Sunday, July 7, 2013

Evolving Early Entrepreneurs...

In the 80's, India's population explosion was treated as a curse and programs to curb were unleashed.  From this crush to curb philosophy, we are now facing a unique situation of having a lesser median working age, than countries like china and Japan.

To quote an article from CNBC ' "India has close to ideal demographics. It's in a sweet spot," said Robert Prior-Wandesforde, director, Asian economics research at Credit Suisse. "As the population's working age expands, savings increase — and that turns into a source of funding for investment. This will be beneficial for the country's competitiveness as other countries age,"

India's "demographic dividend" — the window of opportunity that a large workforce creates to strengthen an economy — could add 2 percentage points to the country's annual growth rate over the next two decades, the International Monetary Fund said in 2011.

While growth in India has been slowing this year, the economy has on average grown close to 8 percent annually over the last five years, helped in large part by this demographic dividend.

"A growing workforce is an advantage for both the manufacturing and services sectors in India. Not only do businesses have access to people that are young and physically fit, it means less cost pressures, particularly on the wage front, because of the availability of labor," said Arvind Singhal, chairman of consultancy firm Technopak Advisors.

However this also presents a challenge.  While as above, availability not being the problem, the quality of this human capital is a concern.  Another big problem is creation of jobs. These job opportunities can come only when people with ideas and capital start creating them.

Most educational institutions have tried to get industry connected through their placement cells.  Here an young graduate gets a jumpstart into a job, which the industry offers.  That is one job per graduate.
Evolve ideas to build enterprises

Now consider this- what if this young graduate has a great idea, or ideas which can scale onto an enterprise, creating 100's of jobs.  Admittedly, not all of them can do or stomach the idea, but there will be those few who can, right?

Many leading institutions like IIT's have started incubation cells, connecting infrastructure, funding and other support to such grads.  Now it is the time to take it to other colleges and institutions.

Tell them -
“Start today, not tomorrow. If anything, you should have started yesterday. The earlier you start, the more time you have to mess up.” — Emil Motycka

And such was the coincidence, that two days back this article appeared in the business columns of Times of India. 

MBA students get their risk appetite back

It is time to evolve early entrepreneurs
MUMBAI: As many as 20% of Indian MBA students want to start their own ventures or work with a startup, signalling the growing risk-taking appetite among Indian youngsters and a maturing entrepreneurial ecosystem in the country. What is even more interesting is that more female students said they wanted to join a startup compared to their male counterparts in a survey conducted by a global employer branding firm among 10,000 Indian undergraduate business students, MBAs and engineering graduates.

The trend is as widespread among undergraduate business students and IT and engineering students, with 26% and 16% respectively wanting to opt for a startup or start their own ventures, said the Universum study, titled 'India's most attractive employer', which was shared with TOI exclusively.

Around 13% of female undergraduate business students said they were willing to join a startup compared to 11% male students. Similarly, 11% of female MBA graduates wanted to join startups against 9% of their male counterparts.

This entrepreneurial spirit among Indian students contrasts the choices being made by their peers in most developed markets who opt for job security and an assured paycheck. In the US, for instance, only 10% business students and 12% IT students chose the entrepreneurial route while among German students 12% in both the categories said they would opt to join a startup or kick-start their own venture.

There is more than one reason that is pulling India's youth to startups. Graduating batches, whether engineers or business students, have working parents who continue to support their children, thus allowing them to take risks, said IIM-Trichy's director Prafulla Agnihotri. "Traditionally, Indian communities like Maharashtrians and Tamilians were categorized as the working classes. Today, even they want to start something of their own. Along with the entrepreneurial spirit - which is on the rise - is the bleak reality that the job market is not as promising as it was a few years ago," Agnihotri said.

Propelling the entrepreneurship bug among Indian students is a vibrant angel funding environment, business plan competition on campuses and interactions with mentors. However, there are a few cautions that we must exercise, said Krishna Tanuku, executive director of the entrepreneurship centre at Indian School of Business. "Young people may have the aspiration, but to make things work one requires a lot of tending to and institutions like colleges and the government must play their part," Tanuku said.

So, dear reader, our opportunity here lies in taking the idea of 'evolving early entrepreneurs' from the average grad school, addresses the nation's clear and present opportunity to generate more jobs, generate more GDP, and therefore a better nation.

To crystallize, we can say our vision is to 'evolve early entrepreneurs' from graduate schools- especially management, technology and engineering institutions.   We are proposing to set up an organization that will foster these ideas, from pre-natal stage, to formation of the company itself, and then offer ongoing post-natal consulting. 

If you are interested and wish to participate in this idea, please write back to 
The business model, and the service details are available to share.

- Ashok Speaks


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