The words of Govindbhai Dholakia (Chairman SRK Exports) kept echoing my mind while my car raced on the Mumbai-Surat highway. I had no reason to quit my job as Managing Director of US based MNC, Sears Holdings in India, that, I established seven years back from nothing to more than a thousand people company. I had the best team, a comfortable life and nothing to complain about when it came to compensation. I was still thinking, what made me take the decision to quit all of this and start SRKay, a new venture with no idea on what we will be doing with it.
A comfortable life had limited my dreams. Probably I became more selfish and just thought about myself. I was like many others who got used to a monthly salary package coming in my bank account but never thinking about the value I generated. His words kept echoing my mind, something that made me dream again. “I want to make technology business bigger than my diamond business, and I feel, you can achieve this for me. I trust you.” Govindbhai must have seen something different in me that he trusted me so much with his dreams.
‘I am nothing, but I can do anything’ was prominently displayed everywhere in his company in Surat. That day I learned so much from someone who alone created a billion dollar company from scratch. Someone who had no means and hardly any formal education, and yet he is so successful and respected. It was a humbling experience. I wanted to think like him. Someone who can create more jobs, create more happiness and be someone who will contribute to country’s prosperity and growth. That day I felt that I can be the enabler of this mammoth dream and right there I took the call. I was happy that I was getting his son Shreyans as my partner in this business.
My car stopped at the highway joint where my driver and I got down to refresh and take some bite. I was slowly getting aware of the challenge that I have signed up. Making a technology company that is bigger than a well-established diamond business in far shorter time frame was puzzling, but that is where my experience started helping me.
I realized that creating a company that can become multi-billion dollar in a decade will be impossible if I choose earlier tested and tried ways. We cannot create Infosys again, and it is equally difficult to create another Ola or Flipkart by burning cash. I had to do something different. It was clear that if I have to be successful, we must be doing things that are innovative, sustainable and something that touches lives of more people. By the time I reached home, I was sure what will SRKay be like.
Ten days later, I shared my vision. SRKay will be operated like a Private Equity company that will focus on nurturing not one but multiple innovative ideas from promising creative minds who can take the ideas and converts them into a successful venture. My job will be to help them succeed by providing them the technology, sales, marketing and funding support. This way I will create several leaders and nurture many more for the future.
I collected my team. Handpicked leaders like Kesavan Srinivasan and Shriram Vishwanathan to help me with technology. My first venture ScrumStart under a young entrepreneur Sandeep generated better than expected ROI and my technology investments are now getting ready for launch in next couple of months. SRKay is designed to be an innovative and empowered team of people that are collecting all the energy that is required to create new rules of success.
Every day I recall the golden words of Govindbhai “I trust you, ” and this is exctly what I tell my team every day.
Managing Partner SRKay Consulting Group