I was recently invited to speak at the Management and Entrepreneurial Skills Summit held in Delhi, India. My video (as I could physically not be there) was streamed live for the session on building up an entrepreneurial ecosystem and the survival of the fastest. Here’s the full transcript of what I shared with the audience, also with the video that was streamed at the event.
Are your Startup experiences similar? Have your brands thought through a cultural shifting in thinking?
Survival of the Fastest: Enabling Entrepreneurial Ecosystem
May 23, 2017
Thank you for inviting me to share my thoughts. My name is Upasna Kakroo, and I founded brandanew.co in 2014, as a content marketing firm. I’ve been lucky to work with clients from around the world, helping them create purposeful brand and content strategies. It’s also been a huge learning phase in determining not just how we could positively impact the growth cycles of our clients, but also how we could shape our own entrepreneurial journey.
Sadly, I may be spoiling this party today. Instead of focusing on “survival of the fastest,” I am inclined to talk about the survival of the most meaningful. It may not necessarily be the fastest, but it often tends to be the most efficient for creating unique and quality customer experiences. We live in a world of busy. Many of us think of quick turnarounds, fast paced living and extreme double digital growths as something to be valued. But most of us do not talk about the actual effects of such models, which may range from a quick monetary burnouts, to poor work-life balance, to products that no one really likes. We’ve recently seen many Startups go through explosive quick growths and then a sudden death and even large scale lay-offs.
Surviving as a new business is not a fluke. It is not a short term tactic to get the highest customer acquisitions or the greatest amount of investor money. Survival is a long-term process of meaningful quality focused growth. As enablers of new digital models, it is our responsibility to create this cycle of quality. Growth goes beyond quickly churned numbers and in a billion+ market, sometimes that may appear tough. But remember that numbers without quality or context lead us to a path of quick spurts that are stop gap arrangements. A focus on long-term sustainable growth instead, requires us to think deeply into our culture, our brand stories and the content we use to create a quality perception in our customer’s mind. As customers, we’re always on the look out of better, so why should we shy away from creating meaning as businesses?
As a first-time entrepreneur, I can tell you that there are three things I’ve been learning along the way that I believe are leading me towards this survival as a meaningful entity. I don’t have much time here, but to sum up some learnings: 1) taking time to define how your brand creates a meaningful experience. Often the most simple, clear ideas are the most efficient, 2) how do you communicate your brand story to your customers and stakeholders and finally, 3) what processes have you worked on to stay authentic as a brand and a culture. This does take time to think through, but so does anything worth doing.
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