their peer channel], and then they approach the VCs.
The best part about these ‘day-job, night-startups’ guys is that they are technically savvy and business smart; and that translates to quick development and feature testing.
Most importantly, they appeal to the Indian tech community – I realized this when I attended ActiveMobs‘ presentation in the Barcamp. Everybody wanted to help these guys in their initiative, there was an emotional connect with these guys who were trying to achieve something great..everybody wants to play a part in the making of next ‘rock stars’!
Taking a step back, one of the reasons why Indian IT economy is still a services economy and not products, is because of the attitude of developer community towards technology.
Indians are technologist by chance [or lure of $$s], not by choice [unlike their counterparts in sillicon valley], and given our 100+ years of slavery, service comes as a default behavior.
I have seen many brilliant guys starting a service company claiming that they will ultimately build products, but need to start with services to keep the company running. Call it ‘risk averse’ attitude, the ‘product’ ultimately is thrown out of the window.
Thankfully the times, they are a changing and it’s changing for good. So, what’s fueling the change?
IMHO, to a large extent – the B-phenomena, i.e. Blogging, combined with the openness of web2.0 culture.
In general, blogging leads to networking with the similar mindset across www, and the end result is that people get to rub shoulders with other techies of the world, get to know about new ideas floating in the silicon valley… And events like Barcamp provide the creative spark to the nerd community..
And what does that leads to?
- Hacks [search for Blogger hacks and you will see many Indian kids hacking pretty well!],
- PoCs [proof of concepts, i.e. many guys are launching products right when they are in their college, and they are doing it for fun, though it’s just that we don’t have Paul Graham’s YCombinator to look after these kids]
And a startup is born.
Look at products like CommuteEasy/ActiveMobs and several others – the common theme across all these products is that these guys are doing it for fun..business plan comes a little later.
Even Google did it for fun.
So, if you are one of these ‘good fellas‘, do let us know [ashishk.sinha@gMail] – we would love to partner with you in any ways we can!.