Tech Talk with Mr. Ravi Krishnaswamy

From Microsoft to Flipkart and now InMobi, its current CTO, Mr. Ravi Krishnaswamy has had quite a journey. In a candid tête-à-tête with the man himself, we got the technocrat to throw light upon the breadth of experiences he gained working across two continents, different companies, and diverse business verticals. In our candid Tech Talk series, we also got the Tech maverick to talk about the transformations taking place at InMobi and share helpful insights for aspiring CTOs.

Ravi had spent close to two decades at Microsoft, which as we are well aware of is a global technology conglomerate. Working there was all about building a large-scale system in the B2B sector. It called for intensive and extensive leadership and management capabilities. Juggling multiple verticals, private-public platforms, as a well as, a host of different operations in a partner-led model. A mean feat if you ask us. And it was made possible solely by the best of the best, which is what probably persuaded the e-commerce giant in India to bring him home to manage their enterprise. Yes, you guessed right! We’re talking about Flipkart.

In our interview, Ravi referred to Flipkart, as the “internet darling in India.” An apt title judging by the way it took the e-commerce business by storm. From a B2B industry, Ravi’s Flipkart journey commenced by handling its B2C tech domain. From cracking ideas to beat the competitors in the market, coming up with innovative approaches to rake in revenues and drive sales like Flipkart’s ultra-successful Big Billion Sale. It was a whole new world for Mr. Krishnaswamy, but one that he dominated all too well. Now bought over by Walmart, the Flipkart story took a different turn, but Ravi’s desire to explore more avenues of opportunities remained the same.

Once again, Mr. Ravi Krishnaswamy was back again in a B2B setup which brought him full circle from his days spent at Microsoft. InMobi is a global technology player in the tech market. In the span of 1 year that Ravi has been at the company, he oversaw a huge transformational shift in the very DNA of the company. He likened it to “changing the tires of the Boeing after it has taken off.” But the change was a result of intensive research, best practices, and kickass strategy. One such strategy was the partnership with Microsoft, which resulted in a big boost for InMobi, and which led to co-innovation, co-productions, co-marketing, and co-selling. A major feat for the enterprise, and a big win for Mr. Ravi Krishnaswamy. But that wasn’t all that happened. There were also strategic acquisitions like the merge with Sprint.

“A CEO cannot be successful without leveraging a CTO” these were the words that Mr. Ravi Krishnaswamy uttered with complete conviction. And judging by his accomplishments which covers a 360 perspective, we know why. A partnership between the CEO and CTO is vital for the growth and success of a firm. It’s also crucial that they are the right fit for each other and exist on the same plane when it comes to the future vision for the company. More and more CEOs these days are recruiting CTOs who can help take their company to the next level. But what’s crucial is that CTOs too should be able to scale-up to match the CEOs vision. A piece of key advice that Mr. Krishnaswamy has for aspiring CTOs is to have a “full stack perspective”. Which means not limited yourself to the tech space, but garnering insights and experience across a wide spectrum of disciplines like management, innovations, and executions.

Mr. Ravi Krishnaswamy is just one example of visionaries that we have helped place. For us, at Purple Quarter, being a value fit for the firm is extremely important. Extensive research, detailed investigations, and case studies are just some of the steps we follow to bring you the right candidate. When it comes to sourcing in today’s job market, you can always rely on Purple Quarter to find you a Purple Squirrel who can take your firm to the next level.

Ten Books a CTO shouldn’t miss out on

Knowledge is power, and this is especially true for CTOs in the present industrial economy which is constantly evolving. To keep abreast with the latest news and developments, it’s vital for CTOs to constantly update their knowledge bank. But when you’re constantly scrunched for a time between deadlines, leading your team, and heading the tech division of a company, it may be a tad difficult to always be in trend with the latest developments.

Tech blogs and newsletters don’t do justice to those who have an appetite for a lot of information. Events, symposiums, and conferences are a great way to connect to the tech space and read and learn about new innovations to hit the market, but it’s not always possible to be at all of them. One thing that will never let you down though, is a book that you can carry around with you. During those few minutes of breaks between meetings, you can always read a page or two and complete the rest when you get back home. We’ve picked out ten books that we think is a good read for every CTO.

  1. Hooked

Getting your consumers hooked onto your brand. That’s how the game is played and that’s what Hooked is all about. It’s about getting noticed amongst all the noise in the digital space. It delves into psychology, how brands play on it, what stays, what fades, and what you can do to create products that are remembered for long.

  1. Start With Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone To Take Action

The book decodes the way great leaders think and communicate. Author Sinek terms this as “The Golden Circle”. It’s the perfect framework within which companies can be built and that can inspire change. It all starts with the question, “why?”.

  1. The Innovator’s Dilemma: The Revolutionary Book That Will Change The Way You Do Business

Author Clayton M. Christensen talks about the reasons why firms lose their market leadership. They may be doing all the right things and checking all the boxes, but sometimes it’s best to “not” listen to consumers. The right time to develop lower end products and high-performance products, targeting small markets and big markets. It’s a book that throws light on all these facets and makes for the great guide.

  1. Rework

Authored by the duo Jason Fried and David Hansson of the development company, 37 Signals. The book offers effective strategies for running a digital business. It busts myths that hamper your progress and offers solutions. Rework includes practical and innovative ideas that can be implemented for your firm’s growth.

  1. The Phoenix Project

The book focuses on DevOps and despite being a technical book, is very much an engaging read. It throws light upon a systems-thinking approach to help your team be more productive. It also highlights commonalities between manufacturing and IT.

  1. The Mythical Man-Month

It was published 30 years back, but till today it remains a book that has made an impact in the software development space. It decodes the human factor in the realm of software engineering. If you want to ace as a CTO and a team leader, then this book is a must-read.

  1. Continuous Delivery

It’s a book that helps breakdown software delivery processes and lays down guidelines for new and improved strategies and methodologies. Automation, testing, deployment, it has it all.

  1. Peopleware: Productive Projects And Teams

This book bridges the gap between humans and technology. Tech issues are human issues; the best way to solve them is by first going to the crux of the problem. This means focusing on your team and building better leadership skills. Better workforce generates better software enhancement. For CTOs this is probably your Bible.

  1. The Hard Thing About Hard Things

In this book, author Ben Horowitz gives an insight into what drives Silicon Valley. It’s great entrepreneurship advice for CTOs. Right from challenges, negotiations, firing or hiring employees, to managing your own psyche, it spills the beans on it all.

  1. Don’t Make Me Think! A Common Sense Approach To Web Usability

Decode the minds of consumers to get an idea of how web designs can be simplified, beautifies, and made easier to access. If you’re a programmer, writer, editor, or designer, then this book has to be on your reading list.

So, now that we’ve listed out a bunch of books that you can stack up and get reading on, the challenge lies in you finding the time to read them all. Start with one, read a few pages at your workplace, and make it a ritual before bedtime to at least complete one chapter. Believe us, the wealth of knowledge that you’ll gain will transform the way you think and operate.

 

How to Hire an Internet-Era CTO?

What do you mean by an internet-era CTO? When you hear the term, do you picture a well suited millennial technocrat or a seasoned professional heading the tech division of a company? Simply put, an internet-era CTO creates an ideal work strategy and process, to usher in and run the digital side of a business. They run existing IT systems and processes, and are constantly on the hunt for new innovations in the market; that can help boost the growth of their company. When it comes to their game plan, they have three big goals in mind:

  1. To take charge and ensure smooth processing.
  2. Create a digitally sound environment that thrives on embracing new changes.
  3. Crack the next big idea and growth strategy.

Technology skills are in high demand over the world, and what’s even better than identifying and hiring a tech genius, is recruiting one that’s a package deal. By this we mean, someone who’s a techie, leader, and great manager. So how do you find a candidate that matches this?

Know what youre looking for

You need to find a candidate who fits your requirements like a glove. They need to have an attitude and aptitude. Here are some of the qualifications that you should look out for when you start the hunt. They should have a sufficient amount of experience in scaling and creating digital services. A knowledge bank when it comes to different digital technologies and experience working with them. Words like “continuous delivery” and “DevOps” are their favorite scrabble words, which means that they are well-versed in what these terms denote and their functioning. They have worked with open source tools and communities. They even know how to market these tools. They have strong leadership skills and have even lead teams of engineers and agile, architects, and developers. Strong communicators, they probably even delivered a Ted Talk. They are regulars at tech symposiums and have connections in the tech space. They are clued in on data migration and applications from proprietary technology environments and legacy. They’ve had large scale negotiation with tech vendors and know how to build partnerships and identify profitable acquisitions. They also need to be mentors who can pass down knowledge and develop the skills of other promising minds.

Know how to tell

You may have a list of requirements, but are you equipped enough to analyze and judge them? Against which parameters will you asses the relevancy of the potential candidates’ skill sets? In order to crack this conundrum, you’ll have to have a trusted advisor by your side. They’ll help sieve through your requirements, and have a more detailed understanding of the candidates. Your advisor can also help fill in the cracks if your recruitment process is not going as well as you would have wanted. They’ll help spot out the missing pieces of the puzzle and help complete the picture.

Go where they are

The world’s a small place and you never know, you might just meet your future CTO at the same annual tech gathering that you’re at. Brilliant minds think alike and are always on the quest to learn more. So, the best way to find a gem is to go to the place where you can mine one. Symposiums, lectures, and Ted Talks for starters are great places for building connections and finding the right candidate who fits your requirements.

Dont forget to look inside

Before you look outside, maybe you should look inside, and by that, we mean your very own firm. Your CTO may very well be working for you already. In-house candidates should be the first ones that you screen when you start the search for a CTO. Seek out this talent first. Identify those employees who are steady at their job and are doing great. They are making a difference in your company in a good way. They are your in-house problem solvers and have a questioning mind. Ask managers to identify such talent. Start a mentor program and opportunities for employees to challenge themselves and grow. Ensure that employees get due credit and reward for their efforts and collaborations.

Steps to start the process

Choose the unconventional route for your company. It could be an “incremental delivery change or a radical organizational change”. Create visibility for your firm at the right places. Talk about its growth story, where it’s currently at, and your vision for its future. This is what will eventually persuade the right talent to join your firm. Get the right advisors on board. Ensure a smooth recruitment process and do-away with glitches. Let this be your bible when it comes to recruiting an internet-era CTO who can take your company to the next level.

Will you be the NEXT CTO for the Largest Unicorn?

In this emerging technology ‘enabled’ world, innovation is a crown!

“Innovation distinguishes a leader and a follower” – Steve Jobs

20 years ago before technology cracked down as the most important domain and though the internet was connected to few old & heavy box look alike computers there were about just 10k websites as compared to today’s 45 billion+ web pages. It was the time when Amazon, Yahoo! and few were still in the beginning stages. We all probably would have laughed if someone said our life would one day be irrevocably changed and depend on companies like Google, Amazon and comfortably be at home and wait for your food to get delivered at your doorstep from companies like Swiggy, Zomato, etc.

Innovation and Technology today has made our life easier, convenient and enjoyable and one should always be thankful to those great technology leaders who brought their ideas into reality. When we say great technology leaders, immediately the names that strike to our minds include Steve Jobs, Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, etc. These individuals would have never achieved or become great leaders just by their technical skills but also by their leadership skills and visionary approach towards solving business problems and setting themselves apart from the highly competitive industry.

Whether you are in the management position or looking to make future step into this dynamic, rapidly growing field, it is really important to know what skills an individual or leader should inculcate to develop and transform from a good leader to the greatest leader within their respective realm.

With a huge advancement in the present technology sphere and modernized business process, a talent with the remarkable mix of business acumen and meticulous technology understanding is in high demand. With the encouragement of Behavioral Metrics for evidencing the IQ, EQ & BQ, ‘Purple Quarter’ has met more than 300 Tech heads to thoroughly perceive and arrive at competent and extensive leadership talent. Here are few key points that you can consider to grow into that role:

 Flourish Employees Competence

As Deepak Singh Ahlawat, Chief Executive Officer of Purple Quarter, affirms, “In the Technology space, IT Professionals always look forward to work with the best technology leaders before they prefer to join any organization because effective leaders always support their peers to learn and grow as team member and empower them to work towards solving business problems.”

Great Leaders always prefer to focus on business issues. They are possessed with keyboard buttons and running codes on the display. Today’s fast pace of innovation entails a leader who can wade through the technology with a focus on how it can be helpful for solving business issues? To achieve such objectives leaders always make an effort to empower valued employees by giving them opportunities to contribute their ideas and solutions, put them into practice and make them feel happy and confident.

Not just coding or doing all tech stuff but self-educating and upskilling the tech team impacts the company’s operations as well. This will always help the leaders to climb up the ladder navigating the whole team to originate into the bigger picture by showing how the hard work will leverage every single person to grow personally and ultimately achieve organizations overall success.

Influencing your actions (Walk the Talk)

Words are the powerful force of creation. They take the organization goals and put them out in front of whole world to witness. The best technology leaders always need to make their peers feel that they are very less concerned about being right rather than about doing the right thing.

Leaders always create a roadmap by manifesting the desire for accomplishing the objective, creating trust or faith within peers. The spoken word should always have certainty and quality which will be directly related to the integrity of the word.

Focus plus Productivity Leads to Result Oriented Vision

In the field of Technology, Innovation never stops! Which leads to new developments. Many companies easily get lost in the details of their daily operations. But, great leaders always envision beyond the day to day demands and set their sights on improving processes, workflows and retuning their algorithms or codes so that they can optimize the business in emergency situations.

In one word, they have a vision and no employee would like to work for a lazy boss. Most of the IT professionals would like to work within a successful team and it can only be transpired by a leader setting the right tune.

Innovate, Influence and Inspire

Vision, Communication, Innovation and Empathy are some of the principal qualities a leader needs, to successfully direct a tech organization these days. Effective technology leaders always bring innovation in, through the ground up. They always define the right technical road map as suitable for their business and set constructive internal work culture for employees so that they can grow their ideas, innovate and contribute towards the growth of the organization.

In the present corporate culture, employees are often referred to as ‘resources’, which is often dehumanized. Great leaders always get into other person shoes – think about what they feel, want and are dealing with. Only then it is possible to achieve the less or zero attrition rate by possibly making fair decisions for everyone and not resulting into mistrust or dissatisfaction.

“I think that’s the single best piece of advice: constantly think about how you could be doing things better and questioning yourself” – Elon Musk

Just like the way every leader worked hard to expertise in technical skills, since it’s an ongoing process, over a time every leader will learn and tweak the effective leadership skills. One should always believe that it’s not just a ‘one man show’, Instead it’s the people surrounding you, who will help to create the culture with desire, contribute and bring value for the skill sets that you portray towards the team and leads you to transform from a good leader to a great leader.

Hottest Technical Talent Moves from a Trillion to a Lowly Billion: What’s the Deal?

Bengaluru-based Technology Head Search Firm, Purple Quarter, recently facilitated a move for Dale Vaz, former Head of Technology for Amazon.in to join Swiggy as Head of Engineering and Data Sciences. He left Amazon after 11 years of outstanding and acknowledged work to join one of the fastest growing food delivery companies in India.

Proven and dependable talent is a scarce commodity. So, when a hot commodity moves from a big company to a smaller one, the industry is bound to look up and take notice. According to Purple Quarter, who facilitated five CTO placements including this one in the past 6 months, it is not about money. Though important, that’s not what wins the war for Talent. Purple Quarter believes, “Finding a CTO is like finding a Life Partner, the reasons are, and have to be profound and more meaningful.”

So, what makes guys like Dale Vaz move from a larger organization to a Startup?

  1. Linear Isn’t Exciting Enough. I Have So Many Dimensions to Explore!

Several top-level employees are polymaths like Steve Jobs and Richard Feynman with multifaceted personalities. They often exhibit a well-developed sense of curiosity, learning, and problem solving. They’re always looking for exceptionally challenging and potentially rewarding opportunities to stretch their creative boundaries and develop new skills.

Their desire to learn across fields may not always get fulfilled in an established organization. But, a smaller fast growing organization may offer greater involvement in organizational decision making along with the opportunity to take on more than one role. They can find many roles that fully leverage their atypical talents.

  1. Not the Money. I Am Looking to Make an Impact!

They may be looking to make an impact, but their intention is far-reaching. They want to make decisions that will shape lives and set new industry trends. They want to create a legacy of their own. Small organizations, with ambitious visions, provide leaders with creative autonomy and enriching work environment to push their boundaries.

Just like Fuze CEO, Colin Doherty says, “We can actually make decisions here that affect everybody’s future in a positive way and we can get things done. That was the huge ‘aha’ change moment where we thought we can actually affect our destiny here by doing things slightly differently. That was the energizing moment for me. I realized I could never work for a big company again at that point.”  We agree with Colin completely.

  1. I Can Define the Culture That I Aspire For

Today’s top-level talent wants to partner with an organization, rather than work for it. They want their own personal brand to grow as the organization they work for also expands.

Small organizations tend to offer top-level employees more control over their skill sets, often in the form of flexible work hours, the ability to choose their team members, set up priorities, and work from home. Thus, top-level talent can define the kind of work culture they like.

  1. Not Engaged Enough

Most large corporations have a fixed organizational structure and culture, which can limit entrepreneurship and engagement. Not all top-level employees can thrive in such a culture. According to Gallup, highly talented employees that are not engaged are more likely to have the highest turnover rate. In the financial sector, it was around 10%, while regional healthcare had14% turnover rate.

Source – https://news.gallup.com/opinion/gallup/226025/talent-walks-why-best-employees-leaving.aspx

A smaller organization, owing to its flexible organizational culture and entrepreneurial spirit, often boasts better engagement for everyone. You make a lot more friends when you are fighting an entrenched battle at the fronts than when you do in the cubicles. People are more forthcoming about their own doubts, fears, and strengths and bond easily.

  1. Unbridle My Creativity

Most corporate organizations have a rigid work structure. They have specific code styles and legacy systems that everyone, from the top to the bottom, needs to follow. However, top-level talent, especially technical experts such as Chief Technology Officers (CTOs) sometimes need to think outside the box. They can’t always stick to the rules or work in silos or rely on third-party resources.

In our experience, most startups and small organizations focus more on doing something than being someone. They allow you to take ownership of your work, methodology, the team and the workflow. Usually, top-level employees crave this type of creative autonomy.

  1. I Want to Take the Road Less Traveled!

Usually, top-level tech executives have treaded a predetermined career path. In the beginning, money is the primary motivation. But, after reaching a certain level, the journey becomes boring and the desire to take the road less traveled starts to kick in.

In bigger companies, scaling up often beckons the law of average. Thus, the top-level talent doesn’t do humongously better than the not-so-talented. Everybody goes averagely happy. Smaller companies, on the other hand, run at a much faster pace and provide a career path with unexpected twists and turns.

From an emotional standpoint, they want to follow their passion. Top-tiered tech execs have immense faith in their abilities to create value. They have a little alpha trait too! It often encourages them to take risks. If making a move from a large organization to a smaller one fulfills their heart, they are willing to take the risk.

  1. Is Uprooting and Replanting Yourself Professionally Tough?

Working in a smaller company is different from working at a large organization. The hierarchy and structure may make large companies more bureaucratic with lots of rules, procedures, and codes. But, they also define your course of action if things go sideways. In a smaller company, however, you will face uncertain situations every day with no established guidelines.

Unlike large corporations, most small companies don’t have unlimited resources. So, you have to get creative with whatever you’ve got, be it money or manpower. The ever-changing work landscape requires evolution and realignment of your business goals on a daily basis. Your willingness to embrace this change and your resilience can go a long way in helping you settle in.

  1. So How Do These Decisions Pan out Eventually? Is It All Happy Thereafter?

“It’s OK to have your eggs in one basket as long as you control what happens to that basket,” says Elon Musk.

The bottom line is, the shift can be a great career move as long as you’ve done your homework. The speed of transition and adaptability will depend on your individual competencies. Careful assessment is required to map the values, work styles and competencies of all key stakeholders.

This is the secret sauce, which we get right every time. We map the horoscopes at all levels, map the stated and the non-stated, and give time for knowing and calibration. If this part is taken care of well, the results can be liberating and amazing for all.

Wrapping Up

We are living in exciting times! If you have talent, passion, courage, and resilience to be more, do more, and explore more, the opportunities may not necessarily come in Trillion Dollar labels. There is a flip side though. The transition from trillion to billion is tough. That’s why you should seek professional guidance from Purple Quarter, Tech Head Search Firm. With the experts on your side, you will be all set to unlock yourself!

Importance of Search Partners in this emerging Technology World

 

Hand-picked tech leaders are considered to be the key element for the success in today’s highly competitive business environment amongst the emerging technology space. If you have a vision to scale up your business & technology towards 10X, plan for global expansions, establish global partnerships, M&A, etc., hiring and retaining the best talents will become the core element for business decisions.

Consider, if you are a stakeholder or a key decision maker what would you do? Of course, one would look for a leader who is not only an exceptional tech geek but also who can understand the business dimensions. We call it as a formulation of the ‘T’, where vertically the talent has in-depth knowledge in tech and horizontally demonstrates the business facet.

That’s the reason, Bengaluru based Technology Head Search Firm, ‘Purple Quarter’, believes not only in encouraging tech leadership hires for the companies but also in consulting the stakeholders in terms of the company search strategy.  They strive for effective search process by advocating a distinctive initiative of uni-dimensional approach to find tech heads for technology companies across globe.

Organizations can internally conduct the search process for their leadership hires to reduce the cost which will be paid off to the search firms. But, one should understand that not hiring right talent or not filling the position within time will be significantly higher the cost of the search. That’s why search partners are available in the market because they are expertise at what they do and they ensure that right candidate is presented to the clients and hence resulting the candidate onboard within the specified time frame.

Further, here are the few key reasons why search partners are essential for companies to get a right talent on-board.

‘Time Value for Money’, you require a senior level talent who should be truly marvelous!

Search partners can support you by game changing hires through conducting rigorous research to hire the top performing talent. These talent are sole drivers of the firm’s vision.

Strategic search partners firstly assess the candidates by understanding the DNA of the candidate, their core values and the passion that complements the stakeholders thereby tagging along the vision of the firm, thus, resulting into a closure at a specified span of time.

Search partners can tap into a global network of contacts

“Top leadership talent in tech space is a scarce commodity”. It’s perhaps the reverse!

It’s a functional for every search partner to consult the candidates by finding right opportunities for them so that they exactly fit like a brick in the wall and that’s the reason ‘Purple Quarter’ spent first 180+ days from the inception by catering to 170 odd active/passive of imperative talent across globe and integrated the idea of their progression, mobility, motive and overall personality index.

Smooth Transition 

The transition for finding right talent for the company can be turbulent. Having a right search partners helps the organizations to reduce rough transition that could lead to a negative effect on the business.

Executive or senior level positions play a vital role in any business. After understanding the various internal and external factors of the organization to find a right talent, search partners implement effective search process that sets a firm search strategy.

However, a hasty decision can lead to choosing the wrong candidate thus leading to a difficult transition.

Strict Confidentiality

Filling up the c-level position is very crucial given fact that the organizations with such open positions are vulnerable.

A search partner will always maintain appropriate window of confidentiality for the valuable details or information collected during the search process. Such privileged information of candidates or clients protects the management against the competitors, employees, and stakeholders of organization.

“A company is a group organized to create a product or service, and it is only as good as its people and how excited they are about creating. I do want to recognize a ton of super-talented people. I just happen to be the face of the companies.”- Elon Musk, founder & CEO of Tesla, SpaceX, Neuralink 

When you partner with a search firm, you know you are paying on a year consensus depending on the number of closures. However, the firm will be at a competitive advantage by making its hiring process the best.

Constant measuring and adherence to the process and tweaking will always result in optimized techniques and tactics that provides the firm what exactly they demand.

Purple Quarter always aimed at positioning the right talent to help the partners and candidates in consulting and extending support thereby guaranteeing that right decisions are modeled!

An Undefined Case in Indian Start-ups: Nascent Stage to Zombies

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do.” – Steve Jobs, Apple Inc. co-founder, chairman and CEO

Technology start-ups have been emerging rapidly over the last few years in the global market. Of late, India has been the third largest place for start-up innovation. Well, one needs to compliment investors and venture capitalists for the major contribution towards the development for their consistent bulk funds that has been driving most these organisations over a last decade.

Notwithstanding the fact that market valuation of the Indian start-ups has grown significantly over past few years, a recent study by IBM, “Entrepreneurial India” found that 90% start-ups fail within the first five years and 77% of the venture capitalists believe that Indian start-ups lack technologies and unique business models. Where in, some start-ups succeed that capture the qualities such as vision, determination, social and fundraising skills, adaptive to changes, etc. which keeps them driving upwards in the market.

Why Fail?

According to Forbes, Since 2015, more than 1500 start-ups have shutdown in India and as per Tracxn, a research partner for venture capitalists & corporate development offices, more than 11,000 start-ups went dead-pooled or zombies due to lack of raising funds or went off track of runway.
Following are the key reasons for start-ups ceased or experienced a failure:

Absence of Vision

A well-defined or crisp vision is a skill or finesse that any company leader needs to draw in order to keep the business in a right flow. The most vital part of start-ups is to envision how to monetize every single activity or belonging. It is not the ‘money’ but the ‘passion’ that drives entrepreneur’s vision towards success and will serve as a compass at tough times.

Inadequate Mentorship or Guidance

According to Grant Thornton report, most founders of failed start-ups feel that the lack of guidance and mentorship in terms of industry knowledge and support is a major reason behind their failure. Every business needs help to grow, Advisory board will get the expertise and mentoring towards determining business area of need and keep the overall stuff in structure.

Financial Constraints

A successful start-up is efficient in managing its finances and able to operate very lean. But the one among major reason for failure is when the resources are limited and time is the essence, most of companies look at climbing the higher ladder at the earliest to achieve highest revenue which leads to utmost loss of funds and hence the firms exhaust their resources quickly and leads to doom. At this point, companies need to master the skill of doing more with less.

Social Skills

Networking is another reason for start-ups success. A founder or leader should always be in a dedicated network in and around the domain or industry. Most of the start-up founders turn to be introvert and keep themselves away from meeting people. Great start-ups have outstanding leaders because they love to talk and inspire people by sharing the thoughts and journey they have seen to build an empire! Such attitude not only leads to growth in business but also opens up doors for partnerships or to find investors.

Innovation and filing patents

Though initiatives taken by Government of India such as ‘Make in India’, ‘Start-up India Program’, etc. may have stimulated growth, but it’s no secret that innovation is a piece which still remains missing in the Indian Start-up ecosystem. The hard part is that India has been follower market – what we see in US and China today will start appearing in India tomorrow. As per the Global Innovation Index, currently India stands at 60th rank, which is 38 places behind China. Undoubtedly, India has top class talent, high market potential and global business skills one needs to start investing in R&D which helps in establishing links between the current social problems, technology & innovation.

Indeed, patent is the yardstick for innovation, India is miles behind Asian counterparts. According to World Intellectual Property Organisation, in 2016-2017 India has filed 9584 international patents, China has filed 48,882 international patents, and Japan has filed 48,208 patents. Emphasizing Innovation on social needs or issues faced by India leads to consistent business growth, sustainability and ultimately addressing towards significant changes in the common man needs.

“Don’t worry about failure; you only have to be right once.” – Drew Houston, Dropbox Co-Founder and CEO

In India, many new ventures do not succeed because the technology start-ups are very complex. There are several interconnected factors that could play a part in start-up failure such as founder characteristics, business & technical roadmap, practices and behaviour after start-up. Successful start-ups spend more time in planning, advises from professionals, customers, suppliers to understand the market needs before developing product or rendering services.

In general, more studies of the start-up development process needs to be identified by creating groundwork for more successful and increased success rates for technology & innovation start-ups. This will provide economic benefits and accelerate the development of solutions to societal needs and issues.

Revamping Technology Leaders to Transformational Technology Leaders: Who are they?

When you learn to program a computer, you acquire a superpower: The ability to make an inanimate object to follow your command. If you have a vision and you articulate it in a code, well, you can make it real! And once you have built your small systems that perform clever tasks then, you own a competency to parlay creative power into societal power because Technologists not only just build the systems that ease the operations of everyday life but also they make “The World a much better place”. Thus, a high-paying Tech. job, working on cutting edge technologies makes them leave a Technotopian Life.

But, here is the glitch! Many Technologists are precise towards building technology & over a time it becomes increasingly hard to ignore the fact that one should not be constrained towards Technologist view of thought and language. In fact, one should learn how the quantifiable, individualistic, computational view – that accounts for contribution with the whole expanses of cognitive experience & towards Leadership.

Igniting interest and enthusiasm within the team has its challenges. Moreover, getting employees active & more focused is furthermore difficult task. Technologists must focus on becoming transformational and professionally aligned so that they can actively engage with the team by inspiring, mentoring and persevering the day-to-day constraints that ultimately result in affecting the lives through the beliefs and values of peers.

Some of the Key Elements of Transformational Leadership are as follows:

Idealized Influence

There has been always misconceptions about leadership, including a belief that it requires being a highest qualified within the department, Having an impressive title or stand at a highest grade or graduating from a best institute because great leaders like Larry Ellison or Steve Jobs, who never graduated from the college. Yet, they were insanely successful and recognised to be greatest leaders. Strong leaders are people who earn others respect by serving as role models and bringing out best in them.

Inspirational Motivation

IT Leaders are in the position to develop, encourage and inspire their team. Transformational Leaders should not be confused with “pure” fascinating leaders because they intentionally or unintentionally fail to transform their followers as they cannot recognize the one’s need & hence fail or prohibit them to develop. Whereas, transformational leaders motivate their peers to become independent self-thinkers and to develop themselves.

Intellectual Stimulation

Transformational leaders value all the experience as learning opportunities & they attempt to be part of the learning process. They promote education and structural development activities to stimulate their peers.

Individualised Consideration

Usually, self-management skill results in individualised development that correlates to self-efficacy and vision accomplishment. Transformational Leadership is all about coming up with new ideas, evolving the self and improvising those around them.

As mentioned earlier, transformational leaders always focus on specific leadership traits that affects the lives of others and appeal to people’s beliefs and values. There has always been a positive relationship between the Transformational Leadership Traits and employees’ job satisfaction and motivation.

In the ever changing environment of technology infused business, technology leadership is a remodelling subset of leadership study and practice. However, there are differences between the Traditional Technology Leadership and Transformational Technology Leadership as it varies toward the approach in various factors like skills, traits, abilities and requirements, etc. Will it become equally prevalent that the best Technologists will have strong Leadership acumen? Or would it be necessary for a Technologists to gain apprehensive experience to make an impact towards business goals as well as individual goals that positions them to be a Transformational Technology Leaders?