India, ranked 100th among 190 countries for ease of doing business, is not the choicest place for startups. Only a handful of founders have been able to beat the odds.
What’s in their journey that can be dissected and emulated?
This curiosity led Nistha to pursue those who rose from humble beginnings yet making a dent in the Indian startup universe. This book is a record of that eighteen-month journey.
In her incisive one-on-one interviews with 15 ambitious founders of India including Girish Mathrubootham, Nithin Kamath, Jaydeep Barman, Gaurav Munjal, Tarun Mehta and others, Nistha uncovers the decisions and insights that led these startup founders to find their unique roadmap to success.
One thing that underlined all the stories was the founders’ belief in NO SHORTCUTS.
Read the never-heard stories of Freshworks, Faasos, Unacademy, Zerodha, Slideshare, Pulse, Aspiring Minds, Madhouse/Morpheus, Akosha, Ather Energy, Instablogs, Greyb, LikeaLittle, Wingify and Fashiate.
Did you know that Jaydeep came close to shutting down Faasos when things were going hopelessly wrong in Mumbai? Same with GreyB – Deepak thought he will never find right employees in Gurgaon! But all of them turned the corner by taking some right decisions. The stories here are all about those decisions and what you can learn from them.
Whether you are an ambitious entrepreneur, a college graduate, a young professional harboring loftier dreams, a corporate executive unhappy with status quo or just a curious soul, the interviews featured here would leave you with a more realistic understanding of startups and how to move forward when you are stuck.
NO SHORTCUTS is a must-read for anyone who dreams of building a successful startup. You will find answers to:
Where did the original idea for the startup come from?
How did the startup get its first 100 users and grow from there?
Why did the founder bootstrap or seek funding?
What decisions did not work well and how did the founder recover from it?
How did the startup figure out its business model?
And many more…
“Nistha’s first-person stories make vivid the effervescence that characterizes entrepreneurship in modern India – the twists and turns, the ups and downs, the creativity and sheer exhilaration. Read and enjoy!”
– Prof Tarun Khanna
Jorge Paulo Lemann Professor, Harvard Business School
Director, Lakshmi Mittal South Asia Institute, Harvard University
“Entrepreneurs rarely open up as candidly as Nistha has gotten them to. Kudos to her“
– Allwin Agnel, Founder/CEO at PaGaLGuY.com
“Entrepreneurship can be a lonely journey and while every entrepreneur learns valuable lessons each day, not everyone’s story comes out to inspire others. These stories are important for all aspiring entrepreneurs in the journey. Nistha has done a great job there. A must read!“
– Ashish Tulsian, CEO at POSist
“A fascinating peep into struggles and successes of varied startups that lucidly brings out the diversity of experiences and provides a nuanced introduction to entrepreneurial processes“
– Rakesh Basant, Professor of Economics, IIM Ahmedabad
“Indian startup ecosystem needs relatable inspiration and this book brings that. While it is fascinating to read about Jobs, Musk, Gates, and Zuckerberg, our entrepreneurs can learn more from home-grown entrepreneurs whose challenges and approaches are much relevant to our business models. I was especially fascinated to read the story of Girish Mathrubootham.”
– Balaji Viswanathan
CEO at Invento, Most follower writer on Quora
“This is a “must read” for all entrepreneurs. Nistha has truly captured an authentic perspective of what it takes to build companies in India!“
– Prashant Mehta, Partner, Lightbox
“I worked with Nistha for several years – she has a tremendous intellect and a fearless entrepreneurial spirit. This will be a fun read!”
– Ken Wilson, CEO, Tower Research Capital Markets
“The Indian flavor of entrepreneurship is as creative, vibrant and colorful as the country itself. Part textbook and part tour guide, ‘No Shortcuts’ captures that flavor in a way that delivers both generalizable lessons and insights into the unique character of Indian entrepreneurs in their environment.”
– Stuart Read, Professor, Willamette University
A successful Wall Street professional and early employee in Manhattan startups, Nistha returned to India in 2012 to start her own Indian entrepreneurial journey. After a couple of attempts, she found success in Scholar Strategy, an education counseling company that prides itself in helping 100s of students getting into top universities across the world including Harvard and MIT. This unique lifestyle business allows Nistha to work only 6 months a year, spending the remaining time traveling and writing.
Her first novel, Seven Conversations, interpreted Bhagvad Gita in a modern context and gathered rave reviews. With 32,000+ followers, and 4.5M+ views on her answers on the popular American QnA based website, Quora, Nistha writes extensively on careers, entrepreneurship and pursuing one’s passion. Her articles have appeared on Entrepreneur, Times, DailyO, DNA, Tribune and other leading media outlets.
Previously, she studied Computer Science at University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign and dropped out of MBA program at NYU Stern where she organized Stern’s first Entrepreneurship Summit inviting the likes of Seth Godin.
Apart from running Scholar Strategy, she conducts aspirational talks for students and writing workshops for bloggers.
For press and media queries, please contact creative@nisthaonweb
For speaking engagements, please contact email@example.com
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