About Me

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Mumbai, India
I run an IT Security consulting firm based out of India. We started off from scratch in 2001 when I was 21, and have offices in Mumbai, Bahrain, and UAE. The idea behind the blog is to share the stories of how we run the business, the deals we make, the deals that break, the heartburn, and the sheer joy.

The Ultimate Startup Guide

The Ultimate Startup Guide is an e-book that provides answers to all your questions related to starting and growing a business in India. Everything you wanted to know about entrepreneurship in India from ideation to registration to marketing to hiring. The book contains a large number of practical examples, anecdotes, interviews, and motivational material to help you get started, and to grow rapidly in a booming Indian economy. If you've got the idea, this book will help you through with the execution and realize your dreams. Here are some of the key questions you will find answered in this book:
  • When starting a business, what are the legal issues involved?
  • What form of incorporation is better suited to which type of business?
  • What tax issues are involved?
  • How do I start a business and what are the pitfalls?
  • How do I market my business in the absence of significant funding?
  • How do I get funded?
  • What are the basic accounting concepts I should be aware of?
  • What is a business plan and how should I build one?
The brief table of contents of the book is as follows:
  1. Getting started
  2. Ideation
  3. Forms of Enterprises
  4. Funding
  5. Basic Accounting and Taxation
  6. Import and Export Licensing
  7. Trademark and Patenting
  8. Rules for NRIs and Foreigners
  9. Building a Business Plan
  10. Marketing on a Shoestring
  11. Website and Branding
  12. Women Entrepreneurs
  13. Templates
To order the Ultimate Startup Guide - email me at kkmookhey@gmail.com.

Details of the book are:
Title: The Ultimate Startup Guide
Author: Kanwal Mookhey
Pages: 150
Additional: Companion CD contains numerous templates for building your business plan, calculating cashflow, preparing profit and loss, and balance sheets, preparing invoices, your resume and profile, marketing material, websites, contracts, and many other useful and motivational material.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Who's next? The search for a successor - Part I

I've been running my current firm for more than five years now. And it's about time we looked out for someone else to come along and take it from here. Another entrepreneur once told me, "The real point of running a business is to give it away, not to hold on to it for your progeny to take over". Well, I am not giving away the business, just hoping to hand over daily operations to someone. And hoping that this will give me time to take on a more strategic role rather than an operational role. And maybe even allow me the time to tinker with infosec technology - something I don't get to do much nowadays.

It's been quite a journey though. I remember starting out in 2001 after dropping out of college, with absolutely no idea of how to start and run a business, leave alone offer consulting services in information security. Those first few years were spent running the entire shindig out of a 278 sq ft office at Churchgate with a fast depleting startup capital of 2 lakhs in the bank. Buying spare parts from Lamington Road and assembling the PC's simply to save on a couple of thousand bucks per PC. Keeping the AC's shut off, taking the bus instead of a rickshaw, taking on whatever work came our way simply to pay off next month's bills. Evading old friends and relatives who would simply never buy any sort of rationale (some of them still don't!) The daily trip from Andheri to Churchgate, struggling to find the sweet spot of time when the rush in the locals would be just about manageable (I think I finally discovered it to be the 9:35am for the Andheri local to Churchgate, and evening is anyone's guess!). And today, we stand on the edge of an exciting new leap with offices in Mumbai and Bahrain, and partnerships across the world. I say, it's been one helluva ride!

But it's time to get some more hands on board. So with the objective of finding the right person for the post, we posted on Monster.com a while ago, and oh boy, were flooded with almost 600 resumes for the job. Using a divide-and-conquer strategy, we split the resumes among four of our team members, and asked them to use liberal criteria to sift through the bunch:

  1. Experience - at least 5 years
  2. Should have an IT background, preferably in consulting or software services, or even better in infosec. So let's avoid those with backgrounds in retail or manufacturing. Since they won't have the right people and project management skills.
  3. Should have either strong HR or Marketing skills. It would be impossible to find someone with both strong HR and strong Marketing skills. But if he/she has one of these, then we only need to find only another senior marketing manager or a senior HR manager to complement him/her.
  4. Avoid any personal prejudices in the selection.
  5. Let salary not be a criteria at the first round of selection.
This helped us get down to about 200 resumes. From these, we further shortlisted another 100 as really good ones. And when I mean good, these were pretty impressive. I think the sheer talent at the senior and middle management levels in India is amazing. I liked one chap particularly who listed angling as one of his hobbies. Sounds like my kinda guy! Except that I am the one who wants to go off and do some angling, while he's running the show! Any other takers?


rajAT said...

Oh man you retiring so soon :D

So where you headed for angling Bahamas or Coral reef

Intrepid said...

Rajat: Not retiring! :) Just looking at sharing the load and getting some senior management on board, now that we can afford it. But as for angling and the like, first vacation is simply going for a no-laptop-no-cellphone 4 day ITC cruise on Kerela backwaters. Then Leh!

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