My first step into entrepreneurship; It’s Rises, Falls and The Lessons.
Between 2013 and the last quarter of 2014 I startup my own business in partnership what was then called the Business Process Outsourcing (call center), BPO for short. However, for historical reasons I didn’t go into my partnership agreement, contract was not with my partners but with a local agent. I won’t name it here; let’s just call it Global Tech Solutions.
It was about data entry (captcha filling and proof reading), the production was done on a very minimal scale one hundred thousand Indian rupees which is almost six thousand Dirham. Contract was under name of my brother Arsalan Patel as I was not eligible to be an Investor because of adolescence. I was 17 at that time.
The company was named as StepOne.
Another year and half after starting the company, it ran without profit and fail to thrive. In fact, I have spent my time and money differently. With the StepOne demise, it left me demotivated. I quit with a heavy heart. I was broken, and I accepted, that I made a mistake (when you make mistakes, keep in mind that it doesn’t define who you are as a person. Try not to jump on the conclusions about your worth or value. No one’s perfect, and that’s okay. There are no mistake, only lessons).
Unfortunately, building an unorganized business relied on miracle. This marked the moment of company’s failure. It took me few years to realize there is nothing called miracle and luck until you do hard work.
Here’s the part I find cause of failure: over excitement, lack of experience and knowledge, no proper planning, no strategies, feeling boss (leadership failure), exhibit poor management, inability to compete with deadlines, engaging in wrong group of people, untrusted attorneys and decisions without thinking/consulting. If none of it would have happened StepOne hadn’t given up.
Don’t Rush to Create an Empire. Consider partnerships carefully. Businesses can be put down to its choice of commitment strength.
The past is done and at some point, it’s time to move on – which is also something I had to realize after my failure: Now I have the mindset: “Accept the situation and make the best out of it.” Of course, I’m not done yet. Somehow again I convinced myself to start again from the scratch. Thus, I recommend to stay in a mode of hungriness. This time I would learn from my mistake and create an enthusiastic image. Yes, I believe in myself and I destine for success. I will rebuild my company, even vision will call it is still my first step “StepOne”.
“Uthaunga kadam fir se or mil jayegi manzil, maza to tab ayega ke pair me kuch thakan rahe…“
Early in 2015, I started working with Mena College of Management-Dubai initially as Tea Boy (Yes, this is should be called as “The Beginning”) I choose to be a Tea Boy at first because all I was needed is the knowledge and experience. After five years of hard work and sleepless night. I adapted various skills, I tried learning by myself. Whatever I have learned so far, it’s all on my own by trial and error, and by doing this I learned from my failures leading me to improve myself. I learned that you have to be very careful while making decisions. I learned the way how organizations works. But that is still not enough. What I realized is that in order to find balance, sometimes important things need to sit on the back-burner for a while. You don’t have to keep all of your balls in the air at once. It’s OK to put some of them down for a while.
Keeping a journal of your thoughts, ideas, feelings and perspectives can be recommendable in the process. Brainstorm and present those ideas with and to your mentor and loved ones. The resulting cheerleading effect will create even more distance between the old and the new versions of yourself – confidence, there you are again!
Every one of us knows the situation of a friend telling us that we should simply forget about what happened whenever we experience failure. It’s a nice reflection of their support but still: it just doesn’t work like that. First, your brain does not want to forget since whatever it was that you tried implicated a whole lot of work. Second, you don’t want to forget as well. What lessons can be learned, if we keep refusing to actually learn from our mistakes. Try to review the situation: What did you do well? What is it you could have done differently? Lists like these will help when analyzing the situation. Side note: Don’t focus on the fear. Yes, failure often causes insecurities which is totally understandable. But why not change the game? You should rather take these disappointments as wins so you understand that there were still successes that came from the experience.
Moving on can be quite difficult, when always being reminded of what went wrong in the past. Sometimes, it’s good to go out there and to have a little break. Clear your mind so you can think clearly about your next steps. It’s possible to take on a traditional job for a while in someone else’s company or to go on an extended vacation. Even a volunteering program in order to transfer the focus from yourself to another person can be quite beneficial. Get yourself some space to think and regain some sense of satisfaction. In fact, it’s more than necessary to fully recover from what you and your business have been going through. These new challenges will stimulate creativity and motivation.
The real mentors of my life are: Taught me to be the best in your field, these are people who are advocates and who have me backed up always.
Naushad Patel: My inspiration and the great person whom I call Dad; Intikhab Chougle: CEO, Shabeen Management; Munaf Wadkar: Landscape Engineer; Nazir Hurzuk: Finance Manager; Fahad Wadekar: Head of Admin; Prof. Ghassan Al Qaimari: Dean/President; Mr. Ahed Yahya Hamarsha: Businessmen; Ms. Leslie Lingan: HR Manager.
Postscript: I should have made more of a fuss about the success and its failure. It took me more than six years to differentiate between Entrepreneurs and Businessman – thankfully I understood that I should keep learning all the time or I might never have achieved it at all. Success keys, but that is a subject for another article, at another time.