In times when ‘dropping out of college and starting something of your own’ has become the new cool, there also are people who successfully complete their graduations, post graduations and apply the lessons learnt in college to their respective ventures.
Quite similar to how Namrata Bostrom, Founder, POPxo and Raoul Bostrom,Head of Product and Growth, POPxo are applying their knowledge gained at London Business School to build one of the hottest startups — POPxo.
POPxo, is a platform for the digital content generation which contains all that a modern Indian women needs.
When the founders started working on the idea in 2013, they were looking to fill the content vacuum that exists online for Indian women. Endless brainstorming sessions were followed by extensive research and number crunching. Once the idea was properly formulated, the time came to form a company, which led to the mixed joys of incorporation, legals, hiring and managing a team. And then came in picture the lessons they learn at the B-School.
When we asked Raoul, what was his take on this entire scenario, he explained:
‘Firstly, while on the subject of education — and what kind of education you may or may not need — we want to make it clear that we would never want to discourage people from getting a good education, especially at the undergraduate level! (We don’t buy into the “being a dropout is glamorous” thing. Yes some dropouts have founded amazing companies but the vast majority haven’t — the outliers are by no means representative).
On to MBAs. One thing we hear a lot from 21–24 year olds is that they feel they “need” to get an MBA. When pushed, they often can’t elaborate on why that is — other than to say that they don’t think they’ll be able to get ahead in their careers without one. That’s a legitimate concern. But also a concern that reflects the thinking of more old-school employers.
When start-ups hire, they look at what you can contribute immediately. Yes, they want their staff to learn and grow with the company. But they also want to hire people who can turn up on day 1 and help improve the product or bring in new sales. So if you want to get a job at a start-up — or you want to be an entrepreneur and build your own business — you’re going to be judged on what you can do, not on the stamp of approval you received from any university.
Which takes us to the 12 lessons we’ll be talking about. These are things we picked from our experience at London Business School that are directly applicable to running an early stage business. The 12 lessons cover a variety of areas (from managing people to understanding VC funding) to reflect what a lot of people end up doing when they work in start-ups — basically a little bit of everything!